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Uru is a spinoff of the Myst series, first released in 2003 as Uru: Ages Beyond Myst by original series developer Cyan. Unlike the rest of the Myst games, Uru is set in the present day, and chronicles the effort to rebuild the recently-rediscovered D'ni civilization buried deep beneath the New Mexico desert. The restoration effort is led by the D'ni Restoration Council, but explorers let into the underground cavern by Jeff Zandi find that Yeesha has her own plan to effect a more spiritual restoration.
Originally, Ages Beyond Myst was intended to be the standalone introduction to a massively multiplayer online game (MMO) called Uru Live, which Cyan would support with regular content and story updates. It launched as an open beta called Uru Live: Prologue alongside the standalone Ages Beyond Myst release. Unfortunately, the game's publisher, UbiSoft, canceled the online game and shut down the Prologue servers in February of 2004. The remaining content that was already close to completion was repackaged as a set of two expansion packs: "To D'ni" and "The Path of the Shell". To D'ni was released several weeks after the online game was shut down as a free download, and The Path of the Shell was released several months later as a retail purchase. A compendium edition, Uru: Complete Chronicles, included the original game and both expansions, and was released at the same time.
In 2006, video game subscription service GameTap approached Cyan to revive Uru Live, this time as Myst Online: Uru Live. The game launched in February of 2007, with new content rolling out each month. In May, GameTap and Cyan began to package these releases as "episodes" that would condense that month's story material into a one-week period in an effort to improve engagement. The September update was billed as the "season 1 finale", after which no new content was released. After several months of silence, Cyan announced that GameTap had decided to cancel the game, and the servers were shut down in April of 2008.
In 2010, Cyan re-opened Myst Online: Uru Live as a free-to-play game commonly referred to as MOULa ("Myst Online: Uru Live, again"), and later open-sourced the game's engine. While several community-developed software updates have been applied since MOULa's launch, there has been no new content created by Cyan since the GameTap cancellation in 2008, and none is planned.