Respawn has been battling hackers in its online games for some time, but the situation recently escalated when hackers blocked players from accessing Apex Legends to complain about hacking in Titanfall. And unfortunately, the saga seems to have an impact on Respawn’s development plans, with work on at least one long-awaited feature for Apex Legends, cross-progression, slowed by the recent onslaught of attacks.
Earlier this week, Apex Legends game director Chad Grenier responded to a question about cross-progression on Twitter, explaining that “recent hacks on Apex and TF have slowed progress for it”
In development, although recent hacks on Apex and TF have slowed the progress of it when we switch to solving problems with live games.
– Chad Grenier (@ChadGrenier) July 10, 2021
Although cross-platform games were implemented in Apex Legends last year, players have so far not been able to transfer progress between accounts on different platforms (apart from moving between Steam and Origin). It’s a feature the team seems eager to introduce, with Grenier explaining via Reddit that implementing it will be “much more difficult after launch since users may have multiple accounts to merge or use”. Given the ongoing hacking issues in the Apex Legends and Titanfall games, it sounds like it may take some time before we see this feature implemented.
This is not the first time Respawn has discussed the impact of DDoS attacks and hacks on the development plan: in response to a wave of DDoS attacks on the Titanfall Games in May, Communications Director Ryan K. Rigney described the situation as “frustrating”, elaborating that it takes “weeks of work to tackle every new stupid thing”.
“Instead of delivering new values, building incredible things for players, we have people tearing our hair out and digging into the latest exploits, the new kind of attacks, a new way of targeting streamers, or senior lobbies, or all,” he added. “Weeks of work thrown away.”
Meanwhile, it seems that Titanfall 2 is once again being targeted by hackers. Last night, players reported that the game’s PC servers had been completely broken down, although many players now report that the servers are back online. There are reports that the hacker decided to “release” the servers to allow users to play again, but that the servers could be brought down again at any time (via Apex Legends News).
Respawn recently updated players on plans to crack down on Apex Legends cheaters, explaining that it hired more people to manually ban hackers – along with developing more tools to automatically detect DDoS attacks.