UPDATE 3 - And the first Fallout 4 trailer is here. And there's a lot more gameplay in it than you might think - and a talking protagonist:
Starting out with a similar technique to the classic Fallout 3, the trailer starts with a slow pan around a ruined faux-'50s home to the tune of The Ink Spots' "It's All Over But The Crying", while a Dogmeat replacment sniffs around. But, unlike war, trailers do change.
Flashbacks to the home in more peaceful times cut in, before giving way to a series of shots of a far more colourful Wasteland than we're used to. Previous screenshot rips both make their way into the mix, meaning the game is at least partially set in Boston.
And, finally, we see a new Vault Dweller, this time from Vault 111, who talks to his dog. Truly, next-gen has arrived. Check out our analysis video below for more.
UPDATE 2 - The Fallout 4 website just went live ahead of yesterday's countdown clock schedule - and has since gone down again. There was only one thing missing: a trailer. It should all pop up again at the 7am PT / 10am ET / 3pm BST deadline we were expecting.
As for details we do have, the game will be coming to PC, Xbox One and PS4. And it's a strictly new-gen proposition, it seems - the rumoured Xbox 360 and PS3 editions are nowhere to be seen. Then there's this background image (click to expand):
Brotherhood of Steel armour, a dog that looks suspiciously like Fallout 3's Dogmeat, Nuka Cola, Pip Boy, a broken Mr. Handy, skill magazines and a selection of familiar guns all suggest that major elements of the previous games will be returning. Not to mention that the website's tagline 'Welcome Home' suggests we won't be seeing a drastic reinvention of the Wasteland.
Twitter user @tomasduda managed to grab what amounts to the first full screenshot of the game - and it includes Dogmeat too. I'm hoping for a Dead to Rights style controllable attack dog. Not enough of those about.
Finally, a moody image purporting to be the thumbnail for the upcoming announcement trailer has been floating around - and its mention of Scollay Square (at the top) appears to confirm a Boston location for the game:
UPDATE - Fallout 4 is definitely coming. In fact, it's almost here. Our Twitter sirens sounded moments ago when Bethesda tweeted a new version of the series' now-iconic "PLEASE STAND BY" screen. Our excitement cores went into meltdown when we discovered that the Fallout website bore the same image, but with a countdown timer that ends tomorrow at 7am PT / 10am ET / 3pm BST.
Of course, people are already delving into the nittiest, grittiest pieces of that website, and a couple of details have emerged. The page's error text is a neat little bit of lore-based fun:
"PA system failure has occured.
Shutdown of the Masterbrain has been authorized and all sensitive materials have been removed for security purposes.
Please attempt re-access. Have a pleasant day."
More interesting, though, is this little line of code: "". "Institute", of course, makes up 26.47% of the characters in "Massachusetts Institute of Technology" (not including spaces, I'm not an animal). MIT has been a major part of consistent rumours that the new game would be set in the nuclear wreckage of Boston.
We'll update you as and when we know more - and have a full story on the announcement come tomorrow.
ORIGINAL STORY - Fallout 4 is finally happening, judging by the imbroglio surrounding an alleged cinematic trailer. You may have seen reports about an artist's LinkedIn profile, which mentioned his work on the trailer. But it's easy to post something about an undisclosed project on LinkedIn - it's less easy to get a promotional firm to angrily confirm that it signed an NDA about it.
That's apparently what happened, as Destructoid reports that Mirada Studios, the promotional studio which the artist linked to the Fallout 4 trailer, has cited a breach of a non-disclosure agreement and demanded the site remove its coverage of the artist's profile. Destructoid says it never signed an NDA about this stuff, but since an NDA apparently exists, so does Mirada's work with Bethesda.
And yes, confirming a project's existence to outside parties is pretty much the exact opposite of what an NDA is supposed to do. Whoops!
The artist's LinkedIn profile noted that he worked on the Fallout 4 cinematic trailer from December 2014 to March 2015. Though that doesn't mean work on the trailer itself was finished by then, that would line up nicely with Bethesda's planned E3 press conference in June, leaving plenty of time for everyone involved to sign off on it.
That's just speculation, of course - Bethesda could choose not to headline its first-ever E3 showcase with one of its most beloved video game franchises. It could also reboot Doom as a city-building mobile game, which, at this point, seems about as likely as not seeing the next Fallout at E3 2015.