A serious hack was recently deployed against Apex Legends – but not to cheat or win games. Instead, the hacker created a new playlist name, sending players to a website about saving Titanfall. Within 24 hours, Respawn was able to deploy a fix and restore matchmaking.
Titanfall, primarily the first game but Titanfall 2 to a lesser extent, has been plagued by DDoS attacks preventing anyone from playing the game. The problem has been ongoing for over two years.
Respawn have posted messages explaining that they are working to fix the problem, but so far, no long-term solutions have been identified.
As a result, a vigilante hacker took over Apex Legends on July 4, with a series of messages pointing players to a website dedicated to “saving Titanfall.”
‘Save Titanfall’ hack on Apex Legends
Players started noticing the messages on the morning of Sunday, July 4.
The name of the playlist was updated, claiming that it was a ‘new mode available.’ The playlist itself was renamed to ‘SAVETITANFALL.COM | BRUH’, and was accompanied by the message “TF1 is being attacked so is Apex.”
As one clip shows, players were unable to queue up for other game modes at all.
🔗 https://t.co/fy468gVHEZ pic.twitter.com/NctpKCI68M
— 😪 (@YungLucianOG) July 4, 2021
Additionally, players were also greeted by an ‘Important Message’ at the end of games, instructing them to visit and repost the website.
The website in question, savetitanfall.com, stated: “Titanfall is a beloved franchise by many, and hacker issues have been at rise. The Titanfall community has been begging Respawn to fix this issue for over three years, but to no avail. Today this game is still being sold, while being completely unplayable. It’s time we speak up.”
The website also alleged that selling Titanfall in its current state “without fixing the different issues and ignoring their customers is an act of fraud.”
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“Nowhere on the Origin or Steam store listings does it say that the game is unplayable, and from the reviews, you can see that many people met the same fate of buying an unplayable game.”
In May, Respawn said they were “aware” of the hacking issues in Titanfall, and were investigating. Respawn’s director of comms, Ryan Rigney, has said that they have spoken with some of the hackers and simply asked them to stop.
However, Respawn is in a constant battle, taking “weeks of work” to address “each new stupid thing” that the hackers do to ruin the classic FPS game.
I wish all the hackers/cheaters/malicious actors who ruin games would find more fulfilling hobbies. Why use your talent to tear communities apart?
The situation affecting the Titanfall games right now is so frustrating. Weeks of work required to address each new stupid thing.
— Ryan K. Rigney (@RKRigney) May 25, 2021
Respawn responds to DDOS attack
Respawn first responded to the incident hours later on Twitter. What began as a simple ‘investigation’ into the situation at hand, took more than six hours of hard work to resolve. The devs quickly worked on a fix to restore matchmaking to its original form, without the hacked playlist.
After various tests, a server update began to roll out at 6PM PT on July 4.
“We’ve confirmed that matchmaking has been restored,” confirmed Respawn an hour later, once the patch had hit servers around the world.
We’ve confirmed that matchmaking has been restored. We’re keeping an eye on things but believe the issue to be resolved.
Thanks for your patience, Legends.
— Respawn (@Respawn) July 5, 2021
For now, Apex Legends should be working as intended. However, the devs are continuing to monitor the situation for any lingering effects of the hack.