With titles like Diablo IV and Path of Exile recently dominating the ARPG genre in the past and near future, it's a tough market for indie developers to break into. However, Eleventh Hour Games isn't just any indie studio, with their epic ARPG, Last Epoch, they've been steadily carving a niche for themselves, and their latest update “Runes of Power” might just be one of their greatest.
A New Mastery Class Enters
The "Runes of Power" update introduces the Runemaster, a new Mastery Class for the Mage. The Runemaster is touted as the most adaptable and customizable class in any ARPG on the market, and that's a bold claim. The example given by the team is that the Runic Invocation skill alone offers 40 different invocations based on previously cast spells. The versatility this provides will grant Runemasters exceptional flexibility on how they want to build their character.
But Eleventh Hour Games didn't stop there. They've given the Runic Invocation an extensive skill tree that follows along with the numerous node options the team has put together for more than 100+ of abilities in the game. These nodes will modify and enhance the core ability, changing it to fit your playstyle, with an example being that you can convert an Ice Wall invocation into a Flame Wall, or change how long the ability cooldown is by sacrificing something else, such as damage. It's this level of depth that the team has pushed for to set Last Epoch apart. The team has been so confident they've sized up their biggest competition, and put out some comparison stats.
Earlier this year, Eleventh Hour Games released the "Convergence" update, which brought a slew of optimizations and new content. With the 1.0 launch set for December 2023, the team has been in a madcap dash to get in as many features and polish as much as they can ahead of the full release. It's clear that the studio is committed to refining their game and pushing the boundaries of what an indie ARPG can offer, but the game still has quite a bit to go, with some bugs, especially with some Unity crash issues as well as language and localization, among several others, still on the list of issues to be ironed out ahead of launch.
The Road Ahead
The future for Last Epoch still looks great. The team is actively pitting their game against powerhouses like Diablo IV and throughout their early access the team has already garnered positive reviews on Steam, with over 800,000 units sold. We’re looking forward to the December launch and can’t wait to see what Eleventh Hour Games is able to accomplish by then.