What Twitch is doing feels like the opposite of charity.
The main studio for Maxis, and the developer behind Spore and the recent reboot of SimCity, has been shut down. Maxis Emeryville wasn’t exactly firing on all cylinders the past few years. Spore was a huge investment and seen as something unique and special from Maxis that never quite clicked with a large audience. And then there was SimCity 5. Combine a legendary video game franchise, lots and lots of marketing money, very poor design choices, online only gameplay with day one server issues, and it should come as no surprise that so many people were disappointed. With poor performance out of Sims 4 something had to be done with Maxis and unfortunately business comes before pedigree. According to EA the Maxis IP will be spread around to what is commonly known as “The Sims studio”, Maxis Redwood, and other EA satellite studios.
Personally seeing a studio that’s been around since 1987 that created so many wonderful games that I grew up playing is a big letdown. With so many great games like SimTower, SimFarm, Streets of SimCity, and SimCopter sitting on the shelf I have to wonder if we’ll see modern iterations of them any time soon. Maybe with the studio closure EA and whatever is left of Maxis will reexamine what they have and it’s potential. Or maybe we’ll see more mobile games.