In 2004 there weren't lots of PC games out, much less RPGs on the PC.
Nothing is new there, but this year something was new: City of Heroes.
In a very close arena if MMORPG combat there were many, more famous,
more known names. With World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XI looking
like a simingly virtual lock for readers, the staff couldn't disagree
City of Heroes not only showed the spirit of future MMORPGs, but it
gave MMORPGs a new face. Although it wasn't full of races to choose
from, City of Heroes did have a slew of customization at the
fingertips of the player. Choosing between 5 different power and stat
"archetypes" was only the start. The choice of starting powers,
costume, color, height, and mutation origins gave City of Heroes a
customization menu unlike any other game in 2004.
Throw in exciting battles with humans, monsters, and the occasional
villian and you have the recipe for an enjoyable superhero game unlike
any other. It doesn't stop there, either. With continuous special
events, constant new upgrades, and new choices of both powersets and
costumes, City of Heroes has proven that an MMORPG can be fun, fresh,
and not take itself too seriously. For those reasons, and many more,
RPGamer's staff says City of Heroes is the best PC game for 2004.
Coming in second place was the equally popular World of Warcraft. With
its cartoon-like graphics, fun gameplay, and original implementation
of game basics. However, World of Warcraft's very public server
problems seem to have set it back just enough to not be the best this
year. Better than most, World of Warcraft claims the second place spot
this year from the RPGamer staff.
Pulling up the rear is a name we all know well, Final Fantasy. Namely,
Final Fantasy XI's second expansion pack Chains of Promathia. Chains
not only continued the tradition of great graphics and fun MMORPG
play, but delivered new levels, storylines, and dungeons for all
levels. Unfortunately the much-anticipated Blue Mage class didn't get
to join the party, and Chains just wasn't much more than new levels
for more money. For that, Final Fantasy XI:Chains of Promathia only managed to be the
bridesmaid this year with a third place award.
by Jeff Walker