Five reasons to play Aion (continued)

3) Player vs Player vs Environment (PvPvE)

The Abyss is a giant PvP-enabled zone, but it also includes the very best PvE rewards in the game. Aion's third faction, the Balaur, may be NPCs but they will generally attack the more dominant side, hoping to bring relative balance to PvP. Finally, players are encouraged to raid their enemy's PvE lands by traveling through rifts (aka portals) to complete quests and generally cause havoc.

Players gain Abyss Points (AP) by participating in PvPvE, which raises their Abyss Rank. These points lead to new titles and can be used as currency to purchase better gear and even buffs. The best explanation we've heard is that Aion's PvP is roughly in the middle between the RvR you'll find in Warhammer Online (relatively low impact with a positive sum) and Darkfall (relatively high impact with risk and loss). You gain AP by killing players and NPCs in the Abyss but you also lose them when you die. That said, it isn't so harsh that someone can fully loot your corpse like they can in DF.

4) Character customization

Character customization reveals itself in numerous ways in Aion. First there's character creation. Next there's modifying your character's stats, weapon procs, and abilities. Finally, there's additional visual customization beyond the creation process in the form of armor skins and dyes.

Aion's character creator is only slightly behind Champions Online and City of Heroes in terms of visual diversity. You are presented with a number of basic models, but once you unleash the power of the various physical attribute sliders, the options are nearly endless. Any character can be made to look like a halfling, dwarf, human, or half-giant. Heck, someone even managed to make a reasonable facsimile of President Obama.

Once your character is made, you can boost your various attributes through manastones, godstones, and stigma stones. Manastones can be socketed into gear to adjust your base stats. Godstones can be applied to weapons and add various procs like chance to sleep, stun, or do additional damage. Stigma stones can be applied to your character in various combos, adding powerful abilities that will likely surprise your enemies.

Lastly we have armor skins and dyes. Don't you hate it when you finally get that set of gear you've been striving for and then you look just like everyone else? Aion addresses this by allowing you to re-skin any piece of your gear to look like something else. We've heard you can even make chain look like cloth. Adding to that, you can dye your armor in a variety of different colors to spice things up even more.

5) Flight and gliding

If "It gives you wings!" wasn't already already trademarked by another brand, Aion would have surely scooped it up. Flight and gliding are probably the most unique features of the game. The controls can be difficult to master, but once you do, a whole new level of game play opens up to you.

Every character gains wings once they achieve daevahood (level 10) and your flight timer increases as you raise in level (or add boosters). This basically means that everyone has a swift form of travel, but they must use it strategically. Your wings may be clipped in some areas, which can be annoying, but the entire Abyss zone is unlocked for flight. This leads to aerial combat that you won't find in any other MMO.
Want to know more about Aion? NCsoft invites you into the world of Atreia where the Elyos and the Asmodians fight each other and the evil Balaur for control of the shattered planet. Check out out all our coverage of this highly anticipated MMO!
This article was originally published on Massively.