True to Comic Books

Many comic book writers, artists, and publishers are truly lousy at keeping deadlines. I recall the early days of Image, with about two comics that managed to publish monthly. This proud tradition continues today, with monthly comics that publish five times a year and quarterly comics that will someday get their second issues. Others take the “fast, good, or quick: pick two” approach, consistently arriving on time, under budget, and guess about the quality.

The City of Heroes developers are aware that yesterday marked four months since their last Issue. That was the major update where two evenings was enough time to finish all the new content available without making new alts.

So if you noticed that I have not been posting much about City of Heroes, that would be why.

The funny thing is, the game is supposed to have been getting increased attention since the NCSoft acquisition. Maybe it is taking longer than expected to train the new hires, or maybe they are re-writing half the game. They did, however, find resources for two new microtransactions options: rent a rocket pack for all characters for a month ($5) and the Cyborg pack with costume pieces, emotes, and a Self-Destruct power ($10). Is it still “micro” at $10? The Cyborg bits are, at any rate, a permanent account upgrade.

: Zubon

7 thoughts on “True to Comic Books”

  1. It wouldn’t have been as bad if Cimerora was a fully-featured zone on the scale of , but it’s rather similar to the Shadow Shard or PvP zones in the most of the missions are kinda jokes. In their defense, though, i12 did include Villain epic archetypes, which is a good 50 levels worth of new gameplay, but you have to wonder why they couldn’t pump out a decent array of Cimerora missions with a real plot behind them, or even drop down a few contacts to cover the less described groups within the normal game, like the Tsoo, Outcasts, or Banished Pantheon.

    Given that i13 includes a mission creator and Cimeroa missions, it should make up for the lackluster time… hopefully.

    But they needed to have i13 in beta by yesterday. They really should buffer out mission updates that are easier and more reliable to put down in time, between the feature and power-set ones that can be knocked out by a bug.

  2. I’m sure they have already dispelled this, but I’m guessing it may have to do with the work on Champions Online. Certainly they have two separate teams but the division of some CoX people undoubtedly moving to that title and bringing new people into CoX as replacements surely is having some impact during the transition. No doubt they will get back on track at some point.

  3. Cryptic is doing Champions Online, and it separated from NCsoft quite a while ago. CoX was sold, lock, stock, barrel and live team to NCsoft, and they became NCsoft NorCal, or NCNC.

    So no, completely different companies now, not two teams.

  4. I am not surprised if there is a slowdown. New people and more people does not make things faster automatically.

    Besides, new people may also have been in areas which possibly was covered outside the live team at Cryptic, if they would have done changes. The core engine might be one of those.

  5. I have gathered there was a severe glitch in something that involved going back and tearing everything out and restarting from a relatively early level.

  6. @Jeromai – Thanks – to be honest I haven’t played CoAnything in a long time, and wasn’t following it closely enough to realize there had been a complete switch like that. My apologies and thanks for the relevant update.

  7. A general rule of thumb is that if a game suddenly introduces micro-transactions then its probably not connected to Cryptic Studios anymore. Jack Emmert has made their position wonderfully clear in several GDC panels.

    It’s funny but I have a feeling that Champions is going to almost completely cannibalize the current population of CoH and CoV. NCSoft isn’t as stubborn as Cryptic about holding to a vision (mixing power sets) but they ruin whatever points they gain by focusing so much on micro-transaction content.

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