Last month, hackers took over Apex Legends for a brief period of time to supposedly encourage the developers at Respawn Entertainment to "save" Titanfall. Both Titanfall games, over the last few months especially, have suffered hacks and DDOS attacks leaving them in a bit of a state. At first glance, it would seem the folks participating in the Apex hack were the good guys who only turned to hacking to trying to raise awareness of their troubles. Nope. It turns out the very same group behind the Apex attack are allegedly the cause of Titanfall's issues too, and it's apparently all part of a messy plot to revive the cancelled spin-off, Titanfall Online.
For context, the original Titanfall has had trouble on PC for years with hackers and ongoing DDOS attacks. In May, Titanfall 2 suffered similarly, causing a number of players and streamers to voice their concerns online, and Respawn told them "help is coming".
Well, for some fans, help wasn't coming soon enough. As reported by Apex Legends News, on July 4th, hackers managed to advertise the site "SaveTitanfall.com" on a playlist in the lobby in Apex Legends. "TF1 is being attacked so is Apex," read a little message on screen. At the time, it seemed a separate group of hackers were just trying to bring more attention to Titanfall's woes, but it somehow turned out to be a lot more complicated than that.
To start with, the people who run the website SaveTitanfall.com denied involvement in the Apex hack, and last week released a lengthy document and a folder of evidence implicating a number of hackers that are involved in all this drama (including screenshots of Discord messages, emails, texts, Twitter threads and more). It's a huge community investigation that claims that certain members of the Remnant Fleet Discord server (a Titanfall community group that are associated with SaveTitanfall.com) were leading "coordinated attacks" on Titanfall, Titanfall 2, and Apex Legends.
The named hackers in the report include "p0358" (a "self-proclaimed 'good hacker'" who previously wrote a popular Medium post on How To Fix Titanfall), "RedShield" (an admin of Remnant Fleet who played "a major hand" in planning the SaveTitanfall drama), "dogecore" and "Mr Steyk" (who both make and sell cheats for games like Apex).
"Originally, SaveTitanfall.com was a partnership between different Titanfall communities united to bring attention to the state of the game(s) and give accurate information about the problems," the report says. "Unfortunately, they decided to put their personal goals - promoting their server and personal Titanfall community project - above the good of the game and instead took advantage of the hard work of others when it was convenient for them."
The report claims that p0358 was behind much of TF1 and TF2's hacking troubles, and was allegedly working to break the games in a wild plot to revive Titanfall Online, a free-to-play game that was being developed by Nexon for Asian markets until its cancellation in 2018. In order to finish the project, it's claimed p0358 needed access to Titanfall's source code, so after allegedly hacking the games, he would offer fixes in order to get Respawn to give it to him.
Since the community report came out, both RedShield and p0358 have denied the allegations made against them. In a Discord screenshot posted to Reddit, RedShield said: "I'd like to let everyone know that we're not behind Titanfall 1 attacks, Titanfall 2 attacks, Apex Legends attacks." p0358 posted a similar sentiment on Twitter:
"I did everything I could to save Titanfalls. And now a bunch of liars is persuading the community that I am the very person I fought against, claiming that I am responsible for any Titanfall or Apex attacks. I am not."
So to sum up: the allegations are that a bunch of hackers spent months attacking Titanfall so they could pose as good guys looking to fix the hacks and get access to Titanfall's source code. They went so far as attack an entirely seperate game, Apex Legends, to bring attention to what was happening in Titanfall. This backfired because the Titanfall community discovered the alleged scheme.. But the supposed hackers deny these claims. Phew. Video games, man.
I've contacted Respawn for comment, and will update this post when I hear back.