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Conan Exiles Is Still Very Early

Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early
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As the sun rises and the ocean churns, preparing to consume all with the aid of global warming, so too do new early access survival games invariably top the charts on Steam. Conan Exiles is the latest, and well, it’s certainly early.

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It’s not that Conan is busted. The game has a big, atmospheric world, serviceable collecting and crafting, interesting lore, and some creative creature design. It also offers you tons of ways to play, from single-player and multi-player to custom rule sets, role-playing, and experimental options. Also there sure are some dicks.

I managed to hop onto a server for a little while, craft some pants, kill some stuff, run from some other players, and meet a really great turtle. The fibers knitting those elements together—namely, server connectivity and general polish—are the problem. They’re like, well, the rinky dink first items you assemble from grass, shit, and dreams in a survival game.

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Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early

The first time I tried to connect to a server, for instance, the world wouldn’t load in. I got stuck staring at something resembling a sand castle abandoned by a petulant child. I could see an outline of the game’s massive desert playground, but that was it. This lasted for about five minutes before the game kicked me back to the server select screen.

Once I made it onto a server, I encountered a form of lag players generally refer to as “rubberbanding.” That is, you take some steps forward, and then the game flings you back, or vice versa. It happened to me occasionally and wasn’t too severe, but after a few times, it got hella annoying. Random bursts of lag and graphical glitches were also not uncommon as I moved through the world.

Combat’s also pretty “eh,” and there’s a general hollowness to movement, a lack of physicality that’s supremely disappointing in a game supposedly about the most barbaric barbarians to ever barb.

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I’m far from the only one having issues, though mine are not nearly as bad as what some people are reporting:

Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early
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Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early
Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early
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Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early

So basically, Conan shows promise, but it might not quite be ready for primetime. I’ve seen a handful of people try desperately to anoint it the de facto Ark: Survival Evolved killer. So far, Conan definitely reminds me of Ark, but Ark is much further along these days. Given Conan’s focus on lore and intriguing strangeness, it could very well evolve into a game that’s more up my alley than Ark. For now, though, I recommend taking a wait-and-see approach with it.

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Oh, but I was serious when I said I really like this turtle:

Illustration for article titled iConan Exiles /iIs Still Very Early
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Look at those little arms! And the way he stares at the ground, mouth agape, as though even he is exasperated by his own, evolutionarily questionable existence. Best video game turtle since that one I accidentally punched to death at the start of Crysis. 13/10.

You’re reading Steamed, Kotaku’s page dedicated to all things in and around Valve’s wildly popular PC gaming service. Games, culture, community creations, criticism, guides, videos—everything. If you’ve found anything cool/awful on Steam, send us a message to let us know. 

Kotaku senior reporter. Beats: Twitch, streaming, PC gaming. Writing a book about streamers tentatively titled "STREAMERS" to be published by Atria/Simon & Schuster in the future.

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DISCUSSION

gokartmozart89
gokartmozart

But penises and boobs!