Where to start…
Well back in March’07, a poster by the name of Boomstick (a disgruntled employee) posted on the official Shadow Run forums about the company closing its doors. According to Boomstick, the supporting reasons were due to:
- Substandard Management
- Bad Hiring Decisions
- High Turn Over Rate (Leaving of good employees)
- Shadow Run was a sub-par game and best to buy Halo 3.
- "Seeing management let bad things happen to good talented people"
FASA Management countered that Shadow Run would ship soon and that it was normal for people to leave after a title was finished.
So, skip to September and FASA has closed its doors. So what was true and what was not, do not know for certain. However, I would agree that bad management decisions were made. Here is what can be provided about FASA and Shadow Run:
Lesson One: Never Burn The Community
Shadow Run is a tabletop RPG, which has a large player base. So there was some confusion by the fans of Shadow Run as they were expecting a sort of RPG, not a shooter type of game. Additionally the game was for online use with no single player ability (except for training purposes).
Stick to the spirit of the IP (in this case, role-playing). The majority of players for Shadow Run are role-players, not action shooters. Basically going against everything that the player base wanted. Thus the community was burned… (Have we seen this before? Are you seeing this with other companies?)
Lesson Two: Limited Platforms
Limited Platforms; XBOX and
Do not agree to going with a specific Operating System (in terms of version, not of Windows, Linux or such); especially of the latest and greatest one. Only a small percentage of the user population will have the latest operating system.
Now what happens to the rest of the games FASA produced?
Well Microsoft has made an announcement of “No comment.” As for the future of FASA titles for the computer environment is questionable, perhaps the end; unless some company makes Microsoft an offer.
As for the Mech Warrior series… I’m guessing it is out of action. Microsoft did team up with Electronic Arts to produce BattleTech 3025, the MMO version back in 2001. However, the title was canceled, even during Beta Testing. I think the reason was due to legal issues between Microsoft and EA. Since that time, Microsoft and FASA released Mech Assault for the XBOX.
So I’m guessing that all of the FASA titles will be developed for the XBOX series, with any possible future chances of MMO’s out of the picture (unless it is exclusive for the XBOX).