The upcoming Command & Conquer game is upcoming no more, as developer Victory Studios has announced in a blog post on the C&C website that they are ceasing development and refunding all money players spent on the alpha test. Furthermore, publisher EA is shutting Victory Studios down.
The reason for the game’s cancellation is surprisingly simple. To quote the blog post, “Your feedback from the alpha trial is clear: We are not making the game you want to play.”
This iteration of Command & Conquer was designed as a free-to-play game that would make its money from micro-transactions, which rubbed some fans the wrong way. Their argument was that EA or Victory could abuse this sales model to sell new, unbalanced characters to players who wanted to shell out cash for better odds at winning. If other players wanted to compete on an even playing field, they would have to spend money too. Whether that would have actually happened or not, it’s clear from the blog post that a free-to-play Command & Conquer wasn’t resonating with people.
While it is definitely sad to see Victory Studios close, they canned their game for good reasons. They could have soldiered on and released a game C&C fans would hate just to cash in on the franchise, but they didn’t. It’s rare to see a studio admit while testing a game that it’s just not working and players aren’t going to like it, and it’s a move that should probably happen more often in the video game industry.