World of Warcraft perseveres under weekend DDoS attacks, WoW Classic fixes layering exploits

    
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It was a pretty annoying weekend to be playing some of Blizzard’s titles — in particular, World of Warcraft Classic. Players noticed significant disruptions, lag, and loss of services due to a barrage of DDoS attacks on Saturday and Sunday.

“Today, Saturday, September 7, the World of Warcraft service has been negatively impacted by an ongoing distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack,” the studio posted on the forums. “For several hours today, we’ve repeatedly seen WoW realms targeted and taken offline by the attacker(s).”

Even as Blizzard was dealing with all of this, the studio targeted a different issue that was plaguing WoW Classic: exploits via layer hopping. To fix this, Blizzard slapped an increasing cooldown on layer switching for players using them to avoid excessive use.

“We recently developed a hotfix that restricts frequent layer-hopping, without impacting those who simply wish to play with their friends. Following realm restarts earlier today, this hotfix is now live in all realms in the Americas and Oceania region. Now, each time a player moves to a new layer, there will be an increasing amount of time before that player can move to another layer. If a player moves between layers multiple times over a short timeframe, the cooldown can increase to a duration of several minutes (or longer) before they can change layers again. The cooldown will then decrease over time for players who don’t change layers. This hotfix will become active in other regions following their next realm restarts.”

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Techno Wizard
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Techno Wizard

Layering still makes me wince. I don’t approve of DDoS attacks though, and never will.

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Jeremiah Wagner

Classic for life! Go ahead and hate , I will be playing the only real mmo out for as long as the servers are up.

cambruin
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cambruin

Same here! Yaarrrr!

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David Harrison

I completely agree.

TBC and ever expansion after it made World of Warcraft less a virtual world and more a game. They should rename it “Game of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth”.

Class balancing…. bad.

Looking For Raid… bad.

Instant queue and teleport to dungeon from anywhere… bad.

Eliminating the old talent trees… bad.

Arenas and PvP gear… bad.

One path, run from point A to point B dungeon designs… bad.

Running dungeons to collect tickets to take back to the Chuckee Cheese prize booth in town to get your equipment instead of having rare spawns with rare loot… BAD!

Flying mounts… bad.

Normalizing all hunter pets, so there’s no need to hunt for special animals to tame as your pet… BAD!

Never running out of mana… bad.

No fear of any content killing you as long as you have a pulse and half a brain cell functioning… bad.

I’m going to stop there because I could go on all day. Modern WoW is *NOTHING* like the original WoW.

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maydrock .

Haha, I do have to say I’ve died more in the last two weeks than the entirety of the 3 years I played ESO. Mostly from trying to sneak past mobs to get at gathering nodes. And they sit here and wonder why we want to play Classic when 95% of modern mmo’s are mind numbingly boring.

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Skoryy

ok

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David Harrison

People that do DDOS attacks are truly the scum of the Earth.

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Loopy

Luckily i managed to squeeze in some play time before the DDoS reached its peak. I feel bad for others who weren’t so lucky.

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Utakata

Was this layering a thing back in Vanilla? The pigtails are rather vague on the memories of that mechanic. >.<

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Patreon Donor
TheDonDude

No, they are new for Classic. You can thus imagine all the chitter chatter about it.

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Utakata

…well..I now have to ask, why was this mechanic introduced in Classic in the first place? I’m going presume it has something to do with making development and execution of Classic more efficient that wasn’t available around the time of Vanilla. o.O

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Reginald Bottomsworth

If I recall correctly, it’s to prevent ten-thousand people from doing the same quests on the same map.

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Patreon Donor
TheDonDude

Three main reasons:
1. Server stability: the game simply would crash under the weight of this number of players.
2. Population control: it’s impossible to quest with a bazillion players in the area.
3. Avoiding merges: the plan is to slowly remove layers as players drop off or play less often, hopefully bringing the servers to a healthy population without having to do merges.

Harry Koala
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Harry Koala

Basically because they have no idea what the population curve over time is going to look like for classic. It is unlike normal MMO launches, in that there is an existing population of 15+ million who have played the game in the past who may have varying degrees of interest in coming back to try it again, and there really isn’t any comparable data that can be used to make accurate predictions.

If they assume people are going to hang around, they spin up lots of servers, and maybe it turns out there are a lot of tourists who will stop playing after the first month. Result: dozens of servers that all have too low a population to be fun, to server mergers are needed.

If they go the other way and under-provide servers, then the result is lots of queues and over-crowding of starter zones (which is something that is always going to happen, simply because 99.9% of people who want to play classic are going to want to try it out in the first week of launch or so).

So they’ve gone for the middle ground of layering, which really amounts to invisible server merges that can be done dynamically in response to population levels. Then they can add or remove a few additional servers as they see what the demand looks like 2-4 months down the line. It avoids over-reaction headlines to adding or taking down lots of servers, and provides a more stable population level for people to interact with in game.

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styopa

Good explanation.

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Denice J. Cook

Layering of zones was instituted to keep the overpopulation of Classic players at a more manageable level. Most servers are so overpopulated that they still have queues during peak times even with maximum layering going on, and would downright combust if that layering was removed.

Unfortunately, shutting off layering was the original plan for Phase 2 of Classic, a plan which desperately needs changing at this point.

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Utakata

Thanks for explaining this everyone. I’ve now realized that Blizz in fact did recently do this to mitigate server pop explosions without having to merge servers potentially later on. Though the said pigtails didn’t make the connection till you folks answered my question. They now sit corrected on that. :)

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Jeremiah Wagner

Layering was not needed as badly in real vanilla since there was a big following , but not nearly as big as today’s. If there was 500,000 players logging in to vanilla in the first week , it would be 5,000,000 in the first week in classic.

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Lethality

haha, no.

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styopa

Would love to see the data to back up that refutation.

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Utakata

I can’t find that right now, I don’t think it was 5 mil for the first week. Though it did break a lot of records as far as MMO’s where concerned for the time.

It would help that both Mr. Wagner and Lethality would post citations to back up their claims either way though.