Path of Exile’s Fall of Oriath expansion hits August 4th

Fine free-to-play action-RPG Path of Exile will launch its next expansion on August 4th, developers Grinding Gear Games announced last night. The expansion, named The Fall of Oriath [official site], will introduce a new act sending players back to the land they were exiled from. Time for some frank conversations with the ruling powers, I’m sure. On top of that, the expansion boshes in remixes of all five acts, revisiting them to see how they’ve changed since you murderously swept through and whacked everyone until they burst into showers of coins and swords.

Oh, and there are godlike powers you’ll gain too. The new ‘Pantheon’ system lets players beat up gods to steal their mighty defensive powers. Here’s an idea, Grinding Gear: every time an object strikes you, it transmorphs into delicious fresh crusty baguette. From axes to fists, all becomes bread. You’re welcome to use that idea.

Here, this moody new trailer shows off some of the expansion’s sights and fights:

Fall of Oriath is due to launch at 9pm (1pm Pacific) on Friday, August 4th.

If you’ve not played Path of Exile yet, hey, it is free-to-play (on Steam and direct through Grinding Gear) and Adam recently declared it his favourite action-RPG. He said:

“The perfect ARPG is one that occupies me without demanding all of my attention. They’re the games I like to play when I’m listening to a podcast or audiobook, so I’m not against some of that idle clicker mentality. Path of Exile supplies that, happily providing cerebral background noise, but if I want to, I can start digging around under the bonnet and fiddling with its inner workings. It’s a game that lets me play at my own pace, and that lets me dive deep when I choose to but never forces me to engage with its more difficult challenges or most intricate systems.”

And he’s never spent a penny on free-to-play microtransaction bits.

11 Comments

  1. The Great Wayne says:

    And he’s never spent a penny on free-to-play microtransaction bits.

    Which is a damn shame ! They need far more funding for the excellent work they’ve been doing over the years.

    With this expansion they’re finally over with the “play three time the same content over 3 difficulties to reach endgame” which is a legacy arpgs have carried over for far too long.

    Depending on the quality of the storytelling for the new “story’ content I’ll go as far as to say that it’ll blow diablo 2 away by a large margin.

    PoE is still far from perfect, but that’s hands down the best modern arpg, it’s free, and the fact that it still has obvious space to grow into only makes it more impressive.

  2. zind says:

    As someone who has repeatedly bounced off of this game I’m pretty excited for this expansion in particular. Some of the leagues have been pretty fun, but ultimately couldn’t keep my interest beyond first character death. The single storyline playthrough (as opposed to the ‘do it again but harder’ scheme) might just be what I need to get me past the slow and clunky stages of the game.

  3. Minsc_N_Boo says:

    It always makes me happy to see PoE featured on RPS. This was the first place I read about the game, and its still my favourite ARPG!

    (link to rockpapershotgun.com)

  4. Faldrath says:

    Very excited about this. Watching the trailer (I haven’t played the beta and I’ve been avoiding spoilers), it does seem clear that they’re making their Dark Souls influences a bit more explicit on monster design.

    PoE always had a bit of the Souls spirit in its storytelling (which, although not as oblique as Souls’, needs to be pieced together from the NPCs, lore objects in the world and unique item descriptions) and the way that you need to engage with the community if you want to be effective in the endgame (indirectly by visiting wikis/forums, or directly by guilds and trading), but now that they have better resources for graphics, it’s getting quite clear in the general design too :)

    • The Great Wayne says:

      Well, to be fair the metagame has always been a strong aspect of arpgs. It was already there with diablo 1, and became very prevalent in D2. PoE is a straight heir of diablo 2, so the diablo franchise got the anteriority on that point I guess.

      As for the creative inspiration, PoE has always gravitated in the graphical universe of berzerk, frazetta work, Conan, souls series, etc. with a unique twist toward polynesia thanks to new zealand culture.

      Because of that, I don’t think there’s a very clear line to draw between PoE and the souls franchise. The ancient rome references have always made me think more of Robert E. Howard Conan setting than anything, for PoE storyline is mostly about decadence, hubris and corruption (from sheer political power or otherwise…), and the rise to power of the slaves/outcasts against an inbred elite of “civilized” citizens – which was also a good portion of the Conan background setting.

      • Daymare says:

        I mean, I agree with most everything you say, especially the mix of Roman/Polynesian influence (which makes it that much more unique and exotic).

        But those Wheel Skeletons in the trailer are straight outta Dark Souls 3, and the armor set the character wears is very Bloodborne-y (I know, could be from anywhere else, too). There’s something to be said about how bosses have become weirder, and creepier, and all things considered more Soulsborne-like, to me at least.

        • Alevice says:

          The wheel skeletons are also likely a reference to Berserk. There are quite a few monsters in that trailer that do scream berserk at moments. The winged penitent/executioner reminded me of apostle spawn

          link to img.bato.to
          link to vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net

        • The Great Wayne says:

          The wheel skeletons are indeed memorable monsters (weren’t they in DS 1 too ? I think so, in the catacombs), as do a lot of other members of the DS bestiary. Every time you got such monsters popping in a game, a lot of people think dark souls, whereas as Alevice said berzerk has explored a lot of similar figures, and predates DS (Berzerk is also a known influence on dark souls, so it might even be more than just creative coincidence), often picking its inspiration in medieval history and imagery.

          With that said, it could very well be a reference to souls – there’s no problem with that and that’s the kind of little winks at the fans we all enjoy after all.

          I just wanted to point out that PoE definitely have a universe of its own (and an original one at that) with which they’ve been sticking since the start, and that should be applauded, especially in a modern videogame era where it’s often too easy to just go for an ersatz of another trending franchise/universe.

          • Daymare says:

            Confession, I’m slowly working my way backwards through the Souls series. I didn’t get far in each when they were released, but have since gotten the hang of them. So I’m at the end of DS3 and will at some point start over in DS2 again; thus had no idea if there are Wheel Skeletons in the other Souls as well. Probably.

            I’ve also never read Berserk, but from all I’ve seen and heard sounds like a great recommendation for a new manga series after years and years of nothing (except for the occasional Junji Ito short).

  5. BaronKreight says:

    When you see the amount of content this expansion is going to add for free and compare it to that necromancer pack released by Diablo developers and sold for a price you start to wonder what is good and what is evil.

    • Daymare says:

      I love PoE way more than D3, but the Necro in D3 is not that terribly priced. It could be cheaper if you compare it to the price of RoS (or a full AAA game), yes, but considering all the work that went into unique minions, sets, animations, new voice acting (plus all the bonus bells and whistles I don’t care about) … and the fact that it’s actually real new content — that’s certainly not EVIL, and especially not if compared to
      link to rockpapershotgun.com

      It also compares nicely in a different way: If you enjoy and support PoE, the Necro is on par with one random middle-priced MTX in PoE, like a skill or character effect. Not that bad, that way.