While the rest of the world has little to worry about for the time being, Sony in Japan is offering further evidence of the finite lifespan of server based video games with a pretty monstrous example.
LittleBigPlanet will effectively shut down its servers in Japan on July 31, and that includes every single game in the series. The main releases on the consoles all the way down to the kart-racer. All DLC will still be available for download after the servers are gone, but no longer will anybody be able to browse the game looking for levels or share their own.
The game can still be played, of course, but what good is a “game creating” experience when you are unable to send your works off to be enjoyed by others? Without the online connection, players are stuck with a subpar platformer with a whole lot of levels.
Community Manager Steven Isbell has confirmed that there are no plans to take down the servers in other regions of the world. However, let this stand as a reminder that once a publisher sees popularity in an online game dwindling, it will cut connections to secure the bottom line. A handful of hardcore players and their sentimentality sadly don’t convert into the mighty dollar bill.
There will be a day that you can no longer share levels in LittleBigPlanet in the West, or indeed partake in a good number of your favorite online RPGs. This announcement is just a reminder to enjoy your time with your games, because nothing lasts forever anymore.
Man, I’m glad all my sentimental favorites were around before the internet became a thing.