Why make another super hero game? A question we often pondered here at TVGB ever since Cryptic broke off from NCSoft and announced this project despite City of Heroes still being a dominate force. Why make another super hero MMO when a solid one already exists? What will this game bring that will pull players away from the already established City of Heroes? What is new, what will set this game apart from its predecessor? These are questions Jack Emmert, the head of Cryptic, begins to answer over at the official devblog at Massively.
The short answer to the “why” portion of the question is simply that they are able to do things now that they couldn’t do before. Emmert explains, “After we completed City of Heroes, we felt that we’d accomplished a lot, but we found that we had missed some really good opportunities. Fans immediately began requesting features that we simply couldn’t deliver because of the way we had architected (SIC) the game.” Some of those features include the ability to customize your spells and attacks, and also the ability to create a nemesis for you character. Both of these are now major features in Champions Online.
Emmert also touches on the fact that the technology has improved from 5 years ago, allowing them do more things with the art, make the gameplay more action oriented and take the game out of the city and into new backdrops. “Champions has its own urban setting, Millennium City, but players also travel to the windswept deserts of the Southwest, the steaming jungles of Monster Island, the frozen reaches of Canada and even the depths of the underwater realm Lemuria.”
He briefly talks about one of the major differences of City of Heroes and Champions Online, one being the fact that Champions Online will also be a console game which is traditionally uncharted territory for the MMO genre. “…but we believe that consoles are the next logical step for MMOs. And what better game to trailblaze on the console than Champions Online?” This is perhaps the most important difference. If World of Warcraft is any indicator, people like MMOs. A lot. And bringing a much improved version of one of the most solid MMOs in the genre to the console world could expand the player base quite a bit when compared to its predecessor City of Heroes.