ExileCon 2023 Overview: Path of Exile 2 Just Got Better
ExileCon 2023 kicked off in the last week of July when Path of Exile fans gathered worldwide to await the news about Path of Exile 2. When Jonathan Rogers, the director at Grinding Gear Games, announced Path of Exile 2 at ExileCon 2019, they told the community that they’d be releasing it as an expansion to the original Path of Exile game. Both campaigns would initially be playable in the same game client and a shared endgame.
Path of Exile 2’s scope has continued to grow four years later. As stated by the developers during this year’s ExileCon, PoE 2 has become far more than an expansion with a new campaign. There will be new classes, monsters, mechanics, skills—-just about everything you’d expect from a next-gen ARPG. Path of Exile 2 is no longer what it was introduced as; it’s now much better.
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When Path of Exile 2 was announced four years ago in the same event, it was merely going to overtake and expand on Path of Exile 1. The original campaign would still be playable, but PoE’s transformation into Path of Exile 2 would add a new storyline and alter the endgame. It’s sort of like how Overwatch became Overwatch 2.
During this year’s ExileCon, Grinding Gear Games suddenly stated that they’ve changed their mind. Path of Exile 2 will now be a separate game and run in its own client. So far, we can expect the sequel to have the following:
- 100 bosses
- 1,500 passive skills
- 240 active skills
- 600 new monsters
- New mechanics (a dodge roll with no cooldown, etc.)
The co-founder of Grinding Gear Games said that there was a point where they realized their plan to replace Path of Exile with Path of Exile 2 would essentially be getting rid of a game for no reason. Path of Exile is an ARPG that millions of players love, hence they decided to make Path of Exile and Path of Exile 2 separate. Each with its own balance, mechanics, leagues, and endgames.
The two PoE titles won’t be isolated from one another, though. Jonathan Rogers added that in-game purchases will be available for both games. Everything you will purchase or have ever purchased in the future will be usable unless it’s hyper-specific to the content of one of them. For example, since you can’t transform into a bear in Path of Exile, the reskin of your bear form isn’t working for it. However, you can use all your stash tabs or equip other viable skins.
Rogers showed a lengthy demo set in Act 3 that revealed some things we can expect from Path of Exile 2.
For starters, there are two new classes: the Monk and the Sorceress. The Monk can use skills such as Killing Palm, which is used to give the class power charges and cull enemies. There’s also Falling Thunder, which enhances the Monk’s attack power by utilizing the power charges. Meanwhile, Wind Blast keeps enemies at bay, and Shattering Palm puts an ice bomb on a single target.
On the other hand, the Sorceress is an Intelligence-focused character themed around elemental destruction, as opposed to the Witch, which uses summoning and occult magic. Her skills include Ice Nova, which hits enemies in an AoE blast and slows them down, and Spark, an electric-based attack that bounces around tight passages.
Now that there will be two variants for one combo, it makes sense that one reward won’t work for both. Quest rewards will offer two variants in Path of Exile 2, each tailored to one of the two classes’ stat combinations. Moreover, gems dropped in the PoE sequel won’t come with predetermined skills. Instead, you’ll have to click on the uncut gem and select options that suit them best. The uncut gems are pre-leveled to match the area level it dropped, making it easier to change between skills.
Path of Exile 2 will feature Ascendary classes, with each class having three Ascendancies that let you further specialize your class of choice in a way that only that class has exclusivity to. Grinding Gear Games have not disclosed any information on what those Ascendancies are yet, but we’ll no doubt find out more once the closed beta happens.
Do you need answers or some extra help to complete a quest objective? In Path of Exile 2, you can summon or call an NPC to join you on your travels! Gone are the days when you needed to travel back to town just to get aid.
When people got to play Path of Exile 2’s demo in 2021, many praised it as a gorgeous overhaul of a classic ARPG. Grinding Gear Games isn’t quite at the finish line just yet. They announced at the end of their presentation that the Path of Exile 2 beta won’t start for another year. Players can expect more details about the Path of Exile sequel on July 7, 2024.
With the way things are now, Path of Exile 2 is shaping up to become a true sequel to Path of Exile. It’s bound to shake up the ARPG genre once it releases and give Diablo 4 a run for its money.