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We present City of Titans, a spiritual successor for the superhero MMORPG City of Heroes, being developed by Missing Worlds Media.
5,003 backers pledged $678,189 to help bring this project to life.

Gabby Cabbie

Posted by Missing Worlds Media (Creator)

There are as many stories in Titan City as there are citizens, but they all mean something to someone. Cab drivers see more of them most. And they're always willing to share. Even if you don't want to listen. Let's take a ride with this one.

The thing about life is that you gotta know where you stand. An' you gotta know where you wanna stand.

Take me f'rexample. I'm a cabbie. Been a cabbie since I turned 18. I dunno if I'd call it 'honest work' but I like it arright. Bein' a cabbie in Titan City's tough sometimes, but I wouldn't wanna live anywhere else.

Sometimes I kinda feel like I'd like to have one a' them cushy desk jobs, but not really, y'know? I'd go crazy bein' stuck in one place all the time. It'd be like school all over again, 'scept with worse traffic and longer hours. I'd just be staring out the window waiting for five o'clock to roll around.

An' I'd be stuck in one place when a cape battle breaks out.

Oh, you new to Titan City? Well hey, welcome! But yeah, big crazy fights are somethin' ya gotta take a while to get used to, y'know? I'm sure you've got some sorta, what they call it, "pre-conceived notion" 'bout how it happens, but you'll get rid of those soon enough. Really, how it works out for you depends on what you do.

See, that's one reason I don't wanna work in an office. You'll just be sittin' there mindin' your own business, fillin out expense forms or, y'know, whatever office people do. An' then this guy gets knocked through your window, an' he's bouncin' along like five hunnerd miles an hour or somethin', and he bounces off of computers and everything gets knocked ta bits. Statistically, you prolly don't get hurt - it's weird how that happens - but your day's all shot ta hell. Not where I wanna be standing.

Funny thing, though? One of my regular customers tells me there's an internet server error just for cape battles. Dunno if I believe 'im, but wouldn't that be a hoot?

Anyway. I do it a bit differnt. If I'm near a cape fight breaks out, I get a fare if I don't have one already and I hightail it outta there. You ain't gonna catch me rubbernecking. Nobody else, really; part of getting used to these things is knowing not to stay around for 'em.

Everyone else reacts different too. Street vendors? They jus' stick around. Damndest thing, they never get hurt. I hear crazy rumors someone enchants the little umbrellas on their carts. Dunno if I believe it, but I seen stranger. Once had a pack of rats going around my apartment building making sure everyone woke up an' left before trouble came. They were right, too.

Cops, medics, firefighters, those guys come running in. I tell you what, I wish I had the guts to do that sort of thing.

What? No, of course you need cops even with the capes around. Someone's gotta read somebody their rights an' take 'em to the right jail, y'know?

I mean, I know what you're thinkin', kind of. Heroes basically keep crime on the ropes. They keep people safe an' put the bad guys away. Sure, but even they insist on having duly representative, uh, y'know, people to make sure everything's good an' legal.

Why don't the normal people jus' leave? What, an' miss all this? Well, all right, I guess it's intimidatin' at first. Well, first is we've got a roaring economy - prolly what brought you here, am I right? ...oh, you got an office job? Aheh, well, they're not all bad, y'know? Just not for me. I hear the pay's good, at least.

Right, so uh...

A-anyway, as much of a mess as they can make, the supers tend to clean up after themselves. At least the heroes tend to. Some of those super-fast guys can get a lot done with just an amateur handyman's know-how, an' there's a lot of big an' tough types take part time construction jobs. Gotta pay the bills, y'know? Bein' super doesn't mean you don't gotta eat. 'Least not most times. Insurance picks up some of the cost, an' donations pick up a lot of the rest. Some businesses are willin' to soak some just to do business here, an' the fines against the bad guys tend to pick up the rest.

An' really, that's kind of the long and short of it overall. Yeah, a lot of crazy stuff happens here. Heck, most of the crazy stuff happens here. I could swear there's some sorta mole-person holiday they celebrate by invading Main Street. But over all? The heroes have it in hand. The capes keep things kinda to themselves, they don't let it spill over to us regular folk, they keep us safe an' we get a free show. And as a side effect? There's not much crime here.

Or at least, I don't think there is. There's rumors that there's more than meets the eye, especially in bad parts of town. You got a place in Aurora, that's good. Really, if you mostly stick to the north side, you should be fine. An' don't go to the industrial areas unless you really gotta.

But some of the things I hear, man.

Anyway, they keep it low, y'know? Any other city, some of the crooks we got would be running the joint. Here? They keep their heads down 'cause they don't wanna get smacked. Sure, you hear about the usual stuff, a mugging here an' there, some knucklehead knockin' over a liquor store. Just not as much, y'know? Or maybe I jus' don't notice it, what with all the bigger stuff happenin'. I dunno.

Hey, I even had someone try an' rob my car once. Dunno why he thought a cabbie would be loaded, but whatever. I kinda thought he was stupid, an' I told 'im that too. He didn't like it. He paid his fare by offerin' to not shoot me if I took him where he wanted to go, an' hey, who am I to argue with a customer? So I get to his destination, an' y'know what? Cape had been crouchin' on the roof of my car the entire trip. Jumps off an' kicks the guy in the face, down he goes. Ha! Still didn't get paid for my mileage though.

Why do the criminals come here when they have better chances somewhere else? Well, one reason's the feds. They can get pretty mean when you push 'em. The other reason? Same as you. A better economy means more money, an' that means more money to steal. Simple, right?

Anyone can make it in Titan City, good 'r bad.

An' y'know, part of it's just... this is home, arright? I grew up here, an' so'd most of the super-crooks. They don't want to conquer just any old place, they want this one, an' really, so's everyone else who lives here. This is the greatest city on Earth. Sure, lots of people say that about their home town too, but they don't got dinosaurs as part-time residents, do they?

Wait, you never heard that? Yeah, it's totally a thing. An most of 'em ain't bad either, y'know? Heck, I got one drives another cab for me. Never had an accident either, dinos got great peripheral vision, no blind spots. No foolin'! Just don't stare, arright? The way we got both eyes facing forward weirds 'em out.

Why's a dinosaur drivin' a cab? Well, he's gotta eat, don't he? Same as everybody else. Lotsa supers have day jobs around here. Gotta pay for those funny outfits somehow. And hey, some powers ain't so useful for heroics, but they're great for other stuff. There's this guy on the TCFD, he puts out fires just by bein' around 'em! Even the ones that ain't, y'know, literal fires. Great for putting out arguments. Not so good for his love life, I hear.

An' some guy's power is just bein' really smart. Or I dunno, maybe it's not a real superpower, but it sometimes seems like it with those eggheads. An' that's another thing; those guys make some really amazing jails. Everyone always wonders about that, an' don't worry; we can hold our bad guys. Hardly anyone can break out of the super-prison on the island. Even when someone does, it's noisy enough that every super comes running and bam, they're back in prison again. 'Least that's how I figure it.

Ah, so this is where you live now? Great, it's a good neighborhood. An' hey, next building over there's a sandwich shop, Liebner & Kurtzburg's, inside on the ground floor. Try it, they make everything in house. Their reuben's world famous, but I really love their Monte Christo. Here's my card. Call me when you got someplace you gotta go, I'll getcha there.

An' hey. Welcome ta Titan City.


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    1. Dreamcatcher of Phoenix Rising on

      Good piece of prose; digged the local tang you managed to flavour it with. I'd very much like to see this kind of thing in game for those of us who like story content, but from past conversations with some long-time gaming buddies it should be skippable. Reading walls of text or sitting through movies while you're locked out of your char really bugs some people. Could have this running in the background as you create your char; or answer questions about your character to create your 'history'; a la Borderlands (1) but much more interactive.

    2. pud on

      Hopefully I won't get pushed around by NPCs or cars. Or stopped dead in my tracks by a curb or shrub.

    3. Michael O. on

      I won't mind voice acting if it's done well, but that shouldn't be a priority for the day-to-day game play, at least not unless you have the time. Maybe it could be something implemented later, after the game is running and profitable and you could take the time to have people dedicated to working with voice-over actors for stuff already active while the main groups work on new content ... and only add the voice acting when it can catch up to current content.

    4. John Barefield on

      I wonder if we will be able to get inside cars, take an actual cab ride while we talk to our cabbie contact. I favor voiceovers to add voice to the game. Only with good voice acting, though. They don't have to be omnipresent.

    5. A. Glenn Albertini on

      I'm gonna be all over Titan City looking for a cab being driven by a dinosaur!

    6. Michael O. on

      /signing Having this or something like it as an intro of some kind for the game. (and it should be something that could be called up anytime, maybe have a series of zone movies that you can watch anytime after you've seen them once)

    7. Brian Jarman on

      Very cool lol. Really enjoyed that; I could just see myself in the back of that cab having that conversation lol.

    8. Missing avatar

      Joel Aelwyn on

      @Eoin: The herbivores have the advantage of peripheral vision. And of not being tempted to eat their fares. But it might be wise to pay attention to just which cab you get into, in some parts of the city...

    9. Curt Arndt on

      I'm hoping (Much like many comments before me) that nearly everything referenced in this story is on the "Short List" for features and flavor for the initial launch of CoT. Sounds like yo all have some great stuff planned. I look forward to being able to add my little piece to this great world.

    10. Missing avatar

      Harry Noell on

      We need the Dino-cabbie as a contact. Please, make this happen.

    11. Eoin Maloney on

      Wait, so all the cabby dinosaurs are herbivores? Because the predatorial ones mostly have stereoscopic vision like ours.

    12. Missing avatar

      Thunder on

      No voice over. Comic bubbles/clouds on our head and npc's head is more than enough for the comics feeling, we don't hear voices on comics, it's really a loss of time you devs can use in game mechanics, animations etc.

    13. Clinton Cowen on

      This is a great update. I love all of it. Just be aware, as others are saying, that there are some implied promises in this story :)

    14. Missing avatar

      Robert Armbruster on

      Please, please make the Mole people holiday a real thing! (Similar to the zombies every Halloween) I think that would make a great annual server event. And I love the backstory that they are celebrating their own holiday by invading the surface world.

    15. Wyatt Green on

      All that matters to me is that you guys get the game up and running. Frills like emotes, wings, certain power sets, costume parts, and voice overs can come later on. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

    16. Rich Raymer on

      I hope you all reconsider the idea of voice overs. That was the most welcome addition to the later issue in CoH, and I can imagine the VO here....

      Rich (Naq)

    17. Missing avatar

      Eric Gama Müller on

      This cabby brought more life to "capes"!
      I would be nice to have options like sitting chairs, eating/drinking stuff, living a life beyond just being a "cape".
      What better than a meeting with friends in The Batcave Bar after a boss fight! That's where the real RP come from. That's something I really missed when playing CoH!
      A part from that, our cabby mate brought the part time jobs. I see them as mini-game options to work with! Wouldn't it be cool to get your job bonus from completing a mini-game?
      So many things can be done, I hope and I belive the best will be delivered!

    18. Missing avatar

      Eric Gama Müller on

      Wow... I would love to see people gathering around a fight (specially if depending on a celebrity level or something that would make a fight "watchable").

    19. DeathSentry on

      This is what I miss from coh and look forward to in toc. So many mmos lack the immersion. Make mine City of Titans!!

    20. Safehouse - Ranger of the Phoenix Rising on

      This story rawks!

      I would love this to be an opening for one of the "paths." I can see my toon embarking on a journey like this, as he is moving to Titan City after being displaced from his home city

    21. Brett Harrison on

      LOL. My old Champions RPG in the 80's had an NPC called Bernie the Cabbie. He was a useful source of information, and sometimes, rides.

    22. Missing avatar

      ScRyiER - PhOeNiX RiSiNG on

      Excellent read. Thank You!!

    23. Titanas on

      I really wanna meet a dino-cabbie now.

    24. Missing avatar

      snate56 on

      Why, Gabby wrote it, o' course!

      I love the Astro City feeling this gives me!

      I would love it if it were the opening cinematic for every new character, not just first time players!
      I'd want to see it a number of times.

    25. Acyl on

      This was great. Who wrote it? I'd like to give applause where applause is due.

    26. Red Warlock - Phoenix Rising Ranger on

      Yet another very inspiring update! That was a great read. Looking forward to running into characters like that in the City!

    27. Ross


    28. David Guillot on

      LOL I loved the Rats story

    29. Missing avatar

      Kevin Winston on

      +1 for opening cinematic

    30. WesFoxx on

      +1 for "This would be amazing if it was the first time playing the game cinematic."

    31. Magnus Mercury on

      I really like it when the world-builders consider the "little things", like how super-fights affect the lives of normal people. It's not glamorous and most people probably don't care, but it's a nice little touch that helps bring the world alive!

    32. Zoser - Phoenix Rising Cookie Guardian on

      Thanks for showing me the ropes, Gabby. *pockets the card and tips generously*

    33. Undead Steve - Reaper of Phoenix Rising on

      Would be awesome if this was like a cinematic that played the first time you install / before you get to the login screen!

    34. Undead Steve - Reaper of Phoenix Rising on

      Great story, reminded me of some of the interactions in CoH - which made for a weird feeling - a mix of both nostalgia and excitement for City of Titans :D

    35. Mackenzie Malleck on

      That's a pretty impressive introduction to the City. Very nice work.

    36. Tom Haines on

      I really enjoyed this. It reminds me of Mervyn Pumpkinhead from the Sandman comics...

    37. Zer0Morph on

      That was an awesome read! Makes me really feel like TC is alive and a real place.