A new player’s guide to the CoH: Freedom character generator

Note: All images are hyperlinked to the full-size versions (1450×1080)

If you wish to see all of them, you can click on this link to take you there.

And, for those of you not wanting to read through a wall of text and pics, I’ve put up a video walk-through as well.

Okay guys, have noted that some people are having problems getting through the new character generator.

So, in my infinite wisdom…


Sorry, took a minute for me to stop laughing at myself.

Anyhoo, figured I’d go through a quick run-through of the character generator for people. This way they can see what it looks like and get a basic idea how to use it. If, for some reason, your view of the Character Generator differs from this, you may be experiencing technical issues. At that point, you should be asking for help on the Technical Forum or contacting Support.

First you start out on your server screen.

From here you simply click on one of your available “Create Character” slots to get going.

This takes you to the first screen of the Character Generator.
Here is where you make a couple choices. These can all be made in pretty much any order.

First, you can choose between City of Heroes: Freedom and City of Heroes: Going Rogue. The difference is in the starting points for your character.

The Freedom choice will allow you to create a Hero or a Villain that starts on Primal Earth.

The Going Rogue choice (if it’s available to you) allows you to create a Praetorian character that starts out on Praetorian Earth and eventually moves to Primal Earth.

Second, you choose your character’s Origin. Now this is relatively pointless, but it DOES impact you in some aspects.

Your Origin will give you an Origin-specific attack. This is a very low-level attack power that’s unslottable and one you probably won’t be using much once you’re past your teens.

Your Origin will also determine what sorts of normal Enhancements you can use.

  • Training Origin enhancements can be used by anyone.
  • Dual-Origin enhancements can only be used by two particular Origin types (Like Mutation/Magic or Science/Natural).
  • Single-Origin enhancements can only be used by the Origin to which they belong (Science, Mutation, Magic, etc)

Finally, Origin will make a difference in some of your early Rewards Program-granted attacks. Specifically the first choice for Blackwand/Nemesis Staff. You can choose either or. But you’ll gain an additional effect if your origin matches with the attack (like Magic/Mutation and Blackwand).

The last choice you’ll be allowed to make here is your character’s name. You can input it at the bottom of the screen. It need not be done immediately. You have the option to choose your name at any point in the Character Generation process.

Clicking on items will cause them to enlarge and change color.
Clicking Next will take you to the Playstyle screen.

In my not-so-humble opinion this screen is relatively worthless. But I’m sure it’s useful to someone. Essentially it outlines the major playstyles in the game, though the various ATs can cross over in multiple playstyles. Tanks can tank and do melee damage. Kheldians can be ranged damage, melee damage, tanks, etc.

Choose the basic playstyle you want to move on to the next screen.

Here’s where you pick your AT type.

Once you choose your AT, you’ll see the basic rankings.
Again, most of this is fairly meaningless. At the low-levels, most of the ATs are indistinguishable. At the high levels, they can be built incredibly tough and output colossal amounts of damage. And pretty much ANY AT can solo most of the content in the game.

From here we click next and begin choosing power sets and powers.

You first come into choose your primary power set. This isn’t mandatory. You can click on the secondary and choose that first.

Essentially, click on the power set you want.

Then choose the power.

Rinse and repeat and then click next.
Here’s where we get into the Costume Generator. Hopefully you’ve set aside a bit of time. Because there’s LOTS of options in here. Some people can (and do) spend HOURS on their costume selections.

The first screen is the physique choice.

Unlike real life, there are three genders in City of Heroes.

  • Male

  • Female

  • and Huge (male)

From there you can choose your general physique with the medallions below gender choices.

Once you’ve settled on a basic physique, you can make adjustments with the slider bars below the physique medallions.

Additionally, you can rotate your character 360 degrees so you can see the front and back.

Clicking next will bring you to your costume choices.

You’ll start out with a relatively generic costume set.

Down the left side you have the costume piece choices.

Down the right, you have the option for picking colors.

If you click on Scales, you’ll get a copy of the slider bars from the physique screen earlier. Also, you’ll get a set of sliders for altering your basic facial dimensions as well. LOTS of room to customize.

I’m NOT going to go through every section. I’ll touch on them briefly, but getting pictures of THAT many sections isn’t really necessary.

The first option is to take a pre-generated costume from one of a couple dozen in the game. If you’re not really sure WHAT you want to do with the costume, these can provide a good starting point for further customizations.

Additionally there’s a button with a six-sided die on there that tells the costume generator to create something for you at random. Again, providing a starting point for further customization.

The Head Section
This section has roughly 15 choices for basic head types. In most of those the following things are universal.

  • Basic shape
  • Face (with masks, hats, helmets, makeup, etc)
  • Hair
  • Ears
  • Various Detail sections (For things like glasses, visors, gas masks, cigars, headbands, etc)

The Upper Body section.
There’s about choices for basic decoration types. In most of them the following things are universal.

  • Chest decoration (tights, jackets, vests, etc)
  • Shoulder decoration (pads, armor, spikes, etc)
  • Chest Detail decoration (symbols, ties, chestplates, bandoleers, etc)
  • Gloves
  • Belt

The Lower body section.
There’s about 7 sections in here. Anything from tights to pants, to kilts.
Three things in this section are universal.

  • Pants (tights, actual pants, shorts, dresses bikini bottoms, etc.)
  • Boots (Just about any type of footwear you can think of.)
  • Tails (If you want a tail, you add it here.)

Weapons section.
In this section, if your power selections call for a weapon (Like Katana, Broadsword, Beam Rifle, etc), you choose the appearance of your weapon here.

Back Detail section.
This is where you add capes, backpacks, etc.

Auras section.
This is where a character can choose from various auras. In addition to choosing the basic aura type, they can also choose the part(s) of the body the aura appears on and whether or not the aura is visible outside of combat.

Basically you can rotate your character 360 degrees. So you can see it from the front or back. You can also zoom in on the area you’re working on and see it up close.

Additionally, you’re given the option to save costumes or load them from pre-saved costume files. If you are one of those people who wants to join an SG with a common costume, this is an easy way of sharing the costume out.

Also, in addition to zooming, and rotating, there are two buttons that allow you to darken or brighten the background of the character generator so you can see how your costume picks look in various lighting situations. This way you don’t finish up a costume that looks fine in a dark environment and find out that in bright daylight it looks horrible.

Clicking next from here brings you into the power customization screen.

From here you have a chance to customize your primary and secondary power pools. ALL of the powers BEFORE you get them. This way, when you acquire them, they already look how you want them to look.

Now, on some power sets there just aren’t any customizations. Certain weapons-based sets fall into this.

Some of the melee and blast powers have alternate animation sets.

And anything with any type of visual effect will usually have options for:

  • Default (Just what it says on the tin.)
  • Bright (Color customized with bright colors.)
  • Dark (Color customized with dark colors.)
  • No FX (A way to eliminate some of the visual effects if you dislike them or they clash with your costume/concept.) Note: This only works in the Player vs Environment portions of the game. In Player vs Player, you’ll default back to the Default visual effects.

As before, you have the option to zoom, darken and brighten the background, rotate, save and load costumes.

Another thing that isn’t showing in these pictures are two indicators:

  • Matches color choices across all powers in a power set.
  • Matches color choices across all powers.

Now, powers with no customization will not reflect these choices.
And even powers WITH customization will not reflect these two options being toggled on until you switch the set or the power off of “Default”.

Clicking next from here brings you to the Character Stat screen. Here’s your final chance to pick a name, set your battle cry and write your character bio.

You can always alter your battle cry and bio later on. Once in the game you can click on Menu (on the Health/Endurance/Level interface) and then ID.