Feedback: Rescuing Thralls

TL; DR – I absolutely love the concept, but not the execution.


Single player, PvE, North America


I have tested out this mechanic. Here’s what happened at the Black Corsair encampment:

In the middle, there are four cages with prisoners inside. Only one seems to have an option to “open a door.” If you attempt to open that cage door, you get a “It is locked” message. To open the cage, you have to kill the jailor and take his key. The jailor is basically a T4 taskmaster. If you kill the jailor and loot his key, then you can go back and open the cage door. Immediately upon opening the cage door, the thrall inside ‘thanks you’ and becomes your thrall on the spot with a message like ‘Fighter I is following you.’

And once you use the key, it disappears. One key, one door.

I don’t know what happens if you already have a thrall following you. I was alone at the time.
And I could not see what type of thrall was in the cage until I got the door open. That could have been me not aiming my mouse correctly (needs further testing).


  1. It seems I’m only allowed to rescue one thrall. ← I don’t like that artificial limit.
  2. The thralls rescued seem to be a very low value. ← this was my first rescue, but it would seem that enemies would want to “keep” high value people and kill low value ones; granted my sample size is very low, so take that with a ‘grain of salt’ (for now).
  3. The thrall was ready to ‘follow’ instantly (no waiting on the “wheel of pain”). ← seems ‘too easy’

Suggested changes:

  1. Give players more options with cages. Let players choose whom to rescue. Cages can have more than one thrall inside (perhaps unconscious and unresponsive just languishing in the cage).

  2. The key should expire after a time limit, not immediately turn to dust. Let the one key open all the cages in the area. It disappears after leaving the area and after, say, a one hour time limit starting with its first use (it can be stored for later, but once used, it has to continue to be used or disappear). Or let the key have a limited use like the oils in the Unnamed City (short duration, not instantly gone).

  3. Thralls in cages, if increasing the number of them, can still be random (like several in one cage – see #1). But if there’s going to be only one, then it should be a high value thrall – ‘worth keeping alive’.

  4. Thralls should not be ‘instantaneously’ following the player. Let them be found in a ‘knocked out’ condition inside the cage. Let players pick them up (inventory) instead of being made to follow.

I would suggest that players who want to rescue thralls carry, instead of bindings, perhaps a portable stretcher pulled by a rope. The animation mechanic doesn’t need to change much (have the player, with the portable stretcher equipped in their taskbar press their ‘interaction’ key just like we do with bindings). The bindings pull the cloth stretcher with rope (same animation as used with ‘knocked out’ thralls). See below for example:

Paraguard-Rescue-Stretcher

Whether to add a “stretcher” or simply drag the unconscious thrall back to one’s recovery station (see below) is optional. The same animation for bindings can be used in both situations.

Next, let the rescued thrall recover (like a weak and sick patient in a hospital). This should talk the same amount of time as a thrall in a “wheel of pain”. No advantage to how a thrall is “converted”.

So instead of constructing a wheel of pain, players construct a recovery bed (there are plenty of beds already in the game) - we don’t even need a “new” station. Just add the option to beds to make it able to allow a thrall to recover on it. Give it a place for an attending thrall, too, if used for recovery or the option for a spawn point like it just automatically does now (like a decision wheel setting when we command thralls behavior and tactics).

Add a new thrall to the game – healer. Instead of taskmasters at the wheel of pain, we can get ‘healers’ for our recovery bed(s). The bed needs to be stocked with aloe potions and/wraps or even ambrosia instead of just food on the wheel of pain. And the better the Healer, the faster a thrall can recover (so T4 named healers are valuable).

And if you want to add an even more complex dynamic, the better the healing ‘supplies’ that are added, the faster the thrall ‘recovers.’ Likewise, the higher tier the healer thrall is, the faster a thrall will recover. Upon full recovery, the thrall becomes a member of the player’s household just like ‘converted’ thralls.

This method keeps the ‘rescue’ mechanic consistent with the way Conan Exiles is played, doesn’t give any advantage to ‘capturing thralls’ either by enslavement or rescue, adds a new thrall type to the game, and adds value to existing resources (beds and healing mechanics).

Yes, this would require a little more work to make it happen, but I believe Conan Exiles would be better off for it. Devs, please reconsider the method of execution as to how players will rescue thralls.

10 Likes

Just to mention, you can lead the thrall out of the camp to safety and then rescue it later by using the rescue feature.

My personal feedback so far:

  • Thralls seem to be of low value except for maybe the T3 bearer if you are just starting out. To rescue a thrall of low value you need to kill a T4 taskmaster. It is probably meant to help new players get their first thrall but we find those thralls in the higher tier camps as well where a new player would have trouble to stay alive.
  • It is hard to see what kind of thrall it is in the cage before opening it.
  • Leading the thrall out of the camp to safety and rescuing it later is not impossible. You may want to clear the camp before you attempt opening the cage.
  • As a level 60 char, I don’t see myself using this mechanic at all. As a newbie char, I would probably still try to enslave that T4 taskmaster instead of killing it for the key.
  • If the value of thralls remains so low, I don’t mind it being easy because they are basically worthless.
8 Likes

I just canceled my Thrall to follow, opened the cage, got a Fighter II with 900 life, burst out loud to tears from this, removed the slave’s nubo, took mine with 10 640 Life and ran on my business

4 Likes

Single player/No mods

I agree rescuing thralls is a great idea, but is poorly implemented. It is trading a T4 taskmaster for a low tier fighter you are not going to want to keep. In all my testing I found one T4 bearer though I admit not a large sample size.

I would much prefer being able to rescue crafter thralls as well as combat thralls even if that means the cage opens like a loot chest and you remove the trained thrall from the cage inventory to your inventory.

In my experience on Single player if you rescue a thrall while you have another thrall following you the rescue thrall just kind of walks off into the sunset without despawning. On a pve-c or pve server is this going to create a mess of abandoned thralls no one wants? Has anyone thought about what may happen to server performance if there are lots of abandoned T1/T2 thralls?

The system would be better if the cages generally had a thrall in it that was similar in value to the T4 Jailor, and included crafter as well as combat thralls. The limiting factor behind the cage rescue system should be limiting the availability of the key from the jailor either lower his spawn rate or the drop rate of his key. As it stands now you can get lots of keys, and when you get one you are faced with the problem of where you are going to stash this T1 fighter’s body you just rescued because he is next to useless to anyone who can kill a jailor.

Would also be fun to try to blast cages open with explosives when you are lacking a key even if it had a real high chance of killing the occupant.

3 Likes

This is a good point, if not mistaken their initial guarding position is their cage. Most of the thralls are pretty weak so eventually they will get killed by the other npcs but still this would only happen if there is anyone in rendering distance. Without the thrall limiter being active, this may indeed turn out to be an issue on official servers.

1 Like

More then likey, the daily reset would remove any unclaimed thralls.

Edit: I misunderstood what happens on rescue. Strike throughed as the information was incorrect.

2 Likes

They are claimed though, they automatically become yours.

In my limited experience on Single player/no mods with cages I now have 4 T2 fighter that after I rescued walked off in a random direction until they got to water and stopped and put themselves in a guarding state.
Specifically I have been messing with the camp located at J7. 3 of the thralls planted themselves in a safe place and are not going to die unless someone drags fights to them. 1 thrall keeps getting in a fight with an alligator that he can win.

If the thralls walk off and plant themselves safe on official servers like they did on my single player game I can see this being a mess on pve/pve-c offical servers.

1 Like

I did some testing. If the population limiter is enabled and you rescue thrall after you have reached your limit, this puts you over the limit and a thrall (random!?) will be deleted if you don’t do the cleanup yourself. Currently, it seems that the limiter is not really working at all (made a bug report about it) EDIT: Cleanup works but it has a buffer of 10 thralls. However, as long as it remains disabled, this won’t be a solution to this potential problem on official servers.

Maybe a better solution would be a pop up message, something like Do you want to accept this Fighter 2 to join your ranks? Yes or No. select No and it de-spawns. yes, it follows you.

But the problem would still be if you already have a follower in tow.

6 Likes

How about change the game up completely…Only way to get named fighters/archers is from the rescue system. Think about it…When you raid a village, the fighters are warrior who rather die than be a servant if you got them by knocking them out. Now, you can have RNG for crafters as well in cages, but the majority should always be fighters and archers in cages.

And as far as knocking out crafters, that stays the same as it is now. Crafters tend to obey the warriors when enslaved, but a fighter, even if at first shows allegiance after being converted, would kill you in your sleep if given the chance or die trying to escape. A rescued fighter, on the other hand, will forever be in your debt. Just throwing out some more immersive story telling than boop and place.

1 Like

Yes, the population limiter could pose a problem when recruiting thralls and you are ‘automatically’ given the thrall you are rescuing.

1 Like

We have figured in another thread that the limiter now has a buffer (a server setting), so you it tells you that you are above the limit but it doesn’t start deleting anything unless you go +10 over the set limit.

1 Like

If things stay the way they are and unless I’m missing something, I foresee a lot of abandoned thralls muddying up these camps, just as you say. This could be a big a problem. Some great suggestions have been purposed to deal with it, but one thing is for sure. The rescued thralls should not automatically bare allegiance to the rescuer. Most players won’t take the time to break the bond. They’ll just leave them behind. And since most of them are low level. Many will be left behind.

Love the idea, but in its current state I fear it will be mostly useless for higher level players and actively harmful to server performance.

3 Likes

This has still not been enabled on Official servers, so sky is still the limit.

I do not understand why they do not activate the limit of slaves, introduce something to the conan and then not use it, I do not understand it, especially when it is supposed to be a substantial improvement to avoid the overpopulation of slaves.

No, no, and no

Sorry, I should have clarified that I was meaning that thralls should be found in a ‘knocked out’ condition inside the cage (so players can pick them up instead of being made to follow).

Still disagree or did that clarification help any?

2 Likes

I guess that could work. I just felt it was great to be able to do a good deed among all the horrible things you regularly do in the game that makes it feel more like I’m playing Thulsa Doom Exiles rather than Conan Exiles, with all the raiding, enslaving, torturing, sacrificing, butchering, and cannibalizing I find myself doing regularly. Not that I mind it (it’s just a game), but it adds RP balance.

Edit: But then you shouldn’t have to put them on the Wheel of Pain

1 Like

Absolutely! I agree completely with you on that point.

Again, I agree. That’s why I posted the long description of ‘healing’ these new rescued thralls, adding a ‘healer’ thrall to the game, using beds (instead of wheels of pain), stocked with aloe potions and healing wraps. Was that part not clear (is there a part that I need to clarify in the first post that started this thread)? Please let me know how I can make the ‘recovery of rescued thralls’ concept more clear.