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Severe DDoS attacks force T1's LCK match to be rescheduled

Severe DDoS attacks force T1's LCK match to be rescheduled
Image via Riot Games

Written by 

Sascha Heinisch

Published 

28th Feb 2024 17:00

The South Korean League of Legends competition LCK was forced to end its broadcast due to a DDoS attack, interrupting the match between T1 and FearX prematurely at a 1-0 scoreline, rescheduling the rest of the series.

The event is preceded by months of similar attacks on LCK players, interrupting both practice and streaming sessions.

Rescheduling the match

In week 6 of the LCK Spring Season, the match between T1 and FearX was set to be a high-stakes match, with both teams sitting on the edge of their respective qualification thresholds. T1 was fighting for direct seeding into the second round of the playoffs, and FearX was looking to clinch participation.

Over the last couple of weeks, the team around Lee "Faker" Sang-hyeok had gone on a streak of nine consecutive wins with the mid-laner making a serious case for the season MVP during this period.

With fans gathered at LOL Park to see both the prior match between Gen.G and Kwangdong Freecs as well as T1, delays kept piling onto the match due to connection issues brought about severe DDoS attacks.

Eventually, officials decided to play the game out under suboptimal conditions and reschedule the rest of the series to an unannounced date, with T1 taking a 1-0 lead.

"We understand that the audience patiently waited until late hours to watch the match, only to experience confusion with the sudden decision to postpone the match," an official statement on Twitter by the LCK read.

Not the first instance

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Already on February 25, the LCK ran into issues due to a DDoS attack hitting the tournament server and causing production issues. Unable to find a solution to the problem in time, the LCK acknowledged their responsibility, stating: 

“During the two league rest days following the DDoS attacks, the LCK conducted network inspections and prepared various response measures. We are diligently researching and implementing the best possible measures to ensure that LCK fans can enjoy a pleasant environment for viewing.

"Although our prepared response protocols may successfully deter DDoS attempts, it is anticipated that perpetrators of these attacks may try other approaches."

As a response to potential future issues, the LCK formulated protocols to communicate in a more timely manner with fans, offer refunds to fans, and negotiate with teams whether it is possible to finish the match.

According to Content creator and esports journalist Ashley Kang, South Korean League of Legends servers have been plagued by similar issues for months, even impacting individual players such as Chovy and Faker in their solo queue matches.

"DDOS has been a known issue for many weeks, with the userbase expressing growing frustration. There are questions being raised if LCK implemented appropriate preventive measures for such a known issue," she wrote on social media platform X.

Further LCK matches are scheduled for tomorrow between OKSavingsBank Brion and Dplus Kia, as well as NongShim REDFORCE and DRX. 

Sascha "Yiska" Heinisch is a Senior Esports Journalist at GGRecon. He's been creating content in esports for over 10 years, starting with Warcraft 3.

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