As if licensing deals, trademarks, and bankruptcies weren’t enough to threaten a game’s existence, we now have the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (the GDPR) that could impact any online-enabled game. The first casualty is Uber Entertainment’s Super Monday Night Combat which the studio had managed to keep running since 2012 despite having under 200 daily players for years.
The cost to update the game to comply with the GDPR is simply too much to justify that small of a playerbase. Uber Entertainment posted to the game’s Steam Community on April 26th to announce that the game would be removed from sale immediately and that the servers would be shut down on May 23rd, 2018, the day before the GDPR goes into effect. The full announcement follows:
We want to thank all of you for your support of Super Monday Night Combat. Your passion is what made this game a pleasure to work on.
However, due to the upcoming European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) deadline which is May 24th, we are sad to announce that we will be shutting down SMNC on that day. The game will remain active through May 23rd, 2018. Once our servers have been taken down, you will no longer be able to play SMNC in any game mode, so please make sure to get those matches in while you can.
As a special thank you to everyone that is still playing, from now until May 22nd, 2018, we will be giving you a gift of $10,000 of in-game currency. In order to get this, please contact our support team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or opening a ticket at http://support.uberent.com/ and be sure to include your ubernet login name. The support team will respond to your request as soon as possible.
Once again, thank you for your continued support and passion and we look forward to seeing you all again in our other games.
Speaking to Polygon, Uber explained a bit more about the legacy netcode that Super Monday Night Combat is built on and the work it would take to update the game.
“Uber […] said Super Monday Night Combat uses an older version of its multiplayer back-end system (called UberNet) that is not GDPR compliant. Making it compliant would require either rewriting large parts of that system or porting Super Monday Night Combat to Microsoft’s PlayFab platform. In both cases, Uber said, the cost of doing so exceeds the budget allocated to the now six-year-old game.”