Viewing Platform : News

News on upcoming delistings, server shutdowns, and studio closures. Anything that might signify an upcoming delisting will be posted here and may serve as a tentative page for a game until it is officially taken offline. This “platform” also covers any site news or happenings within the Delisted community.

Outside of a very few comments and submissions from readers I really didn’t notice anyone coming to Delisted Games after I launched it back in June. I was okay with this because I still feel the site is in its infancy but as it turns out there were more than 10,500 views and 4,588 visitors in 2016! You all have my sincere thanks for stopping by. I hope the site was helpful in confirming a delisting or filling you in on the details. It’s no fun to find out a game was delisted but I hope the site could provide a satisfactory explanation or maybe just some closure.

There are currently 200 games on the site but there’s still much, much (much) more to do. Only about 100 of the pages have sufficient details and several of those could probably use more intensive research. My focus has largely been on console games as well but I would love to expand it to include PC, web and mobile. But it’s a start and one that I’m still very proud of for its first year.

So how about some stats? The Number One most sought after game according to page views was Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game. At 1,107 views it had more than double the hits of any other title. The PlayStation 3 version of Tetris was next in line followed by Flipnote Studio 3D and the Bookworm titles.

Thank you again to everyone who found the site and here’s to a year with fewer delistings! Well, we can hope anyways.

Asheron's Call 1 and 2 shutting down January 31st, 2017

Turbine Inc. announced on December 19th that the team behind Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online would continue development of both titles as the new independent studio Standing Stone Games. While both of those titles are promised to remain unchanged for players, Turbine’s transition has resulted in the end-of-life for their original, long running MMOs Asheron’s Call and Asheron’s Call 2.

A post to Turbine’s Facebook page on December 20th confirms that service for both games will be closed on January 31st, 2017. Current account holders may continue to play for free until the 31st but new account creation has been disabled.

No further explanation was given, the post only states that maintaining both titles over recent years was “a labor of love”. With Asheron’s Call in maintenance mode since 2014 and no new content added to Asheron’s Call 2 since 2005 it is likely that Turbine could not (and WB would not) incur the ongoing expense to keep the games online.

Earlier in 2016 Turbine had mentioned possibly turning over the servers to the community but in a post to the Asheron’s Call forums, administrator Halistran settled the discussion. “We had hoped to be able to hand off our servers to the community, so our most loyal players could continue their journey through Dereth. Unfortunately, this is something we were unable to do.”

The date has been added to the Watch List calendar and both games (Asheron’s Call and Asheron’s Call 2) have their own pages on the site with a few more details.

playstationhome

Thanks to Jonathan for reminding me I didn’t even have a placeholder on the site for PlayStation Home! I always loved the idea of Home but I never managed to keep up with it as it evolved. As such, it took some time to dig up the details around its long and meandering lifespan but there’s finally a decent page on the site.

For now it simply includes a listing of the numerous games that existed within PlayStation Home. I would love to eventually see full pages for everything from bowling to Intellivision Gen2 to Xi, probably the most well regarded and elaborate experience to take place in Home. For now, everything we’ve got on PlayStation Home is right over here.

news-umvc3

Don’t call it a relisting. Even though Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is once again on sale it hasn’t returned to PlayStation 3, Vita or Xbox 360 where it was delisted in December 2014. In advance of the newly announced Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite, Capcom has re-packaged UMVC3 for PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4, the latter of which is available as of today in North America.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is being re-released for current generation systems; with the “PlayStation 4” digital download version available today and the Xbox One® and Windows PC versions coming in March 2017. Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 for current-gen systems includes a new gallery mode, is packed with all previous DLC, and features an improved 1080p resolution at 60 frames per second. The re-release of Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is being offered as an individual download title on all systems for $24.99.”

I’ll keep an eye on the storefronts and headlines to see if the original games ever pop back up. Unfortunately, the only way to play the game if you owned it previously is to buy it again on a new console.

 

Active development on Asteroids: Outpost may have dried up mere months after its release in March of 2015 but the game was only removed from sale on Steam on October 26th. For nearly a year and a half the online-only MMO survival game has been on sale for $29.99 with no servers for unsuspecting players to even attempt to log in to.

Looking at the LinkedIn profiles of the three people I could find attached to the project it appears Asteroids was abandoned by May with the departure of its game designer. The Project Lead/Lead Programmer (who was also managing the community) was gone by September 2015 and Atari’s producer who was overseeing the project just recently left the company in September of this year.

With no one at the reins and a community that openly, repeatedly flagged the game it seems Valve has finally pulled the plug on Asteroids: Outpost. You can read much more about its decline on the game’s page.

news-evolve

About the only good news I have to report on Evolve Stage 2 is that the game isn’t being delisted… yet. Posts from 2K and Turtle Rock Studios on October 25th have confirmed that future development of the game has stopped and that 2K will be maintaining its servers for “the foreseeable future”.

Turtle Rock’s post by co-founder Chris Ashton is graceful and sentimental. He explains the decision straight away, stating that “this is the life of AAA game developers who aren’t self-funded and don’t own their own IP. We don’t get to make the call. We all know that going in but we still sign the dotted line because we love what we do. We are happy to have gotten the opportunity to do something risky, something new and innovative.” Fortunately this isn’t the end for Turtle Rock as they are moving on to new, as yet unannounced projects.

2K’s post is much more straightforward with a quick FAQ and confirmation that — while active development has stopped — Evolve’s servers and online functionality will be maintained, for a time. It’s on the Watch List for now but if you’ve ever been interested in the game you may want to check it out soon. 2K is becoming one of the most prolific delisters and I wouldn’t be surprised if “the foreseeable future” quickly becomes a solid date in 2017.

I jumped back into Dead Star this past weekend and recorded for just over an hour. It took a little bit to get used to the controls again but I managed to show off all three starter ships, the upgrade path for each and several rounds including one where a warship invaded our match.

There’s much more content in the game I’d love to show off but I’m afraid I won’t be high level (or skilled enough) to unlock it all before November 1st when the game goes offline. I have saved a few more recordings direct from the PlayStation 4 that I hope to get online soon. I’m also going to do one more video after November 1st to document the tutorial and freeplay modes.

For now, check out the game in prime condition above and subscribe to the Delisted Games channel on YouTube for more videos of delisted games. This video is also attached to Dead Star’s page on the site.

news-deadstar

With little notice and even less explanation, Armature Studio has announced the end of online functionality for its sci-fi, multiplayer action strategy game, Dead Star, on Steam and PlayStation 4. The game is no longer available to buy on either platform and online multiplayer will be shut down on November 1st.

“Online functionality (including multiplayer) for Dead Star will cease November 1, 2016”

Though brief, Armature’s succinct response implies that those who already own the game may be able to continue playing offline in some capacity. I haven’t touched Dead Star since April when it was given away to PlayStation Plus members but I’ll be recording this week to confirm what remains, though it looks like only the tutorial will be playable.

As for reasoning, Armature’s director of operations Jack Mathews told Kotaku, “we are shutting down the game because, bluntly, the costs of operating the game now exceed its income.” He adds, “this is purely a financial decision to ensure the best possible future for Armature Studio.”

You can read up on Dead Star’s delisting here.

news-tumbleps3

There are probably few people who are still interested in PlayStation Move games in 2016 which may be the reason that Tumble on PlayStation 3 has been delisted. It was one of the first titles shown for the PlayStation 3’s motion control peripheral back in 2010 and one that I was always waiting to go on sale. It’s a block-stacking puzzle game that received middling reviews but it always looked interesting to me.

I had checked in with the game’s PlayStation Store page earlier this year but as of October 11th it’s no longer available in the english territories. Hong Kong PSN still has it for sale as does GameStop.com where I may soon finally buy the $10 download code.

So, why would Sony delist one of their own original titles? I’m pinning it on product confusion as Tumble VR has just been released for the virtual reality headset. I don’t know if the content is similar but having two products with the same name that share some of  the same peripherals was apparently too much for Sony to bother handling. Fortunately, no other first-party PSVR titles share a name with older products and I haven’t seen any other delistings come from the lineup.

news-fatprincesscake

Sony sent out an email on October 6th to announce the “retirement” of their free-to-play mobile game, Fat Princess: Piece of Cake. The game’s online features and micro-transactions will be disabled on December 1st, 2016 (iOS, Android) and January 1st, 2017 (Vita) but so will the ability to re-download the game.

It isn’t often that a game is completely removed this way but if you have it downloaded to your Vita or phone you can continue playing in offline mode until it is removed from the system. The game also allowed players who completed Level 15 to receive a download voucher for the original multiplayer PlayStation 3 title, Fat Princess. This feature will also be disabled as of the dates above.

While the game has received generally positive ratings on all three platforms it has logged only 100 – 500,000 installs on Android with presumably far fewer active players. It also appears that developer, One Loop Games, has ceased operation; all founding members of the small team left in early 2015 after the game’s launch on Android and Vita. The combination of a dwindling user base and departed developer are most likely the cause for the game’s retirement.

The brief statement from Sony follows.