Worlds Adrift to close in July with ‘End of the World Party’

    
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Say farewell to grappling hooks, sky piracy, endless exploration, and one promising SpatialOS MMORPG, because Worlds Adrift has announced that it is closing its doors in July 2019. This sounds primarily because the team couldn’t get enough players to make a profit.

“Making such an ambitious game was always going to be a challenge and we love the game we’ve built together with our community,” the team posted in its shutdown FAQ. “However, Worlds Adrift has not captured the imagination of as many people as we needed to make it commercially viable.”

If the game has to go out, however, it’s going to go out with a bang. Bossa is making all cosmetic items in the shop free for players from now through July, and there will be an “End of the World Party” for the final hurrah. Some recent purchases can be refunded, and the studio said that it is gifting a couple of games to all founders.

Worlds Adrift has suffered through a bumpy year, starting with PvP servers that quickly turned into a griefer’s paradise. A full server wipe happened last October for an update, followed by the too-little, too-late decision to add PvE servers to the mix. The spat between Improbable and Unity earlier this year helped not at all, and by February, the studio freedly admitted that it was struggling to draw in a significant population.

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April-Rain
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April-Rain

I was super excited for worlds adrift. After playing in Alpha in which I did have a good time once you met a few people and start helping each other. I remember at the time it was a super steep learning curve though.

In the end I decided to sit back and wait for a more polished game before committing.

After launch I was going to purchase it on a few occasions but it was the height of the badly implemented PvP and it just being a gankfest was in most comments on the web/ steam. I remember the devs being a little arrogant in the request for pve servers from the start and how good it would be pvp.

All that put me off for good but still sad to hear the news.

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Dragon Whimsy

The idea was interesting but every time I watched a stream of someone playing World’s Adrift it always looked super unpolished. That and the ragdoll physics were a little too ragdoll for my tastes.

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Michael18

Very nice of them to take the time for doing such a video instead of just sending out a press release.

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Mark Jacobs

That’s too bad. I thought the concept had a ton of potential. :(

It doesn’t appear that Bossa is shutting down though, so good luck to them with their next game. I hope it succeeds.

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PanagiotisLial1

The fact they chose steam played a role too. Steam is so good for single player games but mmos? especially having it as only option to play the game? There is an army of trolls that will reight “objective” negative reviews either for their own fun or simply because they like another game that competes on the same field of gamers. Unless Valve stops the user-review system and hires an amount of professional reviewers steam will always be a disastrous option for indie mmos

smuggler-in-a-yt
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smuggler-in-a-yt

I’d love to see this one as an Overthinking –

“What MMO left the most on the table when it shut down?”

Worlds Adrift has a fantastic premise and some intriguing gameplay. It’s a shame they couldn’t find the right blend of broad appeal and niche play to make it work for everyone.

Personally, if I had a D&D license in my back pocket, I’d be looking to buy/license whatever they did, theme it with a Spelljammer texture pack, and just sell that. People would go nuts.

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PanagiotisLial1

I agree with you but it seems they werent so good at promoting it too. I never saw any ads left and right(I saw countless from Albion Online for example which is indie too) and they didnt use twitch enough to promote it and even they didnt use their newsletters/mail enough. I got subscribed in ages and rarely got anything. I think if they were more insisting and hired someone who knows how to promote their product it could had been salvaged. Also, last but not least they chose the worst platform to run it through(steam) instead have their own client. I would advise any mmo developer to boicott steam as its just a place to troll their games and lose, not gain, popularity – and keep in mind most trolls either do it for fun or are fanboys from competitor mmos

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NecroFox4

Not surprised in the least. It was a lot of fun, but entirely too harsh. Airship building was super fun, but in the end, it was too much work for too little reward.

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Arktouros

But they added a PvE server…I mean surely that was going to save it, right? The PvE players wouldn’t abandon the game after saying they would play it if the game had a PvE server!

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NecroFox4

More like the rampant PvP Bro Culture mob chased off those of us who were interested early on with all their “carebears must die” superiority complex nonsense.

You made your bed. Enjoy the dirt nap!

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Arktouros

Except after that they reversed course on that, alienating that “PvP Bro Culture” in favor of Rainbow Sunshine Carebears and refitted the game to support a PvE server ruleset.

What happened? First, all the Sunshine Carebear crowd jeered in triumph over the PvPers because now the game finally recognized they were the real audience the game should have been going after. Second, the game died. I mean why would the game die if it was catering to that “superior” audience? What happened to all the people who would have played it if it had a PvE server?

The lesson here is don’t forsake the audience you do have for an audience you might have.

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Kross Vilalobos

Hilarious that you believe the “PVP Bro Culture” as you would put it would have lead the game to exist and continue to live this long if not longer. The original audience already had the game in a huge negative light between the superiority complex and seething hate for people who don’t enjoy the game the way they do.

Not saying the “Sunshine Carebears” as you would put it helped a lot but they did bring the game from mostly negative to a very positive steam review that alone brought in a lot of looks and people and kept it alive longer than the expiration date for the game seemed to be originally.

The actual lesson here is advertise your game better and don’t completely rely on steam. As already seen there’s a lot of trolls on there that would buy a game just to vote it down because they felt like it and refund it.

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Jack Kerras

(Their advertising was actually a part of the problem; their advertisement and trailers focused a lot on idyllic landscapes and flying with friends, not so much on getting disassembled by kill teams on newbie islands on spawn, and the latter is what a lot of folks ran into.)

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Jack Kerras

The game had already died.

They had pretty major huge extra influx of people during the PvE launch and the time immediately following that, but the game had already bled so much there wasn’t enough to save.

Also: the hardcore PvP audience is notoriously noisy and, from a developer standpoint, utterly useless.

Those folks think they’re incredibly important, but they’re hugely damaging to the things that they like in a lot of cases, and Worlds Adrift was one of those.

If you blame anyone that’s not you and yours – or you blame PvE servers for the way this has gone in the end – it’s for lack of research, not because you have some especially accurate view of the world you’re observing.

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Daniel Miller

Well unlike most, i was a founder. But i found the game hard and boring. Never got off starter island. Nevervmade an airship. So i feel they promised many things but didn’t let the player achieve them. Hence low player count.

As a ks mmo, it didn’t last long after launch. I compare this game to Citridal forged with fire. They both launched simular time, both mmos, but citridal was was easy to get into and is fun.

Ironically, there free island creater may be the best thing they achieved. And hey SoTA should join them soon.

Worlds adrift can join Wild west online.

What does this say for recent ks mmo?

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PanagiotisLial1

No offense but, curious, havent ever seen you say one positive thing for any mmo posted on MOP(but commenting for many that they are boring and you were not able to learn how to play them), which makes me wonder if you first of all, you like mmos? Unfortunately for all their progress mmos arent good for those who like mostly single player games

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Sean Barfoot

There are far more mediocre MMOs than good ones, to be fair.

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Daniel Miller

I have liked many. Grew up on FFXI. Liked it, Liked Warhammer, it was shut down. Liked Vanguard it was shut down. Liked Archeage before it became server merges, lose everything and heavy pvp. I liked Korean Bless Online, not NA. I like KR and JP Soulworker, I like Astellia, Aion, Air is ok. ESO is ok. Citridel forged with fire is fun as well. Peria Chronicles CBT was fun too.

Many I have liked, but I don’t like clones of other games per say. And it is true many of the most hyped west games, Gw2, BDo, B&S, and such I don’t care for.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

i played the game for 4 hours on the first day of alpha. spawned on an island with 4 other randoms. we managed to build a bad air ship and go exploring in those 4 hours.

which is why i didn’t end up playing despite loving the premise, because it gave me insanely bad fear of heights.

but if someone can’t figure out the survival builder genre basics at play in the game pretty quickly idk what to say. the problems with the game isn’t one of dificulty

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PanagiotisLial1

Yes phobias are very hard to overcome – I wonder if other people had same problems too

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StormKat

SoTA still has a small, active community. Those that still support it are getting what they want out of a game and I see nothing wrong with that. I don’t see it going anywhere as long as those people wish to keep supporting it. The game was not something I would return to, however. My understanding is WWO was a disaster and switching it up a bit with steampunk elements will likely not alter that assessment. KS anything has its obvious risks and you have to know that when you support anything in that way. I also agree with Sean’s comment. What have we been given over the past few years that would make any of us claim that non-KS MMOs are in any better shape?

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Sray

Worlds Adrift isn’t a kickstarter game. Bossa Studios funded it the old fashioned way: they found venture capital investors who gave them the money.

Pepperzine
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Pepperzine

I don’t play the game, but strongly believe they should release the code so those who enjoy it can still play. That should be the normal.

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PanagiotisLial1

Yes or make a version that people can run their personal lower cap servers

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Tanek

This assumes that the code/assets of a closed game have no further use for the company. If it becomes the new normal it may not be reasonably (or legally?) possible to then sell or reuse parts of the work for other projects.

PlasmaJohn
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PlasmaJohn

Except they’ve licensed SpatialOS and they do not have the rights to redistribute that.

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Sray

Releasing server code is never as easy as just giving it away. Often they are built on second party engines that you have no ownership of, and no right to distribute freely without prior agreement. Furthermore, there’s the possibility that your server code shares network protocols with other games in your company’s library, exposing you to security leaks by distributing that code.

But most importantly, there’s the fact that it’s a lot of work to put into a product that didn’t make them any money: if memory serves me correctly, this game used Steamworks for your login, as opposed to a Bossa Studios account. That means you’re basically asking them to build an independent launcher so it doesn’t require Steam to work… for a game they’re shutting down.

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Tanek

I always feel vaguely guilty when a game that looked interesting closes down and I have never played it. Logically I know that there is only so much time and money available to me to support games, and having one more player would not have saved this one. But still. Sorry to see something that looked promising not work out for whatever reason.
—————————–

Also, a post before 8am? Daily Grind is not the first out for the day? What madness is this?! :P

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PanagiotisLial1

Generally speaking, how many of us gamer say they want to see something different, and when its out there we just go and play a mainstream title that just has pretty graphs and a popular setting?

There isnt a bigger example than Project Gorgon. Many of us voted it best indie game, most promishing etc and praised it – and it was worth all that but how many truelly play it? The game runs only through steam so what you see on steamcharts is exactly accurate. If PG closes too in a year or so, we will have voted that, with our wallet

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Adam Russell

Played PG as much as I could but content production was too slow so I ran out of stuff to do.

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PanagiotisLial1

Its a sandbox – it banks a lot on player driven content, meaning it works different than games like ESO. They mostly give us the tools to choose our activities in sandboxes. Of course such gameplay isnt for all but there is a good amount who likes sandboxes still. Added bonus is the non forced PVP – its mostly a PVE sandbox. Other than that its a couple that develops mainly and they bring a third person occasionally I think so the speed sure is lower cause they didnt get funded much like the other projects. Just imagine what they could do with a team of 5+

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Schmidt.Capela

Added bonus is the non forced PVP – its mostly a PVE sandbox.

Nope. It was very much forced PvP everywhere from the start until they added the “PvE” server, and even in the “PvE” server part of the world — which gives the best rewards, including being the only place where you could reliably get the best schematics for building the ships, and that you need to cross to switch between the western and the eastern PvE lands — was forced PvP.

That, BTW, is the reason I never purchased the game. I liked the focus on exploring, the steampunk aesthetics, and the ship building aspects, but I will never, ever, purchase any game where I can’t completely opt out of PvP without suffering any kind of handicap or limitation.

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PanagiotisLial1

I understand your confusion but we were referencing Project Gorgon above

PG is short form of it

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Schmidt.Capela

Oops. Sorry, I should have paid more attention when responding.

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PanagiotisLial1

No worries, we werent so clear either

deekay_000
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deekay_000

i supported PG while knowing it wasn’t for me personally. i’ve shown it to friends i thought might be interested and such and even poked at it enough to get a vague shadowy first hand sense of it for the purpose of those tellings.

it’s just that invariably alot of the people i know that would love to play games like PG don’t have time for games like PG. alot of their mmoing these days is an occasional tear into an arpg or flipping items on an AH in some bad wow clone or wow itself.

mmorpg’s are time and money intensive games and their audiences increasing point those resources elsewhere other than at mmorpg in general. it’s not that they are not into these small games, it’s just increasingly they have little time for gaming at all, and might at best have enough time and learned skill in the area to do some of the more tertiary forms of progression while hitting up the latest quest gate with their partner now and then kind of thing. this has a knock on effect on smaller games in a big way over time. especially as those games don’t have the resources to respond to every whim and feedback demand of the well established to be rather demandatory mmorpg playerbase.

anyways i remember when project gorgon had like single digit players 10+ years ago. i don;t think it’ll shut down just by virtue of the developer and his wife make it in their own time even when it has been at best a pipe dream. i feel like he’d shell out the $30 for a server enough for even like 20 people to play it if need be. legit.

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rawhunger

“Demandatory”… I like that word.

PlasmaJohn
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PlasmaJohn

Logically I know that there is only so much time and money available to me to support games, and having one more player would not have saved this one.

I really desperately wish people would get out of the mindset that commercial games require “support”. These are for-profit projects. The onus on making it viable is on the studio and publisher not the players. Poor research and/or poor execution deserve to be punished. Supporting that is just an abusive relationship.

The target audience for gankbox games is far smaller than so many of these Kickstarters assumed. EvE Online has a ridiculously low new player to subscriber conversion rate (1-3%). That’s just poor research.

Of those that actually tried WA I’m hearing rumblings that many got tired of the multiple and frequent progression wipes and were waiting for the studio to slow (or eliminate) the pace.

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Tanek

I don’t think that word means what you think it means.

First, yes, a game has to earn its playerbase. You seem to think maybe I am advocating buying games as a handout to them? Why would that be the case? You’ll have to explain that one to me.

Second, companies generally do require money as a form of support to keep going. This includes game companies. Giving them a thumbs up on social media is all well and good, but at the end of the day, if they have no money, the lights are still going out. So you seeing “support” as such a vile negative confuses me as well.

Third, I was more referring to the resources (time and money mostly) I have to buy and play games. Even if I had been talking about direct support for games or developers, I don’t think that would be such a bad thing. Yes, I have been burned by a couple things in the past, but that just taught me to look into what I am potentially buying a bit more closely before jumping in.

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DeadlyAccurate

But no one says, “I need to support Amazon by buying all my movies there,” or “I should support Ford more by buying their vehicles.” Why do games need support by any meaning of the word?

Covynant001
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Covynant001

Sure they do, all the time in fact if it’s a product or service they believe in or want to see continue.

From purchasing from local merchants and restaurants to people like my departed father who only bought Pontiacs his entire life.

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Michael18

People don’t say “I needd to support Amazon” because Amazon is doing extremely well anyway.

But I actually do say “I need to support that cute little book store across the street from where I live” and buy all my books from them instead of Amazon.

deekay_000
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deekay_000

you’ve never heard of #supportlocalbusiness?

it’s a meme older than anyone that comments or posts on this site.