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First Person Shooters (Games) Microsoft XBox (Games) Games

Halo 2 Online Preservation Effort Ends 201

A couple weeks ago, we discussed news that some dedicated Halo 2 fans were keeping the game's multiplayer alive after support for online play was dropped. Now, a few days shy of a month after support ended, the last users have been knocked off the server. "[A user named] Apache N4SIR outlasted everyone. 'May 11th @ 0158hrs I was FORCEFULLY REMOVED!!' he wrote on the forums at 'I thought I'd be the one turning off the lights but that was done for me. Good night everyone, my Elite needs a rest.' His last comrade in arms, Agent Windex, was still signed on, as spotted by Kotaku at 4 p.m. US Pacific Time on May 10, but their adventure, which began on April 15, ended after Windex announced 21 minutes later that he had been removed from play and Apache N4SIR suffered a similar fate hours later, as he described in his post."
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Halo 2 Online Preservation Effort Ends

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  • and... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @12:51AM (#32179020)

    And nothing of value was lost.

  • Meanwhile on the PC (Score:5, Informative)

    by Shadow of Eternity ( 795165 ) on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @12:52AM (#32179026)

    People are still playing everything from Quake's Team Fortress to Tribes 2, with their own dedicated servers and authentication systems.

    • by ani23 ( 899493 ) on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @12:57AM (#32179052)
      Counterstrike. I seriously doubt it will decommision in my lifetime
      • by OrwellianLurker ( 1739950 ) on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @01:09AM (#32179120)

        Counterstrike. I seriously doubt it will decommision in my lifetime

        It's the Pacman of FPS.

        • That would be Unreal Tournament Classic. Oh and Duke nukem/Quake3. Those 3.
          • People are still having Duke Matches?

            • Oh yeah, there's some very breath taking rewrites of the engine "eduke" or something, im not an expert but also a while back some people made a 3d glasses mod for Quake3 and a ton of other engine upgrades.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @01:48AM (#32179324)
        This is because of the way Valve thinks about CS. It started out as a third-party mod, and Valve was all "wow, the fans are having way more fun with this mod than they are with the main game - we should find a way to get in on this action!" So they adopted it, and the rest is history. At one point it actually accounted for more internet traffic than the nation of Italy (admittedly, before broadband penetration was quite so high, and in no small part because of sloppy network algorithms). Given the thinking behind why Valve picked up Counterstrike as an official product, I would be absolutely dumbstruck if they don't keep milking it for as long as the fans are interested in it.

        In related news: the lack of LAN play in Starcraft II means that it is going to horizon eventually, while Starcraft will always be around. Go figure.

        But seriously, game producers - an established fan base is extremely valuable even if they've already paid for the game. If you can't figure out how to sell them something else on the basis of their existing fandom, you need a new job. If you can't figure out that it's good marketing to find a way to continue supporting a game that still has fans and would rather spend the money on another television commercial, you need a new job.
        • by b0lt ( 729408 )
 has been around for forever too (longer than Counter-Strike), and you can still play Diablo I through it. Blizzard is probably the only game developer that has less chance of dying than Valve, so isn't going anywhere.
        • by ukyoCE ( 106879 )

          As b0lt said, has been around and supported for Diablo1 much longer than it took Microsoft to shut down Halo. Blizzard, like Valve, is a company that has earned a lot of trust with gamers, and has always had the money to do The Right Thing.

          Having merged with Activision may thrown a big ugly wrench into the works though.

      • If you think that's crazy, Counter-Strike: Source currently has a new update in Beta []... to upgrade it to the Orange Box (Team Fortress 2) engine, as well as incorporate some other miscellaneous changes from their newer games (updated Scoreboard, etc...).

        Unfortunately, going by the server mailing list, CS:S will no longer work on machines without SSE2 support. This includes server machines.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Sowelu ( 713889 )
      For some reason I thought Halo 2 still had online multiplayer--just not through the actual old hub servers anymore. You have to set it up yourself. Just like Quake.
      • there is, there are multiple VPN-alike solutions for 'emulating' xbox live through system link.

        This way even halo 1 was played online before xbox live existed..

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Rewind ( 138843 )
      That is somewhat misleading. Isn't the original Tribes down? WON went down along with all the original games that were on it (though you can migrate to Steam). Heck EA shuts down PC things left and right. You are making this sound console specific when in reality it is just more obvious on consoles.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        That is somewhat misleading. Isn't the original Tribes down?

        Yes, but you can host your own masterserver, and the game lets you switch between them; even without masterservers, you can connect directly to known server IP addresses. Neither of these is possible with console games.

      • So was Tribes 2, but again people are still playing "with their own dedicated servers and authentication systems". I don't see how stating a fact about what people are indeed doing at this very moment is misleading.

    • Welp, I think this is just one of those things thats gotten me to realize I need to avoid contributing to the consoles completely.

      I refuse to buy another sony product for multiple reasons, the most important to this discussion is the fact that I went through 3 of them in a year or so, but you all know of the plethora of reasons Sony needs to die.

      I understand not wanting to maintain the servers forever, but not giving anyway for people to continue on is unacceptable, just like DRM that requires a server.


    • Some of us are still playing Doom 2 multiplayer without dedicated servers.

    • Exactly. One of the reasons I will never ever quit PC gaming for some "console" in any form, shape or color.

      Tell me again, Mr. Big Console Manufacturer, why should I ever bother to buy your products...

    • And 3 times more money was made last year on console game sales than PC game sales. So which do you think the developers are going to favor?
    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      People are still playing everything from Quake's Team Fortress to Tribes 2, with their own dedicated servers and authentication systems.

      The problem is Xbox Live's architecture was hobbled by one game. It's not a server issue, it's just that the overwhelming popularity of Halo 2 on Xbox was keeping Microsoft from being able to make more significant changes to Xbox Live because of compatibility reasons. Now, Microsoft was being kind in tolerating it that long (I think Halo 2 really only accounted for about 10

  • I wonder how long it will be before the FTC or some attorney general forces the industry to label all games with online content with bold warnings of when support for online play will end.

    • Re:hmmmm (Score:4, Informative)

      by Amarantine ( 1100187 ) on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @01:19AM (#32179176)
      Actually, i know that EA's games carry such a warning on the back (altough in very small print). Especially on their sports games. It reads something along the lines of "EA may retire online features after 30 days notice posted on or 30 days after the last day of the 2008-2009 NFL season."
  • by masterwit ( 1800118 ) * on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @01:38AM (#32179282) Journal

    What I really expected was:

    "Halo 2 preservation ends", six die in a fire believed to be caused by their game consoles.

  • by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @04:14AM (#32180014) Homepage Journal
    i mean, for all its faults, you can still play diablo 1 online without any issues with blizzard. yet, halo, itself a very popular game today, got its multiplayer support dropped.
    • I thought we all recognized this when they shut down the Zone. At least with DirectPlay games, you can run your own matchmaking service if you want. God help us when they shut down Games For Windows Live and 6 or 7 years of console ports die. I never buy a game now unless it runs on the standard QuakeWorld model - CD key auth, master server, dedicated user-run servers.
    • This is more or less an issue with Consoles in general than it is Microsoft. The idea is that all the server and hosting architecture is much more accessible on a PC. You can choose to set up your own server and have people find you just by IP Address alone, this basic functionality has been built into most PC games since 1996. However, with consoles, everything is built to go through their online system. You can't simply choose to host a game and give people your address. You must set up a game, have it br

  • Sad to hear.... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by __aamkky7574 ( 654183 ) on Wednesday May 12, 2010 @09:57AM (#32181806)

    I'm not a Halo fan myself at all, but it does seem rather sad that someone's favourite online game can be suddenly taken away like this. When you're almost 40, 6 years really isn't such a long time, and currently I'm replaying Deus Ex which is, gasp, 10 years old. And you have even more extreme versions; for example, Mercenaries 2's multiplayer being turned off after only 1.5 years. Whether it's for reasons of costs, or do force players to purchase the latest games, is open for debate.

    One of the benefits of PC gaming is that old games are readily available and indeed are revamped (either by unofficial graphical enhancement mods or by companies such as re-released old games but compatible with modern GUIs).


    • by lwsimon ( 724555 )
      I'm 26, and I tend to prefer older games. I'm currently hooked on Transport Tycoon (well, OpenTTD) and Insurgency, which is a mod for Half-Life 2. I anticipate playing both of these for another 10 years, easy, provided there is still someone to play Insurgency with.

This process can check if this value is zero, and if it is, it does something child-like. -- Forbes Burkowski, CS 454, University of Washington