Microsoft Studios Halts Development of Age of Empires Online

Age of Empires: Online, the game that brings the classic strategy civilization-building series to the free-to-play format, will no longer be releasing new content.

Gas Powered Games and Microsoft Studios explained that their decision to halt active development was due to their financial situation. "Why no more content?" says the game's official blog. "Because creating top-tier content, as we have been for the last year and a half, is very expensive—too expensive to maintain for long, as it turns out. We can no longer afford to keep creating it. AOEO already has a very large amount of high-quality, hand-crafted entertainment, and adding more is no longer cost-effective."

However, the announcement also makes it quite clear that this doesn't mean Age of Empires: Online is going away. For current players, nothing will change, as all existing content will remain. Gas Powered Games and Microsoft Studios will continue to support the game and host community events. However, "Fixing any remaining bugs and addressing balance issues will be slower and, frankly, more difficult for the team. Some may, in fact, be unfixable," states the blog post.

Though AoE: Online will remain for now, it's difficult to see the game being able to sustain itself for much longer. The life of a MMO, especially a free-to-play one, is heavily reliant on new content to re-energize veteran players and entice new players into playing. Hopefully, AoE: Online will see some better days.

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  • Pinhedd
    perhaps game studios will now stop creating free-to-play/pay-to-win bullshit
  • A Bad Day
    pinheddperhaps game studios will now stop creating free-to-play/pay-to-win bullshit
    There's a fine line between F2P and P2W...

    Some games do it well, others, well, they don't last long.
    Kinda sucks because I like GPG as a studio.

    I wonder what there next project is? ;)
    LORD_ORIONKinda sucks because I like GPG as a studio.I wonder what there next project is?
    Saturday night spell check fail..."their" is what I meant.
  • falchard
    In other news, many people learn that Age of Empires Online does exist.
  • Ironslice
    I miss the days of Age of Empires, Age of Mythology, Flight Simulator and other great games that Microsoft stopped making. Thank God they're still making Halo, but I wish there was a PC version :/
  • PTNLemay
    I honestly didn't mind the free-to-play nature of it, what did bother me was that the game simply wouldn't run well even though I have a GTX 670, an Ivy Bridge i5-3507K, and a 128GB m4 SSD.

    Keep your extra content, the game has enough as is, but PLEASE fix the bugs. One shouldn't have to choose between terrible screen stutter and horrible mouse lag.
  • reprotected
    In other news, people need money to survive.
  • alidan
    A Bad DayThere's a fine line between F2P and P2W...Some games do it well, others, well, they don't last long.
    the line is this

    if you can get anything in game realistically (as in you don't spend months on that one thing) through hard work, than it isnt pay to win.

    if they allow you to buy a weapon instead of earning it, it still isn't pay to win. not everyone has time to play till level 50 or 100 (depending on the game) and than unlock the weapon, allowing more casual players to unlock weapons like that is great, especially if its planet side 2 style, where no gun is a upgrade, they are all just different flavors.

    if you can only get certain camo packs or colors through buying them, again its not pay to win.

    now, if you have to spend money to get the best guns, than you go pay to win
    if you lock out item types from people who dont pay, its pay to win.

    it gets annoying when i read about pay to win all the damn time and every time i read it its not a pay to win game its just cosmetic crap or a shortcut to better weapons.
  • abbadon_34
    I miss the days of Strategy games, turn based became real time, but it was still stratgic, and GPG did an amazing with Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance. I had to best interface and scaling EVER. God I wish they make a SC3 or FA2, like most games, you got us on the game play, just update the graphics.