Mission Architect: City of Heroes

I had some time to kill the other day so I cranked up the old gaming rig and patched up City of Heroes to see how long it would take to whip out a custom mission.

Really, not that long.  After taking the grand tour, I pretty much dove straight in to the Mission Creator.  It’s pretty cool.  Setting up a story, and setting objectives is really simple.  You can also create your own enemy groups, with minions, lieutenants, bosses, elite bosses.  You can even create NPCs and the mission contact.

I whipped up a story about “transporter buffers” going amok after a “power surge.”  This if course, occurs in the Synergy Gestalt’s base, “The Workshop.”  As a result, every member of that supergroup now has imperfect clones running around.  Additionally, the least imperfect of the clones (the first copies) got the idea to steal the transporter components and use them to create an army of clones to take over Paragon City. I think for the finale I’ll have the heroes defend a transporter while a technician reverses the polarity.

So right there, that’s a mission with a lot of fighting, bosses to fight, and components to destroy.  I created various designs of the clones, for minions, lieutenants and bosses.  I found that the clone angle was really a “cheat” since I could just reuse the character designs over and over again.  Then I could tweak various aspects, like skin tones or add goatees to make the variations of the clones.  The bosses of course, were just character designs from the characters in my Super Group on Virtue.

Which really only has four active characters in it, so that made it easy as well.

I added some flavor text, dialogue and then saved the Arc title and I was off and running testing the new mission.  It was that easy.  I think concept to execution was about 45 minutes total.  After playtesting it for a while I’ll publish it to the main servers and then people can play through it.

Overall, it was very cool seeing something I had written become a part of a video game.

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