- Developer: NCSoft
- Release Date: 2008
- Platform: PC
- For fans of Korean MMOs
Aion launched back in 2012 and is an MMORPG veteran in its own right, but the MMO has changed a ton over the years so last year we got Aion Classic that delivers an old-school Aion experience. So, is it worth playing Aion or Aion Classic in 2022?
The first thing you need to know about Aion and Aion Classic is that they’re two very different games. If you’re thinking of trying out either one, you need to be aware of what you’re getting into.
Aion Classic is, as the name suggests, a recreation of the original game. It’s been built from the ground up to deliver that authentic Aion experience from back in the day.
On the other hand, Aion has undergone a complete overhaul and now features a more action-based combat system along with updated visuals and a whole host of new content.
Both Aion and Aion Classic are free-to-play games and they both feature an in-game store where you can buy things like cosmetics and boosts. However, it’s worth noting that the store in Aion is much more prevalent than the one in Aion Classic.
Aion and Aion Classic differ a lot when it comes to gameplay. Classic feels a lot more like a traditional MMORPG with its slower pace. It feels very much like the many WoW clones that came out in the mid-2000s.
On the other hand, Aion has suffered over the years from feature creep and feels overwhelming to new characters. The UI is very complicated with too many buttons and menus. The gameplay is also dominated by autoplay features and grinding.
Combat is also a bit more fast-paced in Aion and feels a bit more fluid. Many mobs that are impossible to kill for a solo player in Aion Classic can usually be one-shot by anyone in Aion, even dungeon bosses are one-shotted in the early game.
Being a Korean MMORPG, Aion also has a ton of cosmetics, many which do not fit into the game’s setting at all and will ruin all immersion. Things like school uniforms, cat costumes, and chicken mounts.
Aion is surprisingly good-looking for such an old MMO. The graphics have been updated over the years as well.
The colors are vibrant and the world is beautiful to look at, even if it feels a bit empty nowadays.
The sound design is one of Aion’s strongest points. The game features an excellent soundtrack with a mix of Asian and Western influences. The sound effects are also top-notch and really help bring the world to life.
Aion’s population has been in decline for years and it’s now down to just a few thousand players. The game is pretty much dead at this point. On Steam the game peaks at only around 200 players.
Aion Classic, on the other hand, is a lbit more popular. However, the playerbase is very spread out and it can be hard to find people to play with. The game is also plagued by botters and gold farmers.
Bots are so prevalent in Aion Classic that they’re practically impossible to avoid. Many players have given up on the game because of them.
The problem has resulted in the implementation of the Auto Hunt system in Aion (not classic) which lets you grind AFK.
Is Aion Free-to-Play?
Aion is free-to-play but it’s a pretty typical Korean Free-to-Play game. The game is heavily pay-to-win and unless you spend money on the game, you will be at a severe disadvantage.
Aion Classic is a bit more generous to free players but it’s still very much a pay-to-win game.
Is Aion Pay-to-Win?
YES! Aion doesn’t even try to hide that its pay-to-win.
The game starts off easy enough and you can get by without spending a dime but as you progress, the game quickly becomes more and more difficult and grindy unless you’re willing to spend money.
Aion Classic is slightly less pay-to-win than the retail version but paying for power and advantages is still very much possible.
Aion Vs Aion Classic
So, which one should you play? If you’re a fan of the original Aion then you’ll definitely want to check out Aion Classic. However, if you’re new to the game or you’re looking for a more modern MMO experience, then Aion is the way to go.
Ultimately, the decision of which game to play comes down to personal preference. Neither of the versions reflect what Aion was back in its prime.
Aion is a beautiful but empty world that’s slowly being abandoned by its player base. The game is fun but it’s also very grindy and pay-to-win. If you’re looking for an MMORPG to play in 2022, there are better options out there.
Aion Classic might be worth checking out if you’re a fan of the original game but it’s also very empty and has its own share of problems.