City of Titans interview – Sometimes they come back
If you’re a fan of superheroes and MMORPGs, chances are you have played Cryptic’s City of Heroes. The first game in the genre to let players become superheroes (and, later, supervillains) , CoH, as it was often referred to, was shut down by NCSoft last November, but during the eight years and a half of its story it gained a considerable following that was determined not to let go. This is the story of City of Titans, now cruising towards half a million dollars on Kickstarter, and the aptly named Missing Worlds Media.
Today we have Chris “Warcabbit” Hare with us to share some details about the game.
First of all, welcome to Worlds Factory. Please, describe briefly City of Titans to our readers!
Welcome to Titan City, a bustling metropolis on the Eastern Seaboard. It’s an exciting place, full of danger and opportunity. Do you want to protect it or rule it? The choice is yours. First Titan City, and then… the world!”
How does it feel to have surpassed your funding goal in such a short time on Kickstarter? Do you feel a lot of pressure from the community?
I feel a lot of pressure from myself. I feel in awe of the community. I committed myself to the best game possible a long time ago. I will deliver.
I understand that this project was born specifically to substitute City of Heroes for all those players who are still interested in a superhero game. That said, what changes and/or improvements are you looking to implement in City of Titans when compared to CoH?
Well, it’s ten years longer, ten years later, ten years more evolution.
We’re going to try to take the lessons in gameplay and design that other games have shown us, and some technical possibilities CoH could never pull off. But the hard part is not losing the heart.
Recently there seems to be a significant shift in the MMO genre towards the “sandbox” gameplay style. Do you intend to implement any sandbox elements in City of Titans, or will it be a straightforward “themepark” MMORPG?
The core of our game will be a “Themepark” ride, and it will be relatively easy for a new player to follow that all the way to the end.
But as they learn to play, and as they explore, more and more gameplay will open up to them, all the way to writing their own stories, making their own enemies to fight, designing their own maps, and running other people through them.”
Another trend is certainly that of action combat. Do you plan to follow the path of DC Universe Online/Champions Online, or do you still think that the so-called “TAB targeting” system is still valuable? In this case, how do you intend to spice it up?
This question is a lot trickier than it sounds.
We don’t want to lose the essential feel of City of Heroes, and that action combat system was one of the things most cited as something less than an improvement in Champions. There will be a number of evolutions of gameplay, and we’re going to go with what feels most right.
Being a superhero game, of course powers are going to play an important role. Will a single character be able to collect and use every power in the game, or are you going to enforce player dependency?
That’s a fun thought. Sadly, we’re not going the TSW route that far.
It does free us to make the individual powers more dramatic, though. And I’m really hoping we can provide a design-your-own-power to the experienced player.”
What about PvP? Will Heroes be able to make an impact on the world by defeating Villains (or viceversa)?
That might just be the topic of a later update.
For PvE, will you use a “dynamic events” system like Rift, Guild Wars 2 and other games? Also, will you have instanced “Raids” requiring many groups to band together?
I like calling them Public Quests. Best invention Warhammer Online gave to gaming.
They’re certainly planned. As well as when the enemies raid you. Zone Events… Well. As far as endgame, we’ve got some ideas, but we’re not going to nail them to the wall. Let’s just say we want to try to mimic every experience a superhero could encounter.
Do you plan to have player housing available at launch?
Bases. At, or extremely close to. It’s actually one of our hardest challenges, thanks to the engine. And we intend to do a few things with them that City of Heroes never did.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell our readers about City of Titans?
There are a thousand things. The problem is, every thing I say is a promise I have to keep. I’m keeping as many of them as I can. The core promise, though, is that you will feel larger than life when you play, and that you will feel your choices matter.
Thank you for your time and best of luck with the project!