Author Topic: Voices  (Read 20349 times)

Terwyn

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Voices
« on: October 21, 2012, 06:27:17 PM »
I'm working on something to post to my blog regarding City of Heroes, its history, and its future.

I'd like players to provide a paragraph detailing why they play, so that I can tie it all together with the general point of the post.

Since I'd intended the blog as being largely tied to literature and technology, Paragon City seems like a seemless blend of the two major aspects I want to deal with, and I hope to start it off with something extremely important.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
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Tubbius

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Re: Voices
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2012, 10:28:30 PM »
Why do I play City of Heroes?  I've been at the game for the past four years (having started September 21, 2008), paying for full year stints in advance.  In part, it's been stress relief from work--a chance to unwind after teaching all week.  In part, it's also something that my girlfriend and I have in common and enjoy doing together.  In part, it's a chance to do all that fun superheroic stuff that I've only been able to dream of in my head with many other superhero paper and dice RPGs of the past; the immense amount of customization available to the player of City of Heroes was what got me into the game, enabling me to try all manner of fun creations over the years.  However, despite all the above, being able to spend time with the many friends I've met playing those creations is perhaps the chief reason I've continued playing to the present.

Rotten Luck

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Re: Voices
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2012, 11:52:32 PM »
When I started City of Villain just came out.  I got the Good vs. Evil edition.  It was just a game for me then.  I live in an area where going out isn't easy, add to that I'm phobic of crowds 4 or more people around me and I'm uncomfortable, a club level of population and i'm in panic mode.  Then City of Heroes got in me deeper then any game before.  So many ways to make a new character I could see my creations rendered if not fully very close to what I had in mind.  thought in game I still tend to run solo I interact with others.  I made friends and even met a girlfriend (thought we broke up later).  What I want to save isn't a 8 year-old game, it's the lore, the experience, the franchise, and most importantly the community.  All those will be lost when the servers go dark, and yes I have gone and tried out the other Superhero games.  It's not the same like trying to sleep in a strange bed. 
One way or another... Heroes will fly again!

Turjan

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Re: Voices
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2012, 12:33:13 AM »
I play City of Heroes because it's a place where dreams can come alive. Every character I create can have a unique appearance, and I can give each its own individual backstory telling where it's from and how it gained its superpowers. City of Heroes is a world full of such unique individuals, each hero or villain a work of creative art in its own right. And that's before the 'game' proper has even started for that character! For me, above all else, City of Heroes is a playground for the imagination. It is a place where co-operation reigns supreme, where different skills need to come together in order to triumph over adversity. It is nothing less than a testing ground for the human spirit. And I play because I believe that dreams are what define humanity, and the dreams of today can become the reality of tomorrow. The motto of Paragon City is the "Birthplace of Tomorrow", and so it is. Countless dreams have been born there over the past eight years. Paragon City may die, but those dreams can never be killed.

The_Rottweiler

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Re: Voices
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2012, 12:34:23 AM »
I've been a part of City of Heroes since 2003. Pre-beta.

I'm a geek; lover of RPGs, sci-fi, comics, wrestling, you name it. The very concept of this game -- the very possibility it would exist -- was so exciting. The forums were buzzing with so much creativity. Heroes were born, relationships formed, and stories unfolded, spreading from thread to thread like a wildfire. In our hearts and minds, this world was already as big as Marvel and DC before we saw one pixel of Paragon City. I think a huge factor in the development and success of the game was that Cryptic (and later Paragon) Studios heard us and felt the same way... they were just as excited and in love with the concept of that world.

The only way I can describe my first experience of walking the streets of Paragon City is to say it was my teen pen-and-paper days all over again.

...oh, and I. GOT. TO. FLY. Circling around skycrapers! The first moment I dropped down in the middle of a group of Skulls and cleared them out in a flurry of punches... I don't think it ever got old. It was that stupid Real Life thing that pulled me away from the game. I still stayed in touch with my teammates. They became a family of sorts. I never got that from Everquest -- or any other game before or since. Hell, here it is nearly 10 years later! I still keep in touch with a bunch of the guys I build these characters with pre-Beta, even after a few months on, then off, then repeat.

Victoria Victrix

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Re: Voices
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2012, 12:57:06 AM »
I live out in the country, 20 miles from the nearest small town.  Needless to say, as a liberal female fantasy writer I don't have much in common with my neighbors.  My best friend only has internet at work and does not have chat.  Other friends and collaborators don't have chat at all, or have limited internet.  Virtually 90% of my contact with the rest of the human race comes via the acquaintances I have made in CoH.  I do have some people I consider very good friends, some of whom are also collaborators, who have not vanished completely as they leave City, but they are much, much younger than I am (I am 62) and have lives outside of work.  Often I do not talk to them for as much as a week at a time, and then it is only a few lines of chat.  All I have left now is my husband and my work.  I am feeling horribly alone and lonely now.

As a writer, I am deeply invested in my characters and their stories.  Some of them have made it on to professional prose, but writing is very hard work, and nothing like as immersive as the experience of playing their stories and reactions.  NCSoft is going to do something no one else ever has: completely destroy almost a hundred of my characters and stories.  Legally, that is not a criminal action.  But by all that is holy, it should be.
I will go down with this ship.  I won't put my hands up in surrender.  There will be no white flag above my door.  I'm in love, and always will be.  Dido

JWBullfrog

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Re: Voices
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2012, 03:10:50 AM »
Why do I play? If you had asked me that question six years ago I'm not sure I could have answered it. I was never much into video games, I had an ancient (for the time) computer, and I had much more important things that demanded my attention. Yet, there was...something... that kept bringing me back time and again. I now know what that something is.
 
I had the freedom to be whoever I wanted, do whatever I wanted to do, go wherever I wanted to go. I could leap tall buildings, I could fly, I could throw fire or control minds or defeat a dozen foes at once. I was, in short, a hero. I was the star of the greatest story in the world and, to make it even better, I found people who loved it as much as I did. I made friends with people from all corners of the planet.
 
Over the last six years, I've tried other games. Some were good, some were not, but none of them were home. Paragon City is my city, my home.
 
That is why I play.
As long as somebody keeps making up stories for it, the City isn't gone.

Samuraiko

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Re: Voices
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2012, 03:18:44 AM »
I play CITY OF HEROES because it allows me to express creativity in ways I'd not considered - and I've considered a LOT. Character biographies, costumes, stories, and videos - it has been an outlet for me in so many forms. It rescued me from writer's block and stifled creativity that was slowly killing my spirit. Not just that - it has been entertainment for my husband and me when we couldn't afford anything else. It has brought new friends into my life, both online and in the real world. It has helped me develop and further my professional skills as a writer and videographer. And it has allowed me to make people laugh, cry, cheer, and celebrate our game through the videos and stories I've created as a result.

COH is not just a game; for me, it's a way of life, and a way to LIVE.

Michelle
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Samuraiko/Dark_Respite
The game may be gone, but the videos are still here...
http://www.youtube.com/samuraiko
http://cohtube.blogspot.com

Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2012, 03:58:02 AM »
Obviously, I'm not going to attach any names to this unless I'm given permission, but I think that's enough. I should have a first draft done by tomorrow night.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

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Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2012, 02:09:15 AM »
« Last Edit: October 25, 2012, 05:54:33 PM by Terwyn »
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

http://missingworlds.wordpress.com

Turjan

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Re: Voices
« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2012, 01:50:04 PM »
Looks good :)

There is one thing though - this sentence :-
Quote
We have learned to excel at uniting against common threats, which is perhaps the strongest reason why our response to learning that our online home is going to be deactivated.
- seems incomplete. Feels to me like a few words there should be juggled around a bit, something like :-

"...which is perhaps the strongest reason why we responded as we did to the news that our online home is going to be deactivated."

Ironwolf

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Re: Voices
« Reply #11 on: October 25, 2012, 03:38:22 PM »
Or even:

In the game as super heroes we daily battle threats to our City and World. Is it any wonder we would respond in a positive and powerful way to yet another threat?

Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #12 on: October 25, 2012, 03:40:27 PM »
I dislike how truncating my own thoughts occasionally occurs. Thanks for catching that.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

http://missingworlds.wordpress.com

TimtheEnchanter

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Re: Voices
« Reply #13 on: October 25, 2012, 03:41:20 PM »
Or even:

In the game as super heroes we daily battle threats to our City and World. Is it any wonder we would respond in a positive and powerful way to yet another threat?

Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #14 on: October 25, 2012, 06:08:03 PM »
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

http://missingworlds.wordpress.com

Flashtoo

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Re: Voices
« Reply #15 on: October 25, 2012, 06:19:52 PM »
Why do I play City of Heroes:

There are a few interlocking reasons here. First, I've been playing games since childhood, and the games I favor are the ones that let you explore and - when video games started having that option - make your own character, and customize your experience, and are not focused on competing with other players. First-person shooters and arcade-style fighting games leave me cold. I devoured the Pokemon series, with its ample flexibility in party combinations and playstyle options, in my early teens. When I discovered BioWare, I latched right onto Knights of the Old Republic, especially the second one with its even greater depth of dialogue trees, individual character stories, and character build customization options, and held on well into other BioWare titles (I'm halfway through the first Dragon Age and loved the first and second Mass Effect games; still need to get my hands on Jade Empire). However, aside from City of Heroes, my great love in video games is, and remains, the Elder Scrolls, in particular Morrowind: while it looked interesting to me even on its own, once I discovered that it came with its own Construction Set and there was a whole community of people online who dedicated even more of their spare time to allowing the player to be exactly the character they wanted to be than they did to actually playing the game, I did nothing else for years. I'm still a part of that community, though I've become a little more scarce over the past couple of years, for one reason and one reason only: City of Heroes is better. Morrowind (and Skyrim, and I suppose even Oblivion) are all fantastic worlds to explore, in which you play exactly what you want to play - an aside; I played WoW for about twenty minutes before I got tired of being Orc Shaman #3,428, I mean, sure, I got to pick my own hair color and style and skin tone but any game that changes your avatar's outward appearance based on what equipment you're wearing only goes so far in terms of visual distinction if you can't add new equipment yourself - but The Elder Scrolls series comprises single-player games, which means that there is no ingame, real-time roleplay as the character you've dreamed up. The next best thing is tabletop RPGs; I've played a lot of D&D, Star Wars D20, and even tabletop Dragonball (which was far more amazing than I could have ever expected), but tabletop also lacks - there is a limited pool of players, sessions have to be set up and agreed upon ahead of time, meeting in person is inconvenient, rolling dice slows things down, etc., and there are also no visuals. To imagine is one thing, but to be shown is another thing entirely. This is the crux of what makes City of Heroes my most beloved video game title: My character, that I play with hundreds of other people, in real time, feels like my creation as I watch him fight evil using the powers that I have chosen for him.

The second reason, that I believe depends heavily on the first - I have Asperger's syndrome and it gives me severe social anxiety, and if not for this game, I would not have friends. It's much, much easier for me to understand the minds and motives of fictional characters than real people, so I gain relief from this anxiety when there's a safe curtain of fiction between me and whoever's on the other end, that I can pass through at my own pace. This works. Case in point: I just got back from a vacation in Mexico, on the Mayan Riviera, arranged by the co-leader of my SG. This kind of real friendship is not something that comes easily to me, and it only happened because of our RP together and later, our joint efforts to keep our SG running. The only other place that I can encounter this safety curtain is at conventions, and even then, it's neither as effective (conventions end, and people go home to unreachable places) nor anywhere near as affordable, not to mention a much greater expenditure of time and energy, which I can't sustain for long.

Lastly, Ms. Lackey has already said exactly what I feel, though I don't write professionally:

Quote
As a writer, I am deeply invested in my characters and their stories.  Some of them have made it on to professional prose, but writing is very hard work, and nothing like as immersive as the experience of playing their stories and reactions.  NCSoft is going to do something no one else ever has: completely destroy almost a hundred of my characters and stories.  Legally, that is not a criminal action.  But by all that is holy, it should be.

Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #16 on: October 25, 2012, 07:05:23 PM »
Sorry Plangkye, but I already have more than enough.

I'll see what I can do about fitting your voice in, but what you've written is much longer than what I need. Think you can trim it down significantly?

If not, you're more than welcome to post it as a comment.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2012, 07:19:59 PM by Terwyn »
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

http://missingworlds.wordpress.com

Rotten Luck

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Re: Voices
« Reply #17 on: October 25, 2012, 11:26:55 PM »
What you can't use Terwyn we can post in some kind of CoH memorial site.  Host these "Voices" as well as Screen shots and videos.
One way or another... Heroes will fly again!

Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2012, 12:05:31 AM »
I can't tell you how much I like that idea.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

http://missingworlds.wordpress.com

Terwyn

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Re: Voices
« Reply #19 on: October 26, 2012, 11:58:02 PM »
The second entry is being drafted, and with VV's kind permission, I will be reproducing not only her answers to some of my questions, but both of her letters to NCSoft.

It will be quite lengthy, and before posting it I will certainly share it here for feedback. Ammon, I would be exceedingly grateful if you assisted me in maximizing its SEO presence.
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
- Albert Einstein

http://missingworlds.wordpress.com