I have divided the guide up into a number of short sections. Feel free to make edits directly to the wiki, if you feel something is missing or could be explained better! There should not be a lot of "new" information here, but I found it helpful to have it all compiled into one place for new players.
Factions (Race) Edit
There are two playable factions in the game. The Asmodians inhabit one half of the world called Asmodae, while the Elyos inhabit the other half called Elysea. Without getting too much into the history, it can simply be said that these two races are each other's sworn enemy. They are both humanoid and similar in appearance, however the Asmodians have been living in darkness for nearly 1000 years and their appearance accordingly has a "dark/evil" appearance to it. The Elyos have been living in perpetual sunshine over the same time period. Although it may appear that this is a reference to heaven/hell or angels/demons, this is not the case as it applies to the game. One is not "good" and the other "evil" - it just happens that both are at war with each other.
As far as gameplay is concerned, there is not a lot of difference depending on which race the player chooses. Starting location is obviously different, and the quests that players playing each faction will be different, but both factions have access to the exact same classes and professions to play with, unlike in some other MMORPGs where certain classes are only available to certain races/factions. There are some minor differences in the spells/abilities that classes of one race or the other has access to, but these are not severe enough typically to cause someone to want to play a particular faction just to get access to a specific ability. As an aside, gender also does not make a difference in the game.
There are other non-player controlled (NPC) factions in the game that the character will interact with, most notably the Balaur, a faction that is enemies with both the Asmodians AND the Elyos. The Balaur won't affect new players too much until they get past the beginning areas in the game, so I won't say too much more about them here.
Classes are handled a bit differently in Aion than they are in some other MMORPGs. There are four of what I refer to as "Base" or "Primary" classes. These are the Warrior, Scout, Mage, and Priest. Players choose one of these four classes when they create their character.
- Warrior - A combination of tank / melee dps. Warriors wear plate armor and skills include damaging attacks as well as damage mitigation measures.
- Scout - Melee dps. Has the ability to stealth (can't be seen by enemy) and features very damaging attacks from melee range. Not much protection though, so a scout relies on killing enemies fast before they can kill him/her.
- Mage - A ranged spellcasting dps. Mages cast damaging spells, and also have abilities to slow the enemy down. Essentially a mage tries to attack from range, and then kill before the enemy reaches the mage to attack.
- Priest - A combination of healer, and dps. Priests don't do as much damage as the other classes, but rely on wearing the opponent down slowly while healing themselves (and others if need be) as required.
Players will play one of these chosen classes until they reach level 10, at which point they transform from a human (as everyone starts out), into a Daeva (basically a demi-god, with wings). Once becoming a Daeva, players leave their base class behind, and instead choose from one of two sub-classes related to the base class as follows.
- Warrior - Players can choose to become a Templar, which is essentially the tank class in the game, or a Gladiator, which is one of the melee dps classes.
- Scout - Players can choose to become a Ranger, whos abilities are primarily related to ranged attacks with a bow and the ability to set traps, or they can become an Assassin, which focuses on melee-range attacks and stealth to kill targets.
- Mage - A mage can choose to become either a Sorcerer, who learns even more damaging ranged spell-based attacks, or a Spiritmaster, who has the ability to summon elemental pets and command them in battle.
- Priest - Priests can become either a Cleric, who is the primary healing class in the game, or they can become a Chanter, who has the ability to provide powerful buffs (beneficial spells) to themselves and their allies.
The purpose of having players play the base classes first is to give them the ability to try out the play style before choosing the secondary class which will be their class for the rest of the game. Each base class contains elements of the play style of BOTH of the secondary classes that are associated with it. For example a Warrior has tanking abilities similar to what a Templar uses, as well as dps abilities which are used by Gladiators. Actually, the specialized classes make use of the abilities learned in the base class, and expand on them.
Starting Region Edit
New Asmodian characters will find themselves in a region called Ishalgen at Aldelle Basin, while Elyos will find themselves in Poeta at the Akarios Plains. This won't be a detailed walkthrough of these areas, but there are some things to be aware of. First, don't be afraid of being attacked unless you attack something first - feel free to wander around at will. Until you get about half way through the starting region (about level 5) you won't find creatures that will attack you if you get too close to them.
Various people will give you quests in the game. There are two primary types of quests in the game (and a third related to crafting but I'll discuss that later). People with a blue arrow above their head will give you "regular" quests, which could be relatively unrelated to the progression of the storyline. People with yellow arrows or stars above their head will give you "campaign" quests, which progress you through the story line as you complete them. You can access your quest log at and time by pressing "J" to see the quests you are currently working on and their objectives. One feature that is not obvious right away is that Aion has a somewhat rudimentary built-in "Quest Helper". From your quest log if you click on one of the hyperlinks to a requirement of the quest, a "dictionary" window will pop up describing that item. If you click on the "Locate" button at the bottom of that window it will put a purple "x" on your map to show you the general vicinity that item or creature can be found.
Which brings us to the map. There is a small mini-map in the lower right corner of your screen. You can see a radar of creatures in a cone in front of you. White dots are neutral creatures - those that won't attack you unless you attack them first. Green dots are friendly people, such as those that you can interact with. Red dots (which you won't see until about level 5) are creatures that will attack you if you get too close to them. Pressing "M" brings a full size map on your screen, and pressing "N" will superimpose a faded-out map on your screen so that you can look at it as you navigate your way around. Movement by the way is the same generally as other games of this type, using the mouse and "WASD" keys.
Quest GIVERS who are IN RANGE of your radar will show up as a blue or yellow arrow on your map. Quest RECEIVERS (those that you turn completed quests in to) will show up as a symbol on your map no matter how far away you are, which is useful if you can't remember who gave you a particular quest or where they were located.
Your First Town Edit
As you progress from level 1 to 9, you will generally move in a linear manner from one sub-area to the next across your starting region, sometimes backtracking to give or receive a quest item to/from someone you've already met. Shortly after you complete your first 2 or 3 quests, you'll be sent a short way up the road to your first small town - it's more of an outpost really, but it does have some amenities. For a start this is where you will receive your first campaign quests, as mentioned earlier. Also you will have access to a various vendors, to whom you can sell any unwanted items to.
You will find your first Obelisk in this town. For a small fee you can "bind" yourself to it. When you die, assuming you are not resurrected in the field by a Cleric, you will resurrect at the last Obelisk that you bound yourself to. So it is convenient to bind yourself close to the area that you will be doing most of your questing near.
Each base class has a trainer in the town. Players can buy "skill books" from the trainer to learn new skills. Each skill book has a minimum level associated with it, before which it can't be learned. Players can still buy the higher level skill books if they want though (assuming they have enough money), so that they can be learned in the field without having to run back to the trainer. More about skills later.
Transportation in the starting area will be primarily by foot, however the town does provide players with a quicker way to travel from the town to another sub-area on the other side of the region - a flight path. For a fee, players can fly back and forth between these two locations, but not until the other area has been discovered by the player on foot (so you've got to run there the first time, but after that you can fly). There is also a teleporter in town, which will allow you to teleport to the faction's capital city (Sanctum for the Elyos; Pandaemonium for the Asmodians) initially, and other regions after your character has progressed far enough to explore them.
Equipment and your Cube Edit
Items and equipment are color coded based on how useful the item is to you (color of the items name when you look at it, not the item itself). Grey items are completely useless, and should always be sold to a vendor. White items can be worn or used, but are generally pretty weak. You will come across a few green items that drop occasionally and these are above average usefulness (and also more rare as a consequence). You won't find blue or orange items unless you are extremely lucky, until later in the game.
You can look at your character's inventory and the items equipped on your character at the same time by pressing the "P" key. This will show you a generic humanoid figure with a number of "slots" surrounding it. Below, you will find your Cube which corresponds to a backpack in other games. Your cube initially has 27 slots, but this can be expanded by paying a fee to a "Cube Artisan", the first of which can be found in the starting area town. You can equip items by either clicking or dragging them to the appropriate slot, or right clicking which will slot them for you automatically. If you hover your pointer over an item, it will show you the stats of that item, and alongside it shows you the stats of the item you have equipped. Stats that are better are highlighted in green, while stats that are highlighted in red are worse. This should help you make a decision as to which item you should equip or not.
Mana Stones Edit
Occasionally creatures killed will drop an item called a Mana Stone. These are stones that each have an associated stat associated with them such as "+4 Parry" or "+2 Attack". These stones can be applied to any of your equipment that has a Mana Stone slot available (which can be seen by hovering your pointer over that piece of equipment in your inventory. Adding stones to your equipment allow you to customize your character somewhat, and can be done by right clicking on the stone to activate it, and then left clicking on the piece of equipment to add it to.
Power Shards Edit
Creatures sometimes also drop power shards. These are an item that can be attached to a particular weapon by dragging it to the small box adjacent to the weapon. You can activate the power shards at any time by pressing the "B" key (by default). Each hit with that weapon will do additional damage according to the type of power shard being used. Each hit also consumes one shard, so they tend to get used up quickly. Players should save them for when they are fighting a tougher than normal creature, or they are low on health and need to finish off a creature quickly.
It is beyond the scope of this guide to go into too much detail regarding all of the various stats that affect your character. As a new player, you will simply want to wear the best equipment that is available to you, generally by hovering your pointer over a piece of equipment and choosing whichever item has the most green (better than what you're wearing) stats. For armor, make sure you are wearing the heaviest armor you can for your class - that is plate for warriors, chain for priests, leather for scouts, and cloth for mages.
Combat is essential to your progression through the game, as in any other MMORPG. In the lower left corner of the screen, you will see a red HP (Hit Points) bar, which represents your health, and a blue MP (Mana Points) bar which represents your mana. If your HP bar becomes empty then your character dies and must be resurrected either by a cleric or (more commonly) at the last obelisk they were bound to. MP are used to cast spells/use skills. A number of MP is subtracted depending on the MP cost to use that skill. The cost and other information about a skill can be seen by hovering your pointer above that skill.
To see a complete list of skills available, players can press the "K" key. This brings up a window with a number of tabs that lets you see all of the skills the player currently knows, a full listing of all skills available to their class, crafting skills, and also the various Skill Chains available, which I'll get into later. At the bottom of the screen is the player's action bar, which contains icons representing skills. These icons can be rearranged on the bar however the player wishes, and as new skills are learned, players will have to enter the skill page by pressing "K" and drag new skills down on to the bar so that they can be used.
To attack a creature, simply select it by left clicking on it. Then to attack, press one of the number keys corresponding to an attack-type skill and your character will start to run toward the creature. You can also attack by right-clicking on the creature. In between using your special skills, your character will "auto-attack" at a period determined by your equipped weapon speed. Most skills have a "cooldown" associated with them, which limits how often that ability can be used. You can see the cooldown remaining on a skill by watching how it turns back from completely gray (full cooldown) to its normal color (can be used again).
Chain Skills Edit
After learning some new skills, you will eventually learn some of your "chain skills". These skills are designed to be used sequentially one right after the other. When you use the first skill in a chain, it triggers the second skill to make it available. This can be seen by its flashing icon appearing next to your character on the screen. You can either click on the icon to activate the next skill, or if the skill happens to be on your action bar, you can just press the number associated with it. Generally skills get more powerful the farther into a chain that they are.
After a battle it is likely your HP and MP will be low. To recover you can either use a bandage by using your Bandage Heal skill (available to all classes), or by resting. The Rest ability is not on your action bar initially. Players can add it by pressing "K" finding it on the appropriate tab, and dragging it down to the action bar. It can also be toggled by pressing the "," key. Resting recovers HP and MP slowly over time, but at a faster rate than the standard regeneration rate.
Grouping with others Edit
All of the content in the starting area is easily soloable by individual players. It's even easier with friends however! You can form a party by typing /invite and then the character's name in the game.
Upon reaching level 9 you will be given a campaign quest that once completed allows you to travel to your faction's capital city and ascend to become a Daeva. In other words you earn your wings and also get to choose your specialized class! Completing the quest itself is very straightforward. Upon completing it you will be given the option to be teleported to the capital by the NPC that you turned the quest in to, or alternatively you can pay to be teleported at the Teleporter in town. Now that you've become a Daeva you're not really a newbie anymore, which brings us to the end of this guide! .... but there are still a number of things you might be wondering about.....
As a Daeva you can only fly in certain areas. In the lower right portion of the HUD you will see a flight indicator. When this turns green you can fly either by clicking on it, or pressing the PgUp key. Hover your mouse over the flight indicator to see the rest of the controls. A circular timer surrounds the indicator while you are in flight, and indicates the amount of flight time you have remaining. You start off with a maximum of 1-minute flight time, but this can be increased as you progress through the game.
Dungeons/Instances and Raids Edit
There are PvE dungeons, raids, and world bosses in the game, but the first one of these is the Fire Temple at about level 30. You will however start to see elite monsters that require groups at about level 20.
PvP and PvPvE Edit
The only way to fight against other character's of the same faction is to request a duel by right clicking on them and then choosing that option. You will have the opportunity to start fighting the opposing faction at around level 20 by entering "rifts" to the Abyss. End game (level 50) content is a combination of PvP and PvE at the same time - hence PvPvE. Players must attempt to gain control of castles in the Abyss by attacking other players and NPCs, using siege weapons obtained in PvE raids. See the PvPvE wiki for more details on this.
I didn't get into Crafting in this guide because there are a lot of other aspects to learn, and you don't get access to the crafting trainers until you reach the capital city. There are a number of professions that can be learned however, ranging from alchemy to armorsmithing, and crafters can create some of the most powerful items in the game so it is worthwhile to learn if you have the time (and money! - it's expensive).