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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 Preview - 'Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures'

by Reldan on May 23, 2006 @ 12:29 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.

Publisher: Funcom
Developer: Funcom
Release Date: Q4 2006

Conan: Hyborian Adventures is an upcoming MMORPG from Funcom, the makers of Anarchy Online. At E3, I was able to take a look at the latest build of Conan and get a detailed overview of the game's character creation and combat systems.

For those unfamiliar with the title, Conan provides an interesting blend of the genres of action/adventure, strategy and MMORPG. At its heart, it is an action RPG, placing players in the role of a hero among the barbarian tribes in the Conanverse. Combat is very action-oriented and physical. The first 24 levels of character development are played as a single-player game, albeit on the Funcom servers. After that, it's up to the player to decide if he wants to continue the character's adventures by stepping up into the MMORPG world.

At the beginning of Conan, your character is nothing more than an escaped galley slave. In theory, by the end of the game, he can be one of the greatest heroes Hyboria has ever known. Your fate, you see, is somehow linked with the King, Conan. Although you have no memory of your past life, your future is whatever you choose to make of it.

You begin onboard the galley; you must pick one of three races and then use a large set of sliders to completely customize how your character looks. The options here are extensive with what seemed to be around 10-15 different parameters to change for the face alone. During the demo, the character we created was as ugly as sin – intentionally, of course. The character creation system should almost guarantee that the Conan world is going to be filled with a set of diverse-looking characters.

Combat is hack-and-slash, with players swinging their weapons in one of six directions. Different combinations of swings can lead to speed and damage bonuses, making these combo attacks key to doing as much damage as possible. Several weapons are available, from swords and axes to bows and lances. Mounted combat is also supported, and in Conan, your mounted attacks scale in damage, depending on how fast your horse is moving.

The game also features a siege-style combat. Your guild can build huge cities, but enemy cities will also be popping up all throughout the wilderness. If you leave enemy cities unchecked for too long, they will gather up troops to try and raze your cities into the ground. Siege weapons will be offered, and a huge catapult was used during the siege demonstration.

Conan : Hyborian Adventures is offering players the chance to take their place in the Conanverse, a world full of adventure and lush terrain. What more can a budding barbarian ask for?

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