Kickstarted Jane Austen MMORPG Ever, Jane closed its doors over the holidays

I just can't bring myself to make a Never, Jane joke here, sorry

    
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Well crap – just when we thought we’d escaped 2020 without too many MMO sunsets, another one sneaks in at the last minute to join the pile – and we didn’t even know until yesterday. Yes, unfortunately it looks as if Jane Austen-themed MMORPG Ever, Jane sunsetted over the holidays, and yes, it was simply a matter of money.

Back in August of last year, studio 3 Turn Productions and lead dev Judy Tyrer announced that 2020’s hardships had ensured the team couldn’t launch the game as planned. It ran a survey of players asking whether they’d be willing to subscribe to keep the game up. The survey was apparently quite positive, and by the end of November, both sub and free players were able to access the latest beta patch.

But by early December, the developers were already admitting subs weren’t where they needed to be: $500-$600 monthly to cover servers and licensing. “We are at 10% of our monthly subscription goal,” the studio wrote. “We have until Dec. 31 to reach 100% or we will have to shut the servers down.” The game didn’t even make it that long. On December 11th, the team admitted defeat. The closure was set and executed on December 20th, with the game never even having left beta.

“To avoid additional server costs, Ever,Jane servers will be going down on Dec. 20, 2020. It’s been a great run and we have enjoyed serving you with our fun little game. We hope you have enjoyed it as well.”

We’d been covering the game since 2013, when it was still planning a 2016 launch. It was Kickstarted for over $100,000 that same year, with its unique pitch as a purely roleplay-centric setting where players were debutantes and shopkeeps rather than murderhobos. It never had a massive following, but it was one of the more original MMOs our genre’s ever seen, so we’re surely sad to see it fall.

There’s a small silver lining here, though, so if you happen to be sitting on a nice chunk of money, you might be able to save the game: “As of now, the game is for sale. Please contact customer support if you would like to make a query.”

Source: Official site, Facebook. Cheers, Flatline.
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Whatsit Tooya

Something I haven’t heard anyone else bring up:

I tried this game on three separate occasions. The community was just not there and the main reason for that was a lack of activities. I never saw more than… about 5 other people online with me. Keep in mind that at least two of those other times were after updates, when I expected good activity.

I also remember that on one of my logins I saw that there was a vigorous conversation going on between two or three other people about something that I just simply wasn’t in the loop to understand (since the game basically centers around gossip), and I felt like I was back in high school watching people trade opinions I didn’t understand over events I didn’t understand concerning people I didn’t know. Hard to get into for sure and I could tell most of the community was quite seasoned.

I diagnose this game with a poor choice of community design, primarily. A real shame, but that’s how things are. Much love to the people who poured their hearts into this and I hope they at least got something out of it.

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Peregrine Falcon

Unfortunately, I think more people have commented in this thread about it that ever actually played the game.

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Pandalulz

Pssst… Hex shut down on December 31.

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Ann Marie Hake

I wish I knew about it. I’m returning to MMORPGs and trying all sorts out and that might have appealed to me.

miol
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miol

For what it’s worth, I will also miss Ever, Jane memes!

Nevertheless, respect for what they were trying to accomplish!

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Schlag Sweetleaf

here’s one for you, miol :)

what ever happened to ever jane.jpg
miol
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miol

Thank you, Schlag!

How bittersweet! :’)

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Paragon Lost

My wife actually cackled and laughed so hard she had to use the restroom, when I show her the meme. Lol Nicely played Schlag!

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Schlag Sweetleaf

My wife gives me side eyes when I’m ‘creating‘.She thinks it a colossal waste of time because there is no income attached to my ‘labors’. She doesnt understand anecdotes like yours comprise payment in full in my mind.:)

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Paragon Lost

That’s because what you do feeds the soul, which is it’s own form of payment. Not sure if I believe in such a concept as a soul but I do believe in mental health and your creative efforts as we’ve seen on this website definitely help everyone feel better through humor.

Andrew Ross
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Andrew Ross

You ever shown her the comments you get, Schlag? Maybe that would help her understand.

…that being said, I’m quite single these days, so… ^_^;

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

Oh damn!

Pepperzine
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Pepperzine

Did the people who are bummed this is sunsetting subscribe to help with server costs? Sucks when a game people play and support is shuttered, but the market spoke.

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Jack Pipsam

That’s a shame, they really seemed to care, I mean you have too with a concept like Ever Jane.
Perhaps the community can figure something out, but if they were unable to cover those costs with their players then that’s sadly not looking good.

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Peregrine Falcon

Wow, they couldn’t get 40 people to subscribe to their game?

Well, hopefully that means that game developers now realize that a non-combat MMO is NOT what the customers want.

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treehuggerhannah

I don’t necessarily think that follows.

A non-combat MMO could work if the other activities were interesting and had broad appeal.

For example, A Tale in the Desert doesn’t have a huge playerbase but has sustained itself for quite a long time.

I think the “broad appeal” part is where Ever Jane faltered, not the lack of combat per se. This game seemed mostly aimed toward fans of a specific named author in a pretty specific genre of literature that would not typically have much if any crossover with the MMO audience.

I don’t think that “Most MMO players aren’t highly dedicated Jane Austen fans” automatically translates into “Players only want combat.”

I would love a non-combat MMO. I’m super excited for Book of Travels (which isn’t totally non-combat but that isn’t the main focus.) I am the audience for this type of game… but I have zero interest in an MMO about parties and carriage rides.

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

I think its because of mixed expectations for kickstarter.

Some projects are actively giving goodies if they reach a certain milestone implying an investor will always or should always get something for kickstarting.

If folks looked at kickstarting as literally ‘Hey here is some money cause I like your idea. I don’t expect anything in return and I’m not sure if you are gonna make it cause of any number of reasons but still good luck.” then I think kickstarting is fine.

That said, the company doing the kickstarting DOES need to make a good faith effort to product the product they pitched or explain why they cannot.

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Ironwu

Not a fan of the basic book/film genre. So no interest in the MMO.

I think the developers simply did not understand their audience, if there ever was one.

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starbuck1771

There really wasn’t one. From what I understood they game centered around Discussion & Gossip. Heck I don’t need a game to do that there’s enough of that in real life.

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Paragon Lost

I wanted this to be successful, unfortunately my concern that it was a bit too niche in a niche genre would mean that it wouldn’t have enough subscribers to make it financially viable. Seems that this has indeed panned out to be true. :(