Discover the Unique World of Aion
Soar in the skies of Atreia as a winged hero in the completely free MMORPG Aion: Ascension. Produced by NCsoft, Aion lets you to join up with comrades to destroy the evil dragons and take on your enemy player faction head-to-head in a brutal fight to the death inside the Abyss. Atreia is a world ripe with dangers and ready to explore. Dive deep into perilous dungeons, and make new friends while experiencing all that Aion has to offer.
Official video that gives you a look at the game
Aion consists of 60 levels of multiplayer role-playing action with combat that's fun and fast-paced, an active defending system, ability chains, aerial combat, a vast fantasy world, plenty of group dungeons for intrepid teams of adventurers and a player vs. player system that allows large groups of players to face off against each other for control of key areas and fortresses. The game also features quests and campaigns, two character factions, eight unique classes with more on the way, a pet battle system, a crafting system and a new housing system.
The Story of Atreia
Aion, god of Atreia, created two races of winged heroes to protect the realm and perform the bidding of Aion. When war broke out between the races, factions were born. Both the Elyos and Asmodians, dramatically different in looks, became mortal enemies and settled in different areas of the world. Now, centuries later, war rages on, ancient dragons threaten to overrun the world and it's in your hands to take flight and obtain victory in battle.
Upon creating a character, you're able to choose a faction, and from that point on, you fight for your faction's cause and fight for your life.
Aion's Class System
There are four base classes in Aion that have completely different playstyles. All classes are open to both factions. Upon reaching level 10, you can choose to specialize into one of two different advanced classes for each base class:
Warrior - Plate-armored fighter who leads the way into battle and never falters before a fight.
- Gladiator - Melee damage dealer who excels at all types of weaponry and area-of-effect attacks.
- Templar - Melee tank class who bears a shield and protects their group with a myriad of defensive abilities.
Scout - Wearing leather armor, Scouts are quick, deadly and have plenty of tricks up their sleeves.
- Ranger - Ranged damage dealer who specializes in archery, but can also lay down traps and attack in melee range.
- Assassin - Melee damage dealer who can sneak around in stealth and strike enemies when they least expect it.
Mage - Cloth-wearing masters of magic who wield the power behind the elements and use them with deadly destruction.
- Spiritmaster - Ranged magical damage dealer who controls the elements of Earth, Wind, Water and Fire and uses them to summon powerful spirits that can turn the tide of battle and weaken opponents.
- Sorcerer - Ranged magical damage dealer who controls the elements of Earth, Wind, Water and Fire and uses them to make quick work of enemy mobs.
Priest - Protectors of the weak and battle healers who can turn a lost fight into a victory.
- Cleric - Ranged magical healer who focuses on keeping themselves and their party members alive and well.
- Chanter - Hybrid class who can provide a bit of healing when necessary, deal decent damage, or equip a shield and temporarily protect their group.
There are also some new classes coming in update 4.0 that include the Bard and Gunner.
Gunner class preview video
Bard class preview video
When grouping up with other players in Aion, what class you have chosen will likely dictate what role you'll be performing. Warrior classes generally have to take the brunt of most attacks, and Priests may find themselves generally helping others stay alive. All classes, however, are still capable of soloing.
Group Play in Aion
Parties and instances are a large part of Aion, and half the fun of the game is grouping up to take on challenging encounters. Instances, often known as dungeons, will be where a large part of the most difficult group content takes place. At the level cap, players can also take on the most challenging content in the game-- 6-man group fights. These fights often take coordination and practice, but can be extremely fun with the right group of friends.
There are also quite a few group quests and campaigns in the game which are strewn throughout the leveling process. Don't be afraid to ask for help while leveling if you come across a difficult enemy!
Joining a Legion, Aion's version of guilds, is the best way to meet other players for taking on these challenges. Legions are organized, player-ran groups where players can talk, socialize and just have fun together. They're a great way to make new friends.
For solo players, there is still plenty to do in Aion. Most quests and campaigns can be soloed, although some can be quite the challenge! Crafting, housing, exploring and discovering Aion's pet system are also activities perfect for solo players.
Taking On the Leveling Grind
Aion has seen extensive changes since its North American launch in 2009, and while it remains true in its deep fantasy and magical roots, the leveling experience has been smoothed out dramatically, which makes it easier for new players to hop in and get a taste of what's it store for them.
The game has some new features to help players level quickly, including a special server with 100% boosted leveling rates called the Fast-Track server. Using Fast-Track, you're able to group up with players across multiple servers and reap the rewards of a quick leveling spree.
Aion also has a mentoring feature, which players can use to help each other out when leveling, and there are items that can be purchased to speed the process along even further. Combining all this, it's possible for a new player to reach the level cap in a couple weeks of casual play.
Once hitting level 60, the gearing process begins, which can take a little time, but having friends and Legion-mates help you along the journey is always recommended.
Flying Across Atreia
Aion's flight system is one of the most unique systems in the game. Starting at level 10, you're able to equip a pair of wings and use them to fly in certain areas of the world, take part in special aerial combat, and even use them for crafting, quests, campaigns and PvP (player vs. player). The Abyss, which is one of the game's endgame PvP maps, is entirely focused on flight.
While flying, you will gain access to new user interface options and the game's keyboard controls will change slightly. It's possible to glide while airborne, although landing might take a bit of practice! As your character gains more levels, it will also become possible to obtain different wing styles.
Character customization is a large part of MMORPGs these days, and Aion definitely meets the bar as far as customization is concerned. In fact, Aion's character creation options raise that bar in many ways. The character creation tutorial boasts a huge amount of different types of custom sliders, which allow you to change everything from hair color and style to facial shape, lip color, tattoos, nose width, neck length, chest width, leg thickness, overall height and shoulder size. You're able to create extremely unique characters in Aion.
Video shows the numerous character creation possibilities in Aion
After the initial character creation process, it's also possible to change your appearance anytime in-game at special Plastic Surgeon vendors. Paid gender changes, name changes and server changes are also options available on NCsoft's website.
Crafting and Housing
There are six crafting professions in Aion: Weaponsmithing, Armorsmithing, Handicrafting, Tailoring, Alchemy and Cooking. Professions allow you to make useful items or pieces of armor and weapons using items gathered in the world. It's also possible to create new items or materials from other objects through a process called Morphing. Morphing allows you to essentially convert one item to another, which makes crafting much easier.
Player created video giving you a look at Weaponsmithing
Found out in the world, there are also rare items called Weathered Objects, which can be discovered and extracted via Essencetapping. This allows you to harvest unique items and gathering materials. Aion's crafting system, overall, has many layers, but is easy enough for anyone to pick up.
Aion's housing system is similar in style to Lord of the Rings Online's system, and features five different styles of houses that players can bid on and if won, can redesign and furnish using goodies obtainable around the world of Atreia. It's also possible to set up custom music scripts within your house. Housing is a great way to build yourself a home away from home in Aion, and thanks to the perks the housing system gives, that home can serve multiple purposes.
Graphics, Controls and User Interface
Aion's a bit of a dated PC MMORPG by now, but given how gorgeous the game's graphics were three years ago, they still present extremely solid to this day. The in-game world is vast and offers plenty of opportunities to explore and take in that beauty.
The controls in Aion are easy to figure out, and utilize the "WASD" keyboard controls and numbered ability hotbar combination that most MMORPG gamers are familiar with. The user interface is clean and simple with room for customization. The game's chat options are solid, and there are extra user interface options for configuring dungeon groups.
Is Free Really Free?
Here's the ultimate question! Most F2P MMOs have several restrictions, but this is not the case with North America's version of Aion. There are no tiers of subscriptions, nor content restrictions of any kind. The cash shop, known as the Aion Shop, offers plenty of cosmetic goodies such as pets and mounts, items that grant boosts, socketing materials and a system called C.U.B.E. that allows you to place objects together and transmute them into new items.
Nice overview of Aion's free to play features
The European version of Aion, however, maintains a different F2P model entirely, and has various tiers of subscriptions. The Korean version of Aion allows players to level up to a certain level for free.
The Current State of Aion - What Players Are Saying
Aion had a rough launch when it first debuted in North America. Bugs were pronounced and players left in large groups as the game slowly stabilized internally. Aion has maintained that stability since that point, however, and has been updated very frequently with new content updates that keep the current playerbase excited for what comes next around the bend.
The game is more accessible now than ever, and new players should find the servers to be bustling. The new features being added are innovative, yet keep the game's group content-driven mantra strong. The game world itself has magnified significantly, giving explorers plenty of content to discover.
Aion - Your Future
For players looking for a stable F2P fantasy MMORPG with updates that come quick and constant-- without all the restriction gimmicks-- look no further, Aion: Ascended may just be your answer!
- Official Game Guides - everything you need to know about getting started in Aion