With the release of Lost Ark in Western regions, fans are worried about the status of Path of Exile. However, the two games are not even in the same boat.
For the past years, Path of Exile has been the reigning king of ARPGs. The game’s status was retained due to the lack of actual quality competition aside from Diablo 3. However, with the release of Lost Ark in Western regions, some fans are wondering whether farming PoE Exalted Orbs is better than playing Smilegate’s MMO ARPG. Fortunately for diehard Path of Exile players, Lost Ark will not overthrow the game.
PoE Is Very Different from Lost Ark
Grinding Gear Games’ ARPG has stark contrasting features from Smilegate’s MMO ARPG. Fans of PoE have been worried about the status of GGG’s hit game ever since Lost Ark came out. Gamers have discussed the Korean MMO ARPG as the next premiere action roleplaying game. However, players have started to notice that the difference between the two games is more than just the PoE currency and Lost Ark gold.
As a game advertised to be in the same genre as PoE, Lost Ark’s average of around 300,000 concurrent players overshadowed the premiere ARPG’s 20,000 average active gamers. However, the Korean MMO ARPG’s only similarity with PoE is its isometric view. Its gameplay is more similar to MMOs like Final Fantasy XIV and World of Warcraft than ARPGs like Path of Exile and Diablo 3.
The Left Clicks
Perhaps the most noticeable difference between the two games is the relevance and importance of the left mouse button. For most ARPGs like PoE, Diablo, Last Epoch, and Torchlight, the left click is a significant source of damage. Hack-and-slash action roleplaying games rely on rotations between auto attacks and skills to ensure consistent upkeep of damage.
Path of Exile does the best job of making use of the LMB. Fans of the genre have agreed that PoE’s auto-attacks are the most functional and deal the most damage out of all the ARPG games. Meanwhile, Lost Ark barely uses the left click since its playstyle relies more on skill rotations. The LMB in Korean MMO ARPG is non-existent.
Character Progression and Customization
While both games have excellent progression features, Path of Exile ultimately shines better for an ARPG. Lost Ark’s progression is very straightforward and provides some variety to it. However, the Korean MMO ARPG cannot compare to the freedom that PoE brings.
In Grinding Gear Games’ hit game, the players’ power-up relies on their investment in a massive skill tree that dictates what kind of passive and active skills their characters will use. The only restriction gamers have in PoE is that the skill tree still has limitations. However, due to the massive number of abilities available, fans won’t even have enough skill points to invest in all of them.
Meanwhile, Lost Ark’s progression is very linear. Though there are a variety of skills and add-ons that adventurers can choose from, the number of abilities in Smilegate’s game per class pales in comparison to PoE. At the very least, the MMO ARPG attempts some sort of variation via their Tri-Pod system.
The most significant difference between the two games’ progression and character customization is their active skills. Lost Ark follows the standard of other MMOs wherein the abilities available to a character depend on their class. Meanwhile, Path of Exile does not rely on any job to dictate what skill the players can use. Instead, fans can choose which abilities they will employ by equipping various gems.
Graphics and Visuals
Lost Ark shines better in this category due to its similarity to MMOs. Smilegate emphasizes excellent visuals and animations to entice fans to enjoy the game. This strategy is similar to how theme-park MMOs like FFXIV work. The game features stunning visuals and vibrant skill animations.
Meanwhile, Path of Exile has multiple reasons for bad visuals to the Korean MMO ARPG. GGG’s hit game focuses more on improving its gameplay and hack-and-slash mechanics than enhancing its graphics. In addition, PoE has been around for much longer, and the graphic editing and engines it used when it started were far inferior to current systems used by newer games.
Overall, for fans worrying that Lost Ark will dethrone Path of Exile as the king of ARPGs, the two games are very different as LA leans more closely to being an MMO. However, this point doesn’t mean that PoE is off the hook, as the Korean MMO ARPG can still entice gamers to play in the world of Arkesia instead. Hopefully, many gamers would remain in Wraeclast to farm more PoE Exalted Orbs.