GC 2008 (Game Convention) at Leipzig came and went, and as usual, Funcom guys didn't miss the chance to market their game. One of the most interesting news for me was the upcoming Age of Conan expansion that is slated for 2009 release.
While I think that AoC needs tweaking, balancing and polishing a lot more than an expansion, I still can't help but feel excited about it. I mean, I've already seen pretty much all the world of AoC - short of two raid dungeons - so it would be nice to explore new areas. Especially because DX10 should be fully supported by the time this comes out. Maybe.
What you see up there is concept art for the new expansion; this teaser pic is all Funcom released, but it's no wonder really - the game has only been out for a little more than 3 months, so you can't really expect them to have made a lot of progress there.
Judging from the oriental style of the buildings in the background and the ornamental armor, the expansion will likely take us to the land of Khitai, which is sort of a Hyborian version of China. Did you know that the Russian word for China is pronounced 'kitai' (something like kit-tie)? I don't know whether it's Russian or some other language that Robert E. Howard took the name from for his Khitai, but as you probably know, all Hyborian nations are based on our world. Here's where it is located in Hyboria (look to the east):
You'd think Funcom would have chosen a country closer to the areas currently in game - like Nemedia, or Shem - but there you go. At least fans of all things Asian should be happy, especially if the expansion will contain anything resembling katanas. We can probably expect a new race and a few classes to be added along with it, too. Plus, this expansion seems to be a part of Funcom's plans to enter the Asian markets with Age of Conan in the second half of 2009.