City of Heroes – 3rd Time The Charm?

I logged back into City of Heroes last night, hoping to meet up with a good friend of mine, whom I’ve been running into in various MMORPGs for what now seems forever. He’s been playing CoH since just about the time I quit (for the second time).

I sat there looking at the character creation screen. What to do? Normally, my instincts lead me to try to find a solid class that can hold it’s own while soloing. That often leaves me playing a class I wouldn’t have normally picked just based on what appeals to me. So instead I asked myself, “Self, what appeals to you here? What looks fun?” Well, being a super hero type game, I wanted to look and fight like a super hero. That rules out one of the better solo classes I had read about, the Scrapper. Basically, a Scrapper is a front line melee fighter. There are some options for variety, like a Katana or Martial Arts, but they all seemed like rather typical fighting classes to me. The only one I’d still consider is the Spines Scrapper. He has venomous spines all over his body to hit people with. At least that seems different enough to try.

I decided to choose something with a little variety, even though I have now been given early warnings that it is not possibly a very good solo class. I chose to go with a Defender, using Radiation Emission as my primary skillset and Dark Blast as my secondary skillset. So far it has been fun, if not way to early to comment on it. I am able to laydown a radiation field which has some debuffs (-accuracy -defense). This field is area of effect (AoE) so it hits everyone nearby my main target. Then, I blast away with my Dark attacks which also have accuracy debuffs.

Honestly, this has been my best character build yet. I’m breezing through missions, taking on 4 bad guys at once. I’m not sure how it will go in the future, but thanks to some help from my friend, I’ll give it a shot. If it gets ugly, I’ll switch to something else.

If it *is* going to get ugly, I hope it does so soon because I’m sick of starting over. It has become a chronic disease with me. My 2nd choice at this time is some sort of Blaster, as they have that whole super hero look going on hard core.

Yarrr, I be havin’ problems updating this blog, matey. I fear me sails have been shot full o’holes.

Why Did I Reactivate CoH?

Yeah, my account for City of Heroes is active again. I was sitting around at my computer, trying to think of something to do. Often when I feel that way I think about the fun times I’ve had in previous MMORPGs. Most of those fun times have involved 2 or 3 of the same people. One of them is playing CoH so I figured I’d try to hook up with him and give it another try.

Problem is, I still don’t enjoy the core gameplay. I can’t put my finger on it, but I can only do 2 or 3 missions before I feel the urge to log out and do something else. I’ve never had a character above level 10 (including my time in beta) so I would hope I’m missing out on the real fun still. I plan to pick one character and level them as far as I can to break past the previous max levels I’ve had.

Hopefully I will discover some new aspect of gameplay I’ve been missing out on.

World of Warcraft is still sitting on the back burner. I cannot come to grips with what is causing me to avoid it lately. I just seem to have no interest. Every class I’ve played is fun, for a while. Eventually I just get bored.

Been playing more BF:1942 (Desert Combat mod) lately. I am having a blast with that. Not any better at flying a helicopter yet. Quite the challenge. I still get a kick out of parachuting behind enemy lines and taking over a base single-handedly. Good times.

Latest MMORPG announcement? Star Trek MMORPG is now in development. Oh boy, I can see it now. The away team is in trouble so they call for someone to beam them up to the ship. Trouble is, the guy in charge of operating the transporter stepped away to make a sandwich.

City of Heroes Humor

There is a guy playing City of Heroes who keeps having conversations at the payphones. All you can hear is one side of the conversation (the pay phones don’t actually work so he is making it all up). It is very funny stuff. You can go look for the thread at the CoH forums (www.coh.com) but here is one of the conversations. Major kudos goes out to this guy whoever he is.

Ascendant: Hello, is this the offices of Saul Rubenstien, Agent to Paragon’s Elite?
Ascendant: Great. Can I speak to him? I’m a client.
Ascendant: Ascendant. No, with an ‘A’. D-A-N-T.
Ascendant: Ok, I’ll hold.
Ascendant: –lor said ‘Brandy, you’re a fine girl, what a good wife you would be, but my life, my love and m–
Ascendant: Hello, Saul, it’s Ascendant.
Ascendant: No, the one with an ‘A’.
Ascendant: I’m glad you asked. I’ve been going over these products you’ve sent me—
Ascendant: Right, for the merchandizing campaign…
Ascendant: Well, no, they aren’t. That’s why I’m calling, actually.
Ascendant: I’m not really happy with them.
Ascendant: Well, for starters, there’s the breakfast cereal.
Ascendant: Right, Ascendant-O’s.
Ascendant: Ok, it says here on the box ‘Includes Xenonite, the Secret Source of Ascendant’s Power’.
Ascendant: Well, for one thing, Xenonite is NOT the secret source of my powers.
Ascendant: No, Saul… No, it isn’t. Trust me on this.
Ascendant: Saul, Xenonite TAKES AWAY my powers.
Ascendant: Yeah, it does. In fact, if I’m exposed to it too long, it could kill me.
Ascendant: I dunno. It’s got something to do with radioactivity, I think.
Ascendant: Anyway, I poured a bowl of Ascendant-O’s yesterday to see what they taste like and nearly died before I could finish adding the milk.
Ascendant: Well, if the cat hadn’t come along and eaten it all, I would have, Saul.
Ascendant: My point is that we aren’t going to be selling Ascendant-O’s…
Ascendant: Because, Saul, I’m not putting on a lead suit every time I have to go to the cereal aisle in the grocery store.
Ascendant: I don’t care if you have already have a lot of pre-orders for it.
Ascendant: Really? How much?
Ascendant: From who?
Ascendant: Ok… Right… Yeah… Uh huh… Him, too? Really?
Ascendant: Yeah, well the problem here is that all those guys you just mentioned are supervillains, Saul.
Ascendant: Yes, even him. I just beat him up like an hour ago for trying to poison the city’s water supply.
Ascendant: I don’t care if his check cleared, Saul. That’s not the point…
Ascendant: Well, of course they’re going to use it to try and kill me, Saul.
Ascendant: Why else would a bunch of supervillains want a kid’s cereal laced with the one rare radioactive element I’m vulnerable to?
Ascendant: No, I don’t think they just want a well balanced breakfast.
Ascendant: Ok, as far as I’m concerned, this is a dead issue, Saul. Big NO on Ascendant-O’s.
Ascendant: Moving on: The Ascendant action figure.
Ascendant: No, I’m very disappointed, actually.
Ascendant: Well, for starters, it comes with a laser sword and a talking dinosaur that I supposedly ride into battle.
Ascendant: I don’t have either one of those things, Saul.
Ascendant: I don’t care if the focus groups thought it would be cool.
Ascendant: That’s utterly ridiculous, Saul.
Ascendant: Yes, it is. For one thing, where am I going to get a laser sword? Or a talking dinosaur, for that matter?
Ascendant: Fine, whatever. Anyway, I’m also a little concerned about the fact that it features ‘Burning Halo Action’…
Ascendant: Right, but aside from the fact that I don’t actually have that power–
Ascendant: No, Saul, I don’t.
Ascendant: I’d know it if I did, Saul, trust me.
Ascendant: –Aside from the fact that I don’t have anything like a Burning Halo power, do you really think it’s a good idea to sell kids an action figure that can spotaneously burst into flame?
Ascendant: I see… Well, we’re going to hold on that until I approve a redesign.
Ascendant: Moving on. The Ascendant Cave Action Playset.
Ascendant: Yeah, I actually like this thing. It doesn’t look anything like my apartment, but it’s pretty cool, I guess.
Ascendant: What do you mean they changed the name so it could fit on the box?
Ascendant: Well, sure, I guess Ascendant Cave Action Playset is a little long, but couldn’t they use a smaller font?
Ascendant: Fine, so what do they call it now? The Action Cave? Ascendant’s Lair? What?
Ascendant: The A-Hole?!?!?!
Ascendant: Why on Earth would they call it the A-Hole, Saul?
Ascendant: Yes, I understand the ‘A’ is short for Ascendant, you moron, but why not call it the A-Cave? or the A-Lair?
Ascendant: Uh huh… Yeah… I see…
Ascendant: Well, we’re NOT calling my secret headquarters the A-Hole, Saul, and that’s final.
Ascendant: Because I don’t want people to hear the word ‘Ascendant’ and immediately think ‘A-Hole’.
Ascendant: Ok, moving on. The Ascendant Action Hour TV Show.
Ascendant: Right. I actually like the opening animation of me that you’ve put together.
Ascendant: Right, the one where I’m sheathed in a burning halo of flame, riding around the city on a talking dinosaur, hitting bad guys with my laser sword and eating chunks of raw Xenonite.
Ascendant: I mean, that’s still not anything remotely close to real life, but I guess it looks pretty cool and the theme song is pretty catchy, so I’ll let it pass for now.
Ascendant: It’s the rest of the show that I have problems with, Saul.
Ascendant: Well, for one thing, outside of the opening theme part, the show itself is apparently just old episodes of Nightline, except every time someone says ‘Ted Koppel’, you dub over it with ‘Ascendant’.
Ascendant: I don’t care if each episode only costs $22.50 plus shipping to make, Saul. In fact, I don’t think you can even legally broadcast it.
Ascendant: What offshore pirate transmitter?
Ascendant: Saul, that’s a federal offence.
Ascendant: Yes… Yes, it is.
Ascendant: Yes, someone WILL care… They’re called the FCC, Saul.
Ascendant: Look, Saul, I’ve got to fire you.
Ascendant: I don’t see where you’ve left me much choice, Saul.
Ascendant: You’re selling cereal that can kill me to my archenemies, you’ve made my action figure not only ludicrous but potentially lethal to kids, and you’re comitting felonies by broadcasting illegal transmissions of Nightline from off shore.
Ascendant: Oh, and I almost forgot, you’re selling an action playset which proudly proclaims on the box that ‘Ascendant stores all of his most precious items inside his incredible A-Hole.’
Ascendant: And worst of all, my name is stamped all over all of this, Saul… I’m the one who’s going to be sued, or killed, or arrested… Maybe in that order, too.
Ascendant: Saul…
Ascendant: Saul…
Ascendant: Stop crying Saul…
Ascendant: Look… I know you tried your best.
Ascendant: (Sigh)… Ok, Fine…
Ascendant: Look, Ok, but just one more chance, Saul….
Ascendant: Just don’t do anything more until we can have a meeting, Saul.
Ascendant: No… For the last time, NO Broadway musical! Don’t even MENTION that idea again.
Ascendant: Ok, bye.

Final Fantasy XI

I decided to sign up for another month of FFXI. Since everyone that I have ever played MMORPGs with (including my brother) plays it, it seems logical to give it another shot. That and the fact that at $12.95 a month it is a virtual bargain compared to all the other MMORPGs.

Since I can’t keep up with them level-wise, I’m going to focus on being able to chat with them, as well as doing some crafting and fishing. And if they happen to be playing a new job in my level range I’ll go hunting with them.

There are a lot of quests in this game and I missed most of them because the last time I was playing I was trying to keep up with them. Impossible to do since they play at least 400% more time than I do.

I really wish more games would add the brilliant feature that City of Heroes has: the “Sidekick”. This allows you to team up with anyone, no matter what level they are, and go hunting. Your character is boosted up to a level or 2 below the other person and your stats scale up too. You don’t get any more skills or anything, but the ones you have scale up. Just plain cool.

So for now I begin the adventures of a low level FFXI explorer. I’ll keep you posted. All none of you.

The Cancel Button

Well, after some more time playing City of Heroes I hit the cancel button. My expectations of the game came true, there just is not enough going on to keep me interested in paying one of the highest monthly fees of any MMORPG.

So what now? I will keep playing Asheron’s Call 2 of course, but I’m not very motivated to log in lately. I’ve been playing Neverwinter Nights and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. MMORPGs have a long way to go before they can compete with games like KOTOR.

I’m still counting the days to World of Warcraft. I’m halfway tempted to sign up for another month of Anarchy Online or even Star Wars: Galaxies just for something else to do. *sigh*

City of Heroes Is Not Dead Yet

I decided I needed some action. I rolled up a new guy in City of Heroes. I chose the tank class and made him an Axe user. Seems really odd to have a battle axe in this game, so I made my guy look like a dwarf. As silly as that sounds, I actually had fun again. Maybe I’ll give this game one more month. I’d like to at least try out flying.

I also applied for 2 new beta tests. Everquest 2 and The Matrix Online. Currently I am testing The Saga of Ryzom and another one that I am not allowed to mention. Yes, I honor NDAs. I really do not like Ryzom, but some people say it is fun. I just can’t get past the character models. I hate them all.