Why We’re Not Buying Those Fallout 4 Rumours

Why We’re Not Buying Those Fallout 4 Rumours
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For the past few weeks, our tips inbox has been overflowing with messages about Fallout 4, which everyone assumes will be the next game from the talented folks at Bethesda Game Studios.

The hypothetical next Fallout game is getting a lot of attention on sites like Reddit because of a teaser website called thesurvivor2299.com (warning: annoying beeping sounds). People have dug into the website’s source code, putting together all sorts of coded messages and theorising that Bethesda will announce Fallout 4 at Spike’s annual awards show this December, where new games are often unveiled and teased. Bethesda announced Skyrim at the Spike VGAs — now called the VGX — in 2010.

People are really excited for the next Fallout. Which is great! But let’s not get our hopes up too high just yet…

While Bethesda could very well announce Fallout 4 at the Spike VGX on December 7, I don’t think this teaser website is real. In fact, there are a few convincing reasons it’s fake:

1. The site is counting down to the wrong date. When TheSurvivor2299 launched last month, we didn’t know when Spike’s big awards show would fall. Now we know it’s on December 7… yet the countdown ends on December 11. Chances are, Bethesda ain’t holding a separate announcement just four days after one of the biggest shows in gaming.

2. Bethesda hasn’t said a thing. If this was their teaser, don’t you think they’d want to embrace it? When I reached out to Bethesda a few days ago to ask what the deal is, the response was: “We aren’t making any comment.” Considering how much effort seems to have been put into this site, you’d think if it were real, Bethesda would want all of their fans to know about it.

3. Would a professional video game company really put up a teaser website with such an annoying beeping noise? I mean, really?

4. Yes, the domain says it was registered by Bethesda parent company ZeniMax, but there are inconsistencies between this website and other registered Bethesda domains, as this Redditor notes. The server is configured differently, the domain names were registered through GoDaddy instead of ZeniMax’s usual service, Corporate Domains Inc, and a reverse lookup on the IP leads you to a company in Poland, oddly enough.

5. People are pointing to Erik Todd Dellums’ Twitter teases as proof, but even he doesn’t know whether it’s real or not. Dellums, the voice actor behind Fallout 3‘s iconic radio DJ Three-Dog, often tweets teases about the future of the series, but in this case, he doesn’t seem to be in the loop.

Veer on the side of caution, people. While the thought of a next-gen Fallout game coming soon is certainly enticing, there are too many red flags here for us to buy this one. And there’s no real evidence that it’s legit.


  • Until Bethesda/Zenimax hold an official conference or release an actual press release I don’t believe anything. Same with R* and pc/next gen. I can still be hopeful, just realistic.

    • Just a quick topic derail – what is the likelihood of R* migrating/upgrading GTA V to PS4 and Xbox One? Has there been any more rumblings?

      • As an educated/ logical gamer and adult I will go on record to say that GTA5 will never come to next gen, PC it will within the next 6-12 months. However GTA Online, the persistant and online world which Rockstar wants players to enjoy for years to come, will come to next gen. As for when however, I would assume sometime shortly after the PC release of GTA5 and GTA Online.

  • My thought, and the thought of many other people including on the US version of this article, if this was fake Bethesda would’ve come out a long time ago and said so. We know Fallout 4 is in development but Bethesda said that they will announce their next ‘big project’ when they’re ready and have shot down any prior rumours of Fallout 4. The whole point of a teaser website is not to announce the game as soon as someone guesses what it is, but to tease

    Also, “beeping noise”? Are you aware of what morse code is? For a teaser website that would be exactly the code I would use to give out hidden messages abour a Falout game.

    There’s also a Reddit thread countering almost all of those arguements, one of them being the website was linked to a guy who works for the advertising company Bethesda used for either Fallout 3 or Skyrim, I forget which. One of his profile pages linked in that thred has since been taken down.

    I’m more positive that this is real rather than fake. If it’s a fake, it’s one of the best ever. Half Life 3, there was just someone trademarking it and it was quickly withdrawn. This not only has the trademark which is still registered to Bethesda, but also a teaser website that is being constantly updated. The “beeping noise” (*sigh* no wonder some people can’t stand Kotaku’s writers sometimes) has changed multiple times to give out different messages. That’s a lot of effort to put into something that’s just trolling people. Bethesda’s silence is a positive thing though and not a negative thing. They’re protective as hell of their IPs and wouldn’t let something like this go on for a couple of weeks without a cease and desist being issued

    • Nicely, said. That was my sentiment exactly. Bethesda is most likely to actively distance itself from something that was not part of its IP. In this case they have not. Like you said they would have taken legal action by now as this website is a serious infringement of their IP.

  • Thats all well and good, but I think the main reason people are speculating more and more is the fact that Bethesda copyrighted ‘Fallout 4’ just recently, and the fact that it’s all happening around the same time. (http://esearch.oami.europa.eu/copla/trademark/data/012311734) or if that doesn’t currently work (http://i.imgur.com/kxjpr77.jpg). You didn’t mention this at all in the article, so I thought I’d just say in case you weren’t aware. Also the ‘annoying beeping sound’ was morse code stating the end date of the countdown, hence ๐Ÿ˜›

    • Or as buggy :p

      I much preffered new vegas as there was never right or wrong. Everything was a shade of grey.

    • Honestly. Bethesda has shown a much greater ability to create the kind of Fallout games that people want. More than Obsidian. New Vegas just felt like a Fallout 3 add-on. Skyrim was a whole new level of open world gaming, and I CANNOT WAIT to see them apply the Skyrim format to the Fallout world.

      Yes freaking please.

  • I’m a little disturbed that someone paid you money to write this article. Your specious reasoning is akin to that of a twelve year old.

    I could claim that this rock keeps away tigers. How does it work? It doesn’t, it’s just a stupid rock; but do you see any tigers around?

  • When I reached out to Bethesda a few days ago to ask what the deal is, the response was: โ€œWe arenโ€™t making any comment.โ€

    Jason, for christ’s sake, haven’t you been a game journo for years at this point? Everyone is well aware that “no comment” is just about the same as confirming something.

    Some of the stuff involved with the site look tremendously fake, others are very convincing. We’ll have to wait and see.

    • You’re clearly not a journo. ‘No comment’ is a precautionary measure to cover their asses. It is not a confirmation or denial for a reason. When the company is ready to make a statement they will make one. Until they’re ready, ‘no comment’ is the safe response no matter the situation.

      • Which means something is happening, at the very least. If they weren’t doing something with Fallout 4, why wouldn’t they just say “nope, not us”? They’ve done it plenty of times in the past.

        • Because they might have no idea what it is. The pr guys may not know if they’re responsible or not. It happens. No comment means only no comment. No journalist worth his salt will ‘interpret’ a statement.

  • Just grabbed a morse code app for my android and this is what it says.
    It seems to keep repeating but I do not know where the beginning of the sequence is ad where it ends.

  • Then a quick google found this is what the message is.
    tw0730 on cq cq cq de vt 2510730 one six emrg vt shlt fer surv qbn nr 119 ii emrg vt shlt fer surv qbn nr 119 k

  • Best not to read this because spoilers for Sons of Anarchy season 6.

    Well since Ron Pearlman now doesn’t have a gig with Sons of Anarchy, i’m sure he’s looking for something to keep him busy, so why not a new Fallout game to narrate.

  • “Annoying beeping sound”.

    Hilarious. Obviously the author has no grasp whatsoever of the Fallout-Franchise. Was this article written in a coffee break?
    Seems more likely to me, that Kotaku has somehow managed to sleep through this thing (that website is a point of discussion for a while now), is coming late to the party with nothing to contribute and wants to have a bit of attention anyways.

  • In regards to Bethesda’s remarks. Don’t you think that a simple “no comment” is MORE suspicious than saying no? In the past Bethesda has ALWAYS said no to any questions about Fallout 4. Since this teaser site they have changed it to a “no comment”.

    Also….. I can’t believe you called the Morse Code a “beeping noise”. Are you kidding me? How old are you?

  • er… you have heard of Morse code, right? Nah, sorry, Morse code is totally not the sort of thing one would put in a teaser for a game based in a 50’s-style ray gun gothic setting…

  • Whether it’s real or not, I can’t wait until Fallout 4 is released. I hope they are using the same engine that they built for Skyrim (Creation Engine), because the Gamebryo Engine is getting pretty long in the tooth, and had an annoying timing issue with vsync.

    • Creation was based on Gamebryo and was just as bad in places. I think we have to accept that Bethesda is not good at designing game engines.

  • I really hope Fallout 4 comes out soon ๐Ÿ™ I played New Vegas and 3 this year after hearing such raving reviews, and holy cow they’re glorious! IMO gaming’s most underacted series.

  • I really hope Bethesda have ditcted the Gamebryo engine and started using another by now (id Tech 5 would be awesome). Seriously, every game they’ve released in the past ten years has been buggy as hell.

  • I created an account here so I could say this is a terrible fucking article. You clearly did very little research, and all your arguments are weak and/or fallacious.

    “1. The site is counting down to the wrong date.”
    You make it seem as though the website must count down to VGX. Maybe they’ll unveil a teaser trailer at VGX and the countdown on the website will culminate in a full trailer.

    “2. Bethesda hasnโ€™t said a thing.”
    If you did some research, you would’ve realized Bethesda has a history of responding to queries like this by either denying their involvement (when it’s fake) or declining to comment (which usually means they’re behind it). They’re not afraid to lie either – to dampen our spirits and then surprise us.

    “3. Would a professional video game company really put up a teaser website with such an annoying beeping noise? I mean, really?”
    It’s called Morse fucking code. It provides insight into the game, but people have to work for it. And it fits perfectly into the Fallout atmosphere. There have been other fake Fallout teaser sites, but they didn’t look nearly this good and they were taken down swiftly for copyright reasons. Yet this one remains.

    “4. Yes, the domain says it was registered by Bethesda parent company ZeniMax, but there are inconsistencies”
    If Bethesda wanted to make a mysterious, teaser website, don’t you think they’d try to make it harder to trace back to them?

    Now I’m not saying that the website is legitimate, just that this article is horrible.

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