During PAX East 2017 I was able to meet up with Jens Erik, the Community Manager at Funcom for Conan Exiles, and had a conversation about some of the things that are coming down the road with Conan Exiles, and some recent happenings with the company.
We first started talking about some of the recent announcements about thralls and what I would like to see being done with them. For those that don't know what thralls are, they are NPC you can either kill or tame to make crafting of certain items faster pending on which thrall you get. They can also assist you in fights with other NPCs. It is confirmed that 'tamed' thralls, and non-tamed thralls, will take more roles in Conan Exile. So far what's planned is that they, thralls, will be able to do minor things like patrolling the upper walls of a base, for your archer thralls, or even opening up some of the larger doors if you're coming into the base from a long travel. Since I mostly play single player and enjoy building in games, I asked about the notion of making it so that tamed thralls can gather resources so you can save some time. His response was that there are no plans for your thralls to do that yet, but a couple of the people working on the game is somewhat interested in doing something like that, but not guaranteed yet.
Another interesting aspect that we talked about was a purging system that will be added to the game via thralls, and it will add a whole new dynamic to the game. For the servers that have it turned on, NPC's will be gathering around the perimeter of the map for a certain amount of days. After the game gives you a certain amount of time after a proper warning, the NPC's will move inwards onto the actual map and start laying waste to whatever and whomever they may come across.This will cause tribes to beef up their defences in preparation for the oncoming assault. There was also mention of actual people from the Conan universe making an appearance in the purge, but we didn't talk about whether or not they will be tamable.
We then moved onto some other things that are planned down the road for Conan Exiles. I brought up the fact that I know several games similar to Conan Exile have a really strong community based around mods, and whether you hate them or love them, they can bring a different look to the game. So I asked him about his thoughts on the modding community overall and how it could fit within the Conan Exiles community. In response, he mentioned that he plans on putting more focus and attention on mods and the modding community down the road.
Recently Funcom has agreed to put an addition 5-10 million dollars, USD, into Conan Exiles which will help the game out a lot. The main feature that was mentioned was that they were able to add a couple of people to both the North Carolina and European offices.
The last two things that we talked about was future avatars, an end game giant creature you can summon for x amount of time-based on what religion you choose in the character creation, and the new magic system that will be added to the game down the road. Now he commented that there were going to be at least two more avatars being added to the game, but he wasn't able to tell me exactly what they were going to be. Now the new magic system that will be added to the game will be interesting. The magic system will be based on how weak your character will get thanks to how much corruption your character has in the game at that point. One type of magic that will be added will be necromancy, which allows you to bring the dead back to life. He did mention that he didn't know if the magic will be based on the percentage of corruption or if you needed to have a certain amount of health missing thanks to the corruption. Corruption is a side effect of going into the cave systems, the more 'corruption' you get, the lower your max health will be until you cure it. Either way, it will be interesting to see what happens down the road with it.
Overall it was a fun experience talking with Jens Erik and learning more about what's to come down the road with Conan Exiles. I'm interested to see what avatars will be added to the game along with the three they have now. I'm also excited to see what they do with the magic system since they're trying to be true to the Conan universe and only allow you to have magic if you're weakened.