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[Cryptic MMORPGs] LFG for Quinn/Defender/Knox PST

OwenashiOwenashi Registered User regular
Those who remember City Of Heroes will remember Cryptic Studios, the group that made and ran the game before handing it over to NCSoft and making the poor mistake of joining with Atari to develop and run more MMOs. While the game they made now exists nowhere else but in our hearts, Cryptic's still going strong as the devs behind three games under the Perfect World umbrella. While not new to players from the PA-forums, I thought I'd prop up a topic to provoke a little interest from those that lurk in this corner of the woods.


Launched in 2010 after recovering the property from the bankrupted Perpetual Entertainment, Star Trek Online is probably Cryptic's best known title out of the three. Following the original Trek-continuity and set 30-plus years after Nemesis, the game has players taking up the roles of officers in the Federation's Starfleet and the Klingon Empire's Klingon Defense Force. Armed with a selection of weapons and their own ships, players can explore the Alpha and Beta Quadrants in several ways but mainly via missions that play out in both space with starship-combat and on alien planets with the help of Bridge Officer NPCs that you can visually customize nearly as much as your own character.

In May, Cryptic released Legacy Of Romulus, a content patch so big that it was labeled as STO's first expansion rather then it's usual moniker of a 'Season'. While notable for also giving Klingons a proper Lv1-20 arc (the game having previously started KDF players at Lv21), LoR's main draw is the addition of a third faction in the shape of the Romulan Republic, a new government born from the banding of those persecuted by the remains of the old Romulan Empire. While having it's own multiple-arc storyline and player-hubs to meet at, RR players choose at Lv10 to ally themselves with either the Federation or Klingons, allowing access to some of the content of the chosen group. It also saw the return of Denise Crosby who previously voiced the Natasha Yar from 'Yesterday's Enterprise' for the Third Anniversary Event in February and now Empress Sela for LoR.

This month saw the release of Season 8, the Sphere, marking the game's first step towards the Delta Quadrant as all three factions discover a route to a Dyson Sphere similar to the one from the TNG episode 'Relics'. Unfortunately, the Sphere was also found by the Voth, a race of evolved dinosaurs seen in the Voyager episode 'Distant Origin' who are more then willing to fight both within the air of the Sphere and on the ground for control of both it and what it holds. The release of the Season was set up with the prelude-mission Sphere Of Influence which had another TNG actor returning to voice his character, Michael Dorn.


Released in 2009 and the other title released by Cryptic while still with Atari, Champions Online currently comes to a lot of players as the forgotten middle child between STO and their latest title. Still, it's currently (to the best of my knowledge) the only superhero MMORPG around and it offers plenty of ways to be one thanks to Cryptic's well-known character creator. It's biggest point when launched as a subscription title was the ability to pick and choose which powers you wanted on your hero, something still doable for those that still subscribe or fork over Perfect World's Zen needed to unlock a Freeform Slot from the cash-shop. The game's still plenty playable though with the Archetypes created for F2P-players and when you're done beating up the villains found around the game's zones and Alerts (queued missions that last 5-15 minutes based on the type you want to play), you can create your own arch-villain with the Nemesis system that unlocks at Lv25.

The last game-altering update for the game was sadly last year with it's Reloaded content patch, giving access to moddable Vehicles to use during regular play as well as special Alerts and events modeled around them. Not to say that the game hasn't had things added to it since then.

In a follow-up to the Nighthawk (CO's Batman) event that gave players a taste of the upcoming Vehicles, a three-month Lemurian Invasion event kicked off in January, following that up in April with the Forum Malvanum event which added a gladiators-in-space Alert in May. In June, Cryptic created a new branch just for CO, Cryptic North. Staffed with devs from the Pirates Of The Burning Sea, they've been busy adding more to the game with the three-mission event FATAL ERR0R in July which had players help the Champions' AI SOCRATES fend off a hacker attack from both outside and within her mainframe and the Destroid (CO's Doombots) Invasion in September. Up next is the long-asked-for addition of Auras which aren't added at the tailor but rather slotted items that players can stack, for example giving players the option of adding Kirby-dots to their hands and flames at their feet at the same time.


Coming out officially in June, Neverwinter is the first Cryptic game out under Perfect World's label and is a more action-based RPG then either STO or CO. Set 100 years after the Neverwinter Nights games, the city the game's named after has seen better days after an catastrophe called the Spellplague led to a volcano's eruption wrecked it. Partially rebuilt and under the control of Waterdeep's Lord Neverember, players take up the roles of adventurers flocking to the city at the same time a lich wizard named Valindra Shadowmantle begins an invasion with her forces. Players have to deal with her on and off as well other troubles in and outside of the city.

In August, Cryptic released the first NW content patch AKA Module, Fury Of The Feywild. The Module introduces players to the endgame-zone of Sharandar, an elven land currently infested by giants and Red-Cap gnomes. The Module uses Sharandar in turn to introduce the Campaign System where access to the zone is mostly locked down at first entry and players needing to complete quests to slowly unlock more portions of it as well as it's story, zone-related gear and new passive abilities called Boons. It also introduces two new types of elves as playable races (though one needs to be unlocked with cash).

Coming December 5 is the second Module, Shadowmantle. This takes place at the Dread Ring, another Campaign-based endgame-zone where it seems players will finally have a chance to stop Valindra Shadowmantle before she can raise a dead dragon so big they built a fortress around it's bones. The biggest addition to come with the new zone is the first new class for the game since it started, the Hunter Ranger. The Hunter Ranger's gimmick is being able to swap between ranged attacks with bows and melee attacks with twin swords with a simple press of the Tab key and more importantly having individual sets of skills for both combat styles that don't share a cooldown, encouraging players to bounce back and forth between melee and ranged often in a fight.

Like I mentioned, there's a PA presence on all three games but there's not a lot of organization. STO has Fed and KDF Fleets and NW had a guild but it either fell apart or at least it's key members stopped playing. However, a unique feature of Cryptic's games is that private chat channels are linked to all three. So if anyone here wants to dive in, just type /channel_join "Penny Arcade" to join the channel in whatever game you're playing at to be heard by your fellow forumers. I myself am mostly playing STO at the moment though I'll dive into NW again when Shadowmantle launches and I'm perfectly willing to help out anyone in CO if they need a hand.


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    OwenashiOwenashi Registered User regular
    Sorry for the double-post but I just wanted to remind anyone here who plays NW that Module 2: Shadowmantle's gone live.

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    MeldingMelding Registered User regular
    hello, i have played all of these games. i was actually going to dig up the old neverwinter thread, but instead i guess i can just post here.

    is there any way to skip the early stuff in neverwinter? i don't feel like playing the first few areas over again for like the 5th time.

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    OwenashiOwenashi Registered User regular
    There's the Foundry missions if you want to level through that route. Cryptic spotlights the best and boots the worst so you don't have to go through a 'enter, push button, win' sort. The only thing is that the chests at the end tend to be random when it comes to the type of gear so it may not match your class.


    With the arrival of Shadowmantle, I completely forgot that STO kicked off this year's Winter Wonderland event today too. They added something new to the stuff you can already do from last year's go by shrinking groups of players down to save a gingerbread colony from the Wonderland's evil snowmen. Only snowballs and snowball-weapons are allowed. The event's big prize this year is a second Breen ship, a Raider-type ship (meaning all but one of the Bridge Officer slots are universal) this time that brings a new Breen-type bridge usable for it and last year's prize. All you have to do to get it is compete in the Wonderland's Fastest Game on Ice race once a day for 25 days out of the event's 35-day length to earn enough tokens for it.

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