Within the next couple of months, Sony Online Entertainment will be doing its spring cleaning early, starting the job by shutting down Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures and Free Realms on March 31st; then finishing it with Vanguard and Wizardry Online on July 31st.

SOE’s explanation for their sudden change of heart mirrors that of an employer laying someone off nicely, stating that, “-we are always evaluating our portfolio to ensure we’re providing players with the best gameplay experiences. At times, as part of this commitment, we have to make the difficult decision to sunset a game so we can refocus our resources on other areas in the best interest of our company and player community.”

You can find questions and feedback on Reddit with CEO John Smedley, who is answering the questions personally.

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.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Wizardry was a pretty unique MMO, you really wont find any others like it and you’d be a moron to try argue otherwise. The closest i’d say is DDO and it still didn’t feel anywhere near as arcadey as DDO does.

    Sad to see it go, it still has a decent population. Really a senseless killing.

  2. I’m not surprised, also i have been telling them to bring back The Agency: Covert Ops. But they don’t seem to listen. I Gave up trying to deal with them , also bullet run sucks lol

  3. not surprised to see wizardry shut down….Im surprised it took this long to shut it down.
    RIP Wizardry. A great unique game no one loved

    • If you meant the mediocre, outdated gameplay, eyerolling cutscenes and pan-dropping jokes to be unique then be my guest. It was a pointless attempt to draw a crowd in the beginning. Just a wasteful diversion of dividing manpower, incompetent workers and bad decisions to publish Wizardry online.

      This happens when the company has too much money to spare and creating side projects which was meant to fail quicker than instant access devs deciding to release their game to the public as a ‘complete’ game.

      “A great unique game” Do you know what MMO which has “unique” Permadeath feature but yet successful? Realms of the Mad God. Yes, Wizardry got its ass handed by a 2D game

      • Granted Wiz had a lot of terrible stuff about it. But you have to admit the dungeons were pretty unique with all the traps and puzzles, the PvP was different, ( the first and probably last time I was sent to a virtual jail ) and an interesting multi-class system.

        The way the game encouraged players to team up for dungeons or just to fight off an annoying pker and the way players interacted in town buying, selling, hunting criminals in the slums or finding people to help in a dungeon made the game feel a lot more alive.

        • Salem exactly has permadeath and player killing and criminal branding. it never got off live. It’s because these games aren’t made well and these role-playing aspects aren’t implemented well to make people want to play it. in exception to Wizardry online, it’s foundation is considered sub-par.

  4. I had a look at the Wizardry website as i haven’t touched the game since beta, just curious to see how far it got.

    I noticed in the news section there was a SoE employee promising new content on the 17th which was a week before they announced their shutting it down lol. Typical carrot on a stick routine I guess.

  5. Good that SOE have decided to purge some of their games in early 2014; this is because both Free Realms and Clone Wars Adventures are a one-way street, in the way that you register, play the game and then, after a while, the game requires quite expensive membership.
    Therefore, even though the cover says free-to-play, it may not be so, and you may end up paying quite a lot of money further along down the line.

  6. Looks like that list of all the future lcasses in Wizardry is never happening, LOL. maybe if they didn’t make people who pay cash actually stronger than people who don’t it wouldn’t have failed. Shame though, i was hoping some day they’d patch it up.

    • There is a difference in being a designer and a publisher.

      They were Wizardry’s publisher, meaning they just take its foreign counterpart and convert it and hope for profits, rarely do publishers make big changes that do not happen to the foreign version.

      • I’m well aware of how it works. The japanese version of the game had new classes and significantly less bugs. I was just noting that maybe if the NA devs actually knew how to work on a timely basis people would actually play and Sony wouldn’t have shut them down.

    • Yes, more or likely they’re trying to put more players to Everquest the new one, so I am guessing they are shutting this games down for the sake of the new game. If you think about it is a big risk for their company. so its 50, 50 chance that more players will be interested in the new Everquest.

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