'Fallout 4' E3 Reveal? Alleged Memo Points To No Show [VIDEO]

By Luke Caulfield , Updated May 21, 2014 08:47 AM EDT
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A questionable memo from an even more questionable source has raised suspicions about developer Bethesda's plans, or apparent lack thereof, for this year's E3 concerning one of its biggest properties, Fallout. It's in keeping with a lot of what we've been hearing recently from Bethesda VP and head of PR Pete Hines, but there's reasons aplenty to doubt this "memo."

UPDATE - Leaked Fallout 4 Memo Confirmed Fake, Author Revealed As Attention-Hungry Troll

First, a look at the memo itself:

"Memo To All Employees.
Please read this memo thoroughly, as any employee found to be in breach of the below guidance will result in disciplinary action.

Bethesda Opens Up On Next Fallout Game, But It's Probably Not What You Want to Hear

Date: 16th May 2014

RE: Electronic Entertainment Expo [E3] 2014

The annual E3 event will take place June. As mentioned in the previous addressing, please be aware that you are prohibited from using and/or referencing the following terms:

"Fallout"
"Fallout 4"
"Fallout: Nuka World"
"Boston Project"
"Elder Scrolls"
"Elder Scrolls VI"
"Project Greenheart"

This list is non-exhaustive, and must be adhered to. If you receive a question you are unable to answer without using any of the above terms, please refer them to Mr. Hines. As you are already aware, we do not intend to announce the "Boston Project" or "Project Greenheart" until a later date. As you would expect, the risks imposed by using the above terms may lead to unreleased work being exposed at an early stage. We will update you at a later date in regards to lifting the embargo upon the above terms."

Catch any red flags? Oh, they're there...
* Formatting - It's not an exact rule, but memos typically lead with things like the date, subject, who it's from, etc. * "The annual E3 event will take place June." How specific, and how informative for an official memo.
* Employees are forbidden from using the term "Elder Scrolls," when the developer currently has a game, and a fairly recently released one at that, out now, in The Elder Scrolls Online. Good luck with finding a loophole to talk about that MMORPG.
* The Boston Project is a nice touch, as is the Nuka World. Nuka World is a nod of the head to alluding to ZeniMax's recent trademark filing with the US patent office. As for the Boston Project, a swirl of rumors including the Survivor2099 hoax site had a large number believing that Beantown would be the setting for the next Fallout game.

But the source of this alleged "memo" is the most dubious. The first outlet to report on the memo was Newsvine, which describes itself as having its users in charge. "Community members" are allowed to "publish their own articles, share other interesting links they've found, and participate in spirited debates about anything and everything that's happening in the world at any given moment." Nothing against the users, but that does reek of a complete absence of standards and fact checking that allows drivel like this to be published in the first place.

An obscure and a barely two weeks young Twitter account also claims to have come across the memo via GameFaqs, but neglected to provide a link. There's also a Facebook profile featuring a similarly looking and named busty blonde hocking the same sort of garbage articles.

* UPDATE - It seems as though "Carlie" has disappeared from both Twitter and Facebook. Fancy that...*

The Newsvine article was the work of one Fred Nelson, who never bothers to name a source for the memo in the article. Said article also happens to be his only contribution to the site. No profile, no comments, no nothing. The only other appearance of Mr. Nelson comes from Facebook, which he only joined just last month. His one and only friend there also just so happens to be that same curvaceous tweeter.

The memo is clearly a fraud, but does that mean Bethesda has something Fallout or Elder Scrolls related up its sleeve for the show after all? For Fallout, likely not. But for Elder Scrolls? Those chances are definitely higher. Keep in mind that the studio recently took the franchise on the MMORPG route with The Elder Scrolls Online, and a console port is in the works, so that'll be a tough one for Bethesda to keep quiet about as per the "memo." Still, the company reps along with Hines are quite good at keeping quiet, so expect more of the same in the days to come.

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