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City Of Heroes

Platform(s): PC
Genre: Online Multiplayer
Publisher: NCSoft
Developer: Cryptic Studios
Release Date: April 27, 2004 (US), Feb. 4, 2005 (EU)

About Rainier

PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!


'City of Heroes' Issue 16: Power Spectrum - More Details & Screens

by Rainier on Aug. 13, 2009 @ 11:22 a.m. PDT

City of Heroes is a superhero themed MMORPG that offers a host of gameplay features, allowing you to create your own heroes, band together with others to fight evil, build your own secret HQ and strive to become the premiere hero group in the city.

City of Heroes brings the comic book world alive in a massively multiplayer 3D online universe. Build your own unique super-powered hero or villain from millions of possible character combinations and venture into Paragon City or the Rogue Isles to live out your comic-inspired fantasies, and even create your own missions!

City of Heroes is developed by Paragon Studios, NCsoft’s internal development studio based in Mountain View, California. The team at Paragon continues to lead the comic book-inspired MMO genre. Through their creativity, passion, and their relationship with the game’s community, Paragon Studios empowers their players with game features and systems offering an unparalleled level of customization.

Paragon Studios announced their next major content update, Issue 16: Power Spectrum, which will allow players to customize their powers! It also involves a really nice update to their award-winning and genre-defining character creator, as well as more powerset proliferation options. Powers customization is the longest requested feature that players have wanted and they are going to get it this fall!

Powerset Proliferation – Powers Customization in Issue 16

For Issue 16: Power Spectrum, we wanted to proliferate more powersets; at least one per archetype.  In looking at which sets to shift around, there were a number of considerations that had to be examined.  There wasn't a specific rule, it was more the circumstances of development which really guided the decisions.  As the art team was busy with Powerset Customization, we tried to stay away from sets that required too much animation or FX work.  We also wanted to fill in matching Themes where we could, like with adding Assault Rifle and Traps to Defenders. In other instances we wanted to fill in highly requested options, such as adding Claws to Brutes.  In the end though, there are just far too many aspects to cover individually, but I’d definitely like to highlight some examples.

Tanker & Scrapper: Electric Armor and Electric Melee

The original plan was just to proliferate Electric Armor and to use this opportunity to make some survivability adjustments to the set at the same time. To that end, we renamed "Conserve Power" to "Energize" and added a small self heal and short duration regeneration buff to the power.  During testing, we realized that Energize came too late in the lifetime of a character to truly be useful, so for the new versions of the powerset, we swapped the progression of Lightning Reflexes and Energize (Brutes and Stalkers do not get this advantage, unfortunately).  Ultimately, we decided that we really wanted a thematic match for Electric Armor on the attack side of the fence, and added Electric Melee to the mix as well.

Dominator: Earth Assault

Earth Assault began life as a training exercise for Jonathan "Sunstorm" Courney.  Shortly after he began working here, he decided to build a new assault set for Dominators in order to help familiarize himself with the powers system.  He spent some time picking the powers, dreaming up new ones and testing them, and in general just doing some really innovative and crazy things with them.  After a while, he decided to take his test bed and turn it into something that could be released to the fans.  This led to a lot of rebalancing, rebuilding, and when he was finally satisfied with it, he pitched it to me.  Although it’s taken awhile for it to be implemented, we’re happy that we’re finally able to include it with Issue 16. 
   Earth Assault, like other Assault sets, combines a good mix of Ranged and Melee powers.  It has a healthy dose of soft control, good damage, and with Mud Pots – one of the best Damage Auras available.

Earth Assault:
1          Stone Spears
2          Stone Mallet
4          Tremor
10         Hurl Boulder
16         Power Boost
20         Heavy mallet
28         Seismic Smash
35         Mud Pots
38         Fissure

Additionally, we also conducted a mini-proliferation pass on the Ancillary and Patron Power Pools, adding 5th powers to most Pools and adding Blaze Mastery for Scrappers.  This has been something which people have been asking for since Fire primaries and secondary’s were given to them. 

We hope that all these new powersets and combinations will provide our players with even more ways to enjoy Paragon City and the Rogue Isles so Go!  Hunt!  Kill Skulls!

- Floyd Grubb – Senior Designer

Coming Up:

  • Powers Customization: Coming this fall with the release of Issue 16: Power Spectrum, players will be able to customize the powers they use, one of the most requested features from the City of Heroes community!
  • Going Rogue: This upcoming paid expansion brings a whole new dimension to online gameplay, by allowing players to walk the line between good and evil, or cross it.


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