A photo leaked on the Official Fallout Wiki by a possible developer from Bethesda may be the first real Fallout 4 leak showing us locations as well as other details about the next plausible entry in the Fallout franchise. The photo appears to be a snapshot from a phone of a computer at Bethesda. At first glance it appears to be genuine. It should be noted that without an official confirmation from Bethesda about any details on this photo or other details of the game this should be considered rumor and taken with a grain, or cup of salt. With that being said lets take a look at the photo below for more details on this possible Fallout 4 leak.
Click on the photo for the full sized image.
The first element that gives the photo some credibility is the title of "Creation Kit Studio" at the top of the window with the check in time of the user who presumably self-redacted their identity. What makes this more puzzling is that the poster redacted their name, but kept the check in time right down to the second. The inclusion of such a specific time makes it very easy to identify the leak as check in logs are easily referenced. This make the poster either lacking in foresight or part of a intentional leak meant to start building hype for the yet to be announced Fallout 4 game. With E3 a month away it is not outside the realm of possibility that a strategic Fallout 4 leak would start a trickling of information prior to the game's official reveal.
The software itself is labeled "Creation Kit Studio" which is another tick in the "true" category. The Creation Engine was born out of the development for Skyrim after Fallout 3 shipped. In an interview with IGN in 2011, Skyrim director Todd Howard spoke on the new technology for Skyrim stating, "We've always used a lot of our own stuff, mixed with other middleware that we liked. Coming off of Fallout 3, we made a pretty big list of what we wanted to change technically. So we redid the rendering, lighting, shadows, animation, faces, foliage, mountains, scripting, interface and more. And by the time we got through it all, it was clear the technology was new enough to give it its own name, The Creation Engine. Same with our editor, The Creation Kit. They go together as technology."
Other elements of the picture point to elements of the game which do not necessarily lend credibility to the image. According to this leaked Fallout 4 image Classes, Perks and Quests are returning as well as the option to possibly choose the race of your character. Though it should be mentioned that human and mutants are likely the only choices we will see unless other details come to light about Fallout 4 later down the road. Locations are also listed which point to Boston, Massachusetts being the setting keeping the numbered series on the east coast.
The final credible evidence is the half captured image of the official Creation Kit logo. However on the same image is probably the biggest clue that this particular Fallout 4 leak image is a fraud. The top of the window states "About The Creation Kit Studio" and if you have ever looked at the "About" page for any program it usually contains a copyright date as well as the legal name of the company, in this case Bethesda Softworks, LLC. If you were to look closely at the image though, you will see the name of the company followed by an LCC, or "Little C Complier" instead of the LLC or "Limited Liability Corporation." Gameranx also did a great job of noting that the 000s that are visible under the Editor ID portion of the image is file naming behavior used traditionally by modders rather than developers in a studio.
A final bit of skepticism comes from the drop down "Object" menu in the upper left corner of the screen showing the "XBONE" as an option for saving and output. While it is possible for an internal studio to customize their internal software with a simpler name, Microsoft is not a big fan of the "Xbone" moniker so it is doubtful that a studio would put something like that in their internal software.
While this is not proof positive that this Fallout 4 leak is fraudulent, it isn't exactly earth shattering with in game footage or renders or anything else you would expect with a leaked image designed to gain attention. One would question why a person would go to the effort of making something that isn't exactly front cover worthy news.
The Fallout 4 leak, weather true or not, is simply part of the industry where gamers and press alike are constantly on the hunt for more details of games they have been waiting for any kind of official word on. The longer the wait, the more desperate the search becomes and the more "leaks" come out of the woodwork. Ask any die hard fan of Half-Life and you will understand what it is like to watch the years slip away before Valve decides to let us know when we can finally finish that story.
[Image courtesy of Bethesda]