Nintendo reveals that the early shipment of a Nintendo Switch console this week, which resulted in a user interface leak, was actually the result of theft from a distributor.
Although Nintendo has managed to keep many details about the Nintendo Switch a secret from the gaming community, there has been the occasional accidental reveal of features. One such example came earlier this week, when a gamer claimed to have received a Switch two weeks early, and promptly uploaded a video of the system's user interface online. However, Nintendo has now revealed that there was likely little accidental about this system falling into a user's hands early.
Instead, Nintendo has claimed that the early arrival of this Switch console was actually the result of a number of systems being stolen. In a statement from the company to IGN, Nintendo confirmed that a number of Switch units were stolen from an American distributor, with one then being resold in advance of the official Switch launch date of March 3, 2017.
"Earlier this week, individuals claimed to prematurely purchase a small number of Nintendo Switch systems from an unspecified retailer," explained Nintendo in the statement. "Nintendo has determined these units were stolen in an isolated incident by employees of a U.S. distributor, with one system being illegally resold." This apparently explains how the Switch made its way into the open, rather than through a distribution error.
Those responsible for the theft have also been discovered. "The individuals involved have been identified, terminated from their place of employment and are under investigation by local law enforcement authorities on criminal charges," Nintendo confirmed. Meanwhile, at least one of the Switch consoles that made it into the wild has since been returned, as the NeoGAF user responsible for the UI video leak did not feel comfortable keeping the system once he realised it had been stolen.
The UI leak was not the only accidental release of information that has happened for the console. The alleged specs of the Switch appeared online this month from an unknown source, while Nintendo itself was responsible for the accidental reveal of developer-only menus after uploading an unfinished promo video to YouTube. However, the company certainly seems to have strong control over information reveals overall.
Because of this, it's still likely that gamers will get their best look at the Switch when it actually launches at the beginning of March. So far, Nintendo fans have been excited about the release of the console, although Nintendo has had to defend a perceived weak launch lineup by some. Hopefully, the system will have something to match those great Nintendo launch titles of the past.
The Nintendo Switch will launch worldwide on March 3, 2017.