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Reader Comments (5)

Posted: Mar 9th 2008 1:10PM Rollins said

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Any moment now? Really? Sweet.

I'm pretty sure that open beta for this game's going to be a massive charlie-foxtrot, but it should still be fun. I've been worried about whether the game's going to have a relatively smooth launch or a painful Vanguard-esque one, but being able to give it a shot (and hopefully help with bug-testing) before it comes out will do much to allay my fears.

Posted: Mar 9th 2008 1:51PM Krystalle Voecks said

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Yeah, I'm not so sure I believe "any moment now" but I can't deny that a goodly chunk of the team here are chomping at the bit to check out AoC.
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Posted: Mar 9th 2008 3:07PM TwistedBishop said

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There's really no way that it could have a Vanguard-esque launch. Age of Conan is well funded and self-published by Funcom, in contrast to Sigil being broke and kicked out the door early by SoE.

Posted: Mar 10th 2008 11:48AM Triskelion said

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Funcom released AO, which became the poster child for "how not to screw up an MMOG launch". Don't be so sure to think that they've learned anything either. Look at Flagship Studios, Hellgate:London, they were all former Blizzard people and that launch was massive fail.

Funcom has a lot to address in the next 60 days, and I would expect a large patch on launch day as well since the game will go gold far in advance of that date.

And with regards to Sigil; they ran out of money - bottom line. SOE did not take over VG until well after the launch. Brad McQuaid even went public and told the community that the game was being launch stillborn due to financial issues.

The moral of my story; I've been involved in too many beta's and launches to think that any developer has learned much from their, or their competitions, past thus avoiding the typical MMOG launch/design missteps.

Posted: Mar 11th 2008 4:22AM TwistedBishop said

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Actually, I think AO is a good example of how Funcom has changed. That game was your typical MMO release disaster combination of launching before it was done and not listening to beta testers. We've seen the exact opposite attitude with Age of Conan's development.

Sigil ran out of money and their new publisher, Sony, wouldn't fund them for extra development time. Hellgate was a very similiar situation of financial pressure and publisher obligation to hit the Halloween release date. I don't want to remove all blame from the developers, and perhaps those two games would never have turned into anything good, but they were very clearly not ready for launch and were denied time to finish.

Age of Conan simply doesn't have that problem. If we look at games that are forced to release on a certain date (the yearly sports titles or movie tie-ins), they're almost always underwhelming or plain bad. Then we can turn to developers who have the luxury of releasing a product when it's finished (the Blizzards and Valves of the world) and see the level of quality they manage to attain with every single release.

Funcom has been showing off the game quite a bit in the past couple months, whether it be to journalists invited over to Oslo or through live demos at conventions, and the reports have been universally positive. While no one can say for certain how Age of Conan will look at release, everything we've seen so far paints it as an exceptional game.


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