Square Enix shuts down worst PS5 game of the year

The characters of Babylon's Fall await the destruction of the world at the end of the fourth fiscal quarter.

Image: Square Enix / Platinum Games

Today, publisher Square Enix and developer Platinum Games finally did what everyone predicted all along: they announced The fall of Babylon will close in its first year. Even though I’m hardly surprised, it still sucks. People paid $60 for this game just six months ago, and in less than six months it will completely stop working, despite previous promises to the contrary.

The fall of Babylona frenzied dungeon crawler with European oil painting art style, was terrible in many ways, but also had a few bright spots and an occasional fan. Despite being one of the worst games of 2022, some people bought it and were still enjoying its baroque late-game loot hunt. They will have until the end of February 2023 to continue. A new post on the The fall of Babylon website Tuesday revealed that’s when Square Enix will shut down the servers for the still-live action RPG. While co-op dungeon racing was the core of the game, the single-player mode will still close with it.

“[I]It is with deep regret that we inform you that we will be ending service to the game on February 27, 2023,” the team behind wrote. “In order to express our gratitude to all our players, we plan to implement as many events and other initiatives as possible, until the end of the service.”

The fall of Babylon will immediately stop selling its paid game currency and all large-scale game updates have been canceled. Season two will continue until the end of November, but instead of being followed by season three, players will once again earn the rank rewards from season two.

“After the service ends on Monday, February 27, 2023 at 11:00 PM (PT), you will no longer be able to play the game,” the announcement confirms. “All game data on game servers will be deleted upon termination of service.”

Screenshots show the changing fortunes of Babylon's Fall just six months apart.

Life comes to you fast.
Screenshot: Square Enix / Kotaku

Despite the bombardments at launch, The fall of BabylonThe developers of were quick to reassure existing players that nothing about the game’s frosty reception and dwindling player count would derail their future plans for live play. “No, there are no plans to reduce the scale of development on The fall of Babylon“, they or they announced shortly after release.

A few months later, in May, that message changed. The game’s developers were now going to “reevaluate” future content plans, likely in light of the fact that The fall of Babylon averaged less than a dozen players at any given time on Steam. It felt like an ambitious attempt to revise fundamental aspects of the game that probably weren’t in the cards. Maybe there would be no more big cross-content updates like the one with Nier Automata That is. But simply keeping the lights on for the few dedicated PC and console gamers seemed the least Square Enix could do. Apparently not.

Read more: 12 games killed in 2021 that prove preservation is vital

The whole debacle reminds Anthem, another ill-fated attempt by an otherwise excellent studio to try to capture a slice of the booming games-as-a-service market. BioWare’s Ironman-inspired loot shooter was, at least on many fundamentals, a much better game than The fall of Babylon, but it still fell off a cliff when it came to delivering the full experience, let alone expanding it significantly in the weeks and months after launch. Initially, BioWare also seemed to be in it for the long haul, but EA later canceled those plans. Contrary to The fall of BabylonNevertheless, AnthemThe servers are still operational years later.

“The ‘always online’ requirement prevents me from purchasing this game,” wrote one user on the The fall of Babylon Steam talk page back in April. “The servers will inevitably shut down one day, leaving a very expensive game unplayable. If it had an offline mode, I probably would have bought it by now. The player count is really low, the servers won’t last more than a year It’s one thing to close a free game, but something that costs more than $60 – there should always be a way to play it offline.

Meanwhile, The fall of Babylon still sells on PlayStation and Xbox stores for that exact price.


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