Age of Conan - hands-on

As we played Age of Conan in a darkened room somewhere in developer Eidos’ HQ, lead designer Jason Allen Stone suggested the magnificently ugly face of our barbarian might be corrected by limiting the range of his facial customization. We do hope not: our frog-faced, beady-eyed, pseudo-Egyptian machete-wielding murderer was a glorious sight to behold.

Few games allow you so much character in a single human face. You might only be able to play humans in Age of Conan’s online fantasy world, but they are humans with genuine, monstrous charisma. They are, after all, escaped slaves turned adventurers - why should they be pretty?

In any case there’s much more to Conan’s Hyborian world than an ugly face - such as the fact that you’ll be able to ride camels and mammoths into battle. You can expect to fight from the backs of these mounts in epic, sweeping conflicts that take you into the realms of bat demons and player-owned fortresses.

This is an MMORPG that is aiming high and low at the same time. It wants to be as approachable as a single-player adventure, such as Oblivion, while having all the developed features of the more sophisticated MMORPGs - features such as territorial conflict, instanced dungeons, trade classes, guild warfare, and multifarious Player vs Player options. Want a drunken brawl? Then go for it. Want to engage in endless hours of mass running battles? That’s available too.


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