Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Vision Live in Game + This Week's Specials!

Here's a quick screenshot of this week's specials:

HEY! It's everybody's favorite android, Vision! Any android that can go against his programming is a friend of mine. :)

There's also a couple new card quests in there and a couple 300 gold hero specials going on too! I still need to pick up Thor. :) I've been extremely busy lately, but it looks like I need to find enough time to farm up a few tickets and take advantage of these specials. O.O

What have you all been up to? Anyone purchased Vision yet and have some comments to share on his playstyle? Wikispaces seems to indicate that he has an interesting armor boost skill as his second power. Interesting!

Happy dueling!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Iron Man MK I and New Sale Items

Oh, this is awesome news for Jr. SHIELD Agents (not so much for those who aren't). Check out the new sale items this week!

For those who subscribe, it's so nice that they added Iron Man MK I to their list of silver purchasable heroes. A mere 2,000 silver buys this awesome guy! (I'm also happy I was able to snag Red She Hulk for 300 gold as well . . . bargain!)

I had a blast lumbering around as Iron Man this morning. :) And that's exactly how it feels.

HAHA! He's awesome. He's a double jumper hero with no ability to fly. You can almost feel the stiffness of his armor as you bound around town.

Yay! My first token with MK I! I'll have to wait to take him on a test drive out in a mission since I have to go to work now. Looks like there's already a page for him over on Wikispaces.

Happy dueling!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Need for Community Management

So, you all may have noticed my posting dropping to a crawl the past weeks. This is due to a couple of reasons. One, I just simply got busy. I've been playing the game, I just haven't had the time to write about it. Two, I lost my contact on the inside at The Amazing Society. She left for a mobile phone game company.

This is not an uncommon thing in the game industry. People come and go all the time, and sometimes a majority of a game's work force will be laid off after a game launches. I don't think there were layoffs involved here and SHSO is well past launch, but in general a lot of time is spent up front on a game, and then after it publishes, the developer (The Amazing Society in this case) usually scales back the crew a bit.

MMOs are a bit different, however, because there is supposed to be an "eternal" (I put that in quotes because eternal really just means however long the MMO can hold out) release cycle. For us in SHSO that seems to mostly come in the form of new heroes, missions, and card packs. (I'd love to see a new zone or two besides the four we have to roam around in currently.)

Usually MMOs of any grandeur will have a community manager in charge of taking people like me (and wherever the fans may be located--Facebook, Twitter, forums, podcasts, etc.) along for the ride while the game continues its life cycle.

My old contact did a great job of that. She actually tracked me down on another blog of mine where I had talked a bit about Super Hero Squad Online, and she supplied me with a few codes to give away in a raffle. I loved that, and I loved that she was willing to work with me on providing an upper hand on news about the game. To me that's exactly how a Community Manager should interface with a game blogger like myself. It was fun! Fun enough that I started up this blog separate from my other blog. My time spent writing about SHSO deserved a home of its own. Thus, the Time Hound Times was born.

Unfortunately my old contact was doing two jobs (if not three). Her real job was to be the Senior Producer for the game, not solely the Community Manager. The previous "dedicated" Community Manager for Super Hero Squad Online jetted to go work for Pokemon (. . . at least that's what her LinkedIn page seemed to say).

With my contact's departure back in the first part of March, she told me she passed the mantle on to someone else remaining at The Amazing Society, who probably also is working the weight of a couple jobs (Looks like they've been keeping Facebook up to date pretty good though). I honestly don't know since no one has reached out to me from TAS to say hello. (*wave* if you're reading this TAS. Please say hello!)

So, long story short, I'm sorry I'm not able to provide you all with a quick scoop on info or hold a contest with company sponsored gifts (loved giving away a free hero--that was awesome). Until someone says hello and I get back in the loop, I'll do my best to keep up with news, but it probably won't be like it was around here a couple months ago.

I don't know what the relationship is like between Gazillion and TAS, but I am guessing most of the Marketing for the game is done by Gazillion and the brunt work is done by TAS. It'd be nice to get some community management again . . . whether that comes from Gaz or TAS, right? right.

Happy dueling

Monday, March 19, 2012

Catching up with the Time Hound -- Avengers oh my!

Hello! *wave*

It's been a while since I've posted anything here. How have you all been? I've been busy, but I'm still finding time to collect and level heroes in Super Hero Squad Online. Here's the recent additions of mine to the max hero club:

1- Valkyrie -- Tea time anyone?

2- Luke Cage -- Tiara and a fro go together like chocolate and peanut butter, yo.

3- Spider Woman -- Always reading up on the latest top secret stuffs.

You might have received the notice in the mail about all the Avengers excitement buzzing in SHSO these days.

To those ends, I'm sure you know by now that Captain America in his Super Soldier getup is now on sale in the gold shop:

And as a special bonus, looks like Gazillion/The Amazing Society put American Dream on special as well!

With all this Captain America pride going on here lately, you know the best thing to do is hold a Captain America power emote party whenever the mood strikes you. :)

I've been noticing a lot of that happening lately, and yup, I've definitely been joining in whenever one of those emote throwdown parties happen. :)

Hope you all are still enjoying these reduced hero costs as much as I am. I think I'll go update my price guide.

One last thing, Uber wife and I recorded another episode of Happy Dueling Hour a couple weeks ago, and we once again mention Super Hero Squad Online among all the other stuff we talk about. Take a listen if you'd like. Hop to the 42:49 minute mark to hear what we have to say about SHSO. :)

Happy Dueling!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pure Elecktra and New Splash Screen Shows New Heroes

A new build of Super Hero Squad Online went into the game today and with it came the new Pure Elecktra hero.

I actually thought she would have come into the game earlier since this was one of the heroes I reviewed for my Beckett's Game Strategyst article I wrote. Good to see her coming in at 300 gold. She's marked as a sale, so I'm not exactly sure what her final resting price will be.

Also, we got a couple new loading screens that show off what will most likely be five upcoming heroes.

Check it out!

That looks to be Captain Steve Rogers, Hawkeye, Vision, Original Iron Man, and Ant Man? Nice!

Also, this loading screen suggests a new Mole Man mission.

Can't wait to see those super heroes in action!

Happy Dueling

Monday, March 5, 2012

Max level Ghost rider, Bucky Cap, and Bunnisher! Make your own goals past FF Spidey?

Last week was super fun as I kept on playing with these new heroes, finished off three max levels with them, and added a few more levels to my overall squad level:

BOOM! With all that leveling, my total squad level is approaching 700 now! I have to say, I love Ghost Rider and Punisher's Max Level emotes! LOL!

Bunnisher . . . just Bunnisher. Come on, that's amazing. HAHAHA! Now we know what Matt was working on there at the Amazing Society back in February. ;)

And Ghost Rider on a tricycle!

I think that should be my new expression of shock at work when someone tells me something crazy.


Speaking of crazy. I don't know if you guys feel this way, but after you finish out the challenge quest line, you kind of have to make your own goals and find a way to reward yourself, right? What do you guys do to keep it up?

Also, I'd love to see some player-created challenges past FF Spiderman . . . just to see what we could come up with!

- What would be the dividing points for squad level rewards?
- What five accomplishments would you have to do for each major challenge level?
- What hero would you award for completing the challenge?

Let me know what you think.

Happy dueling!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Goodies Code!

Just got this email a couple hours ago, and I thought I'd put up here and pass it along in case you hadn't seen it yet. Check it out!

Yup! A free level and some fun stuff in your bags if you type in the super hero squad free code "GOODIES"! WOOT!

After redeeming the code, log in and head to your backpack to use it.

Just don't waste the heroup potion on the early levels of your hero! ;)

Happy dueling

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Kingpin, Luke Cage, and leveling news from me!

Stopped by the shop today in game and saw a couple new things for sale. First up, the Kingpin mission!

Awesome! I'd like to break out my Daredevil and Spider-Man heroes for this one and give it a spin. I'm sure if I poured through some of my old comic books I could find a kingpin issue or two. He's a classic, and it should be fun to lay the smack down in that direction. ;)

Also saw everyone's favorite Hero for Hire up in the shop for the bargain price of 300 gold!

Rock on, Luke Cage! If that's the going rate for a former Hero for Hire, sign me up! ;)

I need a few more heroes! I'm starting to run out of unmaxxed heroes at the moment. Speaking of that, Nova, aka the ultimate super space cop, just maxxed out the other day:

Don't you just hear the words, "It's a SUPERNOVA!" when you look at him? I'll admit, I've been turning the voice acting up a bit lately. (Opening doors still bugs me, but everything else is ok. I like being able to hear what heroes are near me around town. :))

Super Nova's play style in missions seems pretty standard fare . . . seems to be mostly "just out of" melee for the first part of his attack combo and finally coming in a little closer at the end as he slides forward. I'm not terribly familiar with his comic book line, but he seems to have an interesting story to him.

Of other heroes I'm not very familiar with, I decided to purchase Spider-Woman!

The moment in game that I saw she could not only wall crawl, but also could fly, I knew I wanted this hero in my collection. Awesome! Maybe I'll use my current Valkyrie and Spider-Woman characters to convince my daughter into playing this game with me again. ;)

Happy Dueling!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


SNAFY, you ask?  Sure!  Situation Normal, All For You!

Most of you noticed that the prices for the Heroes have dropped drastically during this "sale."  In fact the heroes marked as "sale" are going for 300 instead of their usual 350.  But the real sale that seems to be going on in the background are not from these "sale" heroes at all!  The real sale is how all of the prices on the other heroes have dropped from 1000 gold to 600 gold, or from 1,600 to 1,200 gold.  Now, a 50 gold cut in price is good, but a 400 gold cut in price is outstanding!

So, I asked my contact at The Amazing Society what's the deal?  Is this a bug? Why aren't the other heroes showing a Sale sign?  The answer I got back was surprising.  "Working as intended" Yup, these prices on heroes may in fact be their new price . . . period!  That isn't 100 percent yet though.  They're still looking at metrics and data behind the scenes to see how this affects certain . . . I don't know . . . factors(?) before making some of this official, but I personally find this a surprising and welcome move. I hope that is the case!

I'll be keeping an eye on those prices and continuing my daily play of Super Hero Squad Online.  From the feedback I got on my thread about the "sale," it looks to me like the players are welcoming the price breaks and buying up heroes left and right.

Happy Dueling!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Sale, article, Punisher, and Max FF Spidey

First thing today, we have a sale on all the 350 gold heroes in the shop! They are all currently going for 300 gold.

The only one of those I haven't purchased yet is Valkyrie. Hmm, I may go ahead and save the 50 gold there and purchase her, but I really have my eyes set on Spider Woman. Hmmm.

Next, wrote a great intro article to Super Hero Squad Online yesterday. If you're feeling it, you should add to the comments on this post. Good time to support our favorite game, and it's nice to have MMORPG write an article (that's some prime coverage).

My favorite quote from the article is, "The colors and environments of MSHSO are vibrant as would be expected. What is surprising is the obvious effort that Gazillion and The Amazing Society have put into making the spell/hero effects really impressive looking. Dr. Doom’s lightning sizzles with awesome purple power. Wolverine’s roar is loud and literally earth shaking. Phoenix’s AOE Hero Up attack dazzles in fiery fury (and does some pretty amazing damage too!). I was very impressed overall."

My favorite quote from the comments is, "One of the metagames that would really appeal to adults is the card playing "PvP" battles. Building decks with the right combo of cards is an elegant and complex work. :)"

I like Suzie Ford, the author of the article. I actually met her in real life once, but that's a story for a different time.

I bought Punisher yesterday!

He's all about the guns there, isn't he? I've been filming his play a bit, and I'll probably put together a short game play video of him soon. Pretty much it feels like Punisher just wants to be in the thick of the battle. His normal attack has him firing off rounds in every direction and his heroup attack has him blasting a hole in the earth all around him. Good times!

My Future Foundation Spidey finally hit max level!

Haha! Took me long enough! FF Spidey is an absolute blast to play. He's a really nice reward for finishing your challenge quest series. His attacks in combat are solid, he makes travel around town super fast, he's hilarious, and you're sure to get friend invite after friend invite when you're running around with him because it's just a really cool status symbol in game as well.

And that's all I've got for today. Let me know what you're up to!

Happy Dueling!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

HOT!! Punisher LIVE tomorrow and Deadpool card quest

Got 600 gold handy? I hope you do because that's the price tag I'm hearing Punisher will go for, and the release date? Inside sources tell me you'll see Punisher in the shop shortly after midnight tonight!

It's going to take me a couple more days of spinning the wheel to earn my Punisher (I did just get Ghost Rider after all), but I'm psyched to add him to my squad. :)

Also of note, the Deadpool card quests will be introduced to the game after tonight as well. I'm not 100 percent sure on the price, but I would expect the standard gold pricing given to most card quests to apply here.

Get ready for tomorrow, squaddies!!

Happy dueling

Ghost Rider at Last!

WOOT! Made a new purchase yesterday! :)

After just a few trips to the Prize Ticket wheel, I finally had my (introductory price of) 1000 gold and was ready to buy mr. flaming skull head himself!

I decided to video just a bit of me running a daily mission with him and trying out his emotes for the first time.

I couldn't quite get the hang of positioning his motorcycle to take out a strand of enemies. In fact, the line he makes with his bike seemed really narrow to me. But, throwing that chain around was super fun. I love the crowd thrashing he can deliver!

Hope to experiment more with him over the next few levels and see which power attack is my favorite. For coolness factor though, I'm loving Ghost Rider! (Now if I could just shake this feeling like Nicolas Cage is hovering over my shoulder ...)

Happy dueling!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Invisible Woman, Shadowcat, Iron Patriot, and Wasp (TO THE MAX)

As predicted, I had a few more heroes max out over the weekend. WOOT!

First up, Invisible Woman.

Maxing out IW also unlocked her third power emote, which is the best way to walk places I've discovered.

Why run places when you can just plod your way through the game laying waste to all in your path?

Next, Ms. Shadowcat.

It's so awesome she gets to bring out Lockheed to blast stuff as her first power. Lockheed is awesome! He should be his own super hero squad character! He was a member of Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers after all. ;)

Did you know you can read all four issues of Pet Avengers for free online at Marvel's website? LOL! Here's links!

Pet Avengers 1
Pet Avengers 2
Pet Avengers 3
Pet Avengers 4

Good to get Shadowcat finally leveled to max. :) Did you know Shadowcat and Illayana were roomies back at the X-men Academy? See! More evidence they should put a couple New Mutants into the game! ;)

Iron Patriot was third to level to max. Um, I did take a picture of Iron Patriot hitting max, but . . . uh . . . it got moofed, so . . .

This JR SHIELD hero was also good to finally put to bed as a max level hero. I really like Iron Patriot's first star power the most in missions. For the cost of one star, there's a lot of push and shove crowd control. That may just be me though. :)

As for playing the hero himself? It feels kind of awesome to know you get to play a highly confused bad guy in SHSO. Norman's wacky, which makes for a lot of fun possibilities with this character.

Finally, Wasp hit max level:

I have to say her final power emote is officially awesome.

SHSO has a couple of reoccurring jokes running through it, one of them being pigeons. A handful of hero emotes have something to do with pigeons, and Wasp riding on a pigeon cowgirl style cracked me up. :)

Playing all these heroes was fun, and I enjoyed each and every one for different reasons. Hope you're all having fun with your squads!

Happy Dueling

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Jr. S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Again! More Max Heroes :)

That's right! I'm back in Jr. SHIELD agent status again. :) That meant it was time to finally get Hulkbuster here to max level!

He was only 200 experience points from 11th anyway. ;-)

I still have a few levels left to gain on Shadowcat and Iron Patriot out of my Jr. SHIELD agents.

From my main pool of heroes, it was also time for Reptil to hit max level.

Yay, Reptil! Reptil is great. I've always been more of a New Mutant reader than a Avengers Academy reader, but he may convert me, yet! (Would it kill 'em to throw Illyana in the game to hang out with her brother, Colossus? ;))

Also of note, I finally saved up enough silver to purchase Bucky here:

Last time I had that much silver in my bank account, I blew it all on Jr SHIELD heroes until I had nothing left. hehe. Egads, how many more spins until I get the surfers?! I really do need an auto-spin feature.

Next up to level to Max for me will be Invisible Woman, Shadowcat, Iron Patriot, and Wasp. They're all around ninth level as of today. I'm shooting to get Ghost Rider before he turns 1,200 gold. :)

Oh! And before I forget, one of my friends was finally nice enough to invite me to the Bullseye mission finally! And what's this? Punisher as the narrator?


The mission itself didn't seem to bad, but yeah, you really don't want to get caught in the path of those lasers. There's a couple giant ones you have to avoid while fighting Bullseye that's incredibly dangerous.

Hope you all are having fun with Super Hero Squad Online!

Happy Dueling!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

GHOST2012 Winners!

With the release of Ghost Rider today also comes a list of all those who won the GHOST2012 Code giveaway. The Amazing Society was kind enough to pass along the names of all the winning squads.

Crazy Ferocious Bat
Confusing Admiral
Breaking Skull Prime
Mister Surfer Architect
Warlike Ultra Paladin
Rover Tiger
Grand Prince Rover
Baron King Captain
King Kraken Racer
Lieutenant Despair
Invincible Captain
Blur Fire Tiger
Icy Defender Mason
Mr. Confused Cowboy
Count Intellect Emperor
Count Egret Wyrm
Colossal Magnificent Berserker
Mist Iguana Racer
Fast Invincible Panther
General Beast Tiger
Nova Admiral Machine
Magnetic Hornet Nightmare
Battle Shark Wyrm
Commander Bio Tank
Forest Pirate Prophet
Master Emerald Dart
Toxic Breaker
Spectacular Desert Weevil
Bionic Plains Ghost
Iron Gardener Crane
Loud Martian Driver
Defending Sailing Skull
Marvelous Samurai Bunny
King Boxing Mosquito
Hornet General
Dazzle Omega Crow
Sergeant Rex Drool
Rebel Sea Bane
Impossible Tornado Crusader
Chihuahua Fish
Magnetic Space Bureaucrat
Nova Snipping Ghost
Primal Torch Roamer
Sergeant Golem Smasher
Duke Bionic Berserker
Aqua Theta Sorceress
Simple Spy Librarian
Squire Sea Colossus
Fantastic Galaxy Marmot
Impossible Singing Cyclone

Congrats to all the winners! (Ohhhh, we're all so jealous. Hehe)

Happy Dueling

New Card Quests! Ghostrider Hero!

To celebrate Valentine's Day yesterday, The Amazing Society placed four new card quests into the shop:

It's everyone's favorite couple, Daredevil and Elektra! Awww! I've added those to the Price guide up top. Take a look!

Also this morning there's a new 1,000 gold hero available for purchase. It's the long anticipated Ghost Rider!

Oh man, that's going to push me over the edge I think. I might need to resubscribe so I can try him out. So awesome. If any of my readers purchases Ghost Rider today, please let us know about it!

Happy dueling!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Price Guide!

I've added a new button up top:

This leads to a SHSO Price Guide I just created and uploaded to Google Docs. It's simply a list of all the items you can purchase in Super Hero Squad Online as of 14 February 2012 (I'll try to keep it up to date). Hopefully it'll be something you can take a quick look at if you're ever wanting to just get an item price without logging into the game.

How'd this come about? Well, I was starting a new character to see how long it would take me to earn 200 gold for the new Bullseye Mission (just curious I suppose) and while enjoying all the new player challenges all over again, I realized that some of this information might be helpful to a new player.

Side note of the day!: If you're not familiar with our Happy Dueling Hour monthly podcast, please go take a listen! Although the majority of the time we talk about Wizard101, I do mention my recent adventures in Super Hero Squad Online along with the other games we play (it's mainly just for fun and to be goofy): If you've got an hour to kill with nothing better to listen to, go check it out!

Thanks and happy dueling!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Three More Max Heroes, Some Reactions, and Badge Improvements Please!

The latest updates are now live in the game and I think it's good news that the introductory price of classic daredevil is a bargain as far as gold priced heroes go!

You can also see pictured there the new Bullseye mission. Anyone tried that?

Also good news is that you can turn these new voices down or off completely:

They aren't that bad, but extended play with them can be a bit . . . distracting? There were some interesting choices made that I'm not sure I like. I don't really think my character should say something every time he/she opens a door or heads to the sky. I wish the frequency was tuned down just a little bit. Like maybe every tenth time I opened a door it would say something or every fifth time I hit a flight spot. Either way, that volume slider for voices is a welcome sight. I was kind of getting annoyed at Invisible Woman this morning as she wondering "Hmm, I wonder what's in here" while I opened the door to the Baxter building. yeah. She's not that ditsy.

Anyway, I do have three more max heroes in my back pocket!

First up is Street Clothes Wolverine:

Next to ding max was The Beast:

And finally, just this morning I dinged max on The Human Torch:

All three heroes were fun to play. Beast's double jump makes him great around town. Human Torch has one of the coolest looks in the game. Street Clothes Wolverine was free! ;p Give me a free hero, and I will play it to max!

I played both Beast and Wolverine in missions (and they were fun), but I think all I did while leveling The Human Torch was collect tokens, kill troublebots, and click chasables. I need to play a few missions with him still. That's on my "fun agenda" in game. hehe.

Here's a quick idea: I wish earning badges in game meant more. Like, if I unlocked a badge on a hero, it should equal something like 5-10 gold or a bunch of tickets. It would really give me some extra incentive to revisit my heroes after they've hit max. Tying rewards (any kind of reward) to unlocking badges would be such an awesome motivator.

What do you think of the new voiceovers and updates?

Happy Dueling!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Voice-overs Incoming!!

The press release went out just last night. The big news? Voice-overs are coming to Super Hero Squad Online!

Here's a link to MMORPG, who picked up the story this morning: click!

It'll be interesting to see how this is applied in SHSO. The good news here is that the Super Hero Squad Show has some extremely talented voice actors. Tom Kenny who does the voice of Iron Man for the show is also the guy behind the genius of Spongebob Squarepants.

Alimi Ballard who does the voice of Falcon has a long list of credits as well. What I like about Alimi is that he's rumored to be a huge comic collector himself!

Charlie Adler who does Doctor Doom in the shows is probably one of the hardest working Voice actors in the biz. The man has worked for everything from Aladdin to A Pup Named Scooby Doo and back again.

In other words, this is a lot of excellent talent coming soon to our little online world! I can't wait to see how it's actually applied in game.

Happy Dueling!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A Window into The Amazing Society!

The Amazing Society sounds like a pretty cool company. Have you ever checked out their website? There's just so much creativity going on there, it's awesome. :)

I was haunting Google Maps the other day wondering what it would be like to visit their studios someday. Looks like they rent a space in this building here. Nice place!

If only we could peer inside those windows, right? Well, thanks to the Amazing Society's Senior Producer, Ellen B., I've got some great pictures to show you all. Here's what she sent over . . .

Ellen describes this shot as THE TOY PHOTO!

Having toys at the ready is just a part of the job at The Amazing Society. You gotta have some toys, right? Apparently everybody has their own personal collection of toys at their desk.

This next picture shows the driving force behind all that creativity at TAS . . . coffeebot. ;)

I for one, welcome our new evil overlord, coffeebot.

Lore junkies rejoice! The people at The Amazing Society have a bookshelf chock full of Marvel reference material to read through.

Looks like I could spend hours at this thing reading up on all the lore that goes into Super Hero Squad Online.

This is Kaitlin. Everybody say hi to Kaitlin! *wave*

Miss Kaitlin here is one of the animators that works on Super Hero Squad Online. She's showing off one of her latest creations. :) Keep up the good work, Kaitlin! Angel is a blast to play.

And I saved the best for last. This is Matt, who is the Art Director at The Amazing Society.

Hmmmm. What could this be that Matt is working on today? Looks an awful lot like Punisher, and you know what . . . Punisher has a friend! What the heck?! Awesome! HAHA! Check that out!


Thanks for the great photos, Ellen! Those were awesome.

Hope you all enjoyed this quick peek inside The Amazing Society. From my short time talking with Ellen, I can tell this is a great place to work, and everyone there puts a lot of heart into what they do.

From the Time Hound Times and the readers here, KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!

Happy Dueling!