Looking for some superheroic fun to occupy your time this weekend? Champions Online
has brought back its Circus Malvanum event
with its vehicle theme. There’s even a new reward this time around, as players can earn a set of lion shoulders to show off their… pride? Sorry. It’s hard to resist the dad puns sometimes.
“For this week only, help Jo perfect her engine-making craft and you’ll receive the event-exclusive Steam Bike vehicle and enter to fly in the Circus Malvanum Sky Race,” Cryptic posted. “Come back every day for the next week and seek out Sapphire above the Ren Center for a Sky Race daily quest and receive a race prize pack!”
The event will conclude on August 30th.
Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve had some tantalizing rumors and teases that both Riot Games and Blizzard are building something new: Riot’s dangled some questions about maybe making an MMORPG – might it be a League of Legends MMO? – and Blizzard’s outright said it’s returning to the Diablo franchise for multiple projects (one of which is the Switch port announced this morning). Can we hope for an MMO from one of the big studios again – and should we?
That’s what we’re pondering in this week’s Massively Overthinking. Do you think either of these companies is actually working on a new MMORPG using an old IP, what might it look like if so, what are they working on if not, and what do you actually want to see happen? Read more
In our first part of this series looking back at the stupendous history of City of Heroes, we saw how the idea for this superhero MMORPG germinated from a tech millionaire who took his love for RPGs and comic books into the online world. Cryptic Studios was founded in 2000 with the intent of developing a new type of MMORPG, one with a superhero bent set in an original IP.
While the development period was fraught with difficulty, including a messy design, delays, and the departure of the studio’s co-founder, City of Heroes took shape by 2004 and finally entered into live operation that April to the delight of thousands of fledgling superheroes.
Today we’ll be walking through the next few years of this game’s lifecyle, including its launch, the initial issues, and a serious lawsuit that threatened to kill the game dead.
I certainly did not have to twist readers’ arms to get them to bring out a mountain of MMORPG character selfies set against interesting backdrops. Of course, everyone had their own definition of what that should mean…
“When it comes to character selfies the backdrop becomes less important if there is an important lore character in your picture,” said Ryuen. “Case in point: My humble Monk managed to snare Firiona Vie herself in EverQuest II for a quick pic before she had to attend to more pressing matters.”
She had more box art modeling to do. It’s exhausting, being one of the last of the Midriff Elves in the game.
Drama seems to plague Shroud of the Avatar, but if you can look past it, there’s some fun innovation going on inside Portalarium in regard to MMO mechanics. Portalarium Technical Director Chris Spears, for example, has been slowly revealing a massive new player-generated dungeon system for the game, hidden away in the bowels of the forums until this week’s newsletter.
If you’re a fan of City of Heroes’ old Mission Architect, Star Trek Online’s Foundry, or even Star Wars Galaxies’ ancient Chronicles system, you’ll see remnants of all of those in this system. Basically, you buy blueprints for individual pieces from NPCs, then combine them with mats to build your dungeon space chunk by chunk, on a housing lot, out in the real world. Eventually, you’ll populate “encounter rooms” with mobs and make it a real delve for other players.
A recent post by the City of Titans team in which it briefly mentioned “costume unlocks” for the upcoming superhero MMO got the community’s full interest. As such, the team followed that post up with a newer one discussing how costume unlocking is going to work when the game goes live.
The team stressed that a “majority” of costume and customization options are going to be available to everyone from the start. But the remainder will require unlocking, either from direct microtransaction purchases or through gameplay. And yes, every cash shop item can be obtained in-game through some effort.
“Items unlocked through gameplay will work a little differently,” the dev team explained. “Unlocked assets will only be available to the character that unlocked it, so if you want it for multiple characters you’ll have to earn it multiple times. Some items will come as rewards for completing storylines while others will be available just by exploring the world. Some will be easier to get and some will be harder, but all of them can be acquired through in-game effort alone.”
You know what gets me excited about upcoming MMOs? It’s certainly not the list of expected systems and features that have since become standard for most games in this genre. Good-looking fantasy online RPG? Neato, that’s terrific, but what else are you selling?
No, what truly grabs my attention is when a dev team uses its imagination and comes up with a creative feature that makes me sit back and say, “Wow, I wish they all had this!”
It’s a shame that we have seen plenty of these systems over the years that were tried maybe once or twice but never adapted into the greater sphere. Today we’re going to come up with 10 examples of such features that truly did try something revolutionary (or at least pretty cool) but haven’t seen follow-ups in games since.
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
Maybe you’ll discover a new game in this space — or be reminded of an old favorite! This week we have stories and videos from Neverwinter, Sea of Thieves, Reign of Guilds, OrbusVR, PlanetSide 2, Final Fantasy XIV, Manyland, Lineage 2 Revolution, Guardians of Ember, War Thunder, The Cycle, DCUO, and Final Fantasy XI, all waiting for you after the break!
You may not be able to return home to City of Heroes, but you can return to your home in CoH thanks to the latest Paragon Chat update. Massively OP’s Bree and MJ don’t have an old one to upload, but they will try to tour some and maybe even build up a new one. Join us live at 8:00 p.m. to check this awesome feature out.
What: City of Heroes (via Paragon Chat)
Who: Bree Royce and MJ Guthrie
When: 8:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday, August 2nd, 2018
The Teen Titans have joined DCUO
, and they want Massively OP’s MJ to join! Well, by want we mean that she has to audition to become a part for the team. What paces will they run her through? Will she get a spot? Join us live at 9:00 p.m. to watch the audition.
What: DC Universe Online
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 9:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, August 1st, 2018
On this week’s show, Bree and Justin do a belly flop right into a big pool of superhero MMOs, news, and fan projects. City of Heroes may be dead and gone many years now, but its legacy still lives on in surprising ways!
It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.
Listen to the show right now:
It was a bit of an unplanned superhero MMORPG weekend, what with news from City of Titans, Ship of Heroes, and City of Heroes’ Paragon Chat, not to mention our own incredibly luckily timed deep-dive into the history of City of Heroes. Ship of Heroes, for example, previewed Meltdown, sort of the Tony Stark of the spaceship’s heroic lineup.
Heroic Games has more in store on a much more granular level too. Studio boss Casey McGeever put up a lengthy forum post on exactly what the staff has been working on in July.
“We are working mostly on six big areas of the game: 1. The characters, costumes, morph targets, and related character art. 2. The city, props, buildings, mission maps, and other environmental art. 3. The code that works with the Unreal Engine, and creates the game. 4. The powers, animations, FX, and SFX. 5. The mission and big battle systems. 6. Leveling and advancement. […] Some of these things are really big, like the upgrade to UE 4.18, and adding TrueSKY (which required a month or more of work to get it the way we want it), and coding a custom significance manager, which allows automatic changes to deliver a reasonable range of FPS in-game by downplaying some things (like distant movements or distant shadows), or many, many improvements around the frame rate goals we set in place two years ago.”
If you’re wondering what that sound is echoing over the horizon, it’s just every City of Heroes fan freaking out about the return of one of their favorite MMO features to Paragon Chat. What used to be a mere chat shell that used the former game as a hangout keeps expanding its roleplay and social featureset — including the brand-new addition of player bases.
That’s right, supergroup bases are back in Paragon Chat, and the best thing is that if you happened to have saved yours from City of Heroes before it shut down, you’ll be able to import it into the game.
Base creation, importing, and editing is here with Paragon Chat’s Issue 2. The team stresses that since the program doesn’t have supergroups, the bases are associated instead with characters and accounts. Also, functional items cannot be used, although the team hopes to implement teleporter functionality in the future. That said, there’s a lot of potential and options for making, copying, and visiting bases without any worry of cost.
Need some base building tips? The team has you covered!
Source: Paragon Chat
, tips. Thanks Way Too Late, Tahquitz, Captain Electric, and Yrys!