Bottom line: Sadly, Evolve never managed to live up to its pre-release hype. Despite trying to inject new life into the game by making a free-to-play version back in 2016, its dedicated servers are shutting down in September, bringing an end to that experiment and several other game features. The retail version will live on, but it’s unlikely that many people will continue playing.
While it gained a ton of hype in the run-up to its release in February 2015, asymmetrical multiplayer FPS Evolve never managed to become the massive success many expected. Come September, the 4v1 monster hunting game will be put on life support when its dedicated servers are shut down, meaning several key features will disappear, including the free-to-play “Stage 2” version.
Evolve gained some positive reviews upon its release, but there were also plenty of negative ones. Despite having bags of potential and being initially quite popular, the lack of lasting appeal soon showed—the $136 worth of launch DLC didn’t help its cause, either.
In a post on its website, publisher 2K said Evolve’s dedicated servers would shut down on September 3 this year. The move means features such as Hunt (Ranked), leaderboards, and the in-game store will no longer be available on PC.
Back in July 2016, Developer Turtle Rock Studios tried to breathe new life into Evolve by launching a free-to-play version of the game called Stage 2. This will also be shutting down on September 3.
On July 2, virtual currency bundles will no longer be available in the in-game store, which is also being removed entirely in September. Players are advised to spend any in-game and virtual currency before the store closes.
Evolve isn’t being killed off completely; the retail version of the game, Legacy Evolve, will still be available minus some features. It includes peer-to-peer multiplayer and the party-up feature for Quick Play, Evacuation, and Custom games. There’s also the single player (solo vs AI) option. Any previously bought DLC content such as monsters, skins, and hunters will still be accessible through Legacy Evolve.
The move doesn’t come as a huge shock. Turtle Rock Studios said it would no longer be supporting the game back in October 2016, which meant an end to any updates, bug fixes, or new content. Since October last year, Evolve Stage 2 has averaged around 270 concurrent players on Steam. At its peak, the game boasted just over 51,000 concurrent gamers.