Did our article yesterday on MMOs in limbo knock one loose? Probably not, but one of them is sunsetting all the same: Firefall. Late last night, an unknown Red 5 staffer posted the sad news.
“With heavy hearts, we regret to inform you that after much review and analysis, Red 5 Studios have decided to suspend the Firefall efforts on 7th, July 2017. Thank you for being an important part of the Firefall experience and for your loyalty and dedication to the online community. Your efforts and loyalty will not go without recognition, however. Firefall is currently developing a mobile version of the game and all of Firefall’s founders and players will be rewarded greatly in the new game. We will be sure to provide everyone with more updates as we have them. Thank you for your support and enthusiasm throughout the years; we will see you at the next battle.”
Yay, a mobile game. You could also head over and pick up your credit toward Mark Kern’s new game, Em-8ER.
It’s been a wild ride for Firefall. It had already weathered one mess after another — the e-sports bus fiasco and suspension of PvP and former CEO Mark Kern hoopla and “pre-launch reorganization” — in the lead up to launch. But in 2015, Red 5 missed payroll, followed by a brutal company meeting, late salaries, and the inevitable “reorganization” layoffs and departures, which didn’t help the bug-laden Razor’s Edge patch. In May of 2016, Red 5’s Chinese owner The9 traded part of its stake in the studio to a Cayman Islands cashmere manufacturer and announced mobile and console ports for Firefall, but that company’s stock crashed soon after and trading was suspended. Then Mark Kern even resurfaced to offer to buy the game that fired him. By July, more layoffs apparently took the rest of the US team. In August, the game went offline without notice, then again in January of this year, supposedly because of datacenter issues.
This time, however, the game isn’t coming up again. Our condolences to all affected players.
“Red 5 Studios has decided to shut down Firefall effectively tommorow, July 7th. This means that today is the last day to claim Firefall credit via our founders’s program. Since we do not control Firefall’s servers, we will have no way to verify founders when the servers go down. We are saddened by this news, and apologize for the short notice. Please help spread the word so that any remaining Firefall vets or forum users can claim credit for Em-8ER’s future virtual cosmetics store.”