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Pokémon Leakers Settle Court Case, Have To Pay $150,000

The accused were tracked down over Discord, Reddit and 4chan

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Pokemon Leakers have to pay Nintendo $150,000 each
Image: Nintendo

Back in 2019, The Pokémon Company took some folks to court over a series of leaks that revealed information about Pokémon Sword & Shield before the game’s release. That case is now over, and the defendants are having to pay up.

If you don’t remember the case, it was a wild one: in order to track down those responsible for the leaks—which came in the form of photos taken of the game’s strategy guide—TPC hired an outside firm specialising in online “forensics” to help them find the culprits over Discord, Reddit and 4chan.

Even wilder were the conditions the strategy guides were being printed and stored under:

For example, TPCi performed background checks on employees, stored game content files on secure computers, restricted access to game working files to a limited number of individuals (who could only gain access to files by entering a username and password), allowed those individuals to transfer game files using only secured methods, used digital measures to trace and mark files to prevent unauthorized access, and required users with access to games files to sign non-disclosure agreements...

...Physical copies of the Strategy Guide are stored in secure locations under tarps, and individuals with access to the printed guides are not permitted to bring cell phones or cameras into the areas where the Strategy Guides are stored.

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And the leaks still got out!

Anyway, as Polygon reports, the case is now done with because the two men accused of the leaks—David Maisonave, an employee of the printing company, and his friend Bryan Cruz, who uploaded the images to the internet—have agreed to settle with TPC, and will have to pay $150,000 along with the cost of their legal fees.

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That’s a life-destroying amount of money to have to pay for leaking a video game, and that’s what the pair settled for, not what they would have had to pay if they’d been found guilty. But then, Nintendo is a company famous for having absolutely no chill, so we shouldn’t expect any from TPC either.