NYCC: Welcome to Monster Island

The New York Comic Con was, as one would expect, overflowing with comic book fans, making it the ideal place to show off Champions Online. There was even a live-action Defender walking around the booth, enticing people to come take a look at the gameplay demo. We got the chance to speak with Design Director Bill Roper about numerous topics, from character customization to the creative nemesis system. And while I was highly impressed with numerous aspects of the game, such as the physics system that will lend itself to some interesting quests, the somewhat repetitive nature of the Monster Island demo didn't completely pull me in to the world or show off all the game has to offer. Regardless, Cryptic is obviously listening to its fans in beta, as shown through a recent UI revamp to make character creation less confusing, so hopefully the game will be a polished machine for launch.

NYCC: Live Long and Prosper

Admittedly I haven't always been a Star Trek fan. To that extent, I've only begun to explore the Star Trek final frontier in the last eight months. I find it amusing that something as non-direct as Cryptic licensing an intellectual property could actually introduce me to a new lifestyle. What's more, a lifestyle I’ve always been out of the loop about from within my circle of friends. I love Star Trek, but the biggest question I continue to ask myself is, "Will I love Star Trek Online?"

Sitting down with Craig Zinkievich at New York Comic Con, was a genuine pleasure. Even though we had spoken with Craig back in October, there was a lot of new, exciting stuff to go over; namely the character customization that was shown in a trailer at the Con, as well as the differentiation between space and ground combat. For the sake of structure, I'm going to start with character customization.

NYCC: Star Trek Character Customization Trailer

We're still here at Comic Con in New York but we got our hands on a trailer that was debuted during the Cryptic panel on Saturday. The video below, which gives the viewer a clear look at the endless possibilities, leaves little to be imagined. I'm looking forward to beta when I can finally create my own race that I plan to call "Zamdroid". Check out the first Character Customization video below and stay tuned for my in depth article from our meeting with Star Trek Online Executive Producer, Craig Zinkievich.

Cryptic Takes STO to New York Comic Con

The New York Comic Convention is huge. Every year, millions come to drool at the seemingly infinite amount of dorky material, be it printed or on video. Comic conventions are starting to become a haven for gaming news and for the gaming industry. Cryptic Studios has decided to take their works in progress over to New York and get some more attention and generate some heat for these games. The schedule goes over exactly when the Star Trek Online people will have floor-time. If you are going to be in the neighborhood from February 6th to the 8th, reserve your ticket and your time now!

Champions Online Interview with Bill Roper

When Cryptic announced that the famous Bill Roper was going to be joining the Champions Online team, I have to be honest, the first thing that popped into my head was the disappointment that Hellgate: London turned out to be. Most of his fans were excited and eager to give him another chance; however, some felt differently. We sat down to talk to Bill about his new project, the vision that he brings to the team, and what he learned from Hellgate: London.

Tamat : Hello Bill! Thanks for joining us today to talk about Champions Online. How are you settling in at Cryptic?

Roper : Really well, thank you. Cryptic is an awesome place to work. The people are incredibly talented and passionate about what they're doing, the games we’re making are great, and I'm incredibly energized and eager to come into the office every day. It's also great to be able to focus on making games as opposed to dealing with the ins and outs of running a company.

Tamat : You've been in the gaming industry for more than 14 years. How do you keep the creativity flowing and maintain a high level of excitement for both yourself and the players?

Champions Online Featured on G4TV

For all of you fans of G4TV out there, and we know there are quite a few, you have a special treat in store for those of you who are by a television later this evening. You will be seeing a snippet of exclusive gameplay footage.

A preview of Champions Online will be featured on G4TV's X-Play on Tuesday, January 27th. The segment will be airing at 8 pm Eastern - please check your local listings for local times.

Not only are they getting some air-time over at G4, but they're changing the way their rating system works and asking for input from the players and prospective players on how all characters should emote. This is a first for any massively multiplayer game, but let us just hope that all of the gestures are from the last three mainstream-popular dances.

Star Trek Online Offers Moral Dilema

James Tiberius Kirk made some tough choices in his reign as captain of the Enterprise. From battling his own Information Officer, Spock, to letting hundreds of unnamed ensigns simply get phased into oblivion. Star Trek Online has put forth a sort of "James T. Problem" in their forums, asking their users to submit their response to a critical situation.

"You have been assigned to take refugees to Starbase 187 when you receive a distress signal from a medical ship ferrying critical supplies to Pacifica, which has been struck by a plague of unknown origin. When you reach the medical ship, you find that the ship is surrounded by two Gorn Cruisers and five Gorn frigates. The medical supplies must reach Pacifica, but not only are you carrying innocent civilians on your ship; you limited weapons capability."

Most everyone thatwho read that is probably thinking the phrase “What would Kirk do?” Regardless of what decision you made, lives would be at stake. This is possibly what we all have to look forward to when Star Trek Online is released: Lots and lots of sticky situations.

Source: Star Trek Online Forums

"Ask Cryptic" Gets Updated With New Champions Info

Being the unstoppable powerhouse it has become, Cryptic has updated their questions regarding Champions Online. Users are submitting some pretty tough questions, regarding subjects such as weapon-wielding to PvP. With every passing day, they seem to pick up more steam for this massively multiplayer extravaganza. For instance, when asked about Nemesis' for any hero, Cryptic shot back with this.

"We're planning to do that. If you’re on a team together, eventually you’ll have the option to all battle one Nemesis, or you can have all of your Nemeses team up and battle against your super group."

Intriguing, interesting and, most of all, intense. Those three things are what we all look for in our games, and Champions Online looks like it will deliver, no-questions-asked.

Source: Champions Online: Ask Cryptic

Champions Online Gets Rating System

Everyone needs some form of back-scratching and validation. Champions Online has provided both of these to their users by giving them a rating system. One star is terrible, or “pretty neat” whereas five stars is “SUPER COOL.” We're glad they are thinking outside the box when they create their masterpiece. We hope to continue to see this sort of development as we get closer to the release of this title.

Source: Champions Online Official Website

More Champions Online Gameplay Footage

Cryptic has put out another video of their highly anticipated attempt into the massively multiplayer realm, Champions Online. For those who haven't been paying attention lately, we covered this just recently when some footage showed up on MSNBC. Still, it's not clear whether or not this is Xbox 360 footage or possibly from a PC. Regardless, you can get a great sense of the realism involved in this title.