City of Heroes, the first and in many eyes, the best superhero themed MMORPG is going to shut down on November 30th. Paragon Studios, the company that was/is currently managing City of Heroes released a press statement on the City of Heroes site stating that the game would be shutdown after “a realignment of company focus and publishing support” by parent publisher NCsoft. Not only will City of Heroes be shutting down but also Paragon Studios themselves as well.

City of Heroes was originally released in 2004 as a Pay to Play game. It quickly garnered a cult following since at the time there was no other superhero themed MMORPGs available. With consistent updates including the inclusion of fan made and driven content, City of Heroes retained a dedicated following even after the change in developers.

Addressing the community one last time, Community Manager Andy Belford had this to say:

“Thank you. Thank you for your years of support. You’ve been with us every step of the way, sharing in our challenges, encouraging us to make City of Heroes better, more than everyone else thought it could be. We couldn’t have come this far without you. I implore you all, focus on the good things of CoH and Paragon Studios. Don’t dwell on the “how” or the “why”, but rather join us in celebrating the legacy of an amazing partnership between the players and the development team.

Thank you, and I’ll see you in the skies, one last time.”

It is truly saddening to see that NCsoft felt that it was not worth continuing to provide service for City of Heroes even after it’s switch to the Free to Play model. While there are still a few superhero themed MMORPGs available -Champions Online and DC Universe- in my eyes none will have had as much of an impact on the MMORPG scene as City of Heroes did.

Michael Dunaway has been part of the MMOBomb team for years and has covered practically every major Free-to-Play title since 2009. In addition to contributing First Look videos and news articles, Michael also serves as the Community Manager for the upcoming MMORPG, Skyforge.

21 COMMENTS

  1. In my (not so) humble opinion, this game shut down is a mistake, for a number of reasons. Let me elaborate a bit, please.

    I’ve been a player for the better part of six years now, and I still love (and play) the game. No, it’s not the most complex game, and that’s often a part of its charm. There is something that is quite viscerally satisfying about being able to go and simply bash something. After a day of work, it’s a nice way to unwind, chat with friends and let out a little frustration without doing anything more than hitting a button. No one gets hurt (except possibly a few NPC’s) and I end up having a good time.

    I will miss the many customizable features within the game. From being able to design my own missions in Architect to being able to create toons, no other game gives me the broad array of options to make the game a personal experience that CoH/V does. No other game has such an amazing array of customization features in its character creation, plus it is possible for every character to have his/her own back story. The Architect missions are fun when I want something a bit outside the normal set of missions, or I can simply go to Pocket D’s and hang out with friends. There are many play options within one game.

    Aside from the play, City of Heroes/Villains is much more than simply a game. There is actually a charity organization run by players, called “Real Life Heroes”. It helps those in need of assistance. Players have met and married due to this game. Many of the super-groups routinely help each other and reach out to others who need assistance either in-game or out. I have friends from all over the world. Many of those will be lost if this game closes.

    It’s not that the game was losing money, either. It simply wasn’t making AS MUCH as the company thought it should. It was still profitable, though, so why close it down? It certainly doesn’t do anything good for NC Soft’s reputation to have handled this the way they did, nor would it hurt for them to keep the servers up, even it they didn’t want to be bothered with developing new content.

    OK, I know that not everyone may share my views, but there are thousands who do, thousands who will be saddened to see the lights go out in Paragon City. Please, NC Soft, rethink this decision. We, the loyal super-citizens of Paragon City and the Rogue Isles, would be most grateful.

  2. So sad… been playing this game back when it started.. I was 13 years old by then and I must say I’ve had so much fun, the Task Forces, the events, the PvP everything was awesome. The graphics got outdated though, R.I.P CoH/CoV !

  3. game makers should find a way that when games do shut down that they can offer them as a single player experience with private severs.

  4. It wasn’t the worst Superhero themed MMO. It was just outdated. It pioneered the whole idea and concept of superhero themed MMOs and in it’s time it was the best there was because it was the only one there was. At it’s peak when it was well established and they had released all of the content they could, it was the best. But there is only so much you can add to a game so other games have overtaken it and released better content.

  5. Such a shame to see such damning comments about the classic CoH.

    Neither DCUO or Champions Online kept me interested a tenth of the time that CoH did. DCUO looks pretty, CO had some neat ideas but neither can be compared IMO to CoH in it’s prime in means of content or quality.

  6. OMG CoH shutting down ?

    ah heck who cares? its been one of the worst Free2Play games out there with dated graphics and crap ! Good to see another game falling down !

  7. It is sad to see a title that was playable on MAC go. Instead of saturating the market with asian titles left and right, more devs should create MAC extensions on the games to make dollars. But business model is fast easy cash. So easy to create pets as an expansion then a new client.

  8. i think dcuniverse is much better.
    but i hope the game comes out from a new publisher like pwe.
    pwe is not the best but have a big gaming community with much money 😛

  9. Not really surprised. I knew once GW2 came out NCSoft was going to shut down quite a bit of its western support teams for other games to assist with GW2. L2 and possibly Aion will follow suit, especially since both of those games still have European servers, albeit running under a different company and structure. They MIGHT stick around longer since they’re both made by the Korean offices, as opposed to all their western subscription games that have long since been shut down(Auto Assault, Tabula Rasa, Dungeon Runners).

    • I can’t say anything for L2, but there’s no way Aion is going anywhere. The game is immensely popular and still makes a ton of money. Not to mention NCSoft is still releasing and working on updates and new features to the game. Like now, there’s a faction incentive for Asmodians. They want more players to balance the factions out, so why would they think about shutting the game down after trying to bribe more people into playing?

      • I don’t know about Aion being around even though they are adding new content. Just look at how soon they are closing CoH after they just released new power sets. Nothing to stop and say “yeah, we wont touch Aion”, they can easily do it even before the content is released.

    • It was the oldest out of them so of course some things will be seen as worse. However they really tried to incorporated a lot of the community content into the game. That added so much replay value.

    • far from the worst. one of the very few i enjoyed for a long time.

      it was just outdated is all. and nothing groundbreaking to hold up against the test of time.

      sad news. fun game. quick someone emulate a private server!

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