1. When will Path of Exile be released?
We haven't announced a specific release date, but we anticipate entering public closed beta in August 2011 and gradually expanding the pool of testers until we're in open beta, and then release.
2. How do I sign up for the beta?
By creating an account on the site. We will be picking beta users from the set of people who are signed up. This account also allows you to post in our forums and use community features.
3. What character classes can I play?
There are six character classes in Path of Exile, and we've currently announced five - the Marauder, the Ranger, the Witch, the Duelist and the Templar. These classes represent the attributes of strength, dexterity, intelligence, a strength/dexterity hybrid and a strength/intelligence hybrid, respectively.
4. What are attributes?
Our three attributes are strength, dexterity and intelligence. Path of Exile's character classes, items, monsters and skills (both active and passive) are designed around being aligned with some ratio of these attributes. For example, a short sword might be aligned with 50% strength/50% dexterity. This means that it would be most suitable for use by a strength, dexterity or hybrid character class. Similarly, a monster that is aligned with 100% intelligence would have its damage and armor values biased in favor of intelligence mechanics.
5. What's the difference between the character classes?
Besides the obvious aesthetic differences, the classes in Path of Exile are quite diverse. Each starts with different base attributes, and each has a specific preference for the direction of the route they'd like to take through the passive skill tree. When a Marauder picks a strength passive skill, he earns more strength than a Ranger would picking the same skill. It's still completely possible to make a Marauder with lots of dexterity, or a Ranger with plenty of intelligence, but you'll earn the largest attribute rewards by sticking with your character's preferred attribute. The game's hybrid classes won't earn as much for specializing, but are able to invest in either of their attributes without penalty.
6. What does Path of Exile cost to play?
Path of Exile is 100% free to play, for everyone, forever. Our website will allow the purchase of many in-game perks and aesthetic upgrades, but all of these are completely optional, and players can have a complete, fulfilling gaming experience without spending a penny.
7. I still don't understand how it's free to play - what's the catch?
There is no catch at all, once you download the client you are free to play for as long as you like, with no charge. The purchasable perks do not convey any gameplay benefit, but help you create a unique look for your character and its fighting style.
8. What makes Path of Exile different from other games in the Action RPG genre?
Countless things make Path of Exile different, but here is a short list of the ones we feel most set us apart.
A gritty dark fantasy setting, supporting a hostile cutthroat atmosphere.
Free to play on online servers with persistent character storage in a secure economy.
A unique active skill system that will allow any class to use any skills in the game and augment/combine them how they see fit.
A haunting fixed-perspective 3D game world, constructed with incredible attention to detail.
Deep passive skill system that eschews the mere allocation of stat points when levels are gained
Incredibly complex and sophisticated item system with literally unlimited possibilities.
A random generation system for monster loot that is dynamic and tremendously exciting.
9. What platforms are supported by the game?
Path of Exile will initially launch with support for Windows. No Mac support has been announced yet, but it's something we'll investigate after release.
10. Will you support languages other than English?
Yes, we intend to support other languages once the game has been released.
11. Are there defined roles for players, like tanking, healing and sustained damage?
While we don't have concrete defined roles for any class, there's enough customization with passive and active skills that a player can focus on one type of play. A Marauder, for example, can load up on hit point buffing skills and taunts, and a Ranger could focus purely on offensive skills. We do not intend to have a dedicated healer role.
12. What is the level cap?
A level cap of 100 is currently planned, but players will find that they level up more slowly as they gain experience. You'll need to be very high level and be very well-geared to contend with the end game content on the hardest difficulty level. These diminishing returns mean that the game doesn't suddenly end when the player hits some arbitrary point. If a player wanted, they could improve a single character for years on end.
13. I really love PvP, do you support that?
Yes! In addition to the PvE content, Path of Exile will contain many PvP elements, including random arenas, a ranking system, seasonal ladders and unique PvP item rewards. The game has a tremendously fun and rewarding PvP experience.
14. What are the hardware requirements for Path of Exile?
Path of Exile is designed to run on a huge variety of systems, from an everyday laptop to a top of the line gaming rig. Our detailed art is designed to not only look great, but also reveal additional detail as the resolution is increased to the maximum of 2560x1600. Exact system requirements will be determined closer to release.