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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

Open Beta. Check it out

Posted by Athelan Wednesday April 23 2008 at 3:00PM
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Check out this email I just got!


Hi, the first OPen beta keys will start dripping out soon. Can you please post the following message to go live ASAP? The keys start to roll in 15 minutes so please be quick!!!!!

Unless the heavens fall and cruel Hyborian gods says otherwise, the first batch of Open Beta keys will go out in a few hours! That is right, your first chance to get the coveted Beta spots are soon here, and at first 5000 lucky winners wil be chosen. As soon as you get a key you will be able to download of the game, but please be aware that the keys are given out in waves. This is done is to secure optimal download speeds for the client. Clocking in at almost 13 Gigs, it's a healthy size for any game! The good folks at Fileplanet knows through experience how to handle such downloads in an optimal way, and this means that the keys and downloads will go out in batches. As soon as the first batch of 5000 calms down, the second wave will be initiated, and so forth and so on, until all the 50.000 keys are out. So, if you want a spot in the beta and are not lucky first time around, please make sure to check your mail and the Conan Fileplanet minisite from time to time.

Should you be able to get hold of a key, please be aware that you SHOULD choose the download location which is the closest to you (if on the west coast of USA choose a west coast location etc.). If you start to download on your "first and best" choice, and get a slower than anticipated speed, you should know that cancelling the download means you will be only bumped back in the queue. So, please make sure to check this thoroughly prior to inititing download.

Oh, in conjunction with Fileplanet and IGN we also have some cool prizes and whatnot for you all. More info to come soon!

We wish all of you the best of luck in getting hold of a key, and we hope to see you in Hyboria very soon.


grimfall writes:

I've been wondering.  How can you have a limited number of 'Open Beta' spots?

What this really is: Closed beta where we're too lazy to troll through our applicants and handle the downloads/keys ourselves.

Open Beta means 'open' not 10K players or 25K players or even 50K players, it means anyone who wants to play can play.

I hope that those of you who sign up at that other site and get the access enjoy your time.

Does this mean the NDA has been lifted on Beta?  That would be  another aspect of being 'open'.

Wed Apr 23 2008 3:13PM Report
Athelan writes:

It seems pretty simple to me how you can limit your Open Beta spots. It is open as in its anyone's fair shot to get in not requiring the prior Beta application. These days however you cannot go completely open as there is not going to be unlimited bandwidth and server hardware to support that.

Wed Apr 23 2008 3:44PM Report
Kyleran writes:

Actually, open beta does not mean "wide open beta", 50K is considered a pretty healthy number of players, and is open enough to be objective. 

Wed Apr 23 2008 3:48PM Report
Kremlik writes:

I can see why open betas are now like this main reason they don't want the chat channels filled with hate spam, second is that they don't really want the secondary market infecting the game already..

Wed Apr 23 2008 3:58PM Report
Bainer writes:

It appears to be "open beta for Fileplanet subscribers". Someone correct me if I'm wrong

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:20PM Report
MymlochDC writes: So... to even have a CHANCE to be SELECTED for the "not so" Open (i.e. Closed) Beta, you have to be a paying subscriber to FilePlanet? That's freakin awesome. How about that capitalism, folks? Wed Apr 23 2008 4:23PM Report
synia writes:

You have to be a paying subscriber? For "open" beta? That's just ridiculous. No wait, it's not even for "open" beta - it's for a CHANCE at "open" beta. Give me a break. Do I even want to buy the game at all to support a company that's so money-grubbing? Just fail.

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:45PM Report
BodyART writes:

Open beta has meant, and still means, you do not have to fill out an application that is reviewed by the dev team or their appointed proxies, and be at the whim of their decision whether or not to allow you in.  Open means you just need to be in the right place at the right time, under the right conditions.  So what if you need to be a file planet subscriber.  You get a pretty good deal for the yearly founder membership, including the games you can get free with hitpoints and the magazines.  I personally do a lot of DLing through FP to begin with, and not waiting a half hour to start a DL is advantageous enough. 

at least now with Comrade, you have a fighting chance of getting a key. when EQII went open through FP in 2004, 10k keys were released at a time and all were gone within 5 minutes. 

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:50PM Report
GeneralCrazy writes:

Limited Open Beta - I think someone needs to look up oxymoron in the dictionary? I think a Close Beta Key Giveaway would be a better way of describing it.

Using Open Beta like this is just like Micro-Transaction games using Free 2 Play, it is nothing more then an Public Relations lie.

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:55PM Report
PowderBurnt writes:

I really didn't want to add to the hate but this is ridiculous. As someone who has followed the development of the game for a couple of years and applied for beta as soon as the site started taking applications, I find it insulting to find out that there is one more hoop to jump through: pay a third party for a "chance" at "open" beta. It really is disappointing. Open beta is the one chance before launch that gamers get to help test the game and decide if they want to buy it, or the special pre-order/limited edition crap.

At least be somewhat honest and call it a subscriber beta.

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:57PM Report
Oversoul87 writes:

The "instant" email alert is abit slow, not so instant. My friends who do have a subscription, and all checked the moment one of us had received an email, it was already too late.

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:58PM Report
Psiho246 writes:

Actually Funcom is not grabbing anyones money. You are paying for Fileplanet services which amongst other things means a shot at Open Beta and client download from their stable servers.

I would also add that I do not agree with this approach but its take it or leave it and release of the game is only a month away so I'm not going to whine about some open beta when I will be able to play the game itself in only a month. :D

Wed Apr 23 2008 4:59PM Report
Athelan writes:

Most fileplanet beta's split the keys between subscriber and first come first serve. How they will end up handling Age of Conan I do not know but that has been my experience as a Fileplanet user for years. Every Beta that has come out for the past 2 years almost has hit Fileplanet, and everyone that hit Fileplanet had people complain about how we must be greedy bastards trying to get people to pay for Beta, when in reality we don't make anything off of it and it, A 12gig download,x lets say 50,000 people at the low end, how much do you think the Bandwith alone would cost not counting hardware and servers to actually support the Beta itself.

It's not a chance to be selected on fileplanet, its just keys will run out.

Wed Apr 23 2008 5:00PM Report
PowderBurnt writes:

So instead of giving keys to the tech testers who already have the game installed they give keys to people who will have to spend several hours downloading and installing over 12 gigs of files? lol

Wed Apr 23 2008 5:04PM Report
MymlochDC writes: Right, Athelan, but do you not ALSO have to be a paying subscriber to FilePlanet in order to even try to get a "free" beta key before they run out? I think that's the point that is angering folks. Wed Apr 23 2008 5:52PM Report
MymlochDC writes: The game better have a free trial a few weeks in. Wed Apr 23 2008 5:54PM Report
stalker989 writes:

So give out the keys already!!

Wed Apr 23 2008 6:11PM Report
Alundre writes:

Honestly I don't understand why everyone is so bent out of shape about the open beta? It is 6 bucks for 2 weeks of playtime (if you really want to play it) and almost every game in years has had this same approach. I am sure running a beta like this is no small amount of change and as part of FP's service, they offer beta keys to their subscribers first and foremost. I guarantee if they run out of subscribers who want keys (doubtful), they are still going to give them away but us subscribers get priority which as a paying FP customer for years, I really appreciate it since it makes the subscription cost all the more valuable when things like this open up.


Is this really just because they call it an "open beta" that everyone expects it to be completely free and open for everyone? I guarantee even if they called it a closed beta, people would still be up in arms. Might be time to face the facts, regardless if we like it or not, this is how businesses work these days. The MMO space has just grown waaay too large for any company to open up servers and eat the bandwidth cost for this type of test.

Wed Apr 23 2008 6:13PM Report
PowderBurnt writes:

It still stands that there are probably more than enough people who have applied for the beta who weren't invited. These people had a genuine interest in the game and yet were passed over so that subscribers to a 3rd party website can get in before them. My argument is about fairness, not that it only costs a few bucks.

Wed Apr 23 2008 6:29PM Report
Athelan writes:

Tech Testers are more likely to be upgraded to General Beta which will continue to get more people, and is not restricted like the open beta. Considering the fact at this stage most people want a free taste of the game prior to release rather than a true testing experience anyway I think its a bit moot to argue over.

Wed Apr 23 2008 7:32PM Report
TeranHawkins writes:

Well as someone who has been REALLY anticipating this game I am disappointed by this.  No matter what you say, when it's announced "Open Beta", gamers get the instant impression that it is open to anyone who can download the client.  Heck even todays XPLAY on G4 said it was an "Open Beta" starting May 1 and made no mention of fileplanet at all!!!  Also, as someone who applied long long long ago for beta and was never selected, it's dissapointing that I cant get in to the "Open Beta" because I dont have a fileplanet subscription.  I think most of us who have put in for beta long ago like myself would have liked consideration over Joe Shmo who has a fileplanet account.

Wed Apr 23 2008 7:49PM Report
kintrik writes:

open beta doesn't  refer to unlimited access to the game until retail.

it truely just means there is no NDA. Before MMOs become popular most open betas were wide open, because they needed as many peopel to try to load the servers as possible. That isn't the case anymore. If they left it wide open, they would be forced with hundreds of thousands of people trying to log into 1 or 2 beta servers that are ment for 10-50k people max.

Wed Apr 23 2008 8:15PM Report
lorechaser writes:

I can only say "Jesus Christ, when did a beta become an entitlement?"



Wed Apr 23 2008 10:48PM Report
odragon writes:

I am disapointed at all the places that are distrubuting keys in giveaways. The access is high in demand, and being a female gamer, I would like to review and see the more completed game to see if it is a good concept to follow up upon to purchase.

But alas, the keys get grabbed up within minutes, and unless you have a T1 or fiber access, there is no chance for a typical gamer to obtain one. Even keys for registered Fileplanet subscribers is also limited.

Wed Apr 23 2008 10:51PM Report
papie writes:


Wed Apr 23 2008 11:20PM Report
Tweej writes:

Most of you dont give a crap about Beta... your after a pre-release trial... because your unsure whether you want to buy or your a kid and your not getting the game till your birthday in November... Open Beta is where the theres no NDA theres a bigger number of people allowed in and they get tests done for the release day... No use 2 million people logging on and everything crashing.... also why you dont get free trials for at least a month after release cause theres a lot of people paying to play and there stability comes before the wants and desires of the MMO trial-as-you-go crowd

Thu Apr 24 2008 12:39AM Report
Melf_Himself writes:

Beta's ONLY purpose is to give devs feedback on possible problems with the game. Those who are getting up in arms must be very very eager to give their insightful opinions to the devs?

Or could it be that what they're actually after is a FREE TRIAL before the game is released? Hmmmmm I wonder....

Beta is not a free trial, it is not for the benefit of the beta players, it is not an early start at the game, and most importantly, you are not entitled to it!

In conclusion, chillax everyone.

Thu Apr 24 2008 1:03AM Report
PowderBurnt writes:

Back atcha big man.

Thu Apr 24 2008 1:09AM Report
zymurgeist writes:

Semantics. "Open" betas are a publicity move these days for the most part. Limiting it makes both economic and advertising sense. They're just going to load the servers and hope it doesn't crash and burn to generate some more buzz. It's neither open nor a beta it's a preview for the select lucky few. Deal with it.

Thu Apr 24 2008 1:47AM Report
grimfall writes:

I don't remember subscribing to Fileplanet to play LOTRO's open beta.  Does anyone else?  I didn't have to do it for EQ or EQ2.... actually, I've never had to do it, so I am going to go ahead and say that Athlean's perception is not correct.

But it is a bit scary that a month before launch the patch servers aren't ready to distribute the game to 3,000 users at a time.  How are they going to patch 100,000 users simultaneously for go live?  I'm by no means an expert on the subject, maybe it's different technology, but it is worrying.

Thu Apr 24 2008 2:56AM Report
grimfall writes:

Oh yeah, it is also a punch to the face of those people who signed up for beta to help test the game 13 months ago (or whenever it was).  I can very easily see this 'move' as generating bad will among those players who feel like they've been 'supporting' the game.

If Funcom had thought about it, they would have sent the keys to those people and said 'We're not going to need you for our standard beta process, but thanks for the offer and if you want to try beta go to file planet for download. Please enjoy the game and report and bugs that you find.'

Funny now just a little thought can give you the same end result, without alienating potential players.

Thu Apr 24 2008 3:02AM Report
Daedren writes:

Hi Athelan,

First, thanks for reading my blog, and commenting on my Conan posts. Always good to see one of the team around taking a vested interested.

On the subject of this beta business, I have to say I'm a bit disappointed in the way  Age of Conan has handled it.

They are the first MMO, to my knowledge, that has gone as far as capitalizing directly off Beta Testing. You are effectively charging people for early access to your game, and they are *paying* to help you out, as a company, with a QA process.

I know this probably wasn't your decision. This has corporate asshattery written all over it. Beta testing has, of course, becoming a marketing tool of late in the MMO scene.

As a player, I have to say that this is a step in the wrong direction. You're really testing the limits of a player / company relationship by doing this.

As a developer, I understand the need for Beta Testing and a public interest in it. Remember that these Beta Testers - however you get them into the Beta - are going to have a huge impact on how well the game does in the first few months. 50,000 people, many who will only have went and got a shitty Fileplanet subscription to try and get into the Beta for some reason - are going to feel a bit cheated when they realize the *work* that comes with being a Beta tester.

Anyway, just my thoughts on the subject. I'll be doing an editorial on this phenomenon in the near future, hope you have time to catch it.

Thu Apr 24 2008 3:17AM Report
Daedren writes:

Hi Athelan,

First, thanks for reading my blog, and commenting on my Conan posts. Always good to see one of the team around taking a vested interested.

On the subject of this beta business, I have to say I'm a bit disappointed in the way  Age of Conan has handled it.

They are the first MMO, to my knowledge, that has gone as far as capitalizing directly off Beta Testing. You are effectively charging people for early access to your game, and they are *paying* to help you out, as a company, with a QA process.

I know this probably wasn't your decision. This has corporate asshattery written all over it. Beta testing has, of course, becoming a marketing tool of late in the MMO scene.

As a player, I have to say that this is a step in the wrong direction. You're really testing the limits of a player / company relationship by doing this.

As a developer, I understand the need for Beta Testing and a public interest in it. Remember that these Beta Testers - however you get them into the Beta - are going to have a huge impact on how well the game does in the first few months. 50,000 people, many who will only have went and got a shitty Fileplanet subscription to try and get into the Beta for some reason - are going to feel a bit cheated when they realize the *work* that comes with being a Beta tester.

Anyway, just my thoughts on the subject. I'll be doing an editorial on this phenomenon in the near future, hope you have time to catch it.

Thu Apr 24 2008 3:19AM Report
Daedren writes:

Double post, one blue to boot! Sorry about that.

@grimfall: I agree entirely that the past loyal beta testers should have first priority. The AoC "stress testing" was basically creating a character and then waiting for the servers to crash. It took a LOT of time to download the client, install everything, get stuff working, and then log on and effectively do nothing, just to help them out.

Our reward? Hi, go pay for an asinine subscription that you don't need to have a chance to actually play the game a little.

Anyway, /rant off. ;)

Thu Apr 24 2008 3:21AM Report
thamighty213 writes:

I just cant believe your still treating the tech test beta guys like crap, a lot of these guys put in there time there rescources to help funcom out in breaking system's which we did with such success that I and many others got no further than character creation and for them to not get moved to open beta in favour of a pay to play beta through fileplanet isnt right in my eyes.

Thu Apr 24 2008 5:26AM Report
thamighty213 writes:

Athelan the beta was succesfully distibuted via torrent why didnt funcom just continue this practice then this bypasses the vast majority of the bandwith issues once the first few hundred seeders are up. I was very impressed to hear that and i thought at last a game developer is making the most of one of the greatest methods of distibution of files in a legitimate way and hopefully take away a lot of the bad press torrent's get.  But as usual beta's go to the pay to play way I in no way believe FC does not recieve some form of payment or kick back's from subscribtion's made on the day the beta launches on FP.

Thu Apr 24 2008 5:33AM Report
Digna writes:

I never saw any emails even after signing up for notifications. After I came here and saw this article, I checked the website and sure enough, the 1st 2 batches  of keys supposedly went out. Highly disappointing. No schedule, no idea of time frames and no notifications. I use FP regularly so I have a sub with them and the AoC Beta is a 'cookie'. I've never really had an issue with them before but this is disheartening.

Thu Apr 24 2008 6:06AM Report
chillsan writes:

Out of past personal experience with multiple betas I am skipping the beta, just because characters get deleted at the end of it and 4/5 th of the friends you make don't end up staying or buying anyway. My time is valuable, but I like what Funcom has done as per this last weekend. I'll wait for retail and the real deal then I'll get it for sure. Goodluck to all.

Thu Apr 24 2008 6:12AM Report
Athelan writes:

Daedren, I can't say anything that is going to dissuade those who are stubborn about their opinions, just like yours.


You seem to be confusing your arguement about the fee for the head start download and the Beta. IGN is hosting the Open Beta for us, this offloads Funcom from having to pay for all the bandwidth etc, but we are not charging anyone anything. How IGN is handling that is THEIR business not ours once we made the agreement to host it through them. And as far as the fee for the headstart as I said before it is a small fee to cover the digital download of the client early, thats it, no profit margin, just covering cost.

Thu Apr 24 2008 10:43AM Report
fansede writes:

Does this mean If I preordered AoC, and I got a beta key, do i still need to pay for a $5 head start fee?

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:04AM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

Does anyone remember what WoW's online distribution for trial/beta and marketing strategy was before they launched?  Did it also involve paying to be given a beta key?

I really don't remember, was so long ago, but whatever Blizzard did, they started their launch good, would that entail that other developers follow Blizzard's strategy on marketing and patron relations and such, maybe, maybe not, what do you think? =)

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:12AM Report
zergwatch writes:

Please don't pull a brad.    This whole launch is starting to smell a bit braddy.    Athelan, your last post does nothing but shift blame to Fileplanet, but using FilePlanet was an agreement Funcom entered into, so you can't just say "Oh I dunno wtf they do over there, not us".

 Your company (whether its via Funcom or your business partners it comes down to funcom) is nickel and diming users and MMORPG users are pretty finicky people who like to bitch and moan,so its best to not give them things to bitch and moan about.

first, you have to pay $5 for early access

you had 1,000,000 people fill out BS beta apps only to toss them and say "ya know what, let em pay Fileplanet to worry about that".

Now you  tell everyone you have to pay to play open beta

Ok. let me rephrase that.  You don't have to pay to play open beta (which is essentially just a pay to play beta).. you now have to pay Fileplanet to have a chance of getting a beta key..  but only ifyou sit at your computer all day clicking refresh.

It's just a big ol' assfucking of your fans, IMO.


Thu Apr 24 2008 11:14AM Report
zergwatch writes:

Woops, hit the wrong key.  Anyway..  On top of all these new and hidden fees and hoops people are being made to jump through, you better have the killer mmorpg because the more you stir up the hornet's nest, the more you will get stung.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:15AM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

I already pre-ordered three standard editions with mount at Gamestop, with these issues on hand, it's quite discouraging. 

Been registered for Beta so many months ago, but I wasn't lucky enough to be chosen. I would like to test the game first and help with the tweaking before I actually push through with purchasing.  Three accounts isn't exactly cheap, considering I live in the Asia, and I had to ask a relative to send the games. 

I'm quite unaccustomed to paying for Beta, we test the game, so developers can tweak it further so it will be near polished at launch, ummm...if anyone's going to be paid, wouldn't it be the beta testers? lol, just using logic, don't take it seriously (wink).

Would there be a truly open beta nefore launch? Also possibly, a separate trial for those who just want to try the tutorial, or part of the single player scenario?

Decisions, decisions, hmmmmm.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:38AM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

Oh yes, with regard to the Beta testing I mentioned, I didn't pay to Beta test, City of Heroes, Guild Wars, or Everquest 2.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:41AM Report
soulwynd writes:

My only thought about all this is; 13Gb? What the fuck is wrong with you developers. This way I might stick to rogue-likes to another year.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:56AM Report
synia writes:

Hmm, yeah, didn't pay at all to play the truly-open betas of LotrO, Vanguard, EQII. And I have to agree with above posters - tech beta people deserve these keys. I'm not one of them but I know the work that goes in - they deserve to at least have easier testing for the last month. And for those of us that have been waiting for a beta key for over a year - yep, just a slap in the face. So much for caring about veterans and people who support the community. I guess there's more value in being a subscriber to FilePlanet than actually giving a crap about this game since the beginning.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:59AM Report
tkobo writes:

Far too funny.

But personally i dont really see the big change here.In a few months you'll be paying for a "beta" product called a "retail" product anyway.

All funcom has really done here, is admit that they are gonna make you PAY to play their beta.

No real difference between paying to beta now, and doing the same after "retail" .

If anything,one might even say this is a very small step for Funcom towards honesty.

Again, FAR TOO funny.

Thu Apr 24 2008 2:48PM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

You mean, "a chance to play beta", there is a difference with the retail subscription, because you are not assured of getting a beta key even if you subscribe to Fileplanet, in retail, you are assured to play.

Thu Apr 24 2008 2:57PM Report
Player_420 writes:

My comment after reading all that crazy stuff....

Just keep in mind Athelan that at some point the company might wanna consider letting it be 100% open for anyone to sign up, D/L and play.

The only reason for this is because your games gunna be rly popular at launch, and it might be good to experiance the INSANE mass amounts of people all logging on.

I have done so much beta testing, jsut thought I'de give my 2 cents


Thu Apr 24 2008 3:18PM Report
LuckyR writes:

Why oh why...Funcom had a chance to make some good coin here. Instead of letting FP make a few million dollars, Funcom could have charged $5-$10 for beta and put money back into the game. I would not have had a problem paying to Funcom, but I will NOT give 1 red cent to a 3rd party that I do not use and will never use. 50,000 keys given away, + what? Around another 200,000 that tried to get into beta? FP made some good money and considering that site sponsers paid for the bandwidth, cheers to FP for stealing a crap load of cash. To bad Funcom was too stupid to do it. I had been at AOC site since 2006 and yes I am pissed that they took my beta app. and tossed it away. I have now cancelled my pre-order and think everyone else should do the same just to teach the NEXT company to not be so shameful with their fans. SHAME SHAME Funcom!

Thu Apr 24 2008 4:39PM Report
Kataal writes:

the idea that there are only 50k spots doesn't bother me at all, I can understand it completely. The thing that bothers me more than ANYTHING, is that you have to be a fileplanet subscriber to play, this means that fileplanet is paying funcom a cut to make it subscriber only. What it basically means is, you're paying for beta. this is RIDICULOUS. Limiting beta is one thing, and I can even understand limiting it to only preorder customers, but making you pay a monthly fee to a site in order to help TEST the game is utter trash, and it is unacceptable.

Thu Apr 24 2008 5:32PM Report
Raston writes:

it doesn't matter to me if it is a 7.99 fee or 1.00 fee, I refuse to pay Failplanet or IGN one penny for ANYTHING

Thu Apr 24 2008 6:23PM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

Take note, that even if you pay Fileplanet for a chance to get into the Beta, you are still not assured of getting a beta key, if you don't; well, too bad, you paid for nothing...almost nothing, you get a subscription to something you don't really use. Heh.

I would pay for Beta, $5 isn't all that much,I used to play two $15 a month MMOs at the same time, if the game's good, it's ok to to pay...but I "WILL NOT" pay for something I'm not certain I will receive.  That would be gambling, apparently Funcom supports this, hmmmm?

Funcom cannot put the blame on Fileplanet regarding the subscription requirement, this is a business deal with contract signing, that means "Funcom was aware of all the facts" before they pushed through.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:22PM Report
nephilim2051 writes:


I like your idea, limiting the Beta to pre-order clients, and don't forget the Beta applicants from months ago at the Age of Conan site.  I have 3 retail box pre-orders at Gamestop, I'm not so sure now if I'll cancel and wait for Warhammer Online.

Thu Apr 24 2008 11:25PM Report
nivekt7 writes:


Fri Apr 25 2008 2:29AM Report
Qayne writes:

lol, cancelling preorders because you don't like fileplanet. That's healthy

Fri Apr 25 2008 3:35AM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

Cancel pre-orders because I'm not sure if the game is really worth it, Funcom not being able to handle in maintaining the game in the long run.  They can't even do trials and beta, and needed a third party company to handle the distribution for them at a less than favorable contractual agreement, favoring less the fans and the people who supported them since the game was announced.

My post required some more depth of thought, obviously, you didn't have it.

Fri Apr 25 2008 5:51AM Report
nephilim2051 writes:

On an added note, did I say I DIDN'T like Fileplanet?  Nope, none of my posts contained such a notion.  What I didn't like, was how Funcom dealt with the beta key distribution agreement with Filaplanet, and how unfairly the long time supporters of the game who signed up for beta so many months or years ago was put aside, in favor of paying Fileplanet you get it now?

Fri Apr 25 2008 5:58AM Report
Cillij writes:

Wow fan. Geting tyerd off it. and i will maby start playing Aoc just want to try it like a demo. + big fan off mmo games

Fri Apr 25 2008 6:24AM Report
arnis writes:


Fri Apr 25 2008 6:49AM Report
Daedren writes:


Thanks for the reply. I know Funcom isn't charging for the beta, Fileplanet is. It's this move that's the bad move.

Like many posters said, distributing via Torrent saves on bandwidth.

Fileplanet is only offering AoC beta keys to paid subscribers. What the hell is that about? Are you telling me FunCom is getting *no* proceeds on this? Even if they aren't, give the beta keys out yourself! We have many, many people, like myself, who beta stress tested AoC - spent time, lots of time, to effectively do nothing in the game. We wanted to help?

The *least* you could have done for this loyal testers is give them a beta key. Hell, I'd even host the beta client on my server grid, I have about 10 TeraBytes of bandwidth to use.

Instead, we're left with going and dropping 15$ US on a crappy subscription that we won't even use. How many people went and paid Fileplanet, just for AOC beta access? I'd bet a lot. Like 10,000 a lot. Congrats, you just gave Fileplanet 150,000 USD for bandwidth.

There are so many better ways for this to have been handled. Torrents. Fansites. I know between myself and some other bloggers, along with AOC fansites, you'd have more bandwidth than you knew what to do with.

Instead, we're left with a poor decision that makes FunCom and AoC lose credibility. While it might have been good intended (thought I doubt it) -- you know have an "Open Beta" where people have to pay 15 USD to another company not associated with FunCom.

Whoever made this decision should be fired. Hire me.


Fri Apr 25 2008 6:55AM Report
Daedren writes:

@LuckyR, Raston:

I agree completely. Fileplanet is evil. Don't let others dissuade you: this was a bad decision.

Fri Apr 25 2008 6:57AM Report
Daedren writes:

Well, I've done it. Sorry for any bad publicity here, Athelan. It might end up like a Chappelle's "When Keeping it Real Goes Wrong" ... but who knows. ;)

Fri Apr 25 2008 7:45AM Report
Polyformist writes:

Well its open now.  So I don't feel like I should be hiding in the back ground.   I hope everyone has fun with this game.  After playing it a few times over the last few months, I can't get over allot of what has been said vrs what is in game.

The game has some unique features, and the combat at first sounded incredibly cool,  however in the end not a style I enjoy.  I hope the wrest of you enjoy it more so.

As far as game features,  Allot was promised,  and unless a huge patch is put forth before release (unlike the constant 4gig+ weekly patches) the game will release in much that same condition as "Vanguard" only missing allot more to be honest.

I would not skip the oportunity to check the game out if I were you, before it costs you.  You may find that the $50 purchase price (estimate) will be  waste of money.

Fri Apr 25 2008 12:09PM Report
Joshyray writes:

It makes me happy to see the posts about people not going to get the game. Like we want you care bare 3 year olds in the game with us anyway. Your the people that ruin guilds over loot drops couase someone eles gets it. Go get a chick flick, some ice cream and have a pity party for yourself.

Fri Apr 25 2008 1:21PM Report
Skandalon writes:

I already had a subscription to Fileplanet and just upgraded to Founder's Club because of the extras that I would receive for the same price.  Fileplanet was faster than Blizzard's servers for grabbing WOW patches.  That's why I had joined in the first place. 

This isn't an open beta like I've seen in the past.  You have a level cap at 13.  WOW's open beta wasn't that limited.  The code here is separate from the code that went gold.  I am guessing this is just to stress test the servers before all hell breaks loose in May.

If you think the complaints and whining are bad now, imagine not being able to log on on launch day for several hours or even days.

Fri Apr 25 2008 4:24PM Report
Tastywheat1 writes:

I have joined File Planet for a month to test the game. It cost me all of $7.95 and I'm now all set to go come May first. Its not a lot of money and I want to see more of the game before release, more then I wanted to keep $7.95. However, one way I think this whole thing could have been avoided would be to let the preorder costumers have the 3 day early access without the $5.00 charge. I think this would have healed a lot of this anger and hate. Plus it would give a early look at the game at a time when it really matters because you will now get to keep your toons come release day. The file Planet peeps  are all getting wiped at the end of that Beta. My guess would be that some of the employees at FunCom  saw the shit storm this whole thing would cause, but like any business its the high ups who make the decisions and they are usually the same people who are out of touch with the masses. So in conclusion that is my take on this whole matter. I am greatly looking forward to AOC and FunCom has made some great games so I'm in for the long hall. I wish you all Peace and Happiness.

Sat Apr 26 2008 12:48AM Report
eric_w66 writes:

Just a FYI, Torrents aren't that great of solution. See WoW's patching. They don't work well for the majority of people, and of course, there are the security risks.

Sat Apr 26 2008 12:31PM Report
mintor writes:

tell have pay $15.95  too fileplanet  get a chance at beta

Sun Apr 27 2008 3:45AM Report
Spirer writes:

Just wanted to say: Bad idea, don't piss people off before launch.

Also bad to shift blame to fileplanet, this is your game, you need to worry about every tiny detail.

Sun Apr 27 2008 6:07AM Report
ADOLFzgz writes:


Sun Apr 27 2008 7:39AM Report
T4NKofF34R writes:

I've signed up to win many a beta key and have never gotten one.  If I do get this one, I hope it's actually worth signing up for it. With all the BS downtime on new servers and games who have to limit the keys distributed just to decrease lag is LAME. This only shows that if everyone got a key, the servers would be slow and almost useless w/o a mad gaming comp. Limiting the number of users who sign up to beta test not only shows me that I can see complications of lag beginning from day one, but also shows me that until you all are "comfortable" to allow more people, my gameplay experience may drivel down just b/c of this.  -The Tank o' PHEAR

Sun Apr 27 2008 12:15PM Report
icemanXxX writes:

Yeah I agree...stop being if gas prices were`nt bad we get nickle and dimed for bandwidth,early access....stop the bullshit...we get enough of that crap once the game launches(downtime,patches,ect,ect,ECT)

Sun Apr 27 2008 12:17PM Report
eragon77151 writes:

ok am I being extremely naive or is everyone else failing to read the agreement for the contest? I could have sworn that I saw, on the page were we entered this "drawing", that we got a free subscription to file planet, at least in regard to AoC. Is this not the case, because if it is I just read a whole lot of pointless whining.

Sun Apr 27 2008 7:11PM Report
Talon1138 writes:

Beta Me :P

Mon Apr 28 2008 9:12PM Report
Newt writes:

I even downloaded comrade, and actually got the page to get a key, but when I logged in with my existing (free) IGN account it took me straight to the page with a bunch of prices.  They shouldn't have even PUBLICIZED this.  Its a fileplanet EXCLUSIVE, subscribers only, we don't care about anyone else.. beta.  

They don't want to fix bugs, they want people to preview the game that have money to spend on a fileplanet subscription, and thus, have money to spend on their game :)

Tue Apr 29 2008 7:10AM Report
kduddms writes:

oh~~~~~~~ nice~~

Fri May 02 2008 2:37AM Report
zippokai writes: people still need to be working to get AoC running, even in open beta. have u guys ever thought that these people are not actually getting paid to run open beta since there is no subscription fee? be open minded, dont be a fool and complain just because you're not getting the open beta spot. Sat May 03 2008 3:03AM Report
Lanthir writes:

well the "open" beta has been a bust.  There is no tech support from funcom for it.  The majority of people are crashing every few minutes if they are in game.  most people even with top end systems have to run at low settings to get decent FPS.  when they zone they are having 7-8 minute load screens.  These are people with cable internet, daul cores dual cards and such.  The issues are not limited to vista users either.  Rumor has it that they gave FP a 3 month old build for their beta.  If so was a big mistake

Sat May 03 2008 8:44AM Report
Saratha writes:

I have first a comment, and then a question.

The comment is: I am also upset about the way Fileplanet has handled this open beta. But it's not entirly their fault. Sure... if I have to spend seven dollars for the ability to download the beta, then I would like to have a guarentee that I'm going to get into the beta. Instead, -right- after I pay for the account, the oppertunity is gone. So now i'm out seven dollars for nothing. I wanted to be able to test this game out, to help in the testing process, but also, to see what I will think of the game. If I like it, you'd have -two- paying customers atleast, as I'd drag my boyfriend to play with me. It's how the pair of us came to pay Lotro.


So now the question: Will there be a seven or fourteen day trial of the game? With the fact that both me and my boyfriend would both play, I'd just like a trial run before I plunk down about one hundred dollars without knowing that I'll even like the game. Atleast if there's that, I'll feel less let down.


Looking forward to trying things out.

Sat May 03 2008 8:13PM Report
starmage writes:

Well? seem they use file planet....... not totally free :(

Sun May 04 2008 9:57AM Report
Tidus2810 writes:

What?! Limited Beta Key's!! What's going on here, Open beta my @$%! Open beta that I know is called "Stress Testing" meaning, finding out the server load. Plus, the word open, thanks to wikipedia, means that it's available to the public. File planet? Crap, that means you have to be a member of the Founders club to access the beta. So, AoC was lazy because they wouldn't handle key distribution and downloading their client, so they let Fileplanet do it. Seriously, I think that they have this idea that their game is going to be so great, "the world is going to play it-lets not let the game open because theres going to be tooooooooooooo many people playing it. Everyone and their mom's going to try and get this." Pft. Yeah the game looks good. real good. Nice idea. Realistically, you think everyone's going to play it? Yeah maybe 200,000. hell a million maybe, but for beta? get real. everyones too busy with the sunwell (WoW) to even twitch their nose at this beta. Bit of a bad start for Age of Conan.

Mon May 05 2008 1:35AM Report
Velzevul writes:

+1 !!

The game is sooooo great, that not everyone can play it due they slow comps...

I`m signed for beta with my Intel Core 2 QUAD Q6600 with G33 chipset, 2G Ram PC2-5300, GeForce 8600GT 512Mb, 10M cable .....

AND? I didn`t get key!! Key get some peoples with Celeron 700 for example!! LOL

Mon May 05 2008 10:49AM Report
c00ter writes:

lol I bought my game up front 49.99 usd  now this crap should of listened to my wife

Thu May 08 2008 7:59PM Report
Zamora writes:

Yo, kiddies...  Quit your bitching.  Everybody wants free this and free that.  It's enough to make one want to play a FPS for real if you know what I mean.  FilePlanet isn't evil.  They give access to all kinds of betas to non-subscribers.  If you weren;t so hostile, and actually subscribed and read some of their e-mails, youd know that.  I've been beta testing software for 15 years at least.  Get over it.  It costs a lot of money to run hardware and provide bandwidth on a level that File Planet provides. 

It sounds like a lot of people, fans of this game, got shafted, but don't blame FilePlanet for that.  Somebody in Funcom had to have made that decision.  IGN/Fileplanet only had a possible solution.  Nobody forced Funcom to use it.  However, if I'm a bigwig in a game developing software house, I'd hope that the logistics of running a large beta for a game like this isn't the thing I'm best at.  If it is, my game surely sucks.  As a bigwig, I'd welcome a company IGN that could guarantee a huge turnout.  And incidently, I got my key after about 20 minutes of being advised of the beta.

You have to realize there is a great deal of risk in doing stuff like developing trend-setting games.  The simple question of "How big should this beta be?" has multiple answers, and probably took weeks to figure out.  The shareholders, venture capitalists or whoever funds the developers want instant gratification, want the game on sale yestreday, last week even.  Incoming revenue is the only thing people think of, and every week you delay the rollout of a product, you are losing more money, or in danger of getting jumped by your competition.

Yes, somebody screwed up and called it an "open" Beta,  get over it.

If you want to go to a concert, you'll probably have to go thru TicketBastard to do it.  They take their skim right off the top.  Service charges per ticket and per order, can come to add 30% to the price of the ticket.  Why do you suppose that is?  It's a lot more convenient for everybody involved to use that model, and convenience is what this country is all about.    Yes, you'll never experience standing in line for 2 days for Grateful Dead tickets, but c'est la vie!  Put that next to your 64 oz SuperGulp.

I don't know how many paid subscribers FilePlanet has, but I'm one of them.  I've had opportunity to participate in dozens of betas, previews and the like.  I'm able to download all kinds of content, and go to the head of the line to do it.  How many of you punks actually provide decent feedback to the developers for ANY of the betas you've partiipated in?  Remember, Microsoft once sold beta copies of Windows 95, and as I recall, people stayed up all night to buy it., and they paid more than the price of a game to do so.  I'm sure you guys don't remember that, as many of you weren't born yet. 

In closing, get over it.  Nothing is fair in life.  The trick is to add more than you take away.

Now as far as the actual games goes, let's see.  It took me a few days to actually run the thing, as it didn't install icons.  You can't run AgeofConan.exe w/o runing the PatcherSetup.exe first.  Didn't see that written anywhere.  So, after playing for a couple of hours, on a Quad QX-6700 Extreme rig, with a 8800 GTX card, and 4GB 8500 RAM and a couple of 15K Seagate drives, the game seems laggy.  I'm pretty sure it's not my computer.  Perhaps it's my Internet connection.

I'd play more, but now I'm getting the Authentication error every time I attempt to play.  I'll have to try to figure that out, or is itthat everybody is trying to get to level 13, so they can get promoted to level 20 for PvP play tomorrow?

Fri May 09 2008 4:44PM Report
reoll writes:

I have a couple things to say that are completely off topic. When you are complaining about people whining: A. Don't whine about it, it makes you look like an asshole. (Honest) B. Please do not automatically assume that a person is a child just because you think someone is being unreasonable or immature.

Fri Jun 20 2008 8:27AM Report
reoll writes:

And yes i realize it is likely nobody will ever see that comment considering the last comment made on this post was over a month ago.

Fri Jun 20 2008 8:30AM Report writes:
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