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Save Paragon City! Attracts Celebrity Support, Details Plan To Rescue City Of Heroes

Jonathan Lester
City of Heroes, Exclusive, NCsoft, Paragon Studios, PC games, Save Paragon City!, server shutdown

Save Paragon City! Attracts Celebrity Support, Details Plan To Rescue City Of Heroes

"City Of Heroes Is More Than Just A Game"

The dedicated City Of Heroes players behind the Save Paragon City! campaign have detailed a three-stage plan to save their beloved MMO, which has provided more than eight and a half years of dynamic adventures. Titan Network administrator and campaign figurehead Tony Vasquez told us that their efforts are endorsed by a number of heavy-hitting celebs - including Neil Gaiman and John C. Wright - and that their "optimal outcome" would be Paragon Studios becoming a standalone company. Free from NCsoft and supported by fan contributions, or aligning with another publisher, the servers could therefore stay open.

Vasquez also put out an impassioned plea for support, appealing to the wider gaming audience to appreciate how heartbreaking it would be for nine years of camaraderie and friendship to end with the "flip of a switch."

"To our community, City of Heroes is more than just a game, it is a world in which our imagination has lived for over eight and a half years, a work of art into which we have poured our creative invention," Vasquez told us. "Because of its extensive story canon and character customization options, and its flexible Mission Architect system in which players can even design custom stories, enemies and allies, and objectives, City of Heroes allows us to become part of the story more than any other game I have ever played."

"Although really, I don't want to frame this as a competition with other gamers. Anyone who has invested themselves into any creative outlet, whether it's another MMORPG, or even lovingly obsessing over cooking, or football, or mountain climbing, model railroading, a favorite author or television show, or any of the other myriad pastimes and hobbies, we hope that they can relate to how we feel about City of Heroes, how much the proposition of our passion being shut down with the flip of a switch moves and affects us."

Well-put, but how can a well-organised group of dedicated players hope to change NCSoft's mind? We previously reported that an online petition is continually growing in numbers, but Vasquez suggests that it's the tip of a networking and publicity iceberg. Their threefold plan includes increasing the visibility of the campaign (now supported by the likes of Neil Gaiman, John C. Wright and fantasy writer Mercedes Lackey), while running server side events such as a massive competitions to illustrate the size of the active player base. If NCsoft remain resolute, they'd dearly like Paragon Studios to become an independent developer or shack up with another publisher, potentially using crowd funding drives to help. Here are the details, directly from Vasquez himself.

"Our plan is threefold," he explained.

"We want to reach out and connect to everyone we can who has enthusiasm about their interest, to alert them to what we are going through, to get them to help us reach even further. We are continuing to reach out via social media to fans of the game. Several Facebook pages related to the Save Paragon City! campaign have already sprung up and membership to these and other fan pages is exploding. The Twitter account of the Titan Network, which is helping to drive the campaign, has increased by hundreds. We also continue to contact media outlets to help us spread the word. In less than a week, we have gotten over 50 articles published on gaming, comic culture, and technology blogs and news sites. We are reaching out to notable personalities and gotten some very positive response. We have gotten support from people like Hugo and Nebula award winner Neil Gaiman, science fiction author John C. Wright, fantasy novelist Mercedes Lackey, and others in the gaming and comics industry."

"The second part of our plan is to have projects and events to keep the player base motivated and letting NCsoft how committed we are to City of Heroes remaining alive. So far we have organized a letter-writing campaign. On Saturday, we are holding a "Unity Rally" and encouraging all players to attend an in-game event and costume contest, and we are encouraging all press, as well as NCsoft and former Paragon Studios employees, to attend to see how large and strong a community we are. We have also been encouraging our players express themselves creatively, which has resulted in several comics, videos, poems, songs, and other expressions of creativity. We hope to collect these works and present them as a representative sample of the dedication of our community. We also have a few more events planned that we will be discussing as "Calls to Action" on our fan sites and social media outlets."

"The third part of our plan is to contact NCsoft directly. We want to to discuss options with them directly. An optimal outcome would be the former Paragon Studios staff forming their own company and, with our financial assistance via a crowd funding effort if necessary, allowing City of Heroes to emerge alive and relatively unscathed. Another option is to allow the City of Heroes property to be sold to another publisher or development studio so that it can continue under a different banner. The important message we want NCsoft to understand is that we believe that we can all benefit from the situation. We understand if NCsoft wants to pursue other strategic goals, but we plan on working with them to find a way they can do so without sacrificing our community."

A worthy endeavour indeed, and one that we'll be keeping a close eye on over the coming months. You can head over to the Titan Network if you want to know more.

We reached out to NCsoft for comment, but received only this standard boilerplate response:

“Both NCsoft and Paragon Studios are incredibly proud of the success of City of Heroes, but unfortunately, the continued support of the franchise no longer fits within our long term goals for the company. All employees at Paragon Studios are affected by this decision, including the management team. We will begin the City of Heroes sun setting process immediately with the goal to officially stop our service offerings for the franchise on November 30, 2012. This was a very tough decision to make and wish the best for all Paragon Studio employees in their next ventures.”

We will contact them again.

Add a comment3 comments
Bladesnow  Sep. 9, 2012 at 00:36

Thank you very much for a very informative article about our efforts to convince NCsoft to work with us to make it possible for City of Heroes to continue. The rally was an amazing sight, and people have been holding vigil all day long on the site. There were several thousand heroes logged into Virtue, and at least a third as many went to the fallback server. I've heard now that 4 servers in total were capped during the rally. We are working as hard as we can to save our world. We are heroes. This is what we do.

Last edited by Bladesnow, Sep. 9, 2012 at 00:53
frostcoh  Sep. 9, 2012 at 16:53

Thanks for the publicity. We need all the help we can get!

Long live City of Heroes!

savecityofheroes  Feb. 13, 2014 at 08:57

of al lteh Bull s h i t that going on all the anti American movment from NCSOFT korea labout this City of Hroes not selloling the publishing rights had gone too far. Evil like this must be stoped at all cost! Justice must be serve4d. let freedom ring! ihad been sending messages to big corperations to ask them to join the cuase to help seave city of heroes I just finished a big letter t oa online gamming compnay I cannot say at this time. and the letter will be moved to the proper deparment head. my plan is to do what people have done and hope I can make a stronger point then any one else that tryed.
you and I cannot pay money to NCSOFT. I had bee Anti NCSOFT Since Aug 30 2012 its a fight that we cannot afford to loose. weqall must fight NCSOFT one way is let NCSOFT noted isthe world worst Korean based bblack market scam artest in teh worrld. how can NCSOFT clame Free game play on City of Hreos FOREVER Prote FOREVER! SELL THE FORD FOREVEER talk about false advertisement,.. I only see anti COH crap from teh COH Titan network forums from Tony V the letter I got is a nasty one. TONY V COH TITAN NETWROK ANTI COH ANTAI AMERICAN. PRO FOR NCSOFT ANTI KOREAN MOVMENT TO KIL THE RIGHTS OF THE PEOPLE ! KOREA HAVE NO FREEDOM OF RIGHTS?
I hate to see a big corpeation go bust like this. this time I must. I got anger! I paid f u c k i n g aobut 8 years to NNCSOFT to suppport City of Hereos with out questing it too far. howeer NCSOFT customer support had been the worst.
why is thw world so trwisted? Iwil lnever buy any NCSOFT MMORPG again!wahts wrong telling NCSOFt a thing or two,. whats wrong giving NCSOFT a piece of my mind?
sho says iahve no right to tell NCSOFr t off? HMM Tony V t what the f u c k is that? hw wants me to be up my ass ok fine. hking in my cmputer to stop me from getting accesso ntaht f u c k i n g net work? tahts my computer I paid for. ha? Tony V are you going to pay for damges? ha TONY V ? ha?
asssss hole your TONY V TITAN NETWORK YOUR WORSE THEN NCSOFT CEO ithink of the hate email h Tony V sent to me. he went to NCSOFT to kill City of heroes only to get ot me about it. and it worked. COH Died Iseen paper questing Tony V I lost the link. al ltaht ware crap his server doese.
its not a save sight to visit. go i n at your own risk.

The other questions is why ic NCSOFT not selling the publishing rights? why dose NCSOFT give a answer that I ca understand. well I do not undertand because its stupid and its worng. only a f u c k i n g hass hole fights USA and freedom of rights of the COH fans to log on to COH. ido not allow excuses like my dog ate my home work. or ser the asian market only/. or ripping off millions of fdolalrs from teh COh fans to bdevelop Guildwars 2 NCSOFT Korea and COHTITAN NETWORK going had in hand to stop the any one who wants to buy off the publishing rightso of COH? isent draft letters from my atterney to both NCSOFT Korea and NCSOFT USA twice not one responded. law papers sent adn no respond thats a Federal offence. icannot contiune by law to fight NCSOFT the best i can do is report my data. teh NCSOFt stocks dropping to far. its only a mater of time NCSoft goes under. tahts the one thing I hope for. yes I am [email protected]! I am realy **** off !!! how can th CEO sleep at nights when he murdred the rightos of the people ofthat only wants City of heroes?
he is not going to be the CEO forever .its only a mater of time when the law chartes up. some dayy justice will vbe served and I hope the punishment is going to be hard one day. I will enjoy wathcing that.

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