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Games developer Epic Games has reset user passwords following the discovery of a hack attack against its websites.

Criminal miscreants made off with email addresses and encrypted passwords of forum users after breaking into Epic's forum site. Epic's main web site was also hit, according to an email sent by the firm over the weekend and forwarded by readers to El Reg.

The Unreal Developer Network (UDN) was not affected by the breach, according to a statement on the hack by Tim Sweeney, founder of Epic Games Inc.

Numerous Twitter users report received the warning emails, which has acted as the basis of several news stories on specialist games forums. We've asked Epic for more information on the attack and will update this story as and when we hear more.

Epic has restored its web sites and forums following the hack. Although only encrypted passwords were exposed via the hack it might still be possible for hackers to figure out the plan text equivalent of these passwords using a brute force attack.

The real danger is that some of these users might have used the same login ID/weak password combination on more sensitive sites. If that's the case then changing passwords all around is already long overdue.

US-based Epic, which is best known for its Gears of War series, is the latest victim in a recent spate of hacking attacks affecting computer gaming firms. Codemasters, Nintendo and Sony have all experienced hack attacks of varying seriousness over recent weeks.

It's seems likely that these hacks were motivated for varied reasons and most probable that they carried out by different groups.

Sony gaming sites were attacked because of its harassment of PS3 modders, such as George Holtz, while Nintendo was politely warned of security problems by LolzSec. A wide variety of personal information was obtained via the Codemasters hack, certainly compared to the latest hack on Epic Games. Codemaster responded to the hack on its systems by closing its website. ®

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