Honkai: Star Rail devs call out “terrible” leakers for spoiling story twists

Honkai: Star Rail devs call out "terrible" leakers for spoiling story twists 1

Developers of Honkai: Star Rail have called out the “terrible” leakers for spoiling the story in the previous 2.0 update.

Honkai: Star Rail is a free-to-play turn-based strategy role-playing game developed and published in China by miHoYo and published worldwide by HoYoverse. They are also responsible for creating games like Genshin Impact and Honkai Impact 3rd.

Players become the Trailblazers, who are set to travel to various planets and help resolve them with the Astral Express Crew. The latest planet where they could travel to is Penacony, which was released in the 2.0 update back on February 6, 2024. Players could experience the new world and its characters, such as Acheron, Aventurine, Black Swan, Sparkle, Firefly, and Sam.

Before releasing these updates, miHoYo and HoYoverse always host a Special Program that introduces the new featured characters and the events and rewards that will be available. The 2.1 live stream on their official YouTube and Twitch featured a question-and-answer portion where the developers addressed the leaks.

Dev calling out leakers time stamp: 1:13:59 (Honkai: Star Rail)

In the question-and-answer session, developers were asked: “Why do we always see future content on the internet before it’s officially released?” Shaoji, the narrative designer for the Honkai series, addressed this issue.

He answered that more attractive content garners more attention, which increases the chances of leaks. They shared that leaks disrupt the game’s storytelling and affect the players’ experiences, whether they sought after these leaks or accidentally stumbled upon them.

“Once something is leaked, its spread becomes even more uncontrollable,” Shaoji commented. “The situation affects both players who want to see it and those who don’t. When we’re telling a story, what is the most important thing besides the content itself? It’s how we tell it.”

“Even in the process of storytelling, I have to adjust my way of storytelling based on my audience’s reactions, our respective knowledge bases, and how much we can understand each other. It’s all about achieving a happy outcome for both sides. That’s the true meaning of communication and connection. It’s unfortunate that leaks can disrupt this process.”

Honkai: Star Rail devs
TT and Shaoji in the 2.1 Honkai: Star Rail livestream (Honkai: Star Rail)

“What’s the leaks’ biggest impact?” It’s that this process, which should have been very pleasant, gets brutally interrupted. Sometimes, we even see that some leakers, whether intentionally or not, are creating conflicts because their process of telling the story is inappropriate, leading to discord and misunderstandings among players. It sows confusion and disputes among many people, including ourselves and innocent players.”

They shared that a massive leak for version 2.0 occurred in September 2023, insinuating spoilers about character models, concept art, and storylines in the Penacony arc. This greatly affected the team, as the main storyline of version 2.0 involved many twists and revelations.

“Version 2.0 has already been released, and by now, I’m sure everyone knows that in terms of characters, storyline, stages, and gameplay, we’ve prepared a lot of surprises, both big and small,” Shaoji continued. “Among these surprises, there may be deceitful narratives, as well as twists and revelations.”

“However, we imagined that it would be presented to players in the most perfect and best possible form. We imagined what kind of spectacle it would be and what kind of joyful emotions we would share with the players on that day. But in September 2023, it wasn’t as ideal as we hoped. It leaked out in a very terrible way—an ignorant, savage, crude way. “

Honkai: Star Rail devs call out "terrible" leakers for spoiling story twists 2
Shaoji reflects on the “terrible” leaks from September 2023

Despite the dev team’s sadness, Shaoji explained that Honkai: Star Rail is a long-running project, and new players who join after launch would’ve been spoiled about parts of the story. He urges the team to shift their focus to allowing new players to enjoy and appreciate the story despite spoilers.

Shaoji also shared that there is still much content in both versions 2.1 and 2.2 that hasn’t leaked. Kirin, the substitute host, was worried that he’d jinx it and that leaks would soon follow, but Shaoji believed it was important to talk about it and that they shouldn’t be afraid of such matters. The narrative designer believes that the new content for 2.1 and 2.2 will be presented in the way they hope.

Honkai: Star Rail version 2.1 is expected to be released on March 27, 2024. Will you be pulling for Acheron, Aventurine, and Gallagher?

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