Sony Online's multiplayer game The Matrix Online is now dead, as of yesterday. But rather than simply announcing that they were pulling the plug and then watching the players dwindle away as D-day approached, Sony decided to work the shutdown into the storyline of the game, changing the game's graphics so that they decayed and crumbled. The last weeks of The Matrix Online were a party, with all players — past and present — invited along.
It's a rare institution that contemplates its own orderly demise. Think of all the clubs and mailing lists and communities you've been a part of that have gone out with a whimper, bleeding out by drips, until there's nothing left. Kudos to Sony for giving a proper send-off to a place that so many people had loved and played in.
This week is the last week for The Matrix Online and all former subscribers are welcomed to come back to play one final time before the machines pull the plug for good. The Matrix crashes on July 31st, so be sure to be logged in on that day to be assaulted by pretty much everyone and everything until everyone's RSI is smashed into a tiny, tiny ball.