A Simple Introduction

Let me start by thanking and welcoming all readers to what should be an informative, if not interesting new editorial column. It is my pleasure to provide accurate cool coverage with City of Heroes WarCry for a game that holds such broad potential. While my first objective will be to give a crisp summary of the changing state of the game I will most definitely find enough room to fit in my take concerning any given situation. However, I can assure all that I will never disguise my own motivations as absolute truth. Also, before the game actually releases a more conceptual and philosophical chunk of content can be expected. And possibly a brief history lesson.

It is often said in jest and in seriousness that the CoH community knows roughly ten percent of what we could call “concrete” facts about the game. In literal terms it seems quite fantastic though it is hard to speculate from what context the statement derives. Is it just Cryptic Studios playing its hand safe as it has done for over three years? The standard double-talk of, “Here it is, but we won’t certify it until it is locked down” shared among development houses as a weapon against fans? Or are there actually game systems in place of which we have no knowledge? I am willing to put some salt on the latter. The rarely mentioned “Elder Game”, as quoted by Statesman and Co., may very well constitute over 25% of the missing picture, but my personal hunch leans toward more unknowns than just that. Over the coming weeks before anything is actually known I will put a few highly controversial discussion points under the lights and analyze some possibilities.

I would like to close with a brief exposition of one aspect of my background. I have been a gamer by virtue of hobby for a very long time. Maybe too long. I debuted on the Atari 2600 and have since experienced nearly every game churn out cross-platform. It is almost universally natural for a gamer to dig superheroes, or the other way around to a lesser extent. But, I must admit that collecting actual comics was not my passion. My experience of the American Superhero culture is solely and firmly rooted in visual media. Though to my credit I was fed enough factoids by friends to keep myself loosely in the loop. To be particularly candid, the text font of most comics never really agreed with my eyes. Aside from a few very old and rare X-Factor, X-Men, and Spiderman comics obtained as gifts, I can sympathize with the comic fan, but his habits are a mysterious beast to me. So I do not step on any toes let me create a brief disclaimer. If I happen to leave any personal commentary open to ambiguity assume I sided with the comic book enthusiast. Every game has a backbone demographic and I acknowledge the one for City of Heroes.

My MMO genre experience could be described as a weathered journey. A strong leap out of the gates only to loose present momentum as the current properties on the market leave my desires starved. You name it and I have played it, but probably did not enjoy it. In the next few articles I will be drawing from that experience and my personal study of the genre to break City of Heroes down for a comparison with past examples. At its core, City of Heroes accentuates some very good theoretical positives of the “next-gen” crop with its design and methodology. Please join me in two weeks as we lick through the sugar-coating together.

-Crabby

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