Now that things have cooled down slightly, the hoaxer behind the Fallout 4 Survivor2299.com hoax has surfaced giving details of why and how the site came about.
Addressing the community, he revealed that the campaign was created to possibly force Bethesda to reveal Fallout 4 at the VGX awards which have just wrapped up. The plan was to release a CGI trailer when the clock hit zero but it appears he bottled out early following comments made by Bethesda on Twitter confirming they were not associated with the site.
The cryptic codes and messages that appeared over the last few weeks were apparently taken from a script the hoaxer had put together called “The Survivor” which took around 700 hours to write and was supposed to be used for a Fallout New Vegas DLC mod. It also took around an hour to create each Morse code and cipher for the hoax.
This was not a cheap hoax however, it cost around $1000 to pull off. The hoaxer explained that it cost “Hosting: 30$ Traffic (15TB) 60$ Phone number: Approx 900$. Domain 12$”.
The individual had servers set up in Germany, Poland, USA, Spain and Italy to help send fans off his trail. He said that the site was “discovered way too early” and that he wanted to have the IP address look like it was hosted at Bethesda HQ.
When quizzed about stopping the campaign early he added:
“When Pete Hines said TS2299 is fake and then I gave up. That was stupid move. I’m one of these ‘selfish bastards with a lot of money’ so I wanted to release a CGI Trailer. But Pete Killed my plans. Maybe I’ll release it later along with the script, so somebody else can use it!”
Will any of his work see the light of day? Apparently it may be released some time after the 11 November on his website but he want to “let things cool off a little. I don’t wan’t to piss off Bethesda at this time even more.”
The hoax really did bring the Fallout community together which was his intention.
“I wanted to force Bethesda to reveal something during VGX/ on 12/11, and bring /r/Fallout community together (for at least 3 weeks) Unfortunately, this plan Failed” said the hoaxer.
It’s been a wild but fun ride over the past few weeks and it was an excellently executed hoax, one of the most solid I can remember, even if there were many clues to it being a fake. The passion of the Fallout community really helped keep this one running and running.
Should Bethesda have stopped it earlier than they did? That’s something the community are pretty split on but publishers usually don’t comment on rumours or speculation. Perhaps with the VGX awards happening today Bethesda though enough was enough. The hoaxer did confirm Bethesda had contacted him today.