AoC = Another Raiding Treadmill… #$%*

I’m really disappointed with this bit of information.  IGN posted up an exclusive look at AoC’s PvP and Raiding yesterday.  In the article they talk about Raiding and PvP in the “end-game” or rather max level.  The first waves of disappointment came when I read this:

“If you want to get the best armor and weapons in Age of Conan, you’re going to have to raid, something you can’t actually engage in until you hit level 80. There’ll still be dungeons that players can band together and delve into before the cap, but for large-scale, 24-player encounters against enormous bosses that require highly coordinated attack patterns to defeat, you’ll have to wait until the end game.”

*sigh*  So basically it’s another treadmill of raid to get gear to raid to get better gear to raid to get gear.  I thought we left that crap behind in World of Warcraft?  I’m tired of having to spend hours every night raiding dungeons for a chance at loot.  I’m tired of being forced to find 23 other players to even have a chance at getting good items or seeing epic encounters.  It gets worse.  You would think that perhaps maybe PvPing would be an alternative.  Well it is, but not only does it sound incredibly difficult but the gear that you can get from PvP isn’t even better than the PvE gear and only the best PvPers are every going to see it.  Here is how hardcore their system sounds:

“It’s also possible to lose experience when killed. According to game director Gaute Godager, this won’t drop you from one level to another, but it is possible for your progress to be brought all the way down to zero for your level if you’re constantly getting killed. To further add to this mechanic’s hardcore nature, you only gain a fraction (somewhere between one half and one third) of the experience for a kill compared to the amount lost for a death. Yikes.

The whole point of the system is for only the most skilled players to rise to the top, instead of having everyone who put in enough time eventually get to the highest PvP level. Once you do get high enough, special equipment unlocks and becomes available for purchase, and the gear is supposed to be extremely powerful. It’ll be comparable to raid gear, though its statistical bonuses will benefit PvP play more than PvE. According to Gaute, raid gear will be more accessible than the high-level PvP gear.”

So finding 23 other people to successfully raid is going to be easier than obtaining the PvP gear?  I don’t need a full time job here.  I need a fun game.  I’m getting very discouraged already that Age of Conan is taking 10 steps back after they took 1 step forward with their interesting combat mechanics.  I can’t sacrifice what little life I have to this game in order to have comparable loot.  So much emphasis is being placed on gear in Age of Conan that the only logical conclusion to be drawn is that gear will dictate strength.  If I can’t put in the time it takes to raid or PvP hardcore 24/7 then I will not stand a chance against someone who does.  No thanks.

I have been there and done that too many times.  I’ll be completely honest here and tell you guys that the thought of having to live through this horrible game design one more time makes me want to skip the game altogether.   Does this form of play interest ANYONE out there (aside from you millions still running on WoW’s treadmill)?  It doesn’t interest me at all.  I really had no idea that AoC was going to mimic WoW’s shoddy design.

Graev is sitting across the room shaking his head right now saying:  “The thought of having to raid and accrue DKP or participate in raids over and over isn’t appealing.  I don’t want to feel like I’m forced to attend every raid just so that I can finally have the DKP or points to cash in down the road.  I wouldn’t mind going on a raid every now and then but I don’t want to be forced into attending every single raid to compete.  I will once again have to wait until every other person gets their item or whatever until I can finally get something.  That just sucks.  I don’t want to have to modify my play style to be a hardcore raider.  I didn’t think this game was about raiding.  That’s not fun to me.”

Raiding Treadmills and Hardcore PvP grinds = Kiss of death

(I walked away from the comp and left this post sitting here unpublished to think things over and talk more with Graev…)

We have decided to still get the game.  -BUT- we will not be participating as “hardcore raiders”.  We’re going to go as long as we can without buying into that horrible excuse for gameplay.  If we can raid a couple nights a week in short raids and get some gear great.  But once we have to modify our playstyle we’re going to quit.

  • I just hope all the PVPers don’t look the same like in WoW. The addition of the required “resilience” has made every pvper of the same class in WoW look the same. I find that highly annoying.

    I doubt I’ll do many raids, but who knows yet. Depends how long they take and such.

  • I want to point out that this harsh PvP death penalty only encourages the zerging I talked about in yesterday’s post. People will travel in herds to avoid death. There will be fewer small scale fights because people who aren’t interested in PvE raiding will be forced to make an attempt at the PvP grind and having 1 death = 3+ kills is a mighty incentive to surive. Nothing good can come from this. Mark my words.

  • @KT, thank Blizz for only having single sets of armor for each class at each raid or pvp/arena level. AoC has over 1500 unique armor sets.

    @Keen, I’m just as disapointed as you are with this relevation. My friends and I left WoW after we couldn’t take any more raiding to stay geared to compete in world pvp and BG’s, and only came back the last several months after the changes of PvP gear which improved the game greatly for us. Although the direction Blizz is taking again locking down gear may have changed that for the worse again converting “pvp” to just arena’s for cookie cutter teams with the top gear.

    Any case, I’ll stick it out like you to see how the game shapes up, but if it turns into another PvE grindfest and raid game in order to compete in PvP I’ll be out of there.

    As for the PvP advancement, it’s likely you see players attempt to do Win trading like they did in WoW, or as you suggest employing tactics or ignoring objectives and moving as groups so they never die. I pity the casual pug player that pops into a quick game..

    Really this just blows me away, I don’t even see how the dev’s felt this was in the spirit of Conan, it feels tacked on like they didn’t know what to do for an endgame, short of stealing WoW’s flawed system.

  • PVP doesn’t seem hardcore time wise. But skill wise yes. It looks like if you pvp 24/7, you have a higher chance of dying more, which means you will have more chance to lose pvp XP. While person who may play very little and die less would win it all. However i have serious issue in the following:
    1. classes are not balanced
    2. classes are not balanced
    3. classes are not balanced
    4. once the person gets PVP gear the person will always be at top. Its like the rich gets richer and poor gets poorer (although such is life).

    In terms of raids… i think I am going to cancel my pre order today. ^^ I simply don’t have the time. I want to enjoy the game without feeling like i am always at a disadvantage because i have a F#@! Life.

  • I find your instant hating on raiding a bit odd. There is nothing wrong with raiding and fighting big bosses, when its handled properly, raiding doesnt HAVE to be a huge timesink, and theres decent systems on how to make gear drop, such as in EQ2, where if all the people who can use the item effectively have the item, it wont drop anymore.

    Raiding has been a part of every game, its really the only way for large scale pve, and Warhammer will have it too. Public quests are just mini-raids at low levels, despite the pvp focus of warhammer, pve content WILL exist, city siege bosses ARE raid bosses for instance.

    I decided not to pick up AoC myself, im just gonna wait for Warhammer at this point.

  • I believe WoW’s Honor system started out with only a set number of people being able to hit the top, but it was eventually changed to something again to token accrual. I highly doubt Funcom will keep a system that punishes the largest chunk of their subscribers (casuals) if they don’t like the system. I agree that it’s a bad system, but I doubt it’s been well tested, and I can definitely see some changes taking place.

    Also, if the raids are, in fact, only an hour or so long a piece, that’s really not that bad. WoW’s were bad because they required such a sustained time commitment, but AoC’s sound like they’re around the time it takes for anyone’s normal play session.

    (Just discovered your site, and I’m really liking it. Thanks!)

  • If it will only be WoW style raiding at the level cap as as a reasonable PvE option, then play to the level cap and then leave or play alts, simple as that. Assuming the way up there is fun, of course.

    It is Funcom’s loss in that case, not yours.

  • “Raiding Treadmills and Hardcore PvP grinds = Kiss of death”
    Meaning what? You and Graev won’t buy the game or is it that the game will die?

  • @Anonymous: WAR will -not- have this form of raiding. WAR will also not have treadmills. There’s a BIG difference between a big boss battles/PQ’s and a raiding treadmill. Jeff Hickman made it very clear in a presentation to the press that their company does not believe in the act of getting large groups of people together in order to raid.

    @Cameron: Maxed out in EQ. PvP’d quite a bit. 😉 I’ve been around the mmo block. (I really don’t understand why people always try and tell others to try a game) Since this is my blog my opinion is implied so I don’t really need to add the “In my opinion” when I say the death penalty is still harsh all things considered.

    @Andais: Meaning the system is the first step in the wrong direction for AoC and yes it’s a big factor in whether or not I, Graev, or my friends play.

    I think many people are missing the point on the raiding. There is a difference between getting some friends together to go kill a big dragon. That’s great, that’s even fun. Where that CEASES to be fun is when raiding no longer becomes about the killing of the dragon or the adventure. When it becomes about the treadmilling for gear in order to compete THEN it’s an issue. Raiding Dungeon A to get gear would be fine. It never stops there. You raid Dungeon A to get gear to raid dungeon B to compete in PvP then you raid Dungeon C to D to E to F then they add new instances so you raid those and all previous gear is worthless etc etc etc.

    Raiding Treadmills = Bad
    Raiding for the Epic encounter/adventure = Good

  • @Anonymous

    Raiding has rarely ever been part of PvP centric MMO’s, it doesn’t have a place in them.

    The instant hating of raiding by most PvP’ers is because it’s a playstyle that the players have absolutely NO interest in, the only reason many put up with it is it’s the only way to gain competitive pvp gear, or if they min/max it may be the fastest way to attain pvp gear.

    Why is it that you think AoC has to be designed as a WoW or EQ clone.

    I’d love to ask the AoC dev’s that, there’s so much more they could have done with open world pvp and sandbox play to make the game deeper than slapping in a raid system and pvp mini-games around the sides to ensure subscription retention rates stay higher as players attempt to chase after top end gear non-stop to ensure their advantage over other players.

  • Precisely Scott. You nailed it. I too would love to sit down with someone from Funcom and have them explain why they chose to place emphasis on PvE raiding in a PvP centric game. Unfortunately the true answer that we would never get is a combination of WoW being a success and having raiding and also the fact that raiding/gear treadmills are cruise control for game design.

  • A few things…


    Ok. Now that I have gotten that out of my system. As much as I hate to be a cynic, this is beginning to smell like Tabular Rasa or Vanguard. A hyped up fail of biblic proportions? Perhaps.

    I HATE HATE HATE when MMO mechanics and discussions boil down to a hardcore vs casual argument. I have written about this in my latest blog, but it is that sort of designing that holds games and communities back.


  • One day, a company will realize that rewards for being a hardcore player should be presented as mostly cosmetic changes…

    awesome titles, cooler looking armor, access to more convenient (but not better) NPC resources, extra emotes, more chat colors, access to different chat channels, boosts to alts, etc.

    By tying gear to progression in this way, you actively limit who can see high-end content. Wouldn’t it make more sense if *everyone* was competitive? If everyone could reasonably grind out gear solo, then you’d have people raiding and pvping for prestige.

    that prestige is reward enough. There’s no need to tie your ability to beat a specific dungeon or a specific player to your gear that you can only get through a horrific grind.

    Bleh. AoC wasn’t ultra-exciting for me, but this news makes me sure I won’t even bother with a trial.

  • Losing exp on death? Sounds like FFXI, which sounds like Funcom wants players to really get a good group of people parting together successfully and everyone doing their job correctly to do well in PVE, which isnt that bad if you think about it.

  • @Hexx

    Someone give this man a job at Funcom.

    Well said and I COULDNT agree more. More time spent shouldn’t equal greater chances of success. It is limiting and smothering to other playstyles. It would increase the competitive enviroment if alot of people could get the best stuff.

    Instead of being better because you played for 52hrs straight last week wouldn’t it be more satisfying if you were better because you outskilled your enemy? What are the hardcore people so afraid of? Chunking in time and making that equal skill is hollow and worthless.

    Think of TF2. Everyone has the same class, same weapons and same loadout. Success is directly related to a battle of wits and skill. Why is this so difficult to pick up????

  • Ah, yeah. I know you’ve played a lot of games. It occurred to me that my comment sounded a little harsh when I left it (but sadly, you can’t edit your comments).

    I just meant that the penalty isn’t as bad as it could be (and may actually be interesting).

  • Hey i think this is a cool mechanic:

    To further add to this mechanic’s hardcore nature, you only gain a fraction (somewhere between one half and one third) of the experience for a kill compared to the amount lost for a death. Yikes.

    Sure it wont stop group ganking in the game but when its 1v1 or 2v1 people will have to think twice before running up and randomly attacking you because unlike other games like WOW, there will be more than a body run back possibly,, there will be penalties.

    This is going to be a new and fun game, don’t worry too much about the raiding treadmill just yet. Enjoy the ride to 80 then worry about it.

  • After reading this, im glad that my original plan was simply to level one toon from 1 to 80 and get hired as a merc to try some siege PvP.

    Ill be lucky if i can accomplish all that before WAR goes Gold.

    No need to worry about the raiding.

    Try WAR, come back later on and make another Conan Alt.

    Im expecting 2-3 years of altaholic switch between WAR and AoC 😛

  • Let’s just hope that the top end non-raid gear, or decent PVP gear will be able to compete with the best of the best, IF you are skilled enough. If combat involved a greater deal of skill then other MMOs, it may be that skill > gear. Also I hope, similar to how high levels get little to no pvp exp for low level kills, that low levels suffer little penalty for being killed by the high level characters.

    Raids are only 1 hour long? I find that shocking fast. If they really are short enough to complete in such a small time frame, I may be able to participate more often. Its the 4+ hour 2 night a week raids that I’m not into. Again though, I hope skill > gear in terms of who raids bring with them.

  • @Hexx

    I think you got it right there buddy. I am so sick of the set up of old WOW where we would raid to get gear to pvp successfully then they just added more so we would have to start over and it was never ending.

    Instead of giving the people who already excel at a certain area such a PVP better weapons just to further dominate give them special or unique mounts, not faster ones, just different. People would still play to get cool things like that, I know I know I would.

  • That PvP death penalty is pretty harsh. If that was the PvE death penalty, then yeah, that’s nothing, but for PvP that’s brutal. I’m assuming though that kills are shared within groups (group of 6 kills 1 guy, all 6 group members are credited with 1 kill) or the system is completely untenable for all but the most elite of PvPers.

    Assuming kills are credited to all in the group,it kind of promotes ‘kill trading’. Since groups CAN talk to each other in AoC, Guild 1 group of 20 people agrees to battle Guild 2 group of 20 people. Guild 1 rushes up and . . . stands there to be slaughtered. Each person suffers 1 death, every member of Guild 2 gets 20 kills. Guild 1 comes back, Guild 2 stands there to be slaughtered. Every member of Guild 1 gains 20 kills worth of xp (net gain 17) and every member of Guild 2 takes 1 death (net gain of 17). Rinse and repeat as diminishing returns allows.

    I suspect it’s more likely that the xp for kills is split evenly with no bonuses, or simply not shared with the group at all. In that case, you end up in a negative-sum xp environment which is positively brutal. If kill xp is split evenly or not shared, then the sum total of xp distributed for kills is 1/3rd the sum total of xp lost to deaths, as any player that gets a kill results in another player getting a death penalty equal to 3 kills. You cannot have more kills than deaths in the game, so unless you’re one of the select few with the skill or luck to almost never die, nobody is going to get much out of pvp. I hope it’s really fun then, because that’s going to be the only reward. If it’s not fun because you just get steamrolled all the time, the PvP side of the game will die out.

  • Hearing about the raiding treadmill literally pissed me off. That was one of the main reasons why I left WoW.

    I’ll be doing the same thing as Higgs(post 21). *raises mug to Higgs.

  • @Hexx (15)

    You win at MMORPG design. 🙂

    @Bartlebe (18)

    MMO devs are still stuck in the past (MUD model). Each game that comes out brings a couple new ideas to the genre but there hasn’t been a single MMORPG, including WoW, that completely reinvented the wheel. Nor will there be, because when a studio is risking tens of millions of dollars, they want something that can guarantee them a modicum of success.

    A non-XP system like TF2 would be cool, but I don’t think it would work for an MMORPG. Look how easy it is to put down FPS games. It’s because your character isn’t getting any better, even though your skill might. People still want to see little blue bubbles work their way across the screen and they want the flashiest new toy to show off (and beat you over the head with).

    @Graktar (25)

    Hahaha, you hacked the game already and it isn’t even out yet! Brilliant! 🙂

  • @Snafzg

    I was just using TF2 as an example of skill being more important than time played. I wasn’t really suggesting it be as narrow as TF2, just as skill focused.

  • While the end game play disappoints alot of people, you have to look at it like this, 90% of the player base of a typical MMO wants casual, non PvP environment, it is all about making the majority happy to make money

    With it being states that PvE gear is the best, while it may be, there is still 2 avenues to get gear that may surpass PvE gear, PvP and crafted. Most PvP gear is good and the high end crafted gear is very good, but falls out of disuse very quickly.

    I am holding out my final thought as the game has not been released yet with so many unknowns, it is hard to theorycraft anything.

  • @Bart (28)

    For sure, I was just sayin’. 😉

    @Dan (29)

    I thought AoC was supposed to be a WoW-alternative, not a WoW-lite. Sure, most people play casually, however, I thought the entire premise behind AoC was PvP-oriented.

    I think the problem most people have in MMORPGs, even the casuals that play WoW, is that content that is only accessible for the hardcores is just bad game design. Even Tobold, a huge WoW fanatic feels burned by not being able to experience parts of the game because he’s just not hardcore enough.

    And when you claim 90% of players are casual, you’ve just gone ahead and pissed off 90% of your players. Stupid imo. 😛

  • It’s also important to realize that the PvE gear will still be powerful if not the best for most players in PvP. There isn’t an extra stat for pvp in AoC like there is in WoW. That’s why Gaute’s statement about PvP gear being slightly better in PvP confuses me. Once again players must step onto the PvE raiding treadmill and keep pace or they will forced to compete against the odds in PvP.

  • This sounds very similar to how WoW originally launched with the version 1 honour system…

    Only the very best PvPers who put in the most amount of time (and were successful) earned enough honour to buy the good PvP gear. Raiding was just easier, so most people farmed dungeon loot to compensate in PvP.

    The only difference seems to be that if your honour ranking dropped in WoW (version 1), you wouldn’t be able to use the gear earned at a higher rank.

  • I re-read the information on IGN, it states that the raiding starts at the level cap, This may become something that isn’t to bad of a inconvience since the content will be limited until the first free content update or expansion anyways. Although if everyone looks the same after getting the gear that would be “typical” if I may use that term. I still want “Crafting” the repetitive in game feature to be the primary source of great gear or equivilant gear. Why do games make crafting useless are Level XX ? It basically breaks the system because anyone really interested in a game will get to level XX eventually…

  • This sounds EXACTLY like version 1 of WoW’s honor/pvp system.

    – PvE Raiders can get the best gear in the game. It’s extremely effective in PvP.

    – The hardcore PvPers who invest countless hours get decent gear for PvP but maybe 5 on the whole server have it.

    – Those who don’t have the time to invest hours every night to raid or grind PvP ranks/levels are unable to compete with their gear from 6 man dungeons.


    Losing XP for deaths will encourage people to sit at exploitable/advantageous positions such as zone walls, camp vendors or portals and ..


  • I am excited by your post, a lot of what you describe is what made WoW so popular in the begining (I like the part asking if ANYONE likes that model, despite the millions of people who play WoW). If you want to have the best gear or be the absolute best player in a game, play a single player RPG. There will always be someone with better then you in a MMO, the point is there is something to aspire too.

    I think if there isn’t these things then there are no goals at end game, or nothing new, which then placies unattainable content creation expectations on the designers.

    Geting together to raid with my guild was the most fun I have had in a MMO, and I was not “hardcore” either.

  • I love it.

    @Cantwait: Do you really think is is about having the best gear in the game? I require the people who post on my blog actually read what I wrote before commenting. It’s best for everyone. So that you can walk away from this a more informed internet goer, it’s not about having the best gear but about being able to compete and participate in PvP without having to go the PvE raiding route.

  • Sorry my last reply spoke more on raids/crafting as opposed to PVP, My views on the Raiding Gear effecting PVP slightly deminishes what PvP is, basically because PVE/PVP are different facets of the game to enjoy by a different classification of player. I do not like that people who raid every night will own me in PVP, but then again will a PVP server make this better? Could you PvP a player in the raid so he loses his chance at the gear? PvP should be judged by skill more than it is gear, I never read a conan novel where he has the “Hardened Silver Helmet of Dargon Bane” allowing him to be “uuber”.

  • Thank you for the post. I just don’t remember WoW PvPers raiding much. All the PVP guilds I knew started raiding way past their ascedency to the top in PVP, just to show how easy it was. PVE gear was usually considered inferior to PVP gear anyway for PVP, even in purple to blue comparisons (with exceptions to prove the rule of course). And solid PVPers werent very sought after in Raiding guilds due to their time constraints. I think this is evidenced by how far behind on raiding content PVP servers are.

    I understand the quest for skill only pvp, but that game is called a FPS IMHO.

    I did read your post BTW, and for the record, enjoy reading them all. I just disagree with your take on this point.

  • For about two years World of Warcraft’s PvP was completely dominated by PvE raiders. They added a stat for PvP that changed a lot of things. That’s why it’s being said that this is similar to Version 1 of WoW’s honor system.

  • Man i am totally upset about hearing these revelations. I used to raid hard core in wow for 1.5 years, but then i got married and have a real life now.

    i dont have time for 3 hours a night 4 days a week minimum raiding.

    losing ex in PVP is such a retarded idea, it just helps cheaters and gankers.

    I left wow to come to this game, and now its just gonna be another wow clone, with a shittier UI and with all new bugs and problems 🙁

  • Come to think of it. Does anyone how significan gears are going to be in AoC? Obviously for WoW, its all about the gear. But for AoC, i am wondering if gear is really that significant.

  • There’s no reason to have PvP competitiveness based on gear.

    PvP has plenty of areas for competition…

    Player skill.
    Class choice.
    Spec choice.
    Team Construction.
    Gear *choice*.

    Ideally, you’ll have a situation where you can *choose* your class, spec, teamates, and gear. Combine that with skill and communication and you win or lose.

    I agree that MMOs thrive on ‘upgrades’, but gear imbalances aren’t the way to do things.

    Imagine if you were playing Quake, and only the person with the best frags-to-date can get Quad Damage and Railguns, and everyone else keeps shotguns?

    that’s waht ‘the best PvP gear goes to the best players’ does… it makes it so if you want to be the best, you need to start early, get your points, and then fight to keep them. Initially, it will be a fun fight, because no one is geared.

    But as soon as someone is geared, and they get a huge handicap? That’s ridiculous… in fact it’s backwards of how real competition is designed. If I want to play golf against Tiger Woods, he shouldn’t start the round at -5 because he’s better than me. We should both start at zero, at minimum.

    I’m a huge fan of PvP systems, but the concept that ‘the best players get the best gear’ is one that has to go away. reward players for being the best, but don’t destroy fair play in the process. WoW at least makes it so you’ll *eventually* be able to get the gear, AoC is actively designing a system where only the very top tier get the gear, which means the people best able to take a shot at the title have an extra handicap to overcome… ridiculous. There’s no reason you can’t reward the best in other ways, and keep the competition on an even playing field.

  • Hey there Keen!

    I feel ya man. I don’t have time for any hardcore PVE either. The hell with that.

    As far as the PVP goes, it might not be quite as bad as you think. If you cant go down a level, this means people will just PVP right when they “ding” – and max level it won’t mean anything.

    I do agree with some people that we might be looking at another TR / Vanguard. The game isn’t ready for a launch. Funcom is a bit infamous for bad launchs, as AO is considered one of the worst in the history of MMO’s.

    Anyway, we’ll see. I’ll probably still try it out, but I’ll wait for some “Open Beta” feedback from our Fileplanet fanboys before making a final judgment.

  • At the very least what we have here is a great game to hold us off until WAR. By the time we reach the max level and start the feel the hurt of PvE raiders being “l33t” we’ll be screaming WAAAGH!.

  • Keen – Hmm, true enough. As long as it’s a rewarding experience, I suppose. My MMO time is always shorter in summer months, so depending on “grind time” I might be able to hit 80 by Fall.

    The problem is, for me, that once a game starts becoming “work” and less like “fun”, it becomes harder and harder to play from a motivation level. Pushing and working to get max level doesn’t sound too attractive if you’re not enjoying the experience and you’re just planning on ditching the game in a couple months.

    Like you said though, perhaps we will have a “great game” to play. Time will tell. 🙂

  • The more and more I hear about AoC in a whole, the more is seems like they have copied DAOC exactly, from the whole rewards thing from PvP, this is the same a “realm points” in DAOC, with which you could buy realm abilities that would help you fight. In comparison ragarding raiding, in DAOC you had to raid to get various “epic” items to make yourself good etc. and it worked well, but the difference in my opinion was not that you needed 40 to get the item, you maybe only needed say 1fg, the problem largely in the begining was the spawn, trying to catch the monster while 1000s were looking for that same one was a nightmare. I have came to accept that in ANY MMORPG there will be raid to get epic gear, irrelevant of what the circumstances are, there is always going to be gamers who spend all there time playing games and trying to get the “unicorn” of the game. This is why the programers put these items in the game , to give hordes of people something to go for and make them stand out. Otherwise Mr X who has been playing the game for X amount of years looks the same as billy no mates who has just hit lvl 80 and thinks hes playing a healer when really hes playing a out and out tank..

    So I hate to admit it , but raiding is a part of any MMORPG, and belive me knowing mythic and how terrible they really are after 5 years of pathetic customer services to myself and the rest of the DAOC population. there will be raiding in WAR, I will bet my left nut on that one.

  • @Daedren

    72 Hours of gameplay reaches max level, basically like a single player RPG. so you can average less than an hour a day from launch to end of july early august and be max.

  • @Pellious

    Eh, that’s 3 days there, my man. Telling me that on May 23rd, people that have been playing 72 hours straight (and people will) will be max level?

  • yeah, i’m almost positive this information is available somewhere in the jumbled bunch of hype concerning the game if it isn’t … ooops … Level 20 (End of Single Player/Game Learning Experience) should be achievable in a couple hours time.

  • From what I have been hearing is that there is 240 hours of play to get to lvl 80, in comparison to DAOC which was only lvl 50, it took 8 days play time.

    8×24 = 192

  • @Marc

    Let me review my sources i’d hope it was something towards what you were saying as opposed to 3 days :p although if it were 3 days there would be a tremendous amount of end-game comment which is another thing about AoC, its suppose to be more about the end game than the mid-game. Supposedly as everyone reaches end-game it turns into skill based (only one could dream but the raiding gear eliminates this hope)

  • Im just hoping that people still have reason to login and play most nights because of this raiding thing. In WoW some only realy logged in for a few hours a week only at raiding times. Especially on a PvP server where people lose interest in trying to get PvP ranked gear, because only those that zerg the most will get it.

    The PvP servers would be totally empty until raid night, even then you couldnt get too many kills because the raids only pass the outdoor places once every few nights.

    I expect the PvP raiding to be similar to Shadowbane where people just blocked a path to the casters and whoever stayed too close instantly died to a mass of range classes. After a while people began alliances and a few servers just ended up being 2-3 gigantic zergs.

    Of course the smaller well organised guilds could take over a few mines and cities, however it became impossible for the smaller guilds to do anything once the zergs turned up.

    Maybe AoC PvP will keep the mid sized guilds, but as people bring more and more people to compensate for sucking the first will start those alliances and everything outdoor or seige wise becomes a zerg.

  • I think I’ve said it before many blog post ago. AoC will just be filler untill WAR shows up.

    So, if you pace your AoC carrier out correctly you could maybe hit level 80 a week before WAR goes Open Beta.

  • In my personal opinion, AoC looks better than WAR… this idea of healers healing by doing dmg is a bit “out there”…. but im getting more excited about AoC than WAR, that might change when I know more about WAR tho.

  • Personally im not happy with this news either.
    I want to play this game for fun, not leave sleep or other irl stuff so i will be able to raid enough for the things i want.

    With reading stuff about PvP im having very STRONG doubts on rolling on a PvP server, seems the more reasons it will be just a non stop ganking fest. Any thoughts on this?
    The sence of danger is nice, so is the ffa pvp rule.
    But this will mean what? A pk every 5 min or more?

    Im strongly considering on rolling on a normal server.
    Anyone is having the same thoughts about this PvP aspect?

    Regards Sefran.

  • Yep. I think I’ve decided for sure on a “normal” server. I’ll still be able to PvP in the Border Kingdoms and do all the true PvP features. There just won’t be FFA ganking in the leveling areas.

  • Was thinking the exact same thing there Keen.
    Thought i saw a article that all important features are in the Border Kingdom (high lvl wise that is).

    PvP as Pve (rare gather mats etc). Correct me if im wrong though.

    Seems like the normal server will be a far more enjoyable game experience.
    Although i strongly hope Open Beta will give me the insight i need for this before Retail hits and i have to make the choice between PvP or Normal

  • Well Keen hopefully the people at Funcom listen to the audience. They have so far, beta wise. So maybe it will be scrapped and switched into “all experience” raids. I do enjoy the fact of raiding in WoW to BE there not just to get look. I say more epic encounters and less grinding. But for them to consider this we might need to get an alternative way to earn gear, so start making suggestions. Mine is making the gear not important at all. As in if a lvl 80 with crap gear went against one with epic, there would still be chance for success. I’m hoping this game is more skill based and less about the gear. Let’s just hope…

  • That’s my solution. Make the gear 10-20% of your character max. After that allow alternative means of character progression for those who do not wish to sink time into PvE. Give obtainable PvP gear for everyone. It may take people longer who aren’t hardcore but it should be obtainable.

    I’m a strong supporter of raiding for the adventure and not for the reward. I loved being apart of one of the first groups in WoW to kill Onyxia. None of us cared what she dropped. We just wanted to see that dragon die. That mentality quickly died once gear meant more than any feeling of accomplishment ever could.

    Hexx brings up the great idea of cosmetic changes. That’s something I was hoping for in Warhammer Online. Since it’s now scrapped the idea is still out there for some mmo to grab and run with. I would love to design and work on a mmorpg that would counteract the necessity for gear grinds and raiding treadmills.

    But until people are willing to listen and acknowledge that it’s not WoW’s way or the highway we’re going to be stuck with systems exactly like Age of Conan’s.

  • Thanks for a series of informative posts!

    I hate to say it, but your revelations in the last three posts pretty much killed whatever mild interest I had in AoC. This last one was the straw that did in the camel. I have no intention of rewarding another developer with my money for shipping a MMO with a “screw you casuals!” end game. If all I cared about was a fun 1-to-cap game I’d still be playing WoW. Heck, if I loved raiding I’d probably still be playing EQ.

    I think that they are also gutting their potential market by shipping with such high system requirements. It won’t do them much good if PCs that can run the game well are commonplace a six months to a year from now.

    I am really sensing a major financial disappointment. Hopefully I’m wrong.

  • My opinion on this whole mess…raiding is lame and has no place in this game as far as gear progression. And they’ve stated several times in the past that the best gear in the game will be from crafting.

    I love how they have a harse penalty for dieing in pvp. That will eliminate the bad players that sit on here for hours on end to gain ranks. I don’t understand why you’re so worried about zerging. If 10 guys zerg 1 player, doesn’t that mean they all get 1/10th of the credit. Thus meaning they need to kill 30 people for every 1 death. If that’s the case theres going to be a lot of small groups running around pvping as there should be. Or else it will take that huge group forever.

    And yes there needs to be something given to the better pvpers for their progression besides looks. WOW pre bc was fun. There was a lot of decked out players in pvp gear that were very challenging to fight against. Some of them you knew they were always going to be with 2-3 of their friends everytime. We looked for those people. After the expansion, everyone had the same gear. There was no one worth killing.

  • This is pretty much all spot on. We see eye to eye on the raiding treadmill, I did that for a long time pre-TBC in WoW. I did my time doing Onyxia, Kazak, MC, BWL, AQ40, Naxx, etc… Now I just do battle grounds, arenas, daily quests and rarely a 5 man. Giving 3-4 (or worse, 5-6) hours a day to be in a hard core raiding guild just isn’t worth it. And make no mistake about it, to get the best pve gear, that’s pretty much what you have to do.

    I’m going to try this game, but like you guys if it turns into nothing but a clone of the standard model I’m out as soon as I can get into Warhammer beta or when War goes live.

    Why don’t we all get on the same server, we seem to be like minded players here 🙂

  • The other thing, wow’s version 1 pvp system required players to play countless hours everyday to keep progressing because how much they advanced was based on which percentage they fell under. They didnt get a penalty for dieing or sucking. AOC’s system allows casuals to advance, just not as fast. As it should be. But they aren’t punished because they are unable to play constantly. Originally in wow if say you went on vacation while making a run for rank 14, you would lose so much. AOC you won’t. You’ll be getting exp on every kill going towards the next level, not having to worry if you have the most honor on your server that week to level a certain percent. You guys say its the same or similar. I don’t see a comparison.

  • @RajunCajun
    That seems like it would be the idea.

    They have some-what listened to the beta players, but as seen with this new raiding information, they still have their own ideas in mind they may not be so great but they are persuing them anyways.

    72 hours is temporary, they will slow it down, but I dont think they’ll slow it down to 240, maybe double, but this isn’t a bad thing if anyone remembers or played vintage UO, you could max out skills in days and everything you wanted in a month, then all the maxed players explore on a equal basis and gank one another, dungeons, guild wars(Too fun)[NOT THE GAME]. This means the game is built around end game content which is percisely what a bad game lacks, When I make it to level 80 I want the desire to still login because theres stuff to do, thats what makes a MMO different from a standard RPG, it never ends supposedly.

  • Iam with Cameron on the exp penatly with pvp. Makes for an intersting game, possibly frustrating but then where is the tension, the sweaty palms in a pvp areana with out some sort of threat. As long as the rewards for winning out weigh the penalty it will make for some fun encounters …. conan is going to be a brutal game, so were the books ….

    As for raiding, iam not a big raider but if like you there is an option for a few raids every week then iam cool with that. Find a great guild, like the older gamers and you will be set ….

  • The reason they do this is because they THINK they need to do it to retain subscriptions. Remember they don’t care about you. They don’t care whether you live or die as long as YOUR money is coming in. Now in order to get investors to well, invest, you need to prove that you can keep subscriptions coming in.

    Like most investors they want a sure thing not a shot in the dark. So they copy what has shown to retain subscribers. I’m both happy and sad that they are doing this. First I am going to game development school and am glad they keep making these mistakes so that I will be the hero and save the day with a new way keeping subscribers. Its funny that the system I want to use is already available but they just choose not to use it. They simply can’t imagine that players will flock to something new and fresh instead of fighting over scraps of outdated playtypes.

    Remember that crafted items are also in the game too. I can’t remember where the post is but they wanted to have craftable gear that is on par with the PvE raid loot as well as the PvP raid loot with all the gear being modifiable with gems and other alterations. I keep hearing that gear is 20%-25% of the game, 20% luck (as in crits), ~40% skill set (think of guild wars) and from your spec choice and modifiers to your character such as gems, alchemy, and so forth, and the final part from your ability to manage the combat system.

    Some of the high end Acheronian gear or Atlantean gear may have another 10-15% bonus or something but the rare components can be sold on the Auction House to craft similar gear. Yeah your blocked from high end raiding but you can still get money over time to get the components to craft something similiar.

    I know I know its still not what they said they would do. People need to take action then. Money talks guys. Organize a boycott and see how fast the code changes. The more people that get involved the faster it happens =D.

  • IF crafting gives gear that can be on par with PvE RAID gear then all is well. But that seems highly suspect right now. If PvP gear is for the “best” and it’s only slighlty better than the PvE Raid gear… doesn’t it stand to reason that making crafted gear as good as both of those somewhat diminishes the accomplishment of being the “best” pvper or hardcore raider?

    I have a lot of doubts. But if crafted gear is on par then I’m fine. If crafted gear can keep me competitive then I’m fine.

  • Not sure how I feel about the xp loss. It will add to the tension of pvp. I wonder if there will be some type of practice area where pvp xp is not tallied. It seems like a system like this will have a huge impact on PUG’s. It may make it harder for casuals to advance… and find groups to team with… kind of reminds me of the arena system in another game people may have heard of….

  • They’ve said that only crafted items will have sockets. Up to 4 sockets per armor/weapon in different sizes or what not. The gems that are added will make the gear better than looted gear. Although some rare gems will be from raiding, which you can just buy from someone. So you aren’t forced to raid unless something drastic has changed from what they’ve been saying for awhile now. And for pvp and gaining ranks…i believe they’re giving the higher levels additional feats as well as armor. So even if crafted gear was better for pvp, the best pvpers will have a reason to compete still. And some people just dont like gathering mats. Either way, whether its from gathering/crafting, raiding, or pvping the armor should all be fairly close.

  • Nice write up Keen.

    I went ahead and pre-ordered based on something you said in an earlier post about the 1-6 PvE being so good. I’m not too worried about the end-game of AoC because I’m not planning on sticking around once I get there ;o)

    I’ve pretty well given up on companies allowing the current crop of devs to break out of “the formula” and offer alternative end-game play to people that aren’t interested in “raiding” and hardcore PvP as “the” end-game (live events, “epic” quests, repeatable content with “twists”, titles, et al).

    Basically I plan on AoC being a “filler” till Warhammer (which does seem to be offering at least some alternative “end-game” content), I think AoC will fill that role quite nicely…I should be just bumping up against “end-game” by the time War comes out and I can leave the “Sword EVE” (sweve?) game play to those that enjoy that style.

  • And maybe this applies…they’ve said crafting schematics come from quests. Maybe by saying the best gear comes from raiding…maybe there’s crafting quests that involve killing raid bosses to get a certain component. I know you’ll have to gather materials to make something to show the master trainer before learning a weapon/armor schematic. So we may only have to kill a boss once, and not spend months doing it over and over.

  • I was only joking when I said the new MMOs would have the same old raiding. They must have taken me seriously. 😛

  • heres some super old DEV quotes someone pulled up from the forums.

    interpret them as you wish, i have a feeling some of their vision has changed since late ‘O6

    Jayde Freitag, 11. August 2006

    raids DO NOT equal tedium.
    raids DO NOT have to be long or boring.
    raids DO NOT have to involve spamming 1 button for 6 hours.
    raids DO NOT mean you have to do them every day of the week.

    ..Stuff like that…that’s just the way that SOME raids in SOME games were designed. Honestly, some of you guys could benifit to play more games than WoW and possibly EQ.

    ALL “raids” imply is a singular premise: A raid requires more than 1 group to complete. That’s all. No more, no less. It means the scale is bigger.

    Athelan Montag, 06. Februar 2006

    Content needs to be consumable for all players, this is the crux of the issue not raids, not hardcore not how as long as you can get access to it in some way.

    raids are fun, raids will be in Conan, not as the sole way to obtain the super fantastic amazing item of doom, but as challenging encounters to unite guilds to purpose and to put all the unique aspects of the game into glorious battles.

    Athelan Dienstag, 11. Oktober 2005

    I think it is an inherent flaw in these systems that bases your “rank” of quantity of PvP participation/kills. The systems themselves are designed to recognize “PvPers” and their abilities but in the end its just a time sink in the current implementations.

    I think it was a big mistake to put items/gear as a PvP reward that rivaled or was better than gear gained in raids. It made PvP into a treadmill instead of recognizing the true champions.

    In Conan our PvP rewards will be based around PvP so they will be useful to a PvP player but will not imbalance the rest of the game for everyone else.

    Athelan Dienstag, 19. September 2006

    No we are not going to make PvE items worthless in PvP. That would be a pretty ignorant thing to do. Probably more ignorant than not considering the point you bring up about “raid” geared people dominating PvP. With the possibilities for crafted armor tailored through gems and even the potential for PvP stat specific gems that could be used in crafting I see no reason to worry. Its all about balance, which isnt going to be possible until said items exist for comparison will it

    Jayde Freitag, 22. September 2006

    Most of the craftable items will be from storebought components or materials gathered in the resource and building playfields. At the high-end, however, the best enhanced versions of items or recipes will occasionally require components that drops from mobs instead of just being gathered.

    Athelan Montag, 11. September 2006

    So lets say I have +20 to my stats through PvP. It very well could make up for the fact I am somewhat lower level or have less gear than a raiding guy, but I probably cant be a naked level 25 with a high PvP level and beat a guy who is level 80 and been raiding.

  • You guys are all retarded, read the article. READING COMPREHENSION FTW

    You dont lose xp when u die in PVE, its for PvP. It works like the WoW Arena point system, when u win u get points when u lose you lose points. When u get a kill u get points and u die u lose points.

    It also clearly said that the PvP gear will be equal to the gear u get from raiding except it will be better for PvP than the PvE gear. (same as in WoW)


  • Well I’ll still try it out. Definately not looking forward to a raid A for B to C…like you mentioned but I do want to see a new “World” so I’ll try it. If I get to 80 and am not enjoying it then I’ll quit.
    My playtime:
    WoW (first time) =7mths
    Wow (2nd time after 6mth break)=8mths
    AoC=tbd, 2mths? 6mths, up to them to make a great game. otherwise I’ll be in WAR.

    I treat em like I beat em and quit when they are not fun.

  • Let’s not all get too hasty with our “the sky is falling” thoughts. We really need to see how things play out before making rash judgments based on 1 IGN interview.

    For one thing, we don’t know how much better the raid gear is then any other gear. If it has a few extra stat points or dps, is it REALLY going to impact the casuals (myself included) that much?

    How long are the raids? What kind of commitment to they take? Is the drop system random or based on the actual party members present? How much gear drops (and again, how good is it, really?) I think a lot of these questions still need to be answered. Raids could be a one night affair for all we know right now.

    For PvP, we have NO idea how much difference strategy and skill will play compared to gear. Unlike WoW and other MMOs where auto-attack and percentages are king, I am hoping that AoC’s manual ability to dodge around and block will make a difference. If it does, it will greatly diminish the effectiveness of slightly better gear. The key here is MODERATE improvement over non high end raid/pvp gear and other gear.

    Now I agree, the IGN news is a bit disheartening, but I am not going to get all depressed and upset over it yet. I was excited about WAR, but every video I’ve seen makes it’s combat look very slow and almost turn based. Maybe it’s not, but I have yet to be impressed by it. That said, this is my hope for relief from WoW, even if it is a tad too WoWish for my liking based on what we know.

    Just my 2 cents. Great gameplay is great gameplay. If they can manage that without screwing casuals, we will be in good shape. Time will tell, looking forward to spending some time in the open beta. At least they said (hopefully they mean it) there won’t be faction rep to grind…

  • If it turns out that high end crafted gear is on par with raid gear I’d certainly be willing to give AoC a shot. The IGN article didn’t give that impression, but it all comes down to what game materializes at launch.

  • @Khaaz: Speaking of reading comprehension.. can you point out where anyone here ever implied the exp loss was for PvE? Didn’t think so. 😛 But thanks for the name calling! Run along now! I think there’s a game of Warsong Gulch starting up.

  • game is not even out yet and we are already kicking it for having a a bull endgame? when tabula rasa came out 70% of the quests past level 30 did not work for months! mmo games evolve. devs HAVE to focus right now on game mechanics and fist 30 or so levels and i doubt the end game will get hashed out until a year from now

  • As it stands now, you can get *Almost* the same gear in wow from 25 mans as you can from casual 5 mans. I don’t see why everyone looks at wow and says it all about the raiders, you can do quests for epics that are as good as raid loot.

  • Skullforged, back before TBC the game was extremely lopsided. The best gear in the game for everything came from 40-man raids. Only the select few who spent 18 hours a day could get the PvP gear that wasn’t even as good as the PvE raid gear. It was this way for almost two entire years. Most of us are vets from WoW’s oldschool days and it was bad enough for us to quit.

  • We can fault games for the way they we’re years ago sure, I prefer to talk about games at preset when comparing. I’d be happy if AoC is what wow is now with less kids and funner game play. It’s one of the only games I’ve played that allows *truly casual* gamers a chance to get some good gear.

  • We’re comparing because AoC’s proposed system is exactly like WoW’s old system that sucked. 😛 AoC is proposing to be like WoW WAS not like WoW IS. Does that make sense?

  • I think we read a different interview, I didn’t see them getting into extensive details about what gear you can get from 5 mans, however I think they should change up the pvp system a *little*.

    We should just see how it goes in the end.

  • Their statement right in the beginning: “If you want to get the best armor and weapons in Age of Conan, you’re going to have to raid, something you can’t actually engage in until you hit level 80.” shows that the best gear comes from PvE raids. Later they make the statement that: “Once you do get high enough, special equipment unlocks and becomes available for purchase, and the gear is supposed to be extremely powerful. It’ll be comparable to raid gear, though its statistical bonuses will benefit PvP play more than PvE.” shows that clearly the PvP gear is beneficial for PvP but comparable to Raid gear and slightly better for PvP than it is for PvE. The PvE gear is never said to be better for PvE than PvP though.

    That’s where the comparisons to oldschool WoW are being made. That’s how it originally was in WoW. The average player is going to have to PvE raid to get gear to compete in PvP because the BEST gear in the game comes from either PvE raids or being a top Pvper.

  • The best pvp gear in wow is from the BEST arena players and I can still kill them with season 1 arena gear. I hope it will be based mostly on skill and not as much on gear, like they are doing in WAR.

  • Actually I found PVP’ing easier in WoW with non PVP gear back before TBC. Since TBC, grinding out honor became a necessary evil to survive at all in Arena or BGs (due to resilience, which I hate). Even though I had NO shot at the best pvp weapons, the truth is neither did 95% of the other people I played against. They were pretty much all in instance and crafted loot like I was. As it stands now, you HAVE to spend hours grinding boring BGs for gear just to have the same as your opponent.

    I also believe most hardcore raiders will be spending their time raiding, not pvp’ing. So those that have the best gear will be great against a AI enemy, but it will take them a long time to learn to defeat skilled players who spent all their time PVP’ing and not raiding.

  • I have to agree with this topic. I want to be able to play the game and explore around by myself at times. Yes I like to form a group and do a raid once in awile but not all the time. I am already ” paying ” a monthly fee to play, I should be able to find the best gear on some unique monsters. This is basicly the reason why I don’t play WoW anymore, I reached a level 70 shaman who blizzard nerfed the hell out of and just got sick of the game. I’m getting older now, I’m still a gamer but not full time. I realy don’t have the time anymore to grind for days and lfg in jump up and down like a clown town. I want to be able to come home from a hard days work and just sit back and go into a differnt world and enjoy what I’m ” paying ” for. I was looking foward to this game so much, but after I read this news I felt dissapointed.

  • @Keen I wouldnt think giving a crafter some glory for being the BEST at his craft would be diminising to anyone, raider,pvper,or best dressed… good gear is good gear and how ever its attained should not be looked down upon> crafting really is the backbone of a truly well liked game… sorry I keep bringing up daoc, but back in the day it was the crafter that held top billing in armor and weapons.. and at least on my server top crafters were Gods, never met one I didnt like…its just the type of people that can take hours of crafting>the true hardcores!!!

    who knows you’d probablly find Pvp’ers and Pve’ers alike searching these gods out to make them the best also!

    As for going over the edge and making snap judgements on a past time I look forward to before UPS has even drop kicked it to my door? By CROM I refuse!! I’d just as soon decapitate you all right now 🙂

  • @MrVenom

    Keep in mind this is a business, one they paid quite a lot of money for already. No matter how much they might agree with you, they are going to make the game that the most amount of people will buy and continue to pay for for years to come. If wow has shown us anything, it’s that have to grind for everything(raid loot, pvp loot and even now with repeatable quests) keeps people paying.

    I for one loved raiding in that game, working hard with a group you like and achieving a goal not every “casual” random person could. Same with pvp, if every single person could get the best gear it wouldn’t be fun to get the best gear. For a lot of people being the best(or close to it)is the reason they play and the reason they pay.

    Every decision they make will make some people mad whilst make others overjoyed. They can’t please everyone, I think they will simply go with what they can make more $$$ off of.

  • hmm? did I say would be diminishing? I think I meant wouldn’t be,
    but tis no matter > back to my champion lvl grind lol> so many good memories of Midgard I had to go back and let Valhalla sooth me till the AoC blood bath begins /wave.

  • I for one don’t trust IGN’s reporting at all. Until I see more reputable sources saying the same thing, I’m going to reserve judgment.

    That being said, we don’t 100% know what AoC’s PVE aspects will be like. To the best of my knowledge, no one has played end game yet. Maybe they’ll be so much fun we’ll be excited to decide between PvP and raiding. I doubt it too, but I don’t know. The fact is any similarity (no matter how vague or unspecific) to WoW sends people, who have quit playing WoW, running for the hills. It’s understandable. WoW is one of the most monstrous time sinks ever. It consumes your entire life, and leaves nothing but maxed characters 10 levels below than the new level cap in its wake.

    So, again, we’ll see. I’m not going to go worship at the altar of Warhammer, just because of some IGN article.

  • My only beacon of hope right now is that a dev on some website i think it was warcry or something said that raid gear isent nearly as overpowered as it is in WoW, and skill/class should be more a factor than your gear, if you posses that skill that is

  • @skullforged

    What a wonderful idea you have, Hmm.. I would still pay for a game like that and enjoy it very much. When you create your character there could be a bunch of check boxes. The ones that you check would send you to different servers. Sure you have to grind and I don’t mind the grinding to get xp and materials to make items with. But you can choose what type of ” player ” you are. Lets say for (1).Hardcore you play the game the way it’s ment to be played at full force even if the odds stack against you. When you die you die.) (2). Raid player, This type of player can log on all day and all night and hang with the guild and do raids till his or her eyes bleed. (3). Casual player, this player logs on and can have fun exploring and grinding just like the other players, but they can do an instance by themselves or with a group. If they do it alone the monsters just get a bit hard to do but not impossible. If they bring more players in the instance gets tougher. This for me would have great replay value for a price. I can put the game down if I wanted to and come back to it 3 years later, pay a monthly fee just like everyone else and continue on my quests. Without trying to get a group going or a certain class of characters together. I would gladly pay to be on that server. If I come by some guildmates or other travlers that want to join fine, if not thats ok too.

  • highly disappointed as well, so glad there are actually more ppl like me not wanting the old wow-treadmill back. but I’m still going to get the game, see how it is until lvl80, which will take a working person gaming at least until WAR is released. and, keen, what keeps me intereseted is the possibility of crafted gear. if that could be compared with high-end pve-gear then i might be fine.

    thx for the great blog, been reading for some time now. really good!

  • I know this is slightly off topic and i should post it somewhere else, but does anyone have just a slight idea if AoC is working on Lunux Ubuntu with no adds like Wine and shit like you need for other games? And what about Mac? I’m pretty sceptical of the “Games for Windows” logo

  • @keen

    First off I have to say you seem to be comparing AoC mostly to WoW but your initial argument really isn’t well justified. That is in having to compete in PVE content to get PVP gear. In WoW currently and since last February if you use PVE gear in PVP your pretty much going to get destroyed by the folks with the PVP gear of equal caliber, which is much much easier to get.

    Also the treadmilling thing in comparison to WoW is all wrong as well. Your joining 2 opinions here and making them 1 when you need to seperate them. For 1 the thing that wrecked WoW’s PVE content was the rediculous ease of getting the uber end game items. You “don’t” have to solid raid to compete when you can buy nether vortex’s and BT/MH loot with badges now. So this is the first part of it, which also has a lot of inlfected opinion of my own. PVE in WoW was a heck of a lot more fun back in the AQ/Naxx days when it was extremely hard to get loot and only the best of the best organized had it.

    The second part of that is that you are saying you are tired of this grind system, but there is really no other way. Where your problem lies in this is “you” are making those statements from a loot centric presuposition. Some people actually like the raiding, and aren’t there just treadmilling for the loot. In that way, the loot has to be the barrier to the next piece of content. IE: what you would call the treadmill, the best of the raiding guilds look forward too.

    Now will add to this last one and say that the handling of loot hasn’t been done all that well in the past. In that it takes a group far to long to get “everyone” the gear they need in order to move on past that content, it no longer becomes a question of skill but time. What should happen is that the faster you are able to kill a boss, the more loot it drops, ie: you shorten the time it takes to kill him by 10 or 20 seconds and groups won’t have to spend 3 months raiding the same place to clean it out.

    The big thing here is the actual problem with what most of us long time mmo’rs are concerned with has not been answered, which is the handling of the loot and how it will be distributed via the raid content. Honestly I crave the harder to get loot and having the back in the day with BWL/Naxx, or take it further back to negafen and lady vox. When you had a group skilled enough to do the content you got to wear the loot as a badge of honor. This is where TBC raiding mixed with PVP-easymode-loot and badge gear really destroyed the epic nature of loot in WoW. At that point yah it can be a treadmill because to stay that 5% ahead of other people you have to be there 5 days a week. But if that is the only type of endgame that satisfies you that is a question of “your” desires. Some people take there time more casually and get a lot of enjoyment out of taking down the hard to beat content with their friends over time understanding it doesn’t matter if we have more loot then the next guy.

    Keep in mind, in WoW they did a solid job to seperate the loot between PVP and PVE which ended up working properly in the end, and so far all we know of loot is that funcom has stated the PVP gear and PVE gear will be oriented for its proper uses.

    We can make assumptions til were blue in the face but with any MMO end game is as risky business. End game developers need to be flexible and willing to throw out a bad idea, which we won’t know until we are there. The good news out of that is Conan is releasing to a mature audience and already established to the community that it is not just going for all out game sales, but its trying to meet the need within a set genre inside a genre.

    As far as the PVP exp loss, well, I can’t say because I have never played in a system like that. I will say that in general I do very well in PVP so I think positively about the system from the outset knowing that I won’t have to participate in a time grind so much and my skill will be reflected by my PVP lvl and gear in a much more honest way. Unlike the warlord/marshals in WoW which didn’t say anything about player ability, when PVP ought to be all about player ability. I think Conan’s system adresses that issue. Your going to have to play smarter, not longer.

    I don’t wanna come across like a fanboy, I’ve been playing mmo’s since uo released and I’ve seen a lot come and go in that time, and I’m just not willing to throw my hat in the ring with a game that hasn’t even released. What I will say is they have made some positive steps to make battle more interactive. They have kept the great ideas from before and not thrown the baby out with the bathwater which so many other MMO devs do to try to show they “not” this or that game. They have limited thier audience from the outset as to say “hey, we wanna make the game we want to play, if its the game for you, come join us”.

    After experiencing UO/DAOC PVP and EQ raiding, I must say WoW was like the mmo with training wheels on it. You “could” find a very difficult endgame, but they made it way to easy for too much of the curve so to speak. I want my skill to seperate me from the other players, I want my good decisions and ability to give me gear advantages over my foes. Isn’t that why we play character development centric games? I mean we of course seek fun PVP and PVE but at the same time we could be playing single player RPG’s or FPS’s if the huge character developement part wasn’t interesting to us. Not to mention throwing that into a persistant online community.

    Keep in mind. Blizzard is not a stupid company and they want to keep their players. They with all their money and experience still cannot master PVP and create a more everlasting system that doesn’t become a repetative grind. So with a game like warhammer that is going to focus more on the PVP side of things you gotta ask yourself how many times you can sack the opposing players city only to have it given back a week later and do it all over again. These are MMO’s people, PVE progression with ever changing new content “has” to exist in this genre. You don’t ask impossibilities of other genres, you just accept them for what they are.

    I see a lot of people bag on WoW and what not, and I too talk negatively about it to my own shame really. Blizzard made an excellent game, that is now 4 years old. Most people are just bored with it because it offers nothing new to us and so were prone to unjustly hammer on the system, when in actuality it was a masterpiece of a game. So you gotta look at the new things Conan is bringing to the table and see if its enough for you to wanna play it, or wait for something a little more forward thinking.

    Sorry that this turned into a disortation but I do like your site and it makes me a bit sad too see you jumping to the gun on issues we can only make assumptions on because we haven’t been given all the info. I hope you guys do play and I hope Funcom comes through for us, but more then anything make sure you enjoy the ride along the way, because no MMO lasts forever and if you just focus on what “isn’t” in the end game your not gonna have a good time.


  • Well I hoped for a system, like it was in guild wars, where PvE Hardcore players hadn’t absolutely no advantage to others in PvP, they only had the coolest looking armor. 🙂
    (there was no difference of pvp and pve chars, because you could unlock everything (upgrades, skills etc), you could get in pve and so only the skill counts)

    Anyway I guess, you should wait untill you know how strong the advantage of 24/7 hardcore raiders is. It would be fine, if there is just a little advantage. I think it could be possible to balance that in a good way, although I’m quite sceptical about this.

  • Sorry wanna add 1 more point about the PVP system.

    The one truly great thing a system like this adds is “fear of death” which in past MMO’s with no penalty has created a deathmatch style FPS feeling that really detracts from a more realistic based combat.

    I don’t know how many people here have played the DOTA mod map for war3 but if you have you may have an incling what I am talking about here. It is extremely important in DOTA not to get greedy and try to go for a kill at all cost, and self preservation is paramount to winning matches. dieing costs you majorly because you lose your gold that you need to upgrade your weapons, and your enemy gains gold. Its more on a 1 to 1 ratio in dota, but its also only a 1 – 2 hour match and it doesn’t need to last like an MMO does.

    So think about it now, you will see a lot more running away and hesitation to fight because of harsh penalties, that is going to breed a much more intense and interesting PVP dynamic then we have experienced in any game before this since Ultima Online, where the penalty was the loss of “all” your gear you had on. It could even be that missing ingredient that we haven’t been able to get our fingers on, real honest to god intensity and risk in PVP.

    I like it honestly, I can’t wait to actually play a game where I genuinely care if I die in PVP. =)

  • @47 “The more and more I hear about AoC in a whole, the more is seems like they have copied DAOC exactly, from the whole rewards thing from PvP, this is the same a “realm points” in DAOC, with which you could buy realm abilities that would help you fight. In comparison ragarding raiding, in DAOC you had to raid to get various “epic” items to make yourself good etc. and it worked well, but the difference in my opinion was not that you needed 40 to get the item, you maybe only needed say 1fg, the problem largely in the begining was the spawn, trying to catch the monster while 1000s were looking for that same one was a nightmare. I have came to accept that in ANY MMORPG there will be raid to get epic gear, irrelevant of what the circumstances are, there is always going to be gamers who spend all there time playing games and trying to get the “unicorn” of the game. This is why the programers put these items in the game , to give hordes of people something to go for and make them stand out. Otherwise Mr X who has been playing the game for X amount of years looks the same as billy no mates who has just hit lvl 80 and thinks hes playing a healer when really hes playing a out and out tank..

    So I hate to admit it , but raiding is a part of any MMORPG, and belive me knowing mythic and how terrible they really are after 5 years of pathetic customer services to myself and the rest of the DAOC population. there will be raiding in WAR, I will bet my left nut on that one.”

    -This is exactly why I felt that Asherons call was the best MMO game in history, raiding didnt mean squat, the loot in that game was about getting lucky with drops, which means even a lvl 1 rabbit (well not exactly but you get the meaning) could drop the +9 uber vorpal sword of pure ownage and this meant that everyone and anyone could have access to the best gear in the game cause you spent your entire gaming experiance constantly farming/selling/trading to min/max your character and it worked well. Basically it was Diablo in a MMO form.

  • Basicly, i’ve lost all my respect for Funcom by now, my first thoughts about the game was “WoW, at last there are some people thinging in right ways and making a game all people can enjoy. And the world of Hyboria is the perfect place” But now, with those news out they’re just screwing up both the wonderfull lore of Conan and the interrest for thousands of hoping fans for the game. I mean, basicly, they take in serously good game designers nd make a wonderfully looking world. They they boost up the graphics to the point where even the most powerfull computer on the market may have problems handling. But people can live with a bit lag or not sucky graphics as long as the game appeals players with the fun new features. But now, they mess up by showing how lazy they actually are in figuring out new things to improve the MMO world, they basicly improve graphiscs and clash up a system all MMO players have been sick of for years.

    Alltho, i still want to try out the game and see how far the game is corrupt, maybe, by the time i get to max lvl, Funcom get’s hit by the wise hammer in the head and launches an megapatch changing the end game system, something i really doubt. Seems like it’s going to be either Warhammer Online or some other MMO waiting to get released somewhere in the future

  • I’m not saying HellGate is the best game out but they do have a great loot feature. Where as you and I can kill the same monster and when it drops the loot we both get to pick up our goodies. We both get rewarded for our time spent killing the creatures. No one gets ninja’d at the end, you might not get the item you wanted but you still get something. Maybe next time you try an item for your class will drop. If the raid system works like that then it wont be so bad.

    We pay to play to have fun, and no matter what when that fun runs out so does the cash. When I played WoW and stood around lookin to group as a Shaman in the begining it was not that bad. Afterwards when Blizzard decided to make my Shaman useless in PvE and PvP thats when I started getting tired of playing, never mind having to do the same instance over and over and over again. Thats a different story altogether. Now my copy of WoW sits in my bookcase coverd in dust as I wait for new hope. So far I’m still waiting, yes perhaps for that ” Diablo in a MMO form.”

    Skill points is another issue I have as a PAY player. Ok I ubderstand you should build up your PATH on your skill tree to what you want to be when you grow up. But lets say you decide to take one path that you enjoy, not the cookie cutter one, you should be able to enjoy the game that your paying for. You should be able to solo if you wish or join a group and still be able to fight off mobs. Not get nerfed into uselessness. Or stand around wanting to do an instance but since you did not take the healer branch your not wanted. This feature alone can make or break the game for me as a payer player. I spend all that time leveling and raiding only to be useless in the end? I should have taken the cookie cutter path? How can I say this, it’s almost racist in away.

  • I wanted to say up front I enjoyed your PvP weekend videos. You guys were one of the first on the scene to get them out there(well legitimately). Anyway, on to the problem I have with your post.

    Main thing I have to ask you guys, where is there a problem with this? Why do you need the most uber gear, if raids are not your thing? It isn’t like you are gonna need the extra stats since you don’t like doing the raid content, anyway. The only thing I could see from this is the armor may look cooler coming from those type encounters. How will it really effect your game play though?

    Now if this effected PvP, then we would have a serious problem. Since the equipment is separate for the two, or supposedly is, then this want change that end of the game.

    Pretty much this just caters to those type who do enjoy raids. Don’t let this effect you guys, because it really has no baring on what is fun to you.

    If you indeed do not like raiding, then the only reason you have is the looks. I guess that is where you will have to make a decision if looks are that important to you. Personally, as long as I look semi-cool, I really don’t give a damn about having the most uber looking gear.

    Anyway, you guys do your thing and let the other clowns do theirs.

    I guess now I have to know, how does not having this gear really effect you guys? Ponder that for a bit and lemme know.

    BTW, I’m not into raids myself… 😉

  • @ SlippyC
    Main thing I have to ask you guys, where is there a problem with this? Why do you need the most uber gear, if raids are not your thing? It isn’t like you are gonna need the extra stats since you don’t like doing the raid content, anyway. The only thing I could see from this is the armor may look cooler coming from those type encounters. How will it really effect your game play though?

    Now if this effected PvP, then we would have a serious problem. Since the equipment is separate for the two, or supposedly is, then this want change that end of the game.

    -This is exactly why we dont want raiding to ruin the gaming for us who dont want to play, read the post, read the IGN article it pretty much says the best gear comes from raiding which translates into only the raiders who spend countless hours grinding away repetitive dungeons for a 1 in 100 loot drop (I.E. the casual has no chance to get) then they in turn go out and dominate pvp then this becomes a problem.

    Theres nothing stated in any MMO that casuals and non raiders should be penalized for not taking part in ONE aspect of a game, imagince if you will that if I was to design a game that has the following end game design: In order to get a chance to complete any raid a person in said raid needs to kill 100 (hypothetical) Real life players in a certain zone that is only accessible by gaining ranks in pvp mini games. You think PvE’ers woukld be upset about this? hell yea they would cause just like them us PvP’ers only play for pvp. An occasinal raid is fine (i.e. DaoC style) but it wasnt necessary and you didnt have to kill the same dragon of doom 389756847 times and losing all aspects of having a realistic encounter just to play another part of the gamers Endgame design.

    PvE is fine but any time you mix PvE requirements to compete in a PvP enviornment you have what we all here detest in a MMO. but thats my 2c.

  • Zederok answered it but I’ll answer you SlippyC. It’s not about having the best gear. It’s all about being able to compete in a pvp centric game. When PvE raiding becomes a requirement for the best gear then those who are not interested in raiding will not have gear that compares to the raiders. That means that I must raid to maintain that comparable level of competition which means I must alter my playstyle.

    @kmxs: The time to speak up and have a voice is before the game is released with the potential for these problems, not after. It’s a lot easier to speak up and have something changed while a game is in development than it is for a game to patch something out. I would rather jump to conclusions and be wrong than be quiet and be right. Wouldn’t you?

  • About raiding gear, it would be better if raid gear could not be used for PvP. Let the raid gear stay in PvE. Simply as that. I am going to play this game, I will enjoy it for awhile, then move on. I had enough with WoW and not going to experience the same crap. As soon as the game gets ridiculously unbalanced like in WoW, I axe my subscription and move on.

  • Guys, I realized something after I posted this. 😛

    For some reason I have been thinking all this time that gear from PvE didn’t effect PvP. After I posted this and started thinking about it, I realized that had only been stated over in WaR.

    Awww man this sucks if this is so!!!

    There could be a very simple fix for this too. Just have it when you were in PvP zone that all stats from armor were removed. All PvP would be calculated off base stats. Hmm, that has a problem too though; resists. Actually this still may not be a bad idea, seems like it would be easier to balance the classes for PvP if they didn’t have to worry about differing resists.

    Yea, I guess this does bother me too. What is the exact info on this? Are there caps in PvP areas or are there just to many unknowns?

  • Welcome to the dark side SlippyC. 😉

    There are too many unknowns. All we know is what we read in this article. PvE gear impacts PvP.

  • I don’t know what brainchild came up with this bright idea, but hopefully it will have very low caps for all stats.

    How could Funcom go botch something this obvious up?

    God, errr Funcom, have mercy on us all!!! 🙁

  • Hi there everyone

    My person:

    I am a ‘Raiding Treadmill’ veteran over at ol’ World of Warcraft. Endgame raiding in WoW has been successfully CASUALIZED. Tokens for flasks (2h death-proof raidbuffs) drop of raid-instance trashmobs. Token system for gear-sets. Eliminating mandatory epic quest lines for instance admittance.

    That beeing said, we’ve done all of our progress before casualizing. Currently we are working on the ‘twin eredar’ encounter in sunwell. It’s the last available encounter at this time. I am confident, that we will beat them soon. ‘Content Clear’ once again.

    The thing is, my raid isn’t hardcore at all. Most of the players are ‘hardcore casuals’. We are about 35 players all in all. An estimated ten of us qualify as ‘hardcore’ every single day players. Me beeing one of ’em.

    Our raid leader loves competitive raiding. But due to having a girlfriend and a career, he did see his raiding needs suffer.

    So he came up with the following concept. Having only 2 days of raiding a week. 19 PM to 01 AM. Every monday and thursday night. 100% raid attendance mandatory. Exceptions are accepted for valid reasons, such as family matters or work and study necessities.

    That’s all the commitment it takes, to be successfull in endgame PvE these days. It’s like any hobby out there. You need to commit to be successful. I believe this to be a very reasonable commitment to be a competitive PvE player.

    We are very successfull in this way. We’ve beaten every encounter in the game shortly after the top hardcore raids have done it. We have all maxed out our PvE gear. We have earned our right to brag with timly bosskills.

    Since I am a hardcore player, I have to addmit, I feel betrayed by the tbc-mechanics in place to prevent PvE gear to be competitive in PvP. Even the most basic PvP gear is unreasonably powerful in comparison to maxed out PvE gear. A very casual player can stand his ground against fully decked out PvE-geared players, depending on their class, talent build and personal skills. Even more so, if it’s a group of friends playing a supportive class setup.

    Luckily for ‘Age of Conan’ and ‘Warhammer Online’, ‘World of Warcraft’ is broken. Broken into PvE and PvP. ‘Open World PvP’ is non existent. The contenders both have ‘Open World PvP Gamedesign’ granting the players impact on the games world. A very wholistic approach and hopefully very fun to play. I don’t want such a breakup to made to AoC or WAR, just to cater the casuals, that hardly ever play or stay paying customers for long.

    A MMORPG is all about growth. Every part of the game should nourish the other bits an pieces of it. Why should a hardore player play a game, that denies more growth to his more engaged playstyle?

    It’s the effect gear has on the equasion. Does a fully decked out PvE-geared AoC-player onehit a player of the same class, with lesser equip? If yes, all your whine and cheese is relevant. If not, please help yourselfs to a cookie. As I am not a fortune teller, I won’t pass final judgment just yet.

    All said and done, I WILL QUIT WOW for the following reasons. PvE-raiding starts as a challenge, soon after it turns into a sweet piece of cake. Sadly, eating the same piece of cake over and over again, turns out to be pretty sickening. In addition I feel an odd disconnection to the game. The odd PvE/PvP breakup (denial of PvE gear to be viable in PvP), the loss of realm personality since the battlegrounds are based on realmpools rather than your own realm, the lack of worthwhile open world pvp. It’s like the game has fallen apart into it’s bits and pieces. Playing a broken game is killing me inside. It has to go!

    The PvP rank system sounds perfect to me. It takes commitment to ‘ding’. ‘Dinging’ acts as a PvP-safegame. Your achievement thus far will be secured. There’s no time pressure involved, like back in classic WoW. You will only ‘ding’ to the next rank, if you won a lot more often, than you’ve lost. From a RPG point of view, every time you get beaten, you’re dead. Having a rather harsh penalty will make you act protective of your life. Suicidal Players throwing away their toons life for a mere killing blow is the worst.

    In conclusion:

    I, as a hardcore player, believe the reveald game mechanics to be beneficial to the health of the world of hyboria. By crom! PvE- and PvP-achievements nourish each other. Getting to the highstes PvP rank will be a meaningful achievement. All fears of gear to outweigh skill is premature at this point. Their combat system implies otherwise.

    P.S. I will play WAR. It will be all ‘World of Warcraft’ promised to be. A massivly multiplayer online roleplaying game of high fantasy warfare! WHAAAAGH! I’ll go for the game with the most gamedesign per square inch!

  • I don’t understand why everyone says Bah i’ll go to WAR then. If you think for one minute that WAR isn’t going to have end game raiding your just dilusional.

  • The problem with dying in WOW is that there is no penalty and therefore people don’t use risk assesment when deciding to thump someone.

    I’ve always thought a good penalty would make people think twice. I also think gankers are going to find teams of mercenaries and assasins paid to kill them and keepp killing them.

    It adds a nice edge of reality.

  • Dude, i’ve been in the beta, and the end game system regarding getting gear and having fun at top level is totally different in WAR

  • P.P.S. WOW TBCs life cycle is almost complete. Soon all bosses in sunwell will be unlocked and season 4 will start. TBC will then be feature complete. The gamedesign per square inch is high and very thight. The boss encounters are better than ever. Questing and 5-man dungeons are more compelling than ever. The game mechanics of the battlegrounds have been refined and are more fun than ever. The issues with arena wellfare epics have been solved. Various remaining issues with arena are beeing addressed as we speak. In all fairness. The bits and pieces of WoW are better than ever! But why quit it then?!



    Epic fail!

    I hope casualization doesn’t happen to AoC. It is a very niche product. Funcom is going for the longterm hardcore player. The casual player will pick up AoC for leveling purpuses. AoC promises to be a great leveling experience. A presentation on par with single player rpgs. An action oriented combat system.

    The endgame clearly targets very social players. The most compelling parts of the endgame are large group achievements. Player cities, battle keeps, PvE and PvP raids. Obviously AoC won’t be very casual friendly once you hit endgame. It doesn’t have to. It will turn out to be a paradise for true roleplayers and keep siege fanatics – hopefully.

    I will wait for the NDA to drop. I am sure, I will find a lot of very opionionated people sharing their highlights and concerns. If the quality of the content is right, I will play AoC ’til WAR open beta hits. Heck, who knows?! Maybe AoC strikes me to be better suited for my playstyle than WAR. Who am I to judge before having my way with both of them sexy young things? ;D

  • @Keen

    “The time to speak up and have a voice is before the game is released with the potential for these problems, not after. It’s a lot easier to speak up and have something changed while a game is in development than it is for a game to patch something out. I would rather jump to conclusions and be wrong than be quiet and be right. Wouldn’t you?”

    I understand what your saying here Keen but your being premature in your statements. The system Conan is using can be the best system available for MMORPGS, its how they handle that system, its the things they have left unsaid that will make or break it.

    Think about this. If WoW raids became prestigious again, tons of new content and the best gear in the game, but instead of that gear being the entire game, it didn’t have as much impact on your character as your skill talent setup. Sure Funcom has said the best gear comes from raiding, it needs to, but at the same time they also have said gear isn’t as much of an impact in Conan.

    If WoW got a major graphics overhaul to be up to date that you might have to turn the graphics down on, but even turned down look better then before.

    If WoW changed their combat system to be more dynamic like a n FPS demanding more of a players ability rather then auto-attacking.

    Keep in mind WoW is a completely different game then when it started. And Conan is starting with all of WoW’s current glory “now” but, with better graphics, PVE/PVP character control, and trimming off the bad ideas but keeping the best ones. This is “not” a bad thing. WoW is almost perfect but misses the mark, you don’t need to re-invent the whole game genre just to try and show people what game it isn’t. The genre is an awsome one and the best games within it are the ones that take the most from the ones before it, and improve them.

    WoW really didn’t come with any new ideas, a few, but it was a great game. With looking at the way they are handling PVP, it doesn’t look like Funcom is catering to easy-mode casuals. So why should we assume the same out of PVE?

    The biggest thing that hurt me in WoW was the level cap increase, in a game genre that I play because of gradual building and character advancement, TBC ultimately erased all previous accomplishments before it and started WoW 2.0 that anyone starting the day it came out had pretty close to the same chance to achieve as the people playing it years before it. The all terrible “contantly better items” got the finger pointed at it when really at the end of the day itemization upgrade and new content dealing with it is the way it should be. And eventually, as with all MMORPG’s those items are going to play more and more of a role, with more and more impact on the game experience.

    So if by the time, 2 years down the road my character isn’t going to smash the hell out of someone who “just” hit lvl cap, then what is the draw to play? If that mechanic didn’t exist why would we play this game for an “extended” period of time. Rather it would only last as long as your average non-persistant world game that comes out.

    I have to strongly agree with WoWtoWar here, at my most hardcore I raided 11 hours a week in WoW and we were the top guild on the server. Is that really a lot to ask to have the best of the best on a server? I don’t think so. The problem with WoW wasn’t that it had a treadmill for gear, MMORPG’s are just big treadmills all the way through in almost any aspect anyway. It was that everything was too easy to get, and there is so far no indication of that in what they have said about Conan’s raiding and pvp content systems.

    So I agree, now is the time to speak up, but its only the time to speak if you have something to say. You’ve made assumptions about something and its just your “best guess”. You have a lot of people reading your site, and it has impact. 90% of the responses here remind me of a friend I have who is blown with the wind on every opinion that is thrown out there and most of the time these opinions come from people who are making an estimation or guess when in actuality the people who play the game don’t feel that way.

    For the people saying DAOC raids were fine, I beg to differ but the rewards were so pathetic from DAOC raiding that “nobody raided” which is why it didnt have such an impact. DAOC was a great idea that severely missed the mark in end-game PVP which was easily proven by the 3 – 4 complete PVP system remakes that happened in the games lifespan. The expansion was a complete waste of everyones time and they were never able to be more then a stop-gap filler mmo until the next best came out. People played DAOC because it was the only option for PVP, not because it was a game model others should consider using and that it offered anything new to the genre. I enjoyed my time in DAOC, but like everyone else when I hit level gap I got the best overcharged crafted gear and almost immediately became bored after a few weeks of a neverending grindy lame PVP system that had little to no recourse for death, and crappy rewards.

  • @kmxs: I don’t think it’s premature to respond to a statement like this when it’s being said only three weeks before release:

    “If you want to get the best armor and weapons in Age of Conan, you’re going to have to raid…”

    We are almost exactly THREE weeks from release. This isn’t premature and it’s not jumping to conclusions to take a counter position to this statement. I feel that raiding for the best gear in the game – gear that will be equal to the BEST pvp gear that only a few people will have – is wrong. I feel now is the time to say so. To be quiet now would be rolling over and accepting this. If I voice my opinion at the very least I can say that from the beginning I was against it. I’ve taken the “wait and see” road a few times and it comes back to haunt me.

    I disagree that the best gear should come from raids. I disagree that AoC is starting with WoW’s “Current glorY” because it’s using the system that WoW USED TO USE. It’s using Honor system version 1.0 concepts.

    We simply disagree and that’s fine.

  • @ Keen

    It ain’t WoW honor system version 1.0. Time ain’t of the essence. I hit rank 13 back in the day with my pvp twink. I had to play 24/7, since all pvp activity by the own faction was compared. Their was a ranking of who made the most honor points during the week. Players got rewarded ranking points according to that ‘who scored the most honor this week’ competition. Every week players lost a certain percentage of their ranking points. So the higher your ranking was, the more honor you had to score each week to progress further in ranking. Beeing a competitive system, you had to score more honor, than your competitors. This was the reason, why you had to play 24/7 for a month or two, to reach pvp-rank 13 or 14. You had to make at least top 3 honor/week over a period of three weeks to get from rank 13 to rank 14. The wow honor system 1.0 was sick! I had people falling asleep on their keyboards. That was one hell of sick laugh in teamspeak. So the AoC PvP rank system is pretty tame in comparison. As long as you keep your kill/death ration better than 3:1 you progress. Every time you get a rank-up, you rank up for good. You keep on ‘dinging’ as long as you keep winning. That’s fair game to me.

  • I had a rank 12. I know how it worked. 😉

    I’m referring to the PvP gear being only available to the few and being about as good as the PvE raid gear. PvE Raid gear was more accessible and heavily influenced the outcome of PvP fights.

    The finer details are different but the overview and outcome are the same. PvPing for your rewards will not be as viable as PvEing for them thus the average player must PvE for their rewards to be competitive.

    Fairly simple to understand.

  • @keen:
    Pre (WOW) TBC PvP kit meant something. People got alot of respect for having warlord. I have no respect for people with S1, S2 or S3. You can pay penuts for a chinese farmer to grind you your S3, then you can go play and win with your EMO kit.

    TBC is a boring game and the arena system limited to a few classes.

    In my opinion, anything that is even slightly more balanced will get my vote (I mean my money).

    And 2v2, 3v3, come on, be serious, thats just for warriors and druids.

    I created a 5v5 elemental only team and we won 75% on the first day. Don’t tell me we had skill on our side. It was my first and only day in arean. We didnt win on skill or kit, we won on imbalance.

    I’m terribly bored and terribly frustrated.

    All the negative things you say about AoC are to me an insignificant microscopically small fragmant of all the things that are current wrong with WOW.

    I’ve ordered my copy, if I like it and its slightly better that WOW I’ll be dropping the WOW subscription.

    Maybe a little competition may finally force the WOW developers to balance the game. If they don’t I really hope the entire WOW client base migrates over to AoC.

  • @Senator: I hope you don’t feel I’m trying to spread negativity about AoC. Heck, I’m going to be playing the game. It’s just an unfortunate circumstance that Funcom has revealed, multiple days in a row, things that I dislike about mmorpgs in general. As for WoW… believe me when I say you’re currently talking to someone who can’t stand WoW and all that it has become. You’re preaching to the choir. 😉

  • The problem here isn’t that we have differing opinions Keen. Its that your not offering any supportive ideas for your own. If raids did not have the best gear in the game, no one would do them as they are the hardest thing in the game to organize and succeed at in general.

    I agree that this system has been done to death and for the most in lousy fashion at best. What I am saying is that this system isn’t bad, its a medium, how they choose to use it can be good or bad though. If you don’t like raiding as being so important then I would say Warhammer is deffinately going to be more up your ally, AoC is being marketed as the complete package without an extreme focus on either side. WoW tried to do that but when they created the major seperation between PVE and PVP they made the PVP gear too easy to obtain and it made the raiders feel like their time spent collecting gear was semi-fruitless because they wanted it to be useful against other players. This of course is getting down to player opinion and not necessarily a right or wrong, rather a gameplay choice.

    What I am certain of is that funcom wants AoC to be a raiding game, and with that said raiding being the most difficult thing in general to organize because of the large groups of people involved with also keeping track of loot and so forth makes it a major burden and the rewards need to be pretty heavy to hold the interest and keep people coming back.

    So as an asnwer to the WoW system where I would say in the earlier days raiding worked rather well, but eventually started to feel moot with the inherant giving away of free epics in almost every other outlet, made for a watered down system.

    Conan is going to “try” to make PVP difficult, as difficult to get as the Marshal/Warlord gear but taking out the timesink factor. I never made Marshal myself, but the concept of the few people having the awesome gear was pretty cool, it made for “server” heroes of sorts. Back in the day when there were just a few running around and before cross server BG’s with the community of your server it was a much more immersive feeling where you could make a name for yourself. I suppose I as a player miss that, seeing the heroes in the game and wanting to be one, but with the loss of community and gear becoming too easy to obtain it just felt like fastfood-MMOing.

    So what I am saying through all of this, and I hope you don’t think I am just trying to argue; whatever system they choose to go with, how they handle it in balance and difficulty is what is going to be the determining factor in how immersive and fun it is to play in. I just want them to do it right, if they want this or that system, i’ve probably already played it in another, and many games have made good systems look bad. IE: lineage 2 was a mock UO with 3d graphics but the game played like a bad day the office with a stack of paperwork and no end in sight.

    It is only 3 weeks to release, but MMO’s start somewhere, and as long as that somewhere is polished and fun to be part of, its what they have acknowledged and accomplished at the end of the first year running that really matters. Of course this depending that their release having a good solid year of fun gameplay while all the kinks are worked out. So far though even the best MMO’s have gotten worse and worse as time went on trying to cater to everyone and pleasing no one, just creating a catchall game that did’nt really fill the need of any single style within the MMO genre.

    EQ gave me a feeling of epic back in the day, and then eventually got treadmilled out and watered down, I thought I wouldnt feel that way again because well, I had played that system into the ground. But during WoW after killing nefarion and entering AQ and seeing twin emps fall for the first time, standing in front of patchwerk and so forth I felt that impressive nature again only to be watered out by cry-baby gamers who didn’t have the hubris to “compete” and wanted everything easy. If they keep this old system in Conan its a sure fire risk free way of doing it, and something we’ve all played before, but it doesn’t mean it can’t be fun if they create enough challenge and reward, and keep the market from becoming flooded by too-easy knockoff versions of the same items that are super hard to get via other means. Raiding is fun, but if “you” don’t think its fun, you shouldn’t get to excited about AoC, they never claimed to be a PVP based MMO, that’s Warhammers boast.

  • You’re writing mini novels here Kmxs! You’re killin’ me!

    I’ve offered several alternatives. I think you just don’t like them or disagree with them. And that’s absolutely fine! 😛

    Solution 1.) Raiding should not reward players with gear capable of influencing the outcome of PvP. Instead, it should reward players with cosmetic changes and a dynamic experience.

    Solution 2.) PvP gear should not just be available to the best of the best, but to everyone who works for it.

    Solution 3.) Take the emphasis off of gear and place it on character development and player skill.

    Those are just a few solutions I can think up off the top of my head.

  • @Cantwait

    “(I like the part asking if ANYONE likes that model, despite the millions of people who play WoW)”

    And of those millions, how many have seen Illidan? 5%?

  • That is a very valid question. What rewards and benefits should hardcore players, be it guild players and/or endgame raiders, be able to obtain? I see people doing raid dungeons once at best for only ‘+style’ trophies and bragging rights.

    Also I don’t see how endgame PvE can progress without rewarding gear improvements. I know for a fact, that AoC endgame raiding will be a progression in tiers. There will be several tier 1 encounters. The itemization made in tier 1 encounters will enable the raidgroup to progress to the harder encounters of tier 2 and so forth. Endgame PvE can’t be done without substancial gear upgrades along the way. So having PvE raiding beeing part of AoC, this are the facts you have to deal with.

    Blizzard did address this problem. They did CASUALIZE PvP by turing PvE gear into an invalid choice in PvP. They broke the game in two. I hate it. I hate that I have to change my gear from elitist PvE Gear to casual PvP Gear, if I wan’t to be competitive in PvP. It just doesn’t feel right, that an AFK-Honor-Leechers’ wellfare epics force me to ignore my PvE achievements and dress up like a non-elitist commoner. PvE- and PvP-gear are no longer interchangeable with each other. It’s just plain wrong. The bits and pieces are better than ever, but it’s just one hell of a broken game.

    In what manner would you address this problem?

  • While the raiding might seem the same in AoC with 24man raids instead of 25man they are a world apart imho.

    First the combat system makes playing AoC an absolute blast and the raid instances are also not as long as the wow raids. A wow raid can last 3-5 hours while one in AoC took around 1-2 hours on beta.

    As for gear they are of couse important in AoC as it is in any mmog but not as important. They do not make or break a fight like they can in wow.

  • Oh and there were no respawning trash. Thank God for that. Trash from ssc/tk and hyjal are still haunting me in my nightmares..

  • Thanks for a well written article Keen, you opinions on the whole raiding/hardcore pvp scene mirrors my own 😉 Sad news really that funcom went this route with PVP.

    I as well will be getting this game, still have to try it out, but will be very very ready to jump back to LOTRO 😉 And this fall: War is coming 😉 Waaaaaaagh.

  • Thanks for the nice write-ups as I’m slowly learning and warming up to AoC. I follow your point that raid gears beneficial to pvp will put those who don’t raid at a distinct disadvantage.

    Having said that, while not a fan of progressive raids myself (been there, done that with Wow, LoTro, and EQ2), I’m actually looking forward to raids in AoC.

    While I have very little information on AoC raids, it seems that FC has “learned” from other mmos and make the raids more reasonable. Time constraint is a big issue for casual players to raid effectively, and more often than not raids in other games I’ve played are static (translation…boring). Hopefully raids are done well enough in AoC so that even pvp and casual fans can enjoy the content. Much longevity for the game if FC somehow manages to balance this to suit both the hardcore and casual players.

    If anyone with first hand experience can elaborate more on AoC raids it would be helpful.

  • HARDCORE PLAYERS = most competitive players with more time invested

    Rewards: Access to best gear.

    CASUAL PLAYERS = less competitive players with less time invested.

    Rewards: Access to gear of lesser quality.

    People play MMOs for many reasons. But I am sure that many like to be competitive, otherwise their game would not be “fun”.

    I am going to run topless, so I pass on the chest gear piece .

  • Keen Said: “You’re writing mini novels here Kmxs! You’re killin’ me!

    I’ve offered several alternatives. I think you just don’t like them or disagree with them. And that’s absolutely fine! 😛

    Solution 1.) Raiding should not reward players with gear capable of influencing the outcome of PvP. Instead, it should reward players with cosmetic changes and a dynamic experience.

    Solution 2.) PvP gear should not just be available to the best of the best, but to everyone who works for it.

    Solution 3.) Take the emphasis off of gear and place it on character development and player skill.

    Those are just a few solutions I can think up off the top of my head.”

    Yah I know I write long but I hate it when people misinterpret what I say, so I am detailed =) Your solution 1 makes raiding moot, and to any hard core raider who’s ever raided anything ever in the past 12 years of MMO you won’t be attracting them to this game at all. That solution basically throws in raiding as an afterthought and won’t be content that gets explored.

    Solution 2 creates an all too easy gain and doesn’t classify players by skill level at all within its system. This system allows for every player to be equal at all times and rewards time spent rather then ability (I cannot stand that concept). People who play a system like this or desire the MMORPG genre to change into this system should be aware of the many many FPS genre games that fit their needs already and exist within this design. MMORPG’s are about character building and advancement, if i spent years building my character it should show, if I spent years building my character while also making very smart decisions and commiting to a team of people to work together it should show even more.

    Your solution 3 has already been answered, I think they have stated already the lesser impact of gear in Conan, so its kind of moot. But I will add to that and say that over time the gear will have to improve to be better then the last gear, and so you will get stat inflation creating a major importance on having good gear. But as raiders can defeat old content easily, it makes that old content easily available too more casual players. This happens in all mmo’s, look at WoW, once naxx was out everyone and their dog had a BWL group going and it wasnt hard to be part of one to clear it in 4 hours each week, well suited to the casual player being of minimum commitment.

    I don’t know yet why your asking for these things, other then you are either A) a really bad player, or B) have had really bad luck with guilds. I spent the last year leading raids only 11 hours a week, that doesn’t cost a huge amount of comitment from an mmo’r considering the amount of time the average player spends in game. If you feel 11 hours a week is asking too much, this is not necessarily the correct genre of gaming for you. But with that minor time, I could promise you the best of the best raid content gear with plenty of time in between to PVP. Heck even my most hard core PVP’rs (myself included) were generally chomping at the bit for the next raid.

    While doing those raids, and spending another 3 – 4 hours a week in arena we were able to get to top of our server in content, while at the same time I was maintaining a top 5 in our battlegroup for 3’s team.

    Having done that with access to both gear types and sets I felt the seperation between the 2 really took away from the game, as it was more like playing 2 seperate games. Especially with the fact that i was respecing my talents in between each raid so I could PVP.

    Now Conan doesn’t answer this and say it has a solution to this specific type of problem, that is, joining PVP/PVE and making them affect each other more while also leaving each character viable to compete in either by having spent time in 1 of them. What your proposing calls for the opposite of this and already exists largely in WoW where PVE items are meaningless in PVP, that just isn’t what this genre is about. Of course that is my own opinion but I’ve seen a few games come and go since my first 386.

    Honestly when BG’s were more communal and PVP gear was harder to get I found that they were a lot more fun. The biggest problem with them at the time of pre-tbc was that they did not reward skill, so much as time. I am sure you could have both, a shittier set of gear for that of time spent, but the best of the best for skill. Which is what AoC is saying its going to do, it didn’t say unless your lvl 10 you can’t get any gear at all, it said the “best” gear comes from lvl 10.

    The difference in WoW was that after TBC they did fix 1 problem from the old system, which was to create more of a gap between PVP and PVE gear, but this was a problem that was stated by less then half of the community, namely the FPS loving PVP’rs who think they are hard core because of their own hatrad for PVE.

    Do yourself a favour and come to my website, and organize yourselves to join the server my guild is going to, you want minimal time spent PVEing for the gear so you can PVP all day? Then join a guild that’s capable of doing that, in AoC like in all the rest, this is going to rest on the shoulders of the group and how they want to play the game.

    Anyhow, I think with my massive thesis and your limited time to answer my better arguments this conversation is mostly done, you’ve eluded 90% of what I’ve said here and gone on to make short answers that actually “have” been tried in the mmo genre and haven’t worked. And most who play the genre for what it is would agree I think, that raiding needs to matter, its a fantasy rpg after all, and awarding time spent versus the skill and ability of the player is an exercise in stupidity for any self respecting gamer.

    Your asking for WoW, your asking for Guildwars, your asking for games that already exist. AoC looks completely awesome and they are combining more winning elements into a single MMO then any company before it, that is the right path to take, that is the game most of us who have been PVPing since UO and raiding since EQ want to play. Your game already exists, its the fast-food McRaid version of a real MMO”RPG”.

  • I disagree with almost everything you’re saying Kmxs. That’s why my answers are short. I don’t make it my goal on this blog to change people’s minds or to argue out why my opinion is better than yours. The fact remains that this is my blog where I write my opinion for anyone who stops by to read. You’re welcome to disagree, discuss, constructively criticize, worship, or do whatever you please. But I hope you don’t expect me to always reciprocate.

    I am really unsure how you could ever say that I am asking for WoW… that just blows my mind and shows me that you haven’t read much at all of what I am saying. But let’s leave it at that.

    I hope you can agree to disagree and move on. 🙂 I appreciate your comments nonetheless.

  • Your goal was to speak out early and ask for something different, but you’ve made sweeping statements and defended them with… well… nothing. I’ve never seen someone who speaks to the public, with such strong opinions not be willing to “ink-by-the-barrel” it and get dirty breaking down game mechanics and defending their opinions. But after all as you said, it is “your blog”. <– *blink blink*

    Ah well tho, enjoy AoC, I hope were all surprised by this one and really enjoy it, too many let downs over the years of companies who make something good based on previous achievments and just hammer it into the ground with shitty updates, patches, and expansions.

  • Sorry I forget to answer this

    Keen said: “I am really unsure how you could ever say that I am asking for WoW… that just blows my mind and shows me that you haven’t read much at all of what I am saying. But let’s leave it at that.”

    Well for a start, you want a system that doesn’t allow PVE gear to interfere with PVP, that’s WoW. You want time spent of each PVP’r to reward them with the same items the most skilled players get. That’s WoW. You want to be able to PVP without ever having to worry about raiding unless you “feel” like it…. That’s WoW. Welcome to Warcraft, why did you quit?

  • Because World of Warcraft, for two years pre TBC, was NOT like that. World of Warcraft was exactly like Age of Conan is currently being designed to be and the ‘masses’ responded negatively to it and Blizzard changed it. I quit because of it!

    There are also several things about WoW that I still do not like. Namely raiding treadmills and thoughtless PvP.

  • I was also disappointed to read

    “If you want to get the best armor and weapons in Age of Conan, you’re going to have to raid”

    I agree with you, I’m not looking for another raiding treadmill in a game. If it turns out that Warhammer will have more emphasis on high end PvP, I’ll gladly bail out on AoC

  • “If you want to get the best armor and weapons in Age of Conan, you’re going to have to raid”

    Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. Back to pre-BC WoW, the way it should be.

  • Not worked up, just like to debate the finer points of mmo mechanics and give my own opinions =) As you have probably found its not easy to find folks that dabble so deeply in systems with the experience of many mmo’s to be able to get a good debate going. Doesn’t seem like your to interested in debating some of my points but then I can’t blame you.

    Honestly most of this comes out of my boredom between MMO’s trying to fill the hours while not playing DOTA for the 50 millionth time. And I don’t necessarily think the game you are craving is a bad game, I just have yet to see a pure PVP based system work and I am not completely convinced that it can in this genre without becoming monotonous and repetative. Planetside was the sort of game that fits more closely with a true pvp mmo that even had pseudo-rpg mechanics. I really enjoyed it for a while, but it didn’t hold my interest after a while because I am just recapturing the same stuff over and over, and even though the battlefield changes the gameplay offers very little variety.

    This is all more then likely why in my last MMO experience although I did PVP in a very competative manner, I spent most of my time raiding and didn’t mind it, maybe I’m getting old, I dunno but I like the PVP progression and the struggle with a large group of people to defeat well thought out AI. Thanks Foror/Tigole.

    There is no gaurentee on any system these days and in another writing you did I fell quite in line with your sentement when you said “fool me once..” you know the rest =)

    I hope Conan and War are both great games, I doubt that will be the case but you never know. From what I’ve seen a system like Conan’s has been able to survive the test of time to make the company enough money to keep creating content quickly. War’s system has been tried with DaoC and ended up with a lot of redundancy, and it sadly seems they are making War more and more like DaoC so I am giving up following it until closer to release when instead of hearing some guy yell over a podcast in a foreign accent about how excited he is about a game system that may not even make it into release, I would rather just have a succinct explanation with a nice gameplay video showing me in all its glory.

    Also I am much a graphics whore as you are, and the one thing that really bothers me with graphics is nice character models matched up with horrendous character animations. Good character animation ie: DaoC & WoW can carry a game for years with half assed models and textures. EQ2 and Vanguard failed miserably in this aspect and all their pretty models end up looking like a wax museum gone bad. From what I have seen of the War/AoC gameplay video’s I am much more impressed with the polished animations in AoC. I look at War so far and get that pretty model, stiff animation feel. I guess I have some pretty high standards but I last played WoW and the animations in that were fantastic.

    Anyway I’ve wall-o-texted you again so I’ll just cut myself short, no hard feelings Keen I am not worked up I just prefer people validate their arguments in detail so I can learn from them, rather then giving short answers that you hear so often from fanboys who would be happy with a Gummybears MMO so long as it wasn’t too difficult for them. Now, you wouldn’t want to be mistaken for one of them now would you?! =P Here’s hoping AoC is good for all our sakes, 3.5 years is too long to wait for another flop.

  • Dang, i’ve never been so pumped up for a game and let down all in the same week. I hate raiding treadmills… hate them.

    I know I’m probably in the minority… but I’m just not a big fan of requiring PvE raids in order to be competitive in PvP.

  • Keen, I decided to stop reading your blog after your multiple errors in your premature “review” of the PvP weekend, but this article was actually served up to me as a “news” article on, which is quite sad.

    This is not news. It’s not even correct. Let’s run down the points.

    1) Beta testers have been saying for quite a while that gear has very little effect in PvP. This is not WoW. A person 10 levels away from you is a relatively even fight. A person 20 levels away is doable. This is currently how it is in beta. Gear has never been used as a reason for someone winning a fight, ever. So all this argument about how you’ll HAVE to raid to be competitive in PvP is basing all your assumptions on how WoW worked. This isn’t WoW.

    2) You’re missing the point of the PvP xp system. The whole REASON that you lose 2-3X more PvP xp than you gain when you kill someone is that your PvP level is based on skill, not how long you’ve played. If you kill 10 people but don’t die at all because you’re badass, then you’ve got much more PvP who’s killed 10 times more people than you but dies a lot. So it becomes skill over time spent. It’s entirely in place so you CAN get a lot of PvP XP in a short amount of time if you know what you’re doing.

    3) They’ve noted that PvP gear will be better for PvP than PvE raid gear. IGN’s statement of “The best gear will be from raids” is I think of their own invention. Funcom has said many times that expert crafted gear will be very competitive with Raid gear because it’s the only gear that can be slotted with gems and given those bonuses.

    The summary is, for people who want to Raid and really enjoy PvE, they can get really good PvE equipment from raiding. For those who really love PvP and want every edge, they get a reward for their performance in PvP in the way of PvP items. For those who don’t want to worry about PvP levels or Raiding, there is crafted items with gemstones. For those who don’t care about any of this, equipment doesn’t matter all that much in PvP, so they can just ignore it altogether.

    Really, I know you have a lack of information because the game isn’t out, but jumping on a few lines of text from a website’s preview, extrapolating all sorts of things about how it “ruins the game” is very hyperbolic forum behavior. I’m very sad that this sort of “journalism” was used for a news post on a relatively respectable site like Massively. I’m even more sad to see that 150 posts have gone by with people just jumping off the ship too thinking it’s on fire when in fact someone just burned some bacon in the kitchen.

  • @Keen

    I have to say your views on Hardcore PvE raiding are a bit single-minded.

    Personally i thought the fun in end game raiding was about playing with your guild with the side bonus of loot.

    Also if it wasnt so hard to aquire end game loot then the satisfaction of getting it would be next to none. I would be pretty gutted if everyone just walked around with the best equipment. Dont you like the feeling of power over other players when you have the better equipment? If so im afraid easy loot will only end in tears for any player that enjoys smashing another players face in with their shiny new warhammer =P

    Also dont take it personally but Darthus has a point. Well points…

  • I find it utterly amazing how many people have been convinced that the only endgame content that is possible these days is raiding. They won’t even humor the thought of other systems or ideas. Eagerly they wait to jump on the treadmill with their “friends” to earn “phat loots.”

    By their own admission (see Cerwaru) if it wasn’t for loot they wouldn’t get any satisfaction. Sadly, I have to look back on days in MUDs and the early MMORPG’s to find a time when people weren’t so driven by greed. But let the masses into a genre that was about escapism from those said masses and now we see the fruit it bares.

    I’m starting to think important things like lore, exploration and adventure just don’t mean much to the e-peen crowd, it’s all about the gimme gimme gimme.

  • @Cerwaru: Ofcourse my views are single-minded… this is where I write MY opinion, heh. I thought that was pretty clear… my blog – my opinion. I’m not going to write or defend a perspective that I disagree with or dislike. I’m going to write from my perspective. I’m baffled by some of you people. I really am.

    @Erosenin: I agree.

  • Heh, reading this blog, and skimming through the last several responses, I have the exact same feelings and sentiments as you guys.

    Raiding got old REEEEAL quick in WoW. I couldn’t stand the idea of grinding countless mobs and quests at the end game, and that “mechanic” just kept getting worse with the Daily Quests they implemented right around when I quit. More like “Day Job.” Most importantly, I went through 4 different Guilds that fell apart just because of Raids.

    For me, PvP was the only real enjoyable end-game content, but even that required grinding Battlegrounds that you didn’t like, or competing against people that had an obvious advantage because of their end-game raiding gear.

    WAR is the only game that sounds like they’re going to do it all right. You can level through PvP, the gear you get in PvP is equal to, or better than the PvE gear. The largest PvE “raids” that I’ve heard about are only 14 people. Player Quests award the best gear, and are pretty much free for all. I really can’t wait for that game… I just hope the AoC grind fest will keep my interest for the next few months till I can enjoy a game that will hopefully do it right and cater to the more Casual crowd.

  • Lets face it the Raiding Treadmill is how they keep us paying $15.00 a month for 3 years.

    Also…don’t forget “Crafted Gear” is supposed to be some of the best gear in the game.

  • […] Wouldn’t it make more sense if *everyone* was competitive? If everyone could reasonably grind out gear solo? Then you’d have people raiding and pvping for prestige. That prestige is reward enough. There’s no need to tie your ability to beat a specific dungeon or a specific player to your gear that you can only get through a horrific grind.” – Hexx […]

  • I wanted to argue the comment that ‘millions’ of WoW players raid.

    One of the early BlizzCons Blizzard made the mistake of revealing the number of raids that occur on a typical weekend. Players were smart enough to figure out it counted for roughly 10% of the total population.

    Why do you think Blizzard was moved away from 40 man raids?
    Raids would get minimized even more except Kaplan and Chilton are in charge and hardcore EQ raiders. WoW will continue to cater to raiders, until another game can come along and offer the majority of their player base who DON’T raid another option.

    It’s laughable to see some here claiming they raid but aren’t hardcore. BY DEFINITION, if you raid YOU ARE HARDCORE. You make up the VERY LIMITED percentage of the playerbase in a guild big enough to engage in raiding and YOU ARE THE MINORITY.

    Age of Conan will only prove this further.

  • First of all, the experience lost from dying is PvP level experience and you cannot de-level. This gives EVERYONE a chance at eventually reaching the top, it will just take a little longer if they don’t have the skill. Also I read in one of the recent interviews on the AoC community site that PvP levels will be more of a ‘title’. Just because your PvP level is 6 doesn’t mean you’ll lose to the guy that’s level 10, it just shows that hes been around longer and has skill.

    As for raiding, there’s PvPers and there’s PvE’ers…PvP if you want to PvP because there’s specific PvP gear that’s great in PvP but not necessarily the best in PvE and vice versa.

  • Dunno mate, yer take on the subject is flawed as all heck.
    Honestly MMOs have been, at least since meridian, a Time Investment=Results.

    That cannot be changed.
    As far as “raid gear” vs “crafter” vs “the guy that invest 30 mins and expects to be as good as the guy that learns how to be effective”

    Gear is different from what you are used to in other games.
    There is no +1700 HP chest, the equipment benefits are there, but there is no humongous difference in between say an assassin wearing dual Spider Fangs vs a guy using 2 crafted daggers gemmed correctly.

    Then again, thats part of the “the guy that knows what he is doing” vs “common idiot that things hes gonna do well with a set of +physical invul VS a caster”.

    In any case, this is just another case of “WAR>AoC”
    Also, if yer looking at WAR as not a threadmill…well lemme put it like this, expect playing an oldschool Alterac Valley grind, but extend it for as long as you play, and make the factor of “what side has the most healers?” be the determinant factor for your success in that game.

    I don’t expect AoC to change the landscape of gaming radically, nobody can do that nowadays anyways, I’m just content with the fact that I can chop some idiot’s head and then talk to him. That and No elfs/Orcs/etc.

  • […] whether or not I want to give them any money. I was extremely dismayed to read some of the latest AoC posts over at Keen and Graev’s this past week. It sounds like AoC is just another fantasy MMO based entirely on levels and gear […]

  • Dang.

    I’m probably just beating a dead horse here, but I thought I’d try and throw in some new thoughts.

    For one – why so much hate against people who like to raid? Even what you dub “treadmill” raiding isn’t really what you make it out to be – an endless grind for “no reason.” There are reasons for it. People like to see content that they know only a small % of the population will see, or at least being the first to do so.

    And yes, gear plays a part because the game has to be structured – you shouldn’t be able to just walk into Dungeon D and kill everything in it without doing Dungeon A,B, and C first in terms of progression… just really doesn’t make sense. And gear is the way to limit that short of level requirements or “attunement” quests.

    Anyway, I just think it’s stupid that you believe PvP is superior to PvE and yet fail to accept that other people might have other opinions 😛

    And yes, I understand this is “your” blog. And honestly I’m rather disappointed that you would have a blog as interesting and honestly well put together as this, and yet stay firmly rooted in your opinions and don’t even deign to reply with WHY you might feel the way you do when questioned. But as kmxs, I also have fun trying to provoke people 😉

    Speaking of kmxs, this:

    “Now will add to this last one and say that the handling of loot hasn’t been done all that well in the past. In that it takes a group far to long to get “everyone” the gear they need in order to move on past that content, it no longer becomes a question of skill but time. What should happen is that the faster you are able to kill a boss, the more loot it drops, ie: you shorten the time it takes to kill him by 10 or 20 seconds and groups won’t have to spend 3 months raiding the same place to clean it out.”

    Was just about the best idea ever and I can’t believe it doesn’t exist yet (as far as I know). That would really make “end game raiding” so much better.

    Moving on though, another thought I’d like to put to you – honestly I don’t see why people get so worked up about PvE gear working for PvP, or vice versa, AS LONG AS IT REMAINS BALANCED. I think WOW!toWAR totally hit the nail on the head here. The reason why WoW is/was failing is because of such a distinction between PvP and PvE. Either PvE gear was too good and OP in PvP, or now the case where you have to have entirely separate sets of gear to participate in either realm.

    I think it’s ridiculous for a game to separate the two genres, if you are going to have them coexist, they need to be symbiotic. I don’t mind PvE gear being GOOD for PvP – and the other way around works fine too. Assuming that the same level of commitment/skill/what-have-you is required to get either piece of gear.

    Tell me truly, if the most elite PvP gear was OP in PvE, would you complain? Probably not, because somehow you feel that winning against PCs makes you better than someone who organizes a grand-scale operation to win against some AI.

    I really don’t see why the two realms have to be separate. If I put in 20 hours a week and team up with 20+ other players to get some gear, then it should be useful no matter what I am doing in game. Likewise, if I spend those same 20 hours PvPing my arse off, and am really good at it, then I think that gear should also be good all across the board.

    I think what you are really afraid of is when PvE gear is imbalanced towards PvP – as you are comparing it to “old” or “vanilla” WoW. In old WoW (pre TBC) the raiding gear was vastly superior to anything else that existed in game. This meant that, yes, if you wanted to easily dominate PvP you had to PvE.

    However, it doesn’t have to be that way at all. If the gear you obtained from PvE was equal (just slightly different in looks/whatever) to what you obtained in PvP, then what difference does it make where it came from? In the end, skill will still decide the outcome, and you can obtain the gear whichever method you feel better suits your playstyle.

    Well sorry for the novel. But I think there’s a lot of poorly thought opinions in this thread concerning PvP vs PvE. I don’t think the two need to be, or should be, separated if you want to have a long-lived and very interesting and varied game.

  • I too wish they’d implement a ‘Guild Wars’ approach where PvP & PvE items are equal in stats so that all character’s PvP on equal footing.

    PvP items should also be easily accessible (although high-end PvP gear may have unique appearance).

    The idea that one must run the grind-treadmill just to get the gear necessary to be competitive in PvP does not gel well with the majority of players who want to be competitive but do not have time for the grind-treadmill.

    Guild Wars has a vibrant PvE trade market -which proves that having PvP & PvE gear sharing the same stats but different appearance does not in any way diminish player’s desire for high-end PvE gear -it simply means PvP is based on skill not gear.

  • @keen

    You could at least try to look at everything from both sides of the fence but i guess your just going to continue picking out every bad thing you dont like about it and basically put people off buying the game.

    I also find it a bit pointless about mentioning simple, expected glitches that you would get at the start of any new MMORPG that you know will be fixed sooner rather than later.

    I must say i began to like this blog when i realised it was good insight on the game rather than a “i dont like this, that and the next thing” fest.

    Though of course it is your blog.

  • MMORPGs = time sink, it’s as simple as that. Stop complaining about how end game stuff can only be gotten with huge amounts of time, because the second they give everybody easy access to all the great stuff the game is completely pointless.

    There’s really not much of a way to implement great gear without “treadmills”. It would be like trying to create a FPS where people with 20 fps and 200 ping can compete with 75 fps 20 ping people. Multiplayer games aren’t “fair” (read: don’t appease all the noobs/casuals/people with garbage pcs) if they’re worth playing.

  • Soooo dum I hate playing with even 5 players very often one of the 5:

    is vulgar /immature

    greedy / domeneering

    goes afk / quits

    WHY WOULD I WANT TO PLAY WITH 25 DUMBOS? The chance for a goon is 24 of 24 … soo lame… I do not want to waste time and get stressed in a social way cuz i have to cooperate with dum kidz

    Doood sooo lame I hate WOW raiding the times I stayed in a raid in Kakistan just to get good loot despite IRATTAING CHAT is myriad upon legion

    Lets face it most kidz who play these games are morbid and laike filthy humor … that is fine as I can screen my channels ignore… problem is when I am forced to party with brats to get the good gear

    As tooo WOW welll I now have all EPICS thanks to PVP honor rewards gear good enough to raid with as a DPS warrior still I wish as the MOST BRILLIANT AND WISE SPOKEN guys who said u should have elite type rewards like titles, armor looks style/ or maybe some othe r cosmetic stuff

    Also I ant never seen any better palce than Kakastan CUX I hate IDIOT GUIDLS and I like to tahnk age of conan for ensuring I never will see there ubeer raid dungeons as I hate guilds and groups

    thanks dumbo coana makers barbaros bird chirping peat cutting bog trotting dung burning venison jerking monkey training orally handicapped unpolished unread helot peasant plebeian fodder … I descend to criticize you….

    Yeah I too agree with the original post FORCED raids for Best Gear = disgruntled PHSCO BASEMENT DWELLING UNSOCALIZED GAME ADDICT (just a minute I have to pay the pizza girl – mom can I borrow ur purse I spent my money on Hemorrhoid Cream anon)