Secret World Legends tried its best to be ready for launch day, but got off to a rocky start as a drastically-expanded maintenance window frustrated new players. As the maintenance stretched on into the evening, developer Funcom explained that in spite of a considerable closed beta period, shortly after launch, a group of players found an exploit to create free aurum, the game’s premium currency. And not just a little, millions of real dollars’ worth.
Funcom took the Secret World Legends servers down for maintenance and declared an all-hands emergency. Calling their developers in on the weekend (the exploit was found on a Sunday,) the developers worked around the clock to fix the issue. Ultimately, they weren’t able to isolate and remove the bug, but they did permanently ban every player involved in using the exploit, and shut down the Secret World Legends auction house and currency exchange until the duplication bug could be dealt with. Most players were sympathetic to their situation, and acknowledged that the servers were down for a good reason. As Kotaku notes, in order to keep the game genuinely free, players can exchange currency earned in-game with other players for premium currency, and that is where the exploit was found.
Overall, the downtime on Sunday lasted most of the day, and since then the game has experienced frequent downtime, albeit in much smaller increments, to add additional patches, mostly concerned with restoring auction house and currency exchange functionality to Secret World Legends. And because of that, Funcom has decided unprompted to compensate players for their patience.
There are some caveats; the bonuses are only available to players who had an account registered before the June 29 downtime, and can only be claimed on one character. That being said, everyone is getting 25 AP and SP, 10,000 (one day’s worth) Marks of Favour, 4,000 Anima Shards, and a blue talisman fusion catalyst, an aurum-only item.
Overall, it’s a pretty nice package from a developer who didn’t really have to give anything, and hopefully it will accomplish Funcom’s objective: to keep people playing and make the Secret World reboot a success. As they themselves have said, the relaunch is a gamble, but they believe that the game still has a lot to offer and they hope to keep working on it for years to come.
[Featured Image by Funcom]