Turtle Rock Studios drops support for Evolve

The bloodstained writing was on the wall as the game went free-to-play earlier this year.


Sad news from Turtle Rock Studios as they have announced on their official forum that they are dropping support for Evolve. This game was highly anticipated and hyped, but never delivered the numbers that Take Two Interactive had projected. The studio attempted to pump life into its struggling game earlier this year with the decision to go free-to-play, but it is no longer up to them. 2K will be handling all legacy support for Evolve and Turtle Rock Studios has to get back to the drawing board while continuing to support their new Gear VR titles. I am reminded of this quote from Steve Jobs that is on the wall outside of the auditorium at Apple Inc. Headquarters Building 4 on Infinite Loop in Cupertino.

Shacknews wishes the best to Turtle Rock Studios in figuring out what to do next. Here is their final message to the Evolve community:

Seems like the greater things you aspire to, the more time it takes. We had huge aspirations for Evolve, and while we got to spend five and a half awesome years on planet Shear with a ragtag group of Planet Tamers and fearsome Monsters, it still doesn’t feel like enough - we were hungry for more but unfortunately today is the last day that Turtle Rock Studios can work on Evolve.

It’s always hard to leave one of our games behind. Left4Dead was no different and now it’s Evolve’s turn. There will always be a special place in our hearts for our past projects. No matter what happens with Evolve in the future, we’ll know it was born in this studio and developed by this team alongside this beautiful community.

This is the life of AAA game developers who aren’t self-funded and don’t own their own IP. We don’t get to make the call. We all know that going in but we still sign the dotted line because we love what we do. We are happy to have gotten the opportunity to do something risky, something new and innovative. We created a brand new Sci-Fi world. We got to go to planet Shear and interact with alien flora and fauna. We got to hunt down, trap and kill giant monsters together. We got to BE the monster. What an awesome experience.

The last five and a half years represents so much. We are so proud of Evolve, the Turtle Rock team and the Evolve community. Getting on the forums, Reddit, Facebook and Twitch and talking directly to you has been a highlight of many of our careers. On no other project have we ever been able to interact so directly. The Evolve community is the best we could have hoped for and we hope you come with us and become a part of the Turtle Rock community.

We want to thank all the people at THQ who initially believed in us when we were that tiny studio in a little converted warehouse with a dream of making something truly different. Thanks to 2K for picking up the mantle out of THQ’s bankruptcy and making Evolve one of the most anticipated games of 2015. Additional big thanks to 2K for reaching outside their comfort zone and funding Evolve: Stage 2 by taking a AAA game free to play, which was a first for all of us.

Most of all, we want to thank you, our players, for supporting Evolve and Evolve: Stage 2, many of you from the very beginning. You embraced our vision and fell in love with it just as we did. We have learned so much from you. Thank you all for your feedback, your support and your dedication.

We love this community and don’t want to say goodbye via a letter on a website, so we’ll be hosting one final Evolve-themed Livestream on Thursday, October 27 at twitch.tv/evolvegame starting at 12 PM Pacific Time. We’ll be there talking about our experience on the project and answering as many of your questions as we can.

There’s a lot that we really wish we could have done, especially taking Stage 2 to consoles, but it looks like that’s just not meant to be.

Those of you who’ve followed Turtle Rock Studios, this is not goodbye. We have lots of stuff in the works that we hope you’ll enjoy but we are departing on the Laurie-Anne for the last time and must bid a farewell to the planet Shear.
We’ll see you all again, another time on another world….

So long, Shear. It’s been an adventure.

Phil & Chris

Here is a message from Shane K Meyer, their community manager, regarding the future of the Turtle Rock Studios forum:

Dear TRS Forums Community and TRS Devs,

It's been a crazy day!

We got a beautiful icy beast with awesome power and damn good looks! -- we also got the news of Evolve being transitioned into 2K's hands for further decision making.

I want to start by thanking each and every one of you for your support from the moment these forums were created -- to the Alpha of Evolve -- to now.

I came from the community and I couldn't be more proud of not only the relationships we've built, but the game we built together.

It's not everything we had dreamed of as our production was cut short -- but it definitely wouldn't have come as far as it has without you.

That being said. This is our forums. Turtle Rock Studios.

This is our community. This is our people.

I promise you no matter what choice you make: whether it is to leave or stay, you were always a part of something special -- and you are always welcome back.

I will not only continue running the forums as we have in the past, but new content will be showing up consistently as we are currently working on new projects!

Although we will no longer be able to offer patch information, process hack/bug information, or take Evolve suggestions, we will be here offering you a community, new projects, and full transparency.

We've built much more than a community, we've built a family. All Evolve discussion, shared stories, and created content are always welcome here. This also includes L4D and all the new projects we have in store for you.

Thank you again for making this part of my life the absolute best.

I love you all and I look forward to continuing the legacy of TRS with you.

Kindest regards,

Shane K Meyer

Evolve players must now go to 2K Support for any future issues with the game. 


Asif Khan is the Luminary and majority shareholder of Shacknews. He began his career in video game journalism as a freelancer in 2001 for Tendobox.com. Asif is a CPA and was formerly an investment adviser representative. After much success in his own personal investments, he retired from his day job in financial services and is currently focused on new private investments. His favorite PC game of all time is Duke Nukem 3D, and he is an unapologetic fan of most things Nintendo. Asif first frequented the Shack when it was sCary's Shugashack to find all things Quake. When he is not immersed in investments or gaming he is a purveyor of fine electronic music. Asif also has an irrational love of Cleveland sports.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    October 25, 2016 11:00 PM

    Asif Khan posted a new article, Turtle Rock Studios drops support for Evolve

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      October 25, 2016 11:19 PM

      Props to these for supporting the game for all this time and not giving up on it easily, i am definitely excited to see what they got for the future

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        October 26, 2016 12:36 AM

        Ditto. Can't have been easy to pitch 2K for more cash to try F2P, props to them for working hard to attempt a second shot at it and treating existing owners well when they did so. I look forward to their future stuff - Evolve wasn't to everyone's taste, but you can't deny that those guys have heart and drive.

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        October 26, 2016 12:46 AM

        As long as the publisher doesn't fuck them over again with a stupid season pass, and day1 dlc scheme, that is.

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        October 26, 2016 2:14 AM


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          October 26, 2016 2:17 AM

          You can't blame the publisher for that, it probably didn't gain the success needed after going F2P but it would be interesting if they ever share how better did it do after going F2P

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            October 26, 2016 3:44 AM

            Maybe it's just because I previously bought it and they looked after those people with bonuses, but the F2P model seemed insanely generous. I never had to even earn any coins to get everything except the pointless skins, and on the rare occasion that I did there was 10x Silver Key weekends so I earned enough to get a new character in just a few games. There's grindy, and then there's "why even pay".

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              October 26, 2016 5:44 AM

              Having followed Battleborn for a bit now, it is fairly clear to me that 2k has no idea what they are doing in the multiplayer space.

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                October 26, 2016 6:15 AM

                I still maintain that game was impossible to clearly market. It has such a fractured identity, being a miss mash of many genres, and no iconic character designs.

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                  October 26, 2016 6:20 AM

                  I would say there are iconic character designs, but they are hidden.

                  Toby for example. An adorable penguin who really wanted to go to war, but was too tiny and cute to be taken seriously so he built himself a mechanical suit. His class is a support sniper who sets up shields, lays mines, stuns, and charges up a plasma gun.

                  His talks like DozIR_


                  That's just one of them, there are many others equally interesting.

                  You are right that it is hard to market though. The game is an iceberg. But, they did a crap job hinting at that iceberg. Overwatch videos were a great tease and built up hype. The Battleborn animated into came as a surprise to most of us who were following it. The comic was neat, but not much for marketing.

                  They needed to get more of the game personality out in the marketing and then do a much better job transitioning players from FPS mindset to MOBA mindset in PVP. It is not natural and players who came in with the soldier class were smacked in the face when run forward, die, respawn never rewarded them for simply aiming better.

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                    October 26, 2016 6:53 AM

                    Mech penguin, mushroom monk, steroid man with small head, clockwork gent... I dunno, none of the designs just grabbed me at all somehow.

                    Otherwise fair points though! It's just a very hard game to elevator pitch.

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                      October 26, 2016 7:11 AM

                      No, they aren't massively original. They fit classes and archetypes, but I think they are cleverly done. It isn't like Overwatch has anything that is brilliantly different and yet people are somehow attached ot its characters.

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                        October 26, 2016 10:11 AM

                        I was thinking that about Blizzard. Their artwork just had that special undefinable something though.

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                      October 26, 2016 7:13 AM

                      I would also recommend looking at what they did with the first DLC. Which puts various characters in a film noir plot.


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          October 26, 2016 7:20 AM

          seems like might have been worth a shot at least to try to go with stage 2 into a F2P model, let them see if it made any money.

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      October 26, 2016 7:14 AM

      When did Evolve go free 2 play..? :P

      Was Evolve still the 4v1 Monster game? If so, it looked really cool, but felt like something that should be a game *MODE*, and not it's own game. Seemed like something you would have a ton of fun with for a few hours, but I could see it getting dull after a while.

      Can you play it over LAN? Retail or F2P?

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        October 26, 2016 8:21 AM

        1. Months ago. The game was switched up pretty significantly as well as part of the change, although IMO not for the better.

        2. Yes, still 4v1. They made finding the monster much easier when they went F2P and changed all of the hunter powers, but the basic asynchronous gameplay was still there. It always had a problem that one really good monster could still generally mop up if even one hunter didn't know what they were doing - going F2P really exasperated this.

        3. LAN - still requires server connection. My son really liked the game once it went F2P so we have been playing together frequently the last few months.

        4. There is no more retail release - the existing retail release was patched to the F2P game which as I mentioned before changed the game pretty significantly. It removed some of the game modes (including the cool campaign-like multiplayer mode that I wish more games copied) and changed up a lot of the hunter powers to try to appeal to the broader F2P base.

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          October 27, 2016 6:46 AM

          Thanks for the info. That's too bad. I always wanted to give it a go, but didn't know enough people that were interested in it, given that the 4v1 wasn't just an optional mode.

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      October 26, 2016 8:40 AM

      That's too bad. I liked the premise but it didn't fit well with the random grouping of internet strangers. The few times I got to group and coordinate with a full squad of friends it was extremly enjoyable.

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      October 26, 2016 8:46 AM

      One thing no one is really talking about was the esport angle they were pushing before release. I wish game journalism had more investigative reporters that could look into the impact of failed games like this.

      There are kids out there that tried to make this a career based on a promise from the publisher/devs. There has to be a story there.

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        October 26, 2016 8:56 AM

        esports is weird in that regard. How do we know what will catch on and actually become a popular game in esports? We don't really have anything to parallel that in regular sports, we don't have people coming out with a new version of baseball every few months that they're hoping will catch on.

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          October 26, 2016 9:01 AM

          Eh. It is still there.

          X-Games does it all the time. Suddenly there are "pros" in things like Mountain Bike Slope Style that only suddenly came into existence.

          Much like pro-gaming you get high skilled people who transfer into these new events and new groups of specialists who only do them. The big worry is money. If there is sponsorship, sure there can be "pros" in it.

          But, that doesn't mean it is actually a sustainable consumer sport. That's the weird extra thing about video games.

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          October 26, 2016 9:07 AM

          Yes exactly. Plus the age range of people making an important, and can be argued reckless, decision to go pro on these unproven games should be concerning.

          I'm sure publishers and the sponsors behind these don't want anyone asking questions.

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