GameSpy Technology, the Glu Mobile-owned service that provides multiplayer functionality for dozens of games on consoles, computers and mobile devices, will shut down as of May 31, according to the company's website.
"Effective May 31, 2014, GameSpy will cease providing all hosting services for all games still using GameSpy," the statement reads. "Thanks for a great ride!" The company had already stopped licensing out its services to publishers as of Jan. 1, 2013.
GameSpy Technology has existed in some form since 1997, when it debuted as a listing service for Quake server IP addresses. It is a separate entity from the gaming site GameSpy, which was shut down by its parent company, Ziff Davis, in February 2013.
The service offers features such as multiplayer matchmaking, leaderboards and cloud storage across platforms including Android, iOS, Nintendo DS, Mac, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Wii, Windows PC and Xbox 360. Glu Mobile, a publisher of mobile games, acquired GameSpy Technology from IGN Entertainment in August 2012. At the time, GameSpy Technology had been integrated into more than 1,000 games.
"thanks for a great ride!"
Titles from a wide variety of publishers, including 2K Games, Activision, Bethesda Softworks, Electronic Arts, Epic Games, Sega and Ubisoft, use GameSpy Technology for multiplayer services. An Activision representative told Polygon that the publisher's catalog will be unaffected by the shutdown. Epic has been "phasing out" GameSpy for its Unreal series of first-person shooters, said a spokesperson, adding, "We're spinning [up an in-house solution] next week and we don't foresee any impact."
In a post on the Bohemia Interactive forums this week, studio head Marek Spanel said that the end of GameSpy Technology will affect matchmaking, CD key authentication and NAT traversal in games "from Arma: Resistance to Arma 3."
Spanel added, "Other games (Take On Helicopters, Arma 2, Arma 2: Free, Arma, Arma: Cold War Assault) will have more limited multiplayer experience with loss of server browser, CD key [authentication] and NAT traversal systems. That said, direct IP connection to servers should work even after GameSpy services are no longer available."
We've reached out to Glu Mobile and all the companies involved to find out what will happen to GameSpy-based games after May 31, and what the publishers' plans are for those titles. We'll update this article with any responses we receive.
Update: "There are a few titles for which Capcom utilizes GameSpy's matchmaking services for online gameplay. We are evaluating migration solutions and will have more information in the near future," said a Capcom spokesperson in an email to Polygon.
Update 2: Iron Galaxy Studios CEO Dave Lang clarified to Polygon that Street Fighter 3: 3rd Strike Online Edition no longer runs on GameSpy. "We actually patched out GameSpy and replaced it with a homegrown solution a bit ago," said Lang in an email, explaining that the fighting game now uses the same network infrastructure as Darkstalkers Resurrection.