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Tabula Rasa to shut down in late February 2009

It's been rumored to happen for many months now and today the official Tabula Rasa web site made it official. NCsoft's sci-fi MMO, launched just over a year ago, will shut down for good after Feb. 28, 2009. The game's creative team was led by Richard Garriott, the legendary creator of the Ultima PC RPG game series which cultimated in the first successful MMO Ultima Online.

However, despite years in development, Tabula Rasa did not achieve the subscription numbers that were first predicted. Garriott himself just left NCsoft a few days ago following his much hyped trip to the International Space Station. Current subscribers to the game before today's announcement will receive some compensation including three free months of access to two other NCsoft games, City of Heroes and Lineage II. They will also get beta access to NCsoft's next MMO Aion and one free month of access to the game after its official launch. In addition, Tabula Rasa will be free to play for anyone after Jan. 10 until its shutdown.

This is the second Western made MMO that NCsoft has published that has since shut down. It's car combat MMO AutoAssault, developed by Netdevil, was shut down in August 2007 after less than 18 months of officially launching.

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