Meta’s Verse: Who Will Die? Reviewed
By Meticulous Meta, OnRPG Paragon Reporter
I’ve mentioned the City of Heroes Signature Story Arcs a few times since they started back in September. I tried not to talk about them too much though as I wanted to save most of it for when it was all over. Of course there was that little bit back in February when I just couldn’t contain myself anymore. And now episode 7 of Who Will Die has been released and concluded the first Signature Story Arc. I’m finally ready to look back on the arc one episode at a time.
Magical obelisk stealing super powers! This arc features a pretty cool map. I say cool but I mean hot, really, REALLY hot. Like lava in the middle of Paragon City hot! No, I’m not talking about the latest Volcano remake. And no teddy bears were harmed in the making of the lava lake. You have to save one of the members of the Freedom Phalanx who has had his powers taken from him by this obelisk. For which he is grateful, he doesn’t buy you dinner though. Interestingly enough I have more trouble doing this short story arc than any of the others. Who knew sentient volcanic rock beasts could hit so hard?
A skull has been taken from the Midnighter’s Club. Of course being the organization of magic that they are the skull was far from ordinary. It belongs to Tommy Arcanus, and in fact it IS Tommy Arcanus. The father of hero Numina haunts his own skull and lives on a reception desk. It is your job to run all over Paragon and the Isles chasing after that skull. In this arc you meet the extremely creepy and awesome group called Rulu-Shin. They’re creepy, did I mention that? They have huge gold eyes in their chests. Sadly we don’t see them again. For now.
A rogue group of Arachnos who are ever so cleverly called Rogue Arachnos call up the heroes wanting to negotiate a peace treaty. He’s requested that Alexis Cole-Duncan herself represent the heroes at the talks in Warburg. For anyone who doesn’t know that is Miss Liberty, daughter of Statesman and mother to Ms Liberty. So she goes. Not only does she go but she doesn’t take much protection. Mostly just everyone’s favorite archer, Manticore. While he’s outside on a smoke break/checking out a disturbance/something else they KILL Miss Liberty. Sadly it I saw it coming miles away and dreaded having to tell Statesman the bad news.
Statesman is missing, hopefully kicking some major amounts of ass and generally reducing Warburg to a pile of rubble. While he’s away Malaise, a sometimes hero, sometimes villain starts messing with Sister Psyche’s mind. You take an adventure into Psyche’s head that feels a bit like Magic School Bus meets super hero movie. Inside is a portion of a woman named Aurora Borealis, Psyche’s sidekick. Only this bit isn’t too happy.
This is the part I raged about back in February in the article Death of an Icon. [http://www.onrpg.com/MMO/City-of-Heroes/review/Metas-Verse-Death-of-an-Icon]
I’ll just get it out now so we can move on. Statesman dies. He dies right in front of us and there is nothing we can do to stop it. This part makes excellent use of cut scenes and ends on a very touching note which makes you feel just a little bit better about his death. After all he’s going to be with his wife who he hasn’t seen since her death in the 80s from old age and cancer. Though I’m still sad/annoyed he’s gone I am glad they went through the extra effort to make sure we knew he was happy.
There is more trouble with Sister Psyche. The poor Freedom Phalanx doesn’t even get a moment’s break after their leader’s death before another life is taken. This one comes at the hands of one of their own. Her own husband in fact. In a scene that is quite familiar to the comic world the psychic begs him to take her life to protect the world from the unstoppable psychic damage she is causing. And he does it! This was completely unexpected and made my inner romantic cry. I spent the entirety of Part 7 hoping they reversed it.
Sadly Sister Psyche is still dead, so is Statesman. And Darrin Wade, the man behind all of these attacks on the Freedom Phalanx is becoming a god. He’s released his minions all across the world to spread out the hero population and make it harder to fight him off. But he didn’t count on you being as awesome as you are. This part goes back to using awesome new maps and cut scenes. You get to fight side by side with some unlikely allies, see the Earth from orbit and see some awesome artifacts that make lore fans drool.
This was a fitting end to a story that has been stringing us along for months now. There has been no word yet on when Signature Story Arc 2 will be starting or even what it will be about. But you have to wonder what they will come up with next that will top going face to face with a god.