Gamestop pulled the wool over the fighting game community’s eyes recently with a brilliant, yet sad, hoax.
The execution was perfect. Set up little “Karissa” against high caliber Super Smash Bros. players from the West Coast, and have her go beast mode on them. The crowd in the little store went insane as a ten year old girl seemingly destroyed players with more years experience than she’d had years of living.She seemed like a perfect Smash player using high level techniques, trash talking at an equally high level, and unfazed by the crowd.
Of course, it was perfect. Too perfect. The whole event was staged. Little Karissa was never in control of her character, as keen eyed viewers noted when she takes her hand off her controller to scratch her face and look away from the screen as her character continues to wreak havoc on opponents.
The audience and other players were mostly plants as well it seems. The casting call (above) found its way into the wild and has killed the dream. It was an incredibly well executed hoax because we’re not sure who was in on it or if the entirety of the event and subsequent terribly recorded phone video that was uploaded to Youtube was all part of the charade.
The raucous crowd and shaky footage made the act so convincing it fooled virtually everyone on the internet, as several sites, including The Game Fanatics, were caught hook, line, and sinker because the atmosphere created was so true to life. It overshadowed the tales, giving away little Karissa’s lack of control, and was like watching an EVO stream of Super Smash Bros., but smaller
I appreciate the hoax for how well it was done. I was completely fooled myself, but it is a little sad. You always want to see the unexpected, the birth of the next generation of players kicked off by a little girl beasting on the old blood of the Super smash Bros. community. This stings extra hard considering recent events in the gaming community. It would have been nice to have this little star showing that gamers come in all shapes, sizes, age groups and sexes.
Take a look at the guerrilla footage that made the play come to life: