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Thursday, December 7, 2023

Jane Austen’s MMO for socialites shuts down

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Ladies and gentlemen, it is with great remorse that I must announce that high-society MMORPG Ever, Jane sadly shut its doors for good this year.

Kickstarted back in 2013 for $100k, 3 Turn Productions’ digital facsimile of regency England was a curious twist on the genre—one that ditched swords and sorcery for an equally cut-throat world of gossip, mingling, and social ladder-climbing pulled from the works of Jane Austen. Following various closed and public betas, the developer hoped to see a full release in late 2020.

Unfortunately, it looks like the coffers ran dry for Ever, Jane. In August, 3 Turn explained that a rough year had forced it to postpone the game’s launch. Hopes to drum up subscriptions to cover the game’s monthly server costs didn’t pan out, and in December, the team announced that Ever, Jane would close the estate by the end of the year. 

Ever, Jane was never a pretty game, and I do reckon 3 Turn were perhaps a little out of their depth. But I have a great deal of respect for what the developer was gunning for with an entirely social-driven MMO. The game’s promise even shone through on occasion, with one player telling The Guardian about their scandalous alter-egos—from a travelling vicar to a gay barrister moonlighting as an opera singer.

“My characters have experienced sweet and tender poetic courtships, hot seductions, shame and subtle triumphs,” they wrote. “They’ve loved in secret, made calculating connections and stupid mistakes in the name of friendship.”

3 Turn’s final post ended with the hope that some rich benefactor might ride in to buy the game. But until that happens, Ever, Jane will remain as lost to history as the era it adored so much.

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