September 2nd, 2004

sick

Squishy, tasty

My kitchen sink is leaking. I think it's probably the drain, because the giant puddle appeared after I did dishes. Apparently this isn't the first time this happened, since the bumpy area of the tiles near the sink immediately swelled up and became squishy and evil.

Fortunately, I know where my landlord lives. Though this coincides nicely with the upcoming release of Silent Hill 4: The Room, the happy story of a guy moving into a nice new apartment. If this is an SH tie-in marketing event, we can expect my apartment to get much more squishy, real soon. And I was just thinking some mishappen giant fetus monsters and a mysterious woman who gets more and more mutilated every time I see her would really brighten up the place.
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    L/R Instrumental Soundtrack
grumpy

City of Nonconformist Protagonists

I got to play City Of Heroes with Glyph for a little while last night. That game has really come along, and it was pretty good to start with... It's an MMORPG, but it doesn't have a lot of the usual crap that makes me avoid them. The combat is also fun and interesting (especially with group dynamics), leveling up means a new super power or power enhancements, not just some numbers (they don't like numbers over there, yay for histograms!) and they keep adding new stuff, like new monsters and alternate dimensions and underground realms of terrible and squishy evil, like my sink. It's the kind of game you can come back to after a week and hop right into a group with just about anybody and start doing something without much homework, and I really appreciate that. And the sidekick system (and upcoming reverse sidekick system) lets you sort of ignore level balancing, so you can have beginners hold their own on your legendary super team, or have your Galactus level character slum it with some Teen Titan types and not totally ruin their fun.

There are a lot of fixes and improvements and new content coming out soon (no purchasing an expansion pack every six months), and we're real excited... They're fixing all the bugs I found, balancing a few nice things for Tanker and Defender style characters (which I play a lot), and making the Katana and Martial Arts techniques faster and cooler looking, which is a much needed change.

They're also adding big flowy capes as a sort of prestige feature for high level characters. This is a funny subject for me, and most of the people I know on CoH, because none of us would ever wear a "superhero cape". Not even like it's a grudge against people with powerful characters, since we all have qualifying 20-something characters now, or will by the time they're available, and they have no in game effect.

Basically what it comes down to is that nobody I know, or even team up with occasionally, actually dresses like a superhero. (This is probably a good time to explain that my main character is a Nun with an eyepatch.) The good Sister is often accompanied by grumpy mutant goth kids who suit up like they're heading to the ManRay, the reincarnations of ancient egyptian gods, who dress about like you'd expect, various sizes and shapes of robots (who don't wear clothes at all), and the occasional coven of half naked demon girls who can't find a good healer.

None of these people would be caught dead wearing a cape.

There are people with cowls, domino masks, and spandex out there, and I assume they're pretty excited about the capes (as are, I'm sure, all the dedicated Golden Age superhero fans), but all us Vertigo/Dark Horse types are going to have to wait. Supposedly, at level 30, you will be able to pick up "special effects" for your character, like constant arcs of electricity, particle effects, glowing eyes, and so on.

I'd also appreciate it if it wasn't so ingrained into the game, but I guess that's part of the fun. (street punks refer to heros as "Masks", rescued citizens compliment you on your "costume"... But I shrug those off as generic slang terms. Though it is funny when your costume is your own chitin-riddled flesh. Or I'm playing the ninja girl with the incurable degenerative nerve disease, whose cybernetics are slowly eating her alive as her body necrotizes, and people are like "Hey baby! lookin' good!" because she's a female superhero, and by CoH's programmed golden age logic, all superheroines are sexy.

Well, Manzokushi (and Fuggly Girl and SuckaFace and Your Mom and all the other pointedly unnattractive anti-heroines out there) will get their revenge someday, I'm sure, if only when the City Of Villans expansion comes out. We'll have to see if an Anti-Hero works better under their Hero or Villan rule set...

Though now that I think about it, Dr. Panzerfaust could probably do with a cape. As long as it was all purple and Goering style, as long as it doesn't make his jodhpurs look big. A mensch has to keep his style in mind, know what I'm sayin'?
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    Johnny Cash hollering about something or other