AoC Server Merges: Is the Sky Falling Yet?



The announcement that Age of Conan was merging their servers drastically was
echoed all over the internet.  My trusty Google alerts have held fast under
the barrage of blogs, news blips, and internet posts, each attempting to slam
one more nail in the coffin of a game that hasn't been live a year yet. 

Why the net wide freak out?

Stating that AoC is closing out over half their servers does sound like a
fairly doom and gloom sort of announcement, I'll give the naysayers that.  The vast array of server
choices were necessary at launch after an encouraging initial sale of the game
but once the shiny newness wore off, many were headed back to older games or off
to check out the new ones and this left AoC server populations looking more than
just a little grim.  A staggering 48 servers, spanning across regions, were
all open for business and yet it seemed like no one was around and this
panicked a lot of players and made the game feel a lot more isolated than it
actually was.  Who
wants to play a massively multi-player game that no one else is playing?

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Tortage is actually seeing some action again!

I haven't yet played a MMORPG that has never merged servers at some point and
yet the term seems to hold a stigma that convinces us that this surely is the
beginning of the end.  Mythic dodged this stigma somewhat with Warhammer
Online by "encouraging" free character transfers to selected servers. 
While the cunning herding of characters eased the fears of some players, others
still saw it as a sign that WAR was also doing badly.  People start hearing
about declining populations and safety measures being put in place to protect
what is left, and they get worried and companies frantically

The truth is that server merges are very common and not at all unexpected
after a game launch.  MMOGs generally experience a burst of excitement and
high head counts at their release and for the first couple of months after. 
Not being overly prepared for this would be a sin in the eyes of the community
so of course developers are going to make sure there is plenty of room for
everyone.  Inevitably, subscriptions will decline and this leaves servers
with lightened loads scaring off more players who are unwilling to ride the wave
of gaming ups and downs.  To keep the server communities healthy for both
the players and the marketplace, merges are needed.

Does this mean that Age of Conan is doomed to close soon? 

I really
don't think so.  Age of Conan is still launching in other countries which
tends to be a good sign.  While it didn't hit mega success in North
America, it still holds a fairly decent following world wide and the game
continues to anticipate a platform launch.  There have been rumors
regarding the possibility that AoC will go free-to-play but these are
unsubstantiated and

came up recently
when a bug in the subscription page was caught.  With

other projects
on Funcom's agenda, shutting down a game that still creates
revenue would just be a poor business decision.

Post merge, Age of Conan is running 20 servers across the globe (just
slightly fewer than EverQuest II currently has) including the 2 new "fresh
start" servers that allow for players to start over with a clean slate. 
Character transfers have also opened up for those who would like to make their
home on other servers, further opening up opportunites for players to find where
they are most comfortable.

Have the changes helped?  I've personally hopped around on a few of the
servers just to get a feel for what the populations are like and am very
encouraged.  Global chat is active, guilds are beefing up their ranks, and
people are finding groups for various tiers of content.  This has been the
breath of fresh air that we needed while we await new free content and look
forward to a future expansion!

Find Where Your Characters Landed

New server name is marked in bold followed by the list of servers that
were merged into the new server.

US Servers:

  • Set (PvE)
  • Damballah
  • Bardisattva
  • Dagoth
  • Derketo
  • Hanuman
  • Wiccana (PvE)
  • Mannanan
  • Ajujo
  • Thog
  • Zug
  • Omm
  • Gwahlur (PvE - Oceaninc)
  • Tyranny (PvP)
  • Scourge
  • Bluesteel
  • Stormrage
  • Deathwhisper
  • Doomsayer
  • Shadowblade
  • Cimmeria (PvP-RP)
  • Bane
  • Bloodspire (PvP - Oceanic)
  • Hyperborea

EU Servers:

  • Crom (PVE)
  • Ymir
  • Bori
  • Bloodbrand (Ahriman)
  • Dagon
  • Hyrkania (PVE-RP)
  • Fury (PvP)
  • Battlescar
  • Wildsoul
  • Soulstorm
  • Twilight
  • Aquilonia (PvP-RP)
  • Corinthia
  • Mitra (PvE)
  • Ibis
  • Asura
  • Aries (PvP)
  • Titus
  • Asgard (PvP-RP)
  • Ishtar (PvE)
  • Ferox (PvP)
  • Strix
  • Stygia (PvP-RP)
  • Zingara (PvE)
  • Indomitus (PvP)

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Age of Conan: Unchained Game Page.

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