In a somewhat terse announcement, Tencent Games and Aurora Studio have confirmed that their battle royale game, Ring of Elysium, will be officially terminated on December 1, 2023. The announcement outlines a termination schedule, which began on September 1, 2023, with the disabling of in-game purchases and removal of the game from Steam. Players will be able to enjoy the game and use any existing in-game items until the final termination date. The exact date and time may vary slightly by region.
Ring of Elysium had been struggling with a dwindling player base for quite some time. Despite its unique features, such as the ability to use a glider and a grappling hook, the game could not keep up with competitors like PUBG. Many attribute this decline to a lack of marketing support from Tencent Games, which led to a decrease in visibility and interest among potential players.
The game was not without its merits. Players who stuck around appreciated the game’s graphics, gameplay, and movement mechanics. The freedom provided by the game’s unique features like the glider and grappling hook offered a different experience from other battle royale games. However, these standout features were not enough to maintain a healthy player base, especially in highly competitive Battle Royale genre.
The Player Base: Real Players vs Bots
One of the most significant issues was the ratio of real players to bots. Depending on the server and time of day, this ratio was often around 50-50. This led to an underwhelming experience compared to playing on full servers of real players. Interestingly, the Asian servers were more populated with real players, but that wasn’t enough to save the game globally.
Could It Have Been Saved?
The game’s decline led many to question whether it was too late for Ring of Elysium. Some players and critics speculated that re-releasing the game or introducing a new structure could attract console players and potentially boost its popularity. However, with the official announcement of the game’s termination, it’s clear that Tencent and Aurora Games have decided to pull the plug.
Fans were complaining about the decisions of Tencent, such as removing certain maps and adding skins to the store that fit more into the world of Fortnite than Rings of Elysium. This was made with the intention to target exactly that audience, it seems, but it did not work to the expected extent. Going against Fortnite is like going against the King, and Tencent missed.
Additionally, cheating became rampant, and it seemed that the dev studio and the publisher stopped caring about that fact in the past couple of years. This seems to have driven the last nail into the coffin.
As of September 1. 2023. payments for in-game purchases have been disabled, and the game is no longer available for download on Steam. The servers will remain active until December 1. 2023. allowing players to enjoy the game one last time. After that, Ring of Elysium will join the list of games that had potential but ultimately couldn’t stand the test of time.
The cancellation of Ring of Elysium is a sad moment, but certainly not an unexpected one. It serves as a cautionary tale for game developers about the importance of maintaining a healthy player base, but also, it seems, as the cautionary tale of oversaturation in specific genres such as Battle Royale. Whether or not it paid of for Tencent to run the game and pull the plug once it became unprofitable, or if the game has been losing money throughout its life span is a question that will probably remain unanswered to us.