After many moons spent slowly but surely grinding in the dank dungeons of development, Path of Exile is finally just about to launch. No more alphas, no more betas, no more gnawing uncertainty. You can just hack and slash 'til your hearts content and monsters' hearts are strewn across the floor. Everybody wins mostly! Better still, developer Grinding Gear has released a teetering demon beast of a patch, which includes - among many, many other things - an entire guild system, a new character class, new end game areas, a new grand finale boss fight, new skills, achievements, more challenge leagues, and-- *drops dead of old age from listing things for too long*
That, believe it or not, is only just the very, very, very beginning. The full list is astoundingly massive, essentially grafting on the game's final feature set where once there was only emptiness and longing. This, for instance, is just a tiny snippet on the content side of things - which is to say it doesn't even begin to include new systems or features.
- Added the Scion, Path of Exile's prestige character class. She is aligned with all three core attributes (Strength, Dexterity and Intelligence) and starts in the center of the passive tree. She's only available once you've unlocked her by playing through Normal difficulty and rescuing her. Existing accounts that have finished Normal difficulty before start with her unlocked.
- Added six new world areas (in all three difficulty levels) across three new tilesets. There are three new quests.
- Added a grand finale boss fight.
- Added eight new end-game Maps including a new tier of level 78 maps.
- Added 11 new Unique Items, three of which are designed by our community and eight which can only drop in the Domination and Nemesis leagues. Six of those eight appear in either challenge league, but there's also one that is exclusive to each league.
- Added two new Halloween Microtransactions - Demon Hand Pet and Decapitation Helmet Skin. They're for exclusively for sale until the end of November 1.
- Added six new monster types, three of which are exclusive to the new areas. The other three appear in previous areas also, such as the Cannibals who have replaced the Scavengers in early Act One.
- Many existing monsters have received new abilities when added to the new world areas.
- Added a new Rogue Exile - Xandro Blooddrinker, based on member of our community who won the "Well Dressed Exile Competition".
- The Eternal Laboratory has been visually revamped and is now present in the Solaris Temple. In Normal and Cruel difficulties, it contains lore.
- Added a new curse, Silence, that monsters can use on you.
So many things. A point of clarification, however: as you may have noticed, the new class, the Scion, is a) not a brand of notoriously box-shaped cars and b) unavailable to those who haven't beaten Path of Exile on normal. So just because all these new features are in, that doesn't necessarily mean you'll have access to everything right off the bat.
Path of Exile should be flipping the launch switch for everyone any second now (if it hasn't already). Did you spend any time with it while it was in beta? If so, are you happy with the direction it's headed in?