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  • Writer's pictureLiv

Gaming as a Service Needs to Die

Join Liv from Podcasters United as she shares her candid thoughts on gaming as a service!

2023 was the death of multiplayer games in the sense that once the game goes live, it does not live to see the following year. As a consumer, why are you buying the battle pass or cosmetics for your character just to see the game’s servers shut down less than a year later? Why are development teams abandoning these projects shortly after launch? It begs the question, why even start these projects at all? As a gamer, I am tired of seeing the same copy and paste model for games as a service. Every game wants to be the next Fortnite or League of Legends in terms of success. They can’t and won’t because the development team abandons the project too early. Let’s dive into a handful of games that will no longer see the light of day because players saw the game as a fad.


A popular PC game, Apex Legends, launched a mobile version on May 17, 2022 and shut down in May of 2023. EA stated that the game had a strong launch, but fell off quickly. As mobile gaming has been on the rise, it appears that the development team for Apex Legends was not willing to dedicate a team for its mobile game and completely shifted focus on its more popular platform being PC. If you are not willing to dedicate a team to a game you just released, why release it at all? I find myself asking this question repeatedly as more and more multiplayer games terminate shortly after launching. Live service games need support to constantly push content to actively engage its player base. There is no point in releasing a live service game if the developers do not provide the support it needs to survive. 


Bandai Namco wanted to be the next Overwatch with Gundam Evolution which launched September 20, 2022. In July of 2023, they announced there will be a few updates between August and October of 2023, but the server will no longer be operational in November of 2023. The development team believed it was no longer possible to provide a service that players will find satisfying. Why not try though? Gundam is a very popular franchise with several TV shows and movies, so there is a ton of content to sift through or expand on. It seems that the development team wanted to move onto another project instead of trying to support the one they already had. 


Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodhunt, a free-to-play battle royale shooter, was at the forefront of many video game showcases and left early access on April 27, 2022. The studio stated that the game never reached critical success in order to remain sustainable. This game will no longer be receiving further developments and servers will remain operational until the player base diminishes. Why play a game that the development team has abandoned? We will see how much longer these servers last. Have you tried this game out? Are you still playing?




Another free-to-play battle royale, Rumbleverse, launched August 11, 2022 and ceased operation 6 months later on February 28, 2023. Gamers thought this could be an actual competitor to Fortnite with its large open world map and third person fighting elements. However, Rumbleverse ended very quickly after the match began due to a lack of game modes to keep players engaged.  Therefore, just 6 months after launch, the development team yet again states that there was a lack of substantial players. These live services games try to copy the hype around other marque video games. This is why these live service games are failing. Stop trying to copy each other and make something new. Why try out a different game if it is almost exactly the same as the one you are already playing? What is the incentive to switch? It seems like a simple concept to comprehend.


Guess what? Another free to play battle royale game, MultiVersus, supposedly akin to Super Smash Bros., but with Warner Bros. characters, launched July 19, 2022 and shut down April 2023. However, the developers stated that this was an open beta and the full game will launch early 2024, but how long will that really last? With the cycle of the games I have previously discussed, is MultiVersus really all that different to make a name for itself and stick around or will it suffer the same fate as many other games have? Now that it’s 2024 we will see if this game makes a comeback for the long haul.


Aren’t you tired of seeing games advertised at every video game showcase event just to see them vanish into thin air less than a year later? I sure am! Development teams need to stop wasting their time trying to copy the models of other games hoping for the same big success. Be innovative. Try something new. Stop wasting our time if you are not going to put the effort into the product you are offering. I truly believe that games as a service is hindering the video game industry as more and more games fight for relevancy and butt heads with well established franchises. If you are frustrated too, go back to playing single player games that do not require being connected to the internet at all times and enjoy yourself.

 

BIO: Liv writes for Podcasters United. When she's not gaming, she's watching sports!


Looking for more of Liv’s video game and sports takes? Follow her over on Twitter:


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