Special: Back savages back, that was not a euphemism!
On June 29, 2007 a Blogspot blogger named Surfer Girl began a very spartan blog called "Surfer Girl Reviews Star Wars."
Initially, she discussed politics in a fairly intelligent way while avoiding any mention of the holy trilogy. But it was her post on September 7th that thrust her into the video game spotlight. In that post she mentions Max Payne 3 is coming to the Xbox 360 and PS3 and reveals that brutallegend.com was registered to an employee of Double Fine.
On the surface, neither of these "scoops" are anything of the sort. Max Payne 3 has been rumored to be in development for years and anyone can perform a "whois" lookup. These are but the first in a long line of questionable "scoops" as today Surfer Girl's blog was transformed by a "hacker" who guessed her password and threatened to out her secrets to the entire world. For someone with the supposed deep connections that Surfer Girl has, this would have been a treasure trove of information. Enough to make even the most jaded fanboy weep with joy. But it was not to be as Surfer Girl regained her site several hours later after she guessed the new password the hacker attached to her account. All traces of the hacker's posts have been removed and life goes on for Surfer Girl. For now, we'll ignore the fact that the password the "hacker" bragged about guessing was only six characters long when Blogspot and Gmail require eight character passwords.
But will she ride a new wave of popularity or have all of Surfer Girl's posts been nothing been but sea stories like the one that got away?
Surfer Girl initially jumped to the forefront of video game insiders with her next post in early October which detailed L.A. Noire and Prince of Persia 4. These scoops were picked up by many major game sites including GameSpot and Kotaku, but once again, Surfer Girl's guesses were based on previously available information. About all Team Bondi has revealed about L.A. Noire is that it'll be set in 1947 and that it'll be stylistically accurate. Which is exactly what Surfer Girl's scoop said. As for Prince of Persia 4, the screenshots she released could be anything. They could be someone's graphic design homework for as much as they look like a PoP game. And we already know a new PoP game is in development because it was part of the great Ubisoft information leak of 2006
Surfer Girl has followed up these initial posts with a healthy mix of old news, obvious guesses and off the wall stuff that doesn't make any sense. In the old news category, Surfer Girl has scooped the world with the knowledge that Gun 2 is on hold, Darkwatch 2 is in development, The Getaway will be released next year, Retro Studios is working on a game that's not Metroid and that Heavy Rain has been in development for two years. Except Activision announced a long time ago that Gun 2 is on hold, High Moon Studios has talked about Darkwatch 2 before, Sony has always listed The Getaway as coming out next year, Retro Studios has said all along their next game would not involve Samus Aran and Heavy Rain was revealed at E3 2006, which by my count was a year and a half ago. Unless it sprung full form from Quantic Dream's brain on the first day of E3, it's been in development for years.
As for the obvious guesses, after the Prince of Persia 4 "reveal," Surfer Girl has gone on to claim that Forza Motorsport 3, Fight Night 2008, Resistance 2, Red Steel 2 and Twisted Metal PS3 are all in development. Wow, I wish I were as clairvoyant as Surfer Girl that I could guess that sequels to many of this generation and last generation's most popular games are in the works. She has also learned (through her vast network of undercover spies) that the company behind Bob Ross Painting still wants the game to happen and that Indiana Jones and Lego Indiana Jones are both coming out in 2008. Hmm, doesn't a new Indiana Jones movie come out in 2008?
Oh, and Street Fighter IV will be in 2D or 3D. Wow, that really narrows it down. I guess that means it won't be on the PS3, since according to Ken Kutaragi, that works in 4D.
It's important to note that in the five months Surfer Girl has been relaying inside information from every company under the sun out into the blogosphere, not a single one of her "scoops" has been confirmed by the companies. Sure, she came close with today's announcement that a Ghostbusters game is in development... except for the fact that executives at Zootfly confirmed their Ghostbusters prototype was canned because some other company was developing a Ghostbusters game. And all of this information has been on the Internet for months.
Woodward and Bernstein She Ain't
After today's implausible hacking stunt, I think it's time for gamers to face facts and admit that Surfer Girl is making it all up as she goes along. We so desperately want someone "on the inside" fighting for all those juicy video game rumors that we'll believe anything. Frankly, it's impossible for someone to have this many secret informants at so many different video game companies. And why would all of these digital age Deep Throats contact some random blogger? I think Surfer Girl has officially wiped out.
Hi Surfer Girl. Isn't that how it works? When a person or company notices an article, you say hello to them in an update? Yes, Surfer Girl has officially responded to my article on her blog in a grammatically suspect post titled November thirteenth things
Some guy at some website I never heard of throws a whinefest about how he never gets anything exclusive, how he cannot comprehend sarcasm, and how I am an evil, no good Satanist, all in the name of ad revenue or puppies and sunflower seeds or something. He is super credible man who submits the articles he writes to Digg. Fallacious, logically (and factually) erroneous beings go party tonight at the mansion. I'm officially amused.
I have to admit, I'm amused as well. Especially since Surfer Girl accused me of posting this as a hits grab and her link has brought in plenty of hits.
But I'm also throwing down the gauntlet. Go ahead Surfer Girl, prove to me and everyone else that any of your rumors have any real meat to them. Show me one
that has been confirmed that wasn't already out in the ether before.
Surfer Girl has posted a lengthy reply to my accusations on her blog
. I guess we'll never be best friends forever now because I posted a reply to her reply
(in which she still hasn't proved anything) last night.