City of Heroes (and thus City of Villains) is one of those sleeper games that has a lot of hidden depth. I played CoH for almost a year starting back in Feb. 2005 when it first came out. I like to refer to it as MMO Lite.
It's a good game, and a good starter game for those who aren't really sure about the whole MMO scene. It's very simple to play and enjoy, and doesn't bog you down with many of the more complex MMO aspects. For new comers to the market, its perfect. It's how I got my wife into MMO's and now I can't get her away from the computer.. heh ("I just have this one last quest to do.." "Uh huh.. sure honey.. " heh)
After a while I moved on to other games, but found myself reactivating my account from time to time to give it a try. For a while I played my City of Villains character almost exclusively until it once again just tired and I moved on.
Well I'm back at it. They have added a lot of content and depth to the game that really is interesting. Firstly its not like your more modern / typical MMO in that there aren't characters standing around with question marks over their head letting you know there is something to do. Lets be honest here, World of Warcraft is a good game but its seriously "dumbed down" in that it almost holds your hand while it plays itself.
City of Heroes hearkens back to the days of EverQuest 1 whereby you didn't know if someone had a quest or something for you unless you talked to them. Accomplishments were hidden from you, and thereby meant more to you when you actually accomplished it.
Death in CoH means something too compared to modern day MMO's. CoH has debt! Now I played Ultima Online and EverQuest 1 for years, so extremely painful death was the norm for me. In UO each time some naked PK ran up and killed you, you lost EVERYTHING! It sucked. In EQ1 though they changed that a lot in that you just had to make a corpse run and lost exp. But you didn't lose your stuff.. When CoH came out and they made it so you just got a little bit of debt, I was stunned. They made death meaningless.
HA! Look at what modern games do. In the most recent MMO, Age of Conan, death means absolutely nothing. You just get shot back to a respawn point.
But I get side tracked -- the CoH is a good game and I'm finding I really enjoy the new Rikti invasion stuff and I hope they will let us "counter invade" at some point. It'd be really cool to go to the Rikit homeworld or whatever and attack them back!! (maybe you can do this already and I just havent gotten to that content.. I dunno)
Something else they have added to the game is a pretty thorough marketplace and crafting system. I like that -- thats pretty darn cool. Well, one of the tricks of old is to watch your prices on that market. I mean I dont understand why players, in game after game, will put stuff on the market below what they could sell them to the merchant for!!
I spent about 4 hours last night just running goods from the market to the local merchant to sell. People would put stuff on the market for 10INF, that they could sell to the merchants for 4500+INF. Seriously.
In 4 hours I made 2 million INF which just goes to show you, super heroes is st00pid. Or lazy. I prefer to think of them as stupid.