Grinding Gear Games reveals new expansion for Path of Exile
A day after revealing that the first issue in their Path of Exile comic series is available, Grinding Gear Games has unveiled the expansion that the comic reveals the backstory of. This expansion, which will arrive on August 20, 2014, is called Path of Exile: Forsaken Masters, and will arrive as a free update.
The expansion introduces new content based on the plight of the Forsaken Masters of Wraeclast, who are seven men and women that are masters of their trade and exiled by a powerful entity of corruption and tyranny known as Dominus. You will cross paths with each of these masters, being able to take on unique quests, training, mission variations, item crafting and modification options, secret, customizable towns (known as Hideouts), tiers of Hideout decorations, and more.
In addition, the expansion features the Rampage and Beyond Challenge Leagues, revamped boss fights, new lore, new Unique items, new support and skill gems, a player-versus-player Spectator Mode, and more. Here’s the synopsis of the content that Grinding Gear Games sent us:
Train with the Masters
As players roam the wilderness of Wraeclast, they will sometimes encounter a Forsaken
Master. All seven Masters have their own unique missions that they either need help
with, or are willing to train Exiles to handle. For example, Haku asks players to
cleanse an ancestral area and recover a lost Karui spirit. Vorici provides training
in the art of assassination. As players progress through the eight levels of reputation
with each Master, more of what these Masters can offer will be unlocked.
The seven Masters each have their own style of mission and each mission has many
potential circumstances. As players delve deeper into the realm of Wraeclast, the
pool of available mission variations increases, offering players new and unexpected
challenges — all of which can occur anywhere in the game.
Hideouts: Customizable Towns
In their extensive travels throughout Wraeclast, the seven Masters have discovered
ideal locations for an Exile to use as their own secret Hideout. Once a Master’s
trust is gained, the player will be able to create their own personal and customizable
town. Masters residing in a player’s Hideout will offer them daily Missions and
training as well as advanced crafting options. Players are also able to expand their
Hideouts to use as personalized Guild Halls.
Craft and Upgrade Items
Each master specializes in crafting different types of items. As a player gains
reputation with a chosen Master, they will gain access to more of that Master’s
unique crafting options and abilities, such as manipulating an item’s sockets or
crafting special modifications. Masters also function as vendors that sell items
ranging from Skill Gems to Unique items. At higher levels, each Master also sells
Magic items with a specific, new, build-defining modification. These can be used
as-is or crafted further with either the new Hideout Crafting Benches or the
Orb system to create powerful items.
The expansion also includes 16 new Unique Items, some of which are exclusive and
may only be found in one or the other of the new Challenge Leagues.
New Challenge Leagues: Rampage and Beyond
With the release of Path of Exile: Forsaken Masters, two new three-month Challenge
Leagues will begin, providing players with an opportunity to demonstrate their mastery
of Path of Exile. Like the Challenge Leagues before them, these new leagues have
a set of extremely difficult challenges to complete. Players who complete five
of the eight total challenges will be rewarded with an exclusive microtransaction
effect. Finishing all of the eight challenges will unlock another, different, exclusive
microtransaction effect. The first 50 players to complete all of the challenges
will receive a Rampage/Beyond t-shirt.
Full details regarding Rampage, the upcoming standard Challenge League, and Beyond,
the upcoming hardcore Challenge League, will be unveiled in news updates on the
Path of Exile website on August 8 and 15 respectively.
Revamped Existing Content
To make for more intense and surprising battles, many of the existing boss encounters
in Path of Exile have been revamped. More lore has also been added for players to
discover, with snippets of Wraeclast’s history scattered throughout the existing
acts. Additionally, large portions of the Passive Skill Tree have been redesigned,
particularly in the Witch, Shadow, and outer Ranger class areas. Extensive balance
improvements supported by these changes have been made to the core game.