Superhero online game City of Heroes added Cyborg "Booster Packs" this week, giving players a bunch of themed costume parts and an insane self-destruct power. We've also got info on the game's very own Hero-con 08, plus news on the highly anticipated free expansion, Issue 13: Architect.The self-destruct power features a warning siren and a huge knockback explosion that pretty much vaporizes any enemies standing near you. Of course, it leaves you dead and untargetable, so you can't be brought back to life unless a teammate has an area of effect rez. There are videos of Self-Destruct in action here and here. Hero-Con 08 will be held in the Bay Area (Santa Clara, specifically) on Oct. 18. Attendees will get to see panel discussions, workshops and Q&A sessions with the game developers, participate in live mission events, win prizes in contests and get a bunch of swag. Plus, their characters will get an in-game power, a toggled Harlequin costume. Not enough? Anyone who registers and attends will gain access to City of Heroes' closed betas, including the beta for the upcoming Issue 13. Speaking of Issue 13, it's finally been announced. Subtitled "Architect," it will include the usual costume additions, new story arcs and missions, and improved zones. There will also be two new power sets, Shields and Pain Domination (which is villains-only). Then there's the new Merit Rewards, which haven't been fully explained yet, and the all-new "Day Job" system. This allows your character to gain abilities and badge credit depending on where you're standing when you log off. Log off in a hospital, gain healing related powers. Log out in the university, gain research rewards. And we haven't even mentioned the biggest aspect of Issue 13 yet - player designed missions. The developers are promising a rich, full-featured designer that will include actual map design, enemy spawn design, plus narration and dialogue creation. It will supposedly not be exploitable, and will have a rating system so the most well-done missions can rise to the top. Image by: NCSoft.


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