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Marvel Heroes has shut down over a month earlier than planned.
Developer Gazillion Entertainment - now officially closed down - had said the free-to-play Diablo-esque action role-playing online game would go dark on 31st December, but a note published yesterday from the official Marvel Heroes Twitter account announced the closure with immediate effect.
Last week, MassivelyOP said it had seen a termination letter written by Gazillion CEO Dave Dohrmann, which claimed "banking creditors have effectively pulled the plug on the company, leading to the termination of almost every employee at the studio and the apparent renege of benefits including accrued PTO [paid time off]".
Gazillion Entertainment, the makers of Marvel Heroes, have shut down. This means the free-to-play superhero action-RPG has also shut down, one month earlier than it was supposed to. Disney, who own Marvel, had announced earlier this month that they were breaking up their partnership with Gazillion and so the game would shut down on December 31st. But losing their big gig meant that Gazillion needed to shut down, and with no one left to run the game it’s gone now too. This has gone badly for everyone. (more…)
Despite relaunches, countless updates, a massive roster of superheroes and villains, and its recent move to consoles, Marvel Heroes is being shut down. Disney and developers Gazillion had announced last week that they were dissolving their partnership, and that servers would go quiet on December 31. Today, only a couple of days before Thanksgiving, staff were “let go”, and Marvel Heroes may now cease to exist tomorrow.
More troubling news from the developers of soon to be no more Marvel Heroes: staff at studio Gazillion report they were all let go yesterday - the day before Thanksgiving.
Not only that, the developers report Marvel Heroes, a Marvel-themed free-to-play Diablo-style game for PC and consoles, will shut down tomorrow, Friday 24th November. The note on the Marvel Heroes website says the game will go dark on 31st December 2017.
MassivelyOP said it had seen a termination letter written by Gazillion CEO Dave Dohrmann, which claims "banking creditors have effectively pulled the plug on the company, leading to the termination of almost every employee at the studio and the apparent renege of benefits including accrued PTO [paid time off]".
Superhero Diablo-like Marvel Heroes never really had much of a chance. A terribly rushed launch to try and capture as much superhero hype as possible backfired, leaving what could have been a successful game with a mammoth struggle just to find its footing and catch up.
This summer’s relaunch as Marvel Heroes Omega (coinciding with the launch of the console version) was the last nail in the coffin, not only did it fail to draw new players to the free-to-play action-RPG, but active player-counts tumbled sharply on PC. This week, Disney pulled the plug, announcing the dissolution of their partnership with developers Gazillion, and signalling that the servers will shut down on December 31st.
Disney has announced that free-to-play Marvel Heroes is shutting down.
Developed by Gazillion Entertainment, the Diablo-esque action-RPG first launched on PC back in 2013, and arrived on PS4 and Xbox One earlier this year under the somewhat streamlined guise of Marvel Heroes Omega.
Marvel Heroes' community and social media channels have been conspicuously silent since mid-October, a fact that hadn't gone unnoticed by concerned players.
Update 2: Despite suggestions Marvel Heroes would run until the end of the year, the free-to-play MMO has now been officially shuttered. Developer Gazillion Entertainment has also closed its doors.
Last week, as reported below, it appeared this news might come sooner than expected—however the game's Twitter account has now confirmed its fate with the following statement:
To this end, the Marvel Heroes website, Steam page and forums have also been closed down.
Massively OP has been told that developer Gazillion will be shuttered entirely, and that instead of running until the end of the year, Marvel Heroes will be ended on November 24—tomorrow. The studio hasn't confirmed the unexpectedly early closure, but multiple Gazillion employees including engineer Andrew Hair and designers Brian Waggoner and Anthony Gallegos have tweeted about their termination. Worse, all three say that staff are being let go without any severance or paid time-off payouts.
Marvel Heroes remains available to play on Steam, but the DLC is now gone.
The free-to-play Diablo-like MMO Marvel Heroes got its "biggest update ever" in January, with an overhaul of all 59 heroes, a new difficulty slider and endgame progression system, and various other tweaks. Following that, in June of this year, a console version was released under the title Marvel Heroes Omega. Sadly for players, it didn't add up to much in the long run, as Marvel has confirmed in an email to Kotaku that the game is being shuttered.
"We regret to inform our Marvel Heroes fans that we have ended our relationship with Gazillion Entertainment, and that the Marvel Heroes games will be shut down," a rep said. "We would like to sincerely thank the players who joined the Marvel Heroes community, and will provide any further updates as they become available."
Marvel Heroes has chugged along since its launch in 2013, but apparently not without issues. Multiple sources told Kotaku that there were at least three rounds of layoffs within the first year of release, while a current employee said that he'd been working on updates for the game over the past few months but was "not very confident" that they would ever get released. Gazillion itself has been showing signs of trouble as well, missing several weekly updates, a Halloween event, and the release of Thor: Ragnarok tie-in content.
A date for the actual shutdown hasn't been given. For now, Marvel Heroes remains available to play (and its DLC to buy) on Steam. I've reached out to Gazillion for more information.