since our Champions Online
community site went live, the superhumans otherwise known as the Ten
Ton Hammer staff have been diligently putting together an excellent
collection of new
, but we also
understand that many potential players are interested in hearing more
about what type of high end content the game will feature. With that in
mind, we recently sat down with Bill Roper to discuss what types of
challenges await players with the Nemesis and Omega systems.
Ten Ton Hammer: You recently mentioned that the Nemesis system has
returned to the beta, and I know that some aspects have changed a bit
from when details first emerged last fall. Could you give our readers
an overview of some of the tweaking and polishing that went into the
system with the latest iteration?
: One of the big things
we did is we lowered it from level 30 to 25, so we had to build the
content to fit into those extra five levels. I think the biggest thing
is that Nemesis really has gotten a lot more detailed and almost even
cinematic in nature.
There are basically two types of missions you go on. One is what we
call ‘popcorn’ missions that just kind of pop up
anywhere. A lot of those would be ambushes, or you stumble across the
minions of your nemesis doing something. Those tend to be driven more
by the supporting cast that you build out for your nemesis.
Then there are also these challenge and showdown missions which are
linked together. They’re very thematic, story-driven and
hand-crafted to a very high degree. Within those there are a lot of
different variations because we really designed them for a high amount
of replayability. So certain missions you go on from challenges and
showdowns, for example, they always feature your nemesis, and
they’ll feature some of that supporting cast; not only the
ones you’ve designed as assigned minions but also different
villains that come up that are specific to the nemesis storyline that
may float through parts of that whole storyline.
There are different things you’ll find, or different
‘Easter eggs’ that open on different maps depending
on whether you’re going through solo, or whether
you’ve got three people in your team or there are five people
in your team. So there are chances for other things to happen on those
maps. This encourages players to make a ‘nemesis
When you go through and complete the storyline chain and arc that ends
with putting your nemesis in Stronghold, the supervillain prison, you
can then create another nemesis. It’s kind of like building
out your own villain gallery of the villains you’ve made.
Then as you go through another nemesis story arc it might have some of
the same stories or you might have some different challenges and
showdowns, but even if you get one that you’ve been on before
there are different things that can happen on the map because
there’s a lot of randomness inside of those maps.
So you might say, “Oh, I got this challenge or showdown again
but I did that solo last time. I’ll be sure to take a team
with me this time because I couldn’t get into that one area
before” or “I’ve heard that
there’s this cool thing that unlocks because I’ve
got five players” So different villains could show up and
that kind of stuff.
So a lot of it’s been putting that effort into having that
randomization within the system, and having really highly crafted
challenge and showdown stories that you’ll go through. I
think it’s very telling that when the Nemesis guys handed it
off to the sound and they saw some of the cinematic sequences
– the in-game cinematics that happen in the personal
storylines – they were like, “Oh man, these are
like little movies!” They were really blown away with just
how much work was put into them.
I’m really excited; I think the Nemesis challenges and
showdowns are going to be very challenging and engaging instances for
players. And the system itself is just so cool; I love the idea of
being able to create a villain and then show it off to people.
I think the last part then is that we wanted to devise a system that
was really fun, really engaging in and of itself at launch but then
also gives us a huge foundation to be able to create new content
post-launch. That’s part of the reason we want players to
build up their nemesis gallery, so then we can start doing things where
you have more than one nemesis so there can be new maps or missions
that use that. Or if we have multiple players going into a map that all
have nemeses we could do some things with that even, or whatever else
we can think of past that.
I’d love to be able to have nemeses randomly appearing in
other people’s missions. It would be cool to be fighting and
say, “Oh wow, here’s a villain!”
You’re used to fighting villains obviously but you know
it’s a nemesis because they don’t play like any
other villain in the game. So seeing that and then going,
“Wow, who was I fighting?” and somebody else says,
“Oh dude! That was my nemesis!” because they were
on your team or something.
So there’s a lot of different things we can do to make the
Nemesis system extensible in a lot of different ways moving
forward, but it was really important for us to have a really engaging
and engrossing system in when the game launches and I think
we’ve really accomplished that.