Refined Classic Action RPG: Path of Exile

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Path of Exile is a free-to-play action online RPG for PC developed by New Zealand based video game development studio: Grinding Gear Games. The game is set in a dark fantasy world and you play as an exile who is banished to the dark continent of Wraeclast.

The player must face the cruel and unforgiving remote continent populated by dangerous inhabitants and supernatural creatures.

You can pick from 6 character classes which each represent either one or two core attributes. Marauder, Witch, and Hunter represent one primary attributes: Strength, Intelligence and Dexterity respectively. Duelist, Templar, and Shadow represent a hybrid of two attributes: Strength/Dexterity, Strength/Intelligence, Intelligence/Dexterity.

All classes have its own strengths and weaknesses and let me tell you why the game is worth to play.

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I tried this game after Michael suggested me to play this in multiplayer mode. The registration is straightforward and it took me just couple of hour to download Path of Exile game client (approx. 5 GB). Character creation screen is also really deep of dark fantasy feel and like I said you have a choice of 6 classes. You are not given an option to customize your player appearance.

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First 2 hours worth of gameplay, I really feel this game combines good bits and pieces from well known games. The strong influence comes from the famous Diablo series developed by Blizzard, especially the game interface and mechanic. Health bar, Mana bar, potion/flask bar, skill bar, and inventory window have Diablo’s look and feel interface. If you have played this kind of hack and slay gameplay before, you can master the control really quick which is really a good thing.

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Path of Exile also took the good bit from Final Fantasy VII’s “materia” skill system. Materia in Final Fantasy VII is basically a gem that can be put into a weapon to add a new skill or improve existing skill. Think that same basic definition in Path of Exile except skills in Path of Exile are gems. Gems grant abilities when socketed into armors and weapons. A type of support gems allows you to modify the behavior of skill gems. For example, ‘Ice Spear’ allows your player to launch a shard of ice that pierces enemies and given a support gem links to your Ice Spear in the same armor/weapon bring the skill to another level. Your player can now launch three Ice Spears at the same time, or launch Ice Spear that steals enemies health transferred to your character, or launch ‘Ice Spear’ that has both modification exists in one single shot.

To make this skill system interesting, gems level up independently. Gems also follow three basic core attributes and you can improve a gem quality to unlock extra bonuses.

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All of Path of Exile’s character classes shares its huge talent tree (they refer it as the passive skill tree). At a brief, this passive skill tree looks similar to Final Fantasy X’s talent tree. The idea is that no matter what class you pick, you get the same passive skill tree except that you start on different spots in the skill tree.

I’m playing as a marauder and all of my talents start from strength passive skill tree on the left side of the tree. Michael plays as a hunter and his talent starts from dexterity passive skill tree on the right side of the tree. I can plan my marauder passive skills going to his tree if I want to.

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Another plus and unique point in Path of Exile is their crafting system. All mods in Path of Exile is completely designed around item drops from enemies directly or indirectly by collecting some amount of specific items and exchange them to a vendor for consumable items. These items can be used to upgrade your gear quality, add new socket to your gear, customize your socket link, and modify your gears’ attribute.

There is no such thing like money or gold. Item is your currency and Path of Exile is designed around a strong barter-based online item economy. You can barter your gears or items for a gear or consumable items from other player.

Path of Exile is free-to-Play online multiplayer and I truly spend wonderful time with friends playing multiplayer. Not only you get greater chance to get rare items, it’s also challenging and fun to play. Path of Exile also offers no locks on gears and items when they are used by your character. That means you can give unwanted gears or extra item to your friends in need. Sharing is caring.

Overall I’m really impressed with Path of Exile. The game is still beta but its developers deliver constant update and quick fix. Path of Exile grows with community and has a dynamic event that give the contributors reward points, unique gears and challenge.

Make sure you sign up and download the game client from http://www.pathofexile.com/. Cheers.

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Dion Siswadi

Dion Siswadi is a writer at Craving Tech, with a passion and focus on software development, computer hardware, tech gadgets and games. Dion received his bachelor and master degrees in computer science from RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, and is an Agile .NET/cross platform software developer with over 8 years of experience in the field. He is also a Microsoft certified professional in software development.

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