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Company of Heroes Online closed

Company of Heroes Online closed

Relic and THQ are closing the Company of Heroes Online beta for 'evaluation'.

THQ and Relic have announced that they are closing the Company of Heroes Online open beta, with the announcement also seeming to confirm the cancellation of the entire game.

In a post on the official site, Relic staff announced that the open beta would close on 31st March, 2011. Players can no longer buy the COHO cash that is required to buy in-game items, though they will be able to spend remaining cash until the date of closure.

The wording around the cancellation is unclear, however. Rather than explicitly cancelling the entire game, Relic says it is going to 'evaluate the next steps for the Company of Heroes series'.

However, THQ's earnings reports claim that both Company of Heroes Online and WWE Online have been cancelled as THQ looks to 'reevaluate its strategy of adapting certain Western content for free-to-play online games in Asian markets.'

THQ's CEO, Brian Farrell, has since explained that 'developing great content, most of it IP owned by THQ. And the concept of converting some of these concepts for a market -- though Korea's still a great market -- it just wasn't the top of our list for focus.'

Joystiq reports that the cancellation of both WWE Online and Company of Heroes Online has resulted in a hit of $9.9 million USD for THQ.

Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

16 Comments

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Glix 3rd February 2011, 16:58 Quote
I am a RTS fan since I played AoE, and I own CoH, but I don't touch it at all now, but I'm dying for some good old turtleling AoE wall battles. Does that make CoH a fad? :D

Shame no respect is paid to the dev who died in a car accident.
supaste 3rd February 2011, 17:25 Quote
If you want something similar to AoE keep an eye on this http://wildfiregames.com/0ad/ Free, open source and 3d in development
jcb121 3rd February 2011, 18:48 Quote
it was open beta? even here in the uk?
comeradealexi 3rd February 2011, 19:06 Quote
I love the orignal COH's and the two expansions. What every one wanted was a Russian expansion pack! not the same game re-released for free!? :S
digitaldunc 3rd February 2011, 19:45 Quote
Shame, was playing it with some people that were reluctant to buy COH, despite my pestering.

I didn't really play it *that* much but the unit upgrades seemed largely superfluous.
comeradealexi 3rd February 2011, 21:31 Quote
The COH community wanted a Russian front expansion pack not a re-relase of the current game for free and just slightly different :S
Orlandu84 4th February 2011, 00:27 Quote
I agree with comeradealexi for the most part - I think that the community was open to an expansion of COH not an MMO of it. The beta had caught my attention, but I could never find enough time to even download it. I really have to wonder why THQ thought that COH would be a draw for Asian communities as a free to play MMO. COH is not Starcraft.
Baz 4th February 2011, 12:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glix
Shame no respect is paid to the dev who died in a car accident.


Relic Announced the Brian Wood Memorial Game Design Internship last week. Seems a fitting memorial to the guy. Hopefully his memory and dedication to the CoH games will spur Relic on to make CoH2 just as good as the original, which I still play at least a few times a week.
Baz 4th February 2011, 12:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by comeradealexi
I love the orignal COH's and the two expansions. What every one wanted was a Russian expansion pack! not the same game re-released for free!? :S

I think THQ has finally realised this. I myself, and many of my mates have bought CoH, many of them buying all 3 games at full price, over £100 of investment. Release a new game, it sells for £30 a pop, sell 2 million units on PC, make £30 million quids!


I'd never have spent that on micro transactions. I think the western approach to free to play games is "it's free to play, I'm not spending any money!" whereas in Asia they're more open on spending lots of little bits.
Baz 4th February 2011, 12:09 Quote
Triple post I know, but Free to Play games shouldn't require 8GB downloads. Even on a good broadband connection, that's a few hours of downloading. What casual players are going to have the patience to wait that long?
Hrodwulf666 4th February 2011, 13:36 Quote
Dont get me wrong, I was obsessed with COH and OF, After TOV I felt they were changing too much too often, when I played COH online I enjoyed it but it wasnt enough to tip the balance, Turning it into an mmo was not the solution, they could have fleshed out the series with an expansion rather than continually messing round with the mechanics and play style, it just feels like a confused mess now and when my favorite mods stopped working I knew it was time to throw the towel in. I hope whatever they do next will honor the memory of the original COH and their departed team member.
digitaldunc 4th February 2011, 19:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baz
Triple post I know, but Free to Play games shouldn't require 8GB downloads. Even on a good broadband connection, that's a few hours of downloading. What casual players are going to have the patience to wait that long?

In its defense the client did re-use vanilla COH game files instead of duplicating the content which I thought was quite sensible, but I see your point -- casual players presumably wouldn't have the original game(s), and people that do wouldn't be bothering with a potentially crippled copy of COH.
tennisball 4th February 2011, 19:47 Quote
I'd rather they spent the time on the full game, to be honest.
Baz 5th February 2011, 13:46 Quote
The retail game is still good fun, and the balance beta bodes very well with plenty of bug fixes coming.
Krayzie_B.o.n.e. 6th February 2011, 05:45 Quote
free 2 play doesn't work in the states. just make a dam good game and sell it instead of half ass games that nickel and dime you to death. The business decisions of THQ seem to be made by people who just last week were on French Fry duty. What a waste of time and resources.
Penfolduk01 7th February 2011, 02:28 Quote
I've never played COH, so I can't comment on whether an expansion pack would have been a better route to go down for the franchise.

The potential earnings in having a successful MMO are huge. Just look at World of Warcraft and Starcraft.
There is also huge potential in micro-transactions, as the Eastern Asian market has shown. So I'm not surprised that THQ took a risk on trying to crack the Eastern Asian market. It looks like that risk hasn't paid off, but that's the business. Getting a successful MMO is a nightmare in itself, with many projects falling by the wayside. Or having trouble with the business model. Take "Lord of the Rings Online", Something I'd have thought would be a definite shoe-in for taking "Warcrack's" crown. They've tripled their revenues by offering basic free-to-play, with paid for bolt-ons .

Trying to crack the notoriously difficult Eastern-Asian market at the same time may have been a step too far.
But I applaud THQ for taking the risk, and I hope what they have learned helps them makes more successful games in future. If the financial loss doesn't cripple them.

Maybe they will now get round to doing the COH Russian Front expansion the fans apparently are calling for. After the loss on the MMO, releasing something like that may be a relatively easy way to generate some profit.
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