Japanese game publisher Bandai Namco has suspended downloads of its recently launched Gundam Metaverse amid rumors of a major leak.
“We are sorry that downloading the client files has been temporarily suspended,” an October 18 announcement said.
“We will inform you on this website when the download will be available again. Please continue to use “Metaverse Easy Access” to purchase limited edition Gunpla.”
Gundam Metaverse is designed as a project for Bandai Namco and fans to cooperate in developing and managing a community with the aim of creating future Gundam projects, the website says.
The news of halting the downloads came suddenly, as the game was launched just this month.
The Gundam Metaverse was scheduled to be open for a limited time in Japan and the US.
The ‘Early Access’ period opened for a limited number of users on October 5, followed by the ‘General Access’ period for the public on October 11.
According to a press release, visitors were able to explore a 3D world of the Gundam anime, including a store featuring six different types of Gundam Plastic models (aka Gunmpla) and a space for digital live performances by Gundam series-related artists.
Rumors of Design Leaks
The company did not provide an explanation for its decision to stop downloads.
But even before the announcement was made, posts spread online that the game downloads included unencrypted design files related to specific models for ‘Gundam Seed Freedom’.
The rumors started as early as mid-September: a Weibo user claimed that the images they had shared show the ‘Freedom Gundam’ and ‘Justice Gundam’ designs, set to debut in ‘Gundam Seed Freedom’.
‘Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Freedom’ is an upcoming mecha animated film produced by Bandai Namco Filmworks and directed by Mitsuo Fukuda, scheduled for release on January 26, 2024.
The film will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Gundam SEED franchise, as it is a sequel to ‘Mobile Suit Gundam SEED’ (2002-2003) and ‘Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny’ (2004-2005).
Gunpla models are released to celebrate the film’s screening in January.
With all this said, the alleged leak would be a massive deal.
According to HK01,
“There were a large number of 3D model CAD [computer-aided design] files of Gundam models hidden inside [a download], including 2024-only 3D model CAD files.”
Some people uploaded pictures, the report says, claiming to have successfully printed the parts with a 3D printer and assembled them into the models.
The files of Gundam Metaverse were “unsecured and unencrypted,” resulting in some of the CAD files being leaked to the public, Reddit user Zentrova posted.
Cryptonews has reached out to Bandai Namco for a comment.
Check out the Gundam Metaverse Project promotional video below.
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