According to a new blog post
by developer Gas Powered Games, the online version of Age of Empires will be ceasing new content production, claiming that "creating top-tier content, as we have been for the last year and a half, is very expensive." While this isn't the best of news, the blog also outlines that the game is far from "dead" with a short amount of new content still in production to wrap things up, however general support, forums and everything else will continue.
Is AOEO dying? No. Nothing is changing for the existing game. You can still do all the things you do today; we’re not taking away anything you already have. There will be no new civilizations or features, that’s all.
Will I still get support for game problems? Yes. This does not change anything for community or customer support. We still have this forum, the digital manual, support tickets, etc. You are still a valued customer, and will be as long as you are playing the game. We aren’t going away.
What about bug fixes? Fixing any remaining bugs and addressing balance issues will be slower and, frankly, more difficult for the team. Some may, in fact, be unfixable. We will be watching carefully in case any critical bugs appear.
Why no more content? Because creating top-tier content, as we have been for the last year and a half, is very expensive—too expensive to maintain for long, as it turns out. We can no longer afford to keep creating it. AOEO already has a very large amount of high-quality, hand-crafted entertainment, and adding more is no longer cost-effective.
While new content has ceased for Age of Empires Online, Gas Powered Games has revealed a new countdown timer on their website, named Project W
. It isn't known whether this will be something tied to Age of Empires Online, or simply an entirely new project, but keep an eye out on AusGamers for the latest news.