Mythic has confirmed plans to close down its Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning massively multiplayer on-line role-playing game (MMORPG) at the end of the year.
Launched in 2008, the MMORPG takes the Warhammer fantasy role-playing setting from Games Workshop and couples it with the realm-versus-realm (RvR) combat system developed by Mythic for its earlier Dark Age of Camelot title. The game's main focus is on a campaign, for which players fight under the armies of Order or Destruction. Cyclic, the campaign is theoretically never-ending - although, sadly, consumer interest rapidly waned: a peak of 800,000 registered users in its launch year dropped to 300,000 just one year later - and has been dropping ever since.
Now, Mythic is shutting the game down for good, following a programme of reducing server numbers. The reason, the company claims, is that the licensing deal for the Warhammer brand with Games Workshop is coming to an end - although the flagging subscribers numbers will have likely helped the company reach its decision too.
'We here at Mythic have built an amazing relationship working with Games Workshop creating and running Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning over the last eight years,
' a company spokesperson explained in a blog post
late last night. 'Unfortunately, as with all licensing deals they do eventually come to end and on December 18th, 2013 we will no longer be operating Warhammer Online. From all of us here at Mythic we thank you again for your dedication and support over the last five years.
'Some of the most talented people in gaming made Warhammer possible. They worked insanely long hours, and they put their heart and soul into trying to make this beautiful IP a living and breathing universe,
' added Carrie Gouskos, the game's producer, in a follow-up post
. 'World class artists. Genius engineers. Designers and content implementers who would put in 100 hours a week and not complain. Hard-ass producers who you would follow into battle anywhere. Writers that truly transported you. QA that wouldn’t let us get away with a thing. And so many others. For those that are still with Mythic and those that have since moved on, we couldn’t have asked for a more driven team dedicated to bringing this amazing franchise to life.
'And finally, the players. If I were to list out all of the great experiences I’ve had with you, this would be a novel, so I want to say thank you from all of us to all of you for sticking with us so long. Even when you didn’t like the changes, even if you thought we made mistakes.
Mythic has taken the decision to begin the shutdown process now, ceasing sale of three-month time codes and disabling the three-month auto-renew process ahead of the official shut-down date of the 18th of December.