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Age of Conan Week on EG MMO

It's almost here. We are so there.

After five years in development and nearly as much time spent talking about it, hotly-anticipated fantasy MMO Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures is released this week. The US gets it on Tuesday, Europe gets it on Friday, and servers went live to players with "early access" codes at the weekend.

We're marking the first major MMO launch of 2008 with a whole week of dedicated features on Eurogamer MMO.

Today, we report from last week's launch event in Oslo - hometown of Age of Conan's developers, Funcom. When nipples are the hot topic in interviews, roast boar is on the menu and the entertainment is provided by a Norwegian metal band in sailor hats, you know you're at a game preview like no other. We have fresh detail on the game itself, too.

On Wednesday, we'll have a guide to all 12 of Age of Conan's character classes. Choosing your starting class in an MMORPG is a critical moment, and we're here to help you decide which is right for you with a guide to their respective roles, abilities and play style.

On Friday, we'll provide authoritative hands-on impressions of the game, based on both the beta test and the final, release version of the game. The full review will appear in the following weeks, once teething troubles have abated and we've had a chance to get to grips with all aspects of Age of Conan.

Watch out for news updates and fresh screens and videos this week, too.

Age of Conan is the biggest MMO launch since last year's Lord of the Rings Online - arguably, since World of Warcraft, three and a half years ago - and anticipation is very high. Funcom reckons it already has the record for pre-order sales for a PC game. Will WOW be taken down a peg or two? Will Funcom's servers cope with demand? Stick with Eurogamer MMO to find out.