S&S, Conan in particular, was part of my mindset when Loz and I worked on MRQ2. I had hoped that Mongoose would relaunch their Conan license using the new rules, and save for Paradox it would have happened. In RQ6 the trend will continue and in fact will more strongly support the S&S genre.
Why do some people think that d100 systems are too deadly for the genre? Well, there's a number of reasons, but the following are what spring to mind:
1) They come from a history of playing combat heavy games, where scenarios are based around sequential conflicts, each of which unerringly ends with death.
2) They are used to surviving combat by the aid of potent and easily garnered magic.
3) They haven't read the original R.E.Howard stories, or their memories of them have been submerged by pastiches and poor movies.
4) They forget that Conan is a literary character and is fated to survive the slings and arrows of all the dangers he faces.
d100 games are perfect for the genre because:
1) You can actually parry attacks.
2) You can swiftly defeat foes with one or two blows, without needing to use specifically designed mooks.
3) You can be a combat god by simply having a far higher skill than opponents.
4) Yet you can be defeated by superior numbers of very inferior foes.
5) You can replicate the fact that combat is scary and few of the book's protagonists ever use it as the first option to resolve conflict.
6) You are encouraged (and have skills available) to talk or trick your way out of conflict.
7) You can be a athletic, stealthy, educated warrior without breaking the limits of a character class or castrating a 'build'.
8) You can wear armour and have it work in the way it works in the stories (Conan loves his mail and plate)
9) With MRQ2/RQ6 at least, you can easily replicate all the shield bashing, disarming, leaping and so on which happen in the dynamic prose without penalising you own chance to hit.
10) Also with MRQ2/RQ6 you can defeat an opponent easily without needing to injure them, such as the innumerable times Conan is bashed over the head and rendered unconscious.
11) Hero Points, DI or its equivalent can help character survival.
Now most problems GMs have when replicating Conanesque games using d100 games comes down to scaling of enemies, arenas of conflict and pacing. Read through most of the tales and you'll see several trends:
1) Most foes are far inferior to the main characters in terms of skill. The core protagonists have a reputation for deadliness which Conan himself often uses to intimidate his foes, preventing a fight from even starting, or quickly breaking the morale of enemies once combat is joined. Such matters are up to the GM to impose and (save for being outclassed) are system agnostic.
2) Not all the conflict, challenge or drama hinges on swinging a sword. Conan often uses his charm to turn potential foes over to his side. He uses diplomacy to finagle himself into positions of rank. He uses seduction to ensure promotion or survival. And those aspects proliferate the stories. He also uses his intellect to think his way around problems such as using tricks to fool priests, stealth to bypass unnecessary combat, knowledge of languages to seek out treasures, his athletic skills to flee from opponents - and lets face it, he runs an awful lot.
3) Pacing is perhaps the most important aspect. Conan stories hardly ever revolve about a sequence of fights every half hour. He's not cleaning out dungeons or committing total genocide (well, save for unwittingly killing the odd unique monster). Days can pass between combats, there is lots of travel, carousing, flight, rabble rousing and so on between each conflict. So GMs shouldn't need to rely on healing magic to keep on propping up the PCs between encounters. If he finds the party getting too injured he should cut back on the number of fights, reduce the threat of the opponents and make sure the majority of combats (save perhaps for the climax of the scenario) are fought with the intent of capturing rather than killing the characters. After all, most of Conan's foes want to interrogate, torture or sacrifice him later on.
For me d100 systems are the perfect and logical fit for the gritty, dangerous Hyborian world. I don't want to play superhuman or uber heroic Conanesque games. I want one where I don't care if my barbarian dies, provided he dies well...