What we Learned About SoH Villains

There was a lot of interesting information released during the video interview with the MMO writer Neith. Some of it about the villains is summarised below. A forum post on the Ship of Heroes Official Site goes into more detail.

The Villain Groups we have so far, and which were shown in the video are:

  • The Nagdellians: ruthless alien invaders bent on domination of the Justice.
  • The Prometheans: a secret sect of Cyborg/Dark Magic Users that wish to create a super race of cybernetically-enhanced humans to rule the Justice.
  • The Yekus Mercenary Clan: a widespread group of soldiers for hire that serve as muscle for the highest bidder.
  • The Red Sigil: a group of powerful magic users committed to revolutionary overthrow of the government of the Justice.

The Nagdellians have been expanded into four models, including enhanced soldiers, two Lieutenants, one with undisclosed super powers (one has the power to summon reinforcements); and the newly introduced Nagdellian Boss. It's rumoured that there may be Nagdellians with the ability to heal and some may exhibit typical controller and mastermind type powers.

The Prometheans live and build their army, by abduction and by a few foolish volunteers, from the safety of secret, inaccessible engineering access sublevels aboard the Justice, representing a serious threat to the security of the ship from within. They use cybernetic enhancements to improve their ability to make war.

The Yekus Mercenary Clan recruits members from all parts of the galaxy to create a large army of general muscle and soldiers that operate in multiple worlds. This is the first time the Yekus are shown in game – concept art was shown in October 2017. The line up of Yekus soldiers includes a Captain, with and without longcoat, and a super powered brawler with a cybernetic arm.

The Red Sigil is a secretive, revolutionary subgroup within the much larger community of magic-users aboard the Justice.  While they tend to favor old-fashioned and formal clothes, the Red Sigil has no uniform; any mage could secretly be a member.

The new Nagdellians are primarily the work of noted character artist Robert Brown.

Villian Groups - Video Interview with Neith

Another exciting video interview with the devs;  Consultant (Casey) and Matt talking with Neith live on twitch. I missed the stream but the video has been posted on Youtube and I've indexed it here, as usual.

Neith writes articles about game design, game theory, general reviews, etc. and has started a Patreon Page to support her game writing activities.

Villian Groups - Video Interview with Neith
01:30Introducing Iris, a witch aboard the ship
02:00Brief discussion of npc costumes, associated bandwidth issues
03:10Introducing the Red Sigil villian group
03:40Talking about magic users on board, mostly good
06:20Youkas are one of the primary mercenary clans, such clans don't always get on
07:40The Nagdelians, size and red flashes on uniform indicates higher rank/caste - can call in reinforcements
12:20Different castes of Nagdelians, hoping for for 5-6 at launch
12:40Talking about the Nagdelians motivations
14:00How the aliens get on board
17:20Confirming that Nagdelians have control/buff/debuff powers, maybe healers
17:40Giving mobs the sort of powers and tactics that players use to add to the challenge
19:30Meeting the Prometheans and talking about their motivations (they're all linked back to their keader)
22:30Promethean history and their possible bases in the deep engineering sections of the ship
23:25No playable villians, at least at launch
24:20A note that Sword Blossom is the head of the engineering section
26:50Introducing the Yekus
28:00No decision made at this stage to allow players to wear villian uniforms
29:20Talking about hair shaders and performance issues
31:10Motivations for the Youkas
31:40Explaining how citizens/mercenaries are resurrected after defeat in the same way as heroes
32:30Why the mercenaries are tolerated on board - employed by some others for protection, etc. Complex storyline around creation of mecenary groups, etc.
35:00Robots, a future enemy group - robots can become hostile when they attain consciousness (caused by unobtanium)
38:00'Evil' robots could potentially 'turn' other robots to their cause
39:30Introducing a new work in progress costume for females based on requests from testers in the last Costume Creator test
42:00Confirmation that costume items can be mixed & matched and colours changed as the player desires
48:00Summary by Consultant of what's been done so far wrt enemy/villian groups
49:30Confirmation of achievement/levelling/exploration badges, etc. - some of which will be account wide
50:00Talking about the importance of the established community to new players
50:50Decals for costumes are a future possibility
52:50Different flight poses will be available at some stage but animations for male/females/large are all different and it takes time
55:00About computers, performance on older machines, optimisation, etc.
56:50Still aiming for February for the next alpha test
59:00Consultant talking about Neith's Patreon page
1:00:50Showing off some interesting multiple power effects
1:03:55Neith talking about herself and her background
1:06:30Showing a female character with (moving/flowing) long hair in action, currently using APEX but it may change in the future
1:08:50Looking into an option to turn off other players effects but it'll be a player choice

The Warehouse District

Here are some notes about the latest Ship of Heroes newsletter released. This one covers the Warehouse District.
  1. Welcome to the Warehouse District, a zone in the southeastern corner of Apotheosis City, the capital city of the generational ship-state the FHS Justice.  In 2017, the devs at Ship of Heroes have created 18 videos that showed off Heroic Plaza, the downtown area, the Science Park, and even the Justice Corp HQ's rooftop Power Testing Facility.  Now it is time for a look at the Warehouse District.
  2. The custom-designed Warehouse District will be another setting for missions, as well as a great place for patrolling and street-sweeping. In fact, SOH has already built a mission map appropriate for this area.
  3. Beyond being a staple of many superhero adventures, a Warehouse District makes sense in the FHS Justice’s because Apotheosis City is the main trade area of the ship; the district holds imports for transfer to the engines below and the rest of the ship above, and exports waiting for smaller cargo ships to take them.
  4. The Warehouse District will include interiors for some buildings, like warehouse administrative offices and possible hidden areas. Some of the large buildings are semi-enclosed and can be explored now, though enemies will be added later.  Distinct features of the district include large open spaces, industrial machinery, and the elevated Light Rail Transit which will serve almost all parts of Apotheosis City.
  5. All environments in Ship of Heroes are custom designed to create a new, unique world for super-powered adventures.  The Warehouse District is designed with horizontal and vertical movement and combat in mind for flying and non-flying characters, so it is dotted with stairs, ramps, and walkways.

Ship of Heroes launches into Beta by end of the year, but it is boarding now! Visit the forums on www.shipofheroes.com to support our game and keep up with the latest news in the development of this new, positive community and flexible, customizable, and fun-to-play sci-fi superhero MMORPG.

Coinciding with this release was a video interview with The Positive Gamer, posted on Youtube. I've indexed the video's key points...

00:30New small offices, signs for realism, area expanded into water
01:35Elevated rails for trains, etc. running around the area
02:15Stairs adding a 3D nature to the area
02:40Foliage improvements underway
03:10One of the first mission maps will be a warehouse in this district
04:00Impressive looking pipework on the roofs and water tower
06:5012 powers on a bar, a numer of bars will be available
07:30Elevator crane, possibly to take players to other levels for missions, etc.
09:00Talking about the way the dev team is showing things as they do them (transparency)
10:00About the multitude of mission options given by the ship travelling through space visiting different worlds, etc.
11:40More detail about alpha/beta timings and suchlike and how to qualify for the limited alpha scheduled for Feb 2018, etc.
13:30Beta scheduled for end of 2018, early access for anyone who donates $25+
15:45Wider test of character creator planned some time in 2018 (maybe)
19:10Flying towards the arch
19:50Further discussions around transparency and the community
24:50Talking about the open letter and the state of MMO's
26:50The space needle
28:00hazard zone, currently empty but will be a hard area for harvesting for low level players
30:00Graphics for power sets have been updated
31:30Not an item based game, no special weapons, etc.
32:30Possibility to temporarily augment a character to give it a short term boost
35:00Lots of optimisation done recently with the upcoming alpha test in mind
36:15Emotes are definately planned, lots of fun things for role players, etc.
38:30combat alpha will show current enemies, launch planned for possibly 6 enemy groups

SoH Youtube Video Index with massivelyop.com

Another really interesting video, this time a live stream by MJ Guthrie of massivelyop.com about Ship of Heroes which (I thought) was long enough to deserve/require an index. Since this was a live Q&A session with subscribers to the channel, the questions flitted back and forth a bit so there are no headings in the index.

03:50Zooming out from the city to the outside of the ship (20 miles long, 20 city levels) and talking about the ship itself
09:45Instanced mission map with the signature hero "Ambasaddor", the map alse shows the base of the arch which explains the mission types expected (dust!)
12:20Discussing instances and a positive community
14:45Not looking for a huge player base at start, hoping to grow the game as it progresses with a subscription model
15:45an interesting multi-level circular room
18:30Everything in the game so far is made inhouse, beta planned for end 2018
19:00Talking about recommendations/requests etc. from the community
20:25Talking about player created missions (maps, npc's, npc powers, etc.)
22:00Confirmation of solo content as well as group content ingame
23:40Showing a staging area of a new map, testing surfaces, etc., always looking for feedback
27:30Confirmation that players will be able to change difficulty levels in a mission
30:30Talking about the coding capabilities for players to use when setting up missions
31:10More about about the game lore, etc
35:00Talking about the UI and available options, etc.
36:50Multi-level map with varying ceiling heights
38:50Anti-stealth powers confirmed ingame
40:30Player housing/bases confirmed ingame but probably not at launch
41:40Weather effects not at launch but may come later
44:55Power customisation still being discussed
46:40About destructible environments, definately not at launch, under consideration
49:30Current animations are not placeholders but there's still lots to do
53:10Rooms are basic and empty looking but ingame will have lots more 'props' and enemies
53:40Confirmation that players can sit in chairs!
56:25'Organic' maps exist with trees, grass, flowers, etc. to add variety
57:40Caves are difficult in UE4 and are still being looked into
59:30More about travel powers
01:03:40Character progression at 'endgame', SoH will start with 20 levels with plans to get to 50 levels pretty quickly.
01:08:00Sidekicking/scaling to allow players to team up with others at different levels will be ingame
01:09:10About power sets, classes, etc.
01:14:00About the ingame economy (currency: dust) and about trading, crafting etc.
01:18:55Powers and items do not change character appearance
01:22:50Donors will be able to create characters before release
01:24:40Character creater confirmed to have no timeout
01:25:30Custom keybinds will be ingame
01:26:30Talking about the community
01:26:50More about customisation and the characters 'personal' story
01:27:50Future expansion a big thing
01:31:00Ingame voting system something to add to game in the future
01:36:40Back out to Apotheosis City
01:38:50The Arch
01:39:00The Space Needle
01:40:00All player characters are heroes but there are a LOT of npc's on board without such powers
01:46:00most levels will have their own cities with discrete cultures, etc.

Closing statement by Casey McGeever

List of SoH Youtube Videos I have indexed

Community Priorities and Outlook for January 2018

The outlook here is copied verbatim from the official website because I'm still suffering from the mother all all flu's and will very likely make a big mess if I try to rewrite it.

1. We are going to be working to set up and perfect the combat Alpha this month. We'll be updating the community as we work.
2. I've got a short opinion-piece about what I think happened in the MMORPG market recently, and how our plans for SoH respond to these trends.
3. We want to do one or more interviews with some of the bloggers who cover us, and show off some new stuff.
4. In a separate thread, I'm going to solicit the views of the community about what everyone wants to see and hear from us during 2018, that they are not getting now. What's most important?
In general, we're going to use January to set up the alpha, solicit more feedback from the community, and then finalize our plans for the rest of 2018.

Consultant also posted a question on the SoH forum detailing the phenomenal progress made in 2017 and what Heroic Games learned from the community. He ended the posting with a question...

What would you, as a community member, most like to see in 2018? This is a forum post, not a poll, so that you can speak eloquently about multiple subjects. Tell us your priorities about what we should be doing to keep you engaged, and to get others engaged.