First, don't panic. Second, go back up your Borderlands 2 save data. DO IT NOW! This is no time to stay calm! See that picture up there? That's your Xbox 360 save data getting splattered all over the wall by the viral graveyard.sav glitch. Apparently, this nasty son of a bitch can be passed from player to player and it WILL kill your character's save data. Permanently. As in, FOREVER. Who or what caused this terminal gaming STD is still unclear, but one things certain, it exists, and it's wiping character saves.
Players can get this viral glitch from any random player. Your buddy who plays with randoms could be carrying it. Back up your save data. Now. Here is the latest statement from Gearbox community manager ChrisF regarding the issue:
Recently a few users have begun violating the Xbox Live Code of Conduct by using an external application to maliciously disrupt the experience and sabotage characters of legitimate Borderlands 2 players on Xbox 360. Fortunately it’s easy to avoid this scenario.
While we work to resolve this as quickly as possible with our partners, concerned Xbox 360 players of Borderlands 2 should consider playing online with trusted individuals in non-public sessions. This does not affect players on PC or PlayStation 3.
We also advise that before ceasing play, users always select "Save and Quit" from within the pause menu while their character is alive. If after the death of their character players find themselves at the main menu of Borderlands 2 instead of respawning in-game, be sure to immediately select "Continue" to resume playing as that character.
We ask that players report any suspicious behavior in Borderlands 2 to firstname.lastname@example.org and provide as much details and documentation of their disrupted experience as possible to assist us in our investigation.
Well that sucks.
For more information on exactly what the hell is going on I'll once again direct you to the Gearbox forums.
What is graveyard.sav? What does this have to do with me?
When you get hit by the glitch that turns your save into graveyard.sav, upon entering FFYL and then subsequently dying for whatever reason, you will never respawn. You die and go into a free roam camera. If you try to load another character, dashboard, restart your xbox, etc, your save data is completely gone and there is no hope of recovering it at that point, as it is renamed graveyard.sav and is missing the majority of the data it once had.
What?! How did I get this?
As stated above, the glitch originated with the modding community and may or may not have been accidental. It spread from there, and it passes from the infected player to all other players in the game with said infected player. At this point, it's a terrible chain, and chances are it passed to you through some randoms.
But I don't play with randoms! I play with my friends only
Do your friends play with randoms? Have any of you ever had somebody come into a game and trade you anything? It's easy to spread, unfortunately.
How can I get my character back?
Once your save file has turned into graveyard.sav, you cannot get your character back. Too much data has been lost at that point, and it is far beyond salvageable.
So how can I prevent this, or save my character if it gets effected later?
If you want to prevent this, you have to make sure you're not playing with randoms, and that everybody you play with isn't playing with randoms, AND that it isn't currently effecting anybody in your group. Along with that, MAKE FREQUENT BACKUPS, and if you are on 360, do not backup to the Cloud, as it will sync with your HD saves and your backups will be overwritten, apparently. Memory card or USB drive is best.
If you get hit by this and recognize it (free roam camera, no respawning, etc), you can salvage your save.
1.] Quit (it'll tell you you cant save, thats fine, hit quit without saving)
2.] At main menu, hit Continue
3.] Load up, hit start, hit Save and Quit
If you salvage your save in this way, and then continue to play, the next time you die, it will happen again, and you must repeat the steps above. I highly recommend following the above steps and then NOT TOUCHING THE SAVE after that. It's a logical assumption that due to how this is done, Gearbox will likely be able to remove the "infection" from any effected files with the patch once they get it out.
This is from community member KuteKuddleyKiwi. I haven't confirmed it, because I'm not about to stick my character into a contaminated player base just to see what happens. I'll be playing local co-op until this game is patched.