San Diego Comic Con 2011 - City Of Heroes Freedom: Interview with Melissa Bianco

What changes will City Of Heroes Freedom bring to the Superpower MMO genre?
Think we approach in own way. Only limited by own past. Can always change. Always pushing envelop. Have freedom to do what want.

City Of Heroes is one of the successes for the Superpower MMO, why is that?
We wanted to be a hit. Freedom is the first to the hybrid model which can have some bad implications to it. We wanted to make sure we give customers something. With the VIP membership you get a free server transfer and 400 paragon a month. You also gain access to signature stories. We started development of Freedom after we finished “Going Rogue”. Always working on more content. That's the whole purpose. The players have 7 years of content to work through. Overall it's a good deal for customers and we're all about benefiting the players

How will pre-existing Heroes and Villains be affected?
Crazy benefits with paragon points. You can play for free, and even if you can't pay, can get to lvl 1 to 50. Returning players return as VIP, giving them access to more content. More perks than free players. You can also choose which of your heroes that you will be playing as. You can also have 7 day free trail with “Going Rogue”.

What's different from the last expansion?
Converge is new issue. Freedom is the new hybrid model we're implimenting.

How would you compare City Of Heroes to, say, DC Universe Online?
With DC Universe Online, it gives us the need to push the game. Before we were alone in that field but now we're forced to hold the number one position. This forces us to be sure to put out high quality content. More than anything to stay ahead of curve. Force to work harder. We're competitive of course we'll do that.

Will retailers be offering a Collector's Edition or a pre-order bonus?
City of Heroes Freedom will be an online download. Right through website. Quick DL, more accessible.

Will there be any changes to the grinding that players deal with?
The structure of the game is the same, we focused more on the new early game experience. Open up to everyone. Refocus efforts on early game game play. This undate offers a new UI and tutorial, a more intense than the previous ones. We added two new starting zones. Atlas park got new complete upgrade taking advantage of everything the game has to offer.

Will Top Cow be releasing any supplementary comics?
Probably not, but the original series are available online. We started through Top Cow Dark Horse and later went to Blue Horse.