It's Back!? Kind of...
Over the last couple of weeks the lingering diaspora of city of heroes fans have gained a new rallying point as private server code was released publicly by a group called SCORE (Secret Cabal Of Reverse Engineers). This has unleashed the flood gates as multiple groups work towards creating their own private shards, with those that have been successfully released being flooded with thousands of users resulting in long queues and continual deployment of more servers.
The proverbial elephant in the room of course is the oft community maligned NCSoft, whose decision to shutter the still profitable MMO in 2012 left many resentful. Thus far they have been silent on the subject of private shards, despite some troll sending out fake cease and desists, the company itself has done nothing. Recently it was confirmed they are in negotiations with another group to potentially license or sell the rights to the game, which is still underway inspite of the sudden rise of private servers.
Beyond these developments are numerous 'spiritual successors' to the title that are in development currently, many of which initiated as crowdfunded projects. Fueled by a desire to see a return to the likes of Atlas Park and the Statesman, it will be interesting to see if the surprise, albeit potentially temporary, return of the original will suck the wind out of the sails of projects like the 'Ship of Heroes' and 'City of Titans'.
With the above context, I am really quite interested in what the overall fallout of this will be. I was never a diehard coh player, despite playing it off and on over the years, and with its shutdown moved on and gave it little thought. If NCSoft does nothing will it undermine the attempts to make a successor? I can't imagine the potential market is going to be able to support the three or more successor projects in the works, and if people are able to just return to the original I feel like it is going to further dilute and weaken that market.