EA SCOUT the last line of defense for buying on Steam's Early Access
by Marko Susimetsä
previewed on PC
Just a Man and His Will to Survive
Alana crouched and slipped behind a tall bush. She snatched up a few insects from the branches. As the hard shells crunched between her teeth, Alana peeked past the bush. A bonfire blazed by the lakeside, with two people standing beside it. The woman carried a stone sword similar to Alana’s, but the male... he had an iron mace.
While considering her options, Alana dismantled the bush and used the plant fiber to patch up her worn sandals and tunic. Then she picked up her wooden shield and sneaked ahead, grasping her sword. If only she could take them by surprise.
The woman heard her before she reached them. With a wild cry she came at Alana, swinging her crude weapon. Alana met the slash with her shield and swung her sword, taking the dark-skinned woman in the throat. But then the man was there, smashing down with his mace, shattering Alana’s shield and driving her to the ground.
Alana rolled aside when the man - silent, but with fury in his eyes - struck again and again. She stumbled onto her feet and ran backwards to get some distance. But the man came after her, crazed by the death of his mate. Alana stood her ground. It was not worth it to run away. Her life was worth nothing. Only the mace mattered.
When the man finally lay dead at her feet, Alana spat blood and heaved a long breath. The mace had fallen by the body. She lunged at it.
Only to see it disappear as if it had never been there.
And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night
My testing phase of Conan Exiles Early Access was done on a private server because of the well-known troubles with the official servers. It began with a man - who kind of looked like Jason Momoa playing Conan - walking across desert landscape to an almost naked woman hanging on a big cross. He frees her and the woman, whom I named Alana, falls down to find herself alone on a barely visible road. Her only option is to follow it and hope for the best.
Along the way, she begins to pick up every rock and dead tree branch that she can. Luckily, she soon finds greener pastures and can start ripping apart bushes until she has enough materials to build a crude axe. With that, she’s able to bring down trees to get wood and soon she’s wearing basic clothes and carries a wooden shield.
Unfortunately, the greener pastures are also inhabited by other creatures, almost all of them very eager to attack a newcomer. And when Alana dies, she respawns empty-handed in the desert and must start everything from the beginning. Well, almost everything: she does keep her skills and accrued experience. Later, when she learns how to craft a bedding, she will respawn at that location. And even later, after having crafted a shelter and a wooden box to store things in, the items stored in the boxes will remain even when everything Alana carries with her is lost. A smart girl keeps a spare set of clothes, tools and weapons available at all times.
The game has potential, but we're not ready to jump in with both feet. If the game interests you, look, but don't touch - yet.