As you can see, CasualRO has ended. This was a result of several factors, first being that after three years of development and the gap between new and veteran players continuously widening despite multiple efforts to bridge the distance, the natural difference in power simply became such that PVP/WoE and other "core" end-game content lost its appeal, and as a result, drove several players away. As servers grow older, this is generally always the case, and without an incredibly large playerbase, it was nearly impossible to create a marketplace that would allow older players to move their merchandise down to newer players in a manner that would genuinely benefit both end-game users and new ones alike. Simply put, the game became stagnant, and less and less people began to play.
Secondly, the old staff simply became too busy, and I (Eiphes) take responsibility for not swapping out older staff members with new and fresh faces. Part of the difficulty of hiring for CasualRO is the fact that there simply is so much custom content that even players who have been apart of the community for 3+ months, still typically do not have a full mastery of the content offered on our server.
Finally, as a result of there not being an influx of newer faces on a regular basis, I (Eiphes) became uninspired and slowly began losing interest in developing for a dying project. Although I, and the staff, did our best to stall the end of the server for as long as possible, all of our efforts were ultimately in vain. The game is quite old, and although adding new content can be a great deal of fun, it's very difficult to maintain a consistent flow of content that the community enjoys and maintains interest in.
That all said, yes, CasualRO as we have grown to know it these past three years, is no more. While I have all of the account data fully intact, the server will not re-open to be playable with old characters and items.
What does that mean?
Ultimately, I do wish to re-open CasualRO, but fresh, and renewed. Rune Midgard was originally meant to be the successor to CasualRO, however, after receiving countless e-mails not supporting the idea, and then a considerable amount of data loss consisting of several month's work, that project was scrapped.
When will something new go up? I don't have an exact date set; not even for myself, as I wish to go through the old content with a fine-toothed comb, remove certain things, make adjustments, and go from there. After playing several other current MMOs for ideas of improvement, as well as researching current desirable trends, I've found a considerable amount of information that I truly want to incorporate into the design of CasualRO, while still maintaining the old RO feel we all love.
I've received countless e-mails, Facebook messages, and other communications in support of the server, as well as supporting the notion of closing the server down as it had essentially died. I apologize for anyone who had only recently joined, however, feel that closing the server, with the expectation to re-open at a later time, was ultimately the best choice.
I will re-open the community message board for communication purposes soon. I encourage players who weren't able to exchange contact information to do so, as well as provide feedback on the old server/content, and share ideas for whatever comes next.
Thank you all for your years of support and loyalty to the project. I hope to find a refreshed energy to bring about an even more enjoyable experience than the original iteration of cRO.