A hacker has claimed responsibility for an incident yesterday in which World of Warcraft players across Europe dropped dead in their thousands.
The entire populations of Stormwind, Orgrimmar, Tarren Mill, Ragnaros, Draenor and Twisting Nether – both avatiars and NPCs – were wiped out completely for about four hours.
Users were generally phlegmatic – or even amused – about the virtual carnage.
Game developer Blizzard has apologized for the problem, which it says was caused by a hacker, and says it’s got it fixed.
“This exploit has already been hotfixed, so it should not be repeatable. It’s safe to continue playing and adventuring in major cities and elsewhere in Azeroth,” it says in a statement.
“As with any exploit, we are taking this disruptive action very seriously and conducting a thorough investigation.”
What appears to have happened is that one or more Level 1 characters was able to execute a script that invoked a spell called Aura of God to kill everyone around. Blizzard’s asking anybody with information to get in touch at email@example.com.
However, ‘Jadd’ has already claimed responsibility for the hack on the Ownedcore forum.
“We didn’t do any permanent damage. Some people liked it for a new topic of conversation and a funny stream to watch (sodapoppin), and some people didn’t. The people who didn’t should be blaming Blizzard for not fixing it faster (4 hours of obvious use is sad),” he says.
“It’s not like I added 20000000 gold to everyone’s inventory, and broke the economy; but look at the big Chinese gold seller companies, who are doing this every day. Now ask yourself who is really ruining the game. It’s not us.”