Free-to-play-but-not-shit action RPG Path of Exile has a new "mini-expansion" in the works, and it's coming in a tantalising four days' time. Will it involve clicking on enemies until their skin flies off and that shortsword they swallowed clatters bloodily to the ground? Well duh. Until now we didn't know much more than that, but a new trailer should help illuminate matters - literally, thanks to all the exploding spells, exploding guts and other exploding things contained therein. Gaze in wonder at the portentous, thrilling and tetratitted video after the break. [UPDATE: Vaal has been fully detailed on the Path of Exile site.]
Path of Exile
Path of Exile is a game about meeting lots of monsters and then punching out all their blood so you can steal their stuff. As action RPGs go, it's great, and I called it things like "compulsive" and "exceptionally generous" in our Path of Exile review. When people say things like "all free-to-play games are poo" I like to materialise, wave an arm in Path of Exile's direction and whisper "look! All the free blood-punching you could ever need!" and then vanish in a puff of smoke.
For those already hooked on Path of Exile, good news. There's going to be more of it according to a post on the Path of Exile site.
Compulsion is a dubious sort of pleasure, but it’s what action-RPGs excel at. With their slow levelling curves, gradually unlocking skills and swelling hordes of foes, Diablo, Titan Quest, Torchlight and now Path of Exile all aim to ensnare rather than instantly delight.
The 15-year-old formula has barely evolved, but is still effective. You must always start in rags, punching zombies with your bare fists in some gloomy town, because any grander beginning would curtail your slow ascent to godhood. A start anywhere more glamorous than a dark field or Path of Exile’s grey beach would lessen the triumphant moment 12 hours later when you annihilate a 20-strong giant spider brood and think back to those first moments. Sometimes you’ll find folk waiting beneath yellow exclamation marks to give you quests and deliver lore points in tiny boxes of text, but mostly you punch, loot, level up, equip your stolen gains, grow strong and slowly mould your bedraggled vagrant into a killing machine.
It’s a character arc of sorts, albeit one plotted to the sound of a thousand repetitive mouse-clicks, but that comes with a quiet satisfaction of its own, a feeling of incremental achievement earned over many hours. If you value that feeling, Path of Exile is the 200-hour time sink you’re looking for.
Clearly in a reflective mood, Grinding Gear Games have revealed some new statistics on the popularity of free-to-play ARPG Path of Exile. Officially released this October, after an open beta that began at the start of 2013, their numbers state that over 3.7 million have signed up to play the game. Given the click-heavy nature of the genre, it looks as if 2014 is going to be an extremely good year for the makers of heat packs.
New Zealand-based developer Grinding Gear Games has reason to celebrate. Only a month after launch, its free-to-play, clicky-click action RPG Path of Exile enjoys more than 250,000 daily users, and over 4 million registered users. 1.5 million unique players logged in following the end of its open beta.
Action RPG Path of Exile sees its first post-launch patch go live this Wednesday, the first update of seven planned before Grinding Gears releases an expansion in March 2014. While the 1.0.1 update includes its share of mysterious new items to try out, it's also set to kick off the free-to-play game's fifth season of competitive events, according to lead designer Chris Wilson.
"Free-to-play" and "microtransactions" are dirty terms to some. That's understandable. Famous Facebook Skinner boxes like Farmville have clouded attitudes toward today's free-to-play games, and there's an assumption all microtransaction-driven game design is handicapped by the need to create ways to charge players. For some games, this is certainly true, but there are excellent free-to-play games out there that represent good value for money. Below we've assessed some of the most common methods used by free-to-play games to make money from players, and highlighted some of the fairest examples of free-to-play that are worth your time.
Free-to-play action RPG Path of Exile will emerge blinking from the beta dungeon later today, its bugs slain and features looted. With the game levelling up to v1.0, developers Grinding Gear will be dramatically expanding the game, adding a new class, areas and enemies, and new challenge leagues for those players looking for some advanced mouse-driven biffing.
Path of Exile has been in beta for roughly 8,000 years, but its journey is finally about to come to an end. As revealed to Shacknews, the free-to-play action RPG will escape open beta and emerge blinking into the real world on October 23rd, accompanied by a new prestige class.
The next game to haul itself onboard the Twitch livestream bandwagon is Path of Exile. The ARPG will allow streaming from within the client, Twitch chat—the whole shebang.
Still-in-development action RPGPath of Exile is known for its race leagues and signature events, special tournament versions of the game where players build new characters and race through the game as quickly as they can to level up and earn community prizes. These events have become wildly popular, helping the player base grow to over two million registered accounts—and the game is still a few months from release. Next week, Path of Exile will announce a new third season of race events, including a brand new mode called Descent Events.
One day, a more interesting patch naming format will be agreed upon. Until then, we'll have to make do with the current numerical Wild West of marking important development milestones with arbitrary numbers. Path of Exile is about to begin the second phase of its open beta, so naturally the free-to-play MMO ARPG is calling this major revision 0.11.0. Just rolls off the tongue.
Whatever the patch is called, it will release this week, on June 5th, and introduce two new experimental leagues: Anarchy and Onslaught. They're due to run alongside the previous Standard and Hardcore leagues over the next four months.
Path of Exile's Race events are an interesting idea for the free-to-play ARPG. They're short-form transitory leagues - anything from a few minutes to a month, depending on the event - that require a fresh character and prioritise quick-fire levelling and high-placed class rankings. So either a fun bit of competitive monster mauling or a weaponised carpal tunnel generator, depending on your perspective. Either way, devs Grinding Gear have announced the second season of click-crazed races.
Path of Exile. It's dark and moody. It's free to download and play. Its web of skill trees is scarier than any towering boss demon. Most importantly, it seeks to be the spiritual Diablo 2 followup purists want. Open beta commenced back in January, and the game's community has swelled immensely since then. Developer Grinding Gear is now looking at launch plans and beyond, and speaking to Joystiq, co-founder Chris Wilson says it will release in six months and get yearly expansions.
Path of Exile's community looks to be quite formidable even before the free-to-play ARPG's full release. It's been in open beta since January, pulling in some impressive numbers from players seeking a return to Diablo 2-like loot and XP mechanics. Topping that is Grinding Gear's announcement today that it's amassed 2 million registered accounts since the open beta began in January.
Grinding Gear's free-to-play ARPG Path of Exile entered open beta last week, and gamers eager for a top-down dungeon-crawling experience akin to Diablo II flooded the servers. 69,850 players, to be precise. In a forum post yesterday (via PCGamesN), Grinding Gear Lead Designer Chris Wilson stated the deluge crashed Exile's account system and servers over the weekend, but the team quickly brought everything back online today with stability and bug fixes.
If you haven't been keeping track of it, Path of Exile is an indie, top-down, loot-based RPG looking to fill the niche a vocal portion of the community feels is unserved by the cartoonishness of Torchlight and the host of oft-maligned changes to the Diablo franchise between its second and third installments. Developer Grinding Gear Games announced on its forums that the open beta should be going live right around the time this article is posted. Check out the trailer above to get a sense of the brooding moodiness.
Grinding Gear have announced the date for the open beta of their free-to-play Diablo-ish ARPG-cum-MMO, Path of Exile. While the developers had originally targeted a December 2012 date - and actually believe they can have the game ready this month - they've decided to delay until after the new year, when staff will be back from their Christmas break.
Weekends were designed for relaxation, catching up on chores, and dicing up the various spawn creeping out of the underworld. Path of Exile can help with two of these. The dark-and-bloody action RPG is throwing its first public event and that means you're just a click away from hours of demon-slaying entertainment at the beautiful price of free.
Hail, traveler! You seem the adventuring sort. Pause your passage through our website village, and look: a dungeon lies before you. You're not just going to sit there and let it lie uncrawled, hmm? Not when we have a new, magic-throwing girl for you to use to purge its dark citizens, surely.
We've already had hands-on with Path of Exile. It's dark. It's good. And it'll be free. Today, we reveal a new class: the Witch. Sorcery-filled interview and video within.