Zero Punctuation: Age of Conan

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AngryMan:

I wonder if there's a way to design an MMO that encourages actual intelligent behaviour in its players? It'd be the breakthrough of all time...

Considering that these reviews alone attract idiots who post "first" their isn't much hope for such an MMO. Maybe if this future MMO shipped with a cyanide tablet, and a note expressly forbidding you to swallow said pill a might create a more intelligent player base (or an illiterate player base).

As for AoC couldn't agree more, please can someone make an action packed twitched based giant world which I can play for an hour now and then.

Perhaps Yahtzee is busy enjoying his newfound fame and pursuing other projects. Perhaps producing one video a week is too much work. Perhaps he's feeling the pressure to pour verbal acid over every game he reviews. This latest video furthers Yahtzee's growing trend towards humor over content. He's still really funny, quite insightful, and blows away other video reviews out there. It just seemed he missed some core issues with the game and spent too much time on fringes.

For example, he does not like dialogue from quest characters because it takes too long to get the quest. Yahtzee has always been big into story. An MMORPG tries to inject story and Yahtzee complains that he can't get through it fast enough. Besides, you can whip through story in AoC. Just keep pressing the '1' choice and you'll get the quest in under five seconds. Why he's spending precious video time on this (beyond it being funny) is not clear.

There are key issues he did not sufficiently discuss. The game is plagued with bugs. Some features such as spellweaving are ineffectual. He did not talk about the new weapon interaction positively or negatively.

I'd rather one review done well every two weeks that one review every seven days that is not Yahtzee's best. In any event, Yahtzee's second-best-quickie reviews are still darn good and superior to most other gaming resources out there.

So well done. Sort of.

Pretty good but...it seemed like he actually had fun with this lol. I was expecting another "Witcher" but I guess he's more patient now.

-and damnit I guess I'm going to need that music grown on me.

I have never played this game, also I have a hard time to even try and get the motivation to test it after reading some of the forum posts made by the teens who play it (or perverted young/middle aged/older people)
How do they get so upset when a character all of a sudden puts on a top and is not naked anymore or when they reduced the size of the female anatomy ... that was a real nerf.

Good video, also the music is starting to grow on me.

I have to be honest here. I do NOT agree with this review. I'm usually pretty in sync with the opinions given by Yahtzee, typically agree with a lot. But one point here annoys me.

You complain about the lack of "RPG" in MMORPG, but when a MMORPG actually attempts to make the world back into an "RPG", you complain about it. The dialog is part of the immersion. Its part of what "Role Playing" is all about. You play the role, you interact as that role, you don't click accept to agree with some random NPC's request to go hump an X number of monsters. WOW is not an MMORPG. It's an MMO, people seem to have forgotten what the "RPG" part actually is, because WOW lacks it in barrel full's.

In other points, I do agree that an MMORPG should be a team based thing. Purhaps a story based around a war, where you are training to be part of the force that answers this problem. Instead of one hero, why not a force of them. The story is probably wrong and I agree with this very much.

As far as AOC goes, you can't compare it to WOW at this point. WOW has had more then a fair amount of time to fix its issues with patchs. AOC just got started. Give it some time to fix up, and it'll be on the same track. WOW was once a buggy piece of garbage to, or perhaps people have forgotten what falling into mountains and off the world was like.

Possiably should have waited a little longer to review this game and gone with something else.

Heroic One:
Three races, twelve classes...
Have you ever played an rpg with a character creation screen?

I really like that there's an 'Age Of Conan' ad slapped up behind this review.

I personally loathe MMORPGs. A good RTS game is OK, but a game chock full of random nerdy griefing human garbage all able to 'interact' with you with a make-believe sword at will can never be much fun.

Basically the MMORPG 'fan base' (and a lot of the online gaming community in general) is composed of a whole bunch of people just like this one...
http://www.google.com/search?q=halo+kid

If you haven't seen this video yet, the cringe factor is palpable. Be warned.

Can't help but feel Vitalix is right... Yahtzee was never briliant at the whole review thing- usually preferring to skip lightly over most criticisms and focus on one or two. This one felt far more like a blog entry than anything else- a bit like Living in Oblivion. Yes, it was funny but it also felt tired. Maybe he's been having too many late nights.

Yahtzee has always been big into story. An MMORPG tries to inject story and Yahtzee complains that he can't get through it fast enough.

Yahtzee does not feel a story in which characters are just standing around town picking their nose is a good story, also, I doubt he even gives a damn about the story. My views are pretty close to him and when I played Guild Wars I payed no attention to the story, but while playing elder scrolls I payed attention to the story and was actually immersed in the story (not the actual game though). Also, Alone in the Dark was better.

the new intro is killing me. really.

It's like, at first it was just really annoying. Now its like 10 years of marriage to someone you've grown to despise. grating on everyones nerves.

Good fine professional review but either im just too tired today but I didn't find it as funny as I usual do, I was smiling. I liked it, just didn't laugh out loud.

Very nice review, really liked how he depicted some of the major issues with the game. I more or less agree that the game needs to be refined more (patched up).

YES!

My only problem with WoW was that i had to be a nudist Warlock. Now i can be a nudist Necromancer?! Im going to buy this and make one in every skincolor available for each gender!

Actualy, i think the skincolors represent different races each with their own classes, but i can stil make one in each gender.

Sayvara:

So far I have counted the following "sins" in Age of Conan.

- Foul language.
- Gore. Bloodspatter is everywhere.
- More gore. Fataliaties are meticulously modeled variations on how to end someone's life hard, brutally, and - in some cases - extremely messilly.
- Unrination. Yes, NPC's can be seen taking a piss.
- Prostitution, and plenty of it.
- Slavery.
- Alcohol.
- Drug use/drug addiction.
- Human sacrifice.
- Homosexuality, male and female.

So no... the Big Nerd is not here.

/S

Where do I sign up?

Chromed:
After this i'm really waiting for a good smackdown of EVE from Yahtzee. Or a loving. I don't know... Would be interesting to see nonetheless.

AoC was a very strange experience... It was trying to make the gameplay into something it's not, and that wore me out after just a week or 2 of casual (!) play. WoW is simply better at it, it doesn't try to hide it.

There's nothing wrong with EVE-Online aside from a purely technical perspective that mankind hasnt evolved a good enough internet yet to have the 2000+ ship battles to resolve with crashing whole nodes beyond that everything about EVE was deliberately designed to be like it is. EVE is not a game for WoW players who think there shouldn't be any cost to dying and that everyone should be nice to them.

EVE is a harsh social darwinist experiment where the people who smacktalk you can also kill you and steal everything you worked hard for, survival of the fittest or survival of who has the largest gang of people online at the time. The way it is meant to be played if people don't like it they can quit.

You know, there were other classes, which had more things put into them.The ranged attacks were pretty innovative, the fighting system was a little more interactive than most MMORPGers, but it is true that every MMORPG is trying to be World of Warcraft.

ronscoe:
You know, there were other classes, which had more things put into them.The ranged attacks were pretty innovative, the fighting system was a little more interactive than most MMORPGers, but it is true that every MMORPG is trying to be World of Warcraft.

maybe they are trying to be as sucessful as wow but they are not trying to be like it

I would state that while everything WoW has done has been done before it by EQ and lineage WoW refined them into crack cocaine for "everyone". I played WoW on and off enough for it to transform my standards "is this game different from WoW? If so is it different enough to be worth playing?" To my mind only EVE Online succeeds at this, with LoTR Online and DDO but only because of niche reasons, LOTRO lets me play with a musical instrument like in Zelda Orcerina of time and DDO has enough of the Dungeons and Dragons immersion on "hardest" difficulty.

If I had the money and the time I would play them instead of wow but because I don't I play EVE, I'll try out Age of Conan and Warhammer Online but in reality Im only looking forward to Stargate Worlds to suceed where Tabula Rasa failed.

I gotta agree on that in pretty much every RPG and MMORPG games there is a "Create your person in 1001 ways" yet most of it is just usless..

and i couldnt help but feeling when thos "Modern" RPGs laughted Baldurs Gate out. that Buldurs Gate kick all of their arses. And that Super Tech Custumization doesnt make a RPG good

Sid Meier:
I would state that while everything WoW has done has been done before it by EQ and lineage WoW refined them into crack cocaine for "everyone". I played WoW on and off enough for it to transform my standards "is this game different from WoW? If so is it different enough to be worth playing?" To my mind only EVE Online succeeds at this, with LoTR Online and DDO but only because of niche reasons, LOTRO lets me play with a musical instrument like in Zelda Orcerina of time and DDO has enough of the Dungeons and Dragons immersion on "hardest" difficulty.

If I had the money and the time I would play them instead of wow but because I don't I play EVE, I'll try out Age of Conan and Warhammer Online but in reality Im only looking forward to Stargate Worlds to suceed where Tabula Rasa failed.

waaait....you're not Sid Meier (I jest of course)

Um, what was I going to say? Oh yeah!

I'm not really an MMO player, never mind MMORPG, and the only MMO i actually sat down and played (and paid) for was City of Heroes, but that got old fast for me. However I know how addicting WoW can be, as a buddy of mine had an account and had me sit down and play it. the first ten minutes as one of those giant bull animal things i was at level ten and had to be pried away from the machine less I would be stuck there forever

I don't what it is, subliminal influences through the colors and text in the game? the game somehow taking over your mind by harnessing the monitors refresh rate and hypnotizing you somehow, I don't know, but if this sort of power got into the wrong hands... just imagine the ramifications.

The new intro/outro are good, but the old ones were better. The music picked specifically for the game worked better than the generic rock style it is now.

The World of Warcraft talk doesn't seem right, the way it was described means pretty much all genres are coping the best one in them.

Good review, wasn't going to get this game anyway. I'm firmly against Pay to Play, and this just polished the tomb stone on it.

PS: Solid Snake's Eye patch was on the wrong side =/

So far I have counted the following "sins" in Age of Conan.

- Foul language.
- Gore. Bloodspatter is everywhere.
- More gore. Fataliaties are meticulously modeled variations on how to end someone's life hard, brutally, and - in some cases - extremely messilly.
- Unrination. Yes, NPC's can be seen taking a piss.
- Prostitution, and plenty of it.
- Slavery.
- Alcohol.
- Drug use/drug addiction.
- Human sacrifice.
- Homosexuality, male and female.

Nice!!! Are there any fully naked ladies (and no, I do not consider them naked unless you can see any body part you want with no clothing infront of their sexual areas, they're not nude if they're in a bikini. )

Since when is slavery a sin? I think at some point int he old testimate it states that you can sell one of your daughters into slavery. I think it had to be the eldest or something.

Urination isnt an interesting addition unless your character can do it.

Homosexuality? Thats par for the course.

ronscoe:
You know, there were other classes, which had more things put into them.The ranged attacks were pretty innovative, the fighting system was a little more interactive than most MMORPGers, but it is true that every MMORPG is trying to be World of Warcraft.

From what I have read, the interactive part of melee involved attacking on the right, left, or down the middle, and the opponant could do the same defending. More emphasis on "little"...

Hey Jerkwad!

Review Eve! I know it's one of the Escapist's sponsors, but it's criminal that you compare all mmorpgs to the poor piss-stain of a game that is World of Warcraft.
I'd be fist-shakingly mad if you gave it a bad review, but are you going to let that stop you?
Most likely not! Be a man! Review the damned game!

Yours, in respectful admiration,
J.S.

j_meister:
Hey Jerkwad!

Review Eve! I know it's one of the Escapist's sponsors, but it's criminal that you compare all mmorpgs to the poor piss-stain of a game that is World of Warcraft.
I'd be fist-shakingly mad if you gave it a bad review, but are you going to let that stop you?
Most likely not! Be a man! Review the damned game!

Yours, in respectful admiration,
J.S.

Yeah, that'd be great. Spend a few DAYS playing a game with a learning curve made of lost souls and a gap between "noob" and "leet" that is wider than the gap between "Earth" and "The Fucking Sun". I'm sure it would be a very well-informed review.

However, I must say that Yahtzee figured out what AoC was all about a lot faster than I did ... much to my chagrin. I really wanted to like it, too ... but it took me 70some levels to realize that I didn't.

I don't wet myself laughing over these much anymore. It seems as the episodes have passed the sound of Yahtzee's voice has become more and more obnoxious... and the intro music is so ridiculously out of context for this type of video that it makes me want to climb the nearest clock tower with an RPD.

danaird:
I don't wet myself laughing over these much anymore. It seems as the episodes have passed the sound of Yahtzee's voice has become more and more obnoxious... and the intro music is so ridiculously out of context for this type of video that it makes me want to climb the nearest clock tower with an RPD.

whats an rpd?

Bob_F_It:

ronscoe:
You know, there were other classes, which had more things put into them.The ranged attacks were pretty innovative, the fighting system was a little more interactive than most MMORPGers, but it is true that every MMORPG is trying to be World of Warcraft.

From what I have read, the interactive part of melee involved attacking on the right, left, or down the middle, and the opponant could do the same defending. More emphasis on "little"...

It is more complex than hit right/centre/left, special attacks require sequential key presses to fire off. Plus as you level you have to attack in more than three directions to fire combos. As I said above it's still button mashing but it is more involving than fire and forget spells/moves.

Gift.

Selvec:
I have to be honest here. I do NOT agree with this review. I'm usually pretty in sync with the opinions given by Yahtzee, typically agree with a lot. But one point here annoys me.

You complain about the lack of "RPG" in MMORPG, but when a MMORPG actually attempts to make the world back into an "RPG", you complain about it. The dialog is part of the immersion. Its part of what "Role Playing" is all about. You play the role, you interact as that role, you don't click accept to agree with some random NPC's request to go hump an X number of monsters. WOW is not an MMORPG. It's an MMO, people seem to have forgotten what the "RPG" part actually is, because WOW lacks it in barrel full's.

In other points, I do agree that an MMORPG should be a team based thing. Purhaps a story based around a war, where you are training to be part of the force that answers this problem. Instead of one hero, why not a force of them. The story is probably wrong and I agree with this very much.

As far as AOC goes, you can't compare it to WOW at this point. WOW has had more then a fair amount of time to fix its issues with patchs. AOC just got started. Give it some time to fix up, and it'll be on the same track. WOW was once a buggy piece of garbage to, or perhaps people have forgotten what falling into mountains and off the world was like.

Possiably should have waited a little longer to review this game and gone with something else.

In relation to the RP in MMO's...I was always under the impression that this came from your interactions with the other players themselves. i.e. Actually doing the work yourself? Like taking the time to actually looking up what backstory of the setting can be found and applying it in such a way that isn't going to look massively implausable such as being a mighty gnomish conquerer and leader of the known world, with no IC way of actually backing this up. Unless you're deliberately RP'ing a mental patient. The game world is just the setting, how much interaction and immersion you want in the game is entirely up to -you-. Although, maybe a little more support for the RP servers in WoW and other mmmos wouldn't be a bad thing. As it stands, many consist of little more than a few guilds worth of genuine RP'ers with a lot of others who come for the more 'mature' environment without any interest in RP themselves, this is mostly prevalent on the RP/PvP style servers it seems.

Having played AoC for a bit, I got the distinct impression from all the dialogue trees and just the general effort that went into the city of Tortage and surroundings, that, if they had wanted to, they could have made a damn good -single player- RPG, rather than the resulting MMO.

yourkie1921:

So far I have counted the following "sins" in Age of Conan.

- Foul language.
- Gore. Bloodspatter is everywhere.
- More gore. Fataliaties are meticulously modeled variations on how to end someone's life hard, brutally, and - in some cases - extremely messilly.
- Unrination. Yes, NPC's can be seen taking a piss.
- Prostitution, and plenty of it.
- Slavery.
- Alcohol.
- Drug use/drug addiction.
- Human sacrifice.
- Homosexuality, male and female.

Nice!!! Are there any fully naked ladies (and no, I do not consider them naked unless you can see any body part you want with no clothing infront of their sexual areas, they're not nude if they're in a bikini. )

Full frontal, except the genital areas on both males and females which are covered with a kind of loincloth thing. If they had 1000% nudity, I'm sure the game would have gotten an AO rather than the 18+ it get's most places.

GothmogII:

Full frontal, except the genital areas on both males and females which are covered with a kind of loincloth thing.

So, topless then. The sort of thing you see in most national newspapers.

The_root_of_all_evil:

GothmogII:

Full frontal, except the genital areas on both males and females which are covered with a kind of loincloth thing.

So, topless then. The sort of thing you see in most national newspapers.

Pretty much, yup.

@Gothmogll:

Fully agreed on RP in MMOs. The onus is on the players. It's been a long time since I spent any time in WoW as part of an organization that didn't involve forums, story posting and character development that required spending time outside of the game engine. And having only played the beta of AoC I didn't get to see the topless ladies. I guess they were saving that for production or something.

@Everyone who doesn't like the opening:

The previous reviews, for me, now have this nostalgic amateurish feel to them, like Yahtzee hadn't quite landed in the arena of Internet fame and credible notoriety. Now his reviews are bookended with professional dressings that put him in a ring with Adam Sessler and that yapping wench Morgan Webb, whose arse our hero would most decidedly kick, especially in WoW. Horde all the way.

Fantastic review. Gave me a smile to see Baldur's Gate, again.

The9mm:

first off: dont make your rethorical questions look like real ones
you are putting words in my mouth
i dont say you would have to play every class but develop at least a notion of the needs and strengths and weaknesses of other classes

Don't get your panties in a twist, I didn't mean it literally. My point was just that you're asking a little much in a casual review.

also i think you should have played a level 70 character in wow just to get feel of the endgame
you should have participated in a raid
and you should have done arena
otherwise you dont have a clue about wow

I disagree. Endgame (arena included) is another part of the game entirely and, again, takes a considerable amount of time to get to. Reviewing the earlier stages of an MMORPG serves to provide a person with information on how they'll be spending that time, which is important information to know. If you don't like how grinding to 70 works, you're not going to spend all that time grinding a character to 70 just for endgame. I agree that before reviewing World of Warcraft one should do raiding first, since it's a core part of gameplay and can be done early on, but this isn't a World of Warcraft review. It's an Age of Conan review. I haven't played much of the game myself, but as far as I understand it there's not really an equivalent of raiding in it.

and if you dont have the time to play all levels in aoc, go ahead and borrow a friends character, that should give you an impression
that is all

Yes, because we all have friends with high level AoC characters.

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