Former Cryptic employee reveals story of how City of Heroes assets and source code accidentally ended up on players’ computers

    
13

Hey, you guys remember that time that City of Heroes accidentally pushed all of the game’s assets and source code into a patch, then tried to sneakily wipe it from players’ computers before they realized what had happened? Neither do we, but according to an email sent to the Giant Bomb podcast, it totally did.

According to an anonymous former Cryptic employee who wrote into the show, the devs once accidentally dropped a patch that included all of the game’s files, including the original 3D Studio Max files and the game’s source code, and they only realized their mistake once players started complaining about the size of the download. They quickly rectified the situation and pushed out a new patch that would remove the accidentally-downloaded assets from players’ computers, but apparently one player got wise to what had happened and stored all the files away in a secure location, earning him- or herself a call from Cryptic’s CEO.

Although the player in question presumably deleted the contraband files, for all we know, maybe they’re still stashed away on a hard drive somewhere, ready to be turned into a fully functioning private server. We can dream, right? For the full story, as well as similar tale involving the now-defunct Lego Universe, you can check out the Giant Bombcast video below — the relevant section begins around 2:30:00.

Source: Giant Bombcast. Thanks to Agemyth for the tip!
newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:
Reader
Loyal Patron
Neurotic

One thing I’ll never miss about CoX were the insanely huge patches they’d put out. Really taxed my connection, and my patience! :D

Pepperzine
Reader
Pepperzine

Is there any evidence to this claim? A patch number perhaps? Anything at all? Till then, I’ll file this in the unsubstantiated rumor pile.

Reader
wratts

It’s been over a decade, but I feel like I do vaguely remember one day shortly after launch there was an absolutely massive patch that I let download overnight, and then being annoyed as hell when I went to launch the next day and it needed another. I’d bet I missed my opportunity to copy off the sourcebase

camren_rooke
Reader
camren_rooke

I’ve still got my original install….wonder if I have all that info?

packagegrope
Reader
packagegrope

if it was only one player, then it would be obvious who leaked the files. if more than one person did this, come ooooooon doooooooown. be the savior we all need!

xpsync
Reader
xpsync

Glad to see their casts are still epic length, these guys are the best listen in the podcast biz; like Bree and Justin ofc ;)

I think it’s time to start listening to podcasts again, took a break for the last year or two.

Always load Bombcast and MOP for the commute to and fro from work, just need a regular weekly Warframe podcast and i’d be all set. Edit: Found “Tenno Clock” on soundcloud they seem pretty consistent.

Mizusyu
Reader
Mizusyu

thanks could use a good warframe podcast

Reader
Hikari Kenzaki

There have been a few ‘anonymous Cryptic employees’ spreading false rumors and information lately, including a blatant lie about how Paragon Studios was supposedly at fault for the CoH shutdown for trying to ‘pull a fast one’ on NCSoft.

I’m not sure what the intention of these recent ‘revelations’ are, but since I know a handful of former Cryptic/Paragon employees, I take this with a grain of salt.

kjempff
Reader
kjempff

The story at least raises a logic question.. How would they know if some random person copied files on his computer? And, Got a call from the CeO..where did that phone number appear from?

Reader
Hikari Kenzaki

Well, Cryptic would have the phone number of the subscriber and the checksum file would be able to verify and report back that the extra data had been patched out properly, but yes it would have been a serious privacy violation to find the files remaining on the one offending computer.

It’s a story that’s just plausible enough to make people think “oh, I could see that happening.”

I’m still coming down on the side of these claims being baseless. Just not sure why the sudden interest. It’s like an AI was forced to read MMO news and then come up with tips…

Reader
Dread Quixadhal

Why would they have the phone number of the subscriber?

Even if they paid via credit card, such information isn’t generally needed, and even when asked for, many people will just put random data because they don’t feel like getting telemarketing calls.

As I recall, you could purchase the game with cash in a store (remember those?), and then buy game time cards, so the only valid piece of data you would HAVE to give cryptic/ncsoft would be a valid email address to register your game’s CD key to an account.

Reader
Matthew Yetter

If someone has your name and address (which they would have since Cryptic did their own billing) it’s really not hard to get your number, unless that number is unlisted.

Reader
Life_Isnt_Just_Dank_Memes

Hilarious! I was just listening to this as I was gardening not 20 minutes ago. The stuff about the Lego MMO right after that were pretty funny too. Great pod about games. Been a staple in my rotation for the better part of a decade along with the MOP pod.