So, after nigh a month of traipsing through Gotham and Metropolis and getting up to level 28 on my main hero, I have realized what DCUO really reminds me of.
There is an elseworlds, Kingdom Come, written by Mark Waid and Alex Ross which details a world full of metahumans. It is violent and horrifying for normal humans who cower on the ground below as the "champions" of humanity do battle in the sky. DCUO is a world filled with thousands of metas of immense power fighting in the streets. People flee in terror. The vast majority of cities or overrun with violence and crime. Superheroes and Villains fight constantly.
In short, it is a brutal world. Gangsters and hostile aliens lay waste to cities. Demons from hell rise with the mass of new evil sorcerers. In short, it is a world in dire need of heroes where there is little to no normalcy to counteract the fact that the cities are essentially war zones. I just feel bad for all of the people who are just trying to go to work when the Sinestro corps decides to level city hall or something.
And other stuff
My personal sleeper hit of 2010-11 is Knight and Squire. The new book comes out on Wednesday and I am pumped.
Also, I keep coming back to Nightrunner, the Batman of Paris. I want more of him. I think the cultural context is amazing and that the character design is absolutely flawless. If I could pick one character at DC to write right now, it would be him.