Last chance to play.
On January 11, 2013, EA is going to "retire" a selection of its sports titles by shutting down their servers.
The games facing the digital axe:
- FIFA Soccer 11 for PC, PS3, Wii & Xbox 360
- FIFA Soccer 11 Ultimate Team for PS3 & Xbox 360
- Madden NFL 11 for PS3, Wii & Xbox 360
- Madden NFL 11 Ultimate Team for PS3 & Xbox 360
- NBA JAM for PS3 & Xbox 360
- NBA LIVE 10 for PS3 & Xbox 360
- NCAA Football 11 for PS3 & Xbox 360
- NHL 11 for PS3 & Xbox 360
- NHL 11 Ultimate Team for PS3 & Xbox 360
Trenches II (iOS) and The Sims 2 (PC/MAC) will also have their online services cut by the end of the month.
Being the classic nerdy sort who looks upon sport with the same level of disdain most reserve for black magic and/or necrophilia, I've never quite understood why people choose to buy into sports franchises on a yearly basis. Now it's starting to make sense; They're migrating. Like buffalo.
While EA states the players of these games constitute around 1% of customers (though given EA's massive consumer base, that's still a substantial number of players), it's still sobering to see online support cut from games that aren't even three years old. While server shutdowns may be par for the course now that dedicated servers have been relegated to a shrinking selection of PC titles, it does make you wonder about the longevity of modern games. Last month, some murky shenanigans over at GameSpy resulted in the shutdown of servers for dozens of PC games, including the likes of Neverwinter Nights 1 and 2, Star Wars: Battlefront and Sniper Elite.