Register Account   |   Forgot Password ?

possible account termination when using illegal leveling or illegally obtained gold

Home » Site News » Aion: What Will You Be? Cla...

Aion: What Will You Be? Class Play Styles

Tags :     

My last Aion article looked at what starter weapons players would have access to while leveling and it provided a little information on how the different classes played. This article goes further into detail on the general play style for each class. Hopefully it will help players decide on which class or classes they wish to try out once they have access to the game. The Aion website information guide has descriptions of each class, but after reading them and comparing them to my in game experiences, I feel that their guide inflates the grandeur of a class more than giving much detail.

Aion follows the four fantasy archetypes: warrior, rogue, mage, and priest. The warrior tanks, the rogue deals up close damage, the mage deals ranged magical damage, and the priest heals people. Those are the broad descriptors that can be used to define each class. Thankfully that is not all there is to each one. Aion uses a rigid format for their classes (there are some options in the form of "Stigmas" that offer new abilities), not granting the same large amount of personal customization that say WoW gives to its players for each class, but that is because it is not necessary. Instead, each class is already given a varied amount of tools and it is up to the player to choose how they will use them. Almost every class has access to a minor healing ability for example.

The four starter classes later grow into their mature form, letting the player choose between eight new options: Templar, Gladiator, Assassin, Ranger, Sorcerer, Spirit master, Cleric and Chanter. Enough introduction, here is how the different classes tend to play.

Templars

Templars are the best tanks in the game. If you decide to play a Templar then you will be tanking things at some point, there is not much of an option when you are the best there is. A Templar cannot pull off the same damage as the DPS classes, but they can hold their own and so should not be left out of a group if there is already a Templar in it. They have the standard tanking abilities for an MMO that uses a threat system: Taunts, a lot of attacks that deal increased threat, and passive abilities that increase threat from damage. My personal favorite tanking/CC ability though is one called Divine Grasp: your target and all enemies within 20 yards of your target are dragged towards you with spirit like ropes. If you play WoW, it is the same as a Death Knights' Death Grip, except it grabs everyone instead of just one person. When wishing to deal damage they will equip a two handed sword, but the real essence of a Templar involves using a shield.

Defensively, Templars are well covered. They can cast a damage absorb shield on themselves, enter a defensive stance which limits their offense but increases their block chance, and then also use their shield for a variety of stuns. They have one major healing ability which not only heals them for 25% of their health, but also increases their maximum health by 50% for 3 minutes. They can also use stigma slots for more self heals if they desire them.

Crowd control is limited at the lower levels, but near end game Templars actually come out with a good amount. There is the Divine Grasp which I already mentioned, as well as all the shield stuns. They have two different CC immunities they can use, but both are on relatively long cool downs. Switching weapons to a two hander gives access to yet another stun, and Templars can stigma slot for a ranged stun as well. Combining either of the CC immunity abilities with their movement speed increase ability means that Templars can be extremely mobile for short amounts of time. Of course, they still pay for all this with their lower damage output.

Gladiators

Gladiators are the other option warriors can choose. They can also tank a little, but their defensive abilities are not as strong as the Templars. Gladiators are meant to emulate the ideal fighter. They have access to every physical damage weapon in the game, though their biggest strength is the polearm. They are a real DPS class, but can be brought for off tanking at the higher levels of play. While leveling, as long as they equip a shield and know what they are doing, Gladiators work just fine for main tanking as well. They maintain a couple self healing abilities, but not as many or as powerful as the Templar.

Offensively, Gladiators shine in both single target and multi target situations. A number of their abilities end up dealing area of effect damage. Unlike Templars who walk around with a lot of stuns to use when they wish, Gladiators tend to focus on snares. A ranged snare, an AoE snare that also deals damage, and many single target snares are all available. The Gladiator is also one of the best classes at debuffing a target to increase the physical damage they take, lowering both the defensive and evasion rates of their targets.

They share the same sprint ability that Templars have, but not the snare removals, so they are easier to lock down with crowd control. Fighting a Gladiator head on in melee combat will be daunting though due to the way knockdowns work in Aion. Dealing enough damage with a single weapon can knock a target to the ground, essentially the same thing as a stun except completely random, and Gladiators are the class that deals the most two handed weapon damage in the game. Gladiators and Templars alike are important to siege battles, as they gain abilities which let them deal massive amounts of structural damage which other classes do not have access to.

Assassins

Assassins are the stealthy creatures in Aion, and while they may not like it, stealth has a timer on it. When stealth is activated, you have 30 seconds to move around at a reduced rate, with a cool down on the ability of 1 minute. Stealth can be used to take other players and creatures by surprise, but it is not what the class revolves around. There are not any abilities in the game that actually require stealth either. At least half the classes can activate stealth detection abilities, so a stealth attack requires a lot more than just moving around in stealth mode. The Assassin class is designed around quick single target burst damage, small stuns used both defensively and offensively, and a little bit of hard crowd control.

Assassins are the best melee class at closing distances with a ranged player. They have two abilities which allow them to instantly teleport towards a target, as well as a toggle mode which lets them move faster than anyone else at the cost of a constant drain to their mana. Some of their abilities are positional, so this increased mobility is important to dealing the most damage possible. Players with a high lag rate may want to stay away from playing this class, since positional abilities will go off whether or not you are at your opponents back, it will just deal almost no damage if you are not behind them. The best way to combat any latency issue will be stuns of course.

They use a rune system, carving magical designs into the bodies of their targets and then making them explode for damage or status effects. They can also add poison to their weapons for a random chance at increased damage. Assassins are really all about the critical damage, their abilities allowing them to hit some of the highest burst damage numbers in the game. Surprisingly, while Assassins have such great mobility, they lack snare breaks and the ability to snare their targets themselves. So while they can move rapidly and stun their targets, they are easily trapped into crowd control.

Rangers

Rangers are the main kiting class. Because they were originally scouts they actually maintain their ability to use stealth. Rangers are a tricky class as they maintain their melee abilities, a couple which are great to use defensively, but then they also gain all these new ranged abilities. Due to Aions weapon concept, a Ranger cannot have access to both their melee abilities at the same time as their ranged abilities; they must take the half second or so to swap their weapons. Rangers focus on kiting, traps, and not much else. Even killing a mob in PvE on their own can require kiting since they do not have a pet. There is nothing stopping a Ranger from using their bow in melee range, but without any real tanking defenses and a very limited health pool, it is not a good idea. One of the more interesting things to do with rangers is jump shooting. It is possible to run at full speed away from a target using jump turning to continually pour arrows into them. There are also a few issues with animation canceling on some of the casted shots, essentially removing the cast time and therefore allowing you to maintain your mobility.

Rangers focus on single target ranged damage, and it takes them quite awhile before even gaining access to an AoE attack. Traps are single target and can either root targets in place or deal extra damage, there is even a special one which increases the cast time of anyone stuck in it, so an anti-caster trap. They have access to a ranged stun, a ranged silence, as well as a ranged snare. Rangers also gain one of the same defensive abilities that Sorcerers have in the form of a backwards teleport. Offensively on the other hand, they are a little like Gladiators in that their critical damage hits from their bows can knock back a target, temporarily stunning them.

They are actually rather sore when it comes to crowd control, since they are never meant to be that close to the action in the first place. All of their crowd control is single target, so attempting to fight multiple players, or even just multiple mobs, is difficult. They lack health and their only real defense is range. One thing that is really fun about them though is their ability to transform into a Mau. A furry creature that can run faster and deal increased damage, a Ranger in Mau form is basically the ultimate kiter.

Sorcerers

Sorcerers are direct damage magic users. They employ a large amount of magical snares, immobilizers, and knockbacks to keep their targets at range. All of their abilities focus around the four elements in the game, Earth, Air, Water, and Fire. Fire is typically used for direct damage, Water for damage and crowd control, Earth as damage over time abilities and self buffs, and then Air for debuffs. Like most magic casters in MMO games, Sorcerers suffer from an acute lack of health. They can teleport backwards to escape from danger, surround themselves with an earthen shield to absorb damage, or freeze in a block of ice to make them immune to everything. They are one of the better anti-melee classes in the game, having the hardest time with Assassins but they can deal fine with Gladiators or Templars.

While they deal direct damage they do have a couple AoE spells. They also have a large amount of offensive crowd control. They can put targets to sleep with a casted spell, and then use AoE root spells to hold their targets in place, as well as their ranged knockbacks and stuns that can be chained off of some of their water spells. They even have an instant cast ranged snare and can choose to eventually learn an AoE sleep spell if they want. Even with all this, the Sorcerer truly shines when it comes to damage dealing. Assassins and Rangers may deal higher burst damage over a couple seconds, but given a little more time to cast and the Sorcerer will easily out do them. They are the highest single target damage dealing class in the game.

Spirit Masters

Spirit masters are the only pet class in Aion. Pets level up with the player and actually transform from rather ugly looking blobs into majestic creatures at the maximum level. I have not seen any max levels in game, for obvious reasons, but if you have not seen them yet look them up, I will probably end up leveling a Spirit master just to watch the pets grow. Spirit masters rely on their pets to a large degree, each pet helping out the player in different situations. Unlike the Sorcerer who focuses on direct damage spells, the Spirit master works with damage overtime spells.

Spirit masters do not have a large amount of roots or immobilize abilities, but they have a few, and they can also cause targets to run away in fear. Spirit masters are also best at debuffing their targets to magical damage, removing targets resistances to different elements, allowing themselves, their pets, and Sorcerers to deal more. Their largest weakness is the lack of kiting tools they have, where the Sorcerer can usually run forever, the Spirit master will probably end up snared and stuck trying not to die. They are the only class that can offensively remove buffs from a target though, as well as really put up a lot of debuffs. They can self heal by dealing damage to a target and absorbing a portion of the enemies health. The pets are not there just for show and minor damage, a good number of the Spirit masters spells, some of the most powerful, can only be cast through these pets, so if you are into that kind of added micro management then this is a good class for you. How they eventually compare in damage to the other DPS classes I am really not sure, but I cannot imagine it being a problem.

Clerics

Clerics are the healing class in Aion. Like the Templar is the tank, the Cleric is the healer. As a class they give up many offensive abilities so that they can heal. AoE heals, single target large heals, instant heals, heal over times, the Cleric has access to all of it. They are also the only class that can purge harmful magic from friendly players. Their offense is relegated to a few holy spells and the ability to summon stationary damage pets, so Clerics are best played in groups where they can offer support instead of try to take on everything themselves.

They have a couple root spells to help them kite targets, but probably will not kill anything in PvP in a 1v1 situation. Of course they will not die either. They can sacrifice their own health to create defensive barriers that deal damage to attackers, and can even resurrect themselves if they die, as well as resurrect everyone else, eventually gaining access to a mass resurrection ability. Like the other classes, they continue to have access to the core abilities they learned as a Priest. While they do still have these melee abilities, they are best served using their ranged spells to deal damage. Both Clerics and Chanters gain a decent amount of protection from physical classes in the form of chain armor and the ability to equip shields. If you are looking to play a purely support class then a Cleric would be a good option.

Chanters

Chanters are an offshoot of the Cleric that, rather than going after healing spells exclusively, also learns more about melee combat. Chanters are the best buff class in the game, from increased health to faster group speed movement and attack rate buffs as well. A few people have compared the Chanter to the traditional RPG class of the Bard. They can imbue their personal weapons with spells, increasing their damage output, as well as use aura type buffs to help out their allies. They have access to most of the healing spells a Cleric does, but cannot resurrect friends or cleanse debuffs from them.

Much like the Gladiator, Chanters tend to knock people down a lot with their giant staves, so just having one hitting you can be a danger in a group PvP situation. Chanters enjoy a stun and a few debuffs, but besides that they do not have access to any on demand crowd control. Instead they make themselves look like one of the worst targets to attack with their healing and high defensive rates, all while dishing out moderate damage in the form of spells or melee attacks. They offer mana back abilities that can be used mid combat for group members in case anyone is running low, and are a great utility class, but are not really one that can steal the show. Like the Cleric, a Chanter can be the backbone to a group, providing everything needed by a healer and more. Both the Cleric and the Chanter are healers, the main difference is if a player wants to be purely defensive or wants to provide some added offense at the price of healing ability.