Praetoria, which has been designed from the ground up to make use of Ultra Mode, was created after Emperor Cole defeated Hamidon and returned from the war.. Emperor Cole designed the city of Praetoria with a utopian ideal in mind, and the city will consist of four zones:
- Nova Praetoria: This zone is where Cole;s base of operations is located and where he and his Praetor senators conduct their daily activities.
- Imperial City: Melissa Bianco described this zone as"homage to parts of New York."
- Neutrapolis: A technological area, where you'll meet Neuron.
- The Underground: A zone that players have apparently already seen.
Going Rogue's new enemy groups were then shown off, including the previously seen Praetorian Police Dept, the thought-reading Seers, the Resistance, and the Praetorian Clockwork. A new red skinned, tattooed enemy group was also teased, and I really mean teased. We weren't shown anything but a single slide of concept art. So we'll just have to wait a bit longer.
The main feature of Going Rogue is of course the Going Rogue system, which allows players to switch allegiances (back and forth) from hero to villain, though the process is gradual. Heroes fall gradually from grace as a Vigilante, eventually becoming a Villain. Villains must redeem themselves as a Han Solo-esque rogue, looking out for themselves though still possessing a heart of gold.
The fun really begins at this point, and Matt begins talking about Going Rogue's powersets, including the Dual Pistols powerset that pre-order customers have already been enjoying for the past month. Demon Summoning is then shown off for the first time, and we are treated to a short trailer featuring the bull-horned demons of the powerset as well as the green hellfire whips that will be at the mastermind's personal disposal.
Not content to stop here, Matt Miller announces that Going Rogue will also include an additional two new powersets, one of which is decidedly not clown summoning. The first set revealed was Kinetic Melee, a new melee powerset available to all the melee archetypes in the game (stalkers, brutes, tanks, scrappers) that was described as a "very physical, punch based powerset." Something sure to please City of Heroes fans who have been asking for just that for some time now. Kinetic Melee is quite flashy and incorporates a bit more range than your typical melee set. Similar to Super Strength, Kinetic Melee will also feature many knock effects. A short trailer featuring Kinetic Melee was also shown off, and we should have some shakycam of it here at MMORPG.com very shortly!
Electric Control was also announced. The new control set will be available to both Controllers and Dominators, and works pretty much just as it sounds. Players have been asking for this one for a while now, especially since it's easy to imagine the types of powers that would be involved in such a set, given that most of the electric powers currently present in the game feature a number of control effects. Gremlins are included, by the way.
Players were expecting to hear more on the super secret "endgame system" that Matt and the team have been working on for some time at the panel, and Matt didn't disappoint. The endgame system bears a familiar name, it will be called the "Incarnate" system and players will get a taste of it in Going Rogue, though its full release is to be the main feature of Issue 19, which has been appropriately named "Incarnates" for the moment. We're told the name may be changing, however.
Incarnates will allow level capped characters to further develop their heroes or villains through a series of Incarnate levels. Going Rogue will feature a single teaser level for players to unlock, with the cap to be raised to a full 10 levels with the launch of Issue 19. The Incarnate system will allow players to earn special abilities and rewards for their characters, the latter of which is to be commensurate with the difficulty of the content tackled. Incarnate content will take place exclusively in Praetoria, and will also include new zone events. Matt wouldn't elaborate on either the abilities or rewards, but Incarnates seem to draw from mythology as Statesman (who is an Incarnate) has access to Zeus' lightning as part of his abilities. Going Rogue will be required to participate in the Incarnate content, though judging by the crowd's reaction, this shouldn't be an issue.
Stay tuned later in the week for our interview with City of Heroes Design Lead Melissa "War Witch" Bianco!