Rockstar have today announced that they are closing the online services for three of their most popular titles on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. GTA Online, Max Payne 3 and L.A. Noire will have their servers shut down by 16 December 2021.
While the announcement itself isn't a surprise, it does leave us with the question of why now? No explanation for this is given as part of the announcement. The article on the Rockstar support page also offers no clarity.
Some have speculated it may have something to do with a wider support issue for the 360/PS3 with these titles being among the last to have online support still active. Again, this is not confirmed and it appears these games are at at the end of their online viability.
GTA Online still has a fair community around it with people having invested in their online profiles heavily over the last eight years. Now, all of this progress will be wiped as there is no feature allowing for characters to be transferred to newer versions of the game.
How Will It Work
Rockstar have lined out the roadmap for how the shutdown will happen. The first date of note is 16 September 2021. On this date, shark cards will no longer be purchasable in GTA Online for 360/PS3.
The online functionality, including stat tracking via Rockstar Social Club, as well as general servers for both Max Payne 3 and L.A. Noire will be closed immediately on this date also. The story modes of all games will be unaffected by the shutdown.
The final step then happens on 16 December 2021. This is when the online services and all accompanying features are shut down for GTA Online on the 360/PS3. Make sure you make the most of your time until this date and use up any digital currency as they are not refundable.