City of Heroes’ Homecoming rogue servers have joined the Titan Network/NCsoft negotiations

Private server group seeks status as 'legitimate operation'

    
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Exactly one month ago, tangent to our interview with the Homecoming server team that’s part now-flourishing City of Heroes rogue server community, we also spoke to Tony Vazquez, the administrator of the Titan Network. He confirmed to us once again what he’d maintained all spring and summer, almost since the first story about the rogue servers first took off: that he was engaged in discussions between Titan Network and NCsoft over some sort of future for the game that wasn’t half-hidden in the shadows. As of July, we were told, negotiations were still continuing.

But now it’s become clear that Vazquez hasn’t been alone in those negotiations, as late last night, Homecoming representatives announced that not only is the group working alongside Titan Network in the NCsoft discussions but that legitimacy for Homecoming, and potentially other community servers, is indeed on the table.

“We know things have been really quiet from us lately, and we wanted to provide an update on what we’ve been up to,” Homecoming’s GM Jimmy writes. “Homecoming and The Titan Network are working together and are in active negotiations with NCSoft in order to turn Homecoming into a legitimate operation, and we’ve been making significant strides in recent weeks. It’s our intention to involve the entire community in this process when the time comes – which is not quite yet, but we’ll certainly be shouting from the rooftops when it is – hopefully Soon™. Please hang tight for the time being, and keep killing those Skuls.”

An identical message was posted to Facebook by Vazquez. A follow-up message from Homecoming clarifies that the Homecoming servers will “remain completely free to play.” (Currently, the servers are funded through monthly donation drives.) Either way, the announcement is unlikely to shock anyone who’s been following the whole saga all along, as many MMO gamers and even our readers had surmised that Homecoming’s moves over the past months (particularly taking public donations) likely indicated those devs had some sort of behind-the-scenes approval.

We spoke to multiple members of the Homecoming Team as well as TonyV over the course of several hours Wednesday night and can confirm the accuracy of the statement, but everyone’s staying publicly mum on the details, meaning it is not entirely clear yet what “involving the community” will mean, nor who constitutes that community, nor what sort of timeframe to expect. Obviously we’ll be updating with more as we can.

Our last interview with the Homecoming team can be found here; we prodded the devs for info on the servers’ population, funding, and ongoing development, though as we noted, some of our questions were not addressed, which we assumed was down to the negotiations.

Want to see what the fuss is all about? Our Stream Team has been checking out the revivified MMO in person this summer; here’s the most recent vid:

Source: Homecoming, Discord, Facebook
In the spring of 2019, gamers uncovered a secret City of Heroes server running using the sunsetted game’s original code, which was ultimately turned over to the community. There are now multiple public and private servers for the beloved superhero MMORPG, with over 100,000 people on Homecoming alone. NCsoft has not commented publicly or taken legal action on them and is still in talks with players regarding the game’s future as of August 2019.

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Vynlann

As someone who was a mod for the internal discussions with the discord that basically was brought to life upon the enlightenment of CoX coming back, these talks mean nothing. They never will and never have. This guy has been in “talks with NCsoft” for almost a decade. His word means nothing any one who takes it seriously needs to do a history check on him.

Now the new player in this field is homecoming. They are basically the longest standing private CoX server that’s been public. The problem is when we spoke with cipher he wasn’t going to do these talks. Now that’s changed? What a slime. I knew this was going to happen.

Not that it matters anymore, as it was what…2-3 months ago? The code is out there now, there’s no avoiding it. These talks won’t mean nothing, and never will. NCsoft disrespected this franchise and even if there was an NCsoft controlled server, it wouldn’t actually be healthy for the game.

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Dug From The Earth

The main thing ive got a gripe with is this.

NCSoft doesnt deserve to make a single dollar off of CoX at this point.

They abandoned it. They gave up on it. Hell, you could even say they simply didnt care about any money they were making, and chose to trash it instead.

Id HATE to see them have some sort of role in making official CoX servers again that brought in a profit(with subs and MTX earnings etc).

Id hate it a little less if they simply sold the rights to someone else.

Unfortunately, the only way for ncsoft to make ZERO money is for CoX to remain “free” in the hands of private servers, which places the future of the game on much more shaky ground.

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Leandro Pardini

Adding MTX or any other form of monetization is a dealbreaker for everyone involved. It’s not happening.

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Skoryy

Well, this is certainly a step in a positive direction! I was kind of not looking too forward to re-rolling all my Homecoming characters on the new official server – even more so if it was i24 – but this might have taken care of that!

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Witches

Wasn’t this how things went when the game shutdown?

Talks and hope that ended with the game being buried for a decade.

I’m still pretty pessimistic, but at least there seems to be no immediate threat of going after the rogue servers.

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Roger Christie

Nah, when it shutdown, the talks went nowhere fast. The fact that things have gotten to this point seems pretty optimistic to me.

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Castagere Shaikura

Bree, we know you love the game but please no more articles until you have something signed from NCsoft.

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Utakata

Nah…I rather see the play by play of what’s going down. Though I really do hope at some point we will see the news post where Bree ‘n all pop the champagne bottle on this! >.<

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Denice J. Cook

And at that point, Eliot will owe us a ticker tape parade! :P

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Castagere Shaikura

It just makes me crazy because of how long this could go on for.

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Bruno Brito

It’s good to have dreams.

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IronSalamander8 .

I want this to be good news but I won’t hold my breath. Having the game lose the cloud hanging over it would be great indeed though.

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

My feelings are they are going to do some sort of negotiation and there will be a sticking point and NCSoft will get pissy and release the hounds …ehm, lawyers.

So I’m gonna enjoy being a super for a bit longer but I suspect it’s gonna go away sooner than later now.

*shrugs*

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Utakata

Is that a hunch from vetted disclosed sources close to this, or are you just pulling a me? That is, won’t get my hopes up until everything is signed, sealed and dated. :(

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

If Darth Vader and uhm world politics have taught me nothing it’s this.

You may have a deal but if one side has all the power, they can alter the deal at any time and there is nothing you can do about it.

It’s just a hunch so I hope I’m wrong.

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Utakata

Oh…okays. :)

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

Just gonna leave this here.

I wish them the best but…

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Techno Wizard
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Techno Wizard

Today’s MMO’s are a crock of dung if people want to play unofficial MMO’s from the past that shut down officially. It just goes to show the rapid decline of modern MMO’s because of going politically correct, compared to the glorious creativity of yesteryear in its prime. CoH was in profit if memory serves when NCsoft forced a shutdown.

The past literally was a golden age. Yeah get holier-than-thou with your legal ethics buzzword jargon but it’s happening and there’s nothing you can do to change that, mother-superior’s on your high horses.

NCsoft would be fools not to get back on the CoH gravy train.

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

I don’t even…

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BalsBigBrother

Don’t do drugs

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Hirku

I can’t even if I wanted to, OP took them all.

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Bryan Correll

Comment of the week there, Hirku.

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Utakata

Speaking of PC…was there ever a Mac client for this game? O.o

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Legend Of Vinny T

I just checked the wiki, and they released one just after Issue 13. It was a Cider wrapper around the Windows executables, not native, unfortunately.

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Connor

“It just goes to show the rapid decline of modern MMO’s because of going politically correct”

Name three.

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Bruno Brito

Whatever you’re using, share.

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Legend Of Vinny T

Dietrich?

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