It seems that World of Warcraft, has a worthy challenger in the MMORPG gaming arena that that is Age of Conan. This role playing game, from Funcom, is set in the fantasy world of Conan the Barbarian, the Hyborian Age. As you might expect Age of Conan has all the sword bashing and spell casting pair with excellent graphics that you might expect from a quality MMORPG. It also has a new twist, it’s rated M for Mature which means that cursing is allowed in chats, you may encounter an unclothed NPC or PC and that the blood and gore generated by this hack fest aren’t held back.
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Age of Conan is true to the genre. There is plenty of hacking and slashing action if you want it. It’s easy to get into a mode of moving quickly through the game slaying your enemies and hearing the lamentations of their women. The features like you see in any top notch MMORPG are there as well such as quests, banks, auction houses and maps with quick travel. Ultimately the game is about building power over time. At this point, Age of Conan gamers are still building toward this so it remains to be seem how this will affect game play.
On the downside, you do need a really kickin’ PC to play this game. For best results you’ll need a fast dual core PC with 4GB of RAM and a really high powered graphics card like the NVIDIA GeForce 8800. The game will consume about 25GB of hard drive space. You probably won’t be playing Age of Conan on your work laptop, that’s for sure. Another downside is that there have been frequent patches and some of these haven’t worked quite right, such as with the recent Age of Conan Error 103 fiasco.
The bottom line is that Age of Conan is really the first worthy competitor to World of Warcraft’s dominance in the MMORPG market. The graphics and the play quality are excellent. The system requirements though are demanding and there is the worrisome fact of frequent patching. However, Age of Conan promises to be a truly fun MMORPG experience in spite of a few warts.