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(This PvP system has been discontinued since before launch, only remains here for historical purposes)
The dark and dangerous lands of Hyboria that have seen Conan rise to the throne of Aquillonia make up a treacherous and deceitful world where even the most petty or trivial of disagreements will invariably be settled by the blade (not uncommonly from behind whilst the victim is unawares!) Something is always at stake when reputations are forged by force of steel or the ingenuity of will. In Age of Conan the player versus player combat will always have equally vicious consequences and a bloody purpose that will always ensure you have something worth fighting for.
When we came to think about PVP in Age of Conan we wanted to ensure that it reflected that dark and hostile environment. We want to make sure that there will always be something at stake when a player decides to make a name for themselves in the Border Kingdoms. Likewise though, PVP still has to be fun, and no one really likes losing their hard earned possessions, so we have a very special system of Blood Money that operates in the PVP areas.
The Blood money system Edit
Blood Coins are effectively the currency of combat in the Border Kingdoms, tokens taken from the dying corpses of your foes. These Blood Coins are a mark of victory amongst combatants that will serve as bragging rights, status symbols and also a very useful currency in itself. When you travel to the dangerous and blood soaked Border Kingdoms your passage there must be paid for. When you first enter the Border Kingdoms the coin that would be used to pay for that passage is not taken away, but is converted into Blood Coin. Blood Coins is effectively a separate currency to your normal coin.
Defeating other players in PVP combat will result in you being able to loot some or all of the Blood Money that they earned from their previous fights. Everyone in the Border Kingdoms will have some Blood Money value. This means that everyone who enters the Border Kingdom has something to lose should they find themselves on the wrong end of an opponents assault. Blood Coin will also supply another way for players to know where they rank against their fellow players above and beyond a simple count of kills. The treasured Blood Coin torn from the body of a defeated renowned player killer will garner them more fame (or notoriety!) then just picking on easy targets.
Also your Blood Coins are even more then just a token of your stature with the bow, blade or mystical arts. Blood Coins will be used to purchase the PVP feats you earn access to from special vendors in the Border Kingdoms. These special PVP abilities will only be purchasable with Blood Coin. You will have to fight to earn the Blood Coin to pay for these new skills that your combat with other players has earned you access to.
You will be able to hiding away your valuables when entering PVP as well and you will be allow you to save something before being beheaded. Therefore some of your blood coin will always be available to your foes (the balance of this will be decide through beta). Not all of your Blood Coins will be able to be traded away, stored, or otherwise hidden away from those that would see you as a trophy, or a fat payday if your skills in combat have earned you a reputation already! The more battles you win and more scalps you collect, the greater the reward others will find in tracking you down and taking your blood money from your freshly slain corpse.
In addition all PVP combat earns your character separate PVP exp that goes towards earning your twenty PVP levels and gaining access to special feats and abilities that are exclusive to PVP. This means that only those who truly excel at dispatching other players to their bloody deaths will be able to gain an extra edge on players who gain their equipment only in the safer havens, away from the Border Kingdoms. Only by proving your worth against your fellow player will you be able to gain these PVP-centric feats.
The Bloody Conclusions on PVP Edit
We feel that with this system the day-to-day PVP in the Border Kingdoms will also have a real and genuine purpose independent of the greater struggles that will come around the Keeps, Towers and resources. Reputations will be won and lost. Blood will be spilt and there will always be a reward for hunting down others, and of course the risk that comes with it. The more victories you secure and more foes you vanquish the more your Blood Coins will be eyed by envious souls intent on cutting your throat and your purse!
The Border Kingdoms will certainly not be for the faint of heart!
Also, as a final note for now on PVP we wanted to assure all the PVP fans out there that we will have at least some more 'free for all' style PVP servers once the game goes live. How many will depend on the popularity, but we have the systems being prepared that will let us allow PVP content outside of the Border Kingdoms as well.
All info from