EDIT: Since this post still gets a lot of traffic, I thought I should direct people to the new HOTU. May they prosper.
All the notice we had was a February 9 Twitter from the proprietor.
“Home of the Underdogs webhost went bankrupt T_T.”
And with that sad note from Sarinee Achavanuntakul, one of the most enduring (if illegal) tributes to gaming history came to an end.
The site attracted a global community and, for a while, had a very active and knowledgeable forum. I used to spend a lot of time there. Other so-called “abandonware” sites are out there, so nothing has really been lost in a material sense, unless you include the site’s thorough cataloging by theme, publisher, genre, sub-genre, etc. For a while, HotU was a key part of my professional development, letting me fill in the gaps of my gaming history.
Sadly, the site hadn’t been updated in years. Achavanuntakul decided to put her Harvard degree to good use in championing noble causes in her native Thailand. Sustainable development, fair markets, small business, that sort of thing. So her long labor of love fell into disrepair, though the files were all there. Given her new interests, I don’t think it’s likely there will be any revival of HotU from Achavanuntakul.
So drink a toast to one of the finest intros to great, good and crappy games of the past. It was nice while it lasted.