Warhammer Online shutting down

Mythic's Age of Reckoning MMO closing after five years of operation following end of contract between EA and Games Workshop.

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Massively multiplayer online game Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is shutting down after five years of operation, Mythic producer Carrie Gouskos announced today on the game's website.

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"Games Workshop has cultivated a world class IP. We were lucky enough to play in their universe for nearly a decade, with five great long years live. However, like all things--our contract has come to an end," Gouskos said.

"Both Games Workshop and Mythic agreed to part ways, despite how hard it is emotionally on us to let the game go," she added. "It has been a tremendous honor to work with Games Workshop and even though we may be parting ways, our relationship with them remains strong."

The game will be officially closed on December 18. Mythic will no longer be selling three-month game codes and players won't have the ability to auto-renew their accounts going forward.

Having received solid reviews following its September 2008 launch, Warhammer Online initially appeared to be on a World of Warcraft-challenging trajectory. Three weeks after launch, the game peaked at 750,000 registered users, but that figure had dwindled to just 300,000 by February 2009.

In March 2009, Mythic announced that it would be taking 63 of the game's servers offline in an effort to consolidate the evaporating player base. Mythic was also reportedly heavily affected by Electronic Arts' substantial headcount reduction enacted at the end of 2009. According to unconfirmed reports, more than one-third of the studio was laid off as part of EA's 1,500-job culling.

Warhammer Online may be closing down, but multiple new Warhammer titles are in development.

Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is coming to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 and is the third new Warhammer game to be announced since March, following a new smartphone and tablet game from the studio behind Family Guy Online, the turn-based strategy game from Slitherine, and multiple titles from Creative Assembly.

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