City of Heroes/Villains News
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Posted Wed, Jul 28 2010 4:03 PM
Well it’s that time again, when fans descend upon San Diego and suck it dry of the valuable resources that nerds, geeks, and gamers alike so desperately need.

Comic Con International, the proverbial Mecca of all things comic, sc-fi, and pop culture related entertainment, boasts some impressive vendors. One of which, you all might know: NCSoft.

NCSoft’s booth was once again a hit, with several computers for both City of Heroes and Aion, a large screen displaying trailers for upcoming content, and a City of Heroes booth babe. A great amount of the creative minds behind the City of Heroes franchise graced the floor to speak with fans and tell newcomers all about the game, and why now is the best time to get in on the action.

Those computers dedicated to CoH had access to the beta content of Going Rogue, the long awaited expansion scheduled to hit stores on August 17, 2010. Veteran players and convention goers alike were privy to never before seen zones, costume pieces, power sets, and the Ultra Mode graphics system at its finest.

If that wasn’t enough to slake your thirst for City of Heroes at Comic Con 2010, the development team had their very own panel where they gave some details about the expansion, and opened themselves up to a Q and A session with fans.

Now, like many die hard players of the franchise, these descriptions aren’t enough to give you the information you want about Going Rogue. So, like a good 5 year veteran player, I will deliver the goods.
First, let’s start with character creation. Around seven new costume sets will be available to players upon their purchase of the expansion, each of which is tied to the new Praetorian zones. If a player chooses to start the game as a Praetorian, they have access to all ten primary power sets at the start of the game, the reasoning behind this is that Praetorian inhabitants are neither heroes nor villains at the get go, it is up to them to the player to decide if they will use their powers for good or ill.

Four new powersets. Boom. Duel pistols, demon summoning, electric control, and kinetic melee. Pistols and demon summoning were both available to players who pre-ordered, but the two hidden power sets are JUST as fun.

A feature that has created a lot of buzz is the new morality system. Heroes will be able to go from vigilante to villain. From villain, player will be able to move from rogue back to hero. If you really wanted to, you could go full circle, and back again, just for giggles and badges. The benefit to going through these morality shifts are impressive. If a hero chooses to be a vigilante, they will have access to both Paragon City and the Rogue Isles. If a villain goes rogue, they are able to go to the Rogue Isles and Paragon City. Pretty cool right? It doesn’t stop there. For those who wish to remain die-hard heroes or ruinous villains through and through, they will have access to special heroes-only/villains-only zones, and access to special purple IOs limited only to those heroes and villains. Something for everyone.

Another new feature that is being added to mission game play are the subterfuge and sabotage missions for Praetorians. Whilst on a mission for your contact in Praetoria, you are able to contact one of your previous contacts to see if they want you to do a secondary mission that will decide your characters morality, say arming a bomb or switching some data or planting a camera. This adds new depth to missions and character development as you begin to make decisions and choices that actually show your true colors.

Now let’s talk about Preatoria itself. It’s stunning, it’s expansive, it’s free from war walls, and it’s all new. David Nakayama, the Art Lead for the project, was able to sit down with me for a few minutes to talk about the task of creating an alternate Paragon City from the ground up.
“The zones themselves are almost an external characterization of certain signature characters in the universe,” Nakayama stated. Nova Preatoria is a reflection of the tyrant Emperor Cole, dressed in his immaculate white suit. The buildings are very much a part of the characters as they are their own characters, it seems. Another example he gave was that of Neuron’s sector of Praetoria, gilded with electric blue and adorned with tech. No more El Super Mexicano posters, they’ve been replaced with propaganda billboards telling us to point out neighbors who are Resistance members, or asking us to join the PPD in defense of Nova Preatoria. The Underground of Praetoria even has its own feel and theme as it houses the Resistance, citizens who attempt to defy Emperor Cole.

With all this talk of Praetoria, I have to mention the factions that inhabit this gleaming metropolis. Of course, there are the Loyalists and the Resistence. However, within each faction are two sub-factions, each with their own ideals and agendas that they will push on the player, giving more depth and drama to this seemingly flawed utopia.

WELL! That’s a lot isn’t it? The Brand Manager at Paragon Studios, took a break to talk to me about how they were trying to market a package so full of goodies. While it is an expansion of an existing game, Going Rogue can be seen almost as a stand-alone game in and of itself, which is something he hopes will draw new players to it. This works well because new players who start out as Praetorians will have access to ALL the power sets, even the new ones, so they will find out which ones suit their style of play, and then jump into Paragon City and the Isles.

I hope that was enough for all you fans out there. Check out the Dev Diaries on the City of Heroes and Going Rogue websites to see footage from Praetoria. I don’t know about you, but I can’t WAIT till August 17th!
Posted Sat, Jun 26 2010 1:15 PM
The new City of Heroes Super Booster, Number Five: Mutant, is now available for purchase through the NCSoft Store.

New costume sets and pieces are included in the booster back, ranging from organic armor to bioluminescence. Also, a Secondary Mutation Powerset is given to customers who purchase the booster. This powerset lets your character tap into their mutant abilities, lurking within their DNA, giving them Acute Senses, a Tough Hide, Pain Tolerance, Quick Reflexes, and a Heightened Speed. Be warned, however, some of these powers may help your foes and hinder you in battle.
Two new character emotes, Growl and Showoff, are in the buyable expansion as well as three new costume change emotes: energy morph, rapid boil, and dimensional shift.

More boosters means more character customization and immersion into the Sci-Fi/comic book realm of City of Heroes. What’s not to love?

Posted Sat, Jun 5 2010 5:03 PM
Jason Graves, the well-known and decorated musical composer, will be lending his skill to the Going Rogue soundtrack, which will be heard upon the expansion’s release. Graves is a classically trained composer who also boasts some talent with percussion instruments, guitars, and the keyboard. His work runs the gamut from real time strategy games such as Command and Conquer 4, to the critically acclaimed Dead Space.

Graves worked with the trumpet in college, but came out studying film scores and soon began to analyze them, trying to find out what it was in the music that moved audiences, eventually discovering the secret.

“Music should be emotional, even if it’s not supposed to be up front in your face…and when it’s just sitting there with some chords and a drum beat…it just takes up sonic space,” Graves explained. From his revelation and onward, Graves has mixed emotion with passion, creating some fantastic musical scores that have won him much recognition, including a British Academy Award.

Graves says that how he approaches a particular score is driven by the idea of the project, meaning the type of game, movie, or television program. The diversity in his work shows his ability and skill in making each score unique. His work on Dead Space., a linear horror-survival shooter, differs greatly from that of his work on the City of Heroes expansion Going Rogue .

Not a player himself, Graves’s eye was caught by City of Heroes when it was released and he revealed that it piqued his interest greatly, saying that when he looked into the game he thought, “I really wish I could do some superhero music!” However, after working on numerous other projects, before being approached for Going Rogue, Graves had to revisit his thoughts on the project, looking at comic films and trying to come up with the correct way to begin.

“It wasn’t interactive the way Dead Space was,” commented Graves as he explained the difference between the musical mechanics of both games. In Dead Space, the music heightened the suspense for the player by rising and falling for dramatic affect. Graves mentioned that the music of Going Rogue would mimic the tunes of City of Heroes by introducing different areas of the game, much like City of Heroes does when in Steel Canyon or any other zone.

But is the music in the expansion similar to that of the original game? While those who have followed the progress of the Going Rogue project know that something is amiss in Paetoria, Graves agreed that the music may reveal some secrets of the new world.

“There’s a hint of a theme in there,” Grave elaborated excitedly. While working on
Going Rogue, Graves was impressed with the amount of background and history there was to work with. And the team itself was very helpful to Graves by giving him the best idea of what sort of settings he would be working on and what vibe he needed to give them.

After much deliberation and brainstorming, Graves began working to give Going Rogue a more cinematic feel that mimicked the audio elements of film and television. However, he didn’t want to flood the game with fanfare and bravado. Instead, he chose a different route.

“It can be dark at times but it can be uplifting…But it’s still combat and it’s still tense.” Graves explained that the music would be something you would hear in the background of a film, to heighten the atmosphere and act as a player all its own. This would help to still create that heroic feel, but one that depicts the player’s character struggling against the forces of evil.

Grave’s excitement and enthusiasm about the project bodes well for players of the City of Heroes franchise. His work is superb, and it will surely add to the already growing reputation of City of Heroes. Players should look forward to some villain-smashing-day-saving-hero-fighting-bad-guy-plotting musical scores this summer.

Looking to learn more about Jason Graves? Visit his website here!
Posted Fri, May 14 2010 1:46 PM
With the release of I17 for City of Heroes, the graphics update called “Ultra Mode” was put into effect. Ultra Mode is a graphics option that allows users to enhance the graphics of the game if their system can handle the smoothing of certain shapes, the water details, the real time shadows, and many other environmental goodies.

Along with this new update, however, came a slew of crashes and connection problems that disconnect players from the game. Ultra Mode does present some excellent and well needed graphic updates for City of Heroes, but what exactly causes these crashes, and is it worth it for those who are continually dropped from the game?

My personal computer is an HP IQ1500, a PC that can run most high end games without a hitch, like Saboteur and Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2. However when I turn on City of Heroes, click the Ultra Mode settings on, I am immediately slowed down to a laggy version of the game that makes it hard to even keep up with basic solo missions.

I’ve tried debugging, but to no avail. Eventually the only solution would just be to turn off the Ultra Mode settings, but what is the point of that? I shouldn’t have to turn off the good graphics just to get a better game play experience. I mean, the update isn’t MAGNIFICENT, but it is substantial enough to see a difference. The question is, why does this happen? Why do players continually glitch out of the game, or map server out of the game?

Some think it has to do with an issue of so much streaming data coming in from the servers. Others just think that the coding and processes just weren’t tested with enough people to account for all the issues, thus releasing content that potentially damages the playing experience. Whatever the case may be, there is still a lot of work to be done to perfect this game mode.

Is Ultra Mode worth it? At this point, no, it’s not. The game updates that came ALONG with Ultra Mode are definitely worth it and are great additions, but the graphics seem to be the major issue. Until NCSoft figures out how to remedy this, there are going to be a lot of angry players who may just frustration quit.

Posted Mon, May 3 2010 8:53 AM
NCsoft has just launched the seventeenth free update to City of Heroes which brings several new features to the game world.

That's certainly a lot of content since the game's initial launch.

Here's a breakdown of the new features:
Ultra Mode: Experience Paragon City™ and the Rogue Isles™ in stunning detail. The graphics engine has received a spectacular upgrade and now provides more visual depth, contrast, and richness. Water surfaces now ripple realistically and reflect the world around them. Shadows are deeper, sharper, and move according to the time of day.

UI Upgrades: The Auction House has an enhanced UI, you can send Influence/Infamy attachments by mail, your character can now have up to seven active missions, and more.

Greater Customization: Enjoy new emotes and animated tails.

Story Content: Issue 17 begins a whole new story for your Hero or Villain that leads to City of Heroes Going Rogue. The signature Positron™ Task Force has been split into two halves and upgraded. Its new, dramatic final battle now incorporates the mysterious Issue 17 enemy.

Most of this is in preparation for City of Heroes Going Rogue, as even more changes are on their way with that new expansion in July.
Posted Sun, Mar 21 2010 3:59 PM
This is a great award for City of Heroes since Going Rogue is coming out within a few months. It should draw a lot of attention to the game and hopefully bring back some players who left after seeing that CoX is still number one with players.

Jason Winter, who wrote the article that had all of the winners of the various categories, made an interesting point. He feels that this category will see some action in the coming months with DC Universe Online coming out and after the release of Star Trek Online.

It is known that Star Trek is doing well for itself after it's initial release, and the DC Universe should boast some impessive gameplay (which I have had the opportunity to try out at the San Diego Comic Con). It will be interesting to see how Going Rogue's improvements and additions aid City of Heroes in stacking up against these two this year.

For the full story at Beckett Massive Online Gamer, and other winners, click here.
Posted Tue, Feb 9 2010 12:41 PM
NCSoft announced some City of Heroes/Villains updates today, which include new super-powered graphics, content and game enhancements coming with Issue 17 “Dark Mirror” this April.
The free update includes a superior graphics rendering process, dubbed “Ultra Mode,” that will give City of Heroes a new look and feel with a heightened level of detail in lighting, reflections, shadows and water effects. Ultra Mode will be scalable to ensure that all City of Heroes fans can enjoy their favorite comic-inspired game.

In addition to Ultra Mode enhancements, as part of Issue 17 players will confront a new and nefarious foe who will be able to match them blow for blow. Other features within Issue 17 “Dark Mirror” include:
  • New badges, new missions and new player emotes
  • Epic Archetypes now available at level 20
  • Improvements and additions to Mission Architect
  • Enhancements to UI and game systems
  • And dozens more

As players embark on the last major update to City of Heroes before the highly anticipated Going Rogue expansion, NCsoft is giving players a chance to enjoy early access to two Going Rogue power sets. Beginning March 2, players who pre-purchase City of Heroes Going Rogue (MSRP $29.99 USD) will be given immediate early access to the Dual Pistols power set, and access to the Demon Summoning power set starting in April.

Additionally, gamers new to the City of Heroes franchise can purchase the City of Heroes Going Rogue: Complete Collection (MSRP $39.99 USD), which includes City of Heroes, City of Villains and City of Heroes Going Rogue, as well as 30 days of free game time. Those who purchase this bundle at retail will be rewarded with the Complete Collection Item Pack featuring the following bonus items:
  • Alpha- and Omega-themed auras
  • Alpha and Omega themed costumed sets
  • Four stance emotes
  • The Shadowy Presence invisibility power

City of Heroes fans will get their chance to explore the grey area between heroism and villainy in Going Rogue this July with the beta beginning in the Spring.

For more information about City of Heroes as well as the upcoming Going Rogue expansion please visit
Posted Tue, Dec 15 2009 1:32 PM
Snow, ski chalets, snowball fights, skiing, and of course, funny hats. What is there not to like in the City of Heroes/Villains Winter Event? Starting today, December 15 and ending on January 15th, players will be able to enjoy that wonderfully seasonal spot in the D that tortures us year round until its reemergence. And now it has returned! Help save Baby New Year! Get cool winter swag, fun badges, and so much more! All you have to do is log on and enjoy. Have a holly jolly heroing holiday everyone!

Posted Thu, Nov 12 2009 11:12 AM
Start stretching those hamstrings, because NCsoft is launching its fourth booster pack for City of Heroes entitled: Martial Arts.

This $9.99 addition to the game nets you several things: a new costume set and ninja running powers with speed and leaping boosts.

The pack is available now, so go check it out.

City of Heroes players can now channel their inner chi by striking the perfect balance of style and power with the release of Super Booster IV: Martial Arts. The Super Booster pack, the 4th booster pack for the world’s most popular super-powered hero MMO, contains a number of martial arts themed costume pieces, a variety of stance emotes and costume change emotes and most importantly Ninja Run power.

The booster will only be supported in the English language and is available through the NCsoft store for $9.99 beginning today November 12. The features in the Super Booster pack will be available for all characters from level 1, however, to take advantage of the costume change players are required to unlock at least one additional costume slot.

· Ninja Run power: Dash through the city with the agility of a ninja! The Ninja Run power is a travel power used to strike fear in the hearts of your enemies as you increase your run speed and leaping abilities. And the best part, it doesn’t use one of your power selections!

· Martial Arts themed costume set: The Martial Arts themed male, female and huge costume parts include jackets, shoulders, legs, gloves, footwear, mask and head pieces, as well as new shoulder pieces, hair styles, chest emblems, and weapons. Male and huge characters also have the option to select the top knot hair style, while females will have the option for crazy anime style hair!
Posted Thu, Oct 1 2009 5:40 PM
As Hero-Con is mere weeks away, NCsoft and Paragon Studios are giving away Costume Codes to players from previous Special Event Costume Events.

If that's not confusing, then basically it's like this: follow City of Heroes on Twitter and Facebook, they'll randomly post a code, be the first to enter it into your account and you could win something like the PAX 2009 Carnival of Shadows costume.

Keep your fingers twitchy, sounds like these things are going to go fast.

You can read about it officially at the official site of officialness.
Posted Wed, Sep 30 2009 4:54 PM
As we get older, life always seems to move faster and faster. But this isn't always the case online. Progression can move slowly, especially in

To combat that, Paragon Studios are doubling experience for City of Heroes / Villains players for four straight days. Things moving too slowly for you? Your answer is a week away.

The double experience event takes place from October 8 through October 11.

In addition to the XP bonus, in the same time frame, all players with accounts in good-standing can return to the game and give it another shot.

The full press release is below.

Active and Inactive Gamers Alike can Play City of Heroes October 8 through 11 and Gain Experience and Levels Twice as Fast

The team at Paragon Studios is celebrating the recent launch of Issue 16: Power Spectrum with a free Reactivation and Double XP weekend. Beginning Thursday, October 8, all inactive accounts in good standing may log into City of Heroes and enjoy all that Powers Customization and Mission Architect have to offer, free of charge! Additionally, all participating Hero and Villain characters will receive double the experience points (XP), Influence, and Infamy for their accomplishments in game. Take advantage of this opportunity to level up your favorite Heroes and Villains twice as quickly as normal!

With the massive success of the user-generated content system, Mission Architect, which has resulted in more than 50,000 story arcs to play, as well as the upcoming Going Rogue expansion, now is a great time to play City of Heroes and see how it not only set the bar in character customization but offers the most customizable gameplay experience over any MMO of its kind.

If you or your friends haven't played in a while, visit for all the latest game news. Download the PC game client or the Mac game client to play.

City of Heroes: Architect Edition is also available in stores and online via Steam® now! Get the complete game in one easy-to-install package.
Posted Thu, Sep 17 2009 3:32 PM
A lot has been brewing in Paragon City and the Rogue Isles for the past few weeks, so let's round up the latest updates.

First and foremost, Issue 16: Power Spectrum has released! This latest free update to the game world brings the ability to add colors to your powers and adding new sidekick mechanics.

Also, NCsoft is brewing the second ever Hero-Con is coming up! It'll take place October 25 and 26 in San Jose, CA. A perk of attendance? The new Praetorian Clockwork Outfit.

Next, guest authors have been creating content for the Architect system including Rooster Teeth and Scott Kurtz. Give these missions a spin!
Posted Fri, Aug 21 2009 4:06 PM
Ever wanted to play two months of City of Heroes for 37% off the usual price?

Well right now, is offering a crazy good deal on PlayNC 60-Day time cards.

They're currently going for $18.90. So grab 'em while you can.
Posted Fri, Aug 7 2009 11:45 AM
Issue 16: Powers Spectrum is slowly making its way towards players.

On the topic, MMORPG has an interview with Matt Miller (Positron) about the cool new features involved in creating powers.

This new level of customization should really add to an already robust system and intriguing game world.
Posted Fri, Jul 31 2009 10:49 AM
All of you burgeoning heroes and villains better log on.

City of Heroes/Villains Double XP has just started and runs through Sunday night at 9pm Pacific.

Twice the experience definitely doesn't hurt, so strap on your tights and head over.

Official announcement.
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