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Path of Exile: Betrayal Expansion Announcement

This December, alongside the game’s launch on the Playstation 4, you’ll get to experience the game’s biggest expansion this year: Path of Exile – Betrayal.

Betrayal follows the journey of Jun Ortoi, the main character you’ll be interacting with, from the Order of the Djinn. Together, you and Jun will investigate an organization called the Immortal Syndicate. The Immortal Syndicate has found a way to revive people from death without raising them as undead using an artifact that they stole from Jun’s order. You’ll be able to view information you’ve discovered about who is in charge of the Syndicate and their goals on a classic film-noir style investigation board, showing identities, capabilities, locations, and relationships between members of the organization.

As you play through the league, you’ll learn of the four different arms of the Syndicate: Fortification, Transportation, Research, and Intervention. As you learn more about the inner machinations of the group, you’ll work towards discovering their mastermind and raiding their stockpiles of valuable items.

In each game world area, you’ll encounter some Syndicate activity. Each encounter relates to an arm of the Syndicate, and each has a unique objective for you to accomplish. Once you’ve completed one, you’ll have at least one subdued Immortal Syndicate member present. In some cases, it may be more than one if other members arrive to help a friend, leader, or subordinate. Each member will present you two options from a set of four to choose from. You can interrogate them to gain information about the safehouse for that branch of the Syndicate. Once your safehouse knowledge maxes out, you can do a safehouse instance and gain some cool treasure. Bargaining options can vary wildly and can change the layout of the organization drastically. You will only be given the bargain option if no other Syndicate members are present to witness their cohorts squealing.

Naturally, you’ll have the option to execute them, if you don’t have any more appealing options. Since the Syndicate can revive their members from death, this is a good thing for that member. They will be revered for giving their life for the organization, and will likely be promoted, gaining ranks and items for later use. This option allows you to ramp up the risk and reward by guaranteeing a harder but more lucrative enemy later. Also characters in this expansion will remember how you treat them and what you do to them, so keep that in mind.

The final option you could be presented with is Betray. It requires a bit of setup, since it only works if multiple syndicate members are present who share a positive relationship of either friendship or leader-subordinate. If these criteria are met, then one of them may offer to betray the other taking their position in the syndicate and removing ranks from the other.

Each Syndicate member is associated with a different type of item, and each arm of the Syndicate has a different spin on how their items work; for example, the Research arm has more experimental properties on their items. Advanced players will be able to plan exactly what type of item is needed to perfect their character, and manipulate the Syndicate accordingly. You don’t need to run spreadsheets to enjoy the expansion though; the investigation and unique player-driven story are designed to be enjoyed just as much by casual players who aren’t worried about min-maxing their character.

Another aspect of the Betrayal league is that targets can drop items with Veiled mods. These mods will appear as runic writing, and must be taken to Jun to be unveiled. This will reveal three modifiers that can be placed on the time. These are all new mods including powerful unique effects not found on any other item. You get to pick one of the three that show up, and it gets added to your crafting repertoire to be crafted onto future items in your hideout’s workbench. The more you unveil a particular mod, the more potent its effect will become.

Master crafting has had its user interface completely revamped for this expansion, and the way crafting recipes are obtained has been reworked.  Previously, you had to repeat Master missions hundreds of times to level up Masters in order to learn recipe sets. Now, you’ll no longer need to level up masters. Instead you’ll find the recipes by completing various objectives within the Master missions like clearing certain rooms in an incursion temple, unveiling certain mods in Betrayal or encountering specific encounters in Delve.

Yes, you heard right. The old Forsaken Masters, with the exception of Zana, have mysteriously vanished. In their place, NPCs from recent fan favorite leagues rise as new Masters to provide you with missions, help  you craft items, and find hideouts. Einhar helps you with Bestiary league missions, Alva returns to guide you to the Incursion temple again, and Niko once again needs help delving into the Azurite mines.

To help guide players into this content, daily Master missions have been moved to the Atlas of Worlds, the game’s end-game map system. Periodically, certain maps on the Atlas will have an icon showing they have an active objective. When you enter the map, you’ll encounter the respective master whose icon was shown and they give you a mission. You won’t need to rely entirely on randomness to control when you’ll meet masters.

The Betrayal expansion also bolsters the end game with four new randomized maps. These maps are based on the community’s favorite tilesets introduced in the Delve expansion, and they’ve been fleshed out to full end-game tilesets.

Aside from the new content, Betrayal introduces 15 new unique items, many of which are exclusive to the Betrayal league. There are new and revamped skills as well, allowing for new playstyles! Winter Orb is a channeled orb that floats above you shooting frost-bolts at nearby enemies. Storm Brand zaps three nearby enemies, damaging the area around each enemy struck. You can support these gems with things like increased area support gems to create interesting damage patterns and a whole new way to play.

Betrayal will launch for PC on December 7th, and in mid-December for Xbox One and Playstation 4.

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