Seraph is a Producer from Montreal, Canada, who has been playing the original Million Live! social game with us since 2014. Here are his personal opinions and thoughts on Greemas’s impending closure. The opinion doesn’t represent HPT as a group, and in fact with such a major news as this, many of us have varying views on it.
With the recent announcement that the Gree Million Live! mobile game was going to terminate its services, I felt the whole thing deserved more words afforded to it than the half-dozen tweets I made on the day of the announcement itself.
I was a bit surprised at how hard I took the announcement that Greemas was going to shut down, although my grieving was not at the amount of money I’d spent on this game (which closes in on a respectable 4-digit figure [Canadian money…so like $50 US (joke)]) like a lot of people I’d seen on twitter. The hardest part was probably that I was losing something that had been an integral part of my daily life for the past three years or so. I know some people will scoff at the thought of getting emotionally attached to a mobage of all things, but to me Greemas was more than just a skinner box with pretty images. While it’s true that the spirit of Million Live still lives on as Theater Days, I feel I express the feelings of most ML producers when I admit that the rhythm game is not, and might never be, the fun, quirky and charming little game that was, for most of its life, the only way to experience my favorite part of the IDOLM@STER franchise.
In some ways Million Live has been the driving force behind my life for some time, as sad as that may sound. Waking up at 3AM to participate in IM@S Cup battles, arranging my life around a 3 hour timer to maximize eigyou candy gains… Honestly although I tried ignoring the signs that the game had been winding down for some time, you could feel that the game had started shifting towards a model that made players spend more. It was especially evident when they introduced hidden card skills and special idol skills, which both required a heavy investment of harder-to-acquire in-game items.
Saying all this, the announcement still shocked the community. After going to 4th live and Hotchpotch, it felt like new life was getting breathed into Million Live and I was excited to see if and how they were going to implement the two new idols introduced in Theater Days into the mobage. No real outward sign had warned us of ML’s impending doom; after all the old Cinderella Girls mobage has been cohabitating fine with its little sister Deresute. Who knows, maybe Bamco will pull the plug on that game soon too. I think what hurts more is that the announcement was made without fanfare or flourish; as you logged in you were redirected to the announcement page letting you know you had three months left to enjoy what was left to come.
I don’t know exactly what prompted the decision to shut down Greemas; decline in profits, stagnating player base, refocusing the development funds towards Milishita, all of the above? What I do know, however, is that twitter was showered with saddened messages from producers upon the announcement, and still is to some extent as I write this post. The distress was palpable. Danketsu is a word often used to describe how the imas community is united in feeling, and even though it’s usually meant to represent positive feelings, in this occasion the word was appropriate.
I’m still playing the game diligently as I was before the announcement dropped, but it feels hollow; like playing with your dog in the park one last time before it gets euthanized. I don’t know what that last event will be like before the game stops, but I’ll probably try to rank, as many likely will.
After that’s over I’ll still play and enjoy Theater Days, but I doubt it or any other mobage will ever replace completely what ML represented to me.
Million Live is dead, long live Million Live.