Although it was just officially confirmed by Sony Europe, the writing has been on the wall since the end of January for the PlayStation VR shooter from 2017, StarBlood Arena. When developer WhiteMoon Dreams first received word from Sony that the game’s servers were going to be shut down, CEO Jay Koottarappallil took to the r/PSVR subreddit to announce the news directly to the community:
“Sony called earlier to let me know that they were shutting down servers. The call was something along the lines of “This is always a very hard time, but its time to shut down the servers”. There wasn’t a whole lot of detail past that and there was no option for us to support servers ourselves, much less make any new releases.
At the very least, we would have liked to have the option to pay for servers ourselves. Overall, I wish we controlled the IP that we created with SBA, because there’s so much more of this we want you all to see; but we’re not big and powerful enough yet to be able to command that.”
– Jay Koottarappallil, CEO WhiteMoon Dreams
Since January 2019 Koottarappallil has continued to respond to comments on his post but as of this writing no agreement has been reached with Sony to hand over the servers to WhiteMoon Dreams. According to Sony’s statement, StarBlood Arena’s multiplayer and online features will no longer be available as of July 25th, 2019. And as the game’s single player component also required a connection to the servers, the game will be completely unplayable on the same date.
Sony has already removed the title from sale on the PlayStation Store but PlayStation Plus subscribers who claimed it when it was added to the Instant Game Collection can still find it in their Download List. StarBlood Arena was also released on disc but given the online requirements physical copies will become unplayable on July 25th as well. I’ve added the date to the Watch List calendar and will work up a page for the game soon.