The first time I entered the world of Aion I was impressed by the visually appealing graphics of not only the game itself but the cry engine. Aion its a beautiful game in both visuals and game play.
When you first create a character you have 2 choices on race. The Elyos faction (good) and the Asmodian faction (bad). Aside from the vast array of character customization there are 8 different classes to choose from.
Templar: Tank with very little DPS
Gladiator: Good DPS but not as good a tank as Templar
Assassin: Melee up close range scout
Ranger: I believe this one exsplains itself
Spiritmaster: Pet class with mid to high DPS, also very good debuffs and CC.
Sorcerer: Very good top notch DPS and some single target CC.
Cleric: Main healer class not so good DPS
Chanter: Cross betwene a Bard and a healer. They dont get any group heals or cures but do pretty well with spot healing. Has better DPS than clerics but not top notch.
Now lvls 1-10 allow you to get the basic feel of the game as well as test out your archetype. Each class starts out in 1 of 4 different archetypes. Warriors (glad and temp), Scouts (sin and ranger), Mages (Spiritmaster and Sorc) and finally Priest (clerics and chanters). Once you hit lvl 10 you get to choose your main class based off of the archetype you chose. Along with the ability to fly/glide. You can only fly in certain areas and where you cant fly you can glide. Keep in mind tho you have a limited amount of time you can fly. Wings and other upgrades on equipment can increase these times.
Once you reach 20 you get the option to choose your first stigma abilitys which are basically abilitys you can equip and you only get a certain amount of slots to equip them. This allows for some diversity as to how you want to play your class. You can also start PvP'ing once you hit 20 (which is some of the best pvp I have ever tried). You cannot pvp in the abyss untill you hit 25. (main pvp zone)
Now on to equipment! Each archetype gets to wear their main equipment type and any below it. Warriors = Plate, Scouts = Leather, Mages = cloth, and Priests = chain. You can use what is called "Manastones" to equip on each piece of gear you get (depending on how many socket it has). These can range from HP boost to Physical crit increase. These are almost like Adornments in EQ2 and FFXI only you can choose what you want unlike FFXI. You also get the chance to upgrade your gear by using extraction tools. You can buy these tools from a general goods merchant in any city. These are used to extract stats from a piece of gear and implement them into the gear you wish to wear. You wont aquire all the stats on the gear you are sacrificing but you can do this as many times as you want. There is a chance for the upgrade to fail and you lose 1 point each time (does not go below the default gear) it fails. When it succeeds you get a +1 added to the gear, I personally have seen an upwards of +10 on a weapon.
Just like other MMO's Aion has the ability to join a Legion (aka Guild). But unlike those MMO's this game is based around team organization and having a legion to take part in. Not only does your Legion lvl up but you also have to contribute as a whole to make the legion work. Being apart of a Legion is probably one of the first things you should do once you get a feel of the game. I am not saying to jump into the first one you see, but get a feel for one you like and take part in helping it grow. This game is highly based upon RvR (Raid V Raid) pvp and grouping. You can solo lvl by questing but later on you get quests that forces you to group in order to complete them. You also get the choice to design your own legion cloak once your legion has hit lvl 3. You can even upload the image form your computer to stick on your cloak along with other customization options. As your legion grows especially once you are able to acquire abyss points from pvping and various other activity's your legion gets put into a server wide ranking system. This allows you along with other legions on that server to compare how well you are doing against others. I would have to say this game is very competitive and can bring out the strong urge in everyone do do their best and focus on the tasks at hand.
Aside from everything ive learned in Aion there is one thing that sets this game apart from other MMO's. That is the balance of the classes. Yes there are not many classes to choose from compared to other MMO's but they are all very well balanced. It brings into play "the class is as good as the player" and never before have i seen that shine as much as it does in Aion.
So if you are a pvper at heart and wish to dive into an amazing MMO. Well i suggest giving Aion a try and see how much you like it. I assure you, you wont be disappointed!