D.C. Universe Online

My wife and I finally got an Xbox One about two months ago. One of the first games I tried to play for it was one you could download for free called Marvel Heroes Omega. It is a MMORPG. They give you a list of characters to choose from, you pick one, and then you play the game as that character. I chose Blade.

The first hour or so was cool. It played a lot like the Ultimate Alliance games, except you only had a one character party, instead of four. Then, I read up on it a little bit. Now, maybe I just read it wrong, but the way it sounded to me was that the game was free to play, but if you wanted to level your character past level 10, you had to pay for it (if anyone out there plays it, please tell me if I got it wrong).

It wasn’t worth the hassle, nor the amount of space it took up on my hard drive, so I deleted it and moved on. Then, my nephew told me abiut DCUO. I was hesitant about it after the Marvel game was so disappointing, but he assured me that while you would have to pay if you wanted to get the best equipment in the game, there were no pay restrictions on leveling your character up. Plus, you are able to make up your own character on the D.C. game instead of using one of theirs.

I tried to create my character DICO. It didn’t go well. His power is…. unique, so I didn’t think I’d be able to get close to it (although, in retrospect, I probably should have looked to see if you could specialize in throwing Batarangs, which would be pretty close). Instead, I gave him hand blasters, kind of like Iron Man. I also tried to name him DICO, but, surprisingly, the name was already taken. After a couple more failed attempts, I was forced to settle for Detective DICO. 

I like it so far. 

The combat is smoother than I was expecting. The story, while not great, isn’t bad. I’ve been able to level up fairly quickly. So far, the only thing I don’t like about it is the PvP (player vs. player mode). There doesn’t seem to be a system in place to ensure that the two people fighting are at similar levels. The one time I tried it, I wailed on this guy with everything I had and barely made a dent while he could kill me in three hits. Fortunately, PvP is optional, so I don’t have to do it again if I don’t want to.

For now, I’m going to keep playing it.

What about you? Have you played either of them? What are your thoughts on them?

The New 52

It’s been a long time since I read comic books regularly. I’d say I stopped somewhere around 2005 or so. I didn’t really want to stop, but paying things like rent, car insurance, and electric became more important than seeing who Daredevil was battling that month. Eventually, I got used to not reading them, but I still would get nostalgic every once in a while and want to revisit my old books. Unfortunately, I had run out of room at my apartment and gave them to a friend of mine as a wedding present. I now kick myself for that decision. 

A few years ago, my wife and I started going to the library regularly  (which you all should do because the library is awesome). After going a couple of times, I finally realized that they had a comic book section. There were quite a few graphic novels and collections of comic book issues. Most of what they had was on the newer side, so they didn’t have any of the books I  used to own. It did give me the opportunity to catch up on some things, though.

The first thing I did was read the Mark Waid run on Daredevil. It was pretty good, but it did have some not so great moments. After that, I moved on to my next favorite character, Nightwing. That meant The New 52.

Prior to this, I had heard nothing but bad things about The New 52, most of it from die hard DC fanatics. So, I was expecting the worst when I started reading it. I didn’t get to read all of the Nightwing run (I’m pretty sure I only missed the ending of it), but it wasn’t too bad. It wasn’t as good as the old books, but it wasn’t atrocious either. Then, I read what Nightwing turned into, which was the series Grayson….

Grayson was a steaming pile of pus-filled horse crap.

In the finale of Nightwing, Dick Grayson faked his own death because he was publicly outed as Nightwing. In Grayson, he goes undercover for Batman to infiltrate a super secret spy organization named Spyral… No, I’m not making that up. Spyral? Seriously??? That may have been clever back in the 60s, but now it’s just ridiculously stupid. No spy organization would ever have the word ‘spy’ in it anywhere.

I could forgive the stupid name if the story was good. It wasn’t. 

My hope for the New 52 dwindled. I’ll admit that if I had to pay to keep reading them,  I would’ve stopped. Since they were free from the library, I gave some more of them a shot. All titles listed are ones I read at least 2 collections of (the equivalent of around 8-10 issues).

Green Arrow: Pretty much blew.

Green Lantern, New Guardians: Not half bad. I’m not a big Lantern guy, but this was better than I thought it would be. 

Suicide Squad: First book, good. Second book, suck. I was too afraid to try the third one.

Red Hood and the Outlaws: Good enough to keep me interested, but not good enough for me to say I liked it.

And finally, the one I thought I’d like the least but it ended up being better than the rest of them, except for Nightwing: 

Aquaman. 

That’s right. Aquaman. 

The only reason I even gave this a try was a guy at work told me that they went out of their way to make sure that Aquaman wasn’t a joke in The New 52. He was right. They made sure he was a force to be reckoned with.

They also addressed some of the jokes made at Aquaman’s  expense. In the first issue he walks into a seafood place and orders fish. The people in the restaurant flip out. “You’re Aquaman, you can’t eat fish!” “Aren’t they your friends?”

He tries to explain to them that he can telepathically communicate with them to give them commands, but he doesn’t have conversations with them. When they still hounded him, he asked, “What do you think I eat when I’m underwater?” and that shut them up. There were also some scenes where cops say that they’re embarrassed that Aquaman helped them catch criminals and then he saves their lives from some super baddies.

I read the first 3 collections of it and they were all good. Hopefully, they kept it up.

What about you? What’s your opinion on the New 52 books?