A World of Warcraft hacker got loose on Sunday, flying around as a level 1 priest and killing thousands in cities across the game world with an instant-kill hack. In response, Blizzard quickly launched a hotfix Sunday, and issued the following apology on the official WoW forums:
“Earlier today, certain realms were affected by an in-game exploit, resulting in the deaths of player characters and non-player characters in some of the major cities. 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.
As with any exploit, we are taking this disruptive action very seriously and conducting a thorough investigation. If you have information relating to this incident, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. We apologize for the inconvenience some of you experienced as a result of this and appreciate your understanding.”
There are several theories about how the hack happened, but no clear answers yet. Some popular theories include: a rogue GM used some of the powers it had managed to salvage; an ability that allowed characters to kill those around them was incorrectly marked as public (thus allowing the exploit); and that the group behind the Battle.net exploit a few months ago did it.
However it happened, it has provided numerous amusing videos and images. Check out the video from the point of view of a hacker as he/she tries out the insta-kill ability. Then watch the action from the point of view of a player in a city when it got “nuked.” You can see both of them below.