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Video game reviews

Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures
As a galley slave you land on the burning beaches of Tortage. With no memory of your past, a broken oar and tattered clothes you enter a fantastic journey where you will define your destiny. In a world filled with cruel gods, mythical creatures and a struggling human race, Conan the mighty barbarian has finally seized the throne. As king of Aquilonia, his rule begins to spiral toward the doom of ancient evils as his enemies resurrect from the darkest corners of Hyboria.

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.


FAQ

What is Age of Conan - Hyborian Adventures?
Age of Conan is an online action RPG set in the Conan universe as created by Robert E Howard.

What exactly is an online action RPG?
Age of Conan takes all the best aspects from the various genres and melds them into an enjoyable whole. The frantic combat action of the best action titles, a deep and involving story crafted by our experiencedand award winning storytellers all set within an online world full of other players to enjoy the action, trade and share experiences with!

Does the game have single player elements?
The first sections of the game will be played just like a single player title as you develop your character through an involving storyline, as you prepare for even greater adventures beyond. The whole game will always be played on online game servers.

Is the game turn based or real-time?
The gameplay will be very action orientated, and while you will find the standard RPG skill sets in there, from thieves with nimble fingers to pick the stoutest locks to Demonologists torturing the souls of their enemies, the system itself will be very much based around fast reaction gaming.

With our unique control systems though we hope that players of all skill levels will be able to dive right into the meat of the combat and allow them to wade into the field of battle, alongside the gaming veterans who will be able to take our combat system and make it their own!

What type of gameplay features can we expect to see?
Everything from enthralling quests (you won’t be sent to kill the local rat population in Age of Conan, we promise!) through exploring dungeons all the way up to large-scale multiplayer battles and siege situations!

The beginning of the game will be played alone as you begin your journey through the world of King Conan, then once you have earned your power and ability to survive, the world opens up again to a whole new range of exciting adventures that can be experienced alone or as part of a huge online community!

So you will need an Internet connection to play the game?
Yes, you will require an internet connection to play Age of Conan.

Is the game level based or skill based?
The game is based around a level progression, as you grow stronger more adventures will open up to you, and you will be able to take part in epic battles with other players in many diverse regions of Hyboria.

How many playable classes will there be?
For the first five levels you are a “commoner”, without class, but of Cimmerian, Aquilonian or Stygian origin. Then at level five you choose your base class from four archetypes: Mage, Priest, Thief or Warrior.

At level twenty you get further three to four class selections for each archetype (14 in total), which branches again into two specialized classes for each selection at level sixty.

Additionally you can pick one of four distinct professions at level 40, which gives an additional, parallel, path of development. You can be a Craftsman (making things), a Master (earning you a full time squire), a Commander (adept at multiplayer gameplay) or a General - an expert on siege gameplay.

Will there be PvP options?
Yes there will be PvP gameplay in Age of Conan, we will be announcing more details on the PvP systems closer to release.

How does the action combat system work?
There are actually three main aspects to the action sections of the game; each will provide a very different and dynamic gameplay situation for the player.

Sowhat is "Real Combat"?
This is our revolutionary multi point melee system. This unique aspect of this system is that you swing your weapon where you direct it. This system will let the players direct, and combine, the swings of their weapon to create fancy, brutal and effective slashes and thrusts, or combine them in combos or special attacks that do additional damage. You should really “feel” the power of your character when you fight, feel the power of each and every blow.

"Real Combat" is easy to learn, and allows for a very different experience to both the slow studious nature of RPG combat and the ‘twitch’ nature of a first person shooter. When you pick it up the first time you might not even notice it as you happily slash and thrust away. With experienceyou might see certain attacks swinging better together. As you learn to string it into combos you become a dancing machine of brutal death. The same multipoint system is true for ranged combat and spell casting. In both cases the Real Combat engine allows you to string hits or spells together to form new fantastic effects.

The Real Combat will also work with mounted combat.

What do you mean by Formation Combat?
This is a completely new, aspect of multiplayer gameplay. In previous RPGs with indirect point-and-click movement you have seen party based formations, as in the “Baldurs Gate” series for instance. In Conan you can for the first time not only have a formation, but be in direct control of both your character, NPC’s and other players..

The leader of the formation can decide ondifferent formations and the degree of freedom the various players and NPC’s can have within the formation. The formation also serves as a cooperative travel system, yielding beneficial effectsto the team as the collision of the formation itself protect the members at the rear. Formations yield beneficial bonuses to members, and offer a new type of depth to a RPG. In some cases it will be essential to pick the right formation to survive.

What about Siege Combat?
As a player you can cooperate with other players in building cities, with walls, towers and keeps, protecting softer targets like houses, inns and merchants. In the same regions you will have the forces of evil like the Picts not only building their own city, like a real-life Real Time Strategy AI, but with the ability to mount sieges against your city. With ample warning you must return home to protect the walls of your city against enemy catapults and hordes of monsters swarming through the breaches.

Yes, the only true way to combat this oncoming evil is to gang up with your friends and take the battle to their walls. Lay siege to their towers, blow them up and see the vermin scream for mercy when your catapults sing their merry song of death and destruction. Naturally, mercy is unheard of in the Hyborian time. A swift death would be the extent of friendliness offered by (or to) your foes. Massive battles hide almost any form of cruelty or chivalry.

The World of Conan
When in the timeline of the Conan Universe is the game set?
The setting is chronologically directly after the Robert E. Howard book “The Hour of the Dragon”, in the era when Conan was king of Aquilonia. This novel is heralded by many as one of Howard’s strongest, and gives us a great entry point into Howard’s world.

Will I be able to ‘be’ Conan?
No, Conan will not be a playable character, rather you will be playing in King Conan’s world. You can in some way see the journey through the game as many alternate ways of sampling Conan’s history, and getting to know him. This will gradually bring you closer and closer to the grand King of Aquilonia, to his royal court and who knows, maybe even joining him at this toptable!

How true to the original writings of Howard are you intending to be?
The world that Howard created was a dark and gritty place and we certainly aim to very true to that feeling and atmosphere. Obviously Howard wrote the original works in the 1930’s, a long time before world war two, Martin Luther King or the 60’s sexual revolution, and some of his themes and characters are very much creations of their time that do occasionally jar our modern sensibilities, so Age of Conan will not be done in a tasteless, exploitative manner. Rest assured however that the world of Conan will never, ever, be politically correct and we hope that the game will capture all the elements of Howard’s creation that make it what it is!

What rating do you expect the game to have?
Although the game is not yet rated we are certainly expecting for the game to be rated as ‘Mature’

General
When is the game due for release?
We do not have a set release date yetbut we are currently planning for release in the first half of 2006

What platforms is the game being released on?
The game is currently being developed for Windows.

Will the game be subscription based like MMOs or free like online FPS or RTS games?
The pricing structure for the game hasn’t been decided yet, check back nearer release for more details


  • First Mature rated MMORPG - Savage, bloody, violent and sexy; delivering the true essence of Robert E. Howard’s original vision.
  • Real Combat System - Fight mounted or on the ground. Team up in battle formations and command others in epic multiplayer battles and massive sieges in real time.
  • Player vs. Player and Player vs. Environment - Meet the ultimate resistance in human opponents, and crush the skulls of other players in arena fights, drunken brawls and sieges.
  • Diverse Gameplay – Build cities, craft unique artifacts, explore a fantastic world, befriend others and master the use of magic, steel or bows.
  • True Conan Experience - Explore King Conan's amazing universe and roam in the brutal footsteps of the world’s greatest fantasy hero. Battle terrifying demons and defeat devastating monsters known from 70 years of Conan lore.
  • Conan’s World - Enter a gigantic and savage world spread across the three nations of Aquilonia, Cimmeria and Stygia. Explore jungles, deserts, mountains, valleys, dungeons and cities.
  • Player vs. Player and Player vs. Environment - Meet the ultimate resistance in human opponents, and crush the skulls of other players in arena fights, drunken brawls and sieges. Charge into the world of Conan, and fight monsters and demons alone or in groups.
  • Guild and Solo Gameplay - Form guilds and lay siege to hostile castles in massive PvP battles. Team up with other players in clans or face the Hyborian dangers all by yourself.
  • Character Customization – Let yourimagination run wild with thousands of options. Create your character and shape it up to fit the role and style you want to play.
  • Amazing graphics - A next generation game in every sense of the word, 'Age of Conan' is a key title in Microsoft's Games for Windows line-up, as well as a showcase DX10 title for nVidia. Expect an unprecedented visual feast.
  • 7.1 Surround Sound – Feel the powerful sound effects and epic soundtrack in 7.1 surround sound. Listen to gripping voices and dynamic sounds pulling you into savage world of Conan

 

 

 

 

 

 


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