With City of Heroes already tapping the super hero market and DC Universe Online soon to come, will Champions Online have some stiff competition? MTV Multiplayer's Tracey John poses this question to Champions Design Director Bill Roper who seems to think there is enough to go around for everyone!
MTV Multiplayer: Hows the console development coming for Champions Online?
Bill Roper: Weve got it running on Xbox . But to a degree, it comes down more to the business side stuff. Theres no technology-based reasons we couldnt be playing [PC] at the same time with Xbox right now. We definitely want to be on consoles. Its easier to move to Xbox than PS3, but we would love to be on as many places as possible. I think that consoles are ripe for a good MMO, just in general. And then superheroes, the genre is just doing so well.
Its just going to be getting the license Obviously, we [Cryptic Studios] were just acquired by Atari. So that changes all the publisher relationships and the distributing. So on our end, were just like, Great, well make it for whoever we get to make it for, and hopefully thats everybody.
MTV Multiplayer: I dont want to beat a dead horse, how do you feel about but competing with City of Heroes and DC Universe Online coming up? Can multiple superhero MMOs co-exist and thrive? Because its questionable right now whether fantasy ones can.
Roper: I think it can. I mean, multiple MMOs have evolved and different genres exist. I think that the huge upside is that MMOs are more popular than ever and the superhero genre is more popular than ever. Were coming out in the spring. We dont really know when DC is coming out, unless you believe the rumors on the web or not, but theyve neither confirmed nor denied a release date. And City of has been out for a long time. So I think were in a great window to get out there where people want to try a new superhero MMO but they dont know how long theyre going to have to wait for whatevers next.
And I love the fact that everything were doing is based off the four-color concept, the artwork, the flavor, the powers, the fact you can build anything you think of. I think Its really unique when compared to the City of games or what DC is doing. Trying to make a classless type system, one where you can choose an archetype if you want but if you have in your head, I want to make this cool power-armored electricity guy who flys but also have force powers. OK, great; you can do that. But I want to use white beams instead of yellow beams. I want it to come from my chest and not my head. Great. Were going to give you as many tools as we can to make exactly what is it you want to play.
MTV Multiplayer: How do you feel about the MMO landscape right now?
Roper: Its really good. I think that everybody has to be glad that there are so many more players in the MMO space now. Its gotten very competitive much more now than before.
I think well see that MMOs actually getting onto the consoles is going to be really positive, and that we can get in front of more players, different players than on the PC. And the PC market is still huge for MMOs. I just think its a better and better time for the MMO space. And its something that people are realizing that its such an incredible value, even in tougher economic times.
I think video games in general are a really good value, but I think MMOs are the king of that. Its a good relationship between developer and player, too. Its like,What do you guys want? OK, well make more of that. And if I want to go see a movie, itll be 10 or 15 dollars. Well, I could pay for a whole month to play an MMO, where I can chat with my friends, hang out and be more social than just I went and saw one film this month. People are staying closer to home, theyre looking for better values. I think MMOs give them all of that, which is pretty cool.
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