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Officially Unofficial Weekly Discussion #17: Fashion Faux Paws (Costume Creation)


SeraphimKensai

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Welcome to week 17. I honestly never thought I'd make it this far on these, but alas here's another one.

 

Part of the main reason that CoH has been so enduring to a lot of us has been the freedom of costume design as opposed to other MMOs keeping gear pieces trapped behind loot drops and RMT. Over the years there's been a wide variety of costumed heroes and villains and all those in-between ranging from someone just hitting the random button and rolling with it to others painstakingly spending hours in the costume creator to get everything just right.

 

What do you think about the Costume Creator? What are some strengths or weaknesses of it? What changes to it would you potentially like to see if any? How long do you spend on average per costume? What's the longest amount of time you've spent on a costume? Do you participate as a contestant or host of in-game costume contests? If so what's your experience been with them? Lastly, feel free to share a couple screenshots of your favorite costumes.

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It's a pretty good costume creator but there are some flaws that are kind of annoying:

  • Armored tops have very few actual armor pieces available for chest detail, which can lead to "tight" tops actually feeling more bulky/armored than "armored" tops sometimes. 
  • Armored tops also have fewer shoulder armor choices, similar issue as above. 
  • The system is great if you want just 2 colors across the whole costume, but if you want to add some limited "accent" colors it can sometimes be hard since every costume piece is limited to just 2 colors at most (some having just 1). Some pieces are designed such that they could visually accommodate 3+ colors (like Imperial Defense boots and gloves) if the game engine could handle it. 
  • Speaking of colors, the lack of colors like tan/creme is a bit weird since we can use those colors for skin (maybe this is to prevent "naked" toons?). 
  • Lack of modern military/tacticool costume pieces, especially for chest detail (tactical vests pls). Most soldiers made in this system look like Green Army Men or WWII guys.  
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I spend a lot of time on costumes.  I have 50+ characters and each has 6 costumes - although most are slight modifications that I then choose in play which I like best.

 

The editor is great.  

 

My biggest complaints are:

 

Not being able to adjust the "material" of a piece.  Some are shiny, some are matte, etc.  Its easy to have 2 pieces that would look good but they don't match in finish.  So they are not seamless but look like 2 different colors.

 

Not being able to to put different patterns on skin under "clothes".  If you want to make a cat character their bottom has to be tiger striped.  You cannot choose barbarian shorts with bare legs and make their bare legs tiger striped.  So you cannot put spectrum, animal fur, mummy wrappings, or other "skins" on the items that are "something + skin".  You are stuck with normal human skin.

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1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What do you think about the Costume Creator?

 

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

How long do you spend on average per costume?

 

Brainstorming can take weeks. Finally sitting down and working on a concept to completion, I'd say about an hour on average.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What's the longest amount of time you've spent on a costume?

 

Well I don't exactly time myself. Uh, I guess a couple of weeks (real time)? It's been a while since I had to spend a lot of time on 1 look. Mostly when I returned to CoH and was relearning the creator.

 

It was this one.

screenshot_230222-14-07-15.jpg.9d6e4ddb731ba2a0251b429d3345c066.jpg

 

Originally, it looked like this,

 

screenshot_230222-14-07-51.jpg.8fecc970ece66a56c44e3a1e7d6ce887.jpg

 

But after about a week or so of playing the toon, I decided I wanted the look to pop more. So I spent a couple of days combing the creator to figure out how to do that while retaining the overall feel of the concept.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

Do you participate as a contestant or host of in-game costume contests? If so what's your experience been with them?

 

I've participated in a handful and never won once.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

Lastly, feel free to share a couple screenshots of your favorite costumes.

Woo photo dump!

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 EYYszCy.jpg 1103949411_undefined-Imgur.jpg.f8c237963130099e9746ab689995431c.jpg

zUysGHl.jpg iZOFb7k.jpg

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Mainly on Excelsior. Find me in game @Spaghetti Betty.

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1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What do you think about the Costume Creator?

 

I think the costume creator is awesome.

I mean really incredible even at the start, and it has been improving since then ... even on Homecoming.

I can't say how grateful I am to be able to play a 3D MMORPG superhero game with CoH's level of complexity and detail.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What are some strengths or weaknesses of it?

 

Strengths?

The variety.

 

Weaknesses?

Sometimes I can't get parts of powers to be the colors that I want because of the available template of colors, but I find that to be  a minor issue.

Oh, and allowing players to make all white costumes and powers. I can't say how painful it is to my eyes to stare at a bunch of white on the screen. I use /macro fx0 "noparticles 1" and /macro fx1 "noparticles 0" to mitigate this issue as much as I can. Sometimes I have to leave teams/task forces because my eyes just can't handle it anymore. Just a little bit of blue in there cuts down the pain enough that I can tolerate it.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What changes to it would you potentially like to see if any?

 

Well the obvious! More customization! More costumes! Just more! more! (but this isn't really that needed, I don't use all the parts that we already have for us to use!)

...and, obviously, don't allow completely white color selection.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

How long do you spend on average per costume?

 

I'm guessing between 5 minutes and about 30 minutes max (if I'm having problems finding a costume part or really tweaking the power customization).

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What's the longest amount of time you've spent on a costume?

 

I doubt I ever spent and hour on a costume, but I'm guessing I may have taken up to 45 minutes (for one reason or another) on some costumes.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

Do you participate as a contestant or host of in-game costume contests?

 

Not any more. They are mostly on weekends.

 

I'm not sure that I ever hosted one. I probably should.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

If so what's your experience been with them?

 

All the ones I have participated in have been fine. Won some, lost a lot more. Generally, cool costumes all around.

I've seen them run by a single character and others run by supergroups with multiple judges.

The length of time for formation has generally been (from announcements to start) about 30 minutes and usually a starting time is given with the location so you have plenty of time to get there. 

Actual judging time between about 10-20 minutes would be my guess ... based on the size of the turn out and the number of judges and if the judge(s) are reading bios or not.

Declaring winners and passing out prizes usually less than 10 minutes.

Rewards vary, but I'm there for the fun of showing of my costumes and to see what costumes other players want to show off. 

It's cool to see how other people figure out to use costume parts on their characters.

 

1 hour ago, SeraphimKensai said:

Lastly, feel free to share a couple screenshots of your favorite costumes.

 

 

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You've probably seen at least one of my costumes in game unless you only play level 50 content.

 

 

af99d51a-bbd2-4995-8e58-06eb280f849a_560

 

 

 

 

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(It seems I'm involved with so much at this point that I may not be able to easily retrieve access to all the notifications)

Some players know that I have them on ignore and are likely to make posts knowing that is the case.

But the fact that I have them on ignore won't stop some of them from bullying and harassing people, because some of them love to do it. There is a group that have banded together to target forum posters they don't like. They think that this behavior is acceptable.

Ignore (in the forums) and /ignore (in-game) are tools to improve your gaming experience. Don't feel bad about using them.

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I enjoy the freedom that the costume creator provides since your "gear" is not determined by what your character is wearing. That being said there are areas that are lacking.

 

  • The colour palette - I'd rather it was an open scale rather than set colours
  • Monstrous everything - Skins/patterns availability or lack thereof on all of the monstrous pieces, especially the feet and getting them to match/blend with the legs.
  • Monstrous heads - The inability to use any of the Details options on Monstrous heads is disapointing.

Those are just what cam to mind at the moment.

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Dislike certain sounds? Silence/Modify specific sounds. Looking for modified whole powerset sfx?

Check out Michiyo's modder or Solerverse's thread.  Got a punny character? You should share it.

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3 hours ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What do you think about the Costume Creator? What are some strengths or weaknesses of it?

 

image.thumb.png.df7a57bf12156f3a2b3204db38e6352d.png

 

Best editor ever.

 

3 hours ago, SeraphimKensai said:

What changes to it would you potentially like to see if any?

 

Lighting that accurately reflects what we experience in the game.  The ability to see pet powers, so we don't have to exit the editor, summon pets, see what their powers look like and go back in to make changes.  Better belt conformance to the body (increasing the waist slider makes numerous belts clip, whereas other belts are just a hot mess, like that gunslinger belt that hovers around the body like a hula hoop).  Tighter texture and color matching between model parts (ever notice that zombie gloves and zombie chest leaves a distinct seam where the glove is, with the texture slightly misaligned and color not quite matching the skin color of the arms?  yeah, that).  Flesh tones in the costume part color index.  Fingers.  Toes.  Nipples.

 

3 hours ago, SeraphimKensai said:

How long do you spend on average per costume? What's the longest amount of time you've spent on a costume?

 

If I ever finish any, I'll let you know.

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It's a great costume creator for sure, and the recent enhancements have made it that much better. I think the only major complaint I have is the inconsistency of parts across different subtypes and body types, e..g. there might be a texture or pattern available for a top piece but not the matching bottom (or boot, or glove), or a different subclass of piece within the same part (standard boot vs. flat or stiletto). There are pieces for male and huge that aren't available for female, and vice versa. And there are a few pieces with the same name on male/huge and female but look completely different. I also wouldn't mind seeing the removal of all gender restrictions. Let male/huge wear skirts and female wear suits. Let every body type have access to all the hair and head detail options. Oh, and animal parts are very inconsistent in the coloring options.

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It's great but for a few problems, two of which are:

 

1)  Great if you want to look like like you're armored, a robot, or even an armored robot, middling for just about everything else.  I dunno, I guess maybe a lot more tights options might be helpful?

 

2)  The color palette leans very "cool", lots of blues, greens, teals and in betweens, but how many reds and oranges, yellow-oranges?

 

Oh, and I'll toss in a 3)  Nearly every "dark" option for powers is just "big black blob now with a dark red tinge around its edges."

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Clave's Sure-Fire Secrets to Enjoying City Of Heroes
Ignore those farming chores, skip your market homework, play any power sets that you want, and ignore anyone who says otherwise.
This game isn't hard work, it's easy!
Go have fun!
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On 2/22/2023 at 6:09 PM, Captain Fabulous said:

It's a great costume creator for sure, and the recent enhancements have made it that much better. I think the only major complaint I have is the inconsistency of parts across different subtypes and body types, e..g. there might be a texture or pattern available for a top piece but not the matching bottom (or boot, or glove), or a different subclass of piece within the same part (standard boot vs. flat or stiletto). There are pieces for male and huge that aren't available for female, and vice versa. And there are a few pieces with the same name on male/huge and female but look completely different. I also wouldn't mind seeing the removal of all gender restrictions. Let male/huge wear skirts and female wear suits. Let every body type have access to all the hair and head detail options. Oh, and animal parts are very inconsistent in the coloring options.

Can you clarify what you mean by female characters being able to wear suits? Because I pretty much exclusively only use the female body type, and you most certainly can wear a few different suit looks on them. Otherwise I agree with everything you've said.

 

In response to the topic in general: This game still has hands down my favorite character/costume creator. Yes, it sometimes shows its age and limitations, but for a game that's nearly 20 years old, it's still pretty damn impressive with what it's capable of. Others in the thread have already touched on my biggest pet peeves with the system, especially as someone who adores making animalistic/monster characters.

 

Most of my costumes/characters can be seen over in the post your best costumes thread, so I don't want to spam too much here. The talent of this community with the creator is so fantastic and often much more creative and better than anything I can do, lol.

 

 

screenshot_220828-20-26-04.jpg

screenshot_220828-20-25-42.jpg

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Global: @Valnara1; Discord Handle: @Valnara#0620

I primarily play on Everlasting, but you may occasionally find me on Indom. 🙂

Notable Characters: Apocolyptica - Demons/Storm MM; Lurking Monster - Human-Form WS; Environmentabot - Bots/Nature MM; Miss Fade - Ill/Traps Controller; Sister Apocalypse - Beast/Dark MM; Dr. Elaina Wrath - Plant/Rad Controller (Join the House of Wrath, and spread the word of science!); Ruff Ruff Boom - AR/Devices Blaster

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56 minutes ago, TygerDarkstorm said:

Can you clarify what you mean by female characters being able to wear suits? Because I pretty much exclusively only use the female body type, and you most certainly can wear a few different suit looks on them. Otherwise I agree with everything you've said.

 


Sorry, I should have been more clear. There are a few jacket options that aren't available for the female body type, e.g. tuxedo, while the Victorian vest is completely different.

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I LOVE the costume creator.  I started on a giant dumb looking robot Brute SS/Invul breaking out of the Zig.  Great day.  

 

I made many robots after that, spending hours trying to design interesting helmets and thematic bodies.  Love the fishbowl brains, added a new dimension to my bots....  

 

Then the undead.  Ooooooh, so sweet but simple.  I have a decent Schrek Count Orlock clone thing I have been maining for a couple years.  Started him as a Brute, Dark/Invul, then Dark Dark. then a Blaster.  I have been running him as a Corruptor since late January.  Just shy of 1000 badges.

 

I would love to see options for legs (or lack thereof) like the Freakshow with the Hover leg lower body seen in the Dev arcs.  Just a flying saucer with a couple jet effects basically. I would love to see simple full long skirst/robes for lower legs on males (and huge)  I need my Wiz action.  Both these things would take time, but exist in game.  Of course we all want more options.  I savor every new piece and how it can be added to other things to change their looks.

 

My SG held a "work" theme costume contest once.  I was going to make a fireman.  I could not get the jacket to satisfy me.  I gave up and made a lab doctor.  Phlebotomist of course.  Glad I gave up.  In walked an SG mate who somehow combined different pieces from belt shoulders and jacket to make the PERFECT firefighter jacket.  People are so creative in here.  Love to see it.  The individuality of this game is unmatched.

 

Now stop being individuals, form up, and do not rush the city hall steps in Posi 1  You're not special, do not go up there!!!!!!!!!

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1 hour ago, Captain Fabulous said:


Sorry, I should have been more clear. There are a few jacket options that aren't available for the female body type, e.g. tuxedo, while the Victorian vest is completely different.

Oh okay gotcha, that's why I was curious and asked. 🙂

Global: @Valnara1; Discord Handle: @Valnara#0620

I primarily play on Everlasting, but you may occasionally find me on Indom. 🙂

Notable Characters: Apocolyptica - Demons/Storm MM; Lurking Monster - Human-Form WS; Environmentabot - Bots/Nature MM; Miss Fade - Ill/Traps Controller; Sister Apocalypse - Beast/Dark MM; Dr. Elaina Wrath - Plant/Rad Controller (Join the House of Wrath, and spread the word of science!); Ruff Ruff Boom - AR/Devices Blaster

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On 2/24/2023 at 11:11 AM, Snarky said:

Love the fishbowl brains, added a new dimension to my bots....

I dearly love the option and haven't been able to make it work for any toon I've ever made, not once.  I have a plethora of jack-o-lantern headed toons, but no fishbowls... *sniff*

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Clave's Sure-Fire Secrets to Enjoying City Of Heroes
Ignore those farming chores, skip your market homework, play any power sets that you want, and ignore anyone who says otherwise.
This game isn't hard work, it's easy!
Go have fun!
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34 minutes ago, Clave Dark 5 said:

I dearly love the option and haven't been able to make it work for any toon I've ever made, not once.  I have a plethora of jack-o-lantern headed toons, but no fishbowls... *sniff*

My “go to” base model is a huge robot.  I have variations from steampunk to retro 60s tech to the modern slick styles.  Brain in a jar on top.  There are a few blending options with the tech space pirate backpack winning for most unusual in that it has a collar that goes outside the fish bowl and looks designed to be there. But in truth the jar needs little to blend it.  It has a gasket looking arrangement that works well.  
 

But the real “trick” that makes it work?   The story.  I have a number of backstory themes for how a brain in a jar ends up tooling around on a super powered robot.  My most unusual?   Guy gets super smashed at corporate holiday party. Gets drunkenly obnoxious asking for more ice.  One of the people he annoys is the CEO. Who happens to be a Lord of Space and Time.  The CEO takes the guys brain and installs it on a giant robotic icemaker.  And you have a ice super powered robot with a brain in a jar on top.   

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My largest want for an add on would be more body types. Toons that can be over 10feet tall. Or shorter then a foot without the need of a few billion inf and still have a huge head. Huge muscle female toons. Even fat male/female toons. 

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Ditto on dark power options being big blobs of blackness. Other than that, I have no complaints.

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2 hours ago, Yomo Kimyata said:

I would love it if there were an additional/different option to randomize that would allow you set certain parameters and then randomize within those parameters.  Hats, trenchcoat, no back items, no aura for example.

I like this idea, to sort of lock in a slot so it only randomizes other slots.

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I love the costume creator and ill spend about 10-20 minutes (rarely longer) on a character's costume if I think I'm starting to like the character.  Most new characters are given a generic costume until I get a feel for the character.  My complaint is that there are some pieces that are mutually exclusive that I have wanted to use together.

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On 2/22/2023 at 12:29 PM, FupDup said:

Speaking of colors, the lack of colors like tan/creme is a bit weird since we can use those colors for skin (maybe this is to prevent "naked" toons?). 

I remember when the devs went through and tweaked the costume and skin color palettes, and it was indeed to prevent the creation of 'nude' characters. I also remember the flailing in the forums when it was demonstrated that, with the right chest colors and the correct lighting, you could tell that the body models had nipples.

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1 hour ago, Scarlet Shocker said:

Animal heads are about 1/2 the size they should be and consequently make avis look stupid

I agree with the first half of this; for some reason, especially on the female body, they are not scaled/sized right, which *can* make them look stupid. As an avid lover of animal/monstrous type characters, you can make it work, it just requires some fiddling with the body sliders. I typically only use the female body, so I usually have to bring in the shoulders and reduce the physique some (but not too much) and they'll look a little more "normal." Or at least a little less ridiculous and out of place.

 

It would be nice to see them either be something we can adjust closer to how the bodies can be adjusted, or if a future pass can be made at them so they don't look so awkward on various versions of a body type.

Global: @Valnara1; Discord Handle: @Valnara#0620

I primarily play on Everlasting, but you may occasionally find me on Indom. 🙂

Notable Characters: Apocolyptica - Demons/Storm MM; Lurking Monster - Human-Form WS; Environmentabot - Bots/Nature MM; Miss Fade - Ill/Traps Controller; Sister Apocalypse - Beast/Dark MM; Dr. Elaina Wrath - Plant/Rad Controller (Join the House of Wrath, and spread the word of science!); Ruff Ruff Boom - AR/Devices Blaster

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10 hours ago, TygerDarkstorm said:

I agree with the first half of this; for some reason, especially on the female body, they are not scaled/sized right, which *can* make them look stupid. As an avid lover of animal/monstrous type characters, you can make it work, it just requires some fiddling with the body sliders. I typically only use the female body, so I usually have to bring in the shoulders and reduce the physique some (but not too much) and they'll look a little more "normal." Or at least a little less ridiculous and out of place.

 

It would be nice to see them either be something we can adjust closer to how the bodies can be adjusted, or if a future pass can be made at them so they don't look so awkward on various versions of a body type.

 

just give heads sliders so they can be made larger or smaller to fit the character properly

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