Man…I have to be honest, the SOE apocalypse is gut wrenching to watch. I’ve read through the Vanguard closing thread on the forums, and that was some of the most painful shit I’ve ever read. Yes, there are one or two people being assholes, but even with them, they can’t quite get it right because it hurts too much.

The Reddit AMA that happened today is even worse. Think its bad when adults lose their virtual homes? Try reading from the 14 year old girl who has just heard the news. Smed says he will get it worse than everyone though:

Two questions from my 9yo daughter about Free Realms closing down: “Do you think if we played Free Realms more they won’t shut it down?” and “Why?”

[–]j_smedley[S] 30 points 3 hours ago

First off – I have to go home after this and tell my 12 year old daughter Rose that her favorite game is going away. I assure everyone out there that I will catch more grief from her than anyone else. She easily plays the game 20 hours a week (ok stop judging me other gaming parents.. it’s a friendly game for kids). It makes me really sad to shut down FR, but the truth is we need our resources elsewhere right now.

And with that one answer, Smed set virtual fire to the other games. The speculation was already pointed in the direction of EQN, and that all but confirmed it. Now the mob is not only mad that their home is getting shuttered, but any hopes Sony might have had about reeling them in elsewhere just got axed. EQN is going to have a long and bumpy road to success, if it gets there at all.

Perhaps the most amazing thing that came out of all of this was the almost-white-knight-charge of Brad McQuaid, who immediately dropped everything and offered to buy back the IP and the game. The answer:


Damn that was ballsy of him though. I hadn’t planned on giving to the Pantheon kickstarter, but I think I’m going to have to do so now, just as a gesture of thanks for making the effort.

Of course, all of this is just a bit two faced, and I admit that. Its been a good six months since I’ve logged into Vanguard, and it never really grabbed me the way I thought it would last year. The progression was just too damn slow. So on the one hand, I am a contributor to the shut down. I should have put more money and time into the game than I did. And why should I be upset that Vanguard is going under when I was such a lukewarm follower of it? Fair points I guess, but still…

It hurts. And unlike Warhammer and some of the other shutdown titles, where a day or two of nostalgia has been enough, I’m going to have to fire up Fraps and make this exit count.

Because I do love Telon and the vision and the game. I love that this is the last great achievement of Keith Parkinson before his passing. I love that this game had the balls to do things that no other game after it has even dared to attempt. And also, like all of us at some point in life (I suspect), we can fall just as in love with someone or something based on what we hoped it might be as we would based on something that was already what we wanted it to be.


9 thoughts on “Gutted.

  1. Pingback: Bloodbath at SOE – Four Titles Closing Down, PlanetSide Goes F2P | The Ancient Gaming Noob

    1. My understanding is that he was talking about Landmark. He has said several times now that the crafting/economy of it is a nod to SWG. So that didn’t do much for me; Landmark just isn’t all that exciting in my book.

      1. See that is where you are still trusting. (-: Even if I did believe him, if it’s not announced yet it has to be at least 2 and more likely 3 years away. So I can’t get too excited about it.

  2. Thing about SWG was — if we totally take off the rose-tinted nostalgia glasses — the people. Just like with EQ1, there’s no way in hell players today would just sit and socialize during downtimes. Entertainers? They’d get bitched at all day for not leveling their buffs high enough and fast enough because we have to GOGOGOGOGO!!!1!

    I don’t feel ANY of the original old-school MMOs were great *games* at all. But they were great social experiences with (mostly) like-minded players. Those players don’t exist today. At least not enough of them.

    I was certain Smed was talking about The Repopulation since they just exceeded their Kickstarter funding, which is usually when publishers feel they can swoop in. But a red-name in the forum says that’s not the case, so allegedly SOE has their own IP sandbox in development. I just hope it’s not the zombie game. FFS I’m sick of zombies already…

  3. Pingback: So McQuaid it hurts | Hardcore Casual

  4. Pingback: Quotes of the Game: Vanguard reactions | Bio Break

  5. When I first heard the news, I was sad, too. I think your last sentence describes my feelings very well:

    “And also, like all of us at some point in life (I suspect), we can fall just as in love with someone or something based on what we hoped it might be as we would based on something that was already what we wanted it to be.”

    A slightly over-dramatic (by my standards) post will follow at the usual play.

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