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'Evolve' may devolve, as Turtle Rock Studios ends support for the game

Following the transition of its asymmetric multiplayer shooter Evolve to a free-to-play business model, developer Turtle Rock Studios has announced that it no longer plans to support the game.

In a post on the game’s official forums, Turtle Rock Studios co-founder Chris Ashton expressed his gratitude to the fans who continued to play Evolve a year and a half after its initial release, but said that its continued support was “not meant to be.”

Related: Multiplayer-shooter Evolve will be free to play on PC starting today

“We were hungry for more but unfortunately today is the last day that Turtle Rock Studios can work on Evolve,” Ashton said. “It’s always hard to leave one of our games behind. Left 4 Dead was no different and now it’s Evolve‘s turn. There will always be a special place in our hearts for our past projects.”

Community manager Shane Kali Meyer specified that the decision to stop support for the game was not Turtle Rock’s, but rather was made by publisher 2K Games. The publisher previously saved the project from death after the dissolution of original publisher THQ.

The language 2K uses on its own blog post regarding the subject is slightly more optimistic.

“Today, Turtle Rock finishes development on the project and has transitioned day-to-day server operation to 2K, as we take the operation of the Evolve franchise fully in-house,” the company says.

2K says that continuing to support the PC version of Evolve “Stage 2,” which moved the game from its original pay-up-front business model to a free-to-play model, is the company’s main focus. It does not, however, rule out the possibility of Stage 2 coming to consoles eventually. Servers will not be affected on either version of the game.

Evolve launched in early 2015 to a lukewarm reception, with praise given to its unique take on multiplayer but criticism directed at its lack of content and aggressive approach to microtransactions in what was, at the time, a full-price game. You can buy it now on Amazon for as little as $4.