It’s unfortunate thatAnother One Bites The Dust exists, but necessary. This column chronicles the fateful announcements ahead of an MMOGs’ downfall, a company closure or, in some truly sad cases, both. Grab your Big Gulp and let some hit the floor for the fallen.
Way, way back in late 2011 we did an interview of a little covered game, Transformers Universe. Licensing the popular Transformer intellectual property developer Jagex was hoping to lay another hit on the online gaming universe akin to its flagship Runescape F2P MMORPG. Over a year after the early tease, of which the global PR manager Laura West expertly dodged most questions pertaining to gameplay, the game saw a radical switch from an MMORPG to the new hotness of the multiplayer online battle arena slant.
The same week the development 180 was announced the game went into closed beta testing. That was in late 2012. Jagex and Hasbro jointly announced that closed beta was as far as the title would go. Just over two years from the switch the companies jointly announced that Transformers Universe has been canceled, account creation has been closed, refunds will be issues and servers will be culled on January 31.
Jagex didn’t much of an explanation for the closure; both companies realigning “their plans and focuses for 2015” being the closest. I’d put my money on slow adoption/little interest due to the highly competitive MOBA market and a title with few discerning features or innovative ideas.