Set in the unforgiving domains of Conan the Barbarian, Conan Exiles is a brutal game of survival and violent combat that's sure to jumpstart your adrenaline dosage. If you grew up in the '80s, or are a fan of the action heroes of the decade, then you're surely familiar with Conan and are probably amazed at the possibilities an open-world Conan game could bring. "Could" being the keyword here, because, as we’re going to see in a while, Conan Exiles isn’t all it aspired to be.
About the game
Conan Exiles is an open-world survival RPG. Like we said before, the game's based on the Conan the Barbarian series, made popular by the homonymous Arnold Schwarzenegger movies. The game begins with the player character being saved by Conan himself and setting off in an adventure across the scorching Exiled Lands. The game has a heavy emphasis on exploration and combat, and the setting is adequately large and well-populated to keep you invested.
Another great feature is the character creation system, allowing the player complete player not only in looks, but also race and even religion, all of which play a role in how your character grows. Crafting is also an important gameplay element, as is survival and resource management. In later updates, the game also added pets that become invaluable travel companions.
The ages of Conan
Fans of the Barbarian hero are surely familiar with the 2008 game Age of Conan. That game was the first attempt to bring Conan into a modern gaming audience, and it did so following the standard MMORPG formula of games, questing and dull combat included. While developers Funcom did everything they could to create a more dynamic combat system, they wouldn’t really grasp that concept until they released Conan Exiles. Instead of trying to be a massive multiplayer world like in Age of Conan, Exiles aims at a more conservative single-player experience. That doesn't mean the game doesn't have a multiplayer mode, it's just that the Exiled Lands are a massive expansion that is enjoyable to traverse on your own and don't need a constant internet connection to do so. Also, unlike Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures, Conan Exiles is available on all major platforms, so you can play it on your favorite console.
Featuring robust RPG elements and a well-crafted open-world, Conan Exiles is an enjoyable game that’s only been getting better since it first released. The game fell short for many reviewers back when it came out due to a clear lack of content, something the developers have been trying to remedy with patches and new elements, like the Frozen North, Highlands and Volcano biomes. The lack of a conventional class system also means that every character becomes a blank slate. This can be a blessing or a curse depending on your playstyle, but the ultimate truth is that it also eliminates that additional complexity that comes with balancing classes and attributes in more traditional RPGs.
Graphics and visuals: Powered by Unreal Engine 4, Conan Exiles is quite the looker. All of the biomes are very detailed and the art direction sticks closely to what we saw in the Schwarzenegger movies. Character customization is quite thorough and the results are satisfactory, with good character models and fluid animations. The fauna also looks nice, and the diversity in species means that you won’t be stuck seeing the same crocodile a million times.
Gameplay: If you like games like Ark, then you’re likely very familiar as to what to expect from Conan Exiles in terms of gameplay. Just like Ark Survival Evolved, crafting and survival play a vital role when exploring the map, and it also includes beast taming and hunting to keep things interesting. The hostile settlements found throughout the map will keep you entertained for a long time, and the NPCs provide quest that gives your survival adventure an added layer of meaning.
Sound: It wouldn’t be a Conan game without its dose of powerful, epic orchestra music, and Conan Exiles surely delivers in that department. While short for an open-world game, the OST provides enough emotion to go along with your thrills and enhance the Conan feeling of the game.
Download Conan: Exiles
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP