Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures Q&A

IGN PC has published a four-page Q&A with Funcom’s Gaute Godager, in which quite a bit of new information is revealed about their upcoming RPG, Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures. A snippet to follow:

Q: Will players be strongly encouraged to party up? What kinds of group gameplay features are planned?

A: Yes they will. The development team has always been a strong believer in pushing people together in a friendly way, in the online game. There will be team match making, guild match making, PvP match making, formation gameplay for teams, PvP mini-games, social building of villages, massive RTS-like guild encounters and so forth. There will be substantial experience point bonuses for teaming, though it is not the only option. You can solo all the way, if you want.

In the multiplayer part of the game (with between 1000-1500 players per “server”) being with other players is more fun, as I see it. This then, is a social game, too. I think the major step-up is found in the formations. Not only are these useful in a group / party setting of 4-6 people. The nice thing about them is that they offer protection against “knock-back” effects of larger monsters / charge attacks. In addition to that they give a substantial ability bonus (as in “buff”) to the members. They offer special attacks (from charge-attacks when mounted, to firing a massive volley of arrows) and finally – they give you one, great collision “volume” usable to protect the “softer players” (Mages and their like ;p).

In addition, when choosing guild class, at level 40 you can choose the “Commander” class. This will enable you to increase the size of your party. When two commanders team up, the party can become the size of 10 people!

Finally, but most importantly, we offer a Master-apprentice system. Here you may include a lower level player in your party, and “sponsor” her or him with levels. This boosts the lower level player’s hit-points and power – without giving access to the level locked areas or powers. This is – we think – the most useful option to really let friends play together even though they gain levels at different speeds.

We naturally offer also the traditional class interdependencies, where you are unique. With players having around 40 classes to chose from, each with individual, distinct, powers – you are always needed in a team.

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