The game is very thin when you look at it from the top. For those of us who played in EA, the end-game content that was supposed to come after release is missing and there is really nothing keeping the player interested once they’ve done the “dungeons” (often shallow snooze-fests of “bosses” who are only too easy to kill). The four of us are quitting, take our money and run Funcom. A few parting shots:
- The POI experience made us all 60 but now Funcom is going to nerf it? That only hurts new players trying to level up to match the 10-man guilds in full Silent Legion/Teliths
- Silent Legion armor… what to say? The OUTSTANDING diversity in the various armors made it so your choice of what to wear meant something… until you did the Black Keep.
- PvE is boooooooring, mobs have zero threat to anyone relatively well-geared. Some bosses get staggered and are just time-sinks with no interesting mechanics before you get their key to open another box containing a weapon inferior to those which you can craft, and other bosses have broken collision frames that it makes no sense not to farm the “working” ones to get keys.
- PvP is zero stakes… if I don’t like the way the fight is going I can always just run away. Cool? You will never kill a good player in PvP.
- The main quest line deletes my character. That’s just lazy - There are very few people that delete characters they’ve spent many, many hours on but this is the end-game solution. Let it be known: to win Conan Exiles you have to stop playing it (and never want to come back now that your stuff’s all gone).
Let me be clear, Funcom has done an AMAZING job cleaning up the bugs in the code. Having played since the beginning of EA and the sloppy mess of spilled cereal EA was, it is a credit to Funcom’s development team to see how far they’ve come. That being said, this game called for more experienced engineers. It is clear this game was most if not all of the development team’s first experience with Unreal 4. To not know how the engine loads the terrain and to have that inexperience cost players the “mounts” feature for the foreseeable future is inexcusable. The original combat system was extremely short-sighted and further cost players an unknown amount of content depth due to the technical debt the developers had to come back and address. Revamping a combat system halfway through development is no easy task, sure, and the developers should be proud of their effort, but having the whole thing poorly planned from the beginning is the problem that should be highlighted here. Too often is effort praised while the problems that required such effort overlooked. Let me put it this way: if I spill my beer on the carpet but clean it up really well, should I be proud of myself?
I played Age of Conan in its own beta and Gaute Godager’s game had the same problems as Conan Exiles: bugs and depth. REH’s Conan is a big, big hero who lives in a big, big world, but sadly Conan is simply too big an IP for Funcom to handle and I think they’ve proven it again with Conan Exiles. I’d prefer they relinquish their rights on the IP to a more experienced studio so we can have a Conan game that lives up to his name.