Shadowbane will be shutting down on May 1st.
I believe this is the first 'major' MMO that I've played that's shutting down.
We come to you now with regret and sadness, but also happiness and pride. Regret and sadness that it has finally come to this and as of May 1, 2009 the Shadowbane servers will be powered down once and for all. Yet happiness that it lasted so very long, and pride to be able to stand before such a passionate community to thank you for your undying support and unwavering loyalty to Shadowbane.
Memories of Ages past and present will always remain in the hearts of those who fought for land and title, power and greed, and above all, the sword known as Shadowbane. Tales of epic proportions will be remembered and told for years to come. Allow me to remember the tales past with you one final time.
The Children of Aerynth formed communities, better known as Guilds, to achieve their common goals. These very Guilds built cities beginning with an acorn harvested from the World Tree. The World Treeâ€™s acorns sprouted into stone trees, the Tree of Life, which served as the focal point to all cities within Aerynth. The Tree of Life was most important to these communities as they allowed for a sort of immortality to the spirits of the dead as they were linked to the Tree by powerful magic from which even the Wise couldnâ€™t explain. From these cities raised Empires and Alliances but also brought the strife of war. Many wars would erupt among rival Empires creating fear and chaos across the fragments. Empires sought out the power of the One Sword to either bring Order to the world or to let Chaos reign freely. Humans, Minotaurs, Irekei, Northmen, Dwarves, Centaur Lords, and many other races filled the ranks of these Empires on the battlefields known as Aerynth, Dalgoth, and Vorringia over the Ages. In the distance, you could hear the roars of the fired buildings as they crumbled and collapsed into ashes and rubble, the consistent rhythm of the drums of war as Empireâ€™s marched, and the sounds of gears and pulleys as Siege Engines fire upon resilient and towering walls as the many Empires engaged in battles across the continents vying for power and dominion. Alliances were formed to achieve common goals among various Nations only to be met with strife from within tearing the Alliance apart and pitting Nations against each other once again. Each war created new opportunity to rebuild old Empires once lost and rekindle old friendships or rivalries. New Ages began but the cycle remained the same. The search for the Sword known as Shadowbane continued on.
Epic sieges outside the city gates, Events giving the individual player or entire nations the choice to side with Order or Chaos, and politicking in the political arena to posture for an advantage using the power of the pen instead of the might of the sword are just the beginning of countless memories that we can remember and keep with us for years to come. Adventures through the many Ages have lasted over 6 years for some, while otherâ€™s adventures were still a new experience. No matter if you were a seasoned veteran or a fledgling still learning the ropes you poured yourselves into your quests to find Shadowbane. Unfortunately, the Sword has slipped into the Void never to be found again.
Many passionate and creative individuals have poured their hearts and souls into developing and hosting Shadowbane. We want to thank each and every one of you for your tremendous work and valiant efforts throughout Shadowbaneâ€™s lifetime.
Remember, Play to Crush!
This actually kind of near and dear to me, since I played Shadowbane for quite a while, both at launch and once it went free-to-play. It was fun for a while, until the crashing errors (sb.exe lawls), rapidly shifting flavor of the month class templates, bug abuses (hi Lords of Death with your nearly un-baneable Tree!), and overly punitive consequences for losing your city making it easier to simply quit rather than rebuild pretty much stopped its growth dead in its tracks about four months into it. It also didn't help that new players to the game, who would party up and go out of the newbie towns at level 20 or so to kill mobs to level, were the prime 'resource' max-level players 'harvested' in order to get gold to keep their cities functional, which pretty much led to those new players not staying past their initial month. The fact that a lot of former Wolfpack devs, including community dude Ashen Temper, are a major part of Star Wars: The Old Republic's dev team, makes me both kind of intrigued and kind of worried.
I guess I have mixed feelings about Shadowbane. There's little love lost between SB and I, but seeing something mostly unique like Shadowbane take the fall while absolute garbage like Horizons is still kicking around is kind of shameful.
- The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (2017, colorized)