Has anything like this happened in gaming before? The whole situation seems unprecedented.
Perhaps not quite to this scale, but Halo MCC had largely unplayable multiplayer for a good 5 months. If you found a game, it took half an hour.
Took 5 months for a complete fix. They gave away Halo ODST for free the following year and honoured some refunds for about 2 weeks after the game launched.