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Tornado knocks out World of Warcraft

Blizzard's MMORPG beta shut down.

The ongoing US beta of World of Warcraft has been knocked offline after the Virginia-based datacentre housing all the servers was hit by a tornado on Friday night and the servers were shutdown to avoid damage. Fortunately none of the servers wound up wrapped round a tree, but the roof of the datacentre wasn't so lucky judging by the photographs on the WoW community site at the moment.

According to an update on the WoW site last night, the beta will remain offline "into Monday, and possibly longer," and Blizzard says its on-site team of network engineers is working "around the clock" to try and get the matter in hand, although "the hardware is not yet dry enough to be powered up". "The good news is that there's a possibility that we will be able to begin carefully powering up and testing the hardware last this [Sunday] evening," a posting on the WoW community site reads.

Fortunately the European beta servers are housed in a separate facility in France, although there's no telling whether this will hold up the forthcoming closed beta in this region for other reasons. We should hear something on the subject soon. You can read more about World of Warcraft in our recent preview and interview.

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Tom Bramwell

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Tom worked at Eurogamer from early 2000 to late 2014, including seven years as Editor-in-Chief.

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