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MMORPG | Setting:Fantasy | Status:Final  (rel 05/20/08)  | Pub:Eidos Interactive
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Age of Conan: Unchained Videos: Erling Ellingson Interview Part Two (6:13)

Today, we present part two of our Leipzig interview with Funcom Product Manager Erling Ellingsen. In this half of the interview, Ellingsen talks about upcoming content, the reason for the upcoming expansion, why they can't give us specific subscriber numbers, and more.

Today, we present part two of our Leipzig interview with Funcom Product Manager Erling Ellingsen. In this half of the interview, Ellingsen talks about upcoming content, the reason for the upcoming expansion, why they can't give us specific subscriber numbers, and more.
Duration: 6:13
Views: 7,114  71 comments
Game: Age of Conan: Unchained
View More Age of Conan: Unchained Videos...
Buckarama writes: Customer service is first. hehe Fri Sep 05 2008 7:21AM Report
Arawon writes: Glittering generalities. Fri Sep 05 2008 7:41AM Report
afoaa writes: Well regarding customer service, now that the servers are practically empty then it takes only minutes to get help with practically everything. Fri Sep 05 2008 8:05AM Report
FaTKaT writes: sometimes it still takes hours for the support to react Fri Sep 05 2008 8:34AM Report
AmazingAvery writes: Good Stuff Fri Sep 05 2008 8:42AM Report
slipline writes: glad to see that they confirm over half of those who purchased the game have now left. Fri Sep 05 2008 8:43AM Report
biplex writes: It's incredible that there are people who still get this man seriously... Fri Sep 05 2008 9:10AM Report
Rohne writes: You already were stupid enough to commit a launch date Erling. Then.. lol... you are adding gear to the game.. you do realise that a lot of people would have kept playing if decent gear was available in game.. you do realise that don't you Erling.. you idiot.... At this rate the PvP patch will be ready late 2009, put your expansion back to 2011.. seriously no one will buy it in a year... Lol customer service.. you have no customer service... you can't call automated responses a service.. Lol 400,000... no way.. Thanks for a brilliant 2nd half interview Jon. Fri Sep 05 2008 9:18AM Report
ed515 writes: 5 months ago i defended this game to the last. after all the stuff (way too many things to list, but the people who played it will know) that happened I'm just plain disappointed. Fri Sep 05 2008 9:49AM Report
sionide writes: Well the way this man lies through his teeth and spins the truth, I bet if he was called on it his "over 400,000 active players" means over 400,000 active player characters, since 1 account has multiple characters. Funcom is in serious trouble with their lies and crap of a game (I tell my friends who didn't play that this game was in alpha/early-beta stages on launch). I don't see a future for this game in the game industry, who will ever buy another game from them? Fri Sep 05 2008 10:46AM Report
verenov writes: My wife and I left AoC over a month ago. I was sorely disappointed in the bugs prevalent in the game. Also, the lack of content was really disappointing at higher level (60+). However, the combat did make it an extent. But, ultimately the downfall were the OOM's, mount/dismount bugs, etc. So, we left. Over the past week one of our guildies at AoC has sent me a few emails describing how much better the game is and that now they have a Battlekeep and that the Sieges should be in the near-future. From what he says the OOM's are nearly non-existent and the content/instancing is much better. Of course, my wife and I are now re-engrossed in WoW (we're wanting to experience the high-end raiding, as we've never done that before although we've played WoW for about 2 years...alt-ittus, i suppose :P..), so a return to AoC for us is really non-viable atm. But, I just wanted to let everyone know that I've been hearing some good things about AoC in the past week or so. So, you all might want to give it a try...again...or not. I just wanted to share what I heard. Peace. Fri Sep 05 2008 10:53AM Report
maveric007 writes: Sure would be nice if we had some additional non raid 80 content rather then 55/60.... How many players are still at that level now? Fri Sep 05 2008 11:02AM Report
Player_420 writes: very great interview again. He says he cant go into specific number blah blah blah blah, but then he says, but we do have OVER 400,000 ACTIVE players. But wait you just said u cant go into specific numbers, but you do have OVER 400,000? This guy just really needs to stop workig for the company. I have a lvl 80 and 56 and 48 in AoC and I have never been more disappointed and let down by a company ever. The 40 zone, and 55+ zone was talked about a month after release. Everyone is past those levels now... Fri Sep 05 2008 11:16AM Report
verenov writes: If you notice he said that he cannot give *specific* numbers concerning subscribed/active players. The 400,000+ active players comes from a statement by *FUNCOM*, not himself. He was just stating that the 400,000 number was released by Funcom, and that he was surprised that they would *even* release a subscriber number due to today's MMO market. He never stated that the 400,000+ number was *his* number. He was instructed to *not* give a number. *shrugs* Not really important, but might want to pay attention to what was actually said. Fri Sep 05 2008 11:23AM Report
Kaynos1972 writes: WOW was not talking about an expansion 3 months after release. These guys need to get their pririty straight. Fri Sep 05 2008 11:29AM Report
Player_420 writes: lol @ verenov Fri Sep 05 2008 11:37AM Report
Reborn17 writes: Our #1 priority is delivering what the players want" "Customer service comes before everything." This dude is just twisted. 400k active players at the end of the 2nd quarter(Jun 30) means that 40 days after release half of the units sold were no longer active. Thats losing about 10k players a day. At even half that rate, AoC should be a wasteland by now. "Ya tell one lie its leads to another, ya tell 2 lies to cover each other..." Fri Sep 05 2008 1:09PM Report
chryses writes: The game isn't dead by any stretch. Each time I log in I see several people and some areas packed out. Just because a gamer doesn't like this particular MMO doesn't mean no one else does. This interview is much better as it at least asked what the future development is. Fri Sep 05 2008 2:14PM Report
Xenosaiyan writes: Well, I hope Funcom hangs in there, for the past few months I've been wishing bad things to happen to this company, but now that WAR is getting ready for release, I feel sorry for Funcom, dang, sorry guys. Umm...the game will get better, but for now it seems like WAR is gonna take WoW!!! Fri Sep 05 2008 3:05PM Report
unknown writes: This guy (Erling Ellingson) has no more creditability, his image is shot; a wise business decision would be to change the AoC PR. No one is going to believe what this guy has to say. Fri Sep 05 2008 3:26PM Report
Paragus1 writes: It will be very interesting to see how the number of subs looks in about 2 months from now. AoC players will have an alternative MMO to consider in a week or 2. I am not buying that 400k number. Even if you accept that, it means at least half of the players have quit in 2-3 months. There is no way to put a happy face on that. They know if word got out about the numbers of subs nobody would buy it. Again, good interview Jon. You don't softball these guys, and thousands of former customers appreciate it. Fri Sep 05 2008 3:41PM Report
Evelknievel writes: I hope AoC survives. Its a damn good game, it just needs some TLC really quick. Cmon FC lets get your shit together on this game or sell it off to a company that can deliver the goods! Fri Sep 05 2008 4:43PM Report
Vesavius writes: Content thins out at 55...? Man, it aint too thick from 20-55 either... Fri Sep 05 2008 4:52PM Report
xentex writes: Almost every single server is completely dead in population. Please ask him when..., not if..., they will do server mergers. If is not an option. There is noone on the servers left to fight. Second the mergers must allow for the transferring svr to move their battlekeep accross to the new server. It is simply not an option to expect ppl who have broken their backs to get their city to full tier 3 to just give it up and reroll. Do not go easy on him. Force him to acknowledge that he must implement server transfers and he must make it his number one priority now. Fri Sep 05 2008 4:58PM Report
spaz1337 writes: Erling Ellingson is Goldberg from the mighty ducks!!!!!!!!!! Fri Sep 05 2008 5:12PM Report
cosimusta writes: Lie number 581,672:"we have over 400,000 active players." They don't have 400,000 active players. That was their subscriber number, but likely isn't now. hats off to Daedren for that tid bit. Fri Sep 05 2008 5:48PM Report
cmann40 writes: anyone who thinks that aoc is still a good game needs to have their heads examined. funcum continues to lie to its players and is far from fixing this game im sure. Im hoping war will be better at least i know that they are not even attempting to put in directx10 seeing most people are even using it yet Fri Sep 05 2008 5:57PM Report
Balthaazar1 writes: Who would ever believe a damn thing he says? I can count maybe ten lies right off the top of my head in this. Fri Sep 05 2008 7:18PM Report
Zorvan writes: Jon, I commend you for keeping a straight face the whole time Erling was spouting his BS. I couldn't have done it. In fact, when he says stupid shit like they're fixing the memory leaks because of feedback, and not because there's memory leaks, I'd have busted out laughing. Or when he called drunken brawling a "new feature" instead of an old one that was never put in. Or when he verified that the new people that have been hired have been hired for the expansion. Etc., etc., etc. Fri Sep 05 2008 7:26PM Report
nightwing70 writes: War is coming. Fri Sep 05 2008 7:41PM Report
bzmonster writes: After the company dies or he gets fired he will have a bright future as a used car salesman. Fri Sep 05 2008 8:12PM Report
LoboMau writes: He seems so desesperate! Its pathetic really... Fri Sep 05 2008 8:21PM Report
-Zeno- writes: They were saying all of this a month ago. Looks like they are going nowhere fast. Fri Sep 05 2008 8:57PM Report
mark90_2k2 writes: I stopped playing AoC after my free month expired! Wouldn't pay subscription for that! As soon as I got my free pre-order war mammoth at level 40... i couldnt see any need to keep playing... i was bored by it! So back to beloved EQ2!!! Fri Sep 05 2008 9:02PM Report
Unfinished writes: The closed beta testers told FC all of the issues, unanimously declared the game wasn't ready for launch, they launched anyway, and now FC claims to be tailoring the game to this 'new' feedback. Pretending to be 'comming clean' without actually being honest. Dunno why they think their BS is invisible. Fri Sep 05 2008 9:16PM Report
kelstar writes: Big business. Funcom wanted the returns on investment and decided to launch. The decision was probably made by some suit who has no clue about the MMO market. He thought short term. Get some cash off retail and a few months subscriptions rather than going for the medium to long run. In this day and age, players won't tolerate that kind of strategy for too long. With WAR coming out, AoC will probably take a serious hit. It's a shame, there's a lot I love about the game, but I'm just afraid it might be too little too late. Wait and see. As for Erling, give the guy a break, he's doing his job of Product Manager. He isn't an ice cream truck driver. He's there to paint a great picture about the state of the game, the decision-making process and the future. "We understand, we're sorry, we're staffing up for the expansion, the priorities list, we read all (or almost all) player feedback..." I think the guy is good at what he does. Fri Sep 05 2008 10:28PM Report
arctarus writes: Thank you Jon for the great interview. If FC is really wanting to get their priorities right than they should focus ALL of their man power on the current game, and not on the x-pac and ANOTHER MMO!!! Fri Sep 05 2008 11:34PM Report
Hardas writes: lol hahahah muhahaha by the time they are ready for expansion they will have like 2 subcriptions left Sat Sep 06 2008 1:03AM Report
SBE1 writes: Still amazed this guy thinks PvP was a "minor" issue. I bet they are down to 100,000 or less in active (non-cancelled) subscriptions now. No wonder they will say anything to keep players. Sat Sep 06 2008 1:33AM Report
mcharj11 writes: Still amazed that some people think he said that PvP was minor issue. What he actually said was that he though PvP experience (XP) wasn't a main feature. I'm not a big fan of Funcom but i can't stand it when people are ripping into a guy for something he didn't even say... Sat Sep 06 2008 2:29AM Report
Ronmel writes: Nice, cant wait for these updates. The game rocks, but still need some fixes and updates. Sat Sep 06 2008 4:07AM Report
CujoSWAoA writes: Its a great game built on a great foundation. Its got a bright future ahead of itself and a very hard working development team. Age of Conan's only getting better. I just feel bad for people like Erling here who has to deal with just about everyone... beneath... this post, clueless fools that they are. Sat Sep 06 2008 4:30AM Report
knacck writes: the only reason they say they have 400,000 is because most people brought the 3 or 6 month sub. it is sad would of been a great game if they only listen to all the beta testers. it you notice they are talking about patching PvP in when war comes out so again to me they are useing us again to try and fill their ranks. Sat Sep 06 2008 6:21AM Report
Reborn17 writes: I've said it before and I'll say it again, guys like Cujo must work for F.E.C.E.S. (Funcom Entertainment Consumer Espionage Services). Double agents faking a forum post near you,"Extended Pay to Beta FTW!". For shame, Funcom! Sat Sep 06 2008 6:29AM Report
mindw0rk writes: Good questions again and professional answers. Too bad only a miracle can save AoC after WAR/WoTLK release. Sat Sep 06 2008 7:37AM Report
Soldarith writes: Really good interview questions; got right down to the questions the MMO community is asking. The answers, on the other hand, were total marketing fluff and no substance. Expect to release an expansion in 2009? WOW. This tells A LOT about their development process and testing mentality. If it should only take you a year to release a brand new expansion, it scares the hell out of me. I wouldn't buy an MMO title that can crank out an expansion in a year and expect it to be fully tested, tuned, created, etc. Sat Sep 06 2008 12:15PM Report
Soldarith writes: Really good interview questions; got right down to the questions the MMO community is asking. The answers, on the other hand, were total marketing fluff and no substance. Expect to release an expansion in 2009? WOW. This tells A LOT about their development process and testing mentality. If it should only take you a year to release a brand new expansion, it scares the hell out of me. I wouldn't buy an MMO title that can crank out an expansion in a year and expect it to be fully tested, tuned, created, etc. Sat Sep 06 2008 12:16PM Report
Jupsto writes: very soon TM Sat Sep 06 2008 3:30PM Report
Talemire writes: Very good interview skills, especially confirming that AoC did not have 10mil. Sat Sep 06 2008 10:51PM Report
ssjdagas writes: I don't understand how some people can call the game dead. EVE Online has about 200k active players after five years, it has been slowly increasing ever since the game launched over five years ago and there's no signs at all that the game is dying, on the contrary it is getting bigger and better for every year. There are a lot of MMORPG's out there that are making profit even though they are not anywhere near as successful as WoW. Sun Sep 07 2008 4:35AM Report
Mitara writes: Its amazing that there are STILL people out there who are so completely clueless that they think Warhammer is going to be any good.. Amazing! No, im serious... Warhammer... uh, its going to rock so much, there will be no errors mistakes or even expansion packs coming out 2 years after launch. Please... Sun Sep 07 2008 8:25AM Report
Mitara writes: PVP. I think EE is referring to many of the polls and market surveys that shows only about 30% of players are actually putting PvP as the top priority for playing an MMO. They are no doubt the players that shouts the most (just look at the below), but they are not the majority of players. Sun Sep 07 2008 10:57AM Report
krieblood writes: Same crap said in the first interview done like 1 month ago your full of crap. This is marked FailCom Sun Sep 07 2008 1:35PM Report
antaras writes: conan as it is now is a worth game experience until u reach top lvl, when u get to 80 there is nothing to do, and the combat they some much hyped is boring, i´m not playing more conan until the game gets decent Sun Sep 07 2008 2:32PM Report
Soupgoblin writes: Damnit! I broke my headset when I heard EE tell us that customer service is important to Funcom!! There is barely any communication from the devs on the US forums, very rarely do the community managers and mods talk to the community (other than to ban, close and delete posts). The players are getting tired of all the silence, and the ignoring of customers that Funcom is well known for (AO anyone?). It would be nice if Funcom could stop the lying and actually learn how to communicate with it's players (customers), because a company that provides a service and also ignores their customers will fail. Sun Sep 07 2008 7:46PM Report
dunesw64 writes: With all the positive buzz Warhammer Online's been getting, and the fact that there's actually content that goes beyond level 20 (ahem, AoC), the game has failed. WAR and Lich King are too promising then the golden turd AoC is. Sorry Funcom, fun gameplay > graphics. Mythic and Blizzard has taught you that. Sun Sep 07 2008 9:41PM Report
BogSvarog writes: Thanks to MMORPG.COM for stepping up in the scene and getting these interviews. People, if you do not have evidence, then your propositions or opinions do not matter. In fact, they are mere fantasies. Mon Sep 08 2008 7:45AM Report
Bloodwire writes: The feeling I get, it's kinda when the US were invading Iraq and you had that spokesman saying 'There are no US troops here' repeatedly. He knew he was lying, we knew he was lying, but he kept at it. Mon Sep 08 2008 9:24AM Report
DthRevan writes: LOL they love using the number 'SEVEN' Mon Sep 08 2008 10:37AM Report
antaras writes: he cant say a phrase without getting nervous hes lying he know the game is a failure and will never make it to compete with WoW, WaR? from what i saw its rubbish Mon Sep 08 2008 1:22PM Report
tfwarlord writes: People, a mmo with 200k+ subs makes profit (cant remember where i read that but i did somewhere), so it is not a failure.. It is not a gigantic success, but not a failure either.. Wed Sep 10 2008 5:55PM Report
rufanstein writes: Remeber boy's and girls mmorpg's are buyer beware,there like used cars sometimes you get a good buy but more often then not theres something wrong with it.This game is definatly a lemon.So just like a used car I test drive it.There was no free trial for this game so i waited,and after seeing all this mess I saved 50$ for the game ,monthly subs and a whole lotta frustration it seems.Case in point no free trial,you dont get my money. Thu Sep 11 2008 6:43AM Report
clash83 writes: After carefully reading all the above comments, I have reached the conclusion that some people are either blizzard employees or they don't know what they are talking about. Admit just like seeing dwarves, elves and all that bright colours and childish armor sets. No problem with simply represents your age. So, after all these fantastic arguments like "conan bad, warcraft good" can anyone explain to me WHY the HECK do you believe that WoW is "deeper"? Because of the click 'n' killing of about a hundred variations of a pig? Because of the RP feeling it provides? (here goes a big laugh). AoC is a great game...good new pvp ideas combined with great content. 10 times a better Role-playing game than WoW, in spite of its annoying problems. So....all you...NooBies xD...simply return to WoW and stop bothering us. Thu Sep 11 2008 4:53PM Report
Nhoj1983 writes: Well... I hear a HUGE amount of bad comments about this game. I've played since launch and I have to say this. I compare every mmo to this one. Yes I play others. Mainly Warhammer. Though that game is awsome and very impressive(been in beta quite some time) it still doesn't beat AoC at least in the combat system and graphics.(which are important) Still as it is it is extremely flawed. I still have faith things will even out. I havn't felt betrayed at all by these things. So many people are mad and I have to say well... doesn't this happen every release? This game tried somthing new. I give huge kudos to you Erling and the rest of funcom for that. The game does need help. For me? I need more equipment and areas. Not end game equipment middle of the road equipment. Stuff that makes me think mmhmm! I look awsome. I want more areas and odd things to do. I want role play content. Housing perhaps. I want a way so as to allow me an average player to be able to raid keeps without having to join an elite guild. Make the pvp worth it somehow. Perhaps a mercenary system? Give mounted combat a real use past astetics. I should be able to run someone down with a mount who's un protected and in the open. Last but not least. Increase leveling difficulty by large amounts. More levels? hero classes? These are just some suggestions. I realize this game is still not finished and definitely expect good things in the future. It would give me great pleasure to see AoC thrive and grow. In my opinion it's the only game out at the moment brave enough to depart from the WoW syndrome. So keep up the good work and those who look at this and go "is it that bad?" No it's not. It's great fun but I'd wait for a few more months for the content to be fleshed out before buying. Unless your like me and don't mind putting cash towards somthing worth while that will very likely become great given time. Fri Sep 12 2008 3:09AM Report
Shark2119 writes: Its amazing how people like to have a negative outlook on AoC instead of a positive one. I've played the game since it came out and its very fun with a huge capability/potential to grow. Yeah there are issues and things may have not been approached appropriately for this games launch, but, lets move on and stop whining about it. If you don't like the game move on. Go to warhammer or go back to wow. I must say though in my opinion content MAY be there for WARHAMMER, but eventually because graphics and gameplay i.e. combat are not there,(which "combat" is a large portion of all mmos oriented in warfare)the game will fall short. I was thinking of trying WAR but as good as content may be I just can't go to a boring combat system and barely acceptable graphics. AoC has graphics and combat, now lets work on more content/issues and just expand the game Funcom. .....I'm just thinking all those complainers out there have nothing else to go to so they stick around AoC forums because they believe the game is gonna go somewhere. There like a child who wants candy but the parent says no,no,no,no but finally gives in and gives the child candy. The child just becomes overwhelmed in joy and stops complaining..... Fri Sep 12 2008 8:23PM Report
Apansbrorsa writes: Wall of text video-style :D The Secret World ftw Sat Sep 13 2008 4:20PM Report
vbabic writes: Good interviews Sun Sep 14 2008 3:32AM Report
Eldwynn writes: HAHAHAHAHAH Mythic has reported their server numbers for EVER. Even now that DAOC is practically dead, they still report numbers. Lame Sun Sep 14 2008 11:16PM Report
rdrpappy writes: Been playing since beta, and I will continue to do so as long as they continue to improve it. AoC is the best "Roleplaying" envirnment I have been in since early SWG. Wed Sep 17 2008 10:57AM Report
dunesw64 writes: It's amazing how people don't have a positive outlook on the game? The lead designer and a founder of Funcom just left the company. The game is garbage, and even Funcom realizes this. Thu Sep 18 2008 1:57AM Report
Darkhosis writes: He won't set a date for when the game will contain all its promised features because there never will be a date. They'd have to re-code that POS game from scratch to even get it up to Free Asian MMORPG standards. Funcon, putting the FU in Fun since 2000. Games tanked. People no longer care about AOC and are tired of it wasting space on MMORPG's front page. Tue Sep 23 2008 2:15PM Report