Skip to main content

How did multiple unannounced games leak through the Epic Games Store?

Final Fantasy 16's cover showcasing its protagonist infront of two demon summons.
Square Enix

In an event not seen since numerous video games leaked through Nvidia GeForce Now, a third-party tool accidentally exposed a bunch of listings on the Epic Games Store. A website called EpicDB featured public pages for a bunch of unannounced titles from Square Enix, Sony, Sega, Saber Interactive, and many other publishers.

While a lot of what people found were codenames Tuesday night, going through the metadata and looking at related files revealed a lot about what they could actually be. The story is a bit confusing, so let’s break down exactly what went down, what games leaked, and what steps Epic is already taking to prevent it from happening again.

So, what happened?

EpicDB is an Epic Games Store equivalent of SteamDB, an unofficial database of everything on the digital games platform. Valve doesn’t publicly release sales data, but you can glean a lot from SteamDB’s charts and lists, which provide a more detailed view of how games are doing on Steam. It’s a great way to see if player count is spiking, what has been wishlisted the most, and how games do over multiple years.

SteamDB only lists games that have live store pages. That didn’t happen with EpicDB, which listed pages that were registered but hadn’t been pushed online yet. Gaming fans quickly caught on, leading to a wave of unintentional leaks.

What leaked?

Quite a bit actually. A number of unannounced AAA projects were listed. A user on ResetEra posted a number of screenshots, noting that if you search through publishers on the database, you’ll see every release registered through the Epic Games Store. Some are more obvious than others; there appears to be a Turok remake coming from Saber Interactive, with a listing that was created just last month called simply “Turok.”

Many of them are listed under codenames. On the Sony Interactive Entertainment page, there are listings with the codenames “Utah” and “RhodeIsland.” Many have speculated that RhodeIsland refers to a The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered PC port. Meanwhile, over on Square Enix Japan’s page, you have games with the codenames “Skobeloff” and “Momo.”

EpicDB (a SteamDB equivalent) launched and appears to be leaking many unannounced projects under codenames

Some of the listings include
-FFXVI (Skobeloff)
-FFIX Remake (Momo) with a Tetra Master Starter Pack & Thief's Knives bonus
-Turok from Saber

— Wario64 (@Wario64) June 12, 2024

Releases beyond just the games themselves were also listed. For example, Momo has multiple extras listed, including preorder items, a digital soundtrack, and a deluxe upgrade. These specifically help determine that Momo is likely a Final Fantasy 9 remake, since the names make multiple references to the game (the Thief’s Knives preorder bonus refers to a Final Fantasy weapon that appears in Final Fantasy 9, for example). Skobeloff was listed with three pieces of DLC, which led to theories that it’s a PC port of Final Fantasy 16.

All of this should be taken with a grain of salt. Codenames can be rather random, so they might not connect so obviously to projects. Anything pulled from the leaks should be taken as rumor for now.

Has Epic responded?

Epic got to work, and within a few hours, released a patch to its platform. That likely means that it won’t happen again anytime soon — at least not on Epic’s watch.

“We released an update tonight so third-party tools can’t surface any new unpublished product titles from the Epic Games Store catalogue,” a spokesperson from the company told multiple outlets.

What happens to EpicDB now?

The future of the database is unclear. At the time of this writing, heading to the URL shows the server is down. It’ll need some work before it can come back online. It shouldn’t stop publishers from using Epic’s platform, but it could always lead to heightened security and even vaguer codenames for added secrecy.

Carli Velocci
Carli is a technology, culture, and games editor and journalist. They were the Gaming Lead and Copy Chief at Windows Central…
Rockstar Games’ co-founder just formed an ‘absurd’ new studio
A man drives away in a boat with stolen money in Grand Theft Auto 5 art.

Dan Houser, a co-founder of Rockstar Games and one of the people behind the creation of series like Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption, has unveiled his new studio, Absurd Ventures.

Dan Houser was a stalwart figure at Rockstar Games since its founding and had a hand in the creative aspects of pretty much every game in the Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption series, along with other titles like Bully and Max Payne 3. Following an "extended break" following the release of Red Dead Redemption 2, as well as some controversy surrounding some reported issues with the game's creative development, Rockstar Games' parent company Take-Two Interactive announced that Houser had left the company in early 2020. He's had a relatively low-profile since then outside of serving on the board of a blockchain company, but now looks to be fully invested in Absurd Ventures, a company he technically founded in 2021.
Absurd Ventures is finally being revealed more publicly now, and Houser did so with an intentionally absurd announcement trailer and website with the tagline "Storytelling, Philanthropy, Ultraviolence." According to a tweet by Geoff Keighley, the actual main goal of Absurd Ventures is "building narrative worlds, creating characters, and writing stories for a diverse variety of genres, without regard to medium, to be produced for live-action and animation, video games and other interactive content, books, graphic novels, and scripted podcasts."
Absurd Ventures
It seems like Houser wants to make a creative think tank that can craft ideas that are then realized in a variety of creative mediums. It doesn't seem quite like any other game developer or movie studio out there, so it will be very interesting to see what the minds at Absurd Ventures are eventually able to come up with.

Read more
Epic Game Store fights back against review bombs with new user rating system
Epic Games Store user rating system

People review-bombing games even before they're released is a common problem on sites like Metacritic. To combat this, Epic Games announced that it's come out with a new user rating system on the Epic Games Store that should address the issues.

The Fortnite maker said on Friday it updated its digital gaming storefront with the user rating system to ensure its games receive direct feedback from the community as they're playing them. It works like this: Epic will randomly ask players to score a game on a five-star scale after playing a game for more than two hours. Their scores will be calculated into the game's overall score, which will appear on the game's Epic Games Store page to help other gamers determine whether or not it's worth playing.

Read more
Apple reveals how much it paid to App Store developers in 2021
App store icon showing three notifications.

Apple paid out a total of $60 billion dollars to App Store developers in 2021, data released by the tech giant this week revealed.

The company said that since the App Store’s launch in 2008, $260 billion has been paid to App Store developers globally, up from $200 billion a year earlier.

Read more