Dark or Light

City of Heroes Preview

Richard Cox Posted:
Previews 0

Take a moment to think back to when you were just a kid. There are bound to be several memories from when you were three or four; memories of you running around with a towel or pillowcase tied around your neck pretending it was a cape. Running around, pretending you had superpowers, chasing your arch-nemesis, also known as your younger brother and his sidekick the family dog; you were the greatest superhero in the world. Absolutely nothing in the world could stop you, except for the fatal calls of "Bath Time!" from your mom. Fast forward a couple years and there are bound to be many memories of lazy afternoons reading your favorite comics and playing with action figures representing your favorite superheroes from said comics. Or maybe you were pretending to be the Justice League or the X-Men with the other neighborhood kids. Many of us have grown up so fully immersed in the superhero world; toys, comics, cartoons and TV shows. Now that we are older, but still very much kids at heart, we have moved on to other things, video games in particular. Now wouldn't it be great if we could combine those great times from when we were little kids pretending to be superheroes with the great times of this day and age playing MMORPGs?

Well good news, in the upcoming game City of Heroes by Cryptic Studios you can. They've taken the superhero world that we all remember and love and combined it with the MMORPG genre we've recently become huge fans of. All the great powers and abilities we grew up reading about in the comics and watching on the shows are there; invisibility, flying, super-strength, invulnerability and even elemental control. With five Archetypes, five different Origins and just about every superhero power you could possibly imagine it should not be hard at all to create any type of superhero that your heart desires. Wanna be an eight foot tall half insect, half human flying and electricity manipulating mutant? You can do that. How would you like to be an armored suit wearing technology based energy blasting vigilante? Go for it! How about a four foot tall male using Super Strength and having Stone Skin Armor wearing hot pink tights with neon green tiger stripes? Yes, you can even do that. The number of combinations of powers, abilities and costumes in City of Heroes is near limitless.

The graphics in City of Heroes are quite nice and definitely lead to the feeling that it is a superhero world. Paragon City is huge and beautifully done; towering skyscrapers and gigantic statues of past heroes are all over the city. The view from the top of some of the tallest skyscrapers is absolutely amazing. You can easily see across the entire city from the tops of a lot of the skyscrapers and looking down from the edge there is an actual sense of height. The vehicles and people down below you look like a bunch of tiny ants scurrying about town. Character animations are smooth and well done. They definitely have the look and feel of a superhero, the punches and kicks are big and sweeping and the blasts and other powers are awe-inspiring. At times you almost expect to see a huge jagged text bubble pop up that says "KAPOW" or "ZAP" or "BOOM" in it like the old comics and TV shows. Overall the graphics are very nicely done but not to the point where they seem excessive and cause undue lag. Even in a large battle between a group of five players and about ten to fifteen enemies with all the bells and whistles on there was no noticeable lag.


Richard Cox