‘City of Heroes’ to Close Its Doors by 2013

NCsoft’s Super Hero massively multiplayer online role playing game (MMORPG) “City of Heroes“, along with its developer Paragon Studios, is to be shut down, it was announced on Friday.

In a statement on the City of Heroes website, Paragon Studios delivered the saddening news: “This morning we announced that Paragon Studios will be taking to the skies of City of Heroes for the last time,” said Community Manager Andy Belford.

“In a realignment of company focus and publishing support, NCsoft has made the decision to close Paragon Studios. Effective immediately, all development on City of Heroes will cease and we will begin preparations to sunset the world’s first, and best, Super Hero MMORPG before the end of the year.”

As part of this move, regular subscribers have had their billing cancelled. The studio is currently drawing plans for a timeline to allow the transition to go smoothly and allow players to bid the city and their characters farewell.

The post praised its team of creators and thanked its loyal fans in the City of Heroes gaming community. “The team here at Paragon deserves special praise for all that we have accomplished over the last 5+ years,” said Belford. “These developers are some of the most creative and talented people in the gaming industry.”

To the fans, Belford said: “Thank you. Thank you for your years of support. You’ve been with us every step of the way, sharing in our challenges, encouraging us to make City of Heroes better, more than everyone else thought it could be… join us in celebrating the legacy of an amazing partnership between the players and the development team.”

City of Heroes was developed by Cryptic Studios and released in 2004. It was bought up by Guild Wars publisher NCsoft in 2007 and staff were transitioned into Paragon Studios. It received a number of expansions and one sequel, ‘City of Villains‘, in 2005. It had shifted to a free-to-play subscription model last year, ‘City of Heroes: Freedom’.

With the recent release of NCsoft’s big MMORPG sequel Guild Wars 2, it is likely that it plans to focus its resources into supporting what they are hoping to be a ‘World of Warcraft’-beater. Around 80 employees have been made redundant by this move, according to some sources.

Reporter: Dean Simons

Sources: Paragon Studios, Games Industry International, MCV

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