2013's year of gaming is coming to a close and that means Neoseeker is deep in deliberation over its "Game of the Year" award. This month, each of Neoseeker's 10 nominees for Game of the Year will be profiled. Join in the discussion, speculate on the nominees, and subtly persuade us which game deserves our highest award.
Path of Exile is my guilty pleasure nomination for Neoseeker's Game of the Year award. Where a majority of the other nominations on the list are big, flashy titles or precise, meaningful indie games, Path of Exile is on here for one very specific reason: I love clicking everything, I love exploring every map, I love picking up loot, and I love more than anything spending hours delving into the passive skill tree.
As a point and click ARPG based heavily on Diablo II, Path of Exile has some pretty high expectations to live up to. At least in that regard Path of Exile more than delivers, providing a bleak, gothic look that's mature, haunting and adrenaline-fueling, as well as dishing up mechanics of such depth that players will be theory-crafting from now until the game dies. Hopefully that's a long, long time from now.
Why Path of Exile?
- Abyssal Customization: I say abyssal, because the customization options in Path of Exile are deeper than any ARPG I've had the pleasure of playing -- and I've played a lot. That's taking into account the huge, wide-open Passive Skill Tree as well as the innovative way Path of Exile allows players to equip skills and augment them on the fly. Loot isn't just a path to power, it's a path to options, which is a freedom I've never experienced in an point and click ARPG.
- Respect: Perhaps the single most impressive aspect of Path of Exile isn't any one feature or mechanic, but rather the obvious amount of respect Grinding GearGames has for its ARPG predecessors and community that shows in every moment of the game. They set out and delivered something that everyone can be proud of, themselves, their audience, and their fellow gaming developers who understand just how complex of a task it is to create this type of ARPG in the modern gaming environment.
- So Free: Path of Exile is one of the good types of free-to-play games. It provides access to the entirety of the game at no up front cost, but provides such a quality experience that many player will willingly support the game's development in a myriad of ways.
There we go, Neoseeker readers. This one's for me. I'm a huge fan of post-Diablo point and click ARPGs and Path of Exile is the best one that I've played in years. Hopefully the fact that it's free, on top of outstanding, will ensure another generation of gamers are hooked from a young age just like I was.
Neoseeker's Game of the Year 2013 Nominees
- Tomb Raider
- The Last of Us
- BioShock Infinite
- Gone Home
- Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Saints Row IV
- Path of Exile
- Papers, Please
- Metro: Last Light
Neoseeker's Game of the Year awards are decided by editors Lydia Sung and Rory Young. Follow them on Twitter at @RabidChinaGirl and @bluexy , or read their news, reviews and features every day here at Neoseeker.
Make sure to get your vote in for the Neoseeker Community Game of the Year! The current leader is Pokemon X/Y, naturally.