NCsoft is closing Paragon Studios due to a "realignment of company focus and publishing support," according to a blurb just posted on the City of Heroes website.
Community manager Andy Belford says that the superhero MMO will shut down before the end of the year, and recurring billing (as well as Paragon Market purchasing) will be discontinued immediately.
City of Heroes originally launched in 2004 as the world's first superhero MMORPG. Belford goes on to say that more information will be forthcoming over the next few weeks, including a firm cessation date as well as "what you can expect in game."
[Update: NCsoft has told IGN that it is aiming for a November 30th closure date.]