Our first stop in the tour of DLC 8 was Gotham Wastelands, which is larger than the central city map from the Lightning Strikes DLC and incorporates a new level of environmental effects. The Sons of Trigon storyline picks up where the Sins of the Father storyline left off: Brother Blood succeeded in releasing the spirit of Trigon, but something went wrong, and the new update is all about Trigon's spirit's being locked between our realm and his own realm -- and his attempts to break free.
As we got a look at the new zone, we could see that the sky featured several constellations, each of which represented one of Trigon's children, who in turn represent individual sins and who are bosses of the areas in Gotham Wastelands. We got a look at one of the two starting areas, where Giganta, Circe, Brother Blood, Cheetah, and Gentleman Ghost were all on hand to offer a variety of missions to players.
During the tour, Andersen grouped up with a few real players (if only they knew with whom they were grouped!) to take on Raven's soul. During the fight, the Titans came to the aid of Raven's soul, including Superboy, Wonder Girl, Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Starfire, as Raven's two halves of her soul are split and fighting to gain dominance.
The battle gave us our first look at the new Celestial Powers. Systems Designer Jesse Scott explained that they're divine inspired; there are two trees, a blessed tree and a cursed tree, which parallel the light and dark powers. Players can use abilities from the two trees and perform some interesting combo mechanics. As you activate a blessed power, for example, and unlock its cursed mirror, the two powers will create a new version that grants you that power's normal benefits plus a bonus, like a burst heal or a lifedrain-style heal. The Celestial powers produce a very active style of healing, akin to a battle-healer role, and it was fun to watch Andersen's tank, with his Earth power set, work together with Scott's Celestial-powered healer.
Along with the Bounty missions, there is also an open world map that includes several themed areas like the Knight's Dome Cathedral Ruins and Tunnel of Lust. Andersen added that there are collections, investigations, and player briefs in DLC 8 as well, so there are plenty of goodies to be found for those that like to explore.
Our tour took us to the Cathedral, where we watched Andersen and Scott run through one of the duos. The Cathedral is redone in Gotham Wastelands, and duos can enter to complete missions that are given by a nearby mentor. There are a total of 12 overall missions, with four missions in each of the three areas: Wrath, Envy, and Lust. Players can do them once a day, and they're random, up to three in the zone per day. In addition, players can do the duos each day (there are three total) as well as the alert, which features Trigon (you take on either Wonder Woman or Circe, with Trigon in the background causing plenty of trouble).
The Cathedral is eerily beautiful, and even though it's in ruins, the lighting effects and details make it an eye-catching zone. As Andersen and Scott worked their way through the Cathedral, we got an even better look at the Celestial powers in action. Scott used a blessed shield and a holy power ability and then combo'd into a cursed power that brought up shadow effects. He used an ability called Retribution, a nice cone attack that heals everyone nearby, and one of the main battle heal abilities. He also used Divine Light, an ability that places glowing glyphs on the ground. Any ally who touches the glyphs will get a special buff that heals. Meanwhile, any NPC who touches the glyphs will be purified such that part of their attacks actually heal players. Another attack, Consume Soul, damages the enemy and directs heals back to the entire party.
At one point, Scott hit an enemy with a curse effect that proc'ed a nice heal-over-time when the NPC was defeated. The cursed NPC is highlighted with a mark, making it easy for party members to pick him out of a group and focus their attacks during battle. These new abilities are indeed fast-paced and are sure to create some interesting scenarios as players experiment with various pairings in the new duos.
Lastly, we saw a scrimmage between two new Legends characters: Donna Troy and Cheetah. The scrimmage, added back in Update 26, is a way to take on friends in an arranged PvP match. You can use your own character or choose one of several Legends characters.
The scrimmage gave us a chance to see the new abilities of Donna and Cheetah in particular. Cheetah has fast feral attacks, which are martial arts-style combos complete with feral animations, tail flicks, and plenty of feisty roars. She's a magic-based character with super speed and is actually the first super speedster introduced to Legends. One of Cheetah's more exciting combos is rake, which adds a toxic poison damage over time. And when Cheetah gets low on health, she goes into a berserk mode, which makes her attacks that much more deadly. Meanwhile, Donna Troy has magical artifacts given to her by the gods, and she uses those in battle similar to Wonder Woman's wrist bracers and lasso. Donna Troy also gets magical shields and healing powers from her magic mantle and belt, and her AoE punch helps against crowds of enemies. But the highlight of the fight was her ability to perform a combo that leads to a big kick attack, which Andersen referred to as "chin music."
Along with Cheetah and Donna, The Sons of Trigon Update brings new gear modeled after Brother Blood and Raven as well as new Celestial and Cursed armor sets to pursue. Players can carry out bounties for Raven and explore three new areas and the open world content of Gotham Wastelands, and along with the 12 new missions is the new alert featuring Trigon, Wonder Woman, and Circe, which will be featured in an upcoming SOE stream (so keep your eyes peeled!).
DLC 8 will go live on September 3rd, but Legendary members will have early access as soon as next week. Time to live in sin!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?