Shall we go on? Transformers Universe Episode

For many reasons, I don’t normally reveal the next episode, but this is kind of important.

Slated for the last episode of the year was going to be a Browser-Based with Optional Client Download title of “Transformers Universe” which I looked at previously in a sidequest episode. Since the game was constantly going under changes, I delayed looking at it as a full episode until it seemed like it would settle into a groove and build from there.

Note that when I gave my clue in the ZMR episode, I stated that the game I was looking at was starting to worry me. Yes, it was Transformers Universe and my reasons were as follows.
My first login to the game in a while was immediately met with someone asking me why I was logged in, and proclaiming the game as “dead”. I’ve see it before, though. A lot of times when a game is new, or makes a change, people get upset, and make a big stink about how they will never play again, offering up grand announcement forum posts as if their personal investment in the game was a load bearing beam in which the game solely rests upon. I’ve seen it happen in SMITE, FFS, and look where that game has headed.
However, when looking over the forums and announcements, I noticed that it had been a month since there was an update. That’s nothing major, as Funcom has gone months without posting news letters on occasion, but it was the fact that checking back the next month still had nothing. Also, the last thing that was posted announced that “something big was coming” (which ended up as a community meme of sorts) and that they would reveal that answer in two weeks from that post. That now three month old post.

And instead, this is the announcement we got today:

Yep. The game is being shut down on January 31st.

So my question is… should I still bother? The due date for the episode was the 29th, so I have PLENTY of time to find another one, but there was a lot of people looking forward to doing this as well. Knowing that the game will be completely gone in a month after the episode airs seems disheartening, and of course, renders the whole point of my show moot. It’s one thing to have a game suddenly announce it’s shutting down after I’ve made an episode on it. It’s a whole other thing when I KNOW the game is shutting down, and when, before I start to make an episode on it.

Let me know how you feel, as you’re the key audience here. Would you like to see a comprehensive guide on the game that you’ll only have a month to play, or should that time be spent looking at something less doomed?



Posted on December 16, 2014, in News and Updates and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. It’s definitely not worth looking at, however I am wondering if the people who bought Founder’s Packs get any sort of refund. Nothing would suck more than dropping $450 on a game that didn’t even make it out of beta…

  2. I wouldn’t bother. The game sounds like tosh to begin with, more so now that it’s been shut down. Not that it matters now that the poll has closed, but still – doesn’t sound terribly interesting. Pity another MMO had to go. Guess we’re still seeing the consequences of the MMO bubble bursting… Or rather deflating with a comedic farting noise.

  3. It looks like we lost out, but I figure if you were prepared to review a game, just go for it. Maybe rework it not as a review but as an “In Memoriam”?

  4. I love reading about evacuated towns, abandoned buildings, & forgotten consoles of the past, so covering the history of a dying MMO is right up my alley.

    • I wouldn’t do it like a NORMAL episode though; which is what I assume everyone who voted “no” was thinking. Covering a game that you KNOW is going to be gone in a month should entitle starting a whole new series.

  5. There’s a morbid curiosity to be had, possibly. Seeing a game that’s about to die, maybe changing up the episode format to compensate for it – give an idea of WHY it’s about to die? Imagine if this was Star Wars Galaxies, you knew it had, say, a month to go (or less) would there be people out there that wanted to know about the game, how it played, what went wrong (if anything) and why it was shutting down.

    You really and honestly could make a new series dedicated to dead or dying MMOs that instead of having a ‘pay or pass’ conclusion could have a ‘did it deserve better?’ sort of conclusion. Learning about past games, dead or about to die, has just as much merit as learning about current MMOs from an education standpoint. Think of it more as an educational series. There are many more possible directions you could take the idea of the show, so as not to stagnate, and to just have more to say. The recent post on the Myth of Rested XP is a great example of how the show can educate and inform beyond a sidequest or pay or play model to the show.

    Whatever you decide, I still look forward to the next episode.

    • I really like this suggestion. I would be very interested in a show that looks at and analyzes dieing or recently dead F2P games. You could even do it for games that you featured on the main series that die after your episode.

      I voted no on the poll though as, like Moppet, i don’t think the main series format fits this game since its impossible to play. A format change for this 1 episode would be fine if your not willing to start a new series on dead/dieing F2P games.

      • “recently dead”

        That caught me for a bit until I realized that it really would have to be more recent ones, unless there was some other way to experience/get footage from the long dead ones, or he’d actually played a dead one way back when. Star Wars Galaxies you could still find information on, it’s hit private servers and found its own sort of afterlife there. On the other extreme you have Asheron’s Call 2, long dead and if it’s had any attention or private servers beyond its death, I’ve never heard of it. It’d be especially hard to discuss or find video for.

        Obviously not free to play examples, just using them as examples of the problem.

    • Ooh, that’s a great idea…”why the game failed, what it could have done to stay afloat.”

  6. I say do it, as it might possibly find life on a private server. I don’t know much about the game or the community, but there’s always the possibility someone will want to host and that people will play it privately. If no private server is available, then your review will appeal to “game archeologists” and curiosity seekers. It might also bring in new viewers to the show. I think it also shows a level of dedication to your show and the genre by at least making the effort to document the game in your own words. I still show people your CoH review and tell them “see that game! i used to play that! It was a lot of fun and the community was great.”

  7. You did Rusty Hearts not long before it died and Global Agenda which is kinda dead, so why not TFU ? Plus I really think that game deserves to be remembered.

    • Rusty Hearts was reviewed ages before it died, Backtracked shortly before the announcement, and Global Agenda is at least still allowed to be played. T:U players can’t even make a new account now.

  8. It’s a shame, and I can’t say I’m too surprised by it. The few times I tried playing it, it took forever to find a match, and when I did I faced off against high level players. I had thought the balancing was all messed up, but the more I looked into it, it seemed the player count was low, It was a fun game though.

    That being said, it’s probably not worth it to review it. Not when new people can’t even join the game for the limited time.

  9. I can’t say I’m surprised by the news. The few times I tried to play it, it took forever to get anyone in a game, and when I did I faced off against high level players. I figured either balancing was messed up or there were few to none low level players. It’s a shame.

  10. If it were dying, I’d say it was worth a look – games can take eons to die. But since we know it’s actually a dead game walking, why waste your time, especially since anyone who doesn’t already have an account can no longer make one.

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