Preview: DC Universe Online

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strangeotron:
when is this supposed to be released?

According to Amazon.com the release date is January 11 2011. Less than a month from now.

Amazon's word on release dates carries no credibility and the game's own website says nothing at all (smart).

I'd consider getting a ps3 (i am anyway) becuse i really want to see what this is like, but it's still in beta.

That and the price of second hand consoles is fucking absurdity incarnate.

Karacan:

Jbird:

If I don't have to tweak my appearance, then the game shouldn't do it, as well. When I make a character in this game, I don't want it's appearance to change against my will. Now, if there were an option to save my costume as, say, a card, then I can swap out for another saved costume on the fly. Sorta like that other super-hero MMO. Anyway, I do take the time to dress my virtual action figure because I'm OCD that way.

Um, I just joined the beta yesterday. When I found new equipment pieces, I was asked if I wanted to change the appearance of my costume or not.

This is the PC version though, maybe the PS3 works differently? :)

I saw that, too. But when I picked "no", the piece wouldn't equip at all.

Jbird:

Karacan:

Jbird:

If I don't have to tweak my appearance, then the game shouldn't do it, as well. When I make a character in this game, I don't want it's appearance to change against my will. Now, if there were an option to save my costume as, say, a card, then I can swap out for another saved costume on the fly. Sorta like that other super-hero MMO. Anyway, I do take the time to dress my virtual action figure because I'm OCD that way.

Um, I just joined the beta yesterday. When I found new equipment pieces, I was asked if I wanted to change the appearance of my costume or not.

This is the PC version though, maybe the PS3 works differently? :)

I saw that, too. But when I picked "no", the piece wouldn't equip at all.

That's weird, at least the lower level stuff (I didn't have much time to play around yet) definitely equips even if not displaying. At least I get the statbonus.

Again, this is the PC version. :)

Karacan:

Jbird:

Karacan:

Um, I just joined the beta yesterday. When I found new equipment pieces, I was asked if I wanted to change the appearance of my costume or not.

This is the PC version though, maybe the PS3 works differently? :)

I saw that, too. But when I picked "no", the piece wouldn't equip at all.

That's weird, at least the lower level stuff (I didn't have much time to play around yet) definitely equips even if not displaying. At least I get the statbonus.

Again, this is the PC version. :)

I'm curious to ask if, on the PC version, that Reactor Core console in the Watchtower is where it's suppose to be. For me, it's stuck in the environment.

Hey, it's Champions Online with less content and Vindictus' combat.

Pass.

Kiraxa:
Name ONE DC hero that does nothing but spam powers. Every DC hero goes brawl-mode constantly.

Zatara
Doctor Fate
Firestorm
Doctor Light
Jade

To be fair, no one knew shit about Vindictus when development for DCUO started. They oughtta get some credit no matter how similar you say they are.

strangeotron:

I'd consider getting a ps3 (i am anyway) becuse i really want to see what this is like, but it's still in beta.

Actually, beta for psn will still cost you a (smaller) subscript to playstation plus, the dumbest load of crap I've ever seen. It's basically paying monthlies toward things that should be free anyway, like avatars and demos. It's the only reason I'm not in the beta myself.

Well the beta is closed to new players so they must be getting ready for release - presumably.

Charging people to play in the beta? Extraordinary!

Still, it's nowhere near as bad as paying for XBL.

This line is what said the most of the entire preview:
"DCUO was good enough to pull Greg Tito away from leveling my worgen druid with (almost) no regrets."

So I could either spend 12 bucks a month to play a game I already know and love, OR I could spend equal amounts of money on a game which makes me wish I was playing the first game again..

I am very intrested,but my track record says mmo's dont match with my attention span. This is the first preview to get me interested though.
I played champions online for a while, till around level 25, then got bored
didnt manage to get into wow at all, got 2 level 20 that litraly hated it...
I have clocked more playtime on mgs2 then any mmo :/
and it was cheaper...

llagrok:
Hey, it's Champions Online with less content and Vindictus' combat.

Pass.

Kiraxa:
Name ONE DC hero that does nothing but spam powers. Every DC hero goes brawl-mode constantly.

Zatara
Doctor Fate
Firestorm
Doctor Light
Jade

Neither Vindictus nor CO lets you interact with the Iconic and beloved characters of DC Comics. And while that might not mean much to you the same is not going to be true for a lot of other people.

In answer to the many questions regarding when DCUO will be released, the answer is that we don't know. SOE is determined to release a finished product, and will not come out with an MMO that doesn't feel incredibly polished. The release has been held back until they are 100% happy with it so while I expect it to be int he first half of 2011, I can't tell you when that will be.

A1:
Neither Vindictus nor CO lets you interact with the Iconic and beloved characters of DC Comics. And while that might not mean much to you the same is not going to be true for a lot of other people.

Feels like something a skin could've accomplished.

It's not as though we'll actually interact with anything resembling the characters from DC. It's an MMO. I have a feeling we won't see even a glimpse of the characters as they are from the quality comics that have been written about them. If anything, I reckon they'll be somewhat identical to their cartoon-counterparts.

Time will tell, but the promise of being able to "interact" with personalities in an MMO, rarely bodes well.

Here's hoping it won't fill up with a bunch of "heroes" in terrible outfits named "Coqandballs" or "SuPeSXXX" in the first few weeks...

llagrok:

A1:
Neither Vindictus nor CO lets you interact with the Iconic and beloved characters of DC Comics. And while that might not mean much to you the same is not going to be true for a lot of other people.

Feels like something a skin could've accomplished.

It's not as though we'll actually interact with anything resembling the characters from DC. It's an MMO. I have a feeling we won't see even a glimpse of the characters as they are from the quality comics that have been written about them. If anything, I reckon they'll be somewhat identical to their cartoon-counterparts.

Time will tell, but the promise of being able to "interact" with personalities in an MMO, rarely bodes well.

Skins don't account for voice acting and writing. And on the contrary, Geoff Johns and Marv Wolfman are working on the game. And Chris Cao and Jens Andersen by all accounts appear to hold the source material in very high regard. And there is also the upcoming DC Legends comic book series to take into account. So I think there is plenty of reason to expect an experience that is very true to the comics. Or in other words plenty of reason to be optimistic, at least in this particular regard.

Arawn.Chernobog:
Here's hoping it won't fill up with a bunch of "heroes" in terrible outfits named "Coqandballs" or "SuPeSXXX" in the first few weeks...

I called my Beta character

BatWaffle

:P

you love it really.

Never got a chance to test the beta for fun yet.

tomorrow will be good! :'D

A1:
Skins don't account for voice acting and writing. And on the contrary, Geoff Johns and Marv Wolfman are working on the game. And Chris Cao and Jens Andersen by all accounts appear to hold the source material in very high regard. And there is also the upcoming DC Legends comic book series to take into account. So I think there is plenty of reason to expect an experience that is very true to the comics. Or in other words plenty of reason to be optimistic, at least in this particular regard.

I'm afraid Geoff Johns doesn't account for the quality writing of any, save the Flash (occasionally) and a few of his villains.

Jbird:

Karacan:

Jbird:

If I don't have to tweak my appearance, then the game shouldn't do it, as well. When I make a character in this game, I don't want it's appearance to change against my will. Now, if there were an option to save my costume as, say, a card, then I can swap out for another saved costume on the fly. Sorta like that other super-hero MMO. Anyway, I do take the time to dress my virtual action figure because I'm OCD that way.

Um, I just joined the beta yesterday. When I found new equipment pieces, I was asked if I wanted to change the appearance of my costume or not.

This is the PC version though, maybe the PS3 works differently? :)

I saw that, too. But when I picked "no", the piece wouldn't equip at all.

The pause tab with the visor controls appearance. You can pick what you want shown there from what you've collected.
Anyway, I've been playing the beta, and have REALLY been enjoying it. My superfast ice and staff using villain is AWESOME.

F-I-D-O:

Jbird:

Karacan:

Um, I just joined the beta yesterday. When I found new equipment pieces, I was asked if I wanted to change the appearance of my costume or not.

This is the PC version though, maybe the PS3 works differently? :)

I saw that, too. But when I picked "no", the piece wouldn't equip at all.

The pause tab with the visor controls appearance. You can pick what you want shown there from what you've collected.

...I'll just presume you didn't see my other posts.

llagrok:

A1:
Skins don't account for voice acting and writing. And on the contrary, Geoff Johns and Marv Wolfman are working on the game. And Chris Cao and Jens Andersen by all accounts appear to hold the source material in very high regard. And there is also the upcoming DC Legends comic book series to take into account. So I think there is plenty of reason to expect an experience that is very true to the comics. Or in other words plenty of reason to be optimistic, at least in this particular regard.

I'm afraid Geoff Johns doesn't account for the quality writing of any, save the Flash (occasionally) and a few of his villains.

Ah.

That old and long-running Anti-Johns vs. Pro-Johns debate. I've never really understood why some people dislike him so much. Personally I like his work on numerous titles and IPs and so do a lot of other people. He didn't become the Chief Creative Officer at DC Comics for nothing.

llagrok:

A1:
Neither Vindictus nor CO lets you interact with the Iconic and beloved characters of DC Comics. And while that might not mean much to you the same is not going to be true for a lot of other people.

Feels like something a skin could've accomplished.

It's not as though we'll actually interact with anything resembling the characters from DC. It's an MMO. I have a feeling we won't see even a glimpse of the characters as they are from the quality comics that have been written about them. If anything, I reckon they'll be somewhat identical to their cartoon-counterparts.

Time will tell, but the promise of being able to "interact" with personalities in an MMO, rarely bodes well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLPzuAa1N_E

This vid shows a villain playing beside the Sinestro Corps against the GL Corps with the key objective of defeating John Stewart. Dialog is crisp and character-relevant without putting you straight "cutscene mode" and the power rings are functioning like comic pages come to life. Isn't as high-speed flying as a normal lantern conflict, but remember this mission is open to acrobats and runners too.

That example is one of many gems that are available on the web. If you're really worried that icon-character interaction is little more than a skin covering then you're obviously not looking very hard.

A1:
Ah.

That old and long-running Anti-Johns vs. Pro-Johns debate. I've never really understood why some people dislike him so much. Personally I like his work on numerous titles and IPs and so do a lot of other people. He didn't become the Chief Creative Officer at DC Comics for nothing.

It doesn't have anything to do with "anti or pro johns" as much as "johns can't write/hasn't written every character well". He became CCO because his comics sold well, that's not an argument for or against quality. Dan Brown's been selling more than Ishiguro Kazuo. Doesn't make his books better, it makes them more popular. It's like Loeb. His Hulk comics outsells Sweet-tooth and The Unwritten by 10 to 1. They are still terrible comics.

SmileyBat:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLPzuAa1N_E

This vid shows a villain playing beside the Sinestro Corps against the GL Corps with the key objective of defeating John Stewart. Dialog is crisp and character-relevant without putting you straight "cutscene mode" and the power rings are functioning like comic pages come to life. Isn't as high-speed flying as a normal lantern conflict, but remember this mission is open to acrobats and runners too.

That example is one of many gems that are available on the web. If you're really worried that icon-character interaction is little more than a skin covering then you're obviously not looking very hard.

I don't know how similar those power rings are to their comic book counterparts. The "hammer creation" gets recycled about a hundred times in there, but that's a different matter. Participation in the involved creative director's more recent best-selling arc, is a gem? Or is it highly obvious and to be expected?

Anyways. My point was never that we would not see things from the DC comics in the DC unviverse online game, which we obviously would.... It was the there would be no true interaction, solely due to the fact that it is an mmo. You will be offered a virtually identical line of storytelling after making a few faction choices. This isn't something new, it's exactly the same that every other MMO set in a pre-existing universe is already doing. It's not the presence of source material -as they will undoubtedly have more than enough of that- rather it's the quality of writing and storytelling that we will be met with. It's also about how it won't really feel like interacting when after being dumped a few lines from Superman, I'll respond with "accept" or "decline". They will be steadfast NPCs and every hero/villain will naturally trudge along down a preset storyline.

Sure it will be Mark Hamilton playing the Joker's quest-description. It won't feel like interacting with the joker however, as it's not as though the NPC will really have many of the Joker's traits. What do you think the odds are of the Joker flipping out and massacring a hundred players? Why, zero of course. Everybody gets equal treatment. Who would want that in the DC universe? Who would realistically get that in the DC verse? No one. 'tis the limitations of the genre.

You don't take Joker-themed instances into account. There will be beyond doubt missions to oppose Joker that most players will die in before ever succeeding. If they do succeed then it's for the merit of their skill, teamwork and strategy. Joker will be pulling all manner of crazy novelties to kill you with while firing off some dark quips, and since this is primarily an action title when it comes to it's battle mechanic, it will likely be too difficult for the soloing newcomer at the very least. Similarly, villains will get to try taking on Bats and promptly get a new respect for the kind of abuse his villains endure. This isn't simple yes/no interaction, it's the very best creative license interaction you can expect to find, short of hiring a costumed Christian Bale to break your legs and give you phobias. It's not hard to consider these things and come up with the explanations. I'm having a hard time taking you seriously when your complaints are this paper-thin.

It's Hamill, btw

Oh also there is a character rostered 2v2 arena alluded to; my preorder enables me to enter as Batman, and many others are available to fight with.

llagrok:

A1:
Ah.

That old and long-running Anti-Johns vs. Pro-Johns debate. I've never really understood why some people dislike him so much. Personally I like his work on numerous titles and IPs and so do a lot of other people. He didn't become the Chief Creative Officer at DC Comics for nothing.

It doesn't have anything to do with "anti or pro johns" as much as "johns can't write/hasn't written every character well". He became CCO because his comics sold well, that's not an argument for or against quality. Dan Brown's been selling more than Ishiguro Kazuo. Doesn't make his books better, it makes them more popular. It's like Loeb. His Hulk comics outsells Sweet-tooth and The Unwritten by 10 to 1. They are still terrible comics.

SmileyBat:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLPzuAa1N_E

This vid shows a villain playing beside the Sinestro Corps against the GL Corps with the key objective of defeating John Stewart. Dialog is crisp and character-relevant without putting you straight "cutscene mode" and the power rings are functioning like comic pages come to life. Isn't as high-speed flying as a normal lantern conflict, but remember this mission is open to acrobats and runners too.

That example is one of many gems that are available on the web. If you're really worried that icon-character interaction is little more than a skin covering then you're obviously not looking very hard.

I don't know how similar those power rings are to their comic book counterparts. The "hammer creation" gets recycled about a hundred times in there, but that's a different matter. Participation in the involved creative director's more recent best-selling arc, is a gem? Or is it highly obvious and to be expected?

Anyways. My point was never that we would not see things from the DC comics in the DC unviverse online game, which we obviously would.... It was the there would be no true interaction, solely due to the fact that it is an mmo. You will be offered a virtually identical line of storytelling after making a few faction choices. This isn't something new, it's exactly the same that every other MMO set in a pre-existing universe is already doing. It's not the presence of source material -as they will undoubtedly have more than enough of that- rather it's the quality of writing and storytelling that we will be met with. It's also about how it won't really feel like interacting when after being dumped a few lines from Superman, I'll respond with "accept" or "decline". They will be steadfast NPCs and every hero/villain will naturally trudge along down a preset storyline.

Sure it will be Mark Hamilton playing the Joker's quest-description. It won't feel like interacting with the joker however, as it's not as though the NPC will really have many of the Joker's traits. What do you think the odds are of the Joker flipping out and massacring a hundred players? Why, zero of course. Everybody gets equal treatment. Who would want that in the DC universe? Who would realistically get that in the DC verse? No one. 'tis the limitations of the genre.

Enough.

It would certainly seem that all of this in some way, shape, or form ultimately comes down to personal opinion and preferences. You may not feel something or think highly of something (and I am sorry you feel that way), but that certainly doesn't mean others don't or won't. And from the positive feedback coming out of the beta it would seem that a lot of people are feeling the desired effect of being part of the DC Universe. The negative feedback seems to largely stem from other issues.

And yes, Geoff Johns is indeed popular. And there is a reason for that. It's because in general he connects with people, connects with fans. And when all has been said and done it would seem that that is indeed the most important thing in this industry.

A1:
Enough.

It would certainly seem that all of this in some way, shape, or form ultimately comes down to personal opinion and preferences. You may not feel something or think highly of something (and I am sorry you feel that way), but that certainly doesn't mean others don't or won't. And from the positive feedback coming out of the beta it would seem that a lot of people are feeling the desired effect of being part of the DC Universe. The negative feedback seems to largely stem from other issues.

And yes, Geoff Johns is indeed popular. And there is a reason for that. It's because in general he connects with people, connects with fans. And when all has been said and done it would seem that that is indeed the most important thing in this industry.

So you choose to refute nothing and simply bring up something completely irrelevant?

Johns has written good stuff, but that doesn't even matter in the long run. No matter how well Johns writes it, it will still be interaction through an mmo. Which means that it won't feel like true interaction. It will feel like interacting with a message board that has a voice chat.

Beta-testers love anything. They loved Final Fantasy 14.

Sure. Disregard my message detailing how the game interacts through mechanic, not text. Once you have that, what more can you really ask for?

why would they cut cocaine with meth??

I take it you watch eNN? Just saw that episode yesterday, lol.

llagrok:

A1:
Enough.

It would certainly seem that all of this in some way, shape, or form ultimately comes down to personal opinion and preferences. You may not feel something or think highly of something (and I am sorry you feel that way), but that certainly doesn't mean others don't or won't. And from the positive feedback coming out of the beta it would seem that a lot of people are feeling the desired effect of being part of the DC Universe. The negative feedback seems to largely stem from other issues.

And yes, Geoff Johns is indeed popular. And there is a reason for that. It's because in general he connects with people, connects with fans. And when all has been said and done it would seem that that is indeed the most important thing in this industry.

So you choose to refute nothing and simply bring up something completely irrelevant?

Johns has written good stuff, but that doesn't even matter in the long run. No matter how well Johns writes it, it will still be interaction through an mmo. Which means that it won't feel like true interaction. It will feel like interacting with a message board that has a voice chat.

Beta-testers love anything. They loved Final Fantasy 14.

Irrelevant you say? And completely irrelevant at that?

I'm afraid not. But if you really can't see the connection then that is your problem, not mine.

Maybe it won't feel like true interaction for you, but evidently the same is not true for other people.

KeyMaster45:

I've played both CoH and Champions; and after the initial customization of characters both games lose their flare after a few hours.

Are you kidding? I was on the CoH generator for DAYS.

Not to mention since both games are not built upon existing IP

Wrong

(well Champions was supposed to be Marvel Online I hear)

Insanely wrong. Champions was built on the Champions IP.

they throw wall upon wall of lore and background at the player every mission.

No they don't.

Aside from just the base stories you're given for each area their deeper stories just seem neigh impenetrable without sitting down for a few hours and combing through everything the developers have thrown at you.

Seer Marino, your argument is invalid.

All three have the same flaw that irks me to no end;the soundtrack. Cripes people is it to hard to ask for a "loop music" button on our audio menu? It sucks so much life out of the game.

The CoH soundtrack is still one of the best I've heard. I honestly have no idea if you played the same game.

In final summation; DC Universe Online kicks 9 kinds of ass in my book and I look forward to continuing my reign of terror as the villainous Professor Metric Chaos when the game goes live.

It's a good game, but it's not overly better than CoH. That's not a bad thing, and it does do somethings better, but it's still got some pretty heavy niggles - like no Sonics, Darkforce, Teleportation, Robotic Powersuits for starters, neck coverings, very bad social UI, no customisation over look, no background generators, no single pistol mechanics and a LOT of power spamming.

The_root_of_all_evil:

KeyMaster45:

I've played both CoH and Champions; and after the initial customization of characters both games lose their flare after a few hours.

Are you kidding? I was on the CoH generator for DAYS.

The CoH soundtrack is still one of the best I've heard. I honestly have no idea if you played the same game.

It's a good game, but it's not overly better than CoH. That's not a bad thing, and it does do somethings better, but it's still got some pretty heavy niggles - like no Sonics, Darkforce, Teleportation, Robotic Powersuits for starters, neck coverings, very bad social UI, no customisation over look, no background generators, no single pistol mechanics and a LOT of power spamming.

Actually Shamus had made a previous article pointing out this very thing; CoH had most content unlocked early on to put all the fun up front, but higher levels got noticeably bare.

The soundtrack is not great by any measures. That annoying techno loop in most of the technology levels was shallow and repetitive, like a jumble of a bunch of random electronic sfx on fast forward.

You're asking for things that largely don't exist in the DC Universe. Besides that, the devs said they went through many alternate power and weapon styles, deciding to cut away all the ones that weren't as fun to play with. Would you really want sonic attacks and single pistol even though it wouldn't be as fun or interesting as the others? And you're really splitting hairs here. You've got dual pistols and rifles to decide between; do you really have to be so hard to please as to demand a single pistol option?

No customization over look? You gotta be kidding me. And as far as a power suit, that's a skin you can select and/or earn.

Teleportation was the worst travel mode in CoH. Why would you be so upset that it doesn't see use in DCUO?

DCUO is wisely not trying to be a game that already exists. It doesn't have any reason to have darkforce or sonics, and complaining that it doesn't is just so much qq.

I got to say I was skeptical but after watching this video and playing a bit of the beta on my brothers ps3 I have to say I'm interested. While I'm not stupid to say some BS like it will topple wow, but if it works and they polish the few bugs I found in the beta i think it will at least be able to stand on its own.

SmileyBat:

Actually Shamus had made a previous article pointing out this very thing; CoH had most content unlocked early on to put all the fun up front, but higher levels got noticeably bare.

Which was later added on, at the expense of some of the earlier stuff. Bye Lusca, Hello Police Missions.

The soundtrack is not great by any measures. That annoying techno loop in most of the technology levels was shallow and repetitive, like a jumble of a bunch of random electronic sfx on fast forward.

Pfftt, I still listen to it now. Tastes vary.

You're asking for things that largely don't exist in the DC Universe.

You mean Sonics like Cyborg and Black Canary? Darkforce like Raven? Tele-reformation like Swamp Thing? Powersuits like Cyborg again. The Mad Hatter's Hat? The Riddler's Hat? These are basics filled by characters in game already.

Besides that, the devs said they went through many alternate power and weapon styles, deciding to cut away all the ones that weren't as fun to play with. Would you really want sonic attacks and single pistol even though it wouldn't be as fun or interesting as the others? And you're really splitting hairs here. You've got dual pistols and rifles to decide between; do you really have to be so hard to please as to demand a single pistol option?

They missed, badly. Bow and Arrows are an insanely underused power group. Single pistol would have been far better but dual pistol is more "gangsta". What would the Joker use? Single Pistol almost assuredly - he wouldn't be caught dead with Akimbo or Rifle.
There's little difference between Brawling and Martial Arts anyway, and no option for Stronghouse moves like Bane.

See, this is where they're really failing at the moment, not including the basics of DC characters. If I shapeshift, why am I fixed into appearing as a normal Gorilla - when Changeling doesn't, and neither does Gorilla Grodd. What good is illusion when the targeting lock will jump to you anyway?

No customization over look? You gotta be kidding me.

I didn't say no, I said limited. How many "Mask" options change what part of your face is showing but have none to have just eyes and mouth, as a basic example? Where are the fishnet tights for Zatara? Or is that another "unlock"?

And as far as a power suit, that's a skin you can select and/or earn.

But most High Tech characters start off with a clunky powersuit that gets upgraded to that suit. They need a powersuited character to begin with.

Teleportation was the worst travel mode in CoH. Why would you be so upset that it doesn't see use in DCUO?

Superspeed was FAR worse. Try Oranbega with Superspeed.

DCUO is wisely not trying to be a game that already exists. It doesn't have any reason to have darkforce or sonics, and complaining that it doesn't is just so much qq.

If it was wise, it would try to be better than an existing game. Two of the main characters you meet early on, that are lynchpins of the whole IP, are based around Darkforce and Sonics.
That's not QQ, that's understanding the IP.

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