It wasn't entirely unexpected -- after all, Jeff Skalski gave some indications this might be coming in our recent interview with him -- but it's still unbalancing. Warhammer Online community manager Andy Belford confirmed today that two of the game's servers, Dark Crag and Phoenix Throne, will be shutting down. The population of these servers will be allowed a free transfer to two other servers each -- Iron Rock or Badlands for Dark Crag, Gorfang or Volkmar for Phoenix Throne. He also mentions that there will be a 20% bonus to experience and renown in the weeks following the transfer, to at least slightly take the sting off the event.
It looks as if there will be slightly more servers in the European region, as they have a total of 13 still open... but several of those are due to the different languages, and at least one of the realms is scheduled for shutdown. As for what this means for the game itself... it's hard to call it anything but bad news, even with the promises of a boost incoming to ease the impact. We know that Warhammer Online's future looks a bit shaky after recent events, but this is more dire than any of us had expected or hoped. We'll keep up on any news as it becomes available.
[ Thanks to JP for the tip. ]