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Message From the King

Glen "Famine" Swan from Funcom's Age of Conan answers questions, and discusses the game, life, and the industry. Let us know what you would like to hear about.

Author: FC-Famine

The Resurrection

Posted by FC-Famine Monday March 9 2009 at 1:28PM
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Long time no see!

I think it’s time we resurrect this blog as it seemed to have died around the launch of the game. Sadly, I wanted to keep the blog going but the launch sucked a lot out of our time in keeping it updated. Now that it’s over, I think this would be the best time to bring it back to life and really hurl some good information out to the MMORPG community!

As you might have seen, I’ve changed the name from “Ask Funcom” to “Message from the King” to fit the new theme of the blog. Speaking of the new theme, I plan to bring more communication on the game with the upcoming updates, developer chatter, and other community ramblings. Hopefully the new theme, new name, and new activity will take this blog to new heights with promoting developer blogs on the site (our goal with MMORPG.com).

Now that’s said and done, let me get everyone up-to-date with the current news with Age of Conan. Then we can save the big guns for the next entry later on.

(Slaughterhouse Cellar - Update 4 Series)

 

Update 4 Series (1.04.0 – 1.04.3)

The recent update is update 1.04.0 and has been the main focus of the development team for the past month. The update itself introduces several brand new high level dungeons to the Hyborian world such as ‘Xibaluku’, ‘The Slaughterhouse Cellar’, ‘Cradle of Decay’, and also the opening up of an additional part of the level 80 raid dungeon ‘Black Ring Citadel’. As you can see, we hit a lot of high end and mid level content with this update. We also addressed various game mechanics with raid loot options, GUI updates, new PvP resources for trade skills, tweaking several raid boss encounters and quests.

 

(Xibaluku - Update 4 Series)

 

Letter from the Game Director

If that big content update wasn’t enough then we have a nice peek into the next big update series from the game director himself. The letter covers the focus with enhancing items and statistics based on the feedback since launch as well some additional tweaks from our developers on ends that we thought could use some loving. Item wise, we have concluded that we had misjudged the importance of items and statistics to character progression. While the intention had always been to be less item-centric than other titles as Craig ‘Silirrion’ Morrison points out, we probably went a little too far in the other direction. Therefore we have set out to expand and develop the RPG system so that it offers better and more interesting character progression and customization.

What this all means from a game director point of view is that the ‘average’ gear will not feel a great change in the game, but you will have the potential to get better by working up towards higher end gear. In short, the new system does incentivize keeping your gear up to date and it adds more weight in the core attributes (i.e.: Strength, Dexterity, etc). You can check out that letter on our community portal.

Ending…

Now that everyone is on the same page on where we are right now, we can shoot out some more juicy topics later in this week or the following week. I know to most this information is not as informative as it should be to the majority but this is only the resurrection post to get us back on track with the blog again. My goal if it wasn’t clear enough is to enhance the blog so it’s a good read for everyone and not just the Conan player. Then of course complete all of this while mending another good source of communication from us to you with all the rawness that should be expected from a great dev-blog written by one community mouthpiece.

Cheers!

ABRaquel writes:

Welcome back,

I know this might be a bit superfluous, but I was wondering when is DX10 enhancement coming out for AoC?

Also are there any plans to invite old players back to check the new content?

Mon Mar 09 2009 2:16PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Thanks ABRaquel!

Well that's been a common question and Craig recently commented on it saying " DX10 version has been on our public test servers for a few months now... We're now pretty close to what we'd consider suitable for wider release, but haven't set a firm date yet..."

So it's there already and given the level of quality we want to ensure with that update, it has taken us somewhat longer than we wanted. However, it's on the way and getting much closer with each day.

As for plans to invite old players back, yes! I can't hash out any other info than it's in the works in the not so distant future. I think it would be wrong of us to say that we weren't thinking about offering at least something to old players that left or new players who maybe want to give it a try. ;)

Mon Mar 09 2009 2:26PM Report
Player_420 writes:

Thanks for the blog post.

I like the fact that you guys are focusing on dungeon/raid content, that's very important for a continuing success. (in my opinion the main reason WoW is still very popular today)

Give me a week to come back, even a weekend and I would absolutly play again.

Mon Mar 09 2009 2:33PM Report
Arawon writes:

Would love to see some depth added to crafting..and as long as I'm wishing...housing.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:03PM Report
Gargola writes:

  Hey Famine, good to see this again!

 

  After any questions or info about the patch cycle 4 gets discussed it would be good to go on the topics that patch cycle 5 is intended to cover, so people can have an idea of what are the immediate plans.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:10PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

I wouldn't put my money on housing but more depth in crafting for sure. The 2 developers I will more than likely work with for the blog is the PvP system designer and the crafting designer. So hopefully we can shed some more info on what's to come with those aspects.

Thus far the PvP system designer was eager to do something on guard concerns or just pvp concerns in general for one blog update later next week or so.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:10PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Gargola: The letter from the game director is a good peek into update 5 series. There is more to that update than just that though and we haven't been too keen on calling that letter update 5 just yet but it's a safe bet.

There was mention in a recent interview about a high end outside playfield much like Ymir's Pass being introduced in update 5 but don't quote me on that. ;)

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:12PM Report
Gargola writes:

 Thanks again Famine, i know as i also read the forums (official ones) often, but for many of those that are currently not playing it and interested out of the positive response of people after the latest changes some more specific mention of the elements to be addressed next might be important in their decision making.

 

  Having the interactivity feel of this blog also produces a very nice environment for this themes to be exposed, in my opinion.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:19PM Report
Sturmrabe writes:

"but you will have the potential to get better by working up towards higher end gear."

Translation: We are going to impliment a EQ/WoW style gear grind treadmill...

 

I am sorely dissapointed!

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:20PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Sturmrabe: The boys over in the official IRC channel miss you. :)

On the comment, I wouldn't go that far to say it's a treadmill but maybe you can be the judge of that when it's implemented in-game and can give us your honest opinion mister Sturm!

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:25PM Report
tryklon writes:

"I wouldn't put my money on housing..."
I am a player with active account, but unfortunately this comment disappointed me very much since this is a long promised feature. Glad to know an answer for sure. Unfortunately this is one of the key features for me and knowing that i shouldnt wait for it i guess its time to move on.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:26PM Report
Vagrant_Zero writes:

 Translation: We are going to impliment a EQ/WoW style gear grind treadmill...

Translation: I want to be uber powerful without putting any work into it.

I applaud the changes and I'll probably come back with update 5 to give AoC another chance.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:29PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Tryklon: It is a key feature for some but the choice of housing over say fixing something that's broken or maybe adding more content does have some priority. I wouldn't say it's something we would never consider doing as we have in previous games but it's not something in the near future for sure. I hope I didn't come off as NEVER, just not right now. :)

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:30PM Report
tryklon writes:

Offcourse i wasn't expecting housing for now, the game has so much to improve first, what i was hoping was to have housing somewhere in the future, maybe on a paid expansion, but what i read was almost a definitive "no". But it's excellent to know that is effectively a future possibility.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:35PM Report
Sevenwind writes:

Famine how often do you plan to update the blog? Weekly? Bi-weekly?

You need to set up a twitter account like Silirrion. That way I can know if a new blog post is posted.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:36PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Yeah for sure! We have the technology and the knowhow to add such a system in for the future. Just nothing I've heard for something recent. I'll for sure keep it in mind now.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:38PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Sevenwind: I can see me doing it weekly. I already have an idea for something tomorrow. I will try to do something like official news one day, CM ranting another, and some Dev input the following. Hopefully more than once or twice a week but for sure at least something every 2 weeks! :D

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:40PM Report
openedge1 writes:

 Well done. Keep this up, and I may have something to blog about again..

Cheers

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:48PM Report
jason6078 writes:

Like most, I left AoC with fond memories of numbers bugs and crashes.  I was happy that WaR was launching when I left AoC.  But with the new WaR patch, it appears Funcom has a chance to grab some of us back.  Please don't dissappoint!  Your combat system was fantastic, and I am looking forward to giving you another try.

Mon Mar 09 2009 3:54PM Report
Haradeas writes:

I was one of the players that were there from the start. To bad after 2 months the raid content was a bit buggy ( to say it very nicely :p )

But I have read some more things about the item infleunce changes ( now this end game content )  and I will try the game again if old players get some free time in the AoC world in the " not so distant future " ;)

Mon Mar 09 2009 4:00PM Report
CujoSWAoA writes:

I really liked how the game started out with its Updates being so frequent and I don't really agree with how they've morphed over the months into the Update frequency of your common MMOs (LOTRO for example).

There's still a lot in this game thats considered to be broken and a lot of eyes still on it judging the game with a harsh scrutiny. I really expected the developers to continue more frequent updates to ensure a sense of frantic eagerness to fix the "leaks" so to speak.  These... huge updates, take a long time and are really spaced out.

Overall, I just worry about AoC's success. I love the game, I love the IDEA of the game. Just want it to succeed.  I pay for an active account but I barely even play the game (Not a lot of time and I really want the game on the XBox more than the PC.)

Mon Mar 09 2009 4:09PM Report
Ozreth writes:

Yep, Im thinking about diving back into this game but it will definitely take a "welcome back to hyboria" campaign type of thing for old players.

Mon Mar 09 2009 4:09PM Report
Antalicus writes:

There has been talk about the possibility to add dyes for armor/clothing to allow players to further customize their look and set them apart from others. Has there been any progress with this?

Mon Mar 09 2009 4:25PM Report
CujoSWAoA writes:

Dyes, Housing... these additions would be fantastic! But I wouldn't expect a Dev to take them seriously until around June of 2010.

Mon Mar 09 2009 5:01PM Report
Frobner writes:

I got a pretty simple question really.  Alot of the orginal 800 k ppl felt they were cheated with an unfinished game.  To this day most of these ppl are still frustrated by the fact that Funcom is using this money (the orginal  box sales) to finish the actual product. 

My question.  What is Funcom doing to regain any credibilty after the launch of the game?  Alot of ppl feel a great unjustice is beeing done - while a game is beeing fixed up with money of unsatisfied custimors.

Now - the answer can not be... "We are fixing things up that were not ready in the fist 30 days"   Cause the ppl that bought the game at start (and were pushed to preorder with one sited information) have no choise if they use their 30 day sub 10 months later when some things have been fixed. 

Does Funcom really not see how ppl have all right to feel that huge injustice is going on ?  Is it normal in todays markets that any product is launched half finished (still KNOWN to not be ready) and then fixhed up and finished FOR THE MONEY that the early custimors payed for that SAME unfinished product ?

And finally - Does Funcom really think that ppl will just forgive and forget ? 

Mon Mar 09 2009 5:07PM Report
Paks writes:

Will FC allow transfers, even paid ones, to the EU RP-PvE server for interested RPers?  Many RPers I've talked to that canceled because of that whole situation would find that an interesting prospect that could draw them back to the game.  Or is the EU-RP-PvE server gone?

 

 

Mon Mar 09 2009 5:47PM Report
astrob0y writes:

Welcome back to the forum mr blogger. Hope you will survive in this hard and harsh part of the earth called the internet.

Mon Mar 09 2009 6:00PM Report
dpollack writes:

Yes, I put the money down of the collectors edition of this game, and I NEVER had the opportunity to use my multiple friend invite keys or anything...

There needs to be a new campaign of inviting the intial subscribers back to play AoC and see the changes... FOR FREE. A one week invite would be enough I believe to see these "great updates." Because everyone is aware of how things went at release and the messy following. Many players felt jaded and cheated of their game experience. So I would expect some big steps to improve the horried impression left by Funcom.

I rolled a dark templar, a class that TO THIS DAY, still considered the weakest contender in PVP and medicore in PVE. I hope Funcom has improved  on updating and fixing these classes, and yes I am aware of the new proposed "Class Leads." I hope something postive comes out for dark templars regarding this.  But you know, I have heard the promises, and more promise, and more promises... and well, I don't believe any of it until I see done and ingame anymore. But nothing has been done in my mind to warrent renewing my subscription, resignations or not.

Mon Mar 09 2009 7:17PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Good points Dpollack. Hope to prove you wrong and show you more. Toss me some DT feedback via PM if you got some good posts on it that you agree on. ;)

Mon Mar 09 2009 7:38PM Report
openedge1 writes:

@FC-Famine 

**Toss me some DT feedback**

I am sorry, but, even though I like the DT as a PvE class, I can easily show you an AoC forum on your website called Classes, with one for DT with hundreds of thousands of posts with feedback.

I really hate to see that comment, when you guys REALLY should be on the ball and KNOW what the problem is for DT. We as players have known for almost a year!

Thanks

Mon Mar 09 2009 9:02PM Report
AmazingAvery writes:

Hey Openedge, I think it is a mixture of getting feedback from different sources that have different takes on things which can been seen from all different types of forums for AoC around.  Taking it all in would give a better idea, would it not. The Advocate feedback from the class leads will be coming soon, and in the meantime it is all good to collate it all up.

Mon Mar 09 2009 9:41PM Report
AmazingAvery writes:

@ Famine, those two devs you spoke about earlier wouldn't happen to be Didek and Ilaliya would they? mmorpg.com has a lot of crafting aficionado's and would make for excellent conversation.

Mon Mar 09 2009 9:47PM Report
FC-Famine writes:

AmazingAvery: Yes, the perfect team I think. :)

Mon Mar 09 2009 9:50PM Report
bigdaddysfe writes:

I just had a quick question. Whatever happened to the Powerpoints system? That kind of died out around the end of last year and haven't heard anything about it since then.

I know you said you wanted to put a priority on rewarding the customers that kept their accounts active during some of the more trying time. Can you elaborate any further on where that is right now?

 

Mon Mar 09 2009 9:55PM Report
Jurred writes:

 Been wanting to try this game for a while now, but after hearing all the horrible things I'd heard I never had the balls to spend 50 bucks on it. Was browsing steam games and noticed it for 20 bucks, bought it. Terrible experince actually getting it launched, but so far the game is great (although I'm only lvl 11.) You really should contact steam about the launcher issue. First it looped the same 5mb patch for about 2 min before I figured out what it was doing. Then after it was completely updated and I clicked play it would just loop back to the updater (it's a steam issue I know, but you should still get it worked out with them.) Had to figure out what directory it was installed in, which was C:/Program Files/Steam/steamapps/common  Yea I wouldn't be surprised if some less determined people just gave up on it. It drove me crazy until I finally thought to look on the steam forums.

Mon Mar 09 2009 10:06PM Report
sspider writes:

Thanks for another avenue of communication between the devs and the (potential) players.

I just recently reactivated my account along with some friends and we are all pleasantly surprised with the absence of any technical issues thus far. Good job.

Looking forward, I will like to know what is the more likely time for Update 5 to launch. Are we looking at 1 month, 2 months or 3 months or more? I am very eager to see items matter more and the changes to classes' abilities, feats etc.

Mon Mar 09 2009 10:27PM Report
Jasma writes:

I just like to see outcome of that Advocates program now.

Mon Mar 09 2009 11:22PM Report
kremath writes:

Please do not make items more important :C

 

If you do, make it easier to obtain/customize.

 

Farming bosses =/= skill.

Tue Mar 10 2009 12:55AM Report
mackdawg19 writes:

Hello Famine! =) Didn't know if you mentioned it, but here's Famines twitter.

http://twitter.com/TehFamine

Everything seems to be coming along great, keep it up. Nice to see the blog back in action.

Tue Mar 10 2009 1:05AM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Hah, my twitter is non-official though. I only have it to follow our game directors twitter (being it's new).

http://twitter.com/Silirrion

Tue Mar 10 2009 1:36AM Report
grumbleweed writes:

Any plans to add a pay-pal subscription option? This is the one reason that stops me coming back for another go.

Tue Mar 10 2009 5:17AM Report
Lothlore writes:

Glad to see this Blog,and intend to check it regularly. I have been waiting for a chance to try it out for myself,especially because I have heard that  even though the game had a rough launch,it has much improved,with even more on the way,so articles such as this are a big help to me. Still curious if,in future updates,the pve - side of the game is going to get some attention too,as not everyone likes pvp. (no offense to those who do-it's just a personal preference of mine). In closing,thanks again for this article,keep them coming  please : )

Tue Mar 10 2009 5:18AM Report
Arislan writes:

Hi Famin,

Sometimes I think to come back and have a look but since the state of game at release was horrible I am kinda scared to come back.

Well I see a lot of improvments but still there are some points where me and my friends are still sceptical.

I did not like to see the Borderlands as an exact copy of the "guildtown lands" it was a big turn off the first time I went to those lands.. Also These Border Kingdoms were just as small... I always hoped for more content in them than just sieging since I was playing on a pve server. Another thing which turned me off was that all guild towns looked the same there was really nothing which made your Guildtown look different than others.... well there were a lot of small things...

And hwo is the visual diversity now in AoC? I just remember the tiem where all the mages look the same... last week I saw a picture here where a guys did wear the same robe which I weared as HoX from lvl 40 until 80..... like many others too....

Tue Mar 10 2009 5:51AM Report
sigamon writes:

Like that person stated earlier, the Dark Templar needs extensive work. and its annoying to see famine and avery comment on how they want feedback about it or whatever.  I was hoping the DT would rock, I always gravitate towards classes that mix evil magic and melee together.  But, god damn does the DT suck ass.  In PvE I can barely hold my own against things my squishy toons can desimate, and in PvP they are a joke, dt's get rolled so easily. 

The only way to try to stay alive and do any damage is circling around your target swinging.

Also, is there every gonna be actually drinking in the game? Tons of bars, no beers.  And I want my drunken brawling.

Tue Mar 10 2009 7:38AM Report
abal writes:

@sigamon when was the last time you tried the dark templar?

Tue Mar 10 2009 7:46AM Report
abal writes:

As an example, one of the top aoc pvp players in the world is a dark templer: (player Maja from EU server Fury, guild Futilez)

http://aoc.yg.com/profile?h=FInEUmXv

Tue Mar 10 2009 8:03AM Report
Sturmrabe writes:

Is it just me or is twitter the most openly gay thing since facebook?

Tue Mar 10 2009 8:22AM Report
paintchips writes:

I'm still concerned about basic visual diversity of armours, when I last played that part of the game was severley lacking although I heard speciality sets got released for the higher tier/end game players. But what about basic armour diversity for everyone else. Any plans to fix one of the most crucial motivations or hook for PvE play?

Tue Mar 10 2009 8:31AM Report
Sturmrabe writes:

I think more diverse armor is actually more important than armor bonuses...

Tue Mar 10 2009 8:38AM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Diversity in armor of course has been touched and improving. I can see it improving more after the items and statistics update because it will increase the value of more items that were not considered useful to specific classes. ;)

Tue Mar 10 2009 8:48AM Report
Blaukool writes:

In my opinion there is only on viable solution for AoC's problems: Kill it. Put all the developers into AO, port it to the dx10 engine of AoC and fix the server sync issues there. We'd all be alot happier:

- The anti-aoc fanboys because it finaly faild

- The AO community because the best game ever is finaly rescude from the brink of destruction

- mmorpg.com because there will be topics for years and years of flaming

(Alternativly you could put the developers into TSW, would be okay too)

Tue Mar 10 2009 9:39AM Report
anahka2309 writes:

As has been asked before but got no reply, what about the people who bought the (Collector's) box back when the game launched but got stuck with an unfinished and let's be fair, unplayable game? Our money has now been used to actually somewhat finish the game.

I was in the closed beta from the start and was very active on the forums. I posted a lot of feedback and buglists. Made countless reports in-game. 99% of that was still in the Live-game. 

I have lost all faith in FunCom and out of principle almost refuse to play AoC ever again. Now I'm sure you're ready to re-launch the game again in May or something; for the 1 year anniversary and now that the game is actually somewhat done and some of the promises have been kept.  

What do you expect from the people that got suckered in on empty promises and pretty screenshots? A free-play-weekend won't make up for all that. 

Tue Mar 10 2009 10:02AM Report
bigdaddysfe writes:

Thanks for ignoring my question, I apprciate it. Well now that I feel like a douche for having my account active for all these months when I haven't even been able to play it because of some customer loyalty program that doesn't even exist now, I think I'll make this right and cancel like I should have done a long long time ago.

 

Thanks...for nothing.

Tue Mar 10 2009 10:27AM Report
Shadowslady writes:

Famine: I am one of those many returned people and I  have a great guild, but as far as leveling up my other characters since I was gone for 6 months, its a little hard to find people to finish the group quests. Any ETA  on an easy system to find fellow questers. I love AoC cause everyone is basically a mark , an enemy, so when you do find someone its not weird, its not like we're going to be best friends or even talk. We might kill each other right after, but right now lets go kill the thing on the map. But I wish there was an easier way to find people.  If you need ideas, I know you can't steal a copyrighted system, but look into DDO's system, its one of the best imho.

Tue Mar 10 2009 10:30AM Report
sspider writes:

@anahka2309:

I fail to see what you want out of your post. From the sounds of it it just seems like you want the whole of Funcom to come to your doorsteps and beg and cry for your forgiveness.

Tue Mar 10 2009 11:02AM Report
Kainis writes:

And this is why I stick to just making the pretty graphics. Most else has to do with programming, and everyone wants to be an armchair programmer. "We need this, not this!!" , "WTF, THIS is what is important, not catering to those!!" In the end, no one ever wins. But with rich, well done graphics people can more easily forgive that they got a nickel spork compromise, instead of self-important silver spoons.

Tue Mar 10 2009 11:05AM Report
Antalicus writes:

On the balance issue, why are Tempests of Sets so evidently powerful and still being increased in power each patch. I don't think any class should be nerfed because this hurts the game but please make it more reasonable. The fact that I can be one shot by Storm Crown, an ability that is passive and takes absolutely no player skill to use, just seems unbelievably wrong. You should inform whoever is in class balancing that they are sending the wrong message to player when the changes they make seem like they come from someone who doesn't even have a proper understanding of the game itself.

Tue Mar 10 2009 11:26AM Report
Antalicus writes:

On Armor/weapon Diversity:

It seems like they are doing a good job on making new designs but these designs take time to create. You could make use of old designs by simply  changing their colors. I have seen a lot of appealing designs but do not use them because they are green items or very low level. Why not bring those back in a new color or high reflective surfaces. You could also take a model and retexture it. (rusty texture and shiney texture for higher level)

There are many ways to reach your goals and satisfy players with half the effort. Why don't we see this?

Tue Mar 10 2009 11:36AM Report
anahka2309 writes:

 @ sspider: I don't expect anything from FunCom, that's the entire point. But I bet they'll make a big deal out of inviting the old players back because "the game is so good and they had a great launch last year". And here they are inviting (read: begging) us back because just a fraction of those 800k players at launch is left. 

More hype. More promises. More dissapointment and wasted money.

If they admit to making mistakes and releasing well before it was done I might consider it. I'm not looking for discussion and I'm not asking FC to come to my door and apologise. I strongly feel they screwed me over with the first launch and I want FC to know that. 

Again, just my opinion. No point in throwing a fanboy tantrum. 

Tue Mar 10 2009 12:39PM Report
Fosheezy writes:

The one thing that made the game a downer was that there was no End Game Content.  And during the middle of dungeon runs you would get memory leak errors and crash to desktop.  When you logged back in your were then Group Bugged so you could not even join back in to the fight. 

On a comment on the amor pieces the epic stuff was totally broken and had crap stats for being intended epic gear.  The graphics were good but if the game is unstable the good graphics are usless because you cant stay in the game long enough to enjoy them.  Also they needed to invest some more art work time in to the look of the armor pieces because they all look plain and the same, there is no distinguising epic looks to them. 

The only thing that i can think of that is more scarryier is a big dude with huge deadly looking armor running at you to kill you or other way around you with armor going after them.  I think warhammer has the coolest armor and detail.  So having a DX10 Capable game would make it look sick.  So untill they improve that stuff i wont be playing AOC for a while.

Tue Mar 10 2009 1:29PM Report
paintchips writes:

Thanks for answering my question, sorting out variety will definitely go a long way to keeping your pvers in game, varied visual item progression from 1-80 is a big hook for many. Any plans to switch BoP flags from items dropping in epic instances to BoE, getting full sets before you out level them  is hard enough, but it's a bigger shame leaving good gear behind to decay when someone else can buy it or trade it for the piece they need. 

Tue Mar 10 2009 2:23PM Report
Antalicus writes:

I agree that the bind on pick up in raids is quite annoying. You never get the feeling that you can go on a raid and later help your friends out with gear. If having bind on a equip is not an option then at least make it so it detects if you have that class or not and then doesn't drop it at all. No one likes to see items go to waste.

Tue Mar 10 2009 2:54PM Report
rawgutts writes:

This is a interesting read.

I am one of those first CE people, that turned into bitching about FunCom for the past year.

however I do believe that folks need a second shot, at least one time. So I took the time today to do the 2 hour install of the game and also the 3+ gig download of patches that is still going on as I type this.  We will now see what is or what isn't going on in Hyboria these days.

 

PS: MMORPG fix this crazy editor please.

Tue Mar 10 2009 6:28PM Report
Fosheezy writes:

I would like to see a good review from you rawgutts on how it currently is and if the patches have really changed things in the game or is it still lacking content as it was before when they released it.  One thing that i would suggest to funcom is look at some of the game dynamics that are in Warhammer Online with how they have that class Loot detection system. 

The only downside is that you always get crap that is not for you but that would mean you would have to intereact with other players to make trade for stuff you have that they want.  Also the crafting was a little broken in AOC and the whole city thing was nice but hardly anyone ever went there so what is the point of having a city that hardly anyone will see.

When i heard that the game was coming out i was looking in to the manual and it had even mentioned that you could build your own house but that feature was not even incorporated in to the game yet.  One thing that i think would be awsome is to have things in dungeons that you could interact with like Levers to open doors and different other stuff.

Tue Mar 10 2009 8:29PM Report
Atrious writes:

I enjoyed AoC a lot, But my main concern was the lack of Guild functions, Mass PvP and high level content. Though the content seems to have made its way onto live.

What I'd Like to see Some added Zones exclusively made for PvP, A wider variety of Gear, As rolling multiple toons The Quest rewards are all the same and no one wears anything outside of that.

Be nice to change the Quest loot to something Like " Armor attachments " or upgrade gems, Thus You can have a wide variety of Armor and Clothing, and update your stuff with the Armor Attachment, weapons with weapon attachments.

 

Tue Mar 10 2009 10:44PM Report
anduz writes:

I'd like to see three things in Age of Conan.

Territorial combat, and guild cities clearly aren't working. They didn't work in Shadowbane, DAOC, Warhammer or even eve-online and they didn't work in Age of Conan. What works is a steady income pve resource that you'll want to take and keep forever because there isn't enough of them for everyone. That'll give you a fixed location with constant fights.

A solid player ecconomy. Bind on pickup is crap, it ruins trade and it gives developers an excuse not to make crafted weapons the best around. Raiders shouldn't be rewarded over solo players, pvp players or whatever and the school of thought which thinks raiders should be rewarded because raiding is harder is upright stupid. A good player ecconomy rewards everyone who works hard regardless of how they do it, it allows for everything to be sold, and it lets the people who work the hardest sell the biggest items. Give raiders more money, or whatever, but if you give them extremely good bind on pick up items your game will never have an interesting ecconomy.

Death penalties need to matter. I used to be a big pvp player and I've played a lot of games with though death penalties and you'd think now that I've gotten old and become a complete and utter carebear I'd prefer it if things were safe. But I hate it. The thrill of traveling in an area where I know horrible things can happen is as amazing for pve players as it is for pvp players.

Wed Mar 11 2009 9:25AM Report
Fosheezy writes:

i do agree on the whole economy thing.  Tthe BOP items really make it tough to help others out or to make profit.  The one thing that i do understand from the developers is that they are trying to prevent the Gold Farmers and gold buyers from inflating the market which ends up being the Killing of a game because people are too broke to buy the items.  The death penalty thing would make things more interesting but i do agree that they should have a zone that pvp'ers can go in to if they want to be in combat with other players.

The one thing that griped me was that when i was trying to quest in White sands i would always get ganked by high level players so it made leveling 10 times worse because you could not get anything done and then they would spawn kill you over and over which ruins the game for you.  Raiding is alwasy tough for the fact that you have to cordinate with other players to get a group togeather to run dungeons which is usually a key aspect for PVE.  Getting gear drops for doing it is good but as my self and everyone else has mentioned the stats of the gear that drop for epic items are crap when green items have better stats than the epic stuff.

As you mentioned the crafting that system was broke to.  The mats you needed were retarted to get and hard to figure out where to get them.  And with Potain and all those places having the nodes to get resources from makes it hard if everyone else is farming that stuff.  So i hope that they have found or will find a balance in all that.

Wed Mar 11 2009 10:56AM Report
Lolpigs writes:

@ Famine

It is good to see you back, however many like myself who were SEVERLY burnt by this game will want something before returning to the game. From a marketing perspective noone is going to believe anything really that is typed here.

I bought 2 collectors editions, and suffered the same fate as above, not able to use my buddy keys and a game that was fatally flawed beyond level 20. I felt and still do fee VERY ripped off.

Things that I feel are still a concern - high level content, middle level content, armor visuals and itemisation in general, crafting being boring and broken, not being able to group on quests you had already done, instances instances instances everywhere, that discouraged group play and made game play irritating and annoying. Where is our seamless world?

If these things were addressed I would consider coming back for a free week or month of play.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still angry becuase I was lied to as a consumer. I also love the IP and what Funcom were GOING to do with this game. I agree with previous posters. Implement it or forget about it.

Thu Mar 12 2009 7:36AM Report
FC-Famine writes:

Lolpigs: Understandable but as you can see the recent update as well some of the ones way back before have addressed mid level content. We are also hitting high level content more and more with this update and the coming updates.

The only thing we have not addressed on your 'concern list' is the armor visuals and reduction of instances. Mid to High end content have all been added since launch. We are hitting high end now more than ever and well crafting it's getting much loving in the next update(s).

Visual diversity on the other hand is not as big of an issue as making items more useful to the player as well ensuring items of level mean something at that level. ;)

Thu Mar 12 2009 12:42PM Report
Tarka writes:

Good to see you guys beginning to create a bigger public presence Famine.  I look forward to following this blog....especially if you can squeeze some info out of Sil on when 1.05 is gunna hit the Test server ;)

Thu Mar 12 2009 12:48PM Report
Lanfeare writes:

Nice to see a blog update .. 8)

 

In an answer to a previous post about player housing you said it was not a major priority so at least we know that which is good.

 

But for an idea in that way could automatic housing ever happen in your guild city to "bring it to life".

 

I.E. If you have a T1 guild city then you get some peasants move in, a T2 guild city some minor nobles move in and finally with a T3 city then you get full blown Lords move in with buildings to reflect that.

 

Would certainly liven up the guild city more then the half a dozen guards walking around does.

 

No idea of the complexity for doing this but it would be cool to see the city habitated.

Thu Mar 12 2009 1:05PM Report
Lolpigs writes:

@ Famine, thanks for the response but I disagree with you on Visual Diversity. I think it is just as important as itemisation.

Defeats the purpose of getting "kicking butt staff of doom" when it looks the same as a level 1 staff. Do you understand what I mean? It offers customisation and the ability to make your character into whatever look you want. Visuals are very important. Its why being able to dye your armor and create and collect unique looking equipment is important to MMO'ers. Don't underestimate it.

Will you be considering a kind of apperance type system for clothing? This allows people who role play, or people who are sick of boring looking armor to change their looks.

Also, with crafting, is it going to be that you can create some really kick ass items? Or just be like WOW's crafting was for years which was pretty useless compared to raiding gear? Have you looked to more complicated questing systems like EQ2 used to have to drive some variety and player progression? Or will it simply be click create and you have a perfect item type crafting?

Bar room Brawling - Will this ever be implimented?

Instances - Has the issue with not being able to assist others on quests and instances when you have completed their quests been corrected? This had a very negative impact on grouping when I played at launch. As did the zoning issue with being in the same town but not being in the same zone. Trying to change zones was cumbersome and frustrating trying to find the right one.

I apprecaite the updates from you, and glad you understand why people are very wary of giving Funcom any more of their money.

Thu Mar 12 2009 5:16PM Report
sabbatai writes:

 I played this game at launch and for a few month after.  One thing that I absolutely hated was that any suggestions made by ANYONE that someone disagreed with were automatically deemed as having come from a "wow player".   I played WoW sure... and it was completely different (note I didn't say "better") than AoC.

One of my main suggestions was always that there should be more varied looks for the armor and weapons.  That was almost universally greeted with the response "You want big glowy shoulder pads and flaming swords go back to WoW!  This game is about realism!"

1.  Realism?  I wasn't aware magic, even low-magic, snake-demons, and respawning were realistic!

2.  Who said anything about glows or flames?  Armor in real life was varied and the crafter of any particular piece of armor or at least the nation or region from which it came.. easily discernible just by looking at it and having a little experience.

Graphics aren't the end all be all, or else AoC would be the most popular MMO on the block... but there is something to be said for getting a new piece of armor or a new sword and having it not look the same as the last 15 you got... or even worse...NOT as cool as the first 15.

Items being a deciding factor in a 1v1 battle is not a BAD thing... it's just not what AoC had set out to do.  It has it's place in games like WoW and others but AoC set out to do something different.

I respect that and yet I fail to see how a different looking weapon or helmet is going to automatically mean that it has +5000 str attached to it as well.

Thu Mar 12 2009 8:53PM Report
paintchips writes:

Famine

Visual Diversity is as important as itemization, people aren't going to spend hours, days, weeks or years playing your game when all you have to offer them in diversity is a few armour sets at each tier (that no one can get a group for half the time or trade) and a handful at end game. People shouldn't have to slog through 80 levels to end game to get a small trickle of diversity, why have levels at all if it's all about end game?

For many end game is 'the end'. casual  players want to play through your content and be rewarded for the effort, with nice little visual upgrades along the way and the promise of shiny things to come in later levels. They don't want to be punished for not being lvl 80.

Despite the awesome graphics and DX10 on the horizon this game looks really, really boring. Who's going to look at your brown sack wearing barbs and your tin foil wrapped conqs and think 'awesome!'. If anything this game punishes you for progressing, one level your wearing some awesome heavy armour from Cistern the next your wearing tin foil mail that every other 30-80 is wearing.

Don't underestimate visual progression, it's one of the top reasons why AoC does not have the numbers it deserves.

Thu Mar 12 2009 10:38PM Report
Lokix writes:

Welcome back, Famine.

I hope the next entries will bring us some good/fresh news. Because, at this moment I only read the same things everywhere.

Fri Mar 13 2009 3:53AM Report
Brizahd writes:

Any chance funcom would allow me to reroll my lvl 80 Dark Templar to something else?

Fri Mar 13 2009 5:33AM Report
marcust writes:

As a recent resubber I'm enjoying starting afresh on a RP-PVP server and am happy that the major issues with the game have or will very soon be addressed. In particular I'm very happy that lootable resources have been introduced to add more spice to the PvP. With the disappointing release of the first snadbox full loot title recently I think you could really differentiate this game by adding more "Partial-loot" features, maybe not a persons equipped items but a % of their onhand gold and a % of the items they currently carry in their bags would add that adrenalin boost to the game that is missing from the "theme-park" games. Nice comeback guys. 

Fri Mar 13 2009 7:14AM Report
alphawolf76 writes:

FC has done nothing but lied since day 1 but i supported you all the way being a real R.E.Howard fan prior to the game  i really hoped it would come good AFTER ALL THE PROMISES.

things i thought would be a great but turned out a total dissapointment.


1.Mounted combat is not what i we were lead to belive:
2.Guild options have been pathetic form day 1:- where is the option to create custom ranks or set diplomacy to other guilds after a full year this is very poor .

3.Guild citys are such boring places with no real reason to visit
4.Border kingdoms ,just an empty  clone
zone

5.No pvp Gladiator arenas even thought it was suggested proir to launch not even an option to duel; guild members for practice still :
6.Drunken brawling being removed before it was even in game like promised before launch and bing replaced with absolutly NOTHING!.
7.Taverns are a let down, dull boring places with no life or reason to spend time in not very realistic IMO as i know the conan lore very well and thats not how R.E.Howard described the inn's in hyboria, i was expecting something like i had experianced in the witcher game where you were able to get drunk /pit fight with other drunks/play table games and gamble ,and get so drunk that you had to stumble home all over the place in a drunk stuper with full drunk vision FX.
8.Things to do after 80 apart from pvp & raids what is there ,there sould be more social content and interaction to do between players to fill the gaps.

on the plus side pvp combat is good apart from the necro and tos 1 shotts
PS: GM's sorry i cant help you have a nice day(((((((( 9 times out of 10.

11.DX10 also promised @ launch 1 year on stilll not even done.

12 .no social activites or games between players.

ps: sorry for such a nagaitve response but i cant post in the AOC FORUMS anymore as it just gets censored out  .i loved this game once and wanted to stay till the end but FC and there METHODS KILLED IT FOR ME 

 

Fri Mar 13 2009 4:25PM Report
tryklon writes:

alphawolf, its a game for god sake, you really need to get out more, chill out man. You dont like it? Play something else.... take care of your blood pressure mate

Fri Mar 13 2009 11:37PM Report
arctarus writes:

 Need new starting area.... 

Sat Mar 14 2009 7:32AM Report
FC-Famine writes:

@lolpigs: I hear what you're saying but look at it from the point of view as getting a nice new staff that visually diverse and not needing to wear it because the stats are not as valuable to you as it should be. Looking at that item, one process has to come first before deciding what it should look like and that would be the stats itself in this example. So in order to do the process correct we should look at the value of the item via stats etc first then focus on increasing visual diversity in our game. The revamp will help with that aspect a little more then we can focus on item visual diversity next but I think itemization would come next then on to more enhancements like visual because we all know how important both of those are to the player.

Sat Mar 14 2009 10:21AM Report
placibo writes:

First of all thanx famine for renewing the blog :)

Ide like to ask a few questions

1. The state of the DT , why has it been this long for changes when other classes have had changes ?

2. Is the DT going to have a rework , cos it needs one ?

 

The main problems with DT is poorly designed feat tree,s and useless scalling of feats , now i know these issues are not a quick fix and need a lot of work , but dont you think you should have done something ? A lot of people have felt cheated on this subject

 

 

Sun Mar 15 2009 5:23AM Report
Kordesh writes:

 So, basically, the gist of what I'm seeing here is 

"The game's not doing too well, so we're going to cash out and go for the WoW demographic by making the game a gear fest now."

Super. 

Sun Mar 15 2009 2:44PM Report
Gunharp writes:

Despite the negative comments (the failcom crowd seems to seep up everywhere around here) I am very appreciative of your renewed intrest in the blog. Thank you for also responding to peoples questions. It's been a very infromative read!

Mon Mar 16 2009 9:30PM Report
morpheusxp writes:

I just recently returned to the game and I must say I am really impressed. I was one of the original beta testers and had a miserable experiance that really put me off. But I found a really good deal on the Special Edition of the game that I couldn't pass up. I am loving every minute of it. All the graphical hiccups that plagued the beta are gone. The other players are a joy to play with. I am just having a great time. I am so glad I decided to give King Conan a second chance.

Mon Mar 16 2009 10:25PM Report
Grenoir writes:

If it is not very hard for u can u say  when exactly Directx 10 will be poured into the game ( what month? March? April? June?). Also, u have mentioned that some features included in DirectX 10 will be avaliable for DirectX 9. Would be HDR and advanced physics of environment (moving trees and grass) avaliable for Dx 9? I would be gratefull for your reply.

Age of Conan is a really cool game!!! U have done a lot of work since the release date, so keep on doing such good things!

Tue Mar 17 2009 3:23PM Report
Grinthel writes:

@anahka2309:

 

I thought AoC Closed-Beta was free...

 

that means you got to play the best mmo on the market for free for however long you were in there,

 

AoC is nearly perfect now and to still bash the hand that fed you all the gaming conversations, when you were a beta player to keep you at the cutting-edge of the mmo scene is just bitter dude.

Wed Mar 18 2009 5:36PM Report
Lizante writes:

AoC is far from perfect LOL.  No problem, NO game is perfect.

As for itemization, Famine's explanation regarding improving item stats first and leaving that item's appearance like all the rest until they get around to updating the art later is pretzel logic.  The game director should harmonize the art and the itemization d00ds to orchestrate a finished, professional item.  But then again, FunCom was never very good at offering a finished, professional product, so I don't expect itemization to be done correctly in AoC, either.

I, too, was in the closed beta and in the release game until July.  I, too, love the lore of Hyboria and I had (and still have) high hopes for FunCom's Age of Conan.  While significant improvements have been made to this game and I want to add my sincere appreciation for the work of Mr. Morrison and his team since he took over from Gaute, the reality of life is AoC is a long way off from acceptable. 

However, I haven't removed the game from my HDD and I continue to monitor AoC's development in the hopes of actually returning to playing the game.  Progress has been slow, but encouraging. 

I'm thinking FunCom will have a "welcome back" program for people like me.  It will offer one month of free play and if we resubscribe to AoC, we'll have the opportunity to invite friends to try (or return) to the game as well.  But don't look for this until sometime after the next major update -- AoC just isn't ready yet.

Mon Mar 23 2009 10:05AM Report
Brizahd writes:

Are there any solo dungeons besides the villas to do at 80? 

So I resubbed to see what has changed.  The game seems to run much better.  Plus some of my melee combos seem to have been shortened.  I was sad to see much of the same stuff as before on the trader though.   After being gone for almost a year I had thought it would be neat to see what new shiny items might be on there.

 

Sun Mar 29 2009 1:42PM Report

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