Final Fantasy XIV had a rough go with server congestion and login issues from frequent disconnections and errors around the time Endwalker launched last year. Things eventually worked themselves out and the game remained stable with only short login queue since then. However, those memories came flooding back on August 2 around 5:00 p.m. PT when North American servers experienced a temporary mass shutdown due to a FFXIV DDoS attack.
In a post on the official FFXIV site The Lodestone, Square Enix has acknowledged the problem and confirmed that it was caused by DDoS attacks, and stated the following.
Players may be experiencing the following issues:
- Disconnected from North American data center Worlds
- Difficulty logging in to North American data center Worlds
- Difficulty accessing, sending, and receiving data from North American data centers
Amid the technical difficulties, the blog post also said, “We will continue to monitor the situation and work with ISPs to come up with countermeasures.” If you’re playing on NA data centers (Primal, Crystal, or Aether) and are experiencing inexplicable disconnections, this may be the problem.
DDoS stands for distributed denial-of-service, which targets servers and floods their bandwidth or resources, causing them to shutdown. DDoS attacks are done with malicious intent and it’s difficult to trace since it comes from multiple sources with different IP addresses to cause the shutdown.
North American servers seem to be an easier target for a FFXIV DDoS attack since it has yet to get its planned server expansion. Just last month with Patch 6.18, Japan got a new data center to rearranged its servers to create more room for players, and Europe received four new servers on its existing data centers as well. Additional North American servers were delayed into November, which were initially planned for this summer. Server expansion could help mitigate issues like this, but that solution will have to wait.
The FFXIV DDoS attack is especially disappointing for players who may have been in the middle of playing through content. Those who may have been progressing in a highly difficult raid or at a crucial point in the story would have been met with a sudden server crash. To be clear, the game is still online, but if you’re playing, just be weary of it happening again until Square Enix resolves the matter. With Patch 6.2 right around the corner, tons of players will be flocking back to FFXIV. Hopefully the matter is resolved before then.