Hey all, I haven’t played CE in quite a while and am still discovering what has come with the last couple updates. A friend and I are working on a short stories from the Exiled Lands project and, while checking the wiki to see what NPC races were running around in the game these days, I found quite an expansive list.
I haven’t played actively in Exiled Lands since Siptah came out, but I clearly remember encountering the following NPC races: Cimmerian, Darfari, Hyborian, Hyrkanian, Lemurian, Nordheimer, Shemite, Stygian, Zamorian and Zingaran. I am not completely sure about Kushite and Kambujan, but I think I’ve seen those, too.
I’ve never seen Aquilonian, Khitan, Pict, Tribal Himelian, Turanian, Vendhyan or Yamatai NPCs and I’m fairly sure they are not in the game. Maybe an Aquilonian armorer, but I don’t remember clearly.
I can confirm definitely having encountered Kushite and Kambujan in the Exiled Lands (along with the rest of CodeMage’s list). As far as I’m aware Khitan, Pict, Tribal Himelian and Vendhyan are all only options for player characters. Aquilonian is just one particular type of Hyborian, likewise Turanian is jut a type of Hyrkanian - so they’re technically both there and not there, depending on how you view it. (Yamatai are apparently meant to be an offshoot of Khitan, so I guess that means they’re doubly not present…)
Yamatai isn’t even a player option, which still bothers my detail-obsessed nerd brain. They’ve got their own DLC, so players should be able to choose Yamatai as their race instead of just going with Khitan and pretending or making a Hyborian Age weeb.
…Also more Khitan/Yamatai head options YEAH I KNOW we got another one with Siptah but it looks like it stuck its face in a bee hive.
Also speaking of Asians in this game:
I’ve never seen a Kambujan NPC in the wild, but after spawning a few in via the admin panel and just seeing a bunch of generic dark-skinned people and one strawberry blonde white lady I can’t help but wonder if anyone at Funcom ever realized that Kambuja is an old name for Cambodia. Given that Khitai is an old name for China and Yamatai was a region in ancient Japan it’s not too hard to figure out the pattern of influences there.
(Seriously guys there’s a lot of potential for cool Khmer-inspired Kambujan stuff and their rivalry with Khitai could make for some interesting material for the RP crowd if you actually put some effort into it.)
Just a FYI, the race of your character is just a preset appearance. If you select Kushite and then set the face, colors, and hair to that of the Nordheimer, it looks as if you chose Nordheimer.
So if you want to look like a race that isn’t in the game, you simply need to adjust the sliders. With that said, Barbarian Surgeon just released an update today that could help with those wanting to play a Yamatai Character.
But you don’t need a mod, just need to be creative in CC.
Yeah I was bothered by the fact that race means nothing in terms of cosmetics, gameplay, or even how you interact with the world or how the world interacts with you. So i’m not so sure why there are mutiple races in the game when it literally is purely for roleplay purposes?
Well if there were a character “meta” I would say it is the Cimmerian male with the short goatee (played by men and boys that have facial hair issues) or the female cimmerian/Nordheimer with the short hair, side swept bangs and huge breasts (also played by guys with facial hair issues).
what would be even more awesome if I could actually see a difference in the races so far i don’t see much difference in the different races at all, which i wish there was, but at least we got mods that gives us some new faces and stuff ^^
So awesome to see a discussion in this post. I was running out the door yesterday so didn’t have time to reply.
Besides not playing much for the past few months, I (as well as my GPortal server) have been around on XBox since pre-release. As I recall, the player race selections are pretty much the same now as then, but we got to see Lemurians in the jungle when the Derketo DLC came out. Of the races in the list I originally pasted from the wiki article, the ones I still haven’t seen on the map are:
Aquilonian, Kambujan, Khitan, Pict, Tribal Himelian/Turanian, Vendhyan, and Yamatai.
I do agree that if you’re going to release DLC that is oriented to specific races, that race should be available as a PC choice and should spawn as NPCs in whatever part of the map is most appropriate for them. The fact that race has no bearing on game mechanics should make this next to simple, as it would only be a text string in the character sheet, or on an NPC’s nameplate. Riddle of Steel and Riders have gear that refers to other races not on this list, it would be fun to have those available as well.
But since we’re on the subject of in-game race and since that is related to questions of in-game lore, has anyone explored backstory channels for the origins of the races, how they have become established in the Exiled Lands, and their relationships with the ruling powers there? I think the opening scene with the cross, etc. is artificially limiting for players with an RP interest because it suggests that everyone there is a criminal of some sort from outside, who has been exiled, when in “reality” there have been humans in the exiled lands for generations and hundreds of years. Within the exiled lands the majority of humans would probably have no knowledge of another world beyond the ghost wall, and would have enough of a history and culture inside the Exiled Lands that such a world outside would be mythic and alien.
If you’re looking for Kambujans on Exiled Lands, I think most of them that I’ve encountered have been Black Hand - though that may just be coincidence. I also think most of them have been armorers, which may be ‘why’ they were in the game, because someone needed to be able to craft the Kambujan exceptional and flawless armors.
For the others on your list, I’ve not encountered them either (although Turan is ‘just’ a kingdom of Hyrkanians, and Aquilonia is ‘just’ Hyborians, so arguably we do encounter them - though in the Howard stories, he often specified Turnanian or Aquilonian (rather than just Hyrkanian or Hyborian), so it certainly wouldn’t be ‘wrong’ to encounter them…)
Riders I assume you mean Poitainian - actually a province within Aquilonia, so a ‘sub-type’ of a ‘sub-type’, similar to Bossonians and Gunderlanders (I think Bossonia only gets mentioned in game with the bow from the Aquilonia DLC and a few named npcs (Galter of Bossonia, Hanar of Bossonia)).
I’m not sure which other race you mean from Riddle of Steel (it’s bugging me now, lol) - all my brain is coming up with for that dlc is the statues and the Lion throne - clearly I’m forgetting something…
Not directly for the exiled lands, but you may be interested in an essay R E Howard wrote called ‘The Hyborian Age’ - it’s been reprinted several times, although online I’ve only ever been able to find edited versions (like someone decided they ‘knew better’…). It’s quite an interesting read covering the evolution of the different races, development of the kingdoms etc, and then a second half covering what happens between the age of conan and the dawn of history. It is, of course, a product of its time, with separate evolution of different races of humans, which can cause offense in the modern world - but that doesn’t stop it from being pretty cool.
Development of the groups within the Exiled Lands is an interesting question - a settlement like New Asagarth or the Mounds of the Dead doesn’t seem like something that happens in just one generation. The fact there are no children in EL makes it odd for ongoing developing societies - but that may be to prevent real-world complaints, so might just be a matter of suspension of disbelief (‘they’re around somewhere, just they all hide when attacks happen’ - not a great explanation, but it might do…)
That said, I have a vague memory of the Exiled Lands only recently having started being populated again - doesn’t the Warmaker say stuff about humans only starting to show up again after Thoth-Amon visited? I believe that’s supposed to be the ‘explanation’ for how everyone got there - ‘Thoth-Amon did it’. Must admit, though, I’m not a big fan of that explanation - I’d much prefer your idea of exploring broken offshoot cultures that have evolved in the El over time. The Lemurians, for example, make comparatively little sense as a newly established group - sure, most of the original Lemurians seem to be supposed to have degenerated into the Grey Apes, with the humans we encounter often being members of other races treating ‘Lemurian’ as a faction rather than a race - but the Sunken City seems to be inhabited by ‘true Lemurians’ (have they been there all along? How come they didn’t spread to populate the rest of the EL if there was no one else there for so long?).
I’d quite like to see the Exiles faction be the people sent recently, and maybe have the other groups be more established - as you suggest it could be really interesting to see how their belief systems have evolved over that time. The nearest we have currently to that I’d say is what Braga talks about up at the Mounds about his clan believing they are dead and in Crom’s realm ‘because it’s foggy’ or maybe the Outcast and what he has to say about Frost Giant beliefs. I’d definitely like to see more exploration of those sorts of elements
Sorry, there’s nothing in riddle of steel. I remember there were armor pieces and weapons but now also remember they didn’t have any specific racial designation.
So, the question about race and nationality is a little fuzzy in how they are offered for pc choices. I’m assuming that since it’s only text we might as well be as specific with player choices as we are with what is offered in dlc, or simply allow players to key in their race/ nationality/ etc as opposed to it being hardwired into the choices.
There is an REH archive website from an Australian university that has the original text of “the hyborian age”. I don’t have the link on my phone but can provide it later when I’m at my laptop.
It was the inclusion of the Lemurians in the derketo update that originally got my wheels turning about legacy cultures within the exiled lands.
There is a ton of lore in CE itself https://conanexiles.gamepedia.com/Lore
After reading the lore stones and talking to the few ancients, my take on it was that humans were originally cast out of other lands and then the ancients used them as slaves.
As time progressed, some humans managed to escape and form tribes, which eventually populated the land.
Then there was a cataclysmic event that destroyed most of the ancient race and their cities. One of the lore stones speaks of a “new weapon used by the invaders” that the human slaves were forbidden to talk about.
I’ve always taken the ‘new weapon used by the invaders’ to be something the Witch Queen and her (original) Lemurians used in their war against the Giant Kings - I’m sure there’s another stone somewhere that talks about their ‘strange new sciences’ or something similar. I’ve always figured that the weapon was what shattered the shattered springs - which Giant Kings propaganda then tries to claim was just a ‘natural phenomena’. That also would make sense of the freaky ‘trees’ - remains of the Giant Kings’ lost army. I’m sure I saw somewhere someone saying that the Child of Jhebbal Sag used to be somewhere near the springs (before my time) - if so, that would make way more sense of his line about the trees ‘endlessly screaming’.
Of course, one of the great things about CE lore is that they’ve left that ‘openworld’ too, so there’s room for a ton of different interpretations
That would be great - I currently only have access to the second half, having lost my copy of the book that had the first half in it…