The City Scoop! ~Front Page~ September 21, 2007




The City Scoop

Interview with Lead Designer, Matt Miller

though Positron's helmet is off, Matt Miller is still a man of many hats. He
graciously consented to answer some questions for the City Scoop, admitting
that he loves a good Q and A. Our only constraints were that the dead horses
had to stay in the barn, and what the future holds is unknowable (for now). So
if you come looking for tidbits about Issue 11, we're sorry in advance. However
there are some Easter Eggs unhidden, and a long held myth busted. Enjoy!

Matt Miller, the regular guy

Q: Have you ever been recognized, either in-game or on the street?

Matt Miller: Never on the street, but one person
successfully nailed me during a double XP weekend. He knew I was a Dominator,
and what server I played on (and my approximate level), and I got a tell saying
“Posi?” I played dumb and asked who that was, and that I didn’t read the forums
so I had no idea what he was talking about. He apologized and left me alone
after that.

Q: “Wife Aggro” is a popular term of endearment around here. How big a deal is it in your home when you want to pursue the geekier side of your nature? Are you a gaming couple?

Matt Miller:
It’s a trade off. I try to give my wife as much free time as she gives me. I’ll
watch the kid a couple nights, and I never make full weekend plans. I try to
give her plenty of notice on when I am doing stuff so she can plan around it.
She used to game a bunch (RPGs and video games), she beta’ed CoV for us and
really enjoyed it.

Q: What is your Junk Food of choice?

Matt Miller:
Hmm. I am not a chocolate fan, so I tend to go more for the fruit snacks. Beef
jerky is good, as are pretzels. Oh, yeah, Emperor Norton’s Sourdough Chips.
Those are my favorite. I got hooked on those when I was aero-commuting to
Burbank from San Jose every week. I’d get to the airport and buy a bag while I
waited for my plane to arrive.

Q: Do you like to cook? How complex
does that get? Now that Positron can eat, where would he go to eat out in
Paragon City?

Matt Miller:
I love to cook. I can get pretty complex. I like to think of myself as a
“semi-serious barbequer” I’ve smoked a turkey, I’ve done beer-can chicken a
bunch, as well as homemade fried chicken. If you are at all interested in
grilling, I can’t recommend this book enough: “How to Grill” by Stephen
Raichlen. I am a coal user because I prefer the taste over gas.

If Positron were to eat, he’d probably be spotted at El Super

Q: What comic books are your
favorites? Do you prefer the more mainstream books like Marvel and DC, or
are we looking at Strangers in Paradise and Johnny the Homicidal Maniac?

Matt Miller:
The comics I have been buying regularly: Action Comics, Countdown, Avengers:
Initiative, Black Panther, Cable/Deadpool, Fantastic Four, World War Hulk,
Booster Gold, Checkmate, JLA, Shadowpact, Superman/Batman, Captain America, New
Avengers, New X-Men, Sub-Mariner, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Star
Wars: Legacy, Star Wars: Rebellion, Star Wars: Dark Times, Blue Beetle, Green
Lantern Corps, Green Lantern, JSA, JLA Classified, Superman, Astonishing X-Men,
Thunderbolts, X-Men, All Star Superman, Incredible Hulk, Supergirl, Ms. Marvel,
New Warriors, Stormwatch PHD, Mighty Avengers, New Excalibur, and World War
Hulk Front Line.

As you can tell, I am more of a spandex guy. I am currently loving
the Sinestro War going down in all the Green Lantern books.

Miller, the CoH player

Q: A lot of CoH players have pet
peeves—PuGs, Influence begging, Blind Invites, bad behavior in PvP zones,
RMT spamming, etc. Do you have any? Do you sometimes wish you could break
out the magic wand and "fix" it?

Matt Miller:
My biggest pet peeve is sometimes not being able to invite a friend into a
group because everyone has sidekicks/exemplars already and that friend doesn’t
have a character of the appropriate level.

Q: What are your favorite Story
Arcs to play through?

Matt Miller:
A couple of the Villain strike forces I enjoyed very much. I also enjoyed the
Radio missions quite a bit.

Q: Atlas Park, Galaxy City, or
Mercy Island?

Matt Miller:
Mercy, Galaxy, then Atlas (reverse order of which zones I am “sick of” the
most, since I have been playing this game for longer than even our earliest
beta testers).


September 22nd

Infinity, Freedom, & Pinnacle

Mr./Ms. Paragon City & Mr./Ms. Rogue Isles Semi-Finals


All Kheld Statesman TF


In the Hive again...


PvPEC Melee Event


Moonfire & Citadel TFs

September 23rd


Sunday Night Smackdown


Artful Dodgers 1st Anniversary! Party!

Silver Mantis SF

September 29th

Justice, Champion, & Liberty

Mr./Ms. Paragon City & Mr./Ms. Rogue Isles Semi-Finals


Level 4 Battle Royal

Test Server

Offical VG Ladder Match

Matt Miller, the Lead Designer

Q: We’ve received two notes
recently. The first is that you, personally, don’t agree with the forum
community’s collective desire for Street Fighting. The second is that Statesman
(Jack Emmert) has explicitly stated that Street Fighting will be in the game
eventually. For the Street Fighting fans, can you explain why you disagree with

Matt Miller:
I don’t disagree with it. It should probably go in at some point, but we got
complaints about “yet another lethal/weapon set” with Dual Blades. Street
Fighting would be “yet another Smashing set”. In addition it was third place in
the poll, behind Dual Blades and Psionic Weaponry, so if we truly wanted to do
what the players wanted, Psi Weapons would be before Street Fighting.

Q: The vision of what City of Heroes and City of Villains were originally supposed to be, and what they are today, are all but entirely different games. What changes and additions are your favorites? What do you wish the Cryptic team could have followed through on?

Matt Miller:
I must say I enjoy the Invention system quite a bit. Jack and I always were at
an impasse on how to include “loot” into the game in a friendly, and yet comic
book way. Comic book heroes didn’t loot the bodies of their fallen foes for
gadgets or devices, but a creative-type hero might not pass up the opportunity
at collecting some special salvage from a downed opponent, since he could make
something good with that and a couple other things.

I really wish we could have done more with Epic Archetypes. I
think we put in Kheldians “too soon” because we didn’t have a solid plan on
following them up with more EATs, which is now painfully obvious to the

Q: People often look for Easter Eggs and hidden references in the game. What’s a reference you’ve put in the game about which most people do not know? (Example: A certain NPC is named for a best friend, etc.)

Matt Miller:
Detective Wright (who was replaced by Coyote in the tutorial) was a reference
to an old roommate. Derek Amberson and Gregor Richardson (Galaxy City starter
contacts) are mine and Sean Fish’s Amber characters from the Amber diceless
RPG. My father-in-law was put in as one of the random names of people you need
to rescue one mission. He likes to google his name every now and then, and gets
a kick (annoyed?) at all the CoH sites that reference the mission that ends up
in his search results.

Q: The names of Issues being chapters of novels—whose idea was it, and how hard are they to come up with? There hasn't been a comprehensive list of correct answers in the forums yet, but they are tricky to figure out. Have you ever considered making a contest out of it?

Matt Miller:
I am not even sure I should answer this one, but I will. The names of Issues
are NOT chapters of novels. Never have been, never will be. The fact that the
users have found novel chapter titles that match, or are similar to, our Issue
names is a testament to the tenacity of our users. I won’t say we haven’t been
amused by this, because we have, but we don’t go out of our way to find a
chapter title that matches our issue in theme and content. We name the issue
something cool, that’s it.

Q: If there's nothing out there, then what was that noise?

Matt Miller:
I dunno. You go check. I am going to dial 911.


October 2nd


Tanker Tuesday 3rd Anniversary

October 5th


Amazing Race II


Superfest 2

October 6th

Triumph, Guardian, & Virtue

Mr./Ms. Paragon City & Mr./Ms. Rogue Isles Semi-Finals



The City Traveler

everyone, it's me again! Isn't this exciting? The Scoop wants me to write more
articles about the City's geography and history, yay!

As a Taxibot, one of the requests that I see most often is heroes
asking in Steel Canyon, "Can someone please teleport me to Icon?" The Canyon
certainly can be a dangerous place, with all of the gang activity and those
spooky Tsoo ghosts and sorcerers. I usually don't mind ghosts so much, and I'm
really good friends with some of the sorceresses in the Cabal. Have you met my
friend Katie in Croatoa? She's so sweet, and her Aunt Amy has helped me out of
some pretty nasty binds!

Wait, what were we talking about? Oh yes, getting to Icon! Heroes
often find themselves in a little over their heads, and way too many of them
end up in the Steel Canyon Medical Center trying to traverse what I call
"Serge's Gauntlet."

is a much easier way to get to Icon's costume design services, though. Serge is
probably going to be mad at me for telling everyone this, but the easiest Icon
store to reach for lower-level heroes is actually not his store in Steel
Canyon, but Lauren's store in Independence Port. A lot of heroes forget it's
even there! To get there, take the Yellow Line monorail to Kings Row and head
west. The villains you'll see there are typically only threat levels 5 to 8.

Go through the tunnel in the western wall into Independence Port,
and the Icon store is directly in front of you, only 230 yards or so away! You
should still be very careful, though. Organized crime is on the rise in Indy
Port, and the Family and Freaks there are generally threat level 22 and 23, so
keep a sharp eye out for trouble. Even so, there are only one or two groups to
avoid instead of dozens of Outcasts and Tsoo in Steel Canyon. When heading
back, be especially careful walking past the corner of the store, as the Family
has been mugging a lot of people on the sidewalk there.

While I'm talking about Independence Port, I know what else I'll
talk about this week! A lot of you are probably familiar with Paragon City's
longest bridge, the Valor Bridge, in the western part of Independence Port.
It's over half as long as the famous Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco,
California, and was built around the same time. The Valor Bridge is named in
recognition of the valor of Atlas, who gave his life defending the bridge—and
all of Paragon City!—from an invasion of the Fifth Column during World War II.

in Atlas's honor, there is a small marker on top of the bridge's southern
tower. Heroes that can't fly or jump super high can see it, too! Just go to the
southern base of the bridge, the end that is close to Terra Volta. You'll see a
walkway that goes up beside each main cable. Take either of the walkways, and
be careful, because it takes you over 500 feet into the air with just a small
handrail to keep you from falling! I've asked the Paragon City Safety
Commission several times to put an elevator in or something, but so far they
still just have that tiny little handrail.

Anyway, the marker is on top of the tower, usually along with a
couple of members of the Family or Freakshow making trouble, so you should also
be ready to make a few arrests if you go. When you get there, though, the city
will give you a really neat exploration badge for visiting!

That's it for this column. This is fun, I hope they ask me to do
it again. If you have any special places or geographical tips that you'd like
to tell everyone about, please send me a private message at
and let me know, and be sure to tell me how you want to
be credited if I use it in a future article! And as always, if you're ever
around Infinity, please drop me a message to say hello, because I love hearing
from heroes! Until next time, byeee!



Base Showcase

This week we visit Esoteric Singularity, a Hero SG on Triumph, and
their base architect, Korith.

Supergroup Name: Esoteric Singularity

Founded: October 14, 2007

Membership: 25 (Backed by 5 real-life people)

Base Cost: We currently clock in at 3,823,610
prestige spent on the base.

Favorite Base Item: Telepads!

Least Favorite Base Item: ...I have no idea.

What would you like to have changed about the base system, and
what do you most like:

Some "limited editing" permissions would be fantastic! We just added a seventh
telepad, which I've designated to have a floating beacon—meaning it can change
to whatever is needed at the moment. Coalitions still (I hope) depend on a few
of the beacons I've agreed to set, but it's nice to have a beacon I can change
on the fly without confusing anybody.

Anything else you'd like to add about your SG, Base, or the
Base system?

We're still growing! This is the fifth major incarnation of our particular
base, and I'm excited about the shape that it continues to grow into.




Collector Interview

Profressor Blues

Professor Blues is an active participant on the art forums, and
his character, Soul Train, is well-represented with art from many of the
various artists on the boards. His other characters are making a strong showing
of their own with some fantastic interpretations by various artists. Professor
consented to take time out of his day to talk with the City Scoop.

Thank you again for taking the time to talk with me and the City Scoop. We
want to highlight art collectors as well as artists, and since you have an
incredible collection of art, I thought you would be perfect to interview.

Wow. I don't know when my collection got to “incredible.” To me, it's "my
characters" and how people have interpreted them. I suppose it's a showcase of
a lot of talent that I've been lucky enough to be able to bring together. So on
behalf of all of them, thank you.

What got you started collecting art?

Well, I'd seen a few pieces by Manuel Clavel a.k.a. Poison, including this
REALLY nice one of Rowr laid out on a tree branch, and something just clicked.
Up until that point I'd been hunting around seeing who was doing free sketches
and such, not having much luck really, and then I decided, just do it. So I
sent Poison an email asking him if he'd like to do a comic cover for Soul
Train, and the next thing I know, we're rapping on how she should be posed, the
background, it just got me psyched.

What was the first piece of art you had done of one of your characters?

This piece, by Poison.

How many works of art are in your collection? What are a few of your
favorite pieces in your gallery?

Oh goodness. I've lost count! Is that bad? And they're all favorites, really.
Although the ones that stand out are the John Becaro pieces, the Poison piece,
the Graver drawing of Lucretia de Loccia, and the Rocinate photo-manipulations
of Mistress Ohm and Soul Train. I'd mention others, but since my tastes run
towards the more adult end of the spectrum, it might not be a good idea to link
them to the Scoop.

there any artists that you would like a piece from?

I'd LOVE a piece by DarkJedi, Candra, FreyaLS, or Reiq. But they're kind of
pricey at the moment, and very, very busy, so I'm saving up. I'm very anxious
about my MMOArt pieces—I've seen bluelines for one, and the other's buried in
Gill's queue, and every time he posts something new as a Work In Progress, I'm
hoping it's one I ordered.

When you're looking for an artist, do you have a concept in mind for what
you want for the picture?

Sometimes. I tend toward pinup art and comic covers, so I look for artists that
can convey the right kind of dynamic or mood. Also I write scenes or stories
that I base my commissions on, sometimes, and so it helps to have an artist in
mind that can pull a scene out of a few written paragraphs, and not change it
around. For example, I chose Sorah for "Morning Grace" because I'd always seen
this sensuality to her pieces, and I thought she'd understand what I was
imagining in my head when I wrote the story of Persephone and Tigress getting
married. That piece really set the story up, and vice versa. Other times, I
find artists that I just gush over their sense of style, like Ebony-Chan. With
folks like her I don't need to go into details, just toss a screenshot and
character reference and say "make it happen." There's a huge level of trust
when you find an artist like that, because I'm VERY picky about my characters,
especially when it's a paid commission.

Are there any galleries that you browse looking for new artists?

Oh I haunt a whole BUNCH of people. I've got anime artists, manga artists,
photo-manipulators, Poser and Vue artists, traditional pen and ink folks,
people who do magical things with Photoshop and Illustrator and Painter…it's
all across the board. The one thing they all have in common is that they like
drawing female superheroes. -Grins- As far as art galleries are concerned, I
prowl DeviantArt, scoping out other people's favorites, and occasionally I'll
drop a search term in to see what comes up.

Any advice for beginning art collectors?

Yes. Set a budget and stick to it. It's WAY too easy to run your bank balance
down. Also, you need to have a lot of patience, especially for folks with long
queues or lots of stuff going on in their day-to-day lives. Sometimes you'll
get your commission back in a few days. With other people, it can take months,
even years, not because they're lazy, but because there's so many other
projects ahead of yours.

You're an artist as well as an art collector. What are your preferred

I'd hesitate to use the word “artist,” but I dabble a bit in Poser and Bryce
and other computer programs. I used to do a lot of stuff with a rendering
program called POV-Ray, which is where I learned how hard it is to construct a
scene from scratch elements and still make it look decent. There was no GUI to
it either, so you literally had to script everything out in a text file and
then render, and then cross your fingers that you didn't jack something up. But
even there, I'm a tyro; there's POVRAY artists that do mind-blowing things with
the program. I also did some perspective studies when I was in school, so I'd
like to think I have an eye for such things. I suppose if I hadn't discovered
computers in grade school, I might have ended up as an architect or graphic

your favorite piece that you've done or had done so far?

Oh, now that's an unfair question because they're all my favorites! I think
right now, it'd have to be
"Fatal Error"
by Graver. His interpretation of my short story/character
biography "Biomechanics" was so visceral and horrific, and yet at the same
time, beautifully rendered. The man's a magician. Plus it's one of two that I
have the original artwork, and it blows me away every time I look at it or
touch it.

Any advice for artists out there?

Yes. Keep drawing, painting, sculpting, rendering. Writing, too. Every time the
muse hits, find time to bang out a sketch or do a test render. There's way too
many people like myself who let their artistic talents lie fallow, and the next
thing you know we can't put our dreams to paper anymore. But you all CAN. And
the more you practice and push your boundaries, the more us art collectors will
knock on your door with screenshots and stories, wanting you to realize our
visions for us. And yes...we will pay you.

Thank you again, Professor.

Artist Interview

Jeremy Farlow

Hello Mr. Farlow! I am really excited to interview you. You've
become one of the pivotal artists for art-collecters on CoH and CoV. You have a
really neat style! How did you develop it?

First off, I'd like to say I am honored and humbled that you even
thought of interviewing me. And as for being a pivotal artist, I don't think I
am from what I've seen. Like the works of MMOArt and GuildHelper's. Those guys
are the pivotal artists.

I guess like so many other artists and fans of comic books and
cartoons, I created the style that I have right now by understanding, and
taking from, the artists and the respective genres that I've admired for so
many years.

Not only do I study someone's style, but I try to learn whose
style they studied from as well. For example, I've loved Jim Lee's skill and
drawing style since X-Men #1. I studied his style, and became a clone of his
for a few years of college. I learned that he, during his youth, studied the
styles of Arthur Adams and Frank Miller, so that's what I did myself. I went
back and studied them.

When did you figure out you had a talent for art?

Oh, very early on in life. Ask my parents about it, and they'll
tell you this story; When I was about three or four, I would always sit quietly
in a corner of the room, paper and pencil in hand, and I'll be drawing Superman
(that's what they say, I don't personally remember it). The odd thing about my
drawing was, I would always start with his right foot, and draw upwards.

Even as a kid, the only thing that would satisfy my hyperactive
mind is sitting down with paper and pencil and draw. That, and reading comic
books and watching cartoons and anime. But unlike other kids, I don't just
watch or read, I kind of absorb every line, every color.

What are some of your other hobbies? Do you have any collections or
interests that would surprise people?

I am a very stereotypical comic book geek. Other than my humble
collection of comic books, graphic novels and action figures, there's not much
that interests me in my field.

One of my hobbies that I've known to surprise people is that I'm a
very technologically-adept person. I love tinkering with computers. Every PC
that I've own (except for the Mac and my Powerbook), I built myself from
scratch. I also love collecting gadgets like iPods, digital cameras, etc.

I guess I'm a geek whatever side of the coin I pick.

How did you figure out the pricing on your commissions and how long
does it usually take you to finish a piece?

That's a tricky one. I'll answer the amount of time first.
Usually, if every aspect of my life is going well, I can finish a piece within
the span of three days. First day to conceptualize, draw thumbs, pick what I
like and draw the actual pencil piece. Second day, I adjust what I see that
needs to be adjusted and I ink. Third day, I adjust again what needs to be
adjusted and fixed, and I color. But my life isn't usually that easy. I find it
sometimes that when I finished with the tight pencil line art, I need to stay
away from it for about a week or so. When I go back to that drawing, I can see
it with fresh eyes, and I see if and where I went wrong and how to make
adjustments to it. If my drawing holds up to my criticism, then its all smooth
sailing from there, but when I find even the tiniest flaw that I don't like of
what I drew, I scrap it and start over. That's where the delays come in.

Sometimes, I see nothing wrong with the pencils, and when I
present it to the commissioning party, that's where it all gets delayed as
well. Either it takes them longer to respond back with an approval, or they get
back to me with all kinds of adjustments that usually will require me to
re-draw everything from scratch. So, as time goes to finish a piece, it depends
on so many factors.

As for the pricing, it pretty simple. A friend of mine told me
once that "The price you put on your artwork reflects how much you value your
skill and how much you value the amount of time you've put into acquiring those
skills." I say if you price your work cheap, then maybe you think your skills
aren't that good. Price it too high, and you actually think yourself better
than you really are.

I just hope that my price reflects how much my work is valued by
the people who've commissioned me, that's all.

What's your least favorite part of being an artist?

Definitely the procrastination stage. I believe every artist
suffers this more frequently than others. Sometimes I have to slap my self
silly to get out of that state of mind.

Do you ever get artist's block? How do you alleviate it?

Oh, hell, yes! Do I ever. And I hate it when that happens. It's
like knowing a song in your head but can't seem to remember what the title is
or who sang it. And it'll eat at you until you resolve it. It's not even funny.
It takes me days to even weeks to get myself out of that hole.

I never really found one thing that will get me out of that funk,
but the ones I do are to just get out of my studio and not see my computer or
drawing table for awhile. I might be out with some friends hanging at Starbucks
or a bar talking about everything from philosophy to a Heroes/Lost episode.
Just not anything to do with drawing.

What are your favourite materials for drawing/painting/etc? Do you
prefer digital over traditional?

-- I've always said I'm a penciller, so that's my main tools. The
ones I use are Faber Castell lead pencils ranging from a 6H, 3H, H, HB, B and a
2B. I also have 2 clutch pencils, a Rotring and a Staedler with varying lead
softness. As for paper, I usually doodle and sketch on regular A4 copy paper,
and I do my final pencil work on a 120gsm 12" x 18" sketchbook. I used to paint
on canvas with acrylics, and I used to airbrush paint using opaques.

I don't really have a preference between digital and traditional
because I'd like to think that I'm always going to be a little of both. I've
honed my skill through traditional means (as opposed to the younger generation
that have been in front of the computer ever since), and I've used those skills
to transfer my work to the digital realm. The only thing I see different
between the two is that I don't have to clean up after myself every time I
finish a piece as opposed to all the paint brushes and the nozzles of the
airbrush I had to clean, not to mention all the drops of paint I made on the
floor. LOL

What has been the most inspirational moment in your career as an
artist? Who are some artists you admire?

I don't think there has been a truly inspirational moment yet.
There are little things, but not one BIG yet. My career as a pinup artist and
illustrator is actually pretty young; just a few months shy of four years.

As for the artists that I admire, there are a lot. Jim Lee is
DEFINITELY on top, as you may have already noticed if you look closely at my
style. I also admire, like I said, Arthur Adams, Frank Miller, plus John Byrne,
Masamune Shirow, Simon Bisley, Moebius, Paulo Serpieri, Altuna, Jack Kirby,
Tsukasa Hojo (the list just goes on and on).

What's your favorite thing to draw?

I guess its pretty obvious by now. Not a 'thing' mind you. Women.
But to tell the truth, when I began drawing, a woman's body is the one thing I
had the difficult time drawing. I have, like most men do, this idealistic image
of the perfect woman, and I get frustrated that I can't flesh her out on paper.

To me, a woman is an enigma. Emotionally, intellectually,
spiritually and physically. And the reason I draw them so much is because I
want to see if I can project a woman with all the things that puzzles me about
her. Her stare, the way she smiles, the way her hands caress her body. What
does she mean by those gestures? What is she thinking? Answers to those
questions I don't have, but I love putting into imagery how I'd think a woman
would project them.

If you got stuck on a desert island with three things and one other
person for three months straight, what would it be? (No transportation off the
island now!)

Ahh, but you didn't say no impossible things. The three things
(impossible as they may seem):

1. A pencil that never needs sharpening.

2. A sketchbook that never run out of sheets.

3. A picnic basket that never runs out of food.

And as for the person? A girl that I can have an intellectual,
emotional, spiritual and physical connection with. Cheesy, right?

Do you have any advice for other artists?

Other artists, no. Because if they are true artists, then they
don't need advice from someone like me. But if you're referring to those who
are only in the beginning of their craft, just two words: Passion and patience.

To achieve the skills you need to be who you want to be, you have
to have patience. Like everything else in life, drawing is easy, if you make
known to yourself what makes it hard. But acquiring the skills aren't enough.
You have to be passionate with what you're doing, because a lot of the time
life will grind you to the floor and it will ask you to quit. Only the
passionate ones will pick themselves up and move forward.

Passion and patience.

Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

Some of our readers may not be aware of who Arctic Sun is. He has
been writing the Paragon Times and the Backgrounders since CoV beta. He’s also
one of the few people whose real name is on their forum profile and one of the
rednames who will always return a PM regardless of how silly or inane it is.

Jesse, aka Arctic Sun, has portrayed a profound respect for the
City Of story line. He’s gone so far as to PM forumites asking their opinion on
things he’s written. Jesse’s has a strong sense of ‘what is right’ in our comic
book world.

It is with great sadness that we announce he is leaving the City
Of franchise. Jesse will no doubt bring a sense of honor to his next project.
He is one of the people that brighten the world with his presence.

We wish him more than just luck with his future endeavors while we
send virtual hugs. Paragon City and the Rogue Isles will be a little darker
without its own Arctic_Sun.

/em salute Jesse

For those who wish to keep track of him, Jesse has a page
. For those who wish to drop him a line in his goodbye thread, it’s






Behind the Mask

To my loyal readers,[/B]

In the past few days my PM box got deleted. If you had sent me a private
message asking to be interviewed I need to you send me a new one. I sincerly
hate this and hope we can get back up to speed on the next few weeks.


War Patriot

Justice Server

Where do you live?

North Carolina.

Do you have any pets?

One big old cat named Bo.

What is the most interesting place you have visited?

Athens, Greece

What are your top three songs of all time?

"Smells Like Teen Spirit"- Nirvana "What If"- Creed "Toccata and
Fugue"- J.S. Bach.

What five TV shows could you not live without?

Who needs television? I have CoH and CoV to occupy my time.

What was the best book you last read?

“The Picture of Dorian Grey“

What is your favorite pop culture quote?


What other hobbies do you have?

I race slot cars and play around with art and read when time

Who is your real life hero?

The men and women of the Armed Forces.


Totally depends on the style, who's wearing them, and how good
they look on said person.

What is your home server, and why did you end up picking it as your
home server?

Justice now, though originally it was Virtue. I jumped when I came
back after a year off from school mainly due to Virtue being so heavily loaded

How were you drawn to this game?

Missed out on the Beta, and I love comics, so the game was a fit
right out of the box.

What is your favorite aspect of the game?

Hmm, besides being a super-powered being, the camaraderie and
interesting people you meet from all over the world.

Who is your namesake character, and what are they?

War Patriot, a Blaster, no matter which version—either the
original Assault Rifle/Devices or the version currently on Justice, which is
Energy/Energy. I just love being a Blaster.

Which type of character would you say is your favorite to play and

Blasters, hands down. Lots of power, but you have to actually play
with your head or you risk losing it.

How do you normally handle new challenges in the game?

It really depends on the new challenge, and if I'm soloing or have teammates.
The situation is everything before deciding how to attack something.

Which zone is your favorite?

No real favorite zone, so the one my next mission is in. I could
honestly live without the Hollows, or for that matter, Eden. I tend to avoid
those unless I HAVE to be in them.

It has been a busy year for the game so far. Do you feel that I9
and I10 have really added anything to the game and why?

I got back in about the end of I9, but the inventions seem a
double-edged sword. Really powerful stuff, but then again, what happens when
everyone has all the inventions they need? I10 is, so far, very intriguing—like
the arcs. It was nice to break the 50 out again and have something to do. I’d
still like to see a zone where it's 45+ and not just a raid zone so higher ups
can team up and not have to worry about everyone crowding into one zone because
they want to be PL'd.

What advice do you have for any new players to the game?

Pick an AT and stick with it. Nothing in the game is going to be
god mode. It's nice that way, actually. Sure, a Tank can draw a mob, but it
would take him three hours to take it down. Scrappers—well they can move and
move, but they too can get in over their heads. Defenders—each one is unique.
Learn what makes yours tick. Blasters, if you can learn to be patient, you can
do lots of damage with little in the way of getting in debt. Controllers, do
what you do best and control. Leave defending to defenders.

Any closing comments?

Just a note of thanks to my new SG, the Legends of Justice, for
taking me in and giving me a new home on Justice. The guys and gals there are a
great bunch. Team with us anytime you can. Visit the site!


Freedom Server

do you live?

Woodstock, Illinois, about forty-five minutes Northwest of

Do you have any pets?

My fiancé and I have an Imperial Shtu-zu named Chloe...Sure, she's
a girly dog, but her poop is so tiny. It's really easy to pick up.

What is the most interesting place you have visited?

St. Thomas, the U.S. Virgin Islands...I helped rebuild a school there during a
high school trip.

What are your top three songs of all time?

“California Love” - 2pac “Piano Man” - Billy Joel Right now I really like that
Timberland song, “Way I Are,” but only 'cause I can't think of another classic.

What five TV shows could you not live without?

I don't really watch that much TV, but here goes: Man vs. Wild on Discovery
Channel 24 Family Guy Venture Brothers Scrubs

What was the best book you last read?

It's a tie. The first is “Killing Pablo.” I don't remember the author, but the
book is amazing. It’s about the struggle to track and finally kill Pablo
Escobar. Simply amazing stuff. I once had a Mastermind AT based of off Pablo,
but then I found out I'm not a good Mastermind. Such is life! Right now, I'm
reading “The Hunt for Zero Point” by Nick Cook. It's a look into the secret
Nazi technology that was plundered by the Brits, Ruskies, and Americans after
WWII. Along the lines of Operation Paperclip, but much more black and secret
stuff; specifically anti-gravity technology. My next toon will be an off-shoot
of this idea.

What is your favorite pop culture quote?

It’s more of a few quotes put together, so here we go (I hope I don't butcher
it): "I swear to god I'm gonna pistol whip the next guy who says shenanigans!"
"Hey Farva, what’s that restaurant you like, you know, the one with the cheese
sticks and all the S*&t up on the walls?" "You mean Shenanigans?" "OOOHHH!"

What other hobbies do you have?

I really like to play paintball. Not so much in the woods with camo and sniper
guns, but real speedball or X-ball format. It keeps me in shape after wasting
all those hours in front of my computer playing CoV.

Who is your real life hero?

It's so typical, but it's my father. He really came from nothing when he was
growing up, and he's made a huge impact on my life over the years. He's always
there with encouragement or help whenever I need it. Now I just need to get him
a CoV account for Christmas.


It’s really hot in my room over the summer, so no. I'll send you a pic. It's

What is your home server, and why did you end up picking it as your
home server?

Freedom. It was on the top of the list when I started my account.

How were you drawn to this game?

This was my first MMO, and it was down to this or the Matrix
Online. I've been a superhero/comic fan all my life, and the massive character
creation abilities really appealed to me.

What is your favorite aspect of the game?

Interacting with people. As I said, this was my first MMO, and just the
exposure to other people to help me and talk to me was really great. I've even
met other players randomly outside the game. Class is sooo much interesting
when you can talk about AT's and power selection rather than math or English.

Who is your namesake character, and what are they?

Right now I'm obsessed with Thenos, my 44 Plant/Thorn/Mako Dominator. I have
several alts all in their late 20s with one Dark/Dark/Mu Corruptor at 43.
Dominators are so much fun for me. I like the aspect of team support and
directing the battles.

Which type of character would you say is your favorite to play and

Dominator or Corruptor. Especially my Fire/Rad. I'm too lazy to run over to
every target with Brutes and Stalkers, and pet binds make my head explode. I'd
rather just sit still and pivot. Shoot, turn, shoot, turn. Leaves my other hand
free to eat Cheetos and drink Mountain Dew.

How do you normally handle
new challenges in the game?

Massive forum research. I am a forum junkie. I research all I can about
something new and then try to add my own spin to things.

Which zone is your favorite?

RWZ right now. I LOVE both teaming with those smelly heroes and having a
massive threat to defeat. I really enjoyed epic battles in comic books like the
Infinity Gauntlet, Onslaught, etc....I think that the War Zone is the closest
we have to that right now.

What is your favorite storyline in the game?

Probably the Monster-in-the-mountain deal in Cap Au Diable. I actually never
got to run that story arc, but it sounds really interesting. I totally know
what happens because I spoiled it for myself on No Future, but whatev.

It has been a busy year for the game so far. Do you feel that I9
and I10 have really added anything to the game and why?

Pre-I9, I was really tempted by my friends to join them on WoW, but I decided
to stay on CoV because I thought Crafting was lame. Looks like the joke's on
me. Now that I am forced to craft or be killed, I seem to like it, but it
always seems like I'm three steps behind everyone else. I still don’t have any
full sets slotted, simply because I can't afford it, and I'm not really sure
that it's worth it on all of my powers. The big thing for Dominators is
Perma-dom builds (enhancing the recharge rates of our powers so domination is
up 24-7) and slotting, but I get enough domination as is. It’s up twice each
fight, and I don't see the need to spend 70,000,000 infamy to have it up all
the time. I10 is awesome, I love this expansion. The Rikti invading normal
zones was one of the best experiences I've had in any video game.

What advice do you have for any new players to the game?

Ask, ask, ask. No such thing as a stupid question. If anyone gives you a hard
time about something, they are not worth playing with anyway. We all started
out at noobs, so we shouldn't forget where we come from.

Any closing comments?

like to make a request to see a new exciting guide appear on the forums called
"How to make your significant other want to play CoV with you." Hell, I'll pay
money for it.


Virtue Server

Where do you live?[/b]

Lebanon, PA.

Do you have any pets?[/b]


What is the most interesting place you have visited?[/b]

New Orleans on Tour…it was awesome!

What are your top three songs of all time?[/b]

“We Belong” by Pat Benatar “I Know Where I've Been” from Hairspray
“My Humps,” the Alanis Morissette version!

What five TV shows could you not live without?[/b]

Hm... I can't because I ignore TV most of the time.

What was the best book you last read?[/b]

“Alias Shakespeare.”

What is your favorite pop culture quote?[/b]

“Have you ever tried turning off your TV, sitting down with your
kids, and hitting them?” -Bender of Futurama.

What other hobbies do you have?[/b]

Acting...something I turned into a career!


Only sometimes.

What is your home server, and why did you end up picking it as your
home server?[/b]

I am on Virtue because I am a roleplaying addict. I love it there
and got into several amazing groups, from Dawn Patrol to Arachnos Elite to
Vanguard Elite!

How were you drawn to this game?[/b]

Curiosity... and once I started playing, I knew it was the game
for me.

What is your favorite aspect of the game?

Character diversity...two characters can be the same, but you really hafta try
to make them that's soooo diverse!

Who is your namesake character, and what are they?[/b]

Skritchie...She is a 10 year old telepathic girl with Panda DNA
thanks to Crey Industries. She is a Mind/Empathy Controller. She started off a
fun character, but is now my main and part of Dawn Patrol!

Which type of character would you say is your favorite to play and

Controllers or Masterminds...although, I recently made a
Dominator, and I am enjoying her. I like staying back and avoiding damage.

How do you normally handle new challenges in the game?[/b]
Slowly, but with friends.

Which zone is your favorite?[/b]

Probably Pocket D or the RWZ because of the ability to team up
with anyone.

What is your favorite storyline in the game?[/b]

I love the new Rikti's sooo dynamic and fun. I also
enjoy the Praetorian storyline...several of my friends and I made our own
Praetorian Counterparts. Skritchie's counterpart is Project Arkozan: a
poison-spitting ratgirl with robotic babysitters.

What advice do you have for any new players to the game?[/b]

Be social, entertaining...but don't be a loose cannon. And the
Anti-hero thing is overdone, LOL.

Any closing comments?

I love CoH...and I hope to see you all there...look for Skritchie, Project
Arkozan, Azure Widow, and Ivy Thorne out there!

Rogue MD

Liberty Server

do you live?

Newburgh, New York. Near West Point.

Do you have any pets?

No, but I want a dog.

What is the most interesting place you have visited?

Casco, Maine. I was there when they built the world’s largest sand castle.

What are your top three songs of all time?

“This is the way I live” -Baby Boy “Beautiful Girls” -Sean Kingston Weird Al (a
lot of his songs)

What five TV shows could you not live without?

Eureka Heroes Stargate SG-1 Stargate Atlantis Big Brother (currently on season

What was the best book you last read?

“Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows.” Very good book. I can't wait for the

What is your favorite pop culture quote?

“Yippee Ki Yay Mother-“ (you know the rest) -Bruce Willis

What other hobbies do you have?

Bowling, biking, and swimming.

Who is your real life hero?

My parents. They direct me in the way to go. (And my dad helps me with


Pants_Stealer stole them from me, so I have no pants.

What is your home server, and why did you end up picking it as your
home server?

Liberty. I have no idea. I picked a random server.

How were you drawn to this game?

I've always loved watching superheroes on TV, and I was 11 when I started
playing this. At 11 years old, when you make your own superhero, that’s cool.
Now I'm 14 and still loving it.

What is your favorite aspect of the game?

To be able to "arrest" the very, very annoying Circle of Thorns.

Who is your namesake character, and what are they?

.Halloween, she is a Spines/Invulnerability/Dark Mastery Scrapper. She's pretty
cool. You don't see that build too often.

Which type of character would you say is your favorite to play and

Either Blaster or Tanker. I like up close and ranged attacks. It gives you two
different perspectives of the game.

How do you normally handle new challenges in the game?

I try to overcome them solo, and if I can't, I will try and find a team to do

Which zone is your favorite?

My favorite zone has gotta be Founder's Falls.

What is your favorite storyline in the game?

The Faultline's storyline. Boy, that was really fun...

It has been a busy year for the game so far. Do you feel that I9
and I10 have really added anything to the game and why?

Yea, they both added good stuff. I9 helped us become a little stronger because
of the IOs (and gave us a bit of a morale boost ever since ED), and I10 gave us
new badges to go after, a really fun storyline in Rikti War Zone, and a fun new

What advice do you have for any new players to the game?

One thing and one thing only: Do NOT blind invite. People HATE that.

Any closing comments?

Yes. Thank you to my cousin Camo Fire for telling me how to get
into the Behind the Mask. Oh, Pants_Stealer, can I please have my pants back?
[No, you may not! -Pantsy]





– Mars transiting the First House invigorates your body,
making you feel ready to "conquer the world," but Saturn square Mercury can
bring difficulty.

You’d like to win the lottery but today is not that day. Proceed to achieve
your goals the old fashioned way: work toward them.

– Jupiter conjunct Pluto fills you with an ambition for
prominence. You are willing to work very hard and do most anything to achieve

You’re ready for a strong teacher. Ask the hard questions, and don’t be afraid
to find the answers.

– Uranus square Pluto may bring slow, almost imperceptible
changes in your career. Projects started long ago come to fruition.

You’ve earned your reward through exceptional diligence and self-discipline.
Show you still possess those qualities. Don’t blow it all in one place.

– Mercury transiting the Ascendant accentuates your
communicative abilities.

Friends are glad to instruct you, but you have to let them know. You have your
suspicions but those will fade when you ask the right questions.

-Moon transiting the First House marks a time when your
personality and mode of living will be changeable.

You have something of value that you’ve kept hidden. Check around, it might be
worth selling now.

– Mercury trine Uranus may portent exciting changes in
your romantic life.

Love does make the world go round. And it is quite nice in a luxurious setting.
That takes work though, and of course your exquisite taste. Get busy.

- Neptune transiting the First House tunes you to the
thoughts and feelings of friends and family.

Let others know how much you appreciate their help. They knew they could depend
on you, now you know you can depend on them.


– With Saturn transiting the Second House you show a
propensity to engage in hard work to obtain financial security.

Assume responsibility for the job, and you’ll do it well. You’ll attract
attention, but you aren’t doing it for that. You’re doing it for the
satisfaction of a job well done.

– Uranus transiting the Seventh House promises to create
exciting times between partners! Romance is highlighted now, and there may be
great desire to try something new or go somewhere previously "unexplored."

Make the commitment you’ve been putting off, even if it doesn’t look like a
good investment. Appearances can be deceiving.

– Pluto transiting the Second House marks a time
when you must be judicious in personal decisions about finances.

Wait and get every cent you have coming. Make sure the check is good, and bite
all the gold coins.

– Uranus square Saturn limits your abilities to relate to

It’s hard to tell others how much you appreciate what they’ve done, but you can
if you try, so do that with the people who mean the most.

– Uranus conjunct Mars is a transit of spectacular
power, and the explosive energy may flood into any facet of your life.

Don’t waste these marvelous conditions. Begin that project you’ve been holding
off. These are good vibes in this moment. Use them.

~Handwritten page found laying atop the Horoscope submission~

Hello again, pets. I do so hope you’ve had a good week. It has been
interesting, hasn’t it? Well, let us see what the fates hold in store for you.

Villain Horrorscopes

– Dearest, you should bring pain to your enemies with your fists, not your
costume. Perhaps Facemaker would be willing to advise you.

– That sound your henchmen make when you sing for them, it is not applause.

– Have you ever heard the saying “There’s honor among thieves”? Neither have
your “friends.”

– No. my sweet, bodily functions are not a normal part of domination. Get some

– Darling, have you checked your enhancements lately? Some look to be slipping.


– The wheel of time turns. What does this mean for you? Have a backup plan for
when the hold wears off.

– Did you practice that power? It doesn’t look like it. Off to Bloody Bay with

– Dearest, I’ve always wondered, what exactly is scrapping? Does it involve
table scraps? Normally I love suffering, but this is pathetic. I’ll let you
have my table scraps.

– I’m sorry, my pet. I can’t stop laughing long enough to tell you your

– Aren’t Tankers supposed to do more than that? Well that’s alright dear.
Scrappers can always fill in for you.

– Perhaps a hobby like needlepoint would be better for you. It would save you
some embarrassment.

– You might want to consult a doctor about that rash. No, it’s not from those
Vahz last week.

~Love and Kisses


Recipe of the Week

Gentle, and not so gentle readers, I was wandering the forum the
other day when a letter was dropped into my PM box. Honestly, I was very happy
to receive a letter, my in-box has been quite lonely since the "Call to Arms"
contest ended. But this letter smelled of brown sugar and butter. The friendly
letter was from Mistress Noire, the "Official Cookie Mistress of Guardian." She
had sent me a wonderful recipe for chocolate chip cookies and gave me all sorts
of permission to re-publish it at any time. This sparked an idea, after all,
we, at the City Scoop, are all about our fellow players. Thank you, Mistress
Noire, for providing the inaugural recipe for The Recipe of the Week. Please
send me your recipes, family recipes, favorite recipes. These will be published
in a "first come" order. So, without any farther ado, here is...

Mistress Noire's Guardian Chocolate Chip Cookies

Since I am known as Guardian's cookie mistress, I am gonna live up
my name and toss a recipe your way for COOKIES!


1 cup butter, softened

1 cup white sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons hot water

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in
the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot
water. Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, chocolate chips, and nuts.
Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.

Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely





City Scoop is looking for writers and correspondents. Please PM
with samples.

is looking for recipes for "recipe of the week." PM her with your favorite

a question? Serious or funny, PM
Lady Athyna

you confused? Do you feel out of place in your life? Do others around you not
seem like the people you used to know? Do not be alarmed. Call us for a free
consultation at (555) 687-6267 ext.67. Ask for Silos.

you have an AWESOME base? PM
to set up an "Open house."

The Rogue Isles Marine Corps is looking for new Recruits.

We have been established on the Guardian Server since City of Villains went
live. We have a fully functioning base that is raid ready if/when the Cathedral
of Pain goes live, IO Factory, and Teleporters to each zone. We also have our
own website with forums on Guildportal.

We seek to expand our ranks. Promotions are awarded according to prestige
earned and will reward you with access to base storage including a large
reserve of IOs.

We also have scheduled Taskforces each weekend when possible, which are
announced on the Guildportal website

Send a /tell to @Botley, @Alpha-One or @MrsAlphaOne to be recruited.

VeronicaVenom is hosting
"V-Games" on Victory Server, every Sunday night at 8PM EST. Events include: PvP
tournaments, TF races, and Gladiator FFA. PST to VeronicaVenom.

WANTED creative players with excellent video skills to help form a CoX webTV
station. We need teams of game photographers, editors, writers, and web
designers to help with this project. If you are interested and have the skills
necessary, or if you just have questions, send a PM to

What's small, friendly, and gets the job done? Classifieds in The City Scoop.
Sell, find or buy anything. Send a PM to

SELLING life-like mechanical Ravens useful for many tasks such as
long distance couriering, location, homing, and rescue. Some units are
flight-capable and others are glider-equipped, land rocket-boosted or
translocatable. Equipped with a Virtue system. Contact @GFM for leasing and
rental information. Also seeking qualified mechaneers, effigiers, and assorted
other helpers in creation, production, and maintenance of the Iron Ravens.

The Kheldian League is a supergroup on Triumph. It is only for Warshades and
Peacebringers. We have a friendly group of players and a nice base. To join,
please email xoxman on the forums, or contact us in-game by emailing Beta Sword
PB, Enis, or Umbrastar.

The PvP Event Committee is looking for more experienced event coordinators and
planners to add to our current team. We are looking for PvPers with a general
knowledge of tournament formats and PvP tactics. We are looking for players
with evening and weekend availability who are dedicated to improving the PvP
community within the whole of CoX. We need dependable, hard-working members who
will put in extra time when needed to teach, promote, or host events game-wide.
If we just described you, please visit our website at, click "Join the PvPEC", and fill out our short
membership application to become a part of the driving force in PvP game-wide.



/em Smack

The City Scoop Staff



Edition 18 of "The City Scoop” a publication for Supers by Supers!

Leading this week with an interview with Positron, Matt Miller, this week’s scoop is full of secrets and surprises. It’s another amazing edition of player creation, and we are continually amazed at what a quality publication this is week by week. Enjoy and happy hunting!

If you would like to do a feature article, have an event covered, or join "The City Scoop" team please PM Lemur_Lad or Marcian_Tobay

If you or someone you know should be considered for ‘Behind the Mask’ Teldon or ‘Encounters’ please contact MrsAlphaOne

If you need some “Advice” contact Lady_Athyna or would like to “Ask The X” contact LiquidX

For a printable version of "The City Scoop" please send an email to the following
Please check back later!

If you have an event you would like covered by “The City Scoop” please post your events under the event forum located here: Event Forum

Discussion on the latest edition of "The City Scoop" is located here.