For many years now my primary form of recreation has been playing massively multiplayer online roleplaying games (MMORPGs). Such games offer a large amount of content to play through coupled with thousands of other players to potentially interact with. The first MMORPG I played was EverQuest (EQ). I tried Asheron's Call (AC) for a little while but my friends weren't interested in it and I wound up going back to EQ. Currently I play City of Heroes/City of Villains (CoX) and World of Warcraft (WoW).
Currently WoW is one of the most successful MMOs on the market while CoX…isn't. As is so often the case, this seems to inspire a bit of jealousy on the part of some CoX players and it's not uncommon to see flare-ups of WoW Derangement Syndrome on the CoX forums. In fact there's one going on right now as I type this about WoW ripping off CoX because Blizzard has indicated they are looking at allowing players to change factions much as CoX is looking at letting heroes and villains switch sides. Though I should note they actually aren't looking at doing the same thing. Apparently what Blizzard is considering doing is allowing people to exchange existing characters for equivalent new characters of the opposing faction. So you won't see orc and troll members of the Alliance but rather someone would exchange an orc warrior for, say, a human warrior of the same level with the same gear.
Anyway, since these threads generally consist of players who lack much experience playing the game they are putting down, I thought it might be both useful and interesting to make a series of posts comparing the two games from a more neutral vantage point.