Originally slated for a November 2010 release date, DC Universe Online’s release date has been pushed back to Q1 of 2011. One of the first major release MMO’s scheduled to appear on both the PC and PS3 simultaneously, Sony Online Entertainment has made the courageous decision to sacrifice holiday sales in order to deliver a quality MMO experience; a fact that should be appreciated by anyone unfortunate enough to have invested in Star Wars Galaxies upon it’s initial release.
While we wont be seeing DC Universe Online under our Christmas tree this holiday season, caped crusaders everywhere have a lot to look forward to, and fans of the long-running MMO’s City of Heroes & City of Villains will soon be able to have their cake and eat it too. While We we were all hoping that the more recent City of Villains would allow us the opportunity to PVP, that didn’t happen – until now. DC Universe promises player vs. environment as well as player vs. player action.
Beta for DCUO is currently closed however online beta for both the PC and PS3 is scheduled to begin any day. Gamers who pre-order prior to November 15 are promised a beta key by Sony Online Entertainment. Testers have described the game as an “arcade style MMO”, lacking an ‘auto-attack’ option and other MMO staples, DCUO is less dependent on stats and more focused on player skill. The level cap is scheduled to release at 30 and end-game content will include elite armor and weapons resembling that of the super hero of your choice.
Graphics are said to be less than cutting edge, but it’s still in beta and the environments have a level of interactivity that will surprise most MMO players. Buildings can be scaled, phone booths can be thrown, each character has his/her own form of travel, and generally it’s described as an MMO with a lot of freedom. The depth of character customization is also said to be impressive, and unlike most MMO’s, you wont see “character clones” in the same way you might see Shamans in Warcraft.
Software developers are notorious for releasing unfinished, buggy titles with crowded servers in time to make Christmas sales. Sony has been working on this title since 2008, and delaying the release must have been a difficult decision. Let’s give Sony props for choosing the high-road and setting an example to other developers by putting the consumer first.