Asmosdee’s digital board game, Pandemic, has been quietly withdrawn from sale “for a multitude of reasons that [the publisher] cannot disclose”.
Without formal announcement, Pandemic was delisted from Steam on 6th January, and it looks as though players can’t pick it up on mobile devices now, either (although if you already own the game, you should be able to re-download it again from your library if you’re quick). All signs of the game have been scrubbed from the company’s website, too.
The notice on Steam simply says “At the request of the publisher, Pandemic: The Board Game is no longer available for sale on Steam”. Players on Xbox and Nintendo Switch have until the end of January 2022 and July 2022 respectively to pick it up before it’s deleted from those stores, too.
While there’s been no formal explanation, a player reached out to Asmodee and reportedly received this curious email in response (thanks, PC Gamer):
“First of all, we want to thank you and all the Pandemic players for your loyalty and support over time. Unfortunately, we are taking the Pandemic app off the stores. We have worked hard over four years on Pandemic and withdrawing it from the stores has not been an easy choice. This decision was made with a heavy heart for a multitude of reasons that we cannot disclose.
“For now, only PC, App Store and Google Play has been removed. Microsoft version will follow 31th January 2022 and then Nintendo Switch by the end of July 2022.
“Regarding the game, as long as it has been purchased and downloaded prior to removal from the store, then you will continue to have access to the game. If you do uninstall the game, you will need to access your library to locate and install the game again.”
“It’s difficult to overstate Pandemic’s impact upon board gaming,” we said way back in 2016, when no-one really knew what the word pandemic meant or how it would have a different kind of impact on gaming in 2020.
“This game, in which players work together to save the world from an outbreak of deadly diseases, is the most successful cooperative board game of the last ten years, possibly of all time. Released in 2007, its blend of a simple, accessible ruleset framed around a tough, unpredictable puzzle has proved a hit with casual and hobbyist board gamers alike, and proved to both communities that playing together can be just as entertaining as playing competitively.”