Stop Killing Games is a new campaign to stop developers making games unplayable

We’ve all been there right? You paid for a game, it required an active internet connection and a couple of years later the publisher decided they’re done with it and shut it down leaving you with a broken game. Annoying.

Very annoying. It repeatedly happens, mostly AAA publishers that do it and their games are often quite expensive too. One of the most recent is The Crew from Ubisoft, a game that until late December last year cost £25.99. The developers at Ubisoft Ivory Tower announced on December 14th that as of March 31st, 2024 the servers would be shut down and so it will no longer be playable for anyone. The Crew 2 is still online, and Ubisoft are about to launch The Crew Motorfest on Steam on April 18th.

So now YouTuber Ross Scott of Accursed Farms, has launched the Stop Killing Games campaign to try and better highlight the issue. As noted on the campaign website: “An increasing number of videogames are sold as goods, but designed to be completely unplayable for everyone as soon as support ends. The legality of this practice is untested worldwide, and many governments do not have clear laws regarding these actions. It is our goal to have authorities examine this behavior and hopefully end it, as it is an assault on both consumer rights and preservation of media. We are pursuing this in two ways:”

It’s definitely an interesting and often frustrating issue, especially for games that could seemingly continue to let you play offline without too much trouble. It’s a complicated issue though, and the campaign might not end up going anywhere, but it’s certainly going to be interesting to watch.

Unquestionably a campaign I can get behind though, because I’ve said for years it’s a really poor situation for consumers to have your purchase suddenly stop working forever that you’ve not just put money into but often a ton of your time. It’s a question of preservation too, the games are just — gone. I miss the days where you could just host your own server.

What are your thoughts?

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