When the pair of 16-bit Disney platformers disappeared from Steam and GOG.com earlier thisSummer, it wasn’t too unfathomable to see today’s news coming: Aladdin and The Lion King are coming back. The $30 ‘Disney Classic Games’ collection will be released digitally and physically on October 29th with a few unexpected additions to the package.
Debuting on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One (with a PC release likely headed to Steam), the package is being helmed by the venerable preservationists at Digital Eclipse (Disney Afternoon Collection, Mega Man Legacy). As such, you can expect the usual upscaled graphics, a rewind feature, save states, and the ability to watch a playthrough of each game and take control at any point.
Like previous collections, you’ll also get a “curated explorable museum” of behind-the-scenes art and interviews on each release. But what’s most interesting is the inclusion of multiple versions of each game, from the flagship Genesis and Super NES originals, to Game Boy iterations, and even a not-seen-since-1993 “tradeshow demo” of Aladdin.
If you did happen to own the delisted versions of The Lion King or Aladdin you can still download them from your purchase history on Steam or GOG.com.
About a year and a half after the Disney Canada team shut down the original, long-running Club Penguin, the same fate has fallen on their much younger, mobile follow-up, Club Penguin Island. A farewell announcement was made on September 27th revealing that the game would be around at least until the end of the year. The team’s farewell post can be found here and follows below:
To our Club Penguin Fans and Family:
There’s no easy way to say this but after 13 incredible years, Club Penguin will be sunsetting at the end of this year. We’ll be providing players with all the necessary information in the coming weeks via in-game messages and updates here on Island News.
Thanks to you, Club Penguin has been more than a game; it’s been a global community where you have gathered to socialize and express yourselves. In a time when games come and go within months, it was one of the longest-running kids’ games of all time and at its height, had over 200 million accounts. Players from countries around the world showed their commitment to the game by adopting 25 million Puffles and creating over 200,000 videos.
When we replaced the original Club Penguin game a year and a half ago, we always strived to make Club Penguin Island the best mobile successor to the original game. From day one of development, Club Penguin Island has been a true passion project for everyone here at Disney but, the time has come for the party to end.
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your continued dedication to the Club Penguin and Club Penguin Island games and for being a member of our family. We are so grateful to have shared in this journey with you. We’re excited to bring you more new experiences around all of Disney’s beloved characters and stories across all platforms.
Please look out for more information soon and as always, waddle on.
– Club Penguin Team
Unfortunately, this wasn’t a decision that was left up to the team. According to Kotaku, they were informed just days before of the decision to shut down the game and lay off the team.
One former employee, who is anonymous for fear of retribution, told Kotaku that he felt “blindsided” by the news. Although employees working on the game knew Club Penguin Island wasn’t doing well, he said, the studio had been pitching other projects. “We were told three weeks ago that we’d been green-lit and would have jobs for at least 2 years while we built and launched a new product! The whole studio was basically popping champagne, only to have that pulled out from under us by someone way up the chain at Disney.” –Kotaku
I’ll add the game to the Watch List calendar for a temporary December 31st deadline and be back with more when the team updates again.
When Gazillion first announced that Marvel Heroes would be shutting down the game was scheduled to go offline on December 31st, giving players over a month to enjoy the game for a final time. Amid last week’s tweets from now-former employees however, the game was rumored to be shut down as soon as Friday, November 24th. The holiday weekend came and went without notice from Gazillion or Marvel but as of the afternoon of Monday, November 27th, the game was gone. Marvel Heroes’ twitter account posted a final farewell message:
“It is with great sadness that we announce the closing of Gazillion Entertainment. As a result, we are no longer able to operate Marvel Heroes Omega until December 31 as originally planned. Instead, Marvel Heroes Omega will be sunset immediately on all platforms and will no longer be available as soon as this process is completed. The company would like to sincerely thank its fans and employees for all the support over the years of development and live service.”
The game’s subreddit group tallied the losses throughout the day which ended when the game’s homepage and forums were finally taken down. The Watch List calendar and the game’s page on the site have been updated to reflect these final details.