I think it’s an outcropping of the anxieties that every one of these communities must feel due to the restrictions of capitalism. Once these games stop making money, the funnel of content and new is going to be turned off, and maybe the company pulls the plug entirely. That means you have an implicit competition with every other game of the type. A WoW player shouldn’t feel terrified of FFXIV blowing up the charts, but if all the energy goes there, that’s it, the party is over. I’m sure somebody out there was really interested in where the over-arching Avengers game storyline was going, and that won’t ever reach its planned conclusion once that game is shut down by 2023 or whatever.
This is why I prefer communities of already dead games, like Rollercoaster Tycoon 2. All the energy and development in those spaces are done by fan mods, and RCT2 is better than ever now, nearly twenty years after it released. There’s splendid pieces of art being made by small hyper-dedicated people. Sure, you won’t get Pete Davidson or something to do a cameo, but we don’t need to worry about Atari controlling the space. You can make your own Pete Davidson if you want.