Turbine CEO Jeffrey Anderson notified players of Asheron's Call 2, the massively multiplayer online role-playing game that the game would be closing at the end of this year, a little more than three years after the game's launch.
In his note, he wrote: "In spite of our hard work and the launch of Legions, AC2 has reached the point where it no longer makes sense to continue the service. We will be officially closing the Asheron's Call 2 service on 12/30/05. Until then, we plan to run live events, but we will not be adding any content or features."
The game's cancellation came as a surprise to some fans, though the writing was on the wall after disastrous reviews of the Asheron's Call: Legions expansion pack released this May and subscriber numbers that peaked at just 50,000 after the game's November 2002 launch and slid to somewhere south of 20,000 in recent data provided by MMOGchart.com.
At some point this fate will befall every MMOG, though when these games close depends in large part on the infrastructure costs of the game. Meridian 59 and Ultima Online have been kicking around for years because the companies that run them don't spend a lot of money to keep them going.