There's some unfortunate news out of Fairfax, Virginia today. Mythic Entertainment was closed by Electronic Arts. GameSpot suggests that the move appears to have been a sudden decision considering that new job listings having been posted within the last few weeks. However, CIC readers may have seen the writing on the wall. Their flagship Warhammer Online MMO was shut down six months ago, and the Dungeon Keeper game they released this past spring got scathing reviews due to its tedious free-to-play model. Perhaps most telling, its relatively steady revenue drivers Ultima Online and Dark Age of Camelot were recently shifted to a 3rd party developer as well.
If you're a recent follower of our site, you might not be familiar with how Mythic has been the carrier of Origin's torch for some time. After OSI in Austin was shut down in February 2004, much of their old material was temporarily held in California and then found a home in Mythic's storage closets. Due to their success with DAoC, Mythic was also tasked with continued operation of Origin's longest running game, Ultima Online. They even set up a classy dedication page that commemorated all the worlds that Origin created. In 2008, the CIC Staff got the lucky privilege of visiting their studio building to carefully archive and document their stored Origin materials, some of which we've been cleared to release. You can also check out our fun photos of the archiving trip here.
In recent times, there was a glimmer of hope that attention might shift back towards the Wing Commander series. Their studio lobby was redecorated with Wing Commander memorabilia and Mythic's Paul Barnett helped push into Origin's past, which resulted in the release of Ultima Forever. Alas, the next Wing Commander game will come from a different direction. Our sympathies go out to all the displaced employees. Thank you for helping protect Origin's legacy for the past decade!