Rand Miller, creator of the huge selling Myst games, couldn't raise any money to fund new game development so has been forced to close down the studio. It's sad news - when I interviewed Rand not long ago, he spoke of ideas he hoped would redefine what it meant to play narrative based games. It seems no-one was quite as enthusiastic about his dreams as he was. Let's hope he finds a new home to express his ideas.
We contacted Ubisoft about the future of Myst V: End of Ages and they gave us the following statement:
"For the past 4 years Ubisoft has been proud to work with Cyan Worlds on the Myst brand, and we are saddened by the decision to close the doors of their games production unit. While this event is a sad day for Myst fans and gamers everywhere, it does not in any way affect the upcoming launch of Myst V: End of Ages which is already in manufacturing at this time. Ubisoft is continuing full steam ahead with the launch of Myst V: End of Ages, the Grand Finale of the Greatest Adventure Game of all time.
While the production unit has been disbanded, Cyan will continue as a company, pursuing new endeavours for the future. In the next few weeks, Cyan is expecting to provide more information about their plans. Other than this, Ubisoft has no additional information about Cyan or their future plans."
Some hardcore gamers have derided the Myst series over the years, but the franchise has been home to some of the best storytelling and character development in gaming history and has sold over 12 million copies worldwide, a figure only bettered by The Sims. The gaming landscape is distinctly less inspiring without Rand Miller's insight. We wish the Cyan team all the best.