The Sniper Elite V2 Community Forum
has a post from Rebellion senior management on multiplayer support in the original Sniper Elite
, saying this was was switched off by Glu, the third-party now responsible for the shooter's GameSpy multiplayer support. As noted on Slashdot
, Glu acquired the GameSpy multiplayer technology from IGN in August of this year
(apologies for missing this then -- interestingly, this is not even yet reflected in the Wikipedia
), saying at the time: "There will be no disruption in service to GameSpy's current customers and contracts as a result of this acquisition by Glu." Rebellion says that after seven years they will no longer be able to provide multiplayer support, as they are locked in by the current economics of having used the GameSpy middleware:
"A few weeks ago, the online multiplayer servers for Sniper Elite were suddenly switched off by Glu, the third-party service we had been paying to maintain them.
For the past seven years we have run these servers at a cost to ourselves so that fans of Sniper Elite could continue to play online for free.
This decision by Glu was not taken in consultation with us and was beyond our control.
We have been talking to them since to try and get the servers turned back on. We have been informed that in order to do so would cost us tens of thousands of pounds a year - far in excess of how much we were paying previously. We also do not have the option to take the multiplayer to a different provider. Because the game relies on Glu and Gamespy’s middleware, the entire multiplayer aspect of the game would have to be redeveloped by us, again, at the cost of many tens of thousands of pounds.
While we are not happy about the situation, as an independent developer we simply do not have the resources to pay the massive costs of new servers along with redeveloping a seven-year-old game.
We share the disappointment of fans who have played the game since it was published in 2005. This is not something we intended or wanted to happen, but unfortunately it has been beyond our control. We have always looked to support our fan community and we hope the past seven years of free multiplayer service have been evidence of that - we're sorry that the servers have been shut down in this way.
We would like to thank all the fans who have continued to support Rebellion and Sniper Elite."