DC Universe Online's latest DLC, Origin Crisis, allows players to fill the shoes of some of their favorite -- and not so favorite -- heroes and villains and fight to keep reality as it is. Thanks to yesterday's update, players will actually be traveling through time in order to stop a chain of events that might result in entirely new universes and timelines. You'll be bamming and powing your way through content in the hopes that history remains intact.
We sat down with Jens Andersen, Creative Director of DC Universe Online, to discuss this special DLC, a pack that has been in planning since the game's conception.
In Origin Crisis, players will work to stop future Batman or future Lex Luthor from destroying reality. None of the outcomes will actually change the standard game experience, so when players go back into the "real" world, they will still be able to interact with Batman and other iconic characters. However, you might be able to witness a future in which Bruce Wayne's parents were never killed but instead lived on to make the city even safer. Players might also meet a Lex Luthor who is a good guy in a different timeline and in a different Metropolis.
Another key feature of the new patch is called Iconic Anomalies. These special simulation missions mark the first time that players will play an iconic hero or villain against NPCs. We watched as Andersen worked his way through one mission -- similar to Neo "jacking in" -- that showed Bizarro resulting from a botched cloning job and fighting off lab assistants. Players will have a tough time in these missions, especially if they do not keep up with counter mechanics and timers. Even Andersen, an ace at the game, had a hard time and died several times.
The experience and items gained in these missions are kept by the player, so there should lots of reasons for players to join in. On the hero side, players will fill the shoes of the Huntress as she fights her way to a finale featuring villains such as the Scarecrow or the Croc. These encounters are not for newbies, though. You'll need to have a combat rating of 84 and a level of 30. The events will result in level 81 to 83 gear, some of the best gear in the game so far. Level 85 gear can be purchased using the new Marks of Reality; level 86 and 87 gear will drop from two new endgame raids.
The first one is called The Nexus of Reality. During this mission, players with a combat rating of 84 will travel to the center of the Earth to fight either Batman or Lex Luthor in order to stop him from altering reality forever. Of course, this mission will be no cake-walk, and you'll need to carefully consider your character's loadout.
The next raid is called Paradox Wave and will send players into alternate realities to defeat the results of the paradox caused by Lex Luthor or Batman. Not only will the final fights be challenging, but players might also gain access to iconic items from the world of DC Comics, like Superboy's DNA sample. It all blends together into one confusing story, but Andersen promised that it all makes sense in the end. We hope so because things are getting pretty complicated in DC Universe Online!
One of the highlights of the tour was the introduction of the new Quantum Powers, a new controller set that lets the player control space and time. Until now, there hadn't been a new power set introduced since DLC 3, The Battle for Earth. Not only do these new abilities look amazing, but they are also offering mechanics that have not been open to players before. The centerpiece of the set has to be Quantum Tunneling, a sort of teleport that blinks players out of danger. Andersen showed us how an NPC charged him, zipping right past him to be on the other side. In the moment of confusion, Andersen was able to turn around and clobber the evil-doer! There are more abilities that affect the placement and speed of enemies, so the new set will be perfect for those who want to make a huge difference in a group.
Massively's not big on scored reviews -- what use are those to ever-changing MMOs? That's why we bring you first impressions, previews, hands-on experiences, and even follow-up impressions for nearly every game we stumble across. First impressions count for a lot, but games evolve, so why shouldn't our opinions?