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Sony is removing the rug from under the feet of multiplayer-only games. In result, Sony is removing the rug from under the feet of gamers who still play (or might enjoy) those multiplayer-only games. Throughout the early first quarter of 2014 there will be a number of games that will cease to exist, forever.
Gamepolitics rolled out the list of services and games that Sony will be shutting down throughout early 2014, including the multiplayer servers of Gran Turismo 5 and all of the Resistance games.
These cost cutting measures don't end just there.
Sony has gone on ahead and decided to shutdown some older PS3 games, including the multiplayer-only M.A.G, or the Massive Action Game, which prompted to support up to 256 simulataneous players. SOCOM: Confrontation and SOCOM: Special Forces are also going down under. The three aforementioned games will have their life-forces cut short beginning January 28th, where-as Resistance and Gran Turismo 5 will have their multiplayer operations come to cessation beginning May 20th.
It's interesting because M.A.G was released in 2010 and just three years later we see the game having its doors closed. SOCOM: Confrontation and SOCOM: Special Forces released in 2008 and 2011 respectively.
Some of you probably already know what I'm going to say next, but I'm going to say it anyway: This is what your all-digital future will look like no matter who is in charge. Games with dedicated servers hosted by the companies WILL NOT last forever. Given the closed ecosystem of console games, it also means that player-hosted or independent servers are not possible unless you have a modded system.
In simple terms, this means that any game boasting use of the Cloud or heavy reliance on offloading computing to server networks is basically saying that it has a limited shelf life. This certainly calls into question games like Titanfall, where Microsoft and Respawn Entertainment have been desperately touting the buzzphrase of “power of the Cloud” as if it means something to anyone with an ounce of common sense. The reality is that all it means is that when Microsoft deems Titanfall something not worth the upkeep, the servers will eventually be shutdown or used for some other offloading for another game, and kaput goes Titanfall.
We're definitely starting to see console games take on the online-only atmosphere and whenever the games end up being shutdown, you lose a little bit of that console's library each and every time.
With Microsoft constantly talking about moving towards an “all digital future”, and we begin to see how older games are continually being shutdown and locked out of the annals of video game history, it's almost as if some of these companies are looking to kill off the historical value and culture of the games just to cash-in on a flash in the pan.
Expect to see more news about multiplayer and online-based games for consoles being shutdown as we continue to get deeper into the eighth generation of gaming.