Wednesday, May 28, 2008

[video games] Okay, so I've got Age of Conan

Sethek, Stygian Tempest of Set

It's pretty late, and I've only just started playing (level 10, here, which is basically nothing), so I'm only going to give a few quick impressions, here.

First of all, my only character so far is the dude above: Sethek, of the sinister, pseudo-Egyptian Stygian culture (I note that they're not using the word "race", here). His class is Tempest of Set, meaning I get to call upon my malevolent snake god to annihilate my enemies with lightning, all the while yelling "SET IS THE BEST GOD" at the screen. It's pretty badass. I'll note here that the various cultures all have different available classes. The Stygians, being the only people who would worship Set, have exclusive access to the Tempest of Set class. They're also the only people dabble in sorcery, so the three non-priestly spellcaster classes are all theirs, too. I normally bitch about this kind of thing, but in this case it's just good, respectable loyalty to the source material.

Anyway, Age of Conan is definitely fun. Hell, Charlie went all the way up to 14th level while I was at work (surprising absolutely no one by playing a Stygian necromancer), and I'm most definitely up past my bedtime. That said, it's not by any means a revolutionary new kind of MMORPG. It follows the basic model established by Everquest, and even carries over the now-standard refinements of World of Warcraft (seriously, Blizzard should try and claim patent rights on yellow question marks as a cash-in-your-quest-item-here indicator). Really, the main things Age of Conan adds to Warcraft's formula are actiony combat and nipples.

Okay, that ain't even close to fair, really. There's a lot more to talk about, but I need to go to sleep in a minute. So for now let me just warn everybody about something kind of unusual about this game that I think hasn't gotten enough attention: its goddamned hard drive requirements.

Hard Drive: 32 GB free space

Yes, Age of Conan requires 32 gigs of free space. I have no idea why. My whole goddamned Steam installation is barely more than half that. Does anybody out there (who hasn't recently bought a new machine or HD) actually have 32 empty gigs just lying around? I had to buy a new damned external drive in order to install this freaking thing.

Right, it's 2:30am, and I've got work tomorrow. I've got a lot more--good and bad--to say about AoC, but for now, I need some sleep.

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