redinhardt wrong
Reinhardt with the wrong hammer, has to be a new feature! -reddit community imgur

Tricking the entire Overwatch subreddit into thinking a new feature is coming to the game is a lot easier than you’d think. All you need is to photoshop two Overwatch skins together, post them to a forum and wait for some user hungry enough to pick up the bait. Everyone wants glory, or just a little bit of reddit karma.

Here’s how the Overwatch subreddit got tricked this time.

On Monday morning, a user on r/overwatch posted that he/she had proof that swappable skins would be coming to the game. The post used a picture found on Imgur and showed the normal Reinhardt skin holding a Golden axe from the Bloodhart skin. The subreddit exploded, upvoting the post and gushing about how it has to be real. YouTube videos started to pop up, created by Overwatch news vultures like Ohnickel and UnitLost. It didn’t matter that a similar idea had just hit the front page of reddit a few days before or that it looked heavily photoshopped, it had to be real because rowdy mobs always do their research.

The very next day, another user posted on the Overwatch subreddit taking credit for posting the original picture and had proof. Yuren said that he created the image because he wanted to practice using Gimp 2, a free editing software. “This is not for seeking attention for myself, but to raise attention for the idea itself,” Yuren wrote. The original reddit post has since been removed, either because it was proven fake or the Overwatch sub moderators deemed it too “controversial.”

The Overwatch subreddit has been on a “leak” hype train for the past few weeks. After a 4chan user revealed Orisa before she was officially released, internet forum dwellers thinks they’ve found the next big crack in the Blizzard Titanic. Last week, another post on 4chan popped up from someone claiming to have worked on the Quality Assurance team for Overwatch. The same video vultures created content about this “leak” (and I’d be lying if I didn’t post about it as well. ) It doesn’t matter that these random comments could just be total bull shit, everyone’s already on to the next “leak” anyways.

I didn’t believe the picture was real. I’m not saying that as an “I told you so” but to say that you have to check your sources before “bandwagoning” for a cause. On the internet, anyone can make anything and a ton of people will believe that it’s true. I’ve dived down to the deepest parts of reddit and seen how easy it is for them to get fooled. Anyone can create the next grainy YouTube video that is totally about the next Overwatch event and not just two Tracers, a Reaper and a Symmetra shield stuck together in Adobe After Effects.