Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with the Axios AM and PM newsletters. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to the Axios Closer newsletter for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios Pro Rata

Dive into the world of dealmakers across VC, PE and M&A with Axios Pro Rata. Delivered daily to your inbox by Dan Primack and Kia Kokalitcheva.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with the Axios Sports newsletter. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Des Moines newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Tampa Bay newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Austin news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Austin newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Atlanta news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Atlanta newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Philadelphia news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Philadelphia newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Chicago news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Chicago newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top DC news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios DC newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo by Chesnot/Getty Images

A disruptive hack of online battle royale game "Apex Legends" is shining a light on the personal sacrifices developers make to keep games up and running.

Why it matters: Game developers already work arduous hours, and some developers are still expected to come in for emergencies.

  • The attack took place during the holiday weekend, when hackers inserted messages into some of Apex Legend’s playlists and notifications.
  • Respawn Entertainment director of comms Ryan Rigney tweeted an article about the hack called "Congrats Titanfall Hackers, You Made A Bunch Of Devs Work On A Sunday."
  • "Nobody wants to hear devs complain when DDoS attacks are still a problem we haven't solved," Rigney tweeted, calling the article correct.
  • "I was holding my newborn nephew when I found out about the Apex hack. Had to hand him back, go work, and miss out on a day with family."

The big picture: The hackers’ goal wasn’t to steal information or crash the game, but to draw attention to Titanfall, which has been the subject of repeated DDoS attacks, by promoting sites like Save Titanfall.

  • "Titanfall is a beloved franchise by many, and hacker issues have been at rise," the site reads. "The Titanfall community has been begging Respawn to fix this issue for over three years, but to no avail. Today this game is still being sold, while being completely unplayable. It's time we speak up."
  • As reported by Dexerto, one message in Apex Legends read "TF1 is being attacked so is Apex."

But as Rigney noted, "Sunday's attack was tied to an awareness campaign that we've already publicly acknowledged" and the hackers "achieved nothing of value."

  • The problem's not awareness," he tweeted. "It's that DDoSing in particular is just a hard problem to solve. Really hard. The team has never stopped working on DDoS solutions, and anti-cheat is just a never-ending war of whack-a-mole.
  • "On the DDoS front, we WILL solve this. When we do, I promise you it won't be because hackers ‘made us aware’ by ruining a holiday."
  • Respawn and Rigney declined to comment further.

What they’re saying: Other developers spoke up in support of Respawn and its team.

"If there's one thing the Apex/Titanfall hack proved, it's that ever-increasing expectations for new content, long-term support, and release cadence vs. the development realities and human/monetary cost of live ops games have become impossible to reconcile," tweeted a senior communications director at Naughty Dog.

"Holding products hostage until the developers do exactly what you tell them to do is most certainly NOT going to get people saying "ah, yes, behold this most worthy cause, upon which I shall dedicate all my talent, time, and effort to support!” a staff incubation designer at Bungie tweeted.

"You cannot claim to be in favor of a healthier gaming industry (aka anti-crunch) but then support a hacker who intentionally targeted a holiday weekend - knowing it meant taking people away from their families - and forced people to work," tweeted 343 Industries’s Halo community manager.

Go deeper

EA pushes for more accessible games for players with disabilities

A player uses the Ping System in "Apex Legends" to let the team know of the placement of a Jump Pad. Image: Courtesy of Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts will give other developers access to its accessibility patents and technology as part of a new initiative to make video games more inclusive for players with disabilities.

Why it matters: Attitudes toward accessibility in video games have shifted in a more positive direction over the last decade, but that work needs to be ongoing.

Surprising pandemic side effect: Soaring trade deficits

Source: Census Bureau and Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

Inflation and jobs may get all the economic headlines, but meanwhile a big shift is taking place in the underpinnings of the world economy: The U.S. trade deficit is soaring.

What's happening: Americans' spending on imported physical goods has gone through the roof, while exports are growing slowly, making the U.S. the world's consumer of last resort.

Mike Allen, author of AM
41 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Third Way: "Big Lie" could become "Big Coup"

Graphic: Third Way

Third Way, the center-left think tank, is urging fellow Democrats to respond to the Capitol riot with "the size, scope, and seriousness of a presidential campaign," co-founder Matt Bennett tells me.

Driving the news: "For the first time in U.S. history, a party must mount two parallel presidential campaigns: one to win the election, and the other to prevent its theft," Bennett said, calling this "a Paul Revere moment."