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Least Surprising Cities XL Announcement Ever

January 27th, 2010 by Troy Goodfellow · 5 Comments · City Builder, Industry

Apparently there were not enough subscribers to the Cities XL Planet system, meaning that Monte Cristo has decided to drop it entirely. They will not accept any new subscriptions to this mulitplayer system that allowed players to visit each other’s cities and interact in a trading system.

From the announcement email:

Three months after the launch we have to admit that the subscription rate is lower than what we expected and therefore the Planet Offer is not sustainable. Not enough players decided to subscribe.

Therefore, it is with deep regret that we decided to put an end to the Planet Offer as of March 8th 2010. It will no longer be possible to subscribe to the game starting Monday February 1st 2010.
Nevertheless the Cities XL adventure goes on! Cities XL will evolve into a fully single player game. As soon as march the Bus will be added for free in the solo game. At the same time we also keep on working on new content and new features to keep on improving Cities XL.

The online stuff was what separated Cities XL from the rest of the city builders out there, but one of the prices for investing in this was that the city builder itself wasn’t very interesting. It’s a shame to see an innovative idea go down in flames, but there’s probably a lesson in here somewhere about doing two things only half well.


5 Comments so far ↓

  • James Allen

    The online components were never good, certainly not good enough for warrant a monthly fee. Basically you got a chat room and the ability to trade with real people, instead of with the AI. $10? No thanks.
    They should have just made the online part free to begin with; it think the prospect of a monthly fee turned off a lot of people, even if they were primarily interested in the single player aspect of the game.

  • Alan Au

    I suspect that there isn’t much overlap between online multiplayer fans and city-builder fans to begin with. Charging a hefty monthly fee certainly doesn’t help attract players either.

  • Punning Pundit

    I didn’t realize there was a non mmo component to this game. So, you know, Marketing Fail.

  • Cautiously Pessimistic

    I followed this game closely through its later development and release, but held off on purchase due to the (purposely) broken resource trading and traffic management. Assuming they follow through on making the online-only content available for single player and make single player resource trading feasible, I might pick this up later. As it is, they put a great deal of work into convincing me not to buy the initial release.

  • Jason Lefkowitz

    I tried the CitiesXL demo when it first came out and found it to be incredibly user-hostile. So much so that I pretty much gave up on the game before I ever even actually got to play it.

    So it doesn’t surprise me to hear that the multiplayer component was a big bag of fail too…