We have some bad news to share concerning the Metal Gear series.
Or more specifically, its online-enabled spinoff.
Konami has regretfully announced that Metal Gear Online will come to an end in late June. The cyberspace-powered Metal Gear Solid experience – which held over 1.3 million subscribers at one point back in 2009 – will lose its online store on March 21 (step one), followed by new account creation by late April (step two). Then, on the exact three month mark from draw-down step one will come the final conclusion on June 21.
That being said, there’s also some good news coming out of this: anyone who has yet to experience any of the expansion material will have one last chance to do so until the very end – and on Konami’s dollar/yen ratio, no less. In other words, there will be no money down to get the additional content on top of the base experience from the step two pinpoint until the Metal Gear Online experience shuts down for good. It’s simply being provided entirely gratis, for the love of it all!
In addition to the final countdown, three very special “end of the game” events will be offered as the Metal Gear Online service period comes to a close. A MGO Eyes stealth action event will come on the first wave, with a full global online webcast that will be available for anyone interested in watching the action outside of the game. A second MGO Eyes event will also be available, featuring a survival action ethos in the vein of a typical Horde/Firefight mode experience (like in Gears of War or Halo). A third event will take place in selected Japanese-market venues (specifically in Osaka and Tokyo) as on-site tournament play takes the action onward into the grand finalé. Konami will be providing dates and times for the end-of-service events in the near future, so we’ll be sure to provide updates on these final events as soon as we have them.
As a reference point on the long history of Metal Gear Online, the service debuted almost five years ago, launching alongside Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots as a separate experience package within the Metal Gear universe back on July 17, 2008. Gamers who picked up the Metal Gear Solid 4 package got full access to the complete Metal Gear Online experience from day one as part of the game’s starter package content, and the game has been expanded with additional game modes and features such as Race Missions and the Patriots system, respectively. Gamers without a copy of Metal Gear Solid 4 also were eventually given the opportunity to pick up a copy of the game via Sony’s PlayStation Network (now little more than a mere portion of the larger Sony Entertainment Network) without having to pick up Metal Gear Solid 4 if they didn’t want or intend to have both games at once. Metal Gear Online featured a then-groundbreaking 16 player matchmaking capacity per session with fun and clever twists on classic deathmatch and capture-the-flag experiences.