In Conan Exiles, 'home is where you keep the hearts of your enemies'

January's the month: Conan Exiles hits early access on the 31st as Funcom's latest Conan-franchise game, this one an unabashed survival sandbox with a bit of MMORPG flair. (Xbox One players will be waiting until spring, unfortunately!) The team has a new video out today in which Joel Bylos and Lead Designer Oscar Lopez Lacalle talk up the game's building gameplay, tools, and mechanics.

The duo say that outposts and homes are mission-critical not just for keeping your loot and your guildies safe but also for kicking back and playing the decorating game. Players will be doing much more than just plopping down a prefab house; in fact, you'll basically be building it brick by brick, voxel-style -- and tearing your enemies' buildings down the same way.

"They say home is where the heart is," Bylos deadpans at the end, "but in Conan Exiles, home is where you keep the hearts of your enemies."

Funcom's streaming again at 1 p.m. EST this afternoon, but in the meantime, here's the new trailer and infographic:

Source: Press release
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52 comments
Dajhryne
Dajhryne

The stream looked impressive to me though as someone who doesn't care for survival games in general I have nothing to compare it against. Seems worth watching if you haven't.

Nakua
Nakua

If only this was a open world ffa mmorpg would have been amazing, but unfortunately is another survival game in a little map with 60 players. I'm sick of these games because they get redundant and boring pretty fast.


Hope Crowfall, Darkfall and CoE deliver, if they do then 2017 will be a great year for old school kind of mmorpgs.

Jnaathra
Jnaathra

@Nakua I'm actually sick of all the generic, theme park, quest driven, non-social, garbage MMOs we keep getting. Its titles like these that give me something else to do. While I wait on some of the more promising MMOs this year. 


So like you here I sit waiting for Crowfall, Camelot Unchained and maybe Pantheon. 

Ceder
Ceder

Im interested but given the state of most of the sandbox survival genre games at the moment, especially the early access ones, I'm probably going to wait to see how it is received over the first few months. 

Neo_Wolf
Neo_Wolf

I'm looking forward to this, I just hope Thrall Pathing Ai can live up to the notion of settlements built up the sides of mountains..and they we don't find them all clustered at the bottom of the mountain walking into the cliff face oblivious as to how to use the stairs or ladders next to them lol

Morpayne
Morpayne

I was afraid they would cave to the QQ on the thrall system and it seems they're standing their ground, I'm glad they're putting Howard's art before the tears from the sensitive. 

dragonherderx
dragonherderx

@Morpayne All the QQ from what? There is going to be AI based thralls as well as player based thralls and they have stated that there will be both pve and pvp servers opened up.

Silverlock
Silverlock

I hate to admit it but I'll be buying this on the 31st. Any other lab rats who just can't wait?

Silverlock
Silverlock

@tanek_09 @Silverlock I loved minecraft but I just got sadder and sadder that I couldn't populate my creations. Now I'd rather have people move into my castles and fortified towns willingly but if I have to literally drag them in I can deal with that.

tanek_09
tanek_09

@Silverlock What they have so far looks good, but I am not sure I'll be jumping in right at the start.  Come summer, though, if it is on track and still seems to be something I want to play, I am guessing I'll have it already. :P

(In the meantime, I thank you in advance for your bug-hunting work to make it a better game for the rest of us.)

genghiskron
genghiskron

As much as I don't enjoy survival games, I might actually enjoy something like this. I've loved the Conan IP for years, loved AoC even though none of my gaming or real life friends played it at all cus they all played WoW. 


My thing is I hate, hate, hate, hate gathering like TONS of stuff just to craft up a house and have it completely obliterated by a dude trolling on one of these private servers. Now, if there are RP heavy and/or true "guild siege" style servers with like planned out sieging schedules, etc. and small/medium scale PvP in between over the resources... THAT would be an awesome experience especially in this setting and world. ESPECIALLY, if they can make the combat feel weight-y  and rewarding for hitting an enemy. That said, this is all incredibly conditional on the gameplay actually being pretty good and that has yet to be seen.


Definitely interested from that trailer and those awesome looking "god avatars" that was really neat and unique.

AiunTanks
AiunTanks

@genghiskron Yeah.  I simply don't have the time to dedicate to these kinds of games that other players obviously do, so it doesn't really matter what the game is, if it's got PVP I'm going to get destroyed by some asshole who's made it his entire life.  So I've stopped bothering.  Fuck that guy.

cromahr
cromahr

I think I'll try this. Currently playing ARK with my gf, and it's quite some fun. However, I always liked AOC, especially because, IMO, they did great with the atmosphere and staying true to the world REH created. Even though AOC had and still has some big downsides, to me, it was one of the most atmospheric MMOs.
So this might be a lot of fun! Not a big PVP-fan anymore, but if there is a PVE option or a chance to run small, custom servers (like with ARK), this might be a game I want to check out for a while.

Archebius
Archebius

@cromahr Yeah, there are both PvE and private servers. I'm hoping it will be similar to ARK, where especially in the early game, the environment will ruin your life. 

From the official site: "Play alone locally, or fight for survival and dominance in persistent multiplayer on public servers. Host your own server and invite others to join you in a world where you have full control of the rules and settings."

Bannex19
Bannex19

But will there be boobs?

Morpayne
Morpayne

@Bannex19 probly be the usual, boobs and butts but no bush or dongs. 

woolydub
woolydub

I'm really interested in the psychology of people that play these games that take hours to build something again and again only to have it torn down again and again with little to no repercussion to the destroyers. How many games is that fun for? Does a certain type of Stockholm Syndrome for these games take hold? Not everyone can be a pack leader in a game like this and there are more victims than victors. 

I'd really like to see the research papers that start happening soon revolving around these types of games

Nerdslayer
Nerdslayer

@woolydub Some people like the danger aspect in games, as it makes the game feel more "real". Though the unfortunate part is games like this often can be exploited, as evident in games like Day Z and Rust.

DugFromTheEarth
DugFromTheEarth

@woolydub If its PvE game mechanics that pose a threat to my creations... thats fine. That can be governed by a set of rules and systems that make it balanced and challenging.  If the game has a PvE server, ill be fine with that. I enjoy PvP battles, but I like them arena style. IE: Fight when I want to. If I wanted to pay money to have someone randomly abuse me, Helga on 5th street is much more appealing, and lets me use a safe word.

Gevah
Gevah

Interested if there is PVE option, building, crafting, exploring and customize the character, that's what i like to do, and if the game is class-less and level-less, that will be better ... anyway, i'm keeping an eye on this title.


tanek_09
tanek_09

@Gevah Not only a PvE option, but it is planned to allow people to run private servers, so that could open up all sorts of customization.

Hirku
Hirku

I'd be more excited if this was a completely offline single-player RPG with TSW quality storytelling, but I'm still rooting for it because I want Funcom to succeed.

Heh, that headline reminded me of a favorite quote from Robert Bloch, author of Psycho: "Despite my ghoulish reputation, I really have the heart of a small boy. I keep it in a jar on my desk."

Silverlock
Silverlock

@Hirku What do you mean if? You can play it solo with your own local server.

Silverlock
Silverlock

@tanek_09 @Silverlock @Hirku I see your point I was more focused on the single player part then the storytelling aspect. They do say on their website that you can play alone locally. 

I think what devs like about Survival sandbox's is that they don't have to put a lot of effort into story telling just game mechanics and lore.

Hirku
Hirku

@Silverlock @tanek_09 @Hirku What tanek said. : )

I'm still interested in CE, but a traditional Baldur's Gate sized RPG set in the Hyborian Age would make me much happier. Still, I'll take what Conan I can get.

tanek_09
tanek_09

@Silverlock @Hirku I don't think that is exactly what was meant. As great as it is that you will be able to have a private server (and possibly a singleplayer mode, though I don't know if that has been discussed yet), it does not exactly turn this into an "RPG with TSW quality storytelling".  Which is not a bad thing, it is just a different genre of game.

tanek_09
tanek_09

Even as a non-PvP person, I am really looking forward to what can be done with the base creation in this game.  I will say, I did not get the "voxel" feel from the trailer, though. The building options looked great, but it seemed more like using pre-made chunks (like ARK's, but good  :P ) rather than brick by brick.  

breetoplay
breetoplay moderator

@tanek_09 Yeah, the stuff at like 1:06 is where it struck me, it's just single bricks textured to look like more bricks!

nosz
nosz

@tanek_09 "But good"?

The building templates are totally like ARK (foundations, pillars, walls, stairs,...)!

The extra angles are also available per popular mod!

tanek_09
tanek_09

@nosz @tanek_09 Other than the angles for a roof and the one spiral staircase, not much has been added to structures in ARK since launch.  It may be true you can get more in mods, but unmodded ARK building is not exactly a shining feature of the game.  I hope they give it another pass at some point before launch, but if they plan to launch in April, I don't know that I see it happening.

Granted, Conan does look very similar to ARK in building mechanics, but from the video it looks like there are already more options.  I'll have to get my hands on it at some point to see if that is true, or if this video is more like pictures of fast food (looks good in the glamour shot for advertisements, but the reality tends to be less appetizing).

tanek_09
tanek_09

@nosz @tanek_09 Actually, I do. I am not a big fan of using mods unless they are just changes to the interface.  And with ARK being in Early Access, I am even less inclined to use mods.  The Wildcard devs do a good enough job breaking things all on their own.  :)

Archebius
Archebius

@nosz @tanek_09 I will say that you're missing out on some terrific stuff with mods. Not all of them are quality, and some are downright immersion shattering, but there is a ton of cool, lore-friendly content out there that makes the game unconditionally better. But, my wife doesn't like modding either, so I see where you're coming from.

And, even as a longstanding fan of ARK, modding it can be rough. An update that breaks a mod can take down a whole server, and then it's a painful process to figure out what mod did it to get your server back up, and then anything that relied on that mod is just gone.

2TonStreama
2TonStreama

@tanek_09 @nosz If you haven't used mods in Ark you're missing out on a vastly different playing experience. I admit that many games make mods sort of a pain, but they are pretty well managed in Ark. 

tanek_09
tanek_09

@2TonStreama I am happy to hear they are well managed in ARK, but as Archebius mentions, updates can and do break them.  From the forum posts, this seems like a fairly frequent occurrence, too (though possibly less frequent than it was months ago).  Plus it makes it harder to report issues with the base game.  Plus you have the worry that a mod will be abandoned and not fixed when an update does break it.

Back on topic a bit for this post, I hope Conan Exiles has just as good a modding community and they have a great time with the game.  I'm just not likely to use any of the mods.  :)

Ceder
Ceder

@2TonStreama @tanek_09 @nosz  What is more telling is that most ark videos still being put out these days by folks(sans here) are from modded servers because quite frankly, the game is rather anemic.  Once you start involving with mods you look back on servers and those that don't and just wince.

aboomwithaview
aboomwithaview

The PvE elements need to be an actual threat to set it apart from every other survival game out there with nothing to do but chop wood & gank others. 

That, the ip & the ability to setup a private server are the only reasons I will consider this as another early access survival game, all the vids about building/crafting dont do anything for me as ive seen it 100 times before, choppy choppy, gather, craft axe..meh


Please dont fail me on this Funcom, the drain on your other titles is apparent so dont let it be for naught.

Damonvile
Damonvile

@aboomwithaview That's what sets 7d2d apart from almost all of them. There's an actual threat from the environment. Even ark doesn't really do that well. Things are either easy to kill or impossible and you avoid them. You never really feel any danger.


PvP unless heavily regulated on private servers is just break ppls shit while they're off line.


So I'm in the same boat. If they have interesting combat with a world that creates a real threat I'll play it.

Jack Pipsam
Jack Pipsam

I will most likely get into it, if the price is right.
I am not huge on the genre, but I do like Funcom's work.

BalsBigBrother
BalsBigBrother

I am liking everything I hear and see about this game though still not enough to get into yet another survival early access.  If Funcom pull this off and get it through to release without any major blunders it will be a day one purchase for sure

KidWithKnife
KidWithKnife

@BalsBigBrother Heh, if Funcom manages to release without any major blunders it'll be a first for the company.  :P  Seriously though, I do hope they pull this one off.

Paraxamos
Paraxamos

I can only hope this turns out well for Funcom - if that project fails as well, oh men.

2TonStreama
2TonStreama

@breetoplay Yeah, Ark has made some cheap moves and pissed quite a few people off. They changed the genre for the better, but it's nice to see a larger studio coming in with some nicer quality. Ark is a beautiful game, but sometimes it tries too hard to be too many things and it has made a few missteps whether it be from their stupid idea of having a paid expansion for an EA game to their complete lack of official support in the modding community despite hiring the Primitive + guy to be the modding liason. That dude never responds in the modding channels. Colour me impressed with this game so far. 

breetoplay
breetoplay moderator

@Paraxamos Expecting this to do well -- there's a big market for a survival sandbox right now, ARK has pissed off way too many players, and the other attempts into the market have all been amateurish or low in scope. I don't even like the Conan IP and I'm consistently impressed with what they show, especially of the build mechanics.