The City of Heroes community’s live rogue server, Torchbearer, came online yesterday thanks to player developers and continues today with a new record: over 22000 accounts,
3500 4000 concurrency, and 47000 characters, just in time for the game’s 15th anniversary this weekend.
But that doesn’t mean the players are resting on their laurels: The “Homecoming” team, as it’s calling itself, has just put up a second server this evening, accessible alongside Torchbearer, to help spread the load this weekend. It’s called Excelsior.
“We have launched second shard named Excelsior! Over the past 48 hours we’ve been closely monitoring the servers, and while we’ve been able to address and resolve some of the problems, we’re at a point where any further improvements we make to Torchbearer will suffer from diminishing returns. We’re hoping that this new shard will help spread the load out a little so that we are able to continue to grow and handle all of the hugs you guys are giving the servers.”
The player developers say they’re still working on cross-global chat, though global handles are indeed now a thing. [Update: Now both servers have a mutual global chat and auction hall.] But these are not technically sanctioned by NCsoft, and discussions with the company apparently continue on behind the scenes, so it is still not clear whether either of these shards will be wiped or maintained permanently, nor how they will be funded long-term.
“Our primary long-term goal is still to ensure that the community has a stable server that we can all enjoy together in perpetuity,” the devs write. “Right now we cannot say if this server will be that, but we are not closed off to that possibility. If for whatever reason that primary goal requires us to shut this server down or wipe the character database, then we will do that. Outside of fulfilling that goal, we don’t foresee any reason why a character wipe would need to occur.”
Expect double XP bonuses all weekend along with costume contests all Saturday on Excelsior. Happy 15th birthday, City of Heroes.
Update 04/27/2019 09:35 AM
Here are the precise details for the events today.
“In order to help celebrate the Anniversary, double XP will be enabled on Saturday, April 27th and will continue to remain active until 12:00 AM (Midnight) PST on Monday.
“We are planning to host costume contests at approx. 2 PM PST on Saturday, April 27th, on the Excelsior shard. Because of the amount of players we are expecting to have online over the weekend we cannot make this a guarantee but rest assured that it something that we want to do and will try our hardest to work out. As it currently stands, we plan to host these costume contests in Kings Row at Freedom Plaza (next to Blue Steel). The GMs will be spreading out across the different Kings Row instances to organize and run each costume contest. The winner in each costume contest will be awarded with 10 million influence and a fancy golden title. The three runner-ups will each be awarded 2 million influence and a slightly less fancy golden title.”
Update 04/27/2019 9:45 PM
Please remember that over the course of the last two weeks of this community effort, there have been bad actors making a concerted effort to thwart it or hassle participants, from faking articles to faking forum threads to the hoax that took down the first test server. Apparently now there are folks abusing the community by impersonating VIPs and illegitimately asking for money in the name of the devs on the current servers. Nobody legitimate is asking for money for these servers right now. Please do NOT give anyone money.
In fact it’s probably best to assume that if you’re hearing anything that isn’t coming directly from the Homecoming team or the Discord admin or verified by us, it’s probably bullshit.
There’s some good news from the team running the servers, however!
Update 04/28/2019 4:49 PM
Update queues have been pretty crazy today as the game approaches 30,000 accounts rolled. It looks as if two new servers are about to go live: Indomitable and Everlasting.
Update 04/28/2019 6:00 PM
Our complete City of Heroes rogue server coverage:
• Aug 12: City of Heroes’ Homecoming Team finally posted a new beta patch after months of public quiet
• Aug 8: City of Heroes’ Homecoming rogue servers have joined the Titan Network/NCsoft negotiations
• Jul 8: Catching up with City of Heroes’ Homecoming rogue servers as NCsoft negotiations continue
• Jun 8: One of City of Heroes’ rogue servers, Reborn/Pleiades, was just shut down by its operator
• Jun 3: City of Heroes: Homecoming hit 100K players as another donation round funds
• Jun 1: Perfect Ten: 10 things I’d love to see added to City of Heroes in the rogue server era
• May 30: City of Heroes: Homecoming adds numerical power cooldowns, nerfs Death from Below, adds User Agreement
• May 28: City of Heroes: Community harassment ramps up as Homecoming counts 91,000 players
• May 22: Perfect Ten: Helpful tips for returning to City of Heroes in 2019
• May 21: City of Heroes: All the public servers we know of, plus Reddit’s launch and Homecoming’s name release
• May 20: City of Heroes: Homecoming concurrency, Rebirth and Reddit’s i24 servers, and the future of basebuilding
• May 17: City of Heroes: Homecoming’s new home, EU players, multiboxing, SEGS, and… piglets
• May 15: City of Heroes rogue server teams activate i24 PTS, prep for tomorrow’s Homecoming server moves
• May 13: City of Heroes community forms Round Table as Homecoming rogue servers count over 56,000 players
• May 9: City of Heroes’ Homecoming servers port to Canada this weekend, server status page is live
• May 8: Leaderboard: Would you donate for a City of Heroes rogue server?
• May 7: City of Heroes: New servers, Discord drama, and Homecoming gets $6900 in donations in 20 minutes
• May 6: City of Heroes’ Homecoming rogue servers will offer character transfers after all
• May 4: City of Heroes now has a fifth rogue server live as Homecoming buffs up and work on i24 continues
• May 1: City of Heroes’ rogue servers nerf AE farms, boost XP, but can’t do character transfers
• Apr 29: Two weeks in, City of Heroes has four rogue servers and heartwarmingly massive queues
• Apr 26: Nearly 30K people have rolled City of Heroes rogue server accounts as the game turns 15 years old
• Apr 24: Aaaaand now there’s a new temporary City of Heroes rogue server up
• Apr 23: The Titan Network is negotiating to open a legal community-run City of Heroes server
• Apr 22: City of Heroes’ first new rogue server shut down over a fake legal threat, but admins say it’s coming back
• Apr 22: Leaderboard: Do you plan to play on a City of Heroes rogue server?
• Apr 21: City of Heroes’ rogue servers may abandon character restoration as 14000 gamers register to play
• Apr 19: Lawful Neutral: Is it safe to play on City of Heroes’ inevitable rogue servers?
• Apr 18: The City of Heroes private server team has released its code [Update: The test server is live]
• Apr 18: What’s going on with City of Heroes now: ‘This game is a unicorn’
• Apr 17: Massively OP Podcast Episode 217: City of Heroes after dark
• Apr 17: Into the Super-Verse: The death of the City of Heroes community
• Apr 16: Leaderboard: Where do you stand on the ‘secret’ City of Heroes emulator?
• Apr 15: ‘Secret’ City of Heroes emulator operators address SCORE leak drama, rebut personal info database rumor