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Reader Comments (21)

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 12:38PM Valdamar said

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The branching mission dialogues sound great, but I just find myself wishing they had taken another 6-12 months and made sure Praetoria had content for levels 1-50, or at least 1-40 like CoH's Paragon City and CoV's Rogue Isles did (and both of those got their L40-50 content in the following issue).

New L1-20 content is very much needed, especially to welcome new players into the game, but in existing CoH/V veteran players can be past L1-20 in a matter of 7-10 hours playing time if they take it sedately while solo - much faster grouped, or in an hour or less if you abuse fast-levelling techniques (I usually take several characters from L1 to L22 on double xp weekends, doing the usual story arcs, and it takes a couple of hours per character, solo or duo'd) - but the meat of the game is at L20-50, when you've got Stamina (to cure lowbie endurance issues), decent enhancements in your powers (either L25 SOs at L22, or IOs) and enough powers to make up an attack chain without much standing around waiting on cooldowns.

I'm also a little disappointed with 7 new costume sets. Nowadays the Devs seem obsessed with providing full sets of costumes, and sometimes the costume pieces only match the set they're from and don't mesh well with pieces from other sets (the recent Mutant Super-Booster was very much like that). I was hoping GR would be more like CoV - not that it would double the amount of available costume pieces like CoV did, but that it would offer an equivalent amount of pieces, and not just full sets but accessories too. But then I guess even if they had produced as many costume pieces as CoV had, nowadays they would withhold the best sets to put in Super-Boosters to raise more cash.

Don't get me wrong, I still love CoH and even though I'm not playing it much (I have a major Borderlands addiction atm!) I maintain my subscription so I can log in occasionally and support the best Dev team in the industry. So I'm still looking forward to GR, but I'm not as excited as I was a couple of months ago before as many details were revealed - I just don't think it's going to have as big an effect on the game as CoV did when it launched.

I just can't shake this suspicion that GR will be content-light in terms of missions/arcs (it only covers the first 20 levels) and I think PR-wise that could be disastrous for an MMO that has had tons of new systems in the last 2-3 years but hardly any new mission/arc content. If the intent is to bring in new people, more than to reward existing subscribers, then I hope that works for them - CoH is getting too long in the tooth to survive a disaster.

I do trust Melissa Bianco though - she makes awesome content and it's great to see her get the recognition she deserves, and under her tenure as lead I'm sure we'll be getting really high quality story content - I'm just not yet convinced we'll get enough of it, often enough, to keep enough existing subscribers happy/busy - we are a hard bunch to please!

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 12:50PM Haggs said

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I don't understand the complaints about GR's 1-20 content, even from people who burn through those levels fast. Isn't the reason that you zip through lower levels because you've played them a lot before? So now that you're getting new lower level content, why would you want to go through it as fast as you're going through the old content?

Just take it slow and enjoy the stories. And if you're leveling too fast, then you can turn off the XP and just play the missions for fun.
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 1:15PM Sam not Spam said

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Well, from the sounds of it? If you've got all these possibilities and actions following you, wouldn't there be far more replayability in the 1-20 GR provides than we see in COH today? Wouldn't there be more content as a result to cover the various choices you can make?

Besides - COV wasn't an expansion - it was a whole game that didn't require COH. GR is "just" an expansion meant to offer a new beginning area, which is consistent (albeit flip-flopped) with other expansions - most games only add to the end-game areas.
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 2:04PM Sente said

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You _can_ of course burn through the content very fast, but then you will be missing most of the work they put into it - note that she talks about "exploring a new world", not "new cool way to get early XP".

It is better and less risk to release an expansion with a partial level range coverage (which most MMO expansions do anyway). Waiting much longer to make a release may cause more players to go elsewhere and if people do not like what you have done, then much more time would have been wasted.

Also, a significant feature fo the expansion is the ability to switch sides, i.e. Hero->Vigilante->Villain or Villain->Rogue->Hero. For a single character you have more of the existing content that is possible to play than before, be it more missions through switching sides, or that you can play any of the archetypes on your favourite side.

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Posted: Jul 28th 2010 8:55AM Valdamar said

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I absolutely take my time enjoying stories, or at least I did for my first half dozen or so L50s until I'd experienced everything several times on both sides - maybe I didn't pay quite as much attention on my last dozen L50s - nowadays I pretty much play to explore new powersets more than to explore the storylines (which I know off by heart).

Even so, L1-20 doesn't last long in CoH - even on my first couple of times through it on both sides - the levelling is accelerated to make new players feel like they're achieving something right away, to get them hooked - every single MMO I have ever played has been like that - so I don't believe that they will have massively slowed down the levelling in GR. If they have then a lot of people will just do whichever content levels them fastest - both those who don't care about story, and eventually most people when GR's content is no longer fresh.

Also take into account that while Praetoria's zones are bigger, there are less of them and you'll probably be zoning/travelling a lot less than you did in CoH (just like L1-20 levelling in CoV is faster than CoH because you're not being sent across multiple zones for every newbie mission).

I mean do you honestly think they'd make new L1-20 content that was significantly slower than existing L1-20 content?
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 12:42PM Haggs said

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I'm excited about these new mission features, like the dialogue branching and the subterfuge stuff. I think it'll make the game's mission more interesting. Plus I always love to read everything in missions.

I'm very excited for Going Rogue!

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 1:42PM (Unverified) said

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I think it's a mistake to assume there will be no content added for levels over 20. As a starting zone, Praetoria is for 1-20, but they've stated several times elsewhere that once Paragon City and Rogue Isles characters reach level 20, they can travel to Praetoria and work on changing their alignment. Seems like that would require mid-game material, and maybe even some endgame material.

This is the first time I've ever seen GR called "just an expansion to offer a new beginning area" -- I don't think War Witch was saying that at all.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 3:59PM (Unverified) said

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"they've stated several times elsewhere that once Paragon City and Rogue Isles characters reach level 20, they can travel to Praetoria and work on changing their alignment"

The work on changing your alignment is done in Paragon City and Rogue isles. No one will be able to travel to Praetoria, even characters created there. Leaving is a one-way journey (at least until the next expansion).
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 9:33PM cyanpill said

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Dadams, you are wrong about traveling to Praetoria- infact at SDCC the devs were talking about having a portal in pocket D that would go straight to Praetoria. It'll just be a 1-20 zone, so if you are too high level you won't get contacts there.
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 5:00PM (Unverified) said

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I am so looking forward to this. With the customizable content, it will be great to move back and forth!!!

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 2:56PM Daemodand said

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I wish CoH well with GR. Too bad they aren't advertising, but I guess the vast majority of people who are going to buy it have already done so via pre-purchase. They're in full "preaching to the choir" mode.

Posted: Jul 28th 2010 8:58AM Valdamar said

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> "I definitely would like to see a TV spot advertising it like all those World of Warcraft ones.
No wonder World of Warcraft is the most popular P2P mmo with all the commercials they have."

The popularity came before the TV advertising though - you need to have a huge number of subscribers to get all the money coming in each month to be able to justify the huge expense of a TV advertising campaign. The reason WoW are advertising is because they've already pulled in most existing MMO players that want to try their game - now they're working on bringing in people who don't play MMOs, as that's where any new subscribers they get will come from.
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 4:06PM (Unverified) said

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I think what people like Valdamar are missing is that Going Rogue's new "branching missions" feature means that there is far more content than the typical 1-20 level range.

With 4 new powersets available and the ability to go either the Hero or Villain route (or somewhere in between with Rogue and Vigilante), that gives the new 1-20 content a ton more playability than the similar levels in either CoH or CoV.

Naturally I don't bother to read the text on familiar content, but I do on anything new. Witness the recent "Dark Mirror" issue where you fight new archvillians and even evil clones of your own character. Those strings of missions weren't a huge amount of content, but going through them a few times each (so I could experience the nuances of the different responses you could choose from) really gave me the feeling of experiencing City of Heroes all over again.

The Dark Mirror issue stuff really felt fresh, and that was working within the constraints of the current City of Heroes. With an all-new zone featuring completely new enemies and factions and the ability to make choices along the way? Yeah, I won't exactly be burning through that content.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 4:33PM Daemodand said

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Rage on a Boss was keyboard-smashingly frustrating. That was a very bad precedent the AE set that was then allowed to leak through into official content. That's part of what soured me on the game. If official content is going to look like AE content (in all its nerdrage-inducing glory), count me out.

Bonus question: why do AE authors like sappers so much? And 'nades?
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Posted: Jul 28th 2010 9:10AM Valdamar said

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> "Bonus question: why do AE authors like sappers so much? And 'nades?"

A lot of people like the challenge of fighting Malta - I know I do - but then Malta are a lot harder on some of my characters than others. I have characters that find Circle of Thorns easy, and others that struggle with them - that's the joy of CoH - every new character you make requires a different approach to the game depending on their archetype and powersets - and that is what keeps the game fresh for me, more than the missions themselves.

But speaking as someone who has had their AE arc picked as a Dev Choice I can tell you it's really hard to pitch difficulty in an AE arc - pitch it just right for a solo corruptor and you'll get teams or solo brutes saying it was too easy, an empathy defender who tried to solo it saying it's the hardest content they've ever tried, and someone with powersets that don't work well on the mobs you picked to use telling you that you're a complete moron for making your arc impossible to complete.

Heck, I've had around 50 feedback comments on my Dev Choice arc and they range from several people telling me its the best arc they've ever played, to people calling me a moron for making it too hard, or too easy, or too dark, or too heroic, or ruining the horror atmosphere with humour, or ruining the fun atmosphere with too much drama, or writing mission briefings that were too long, or creating custom NPCs that were too easy, or creating custom NPCs that were impossible to kill, etc etc. It was a valuable lesson for me that "you can't please all of the people all of the time, so you shouldn't even try". The Dev Dr Aeon and all the people who 5-starred me liked my arc and that's good enough for me.
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 5:03PM (Unverified) said

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I definitely don't use any sappers in my AE missions, in fact, I try to avoid holds/stuns so that chars with no status protection can still play (plus adding allies)

Posted: Jul 28th 2010 12:32AM (Unverified) said

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The 1 - 20 content in GR will be supplemented by the 'tip' mission system which spans levels 20 - 50.

That system is a way of randomly getting side missions and arcs which lead to pivotal alignment switching missions to change your hero/villain into rogues and vigilantes before completely turning them into their opposites.

So content is coming for all levels. The pivotal alignment shifting missions will only be available to people who own GR.

Posted: Jul 28th 2010 8:54AM Snichy said

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I have only just started playing the game through the trial and love it, especially in ultra mode, so am quite new to this. One question: Does the existing 1-20 content disappear once the expansion comes out or do you have a choice of doing the original content then starting a new character and choosing to do the new added 1-20 content?

Posted: Jul 28th 2010 9:21AM Valdamar said

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The old content is staying - the Devs have only removed content a couple of times inthe life of the game and there was such an uproar that I doubt they will do that again - even when they revamp old zones nowadays they tend to keep any old missions that were there (like with The Hollows).

Even if they did have to retire some story arcs, that no longer made sense in the world, chances are they would add the old content to Ouroboros so that people could still experience it for nostalgia's sake.

Basically post-GR you'll have 3 choices at character creation:

1) create a Praetorian (using any of the 10 non-epic hero/villain archetypes), start in Praetoria, and work your way up to choosing whether you'll be a hero or villain (Resistance or Loyalist) at L20, at which point you'll go to either Paragon City of the Rogue Isles (depending on the choice you made).

2) create a hero (from any of the 5 hero archetypes, or either of the 2 Kheldian epic archetypes if you've previously got another character to L20) and start in either Atlas Park or Galaxy City (which are both Paragon City zones), like you can now.

3) create a villain (from any of the 5 villain archetypes, or either of the 2 Arachnos epic archetypes if you've previously got another character to L20) and start in Mercy Island in the Rogue Isles, like you can now.
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Posted: Jul 28th 2010 9:36AM Snichy said

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Thats great, thanks for the information, very helpful.
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