Black Eye Games, the developer of the medieval MMO Gloria Victis, has announced that it will shut down the game and close its doors at the conclusion of the current season. The studio said the shutdown is "mostly due to financial reasons," but also that the effort of keeping the game running and growing has also left the team exhausted and burned out.
Gloria Victis only went into full release on Steam in January 2023—less than a year ago—but it spent six years in early access prior to that. Development began even earlier, in 2012, and while a Kickstarter that year failed to meet its goal, the team persisted and a pre-alpha version was released in 2013 through the gloriavictisgame.com website.
"Creating and maintaining an MMORPG is one of the hardest possible challenges in game development, and doing it as an indie team of around 15 developers makes it even harder, as the services need to work 24/7," the Gloria Victis team wrote on Steam. "But the awesome support of our Community and good souls from the Polish gamedev industry helped us overcome all the obstacles that we’ve encountered over all those years.
"But nothing can last forever, and after thinking it through for countless times, we have to make the toughest decision ever. Mostly due to financial reasons, as our game has always been a niche which we found extremely hard to expand without losing the game’s identity, and required more and more resources to progress and keep the pace, and due to continuous work without required rest for so long which eventually led to burnouts, we won't be able to provide required maintenance on the game much longer. And, sadly, for that reason the new season will be the last in Gloria Victis. We want to invite all of you for the Final Season which will end with the servers closure on 31st October 2023."
The scale of the infrastructure required to run Gloria Victis means that handing the game off to the community in order to continue operation isn't feasible, the studio said: "We studied all potential scenarios and sadly, it would be impossible to create a version that would not require excessive infrastructure to host player-made servers."
And, quite frankly, Gloria Victis doesn't have a huge number of players: According to Steam Charts, it had a peak concurrent player count of 4,175 just after going into full release, but that quickly tapered off to fewer than 700 over the past 30 days.
Gloria Victis isn't Black Eye's only game—it's also responsible for the confusingly-named Siege Survival: Gloria Victis, a brutal medieval survival game that looked quite promising in 2021, and Nadir: A Grimdark Deckbuilder, which has met with a more mixed reaction—but despite that, the studio confirmed that it will be closing alongside the Gloria Victis MMO.
"We will be doing everything in our power to support our team," the studio wrote. "We are now starting to reach out to our friends in the industry to find suitable new jobs for all Gloria Victis developers."