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I've not actually used one, so take this with a grain of salt, but to me it looks like a boat reel. Here are things I think are strikes against it:

  • The trap door is a terrible idea on the beach. It's a way for sand to get into the gearbox, and the easy access "benefit" is pretty much meaningless. What, are you going to start carrying reel lube in your pocket, so you can service the reels between casts?
  • It's got way more drag than you need in the surf: The 7000, which is the only reel with enough line capacity (325 yards of 30 lb braid) to be suitable for use in the suds, has a listed maximum drag rating of 32 pounds. Have you ever needed 30 pounds of drag in the surf? Me neither.
  • Price: $200-$220 is too expensive, in my opinion, for a reel that's made in China and is not designed specifically for beach fishing. Why shell out $220 for a reel when you can get a Slammer, which will do everything you ask it to in the surf, for $70 less?
  • Did I mention that the trap door is a terrible idea for surfcasters?
The one really good idea on the reel is the braid-ready spool. The spool has a rubber strip in the middle of it, which eliminates the need for mono backing (or electrical tape). This is a terrific idea that should be offered as an option for every saltwater spinning reel out there.

It might be a good boat reel, and I could be wrong, but to me the Conquer doesn't look like a reel that will be good for surf rats. The Torque spinner, on the other hand....
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