Path of Exile is a recently released free to play game, an action RPG. Similar to the Diablo franchise of games. Whilst path of exile might seem like a fairly simple concept, a hack and slash game, it actually has a very indepth skill tree which creates a lot of variety for players.
You pick a starting class and follow the same Act like structure in most action rpgs. Going from zone to zone, completing a quest, taking your through 3 acts. There are also some different ladders, such as hardcore, where you if you die, that character gets removed from the hardcore ladder to the standard one. In this respect there’s a lot of competition for leveling up and competing in the harder ladders, which is rewarded at certain periods in the year.
Starting out on Path of Exile, you might feel like it’s quite a basic game, but as soon as you start delving into the skill tree, and the different bonuses you can get from unlocking a new point on the skill tree, you’ll realise how in-depth the game is. In a way it’s quite an unfriendly game to new players, because it’s confusing what the best path to take your character down in terms of the skill tree is. But the game’s actual difficulty in killing monsters and continuing through the acts is rather easy, so it offsets the complexity of the skill tree a bit.
One unique feature of the game is that health/mana potions, are vials that stay in your health potion slot, and refill based on monster kills, their max dosage is set by the quality of potion. So you have this pool of health available to you, but it’s limited by how many enemies you are slashing your way through. The potions also act over time, rather than instantaneously.
Another feature is the use of skills, skills can be used by any class, but have requirements. You also socket skills into equipment slots, as a sort of gem. This skill gem is then levelled up through repeated use and improves. You can also link together the slots to make the skills affect each other, so lifesteal linked with cleave, would give you a cleave that provides lifesteal.
For currency, there is no gold standard in Poe, which seems strange at first, instead you pay for items with currency items. These currency items also act as actual use items, such as the scroll of wisdom for identifying items or the orb of trasmutation which makes a white item a blue special item. You gain these currency items through finding them in the world, or selling the items you pick up to the npcs.
As a basic beginner, deciding on a class is the same as most games. Marauders are your classic large weapon wielding madmen barbarians that slam things in the face, Templars are your tanks, Rangers/Witches are your ranged dps, killing things safely from afar, Shadow is a sort of rogue like character that is fairly straightforward, Duelists and Scions are more hybrid classes where you can have some choice/variety in your playstyle.
Personally I find ranged characters the easiest to play as a beginner. Even though you are physically weak when caught, it’s fairly easy to run around and spam abilities from afar safely, and again personally I find the kiting playstyle more fun than the upfront wreck your face playstyle.
Path of Exile is probably the best action rpg on the market right now, especially considering its free to play, of course if you want some special items and rewards, you can pay real money for these, but it’s not so bad that it’s pay to win. Once you get into playing the game for a couple of hours, you’ll easily grasp the way to play the game and be on your happy way to killing hoards of enemies and exploring the world. Best of luck! Thanks for reading.