City of Heroes is one of those games that takes a genre and flips it over. We've all seen the Everquests and Anarchy Onlines, but this isn't one of those "Hit a button, beat a monster, get a cookie" games. No, this is one of those "Wear a mask, descend upon your enemies, CLOBBERIN' TIME" games, and it does it with quite a bit of style and flair.
City of Heroes is a game based on, well, a city with a lot of heroes. Which sounds like it would be boring, but there are MORE than enough bad guys to fight. Ranging from deranged Nazis to maniacal grave robbers, there is definitely a wide variety of faces to flatten and quite a few scenic spots to do it in. Visit scenic City of Heroes: come for the sights, stay for the two-fisted justice! How do you get there? Let me demonstrate…
You start by making a few simple choices of what background and type of hero you would like to be. There are five choices in each category that each come with a unique set of advantages and disadvantages. For instance, my character, Shady Deal, is a Mutant Scrapper who has decent hit points, does a lot of damage, but doesn't have a ranged attack, so no matter what I'm going to be hit by something. Depending on what route you choose, the abilities vary greatly.
The background choices serve mostly to give your character some color. Like me, you could go the route of a Mutant CPA who is out on the street seeking revenge, or possibly a scientist who really doesn't like street thugs. No matter what your background may be, the power sets come from your choice of Archetype.
There are five different Archetypes to choose from and we'll go into some detail about those below, but first a few things to know about them. The Archetypes are what decide what power sets you have access to as well as your hit points/damage output. They also seriously affect your gameplay; this is basically where you would be choosing a class in any other game.
The Archetypes you can choose from are: Blaster, Controller, Defender, Scrapper and Tanker. Among those different Archetypes you can basically divide it a bit more, by pointing out the offensive and defensive heroes. We'll start with the offensive heroes.