Technology

Fish Play Pokémon Scarlet And Violet, Commits Credit Card Fraud

A Magikarp scams someone by acting as the IRS. There is also a phone?

Image: Nintendo / PNGWing / Kotaku / designer491 (Getty Images)

A YouTuber created an alternative Nintendo Switch controller for their pet fish, which allows them to play video games on livestream. That fish managed to spend real money on some digital purchases while trying to beat a gym leader in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet (h/t: GamesRadar). And all of this happened because Scarlet and Violet are so buggy that they can sometimes cause the game to crash to the home page.

Mutekimaru Channel is a popular Japanese YouTuber who streams fish playing video games via an assistive device—an initiative that was intended to help viewers stay home during the pandemic. When a fish swims over a certain area of the “controller,” the game registers it as a specific button input. It’s not just one fish playing Pokémon either. The owner of the channel rotates fish every twelve hours in order to keep them healthy.

If the entire story stopped at “a fish was playing Pokémon on stream,” then I would have been suitably impressed. But no, the fish took things a step further. Not only have multiple fish managed to travel through towns and the wilderness with a specialized controller, they have even managed to spend its owner’s real-life money. I’m a little afraid to think about what else these fish might be capable of. Armed robbery?

ライブ配信でペットの魚にクレジットカード情報を公開され、挙句の果てに決済されてしまった件について

Normally, only one fishy gamer is allowed into the Switch tank at any given time. Once the owner walked away from the game, multiple fish took over and planned their nefarious heist.

The fish had been in the middle of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, but the game crashed due to its infamous performance issues. Once the fish was taken to the main Nintendo Switch home page, they managed to open the eshop, where its owner’s credit card information had been saved (and doxxed as a result).

The fish added 500 yen into their owner’s account. Then it used the resulting Nintendo gold coins (a loyalty reward from digital purchases) to buy a golfing cosmetic from Nintendo Switch Sports. According to Sora News 24, the owner intends to request a refund from Nintendo.

Be careful out there, gamers. Not only can hackers and other unscrupulous types get your credit card information, so can common pet fish. So don’t put your credit card number on shared devices!

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