Have you ever purchased Deus Ex Go, the top-rated mobile puzzle game from Square Enix Montreal that costs real money to download but consistently ranks among the top 150 puzzle games on the App Store? When you learn that Embracer Group, the sizable corporation acquiring the rights to franchises like Deus Ex, Tomb Raider, The Lord of the Rings, and others, has decided you can no longer play it, you'll probably become frustrated.
Embracer has decided to remove its games from mobile app stores three weeks after closing the studio that created them (which, incidentally, had just undergone an expensive rebrand). However, it also seems to be going the extra step of making them inaccessible even if you have already downloaded them, or in the case of Deus Ex, even if you have paid $5 or $6 to do so.
The defunct Studio Onoma, which also announced the closure of three free-to-play games (Arena Battle Champions, Hitman Sniper: The Shadows, and Space Invaders: Hidden Heroes), tweeted that present gamers will not be able to play the games past January 4th. It is advised using earlier in-game purchases before January 4th because they won't be returned. When a downloadable game is taken down from a digital store, you can typically at least download a copy of it first; in certain circumstances, you can even re-download titles you've already paid for indefinitely.
Onoma was part of the acquisition that saw Embracer take control of Eidos and the Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, and Legacy of Kain franchises. The company informed staff at a 2pm ET meeting today that Onoma is shutting down as the company pivots to focus only on PC and console— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) November 1, 2022
That won't be the case, though, it seems. It's a tragedy for game preservation, as Luke Plunkett of Kotaku puts it. It also provides ready-made ammo for those who oppose digital purchases and Embracer Group, which is already under fire from gamers for its acquisition of franchises and a billion-dollar loan from Saudi Arabia.
And it's unclear why Deus Ex in particular is experiencing this. A rights issue shouldn't arise, right? Embracer and the mobile gaming studio that created Deus Ex specifically bought the rights to the game. All we know is that Embracer reportedly decided it was no longer interested in developing mobile games, according to games journalist Jason Schreier.