So why are you doing it? Be blunt and be clear about this please, because *ALOT* of people are wondering why you are reverse engineering the game servers and only assuming the worst. If you don't want this to happen, please tell people as to why you are doing it.
To be honest, I don't know what our long-term intention is yet. Keep in mind that I *personally* am not working on this project. Ultimately, I'm leaving what happens with it up to the people who are personally working on it. Options range from as simple as providing a server that will allow you to run the costume creator to realizing a full-fledged private server with packages of unique content that players can play the game with. Or somewhere on the spectrum in between. Once we have something significant, we'll make a decision about what to do with it, consulting legal counsel if necessary to make sure we have our i's dotted and our t's crossed. (Screw the j's and the people who put lines through their z's!)
So sentinal+ was purely for the archiving and then reintegration of CoX characters for the "CoX server project" (not project Z) correct?
Either/or. Keep in mind that when Sentinel+ was released, we didn't know what the ultimate fate of City of Heroes would be. I honestly thought that the game would be sold to another company (optimistically, to a re-formed Paragon Studios), but I didn't know if the user database--including the existing characters--would be transferred as part of the deal. My thought was if everyone had to start from scratch, we could share the algorithm we used to generate the checksum with the new developers and give them the option of letting us re-import our existing characters.
But that didn't come to pass, so that option seems pretty much out the window for now. So with Plan Z in the works, it has been mentioned the possibility of allowing people to import characters into the new game. It won't be an exact one-to-one correspondence, but there might be some way to map various features over.
Other things the exports can be used for are letting people view the nitty-gritty back-end data that their character uses. Even if we don't allow imports into Plan Z, or if someone wants to play another game entirely, they can look at it (it's just XML text) and use it as some sort of guide, maybe. Or a year from now, if they get to wondering, "How many badges did Mr. Foomonkey have? I can't remember..." they can actually go and look it up. Or maybe we'll put out a simple little mobile game to tide people over until Plan Z is released and let people import the character names and really general characteristics ("It's a female dressed in yellow wearing a cape") to generate a little sprite icon or something. Or I dunno... People can use it for whatever they want. I have plans to basically build the City Vault site that we never got from NCsoft (as I understand it, NCsoft failed us on that, not Paragon Studios--NCsoft handled all web sites and development that interacted with the user database), maybe I'll allow people to import their City of Heroes characters just as a historical shrine to them or something. A lot of possibilities, but if Sentinel+ hadn't have been released, we would have had none of those options open to us.