Aion has been in design since 2006. Now that its been released what is it really like?

aion logo

Aion is a MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Roll-Playing Game) released by the game creators NCSoft.  The game combines PvE & PvP (Player vs Environment and Player vs Player).

Plot:

(Taken from the offical website)

In the beginning, Aion benevolently watched over his world Atreia. He created the humans, and the Balaur to safeguard and watch over them. Eventually, the Balaur became obsessed with power and subjugation. They attacked and destroyed anything that would not yield to them, and they began to set their sights on humans. Five of the Balaur rose to a height of strength above the rest, and became known as the five Dragon Lords. When Aion refused to grant them the power they desired, the power to rival his own, they revolted and declared war on the god that created them. Aion’s hand was forced, and he created the twelve Empyrean Lords, beings of divinity and power to protect the Tower of Eternity, the center of the world and the source of Aion’s power and all Aether in the world. The Empyrean lords formed a barrier that made the land around the tower a safe haven, and people began to populate it and recreate their civilization.

Some humans ‘ascended’ to become Daeva and, like the Empyrean Lords, had wings and the ability to fight the Balaur. With time, enough Daevas rose to form an army. The Empyrean Lords would lead the Daeva into battle and fight ceaselessly. Eventually Israphel, one of the Empyrean Lords and also one of the two designated Tower Guardians, suggested peace. Ariel agreed, suggesting that if Israphel could overcome his hatred for the Balaur, they all could. Five of the Empyrean Lords, led by Azphel, vehemently disagreed. They considered peace foolish and a sacrilege to the honored dead. However, the second guardian of the tower, Siel, was swayed to peace and her decision sealed the argument. The five Dragon Lords were invited inside the barrier for peace talks. Before the peace-talks could begin, someone attacked and slew one of the Dragon Lords. This was when the Balaur charged the tower and destroyed it; the resulting cataclysm broke Atreia in half. The two Guardians of the Tower, Israphel and Siel, frantically moved to opposite ends of the tower, alongside the other Empyrean Lords and Daevas. They sacrificed their life energy to ensure the ends of the world would not separate into space. Of the original twelve, ten Empyrean Lords survived. Five who had opposed peace and claimed that the weakness of the rest of the lords had allowed the Balaur to attack them reigned over the dark part of the world, becoming known as the Shedim Lords. The other five reigned over the light-covered bottom part of Atreia and claim that it was the Shedim Lords’ actions that caused the breaking of the tower. They are known as the Seraphim Lords.

Those that lived in the light part of the world, the Elyos, saw little change. These followers of the Seraphim Lords created the city of Sanctum. The inhabitants of the upper part, the Asmodians, saw many changes. Having to fight against beasts, their hands became claw-like, their feet became talons. The darkness made their complexion deepen, and their eyes grew red adapting to the absence of light. They live in the city of Pandaemonium under the rule of the Shedim Lords.

Players begin the game as human inhabitants of their chosen world (Elysea or Asmodae) who have suffered significant memory loss. Through attempting to retrieve their lost past and completing other tasks along the way, they ‘ascend’ as winged, immortal Daevas. After this has happened, the characters travel their respective capital cities to begin their lives as holy servants of their respective people. The worlds are almost completely separate until a player enters the abyss. The story and tone of the game differ greatly between the worlds, as do the landscapes and characters one encounters; however the basic linear progression is the same.

Gameplay:

assassinLike with all MMORPG’s you get a lot of character customisation. Once logged into Aion you can customise your entire character such as height, weight, body parts etc. Different skin colours, facial looks, hair colours and styles, nose, ears, eyes the list just goes on.

Once ingame you are able to take up various professions so that you can create equipment. There are 6 crafting professions, Alchemy, Cooking, Tailoring, Handicrafting, Weaponsmithing and Armoursmithing) and 2 extracting professions (which you automatically learn).

Many of the skills acquired as characters progress may only be performed in a certain order, or chain. Generally the skills located farther along in the chain are more powerful then those at the beginning, or those that have no prerequisite.

The PVP system is a very big part in Aion, competeing in the Abyss area will give you Abyss points. This lets the game rank players as battles are won against other players. The higher the rank of the player the different the characters wings will look (and get various name titles). After a certain amount of points you can also get purchased items such as armours and weapons.

Classes:

There are 4 main classes and within that 8 sub classes. Players start off picking one of the main classes (Warrior, Mage, Scout, Priest) and after hitting level 9 you must pick from 2 sub classes. Here is a list of the classes/subclasses.

Warrior – Templar or Gladiator

Mages – Sorcerer or Spirit Master

Scouts – Assassin or Ranger

Priests – Cleric or Chanter

assassin fighting mobs

Quests:

There are three main types of quests, going in the most boring order first here they are: Work orders, Ordinary quests and Campaign quests.

Work orders are used to increase a skill in a profession

Ordinary quests require the player to complete some form of task to receive a reward

Campaign quests (my favourite) are focused on Aion’s story and are crucial for the player to progress through the game you will find that some of the quests are repeatable but not abandable.

Leveling:

Personally I’m a complete grind whore, I love to spend the time and level up the character through hours of hard leveling. Aion does have that feeling sometimes but there are so many quests, you will find it is much easier to level up that way. (tip: Get as many quests as you can, complete them and then sign them off, don’t get a quest, complete, sign off, get, complete, sign off etc. This will take forever to level!)

Conclusion:

This is a well balanced game with many many features and cool things to do. If it wasn’t £8.99 to play per month, I would be more likely to carry on playing it.

Game play: 8/10

Funness: 7/10

Graphics 9.5/10

Storyline: 8/10

Price: 3/10

Overall Rating: 7/10.