It’s time for a new approach for Lineage II — and that’s something you don’t hear us saying too often about a 17-year-old MMORPG. NCSoft has announced that Lineage II Aden, a separate and new solo-friendly experience for the game, will be launching next month.

Aden will offer “the same core gameplay of Lineage II, but with classes tuned to focus primarily on solo play.” There will still be all the group content and PvP you can handle, but “waiting around for a party to level or grind is a thing of the past.” The game’s 36 classes are “tuned to be self-sufficient while hunting” and there will be six solo dungeons and a simplified leveling system, making it easier to reach max level.

Two of those 36 classes — the Sylph Storm Blasters and the fearsome Death Knight — will be new and exclusive to Aden. The first fires elemental attacks from guns while gliding around the battlefield on an “elemental hoverboard,” while the second is a melee magic user based on the Death Knight raid boss from the original Lineage that can transform into a skeletal monster.

Players of Lineage II Aden will also have combat pets that you can equip with your own gear and can obtain a Wyvern flying mount by participating in a special launch event, cleverly titled “Why Burn?” L2A will be free-to-play, supported with L2 Coin, which can purchase items that can be traded between players, and N2 Coin, which is purchased with real money.

All in all, it’s an interesting way for NCSoft to try and attract new customers to a game that, while once mega-popular, is now a bit long in the tooth. Lineage II was made during a different time in the MMO world, when group content was necessary at nearly all stages of progression, but that’s not what most players these days are looking for. I’m not sure that it will result in a huge influx of new players to the Lineage II franchise, especially with so many other, newer, options out there for MMO players, but it can’t hurt to try it.

Lineage II Aden will launch on August 11. You can learn more about it on its dedicated website.

Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.

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