I Feel A Disturbance In The Force, As If Several Servers Cried Out In Terror, And Then Were Silenced

SOE to close Star Wars Galaxies in December.

On December 15, 2011, Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) and LucasArts will end all services (MMO and Trading Card Game) for Star Wars Galaxies (SWG). The shutdown of SWG is a very difficult decision, but SOE and LucasArts have mutually agreed that the end of 2011 is the appropriate time to end the game.

The launch of a different Star Wars-related MMO by a competitor in late 2011 is, no doubt, a coincidence.

Massively has more from John Smedley on SWG’s closure.

The decision to shut down SWG is first and foremost a business decision mutually agreed upon between SOE and LucasArts. LucasArts has a new game coming out, and the contract would be running out in 2012 anyway, so we feel like it’s the right time for the game to end.

SOE has taken flak for various problems in the game’s past — do you think the company will take a reputation hit for this decision, and are you prepared for that?

There’s really nothing we can do about it. We’ve taken some hard-knocks for SWG in years past with the NGE. We’ve apologized for it. It was a mistake, and not one we’re going to make as a company ever again. But we’re really proud of the great work that we’ve done over the years since then. I’m really proud of the game. It’s great. Is it going to bum people out that it’s over? Yes. Including us. Maybe even especially us.

How is the staff taking it?

Well, nobody’s losing his job or anything. They’re going to be transferred onto an undisclosed new project in Austin.

For now, I leave you with the best of SWG:


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  1. You know the escalating explosions of wrath from EVE players  at CCP over the past 3 days is probably more pertinent. Its definitely more drama.

  2. “Populations have stayed pretty steady for a long time now. In fact, we
    recently merged a bunch of servers to help the prime-time population.”

    I have to admire Smed’s ability to say things like this with only the slightest of pauses between contradictory statements.

  3. SWG was the first MMO I ever played. I made an Ithorian something-or-other, shot some rats, tried to make sense of the marketplace, then uninstalled the demo. But I’ll never forget my day running around as a space monster in the desert.

  4. Wasn’t a bag game pre-NGE. It was a typical Koster sandbox MMO, but there was a lot of fun to be had. Awesome crafting ideas. I am not sure I understand why it couldn’t coexist with SWTOR, because they have different timelines and they are vastly different experiences. I can’t see how the hundred thousand or so that still played SWG would effect the sales for SWTOR. Maybe they were worried what few are left in SWG would defect en masse. 
    It’s interesting how they keep apologizing for the NGE, when anyone with half a brain should have seen the consequences of such an action long before any serious planning took place. I’m surprised old Smed still has a job, lol

  5. “There’s really nothing we can do about it. We’ve taken some hard-knocks for SWG in years past with the NGE. We’ve apologized for it. It was a mistake, and not one we’re going to make as a company ever again.”

    I think it’s funny he’s defensive all the way to the bitter end about it.  Is it really an apology when you refuse to make amends?  I mean, saying “sorry I bashed in your windshield” and then refusing to pay for it isn’t really, in my book, an apology.

  6. It was a nice sandbox game until NGE. That was really a blunder of such a degree they’ll still mention it in online gaming in the year 2080 as an example of utter folly. I logged in after it, gave it a week and then bailed. Just couldn’t take it. Like they had taken a hammer to my camero, it was personal what they did to my character.

  7. The thing that I always wondered about is:  if they knew the NGE was a mistake, and they were sincerely apologizing for it ever since, then why didn’t they ever undo it?

    At the very least, why didn’t they ever offer some “classic rules” servers?  Is it a licensing issue, where they’d have to pay twice as much, or did Lucas Arts just say “No” or what?  Did they accidentally delete all the old code?  I’d love to know WHY they never attempted to restore the game to the version that was borderline great (once you got past all the bugs, and the lack of content).

  8. Hard to even work up any sort of interest in this. SW:G is so old news and passe; how the mighty has fallen. Nerd rage is not the greatest killer of MMOGs, indifference is.

  9. I’ve played MMO games starting with MUDS, I hold a special place in my heart for the original incarnation of SWG, even before mounts and vehicles.  To me, it’s always the best MMO I have ever played.  Had they balanced the end result of crafting against the materials, it would have been more balanced in the beginning.  I loved the PvE factional rewards leading to PvP raids, we crashed Scylla regularly with massive PvP.