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Reader Comments (11)

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 8:44PM CCon99 said

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They should have named it the Catgirl Pack or the Furry Pack! =-p

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 9:04PM Jeromai said

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The Feathers and Furry Pack!

The producer's letter is definitely more of what I'd like to see in CoH. Throw a carrot to appease the not-so-goshdanged-hardcore masses from time to time. Doesn't cost much beyond some words to describe what the devs are up to and a lot of marketing time to spin it properly. (Assuming a development cycle for additional features that at least sorta kinda works - in some other MMOs that crashed and burned, I was never really sure.)

Time will tell if the implementation matches up to the plan, but it's about time CoH ripped off open groups. :)

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 9:22PM The Ogre said

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Everything in the letter actually points to *no* accessibility for the endgame. At least not for those who can't commit to teams/hordes of 8-24 players for long periods of time (strangely enough, some people aren't willing to put the good of the group ahead of the good of their kids!).

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 9:36PM Altruist said

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@The Ogre

did you read the letter? 30minutes is the stated goal for these TFs, and the grouping system works like a single-server dungeon finder (you don't have to "work" to find a group, you just que up).

COH is probably the most casual-team friendly game i've ever played.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 10:01PM The Ogre said

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@Altruist

Yes, I did read every word. Any content you can't stop in the middle of to attend to real life matters is *NOT* accessable or casual-friendly.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 10:33PM Jeromai said

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@The Ogre
"About That Accessibility Thing
For our more casual players, we have added an option for you to continue to build your way up the Incarnate Tree by collecting Incarnate Shards without doing any Incarnate Trials--you will even get Incarnate Shards when you are exemplared down."

If that wasn't a nod and acknowledgement of the subset that cannot manage to commit 30-60 minutes of uninterrupted gameplay time, then I'm not sure what was. No need to touch the Incarnate Trials at all.
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Posted: Feb 10th 2011 3:25AM pcgneurotic said

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@The Ogre

I totally dig what you're saying - I've got a family that needs constant tweaking and adjustment too - but I have to say that in big groups, no one's ever noticed if I've gone afk briefly. Flashing lights, noise, explosions etc. Less than ten in your team and it's a problem though, sure.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 9:32PM Jeromai said

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I think it hinges on the implementation. I don't think 30 minutes is a long period of time. 60 minutes might be pushing it for some. 90 minutes would approach taxing/tedious for more. 2 hours would suck in terms of accessibility.

Similar to hamidon and mothership raids, the first few times as the population learns it will take a much longer time to figure out. Then it hopefully boil down to a good rhythm of 30-60min completions like most other max level activities in CoH. (I hadn't been to a Hamidon for a long time, but I popped by on Virtue recently and wow, was it ever smooth. 45 players in the zone, took all of 30 minutes to down his waves, and no hair-ripping frustration like *ahem* certain other unmentionable task forces.)

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 10:57PM Superfan said

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This new stuff sounds pretty cool but whenever CoH has told us something "BIG" is coming "SOON"...well...we've kinda been disappointed. This is, of course, my opinion.

Mission Architect is an awesome thing but it was all they really focused on for like a year. Then the follow up, maintaining etc. That system was way too much for the resulting product.

The next big deal was Going Rogue. A good product but it just gave us slight variations on what we have. Nothing big or new but the same.

The stuff they pump out is repetitive and the last good issue was i12. It has been a while since they have provided something fun to do that you like to do over and over. The ITF is a lot of fun and they haven't done anything to match it since.

I left the game when i19 hit and I don't think I will be back until at least I see what the heck they are talking about here.

If you're new to the game then the amount of stuff will be overwhelming in this game. Lots to do, ok graphics and great character creator. I just hope the devs get their collective heads out of their back ends and listen to the players.

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 11:21PM Luk said

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@Superfan
100% agree.
The last exciting thing that came out of COH was COV, everything else afterwards just did not measure up. Mission Architect was abused and became power levelling paradise that made doing regular mission obsolete.
Going Rogue did not bring enough "new" to the table. And then there is still these warehouse/lab/cargo hold/alien ship/cave maps that we all know by heart :) The TFs are still great though, if you can manage to get a good team for it.
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Posted: Feb 10th 2011 2:38PM Valdamar said

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I kinda have to agree with Superfan and Luk.

Personally, as a 5 year subscriber, my "golden age" for the game started with CoV's launch then went from I7 up to I12 - we got so much fun content and fun systems in those issues during that time: Grandville (I still think the arcs there and in RWZ are the best ever nade for the game), Faultline revamp, Rikti War Zone revamp, Hollows revamp, Ouroboros+Cimerora, inventions system, weapon customisation, flashback system, real numbers system, inspiration conversion, Dual Blades & Willpower, both VEATs, the start of powerset proliferation, new hairstyles, LRSF, STF, ITF, LGTF, Rikti invasions, Mothership and new Hamidon raids, Newspaper/Scanner+Mayhem/Safeguard missions, etc. - and all the lore work was laid down for the "Coming Storm" storyline... which is still coming and has barely been moved forward in over 2 years. And that's just what I can recall from memory - there was lots more quality of life stuff.

Even more astonishing, most of the time during I7-I12 all that great content was being put out by a CoH team of only 15 developers because Cryptic had pulled most of the CoH staff away to work on MUO (which became CO after Microsoft+Marvel pulled out of the deal - this was before CoH was sold fully to NCSoft so that Cryptic would have enough cash to buy the Champions IP and finish CO without publisher intervention) - and yet that team of 15 passionate developers (which included War Witch, Poistron, Back Alley Brawler and Castle), who elected to stay with CoH rather than move to the Marvel MMO, managed to produce better issues/content (imho) than we now get from a team of 60+ developers.

Since then it has just been hype hype hype, but very little payoff. Mission Architect (AE system) was superb in theory, with great implementation, but in practice most players would rather play Dev-created content - the nerfs to rewards just made it even more unpopular (a nerf was needed, though, if they were to avoid making AE the only way to play the game). But as a result of time spent on AE and adding to AE, then all of the new hires needing to be trained (team expanded to 60+ people), then most of the team working on GR, we got very little content during I13-I18 (even if you include GR) when compared to I7-I12, and a lot of the new content was made by new hires and really didn't match up to I6-I12 standards (although it's clear that CoV's high standards started with Striga and Croatoa in I3 and I5).

GR itself disappointed me, because while the game needed new newbie content, that was pretty much all GR delivered content-wise besides the side-switching system and the admittedly nice new powersets. Players have been crying out for more arcs and more task forces for a long time - more to do at all levels in groups both small and large (from solo up to 8 players) - CoH's scaleability has always been a major advantage in accommodating all playstyles. My first experience of GR was grouping with a friend to do the first mission after character creation and being told we could only do it solo.

Players have also been crying out for new tilesets to go with that new content - we spend most of our time inside mission/TF instances looking at the same old tilesets - the repetitive nature of the tilesets (with caves and warehouses tending to get the most hate) is the main reason stated for quitting CoH by most ex-players - we need more variety there.

Players have been crying out for new TFs too - it's the most popular group content and we want more TFs near the quality of the ITF, LGTF, STF and LRSF - yet now that we actually start getting more/new TFs they're all being tied to this new endgame system which not everyone wants to use (CoH has always encouraged playing alts - the new endgame system really doesn't).

And now most of the new costume content comes from boosters too, so we don't even get many free costume pieces in issues.

It just seems like we were better off in I7-I12, when Cryptic were mostly ignoring CoH (well, when Jack Emmert was ignoring CoH in favour of MUO/CO :p ) and just 15 passionate developers ran the game, than we are now with a huge team onboard and tons of extra funding from NCSoft.

I'll still stick with them cos CoH is still my favourite current MMO and I still trust the Dev Team - in particular now that Melissa "War Witch" Bianco is in charge she did promise us a focus on adding more mission content rather than adding more systems, so once the Incarnate system isn't totally dominating issue content I do hope for great things - but I still can't help comparing every issue they release to I7-I12 when the freem 15 were working miracles - since I13 Paragon Studios just haven't managed to measure up to that high standard as I think the new hires have just diluted what made the core of the Paragon Studios Dev Team truly great.

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