Yes, in some of the saddest news to hit the blogosphere in some time, seminal, genre-breaking MMORPG City of Heroes is shutting down.
For many people, City of Heroes was their first MMO, or the first they tried that they stuck with. It innovated in many ways, and will remain one of the most noteworthy elements of MMO history for many reasons, including its non-fantasy-based background.
Bloggers around the world are looking back at their time in CoH:
- For The Straw Fellow, CoH’s demise will leave a void that’s hard to fill – “What I am left with is a profound sense that no part of my life is sacred from the feeling of loss. Online games used to be my refuge, and now I am acutely aware that this ground is not safe either.”
- Sente has collected the reactions from both players and CoH staff on the forums and elsewhere – “There was a lot of talk around the shut down announcement of course, a bit of sadness, bitterness but also a lot of “let’s make the most of it while we can”.”
- Unsubject considers the economics of the shut-down, both debunking rumours that the shutdown is due to licensing issues and taking a broad, detailed and graph-filled look at the overall economics of the shutdown – “NCsoft is under a degree of financial stress and Paragon Studios hasn’t been able to deliver increased revenues despite a lot of extra investment in CoH/V. So it becomes an easier decision to shut things down and reallocate NCsoft’s cash elsewhere.”
- Zoso memorialises City of Heroes in verse – ” It got me into this whole business and set a bar that even now some games limbo under rather than superjumping over, with features like flexible group sizes, sidekicking to play with friends, character customisation.”
- Jeromai has bittersweet feelings about the death of CoH – which he mourned for some time before it was closed – “What I miss, and still do, are the old days of City of Heroes. When people got lost in Perez Park trying to reach the Hydras, whose xp had not yet been nerfed. When folks made teams on a regular basis and fought as a concerted synergistic whole. When the community helped each other and gave each other random gifts of influence because we were heroes.”
- Ardwulf looks at the closure, and comes out less than impressed with NCSoft’s attitude to its games – “Business is business. But the lesson for gamers should be clear: If you like any of NCSoft’s games, don’t get too attached”
- Moxie takes a screenshot-filled look back at her time in City of Heroes – “At that point the only online “game” I was playing was Neopets (for real!), but that night I watched as he configured the character creator for an hour before ending up with his character, a Storm/Illusion controller named Spector Storm.”
- And Syp closes out the day with an eloquent eulogy, which touches both on the bad points of the situation (including NCSoft, again) and the good memories he has from CoH’s time – “City of Heroes was more than a character creator, however. It took familiar tropes into an unfamiliar universe, and sold us on the idea that superhero MMOs didn’t need Marvel or DC to be accessible and fun.”
City of Heroes is a piece of MMO history, and will be greatly missed.
On a side note, I’m surprised that I haven’t heard of a community server emulator effort yet. Anyone know if there’s a project out there to make CoH live on?
Did you play City of Heroes? How do you feel about its closure?