Age of Conan Going Free-to-Play

Age of Conan Going Free-to-Play

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The only thing better than the whole, "crush your enemies, see them driven before you" thing, is getting to do it for free.

Funcom's Age of Conan MMO is joining the likes of Dungeons & Dragons Online and Champions Online and going free-to-play. Just like its contemporaries though, there will still be a place for subscriptions in AoC, you just won't need one to get in on the action.

Free players will get access to four of the game's twelve character classes, and three of the game's areas. Free players will also be able to play through around half of the game's instanced dungeons and two of the six raid scenario. If free players want even more Conan-themed goodness, they will be able to gain access to additional content by buying passes. A full breakdown of the difference between free and premium players can be found here.

Age of Conan's executive producer, Craig Morrison, said that Funcom wasn't afraid of making changes to its business model, and added that taking the game F2P actually wasn't anything that Funcom hadn't done before. "This isn't new ground for us," he said. "We were really pioneers with this format back when we did it in 2005 with Anarchy Online, so it was natural for us that we would adopt a similar approach for Age of Conan."

Morrison said that pretty much everything that to in Age of Conan subscribers will have access to will be available to purchase separately, but only for a limited time, as Funcom wanted there to be a real advantage to being a subscriber. Morrison said that going F2P would remove the barriers keeping people from trying Age of Conan, something that he - predictably enough - recommended that everyone should do at least once.

Funcom says that the new model for Age of Conan is scheduled to go live this summer.

Source: PC Gamer

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BAh, formt he overview of the system, seems more like extended trail than actual F2P. I wouldn't even be able to play my old character considering it was Bear Shaman (which will be premium class) and was decked in raid items while the raids are premium as well.
Guess not much reason to re-install it still unless they plan some semi-premium bonuses to past subscribers.

Makes me wonder what does the whole unrated deal means. Does it mean less or more gore/nudity?

Sounds like a good idea.
I have been meaning to try it again for a while now. Maybe this is the time then.
(mission accomplished, eh Morrison:-)

Edit
But if I can still swim up waterfalls, this will be a severe barrier-to-entry

So it's going free-to-play then? Call me back when it's fun-to-play

No, really, I tried it out. I just didn't find it fun.
Still, this was a while ago, so I can see no harm in trying it out again...

Funcom wasn't afraid of making changes to its business model

I guess all those billions of active subscriptions have really awoken their inner generosity.

And I agree, I wouldn't call this Free-to-Play. It's more like a game trial version that doesn't have a time limit.

Oh I'd say there a few more barriers preventing people from playing Age of Conan, Morrison.
One begins with a C and ends in ataclysm
Seriously, the way WoW destroys competing MMO's is absolutely Barbaric

A game trial for teens to get cheap boobies...why don't they do anything nice?

looking at the model they have its like "free to play, suffer for not" I don't quite care for these free models which still put a imbalance between between the gap. I find I switch from one game to the other a lot so monthly fees feel like a chain that forces me to play, if they gave unlimited access for a fee to blah like a expansion pack that is fine but forcing to pay premium just to get access to stuff is bad business.

nice, might give it a go

mexicola:
And I agree, I wouldn't call this Free-to-Play. It's more like a game trial version that doesn't have a time limit.

It's not as bad as Lord of the Rings Online. You have to pay $3-5 per zone outside the 3 starting zones, and the level 20-30 zone, even if you previously bough the game.

At least they don't start restricting zones until higher levels, instead of halfway.

Those cuts seem a bit heavy handed. The rest of it I can see, but reducing the character class selection is just lame. Two problems I have with that is you still must pay unless one of the 4 of 12 classes is the one you want, making it not free to play. Secondly, since many people will not want to pay they are destabilizing the game's class balance ensuring an overage of those 4 classes.

After seeing decisions like that it doesn't surprise me that the game has to go "free to play".

The more MMO's that go free-to-play the less effective this is going to become. When this craze began to kick-off everyone would go check it out, because a decent free MMO was a big deal. Now people are going to be more apathetic :(

I hope it works out though, because as it stands, this is good for everyone

i like this. back when i was playing runescape (long, long ago, had a lvl 80 by the time they started doing the 1st hd upgrades and thats when i left) i played a fair chunk into it and the fee was just stopping me from doing the more profitable things and a large percentage of the quests, which i didn't mind. i eventually wanted more to do so i payed the small monthly fee and enjoyed the world being opened up.

i wish more mmo's would follow this, i mean, most mmo's (mmorpgs) try to emulate WoW's hugely successful business model and then they fall flat on their face. have you ever played an mmorpg on your own? its really boring. the only advantage is that there's friends and thats the fun bit... also the killer of new games.

I remember playing this game the moment it released. Man it sucked. It's been a good while that a game somehow managed to be so completely UN-FUN in every way possible. So many things about it were just done wrong. Which sucked because I had a lot of hopes for it.

Free to play? I guess I'm not entirely surprised. I'd like to give it a go, but the taste it left in my mouth when I played it so long ago is still bitter. I'm willing to admit that many of my problems with it have been fixed, but I still am not excited to try it after the train wreck I witnessed.

Tohuvabohu:
I remember playing this game the moment it released. Man it sucked. It's been a good while that a game somehow managed to be so completely UN-FUN in every way possible. So many things about it were just done wrong. Which sucked because I had a lot of hopes for it.

Free to play? I guess I'm not entirely surprised. I'd like to give it a go, but the taste it left in my mouth when I played it so long ago is still bitter. I'm willing to admit that many of my problems with it have been fixed, but I still am not excited to try it after the train wreck I witnessed.

i feel like im one of the only people who liked it. why did you hate it so much? the reason i quit was more because of the players than the game itself. i mean i know getting ganked by players like 40 levels higher than you is part of the mmo experience but never was it as bad as it was in aoc, for me. also the spiders scared me too much. but i really liked the combat. it was much more interactive than other mmos and felt less boring. plus i liked the fact that my sword didnt magically pass through an enemies i wasnt directly targeting

00slash00:

Tohuvabohu:
I remember playing this game the moment it released. Man it sucked. It's been a good while that a game somehow managed to be so completely UN-FUN in every way possible. So many things about it were just done wrong. Which sucked because I had a lot of hopes for it.

Free to play? I guess I'm not entirely surprised. I'd like to give it a go, but the taste it left in my mouth when I played it so long ago is still bitter. I'm willing to admit that many of my problems with it have been fixed, but I still am not excited to try it after the train wreck I witnessed.

i feel like im one of the only people who liked it. why did you hate it so much? the reason i quit was more because of the players than the game itself. i mean i know getting ganked by players like 40 levels higher than you is part of the mmo experience but never was it as bad as it was in aoc, for me. also the spiders scared me too much. but i really liked the combat. it was much more interactive than other mmos and felt less boring. plus i liked the fact that my sword didnt magically pass through an enemies i wasnt directly targeting

I guess you can say my expectations might've been unreasonably high. I dunno, it seemed to have a ton of potential and I expected a lot out of it. But in practice it just didn't work out very well for me. Here are some things that bothered me about it.

1. The combat - I felt the combat was too stiff. I appreciate that they tried something new and for the most part, it worked. Perhaps I didn't pick the best class to experience the combat, (I was a guardian) but after awhile any novelty it had over other MMO's with their auto attacks just wore off. The fatalities were cool though.

2. The PVP - This was the biggest shit sucker of the game. Again, I know I didn't pick the best PVP class. But the actual PVP practice of the game when it came out was horrible. This is how I remember the PVP. Load new area, zone in to new area, Ranger shoots you to death the moment you zone in. Happened all the time. It was just absolutely infuriating. The devs realized this was a serious problem and added some kind of protection while entering a new zone, but this didn't change much. Rangers were horrendously overpowered against basically anything except other rangers. (Yo dawg I herd you dont like rangers so we made the counter to ranger rangers so you can ranger the rangers while you ranger dawg.) Getting ambushed by random people all classes while I'm trying to kill spiders (everyone can stealth lol) or getting lightning bolts dropped on top of my head, or getting swarmed by necromancers and their 6 pets at once all the while I'm trying to quest. Part of the MMO experience? I'd say this was part of the Age of Conan experience. I could barely quest without taking faroff routes that often involved swimming up waterfalls just to avoid the rangers shooting at each other. It was just not fun at all. It was miserable.

3. Bugs - Not much of a complaint now since I'm sure the ones I experienced are gone, and were symptomatic of a rushed release. But I'm one of those people that got stuck inside rocks all the time. Amusing, yes. But not in the middle of a quest in some faroff zone and leaves me no choice but to port myself out and run my ass all the way back. I'm sure these are gone though.

The game started off strong, and quickly became a miserable experience for me. It may have just been me, or the server I was in, but people were mostly interested in ganking the hell out of each other and trolling each other over general chat constantly. My experience in the game was not a fun one at all, and it's left me extremely reluctant to try it again. :\ I'm still sad that it disappointed me so much.

Won't only allowing 4 classes really mess up the balance of classes? Making a huge influx of those 4?

I won't deny that I want to try AoC, but the download is way too big. I've tried downloading it a couple of times now and I gave up after three days and it had only gotten 30%. 40gb+ is something that takes a long time to download, and when your download limit is only 80gb then it's a real kick in the balls.

(looks at restrictions) pass....i would expect a company to try to get me playing rather then tell me i cant do 3/4 of the game content, i assume its for the paying members to make them feel less sad that dirty free players can now play the game for free.

But ya at this point its clear that MMOs are not trying to give the person a GAME

00slash00:

Tohuvabohu:
I remember playing this game the moment it released. Man it sucked. It's been a good while that a game somehow managed to be so completely UN-FUN in every way possible. So many things about it were just done wrong. Which sucked because I had a lot of hopes for it.

Free to play? I guess I'm not entirely surprised. I'd like to give it a go, but the taste it left in my mouth when I played it so long ago is still bitter. I'm willing to admit that many of my problems with it have been fixed, but I still am not excited to try it after the train wreck I witnessed.

i feel like im one of the only people who liked it. why did you hate it so much? the reason i quit was more because of the players than the game itself. i mean i know getting ganked by players like 40 levels higher than you is part of the mmo experience but never was it as bad as it was in aoc, for me. also the spiders scared me too much. but i really liked the combat. it was much more interactive than other mmos and felt less boring. plus i liked the fact that my sword didnt magically pass through an enemies i wasnt directly targeting

I liked it aswell, But my major problem with it which in the end forced me to quit was the player base. Not enough people play the game, even when it is streamlined to only 4 servers. most played at launch and got put off by it's rushed nature and buggy gameplay. Even now that the majority are fixed people are just not willing to give it another shot. Plus as a guy who prefer's PVP it kind of sucks. People only really play one type of game on one level which sucks and as for world pvp it is rare to find another player out in conan's massive world that won't just turn tail and run at the sight of another player. All in all I would love to play again and have no problem paying for it. But I would like to know there is a decent player base to make it worth the time. As someone said, playing on MMO by yourself is pretty boring.

Still won't try it. Only 3 Area's and 4 classes makes it a waste of time. Heck even LOTR:Online only holds back 2 classes, all the area's are accessible.

Try harder.

night_chrono:

mexicola:
And I agree, I wouldn't call this Free-to-Play. It's more like a game trial version that doesn't have a time limit.

It's not as bad as Lord of the Rings Online. You have to pay $3-5 per zone outside the 3 starting zones, and the level 20-30 zone, even if you previously bough the game.

At least they don't start restricting zones until higher levels, instead of halfway.

Not sure what Lotr:online your playing, but I've not had to pay a cent and I've left those 3 starting area's many times.

RanD00M:
I won't deny that I want to try AoC, but the download is way too big. I've tried downloading it a couple of times now and I gave up after three days and it had only gotten 30%. 40gb+ is something that takes a long time to download, and when your download limit is only 80gb then it's a real kick in the balls.

Game is only 20 gig these days and they've really improved the downloading-process.

AoC is nice, in some ways, but not to pay a subscription for.

Taking a stroll through the plains of Poitain is epic, I have to say(unless you get ambushed).

AoC has some of the best music I have ever heard in a game.

Ardanwen:

RanD00M:
I won't deny that I want to try AoC, but the download is way too big. I've tried downloading it a couple of times now and I gave up after three days and it had only gotten 30%. 40gb+ is something that takes a long time to download, and when your download limit is only 80gb then it's a real kick in the balls.

Game is only 20 gig these days and they've really improved the downloading-process.

The last time I tried to download it was a month ago, so I doubt a lot has changed since then. And with simple math I can also conclude that I would be at 60% after 3 days instead of just 30%. Woohoo.

I wanted to play this game for a while, but then I remembered the amount of space to install it and the download and I kind of hold back to try it.

Tohuvabohu:

2. The PVP - This was the biggest shit sucker of the game. Again, I know I didn't pick the best PVP class. But the actual PVP practice of the game when it came out was horrible. This is how I remember the PVP. Load new area, zone in to new area, Ranger shoots you to death the moment you zone in. Happened all the time. It was just absolutely infuriating. The devs realized this was a serious problem and added some kind of protection while entering a new zone, but this didn't change much. Rangers were horrendously overpowered against basically anything except other rangers. (Yo dawg I herd you dont like rangers so we made the counter to ranger rangers so you can ranger the rangers while you ranger dawg.) Getting ambushed by random people all classes while I'm trying to kill spiders (everyone can stealth lol) or getting lightning bolts dropped on top of my head, or getting swarmed by necromancers and their 6 pets at once all the while I'm trying to quest. Part of the MMO experience? I'd say this was part of the Age of Conan experience. I could barely quest without taking faroff routes that often involved swimming up waterfalls just to avoid the rangers shooting at each other. It was just not fun at all. It was miserable.

this is one thing i cant argue with. when encountering other players they would either instantly run away, or attack me on sight. it was certainly the most antisocial mmo i ever played. with wow i would always wait til someone was not fighting anyone, and approximately the same level as me, before fighting them. in aoc i quickly learned to just fight everyone i saw, before they could fight me. this usually ended one of two ways: either i would slaughter someone 10 levels below me and feel like a dick, or their friends would unstealth and fuckin destroy me. grouping with people never even came into the equation since everyone was either scared or hostile i would end up doing 99% of the quests by myself. and i swear some players were paying $15/month just to stealth in newbie zones and wait for someone 30 levels below them to walk by so they could ambush the poor player. i began to schedule my play time around when i thought the fewest players would be online.

still, i dont know if this is a fault of the game or if it just attracted assholes. i want to say its the other players who ruined the experience but at the same time, i never had this problem in wow. at least not to such an extreme extent.

i personally loved the combat. it was nice to play an mmo with combat that consisted of more than waiting for my abilities to cool down. in fact the combat was the main reason i got the game. was this worth the $500 i had to spend upgrading my computer in order to run the game smoothly on max settings...no. but then again, i cant say i regret upgrading my pc. a powerful computer is never a bad thing

Yeah screw that crap. Not offering all the classes is sleazy as crap and will only serve to unbalance server class populations. Funcom is just full of suck.

RanD00M:

Ardanwen:

RanD00M:
I won't deny that I want to try AoC, but the download is way too big. I've tried downloading it a couple of times now and I gave up after three days and it had only gotten 30%. 40gb+ is something that takes a long time to download, and when your download limit is only 80gb then it's a real kick in the balls.

Game is only 20 gig these days and they've really improved the downloading-process.

The last time I tried to download it was a month ago, so I doubt a lot has changed since then. And with simple math I can also conclude that I would be at 60% after 3 days instead of just 30%. Woohoo.

I think the problem lies with your internet connection then :P

 

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