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Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures

Platform(s): PC
Genre: Online Multiplayer
Publisher: Eidos
Developer: Funcom
Release Date: May 20, 2008 (US), May 23, 2008 (EU)

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PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!

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'Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures' - Future Updates Revealed

by Rainier on June 13, 2008 @ 6:09 a.m. PDT

Age of Conan is an online action RPG featuring amix of a deep, story-driven single-player experience and a massive and brutal multiplayer end-game bringing forth the ultimate representation of the Age of Conan. Now you can enter the brutal domain of the world's greatest fantasy hero.

“While we have enjoyed the initial success for Age of Conan, we know that a solid launch is but the start when it comes to the MMO genre,” said Gaute Godager, Game Director on Age of Conan. ”As we look ahead we are preparing a huge amount of new content, and what we are presenting today will evolve Age of Conan even further. It’s naturally an incredibly ambitious update plan for a live MMO game, but we are certain our players would want nothing less.”

Without further ado, here are some of the cool things to expect in the months to come:

PvP evolved – To the Death

The great combat system in Age of Conan has taken MMO fighting to a new level of fun, and Player versus Player combat plays a major part in this. As a result, a massive new PvP update is planned for late June. Aptly called To the death, this update brings more consequence and rewards to PvP, and an important part of it is the Fugitive system. The more lower level players you kill, the easier it is for others to hunt you down. In addition, ten PvP levels with additional ranks will be introduced, as well as specific gear and weapons for PvP.

Guild Alliance Warfare

Preproduction has started on a MASSIVE free update which will come later this year. Currently titled “Kingship!”, large clusters of guilds will be able to form alliances, and rule and conquer on a massive scale. Everyone in a guild alliance will play a part in this system, and together they can even erect unique looking alliance Battlekeeps. The alliances can also fight over, and build, culture-specific “wonders of the world”, with a direct link to higher powers! As part of the system Funcom will also facilitate larger amounts of players in massive battles.

Powerpoints

This fall, a unique reward and character evolution system called Powerpoints will be introduced. This rewards active in-game behavior, and allows for gathering points through numerous methods, including owning a Battlekeep, playing the end-game at level 80, winning PvP matches, or simply being an active guild member or subscribing to the game. There will be many ways to obtain Powerpoints, and numerous rewards, ranging from exclusive Powerfeats to weapons, armor and potions. Powerpoints may even allow you to level faster!

New areas and dungeons

You won’t need to wait for an expansion pack to explore exciting new areas. In the next period, Funcom will include several new areas, as well as evolving already existing areas. This includes a brand new dungeon in Aquilonia, reshaping three dungeons in Stygia, and an entire mountain range in Cimmeria!

Improved player-made villages and Battlekeep systems

While the guild alliance system brings a whole new level to the game, Funcom will continue to expand the existing player-made areas and the systems running them. A focus on evolving the massive elements of the game even further continues, ranging from placing NPC’s in the cities to more choices and benefits.

Social updates

An MMO is nothing without a good social scene. While Conan is all about crushing your enemies, social enhancements are also getting some love. A fun example is the combo-based dancing system which is now coming to the game, and it’s entirely motion captured by professional dance artists.

More adventures

Age of Conan has received tremendous praise for immersion and the great voice-over quests. This is but the start of the adventure, and numerous new quests are coming into the game, spread across the entire world and across the level ranges. Soon 60 additional quests will also get full voice acting, further improving immersion.

Embracing community feedback

Since launch several enhancements and fixes have been implemented to Age of Conan, and Funcom has continuously staffed up the service departments to improve customer satisfaction. This has already resulted in a better game experience, but the work will continue. At the heart of all of this stands the Age of Conan community. A lot of the upcoming improvements to the game will be based directly on community feedback, and the wishes and concerns players have when it comes to the future of the game will always be taken into account.

As Microsoft’s DirectX 10 is undoubtedly the future of PC gaming, Funcom has decided to ship only the DirectX 9 version at launch, giving the team more time to focus on building a DirectX 10 version worthy of Microsoft’s great vision for the future of PC gaming. This postponement will let Funcom include even more features in the DirectX 10 version of Age of Conan than originally planned.

The DirectX 10 version will be premiered at the German Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany, August 20 – 24, 2008. A special preview showing off the advanced graphics made possible by DirectX 10 technology will be unveiled this summer at nVidia’s NVISION event in San Jose, California, August 25 – 27, 2008.

In 'Conan' the players will encounter a dark, lush, violent and sinful universe, presented in fantastic graphics and stunning 7.1 surround audio. In a world filled with cruel gods, mythical creatures, lost civilizations and a struggling human race, the mighty barbarian has finally seized the throne as king of Aquilonia. But Conan's rule is on the brink of chaos, spiraling towards the doom of ancient evils. In this twisted fantasy world, dark magic and brutal combat lurks around every corner, and each man and woman must carve their own unique destiny under Conan's reign. In the true vision of Robert E. Howard's dark universe it's now time for you to become a messenger of death.

In addition to incredible graphics and sound, the game will be filled with unique features like the "Real Combat" engine; a revolutionary new multi-point melee system which allows the players to swing their weapons where they direct it, in real-time! This easy to learn and fun melee system lets the players truly feel they are on the battlefield, and goes head-on against the formulaic nature of online RPG combat. In 'Conan' you can also, for the first time in an online RPG, create player-made battle formations where you can command NPC's and other players in combat, making for epic multiplayer battles. The multiplayer game also allow the players to form guilds and lay siege to enemy castles, letting their catapults sing their merry song of death as the enemy is crushed to a pulp.

Key pricing parameters for the game will be: The Standard game SKU will have a Suggested Retail Price (SRP) of 59,99 USD in North America and at 49.99 Euro in the European markets. Funcom will receive a share of the wholesale price of the product which is the price selling into the retail-chains, which naturally is lower than the SRP.

Without further ado, the monthly subscription prices for Age of Conan are as follows:

North America & Oceania

Monthly Per Month Total
1 Month 14.99 USD 14.99 USD
3 months 13.99 USD 41,97 USD
6 months 12.99 USD 77.94 USD

Europe

Monthly Per Month Total Total Incl. VAT
1 Month 12.99 EUR 12.99 EUR 14.94 EUR
3 months 11.99 EUR 35.97 EUR 41.37 EUR
6 months 10.99 EUR 65.94 EUR 75.83 EUR

VAT only applicable in EU member states

United Kingdom

Monthly Per Month Total Total Incl. VAT
1 Month 8.99 GBP 8.99 GBP 10.34 GBP
3 months 8.39 GBP 25.17 GBP 28.95 GBP
6 months 7.69 GBP 46.14 GBP 53.06 GBP

In addition to the online subscriptions, players can also purchase 60-day timecards in retail stores around Europe, North America and Oceania. The recommended retail price for 60-day timecards is 29.99 USD / 29.99 EUR (including VAT where applicable). Markets outside Europe, Oceania and North America will follow European pricing.

Minimum configuration (1024x768, detail reduced)

  • OS: Windows XP Service Pack 2 or Windows Vista
  • Processor: Intel Pentium 4 3Ghz or equivalent
  • RAM: 1GB Video card: NVIDIA GeForce 6600 or better
  • Video memory: 128MB
  • DVD-ROM: Quad-speed (4x) DVD-ROM drive
  • HARD DRIVE SPACE: 30GB

Recommended configuration (Up to 1280X960, most features on)

  • OS: Windows XP SP 2 or Windows Vista
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz or equivalent
  • RAM: 2048MB Dual Channel DDR2
  • Video card: NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GTX or equivalent
  • Video memory: 512MB
  • DVD-ROM: Quad-speed (4x) DVD-ROM drive
  • HARD DRIVE SPACE: 30GB

Online Gaming: Broadband connection required.

Enhanced for: DirectX 10, 64-bit processors, multi-core, supports parental controls on Vista

Key Features:

  • The first official Conan online RPG sends you on a brutal journey in the footsteps of the worlds’ greatest fantasy hero. Meet Conan’s friend and foes, battle demons and monsters known from 70 year of Conan history, and step up to the ultimate challenge and befriend the mighty king Conan himself.
  • Enter a gigantic and unique gameworld containing more than 30 distinct regions spread across the three mighty nations of Aquilonia, Cimmeria and Stygia. Explore deep jungles, burning deserts, inhospitable mountains, vast valleys, dark dungeons or gleaming cities, and take part in an incredible journey of exploration and adventure.
  • Experience Funcom’s revolutionary Real Combat engine, and fight mounted or on the ground. A new multi-point melee system allows the players to swing their weapons where they direct it, in real-time, going head-on against the formulaic nature of online RPG combat. The Real Combat engine also allow players to team up in battle formations and command both NPC’s and other players in epic multiplayer battles, as well as giving you the chance to participate in massive sieges.
  • Emerge as a hero from the story-driven single-player experience and embark into even greater adventures in the massively multiplayer part of the game. The branching single-player story is created by the award-winning writers behind The Longest Journey, Dreamfall and Anarchy Online so expect something extraordinary.
  • Meet the ultimate resistance in human opponents, and enjoy crushing the skulls of fellow players in mini-games, sieges, arena fights and drunken brawls. Charge into the world of Conan, and fight monsters and demons alone or in groups.
  • Form guilds in the multiplayer game and lay siege to hostile castles. Let the catapults sing their merry song of death as the enemy is brutally crushed to a pulp. Team up with other players in large guilds, and explore a large range of social gameplay opportunities. ‘Conan’ also offers extensive solo gaming opportunities, taking you through an amazing single-player journey and deep into the lands of Hyboria.
  • Besides bringing the most brutal experience ever seen in a MMO, Conan also promises to deliver what all fans of MMOs love and enjoy. Vast character customization opportunities, a deep character creation, lots of social opportunities, crafting, a deep and fun RPG system, exciting classes and player-made cities are but a few ingredients in this powerful RPG.
  • ‘Conan’ takes graphics in MMOs to a new level! With the latest and greatest in technology and an amazing art direction the graphics in ‘Conan’ immerses you into a world as never before seen in any online fantasy universe.
  • Listen to a powerful and epic soundtrack in 7.1 surround. Hear gripping voices recorded by professional actors, and enjoy a dynamic soundscape bringing players to the edge of their seats.
  • ‘Age of Conan’ delivers a brutal, mature and compelling storyline that will send you headlong on a journey of brutality, intrigue and depth. Mixing the finest of storytelling found in classic RPG’s with the open-ended approach found in MMOs, ‘Conan’ delivers a rare and special story experience.
  • In the true and barbaric vision of Robert E. Howard, ‘Age of Conan’ promises to bring mature online players something dark, new and refreshing. This is no cartoony fairytale, ‘Conan’ is made by grown-ups, for grown-ups, giving online gamers the chance to unleash the ultimate havoc and fury.

Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures launches on May 20 in North America and May 23, 2008 in Europe

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