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Age of Conan: Press Event Report - Part Three

StraddenStradden Managing EditorHalifax, NSPosts: 6,696Member

Last week, Managing Editor Jon Wood traveled to Norway to visit the studios of Funcom's Age of Conan. Today, he presents part three of his report, looking at raiding, city building and sieging.

Over the last few days, we’ve spent time talking about a lot of different aspects of Age of Conan, but in the end, it’s the high-level stuff that makes or breaks an MMORPG for many players, especially the hardcore folks, that makes all of the difference.

Traditionally, PvP and raids have dominated the endgame of most MMORPGs, and while Age of Conan follows that trend, they have found a new approach that will not only call upon players to fight against each other, but to plan and organize fights over property that actually means something.

Read it all here.

Cheers,
Jon Wood
Managing Editor
MMORPG.com

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Comments

  • RastonRaston Valrico, FLPosts: 438Member

    some good information there, thanks!

  • TerranahTerranah Stockton, CAPosts: 3,605Member

    24 man raids.  That sounds kinda lame.  I was hoping they would come up with something better than that.  My experience with raids is they are very boring, and unless you run them regularly with your guild you don't get much out of it.  But with a 24 main raid, you will have to either be in a big guild or allied with another guild.   So that will mean large chunks of time, running the same dungeons over and over and over.  And if the game is a system hog, then it will be a lagfest too.  Yay for fun. 

     

    Limiting cities I understand.  But if your guild doesn't get a city that would kinda suck.  So can you live in a guild owned city if you are not in that guild?  Once again it forces you to be in a big guild it seems.  If your not in a big guild are you homeless then?

     

    And having to prearrange attacking a city doesn't sound right.  What about the element of surprise?!  You should be able to attack a city whenever you want. I guess I will have to schedule my life around the game unless I want my city and everything we've worked for to go poof. 

     

    I think I am having my first doubts about this game.   It sounds like its trying to be a hardcore game, but the market is leaning heavily toward casual.  Now if you couple hardcore with poor performance, the game's success will be disappointing.

  • miagisanmiagisan NY, NYPosts: 5,156Member

    Alot of it sounds really cool, and while not a raiding fan, i can avoid raid instances, no biggie. But i agree with the above poster, this seems to scream "get in an uber guild or get out".

    image

  • RastonRaston Valrico, FLPosts: 438Member

    I actually like the this system.  Something that sounds very similiar was used in shadowbane for player cities.  This actually does the exact opposite of what you are saying, it allows you to schedule your gaming around your life, rather than your life around the game.  People know ahead of time that it is coming, the whole suprise attack concept means I have to be on alot more to protect the city and having to push other things in life to the background on a regular basis.

    Shadowbane originally had the 'suprise attack' concept where people could attack city structures (but not the tree of life) at any time, but it was heavily abused to the point where they moved to the only during the bane concept.

    On paper, it is probably one of the only ways to make something like this work, in practice we'll just have to wait to see how it works out.

    As for the raid thing, just get together with alliances if you don't want to do the big guild thing.  I was part of a successful raiding alliance in EQ2 before I moved onto a casual raid guild from a small family guild.  And trust me, 24 people isn't all that much really, I run 24 person raids in EQ2 and there are times I wish I could take 30 :)  The key to raiding (like other aspects of the game) is to not let it stress you out and just have fun with the people.  Plus, I have a feeling that raiding in AoC is going to be a good bit different that other games.  Nothing concrete, just a feeling.  You only have 10 classes and 24 slots, that means it should be easier to find roles for anyone in a raid, regardless of the class.

  • StrontyDogStrontyDog LimerickPosts: 83Member

    I havent heard the information on the raid dungeon tier system before but there doesn't seem to be anything in the pvp siege information that hasn't been released previously.

    Did you get the opportunity to witness and siege combat while you were there?

    Also would be nice to get some more information on the computer built cities that are built next to guild pve villages. It's a really nice idea that you can defend your guild city from besieging npcs or you can go wage war on their village if you want.

  • eburneburn Winchester, VAPosts: 740Member

    Oi, raid encounters suck. Ya know in EQ 1 running up to some plane with 100 other people was kind of interesting. Then it's progressed to pure crap since then. You chip away at some mob's crazy amount of hp for 3 hours dealing with elements that don't make you think, but test your patience. There's no puzzle, just if you go over here you aggro 37 baby dragons and wipe the whole team. Ohh you noob..

    Yeah, I'm hoping they don't just keep their top equipment at the bottom of these been there done that raid encounters. I'm not gearing like that ever again in a MMO.

    I kill other players because they're smarter than AI, sometimes.

  • TrollstarTrollstar Erie, PAPosts: 332Member

    News about raid encounters makes me sad. I'm hoping I can avoid them w/o feeling like a second class citizen.  I did enough raiding in WOW, I'm never going back to that again.

     

    Who the hell are you, and why should I care?
    Congrats! You are a victim of Trollstar!

  • VrazuleVrazule Laguna Vista, TXPosts: 1,095Member

    Yet another game falls to the elitist raiders, the niche of the niche while making all the other play styles feel like second class citizens.  I suppose this outdated thinking won't go away till they fire all of the hardcore nerds that are currently developing this crap.

    With PvE raiding, it has never been a question of being "good enough". I play games to have fun, not to be a simpering toady sitting through hour after hour of mind numbing boredom and fawning over a guild master in the hopes that he will condescend to reward me with shiny bits of loot. But in games where those people get the highest progression, anyone who doesn't do that will just be a moving target for them and I'll be damned if I'm going to pay money for the privilege. - Neanderthal

  • JupstoJupsto englandPosts: 2,087Member

    Originally posted by Vrazule


    Yet another game falls to the elitist raiders, the niche of the niche while making all the other play styles feel like second class citizens.  I suppose this outdated thinking won't go away till they fire all of the hardcore nerds that are currently developing this crap.
    I duno why I am defending FC these days. but your wrong tbh. because crafted items are virtually as good, and customisable so better at certain situations. it wont be like wow where winning is gear based. this game is more skill based.

    and I can;t say for certain but FC have previously said they wanted to make crafted items have better bonuses in pvp, which means raid gear would only be used in pve - especially if they make a loot server. I dont think raid gear would be used in raids tho because if your going against a certain boss you'll want crafted armour you can customise to get the best advantage over him.

     

    My blog: image

  • HexxeityHexxeity Kansas City, MOPosts: 848Member

    FunCom has never been a great development company, regardless of what the AO fanbois say.  There is a reason AO is free to play, you guys!

    And now they hope to entice players away from other MMOGs by emphasizing raid content?

    L M F A O

    Utterly moronic.

  • AlienovrlordAlienovrlord San Antonio, TXPosts: 1,525Member

    It is heartening to see the negative reactions raiding now produces from more and more MMORPG players.

    Developers now need to learn that. 

    The PvP will be what people will want in AoC, I think, not tedious, time-sink raids.    They can get those in WoW. 

  • KhalathwyrKhalathwyr Denton, TXPosts: 3,138Member

    Regarding Battle Keep PvP sieges (the sometimes called PvP cities), it has been explained by Gaute Godagger that guild will have to set 2 different times per week as raid windows. In those times, other guilds can come and attack the keep to try and take it. Once the battle begins the attacking guild will have 90 minutes to take the keep. If noone attacks the keep in the two slotted times set up by the defending guild, then they get to enjoy the benefits for without harrassment.

    So, there won't be any having to wake up at 2:00 in the morning to repel a raid unless you guild leader sets that as the raid window your Keep is vulnerable. Gaute also mentions there are 9 Keeps in the Border Kingdoms per server to fight over in this manner, and that there will be a list in game which lists the times guild defenders set as their vulnerable time.

    http://www.stage6.com/user/AcolyteAvery/video/2118412/Age-of-Conan-New-'Keep'-Info

    "Many nights, my friend... Many nights I've put a blade to your throat while you were sleeping. Glad I never killed you, Steve. You're alright..."

    Kickstarter 2 / Naysayers 0

  • KyleranKyleran Tampa, FLPosts: 20,000Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Alienovrlord


    It is heartening to see the negative reactions raiding now produces from more and more MMORPG players.
    Developers now need to learn that. 
    The PvP will be what people will want in AoC, I think, not tedious, time-sink raids.    They can get those in WoW. 

    So true, trying to beat WOW in the raiding game is pointless, better to focus on an endgame that is different to try and draw people away from it.

     

    In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
    "I don't have one life, I have many lives" - Grunty
    Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
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  • KhalathwyrKhalathwyr Denton, TXPosts: 3,138Member

     

    Originally posted by Alienovrlord


    It is heartening to see the negative reactions raiding now produces from more and more MMORPG players.
    Developers now need to learn that. 
    The PvP will be what people will want in AoC, I think, not tedious, time-sink raids.    They can get those in WoW. 



    Not quite sure why it is heartening. I mean, anyone who has taken the time to look at the many interviews out there and use objective, not emotional, thought can see a few things:

     

    1) Raids are being put in for those who want to raid. Those that don't want to don't have to.

    2) Crafted items that have the gem slots can be equal too and sometimes better than raid drop items. An example given straight from a dev's mouth was that a raid drop sword may be a little better and getting through a raid's mobs, but a gem slotted crafted sword could be fitted with appropriate gems that do more damage/have better effects against the boss of the raid.

    I mean, if they stated that you have to raid, then I'd be right there carrying a burning torch along with you. But if you review all the information out there, it is very clear there intent is not to pidgeon-hole anyone into Raids, PvP, PvE or crafting. They are just offering all styles b/c there is a demand for all styles.

    And before anyone asks for a link to anything I've said, the answer is no. I've gotten all my information between this site, TTH, the official site and Stage 6. The information isn't that hard to find if you have a little patience and watch, read, listen carefully. :P -cheers!

    Edit: Caveat, FC could totally 180 on what they have said and make AoC a total raid-fest. At this time, all I/we have to go on is their stated intentions.

    "Many nights, my friend... Many nights I've put a blade to your throat while you were sleeping. Glad I never killed you, Steve. You're alright..."

    Kickstarter 2 / Naysayers 0

  • noodlesannoodlesan Austin, TXPosts: 46Member

    They pushed the game back another two months to 5/20/08 to do this?

     

    I'm going to be too old to play the game, again.

     

  • VrazuleVrazule Laguna Vista, TXPosts: 1,095Member

    In my book, crafting is just as elitist as raiding.  It's niche of the niche as well and forcing the majority of plain adventurers to be dependent on crafting is just as bad as making all the best gear raid only.

    There are a lot of adventurers, such as myself who want to get rewarded for adventuring.  That means getting gear that's just as good as crafted and just as good as raiding gear.  No single play style should get the best of the best, it's so completely unfair to the game's other demographics, who usually are significant in number.

    To be honest, I'm not at all interested in crafting having a meaning within the context of the game, because in the end, it's always at the expense of the plain ole adventurers.  Allow crafting to slighty improve items drops is one thing, allowing it to be the primary venue for loot is altogether another sad story.

    Oh, and another thing, if they're so damn insistent on letting raiders have the best of the best, then they should have the cojones to only allow raid gear to be used in raid instances.  No more of this trivializing solo, group and PvP content with fucking raid gear.

    With PvE raiding, it has never been a question of being "good enough". I play games to have fun, not to be a simpering toady sitting through hour after hour of mind numbing boredom and fawning over a guild master in the hopes that he will condescend to reward me with shiny bits of loot. But in games where those people get the highest progression, anyone who doesn't do that will just be a moving target for them and I'll be damned if I'm going to pay money for the privilege. - Neanderthal

  • SonofSethSonofSeth ZagrebPosts: 1,884Member



    Originally posted by Vrazule


    Oh, and another thing, if they're so damn insistent on letting raiders have the best of the best, then they should have the cojones to only allow raid gear to be used in raid instances.  No more of this trivializing solo, group and PvP content with fucking raid gear.

    NO.

    image

  • eburneburn Winchester, VAPosts: 740Member

    Originally posted by Vrazule


    Oh, and another thing, if they're so damn insistent on letting raiders have the best of the best, then they should have the cojones to only allow raid gear to be used in raid instances.  No more of this trivializing solo, group and PvP content with fucking raid gear.

    Good point over all man. The other poster says no, but I say. Yes. Let the niche's niche.

    I kill other players because they're smarter than AI, sometimes.

  • GondisGondis Cowansville, PAPosts: 30Member

    You need to see this in the eyes of Funcom. Most people playing this game won't be able to be on 24/7. Making everything in a time frame is needed...And you got to admit...every time your guild has something going on....no one shows up at the start so most likely someone is gonna lose badly in those sieges.

    Me personally...ill probably be on 24 / 7 just because i play games usually during my classes in college....i have the attention span of a common rodent.

  • LobenLoben Nowhere, TXPosts: 206Member

    50 dkp minus!

  • urbanmonkeyurbanmonkey Tel AvivPosts: 134Member

     

    Originally posted by Terranah


    And having to prearrange attacking a city doesn't sound right.  What about the element of surprise?!  You should be able to attack a city whenever you want. I guess I will have to schedule my life around the game unless I want my city and everything we've worked for to go poof.



    Eh, let me get this straight. Attacking a city only during specific hours limited to 90 minutes leads to you having to schudule your life around the game?

     

    I would think that scheduling attacks to specific timeframes that YOU can set allows you to do whatever you do in real life not having to worry that every minute someone could be attacking your city while you are at the beach.

    ---------------------------------------------------------
    Never argue with idiots. They are immune to logic.

  • theniffrigtheniffrig DublinPosts: 351Member

    Only thing i didn't like about that information was the limit on the number of player cities per server. How the hell is that going to work? Can a single player who makes a tiny guild 1st with about 10 people 'claim' a player city spot because he was first to get to it, then decide 'i'll keep this whole city to myself and my 9 friends'?! Or what happens if these guilds decide to take a few months off from the game, will they 'loose' the city place for good when they don't pay a monthly sub? Will the 'uber l337' guilds race to claim the city places on the servers in the first few minutes of the game being launched, thus leaving the casual gamer who might want to form a guild without ever being able to get a guild city? What if all the guilds who happen to claim these places have rediculous names or immature people in them or eventually become 'full' and decide not to recruit players who don't meet their criteria? Do the guilds loose their city place once its destroyed by an invading guild so the guilds waiting on the side lines who dont have a player city get a chance to make one?

    That idea is seriously forcing players into either joining a guild they dont want to or not allowing them to get to do the full content of the game just because they 'didn't get there first'. Its almost as bad an idea as micro payments for MMO's!

  • JuppJupp LiestalPosts: 65Member
    Originally posted by theniffrig


    ---*snipped*---


    That idea is seriously forcing players into either joining a guild they dont want to or not allowing them to get to do the full content of the game just because they 'didn't get there first'. Its almost as bad an idea as micro payments for MMO's!

     

    *wild speculations and wrong-headed musings ahead*

    With this system you do not just joining a guild anymore. You more or less pledge allegiance to a city-state, or country so you are able to build your home within the "secure" walled borders of the city. This is above the term of a normal guild as we know it from most other MMOs. It changes how you should look at guilds in AoC, at least as long as you allow yourself to be dragged into this kind of guild/gameplay. Personally I find this concept rather intriguing.

    But it would also mean that the leading members of the guilds would have to rethink the concept on how their guild actually works. Perhaps it could work like the bourgeoisie worked in the middle ages rather than the close-knit brotherhood and clans we know from current MMO's.  Players that join the guild will be more burgers than guild members in a traditional sense. Whether they pay "taxes" or earn their citizenship is up to everyones creativity. The player would also guarantee that in times of trouble he would fight alongside the other citizens to defend his home and "country". In return the city will guarantee  to the citizen the safety and the right to live within the city borders. In times of trouble the ones that join the army would then be able to rise in rank and would be guaranteed a share of the loot that would come with the sacking of an enemy city/country.

    One can now muse how this all should look like and it sounds like this form of a guild is more complicated to build, lead and maintain. But in my opinion those guilds that will break with the old concept of MMO guilds will be more successful in AoC's guild-organised cities. Sounds all too complicated? Just think about it again. The simple concept of citizenship in the middle ages was understood even by the simplest serf and it did prove to be a successfull concept up until today. And if you think about it all, it begs the question if this concept of a guild, like i described it above, is really that restricting and confining as you can have it in your average MMO Raid-and-PvP guild....I think it would be the contrary.

     

    *end of insane thinking*

    ***************************
    Remember, remember the 5th of November
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  • theniffrigtheniffrig DublinPosts: 351Member

    Ok, taking what you said about it being more open than your usual guild in other MMO's, that still does not remove the problem that i have with it, as i stated, limited player cities per server.

    This still means that certain players will have 'founded' these player cities and since they are limited means that the casual player may never get to be a 'founder' of a city since the city places are limited to begin with.

    You've gone into the details of how these cities will work, and i don't care if the city was made out of gold, had pink elephants and rainbows all over it, what i care about is what i've drawn from reading that article, and that is:

    Since the pvp city places are limited on each server to begin with, only the 'guilds' who get to these places first and establish a city, first, will have had access to the content of making your own player city while other 'late' players will simply be forced to join these 'guilds' ideas of a player city blisstopia or simply not join a player city at all. The option for every guild to make its own city is removed in favour of a 1st come 1st served system.

    So as you can see, my problem isn't about how these cities are run, but rather the way it is limited to who gets to make them. Only the 1st guilds to make them will have 'their' own cities once all the city 'places' have been filled on the server.

  • JuppJupp LiestalPosts: 65Member

    You are right, we are not going to see that every player is going to be able to found a city. And not every player will have the chance to build his own home within the realms of AoC. But I've been part in enough MMO's that feature guild housing and so far none of them gave everybody the chance to build his house, let alone a whole town, wherever he wanted to. Either you had realms, like in AoC, or you just did not have enough space like in Ultima Online. 

    Not everyone is going to be Peter Minuit and found New York in AoC. But then, doesn't it sound natural that only those with great power and wealth can ultimately found something as complex and challenging as a city? How long do you think a city that was founded by a guild of 10 would last if the first sieges start to take place. And what happens if the guild looses 2-5 members? Then you have a city that is not a city but a hommlet. And soon it will be a ghost town (UO had some good examples).

    While it might suck that not eveyone is going to be able to be a founder in the long run, and this is my personal opinion, it will turn out to the better when a strong guild with alot of members will stand behind a city. Because then there will be a certain guarantee that a city will live on for a long time.

    I am not sure if maintaining a city will cost you gold or not, perhaps someone in the know will be able to tell this. But if that is the case then my argument is even stronger than before.

    As a side note: Havn't there been talks about "towers" that you could inhabit in case your guild would not be  fast or strong enough to maintain a city. I think I remember reading or seeing something from that developer weekend not long ago.

     

     

    ***************************
    Remember, remember the 5th of November
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