Can you feel it coming? With less than a month until Conan's
release, the pressure cooker of excitement building for the new MMOG by Funcom is about to blow its load. At least part of this excitement stems from the fact that Age of Conan
deals with mature themes. Unlike the cartoony World of Warcraft
and cutesy Hello Kitty Online, Age of Conan
is embracing what they call a "dark, decadent, twisted and corrupt version of Euro-Asian history." Aside from the prominent head lopping and blood letting we're also getting a side dish of sex; something we haven't really seen before in a prominent, commercial MMOG.
The idea of sex in video games is not new. You can go as far back as text based adventures like Farmer's Daughter
on the Commodore 64, crude, arcade-style games like Custer's Revenge
for the Atari 2600, or the multi-platform adventure game series Leisure Suit Larry
that first kicked off back in 1987. Many early titles were so graphically crude that they left absolutely everything to the imagination. But as technology has evolved, so have the dirty minds of developers. And where dirty minded developers have come up short, many gamers have created modifications to fulfill their fantasies. Would you like some hot coffee
while you wait to download the Lara Croft nude patch
Given the heavy censorship present in the games industry it's actually surprising that Age of Conan
will ship with a few lewd features in tact. With an M rating, Conan
is one of the first MMOGs that's pre-screening its playerbase and tossing out the kiddies (along with the associated revenue stream from their parents). So what are the risqué features in Age of Conan
and what will their implementation mean for future MMOGs? If Age of Conan
is successful can we expect other developers to push the envelope further, or has someone already beaten them to the punch? If you're easily offended you may wish to skip what follows after the break.