City of Heroes shutting down
September 3, 2012 // 8:20 a.m.
Superhero MMO City of Heroes is set to close its doors by the end of the year and NCSoft is disbanding its developer, Paragon Studios.
The game will receive no further development and the servers are expected to be turned off later this year. All current subscriptions for the game will be discontinued effective immediately and exact dates of when the game will go offline will be made available in the next few weeks.
'The team here at Paragon deserves special praise for all that we have accomplished over the last five years,' said Paragon Studios community manager Andy Belford. 'To any potential studios looking to grow your team; hire these people. You won't regret it.'
City of Heroes first launched in 2004 and is credited as the first superhero-based MMO. The game saw its first expansion, City of Villains, added in 2005.
NCSoft picked up the game's intellectual property from original developer, Cryptic Sudios, in 2007. The Cryptic staff were brought onboard by NCSoft and reformed as Paragon Studios in 2009 to continue development on the game.
The MMO has previously been celebrated in the gaming press for its flexible character creator and the implementation of user generated missions. It has also clocked up an impressive list of awards throughout its lifespan from several publications.
'Focus on the good things of CoH and Paragon Studios,' added Belford. 'Don't dwell on the "how" or the "why", but rather join us in celebrating the legacy of an amazing partnership between the players and the development team.'
City of Heroes switched to a free-to-play model in 2011. At its peak in 2005, the game had approximately 200,000 subscribers. Financial reports published by NCSoft in 2008 showed this figure had dropped to just under 125,000 in 2008.