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Age Of Conan: Slips and Slides

Something I meant to write at the bottom of the Age Of Conan preview was that I fully expect the game to slip to the summer. Somehow I forgot to write it, and today it was announced that there'd be no sign of it until May. I'd have looked so knowledgable and astute. Pretend like I wrote it, eh? I'll extend that prediction and say we'll not be in Hyboria until July.

Anyhow, to keep us interested with the longer gap, a tech demo has been released by Funcom. No, there's no need to go looking for it - it's right here!

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Thanks, Gametrailers. You can ride on the back of our rhino any time.

Point of interest: those day/night cycles are more than the irritating need to squint every few minutes when the game decides it's night time. It genuinely affects the game, causing NPCs to change their behaviour accordingly. Even the weather will do this. So let's say you're in an instanced valley, trying to sneak past a series of guards on patrol, if it starts raining you can take advantage of their trying to seek shelter. Or wait until night when the guards will huddle around campfires, or switch duties as each takes a sleeping break. The idea is to increase the volume of tactics employed while approaching what might otherwise appear routine quests. This isn't WoW, where you aggro and pull your way through each crowd. If it works, if they deliver on their promises, then you can start to use the AI against itself.

Another thought: looking at the footage, it's quite easy to compare it to contemporary third-person action games on PC or PS360 and dismiss them. But quickly, boot up WoW and take a look at how it suddenly looks incredibly archaic.

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John Walker avatar

John Walker


Once one of the original co-founders of Rock Paper Shotgun, we killed John out of jealousy. He now runs buried-treasure.org