Conan Chop Chop Preview
When you think Conan the Barbarian, you generally don’t picture light-hearted fun. Severing heads is more his style, definitely not the kind of imagery you hand over to your kids. All that’s about to change with the upcoming Conan Chop Chop from developer Mighty Kingdom and publisher Funcom.
I had the opportunity to attend a hands-off preview of the game, and the developers are giddy with anticipation at unleashing this new image of Conan. First announced in 2019, Conan Chop Chop is a cartoony, somewhat silly isometric action game. It’s characters aren’t quite stick figures, but close. Maybe somewhere between Legos and line drawings. In any case, they have a lot of cute personality.
The developer describes Conan Chop Chop as a roguelite party game. It can be played by a single player but the game really shines with a party of four (there are no AI party members). Played solo, Conan Chop Chop will be challenging, but not impossible.
Hilarity in Hyboria
Conan Chop Chop follows many conventions of third-person action games, so players will have no trouble jumping in. There’s a central hub town where characters can visit the blacksmith and upgrade weapons. There are class trainers there as well. Once a mission starts, though, players can’t retreat back to town. Unless they die. Conan Chop Chop is a roguelite, so they’ll retain some XP and items after death.
There’s a bit of lite city building in Conan Chop Chop, as your hub town can be upgraded as well.
Players can select from four characters: Conan, an all around balanced fighter; Belit, an archer; Pallantides, a tank; and Valeria, a fast, rogue-type. The developers noted that in a party of four, there can only be one of each character. Of course, each character can wield a wide range of weapons and has an equally broad selection of special moves, buffs, and abilities. Combat is fast and frenetic. Characters are always on the move and the stream of enemies is constant. The developers claim, with tongue firmly in cheek, that there are “trillions” of weapon, armor, and item combos to play with.
No Two Games are the Same
While each run is an attempt to defeat the evil sorcerer Thoth-Amon, procedurally generated levels and dungeons make every playthrough unique. In the hands off demo, we didn’t get to see a boss battle, but even some of the powerful mini-bosses were plenty challenging for the party. The varying playstyles of the four person team really come into their own when surrounded by different enemy types, each with specific weaknesses. When moving from exteriors to the dungeons, the view switches to a more top-down style, making it easier to see traps and other hazards.
It was clear from the demo that the folks at Mighty Kingdom have a lot of love for their little Barbarian. Conan Chop Chop takes the violent world of Conan and passes it through a family-friendly filter. The result is a game that has appeal for Conan fans, gamers with a fondness for action roguelites, and anyone with a sense of humor. Either in single player mode, couch co-op or online, Conan Chop Chop looks like fun.
Conan Chop Chop comes to PC, PlayStation, Xbox and Switch on March 1, 2022.
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