If you've been trying to play your favorite Daybreak Games title and haven't been able to, there is an interesting reason why. Daybreak President and CEO John Smedley (whom I did an interview with after the company became independent of Sony) has been the focus of aggressive attacks by a member of Lizard Squad.

Julius "Zeekill" Kivimaki has been actively attacking SOE and Daybreak apparently with some vendetta against John Smedley. The Finnish hacker was just recently convicted of more than 50,000 internet crimes with more than a dozen other charges that still haven't been heard yet in court - including a bomb threat call that ended up diverting one of Smedley's airline flights not too long ago.

While I'm vaguely familiar with DDOS attacks and have had the miserable experience of witnessing and conversing with hackers occasionally in games - I'm not sure I've ever seen such open contempt and vitriol taking place. It's quite shocking to see some of the exchanges that have taken place over the past several weeks between Smedley and Zeekill.

Zeekill clearly has it out for Smedley and appears to be holding no punches with his actions, moves that Lizard Squad itself appears to be backing as the organization's twitter account threats seemed to be perfectly synced with Daybreak Games downtime. Unfortunately, Smedley isn't making things easy on the company. He has been reveling in this week's convictions of his assailant and "poking the beast" with strong statements laced with profanity.

I don't expect this war to be over quickly, which is a unfortunate - considering that the fans of Daybreak Games are the ones who are actually paying the price. Hopefully players can remain understanding of the situation and not bail out of All-Access subscriptions during this fiasco. DGC is already barely treading water after the transition from their position under Sony, any heavy loss of income is only going to further set back Landmark, H1Z1, and EverQuest Next which appear to be the studio's long-term future in the industry.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that Lizard Squad runs out of energy, resources, and interest in the continued attacks; but also, that Smedley can stop making matters worse by continually adding fuel to the fire in this conflict. Even when you're on the right side of the law - there is a reason that legal and PR reps advise victims to keep quiet until the dust settles.

Typically if they don't, that dust may never settle.

When you're talking about an assailant that will still be relatively at-large and still have access to friends and conspirators that appear more than happy to carry his flag if and when Zeekill is finally ever restrained. Right now, it's not looking too good for Smedley (and by affiliation - Daybreak Games).

The only difference between mildly annoying DDOS attacks and a serious server population crisis is player patience.


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Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Wall2
Alex has been playing online games and RPGs for quite some time, starting all the way back with Daggerfall, EverQuest, and Ultima Online. He's staying current with the latest games, picking up various titles and playing during his weekly streams on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday evenings with both MMOs and MOBAs being feature plays. Hit him up on Twitter if you have a stream request for Freeplay Friday! Two future games he's got a keen eye on are Daybreak's EverQuest Next and Illfonic's Revival.

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