Double XP AND Account Reactivation Weekend

A few weeks ago a Chronicle reader asked if there would be an Account Reactivation weekend for City of Heroes following the release of Issue 16.

Well now I can say... YES!

City of Heroes has announced their Double XP/Account Reactivation Weekend set from Thursday, October 8th (8:59 a.m. Pacific Time) to Sunday, October 11th (11:59 p.m. Pacific Time). All heroes and villains active during that time will receive DOUBLE their experience and influence/infamy than normal when going through missions or just dishing out comeuppances.

PLUS, any inactive accounts in good standing will ALSO have access to Paragon City and the Rogue Isles during that time. If you haven't been in the Paraverse in a while... maybe trudging in some OTHER cartoonish universe that shall go unmentioned... now is the time to see the changes made, including the power customization and super-sidekicking features. (Just remember to take the time needed to install the updated software.)


i16 The REAL Video

My friend Michelle/Dark Respite/Samuraiko is back in the video business just in time to show off Issue 16!

SHE KNOWS how to promote an Issue release!

Now let's compare that to the "official" video...

It's splashy, but a little vague. Michelle still wins hands-down!


And now ISSUE 16!

Issue 16: Power Spectrum is now LIVE.

On the onset, the changes made may seem to be minor, but Issue 16 gives the heroes and villains something that they have been wanting for YEARS now... the ability to customize the look of their powers!

Previously the only kind of customization was through invention enhancements, which only modified the attributes of the powers you had, not the power itself. But you were still locked into whatever kind of animation and colors were provided.

Issue 16 now gives players the ability to customize the look of the powers, not just in terms of color tinting but also (to some extent) the animation used in using those powers. You can customize EACH power individually, giving a unique look using shades and textures, or simply leave everything in default and tweak it all later. Plus some of the physical powers (super-strength, martial arts) have alternate animations, so you're not always kicking or punching.

This is possible thanks to the NEW Character Creator engine which not only includes the customization feature, but also the ability to skip through each stage of a creation set instead of having to progress from one stage to the next and then backtrack to change something.

Want to change a power? Just click back to the tab you want to change without losing any information. (Note: the tabs look different now than in the screen image above.)

The important thing to note here, though, is this customization is not just per character, but also PER COSTUME. That means that those with more than one costume slot can now modify EACH power and customize them as per their abilities.

For those of you who have been saving up those costume tokens, now's the time to use them!

Yes, you will be able to modify the look of your powers on the fly by visiting any tailor/facemaker, but it will still cost you.

That's not the ONLY thing that has changed here.

Powerset Proliferation

The cross-proliferation between hero and villain archetypes continues with the following new powers added to each archetype.

Plus the Power Pools (hero AND villain) have been balanced out, so those missing a fifth power now have one.

Sadly, the Epic archetypes get no love... again. Somewhere in the Paraverse a Kheldian hybrid and an Arachnos operative are both screaming in frustration.

Enhanced Difficulty Options

Now you can fine-tune how difficult you want your challenges to be. Want to take on a challenge for 8 all by yourself? Now you can.

Pet Persistence

If you have a "pet", they will now zone with you. This has been an annoying concept for masterminds as their lackeys kept on disappearing every time they changed zones. Now they WILL follow you to the gates of Hell.


Probably one of the better changes. No more mission level restrictions, no more restrictions on side-kicking or exemplars, and ALL members of a team are now at the level of the mission owner. Also, no more level restriction on hazard zones... EXCEPT for the PvP and Hamidon areas. Low-level heroes can now wander into the Hollows or Perez Park and get themselves killed quickly.

And finally...

E-Mail Options

Finally you can end the RMT Spam messages once and for all! You can adjust your message settings in the Options to only receive messages from friends and supergroup members, or to NOT accept emails at all. You can finally OPT OUT of emails!

Bear in mind that this is still PER-CHARACTER, so if you are an altaholic you will have to make this adjustment for every character you have.

The trick is to create a saved options file. Make the necessary adjustments in the options and then click "Save to file". This will create a text-based file that can be readily accessed. (Note: This will NOT include modifications to the window settings. Those are still individually modified.) Then when you log in with another character, just go to the options menu again and select "Load from file". The settings from that text file will then be applied to that character. Then click APPLY NOW to lock it in.

Quick Thoughts on Issue 16

On the onset, Issue 16 provides some much-needed Quality of Life changes to the game. Power customization is something that will take some getting used to. Fortunately, unlike the powersets themselves, you will NOT be locked into them, so you can change what you don't like. But they DO take some time to go through. Don't be in a rush to get everything you want. You CAN go back later on and tweak things.

You will find that the customization is limited. Some animations are included, but not all of them, and some color options are limited. I would really love to have a more of a "build-up" phase when it comes to the "sniper" powers. Also, I wish we could have made some changes to the mastermind pets. I would love to have an all-female mercenary team, or to change the robots used, or even to change the colors. Hopefully that kind customization will be in line for a future issue. I can see why they waited until they finished the creator engine to get this added in the first place.

The super-sidekicking mode is a great feature and really would be great given some of the unique teams my characters get involved in. Also kudos to the e-mail tweak. That should have been implemented a long time ago.

Sadly, no epic love, no 50's love, and no supergroup love. And that's really sad, because supergroup bases have really stagnated since they changed the prestige system and how base inventions are created. I would love to see A LOT more flexibility with base creation, including being able to subdivide room into multiple floors instead of having to artificially create them. I am getting tired of hearing from forum posters saying "dude, I talked with the developers as Blah-Blah-Blah-Con and they said that it just doesn't work that way"... well guess what? Power customization, email options, and super-sidekicking ALL once fell under the category of "it just doesn't work that way". If you can code it, IT CAN WORK THAT WAY!

Meantime, congrats to the developers for taking care of some of our serious wishlist items, and hopefully they will fix the bugs quickly so they can get to work on Issue 17.


i16: SOON!

The following message came yesterday from Nivine, one of the administrators in the forum:

Greetings Players,

Issue 16 is getting very close, and with issue 16 you will be getting a free respec! I know many of you like to save your free respec's in case you need them so please keep in mind that they do not stack.

If you are holding onto a free respec, use it or lose it!

This usually means that the release of the next issue is imminent. Pre-loading has already taken place, and Issue 16 has been in open beta since Mid-August.

Important things to note:

  • Issue 16 IS NOT "GOING ROGUE"!!! CoHGR is a separate game expansion and will not be released for a few more months. (It is speculated to be mid-November.)

  • The free respec given will not change your costume, body type, origin, archetype, or primary/secondary powers. It will only allow you to shuffle your designated primary/secondary powers. A fire melee powerset will still be a fire melee powerset. You still need to see a special "surgeon" or "body specialist" to change your costume and/or body type.

  • As with previous releases, no doubt there will be some bug fixes and some instability. Don't be in a rush to play with everything.
Stay tuned to the Chronicles as more information becomes available.


Episode 12: Aftermath

Did Major Catastrophe win? Did Captain Catastrophe do the unthinkable?

Once again, Episode 12 is too big to put on YouTube intact, so it has been broken up into two parts...

Episode 12a
Episode 12b


Episode Intermission

Funny thing happened on the way to Episode 12...

Actually it's not so funny. It's called writer's block. You get caught in a rut over how to end something and you can't get out without taking a step back, which is what I did.

And it occured to me that some of the people that were really enjoying my YouTube videos were SILENT about the cliffhanger of Episode 11! So I wanted to get them to watch Epsiode 11 if they hadn't yet so when they get to Episode 12 (and I was committed to putting that on YouTube one way or another) they would understand what was going on.

That led me to this little Intermission...

Did Major Catastrophe REALLY win? Find out in Episode 12!

Episode 11 - YouTube version is BACK!

Just to let you know I have found a way to get Episode 11: Supergroup Bases onto YouTube.

Obviously since I have the FULL version still on MySpace, I won't copy it over here, but I will put links up. Also, if you have annotations, I do have a link button between the two parts of Episode 11 that connect them, so once you get to the end of the first part you can click to see the rest of it.

Episode 11a

Episode 11b