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Potential new player here. Hearing some good things about Aion recently, sounds like it has been somewhat improved and I've been looking for an MMO fix, stirred up by the Wildstar/ESO buzz.
Firstly, I don't care for asian games. The androgynous males, sexualized females and stylized sameness of it puts me off. But somehow, even though Aion is clearly asian, it overcomes my usual predjudices. It has a certain something that transcends the usual look, even though it is still there in many of the character models. I was able to roll a fairly tough looking orc looking dude. But there is one thing about JRPG style I cannot stand, and that is adding Mechs to a fantasy game. During character creation, the Technist description appealed to me. But as soon as I chose the class, the character customization screen defaulted to a schoolgirl in a giant, cutesy kitten robot. That's an excellent way to send a mature western adult screaming in the other direction. I ended up switching to Scout, and have just landed in the starting area on Tiamat as Asmodean.
In short: with the new expansion, will I be forced to rely on a mech at some point, perhaps in endgame? Has mech use supersceded the usual sword n sorcery combat model? If so I'll just move on down the road, but hopefully it's just an option or small aspect of the game. Unfortunately, quite often in MMOs, once a new expansion is out, it becomes the only content worth playing, gear-wise, in endgame. That is probably my biggest pet peeve with MMOs in general, and the reason I frequently quit as soon as the first one comes out.