Conan Unconquered is a real-time strategy game (RTS) that at best “means well,” but could have been much more.
Developed by Petroglyph Games and published by Funcom, the team behind the title have worked on acclaimed titles like Command & Conquer and Star Wars: Empire at War. The PC game puts you in control of one of three selectable heroes, one of them being Conan. Based on the Robert E. Howard series, which was later adapted to comics and a series of films starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, the player is tasted to either grow his/her army, marching your forces to lay waste against the enemy forces and local threats alike; or provide an adequate defense against waves of enemies that surround your camp.
Unlike a game like Warcraft III, you may not likely be able to do both in Conan Unconquered. While you can place hovels to increase capacity of your forces, they only grow your unit capacity by two. You can also have to plant to increase building capacity. So beyond people and building capacity, you also have to worry about wood in the form of a lumber yard, stone in the form of a quarry, animals, and food in the form of a hunter shack. Unfortunately, you can’t stack hunter shacks near each other.
You have to rely on your tech tree early on to gain any semblance of efficiency, which gets complicated and annoying in co-op mode when you and your ally have to coordinate to spend resources. The developers should have done better to compensate for both players. One can’t really defend and the other can’t creep effectively at the same time, at least early on. When building walls, the angles get jerky and should have far better range, which will likely be addressed in a future patch.
It’s going to take greater patience than usual to coordinate and stop the waves together as opposed to individually. There’s not as much a learning curve to the game rather a steeper trial-and-error to not get overwhelmed in later levels. Also keep in mind if you decide to creep, you still have to keep your base from being overrun. Space is a luxury and you’ll likely have to build your base from the inside out, mounting defenses and taking advantage of the rough terrain like mountains and forests to potentially bottleneck the enemy.
The game could have been much better if they made the mechanics less of a grind and simplified the tech tree. The game could been much more, but it hardly stands out as anything special. A fan of RTS and Conan may enjoy this, but the pacing could turn off more casual gamers.