Path of Exile 2 Ranger Class overview: Skills, playstyle, and other features

Path of Exile 2 Ranger Class
Path of Exile 2 Ranger class was unveiled in March 2024 (Image via Grinding Gear Games)

A Path of Exile 2 Ranger class overview was unveiled during the latest GGG Live held on March 21, 2024, showcasing 15 minutes of exclusive gameplay footage. The Ranger class in the original game is all about cheesing different bow skills, and the Path of Exile 2 rendition takes this formula much further.

To sum up the Path of Exile 2 Ranger playstyle, the developer commentary in the featurette says how they take inspiration from the agility of elven archers in The Lord of The Rings:

"The dream of fast bow gameplay is Legolas... so that's what we wanted to deliver."

This article will review everything we learned about the Ranger class in Path of Exile 2 from the gameplay overview, including the particularly game-changing vaulting skills.


Can you move while shooting arrows as the Ranger in Path of Exile 2?

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You have full freedom of movement while shooting arrows — be it with regular shots or with skills. You can stay on the run and cast most arrow-related skills without stopping, but there is a movement speed penalty during the casting animation.

Coupled with WASD movement, and an innate dodge maneuver, this makes Path of Exile 2's Ranger a mobile DPS class that can easily kite enemies.


All Path of Exile 2 Ranger Class skills shown in the official gameplay overview

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The Path of Exile 2 Ranger gameplay overview shows off 14 different arrow skills and what to expect from the skill variety in general. As such, much of the familiar Ranger-class flavor returns from the original Path of Exile.


Elemental arrow skills return from the first game

You can tip your arrows with a vast repertoire of elemental skills. Two of these elements were shown off extensively: lightning-based arrow skills to electrocute enemies and plant-based ones to poison them.

  • Lightning Arrow (Returning skill from Path of Exile 1): Deals lightning damage and chains to other nearby enemies in a radius.
  • Stormcaller Arrow: Sticks an arrow into an enemy, marking it. After a delay, a lightning bolt from the sky will strike the enemy, dealing high single-target damage.
  • Poisonburst Arrow: A near-identical recreation of Caustic Arrow from Path of Exile, Poisonburst Arrow poisons groups of enemies (chaos damage in the first game).
  • Gas Cloud Arrow: Create a lingering gas cloud where the projectile lands, which poisons all enemies within it. It can be detonated with an explosion spell to deal burst damage.
  • Explosive Arrow (Returning Skill from Path of Exile 1): Shoots an arrow that explodes in an area.

Rain of Arrows variants

The Rain of Arrows skill in the first game was a hit for Ranger players in many leagues, where it became meta, and Path of Exile 2 is expanding arrow skills in this direction with further elemental effects.

  • Rain of Arrows (Returning skill from Path of Exile 1): Causes a rain of arrows to fall down on an area for a duration, which can also cause on-hit effects depending on linked Support Gems.
  • Lightning Rod: Shoots a lightning arrow into the air that plunges back into the ground and creates a small lightning area of effect. This essentially creates a trap that lingers on the ground, which 'attracts any arcs of lightning nearby, causing them to explode again.' This means you can combo it with Lightning Arrow for even higher crowd damage.
  • Vine Arrow: The arrow creates a small plant where it lands, which sends out tendrils to nearby enemies, slowing them down and poisoning them. You can also poison the plant, which will transfer the poison proc to all enemies caught. This can be used to put multiple stacks of poison into an enemy or a group of enemies.

Evasive vaulting skills that also deal damage

You can vault while using some ranger skills (Image via Grinding Gear Games)
You can vault while using some ranger skills (Image via Grinding Gear Games)

You can set up damage-dealing support gems to make evade spells in the first Path of Exile and deal damage.

However, the Path of Exile 2 Ranger Class overview unveils new 'vaulting spells' that help you gain some space while zoning enemies with elements.

  • Frost Escape: Jumps backward and shoots a freezing arrow at the ground. As one would expect, the freezing arrow can also apply the freeze ailment for some innate crowd-control element.
  • Electrocuting Rod: Vault over a nearby enemy and stick an 'Electrocuting Rod' in them. This brings a charge-up gauge that suppresses (i.e., stuns) the enemy when it fills up. A 'Neural Overload' Support Gem was also shown off that can trigger the stun when the bar is at 50%.
  • Poisonbloom Arrow: Creates plant pustules on the ground that explode to deal damage and poison nearby enemies. The pustules themselves can be poisoned with skills like Poisonburst Arrow, making them much more potent.

Skill-shots

Snipe deals a guaranteed critical when released at the right moment (Image via Grinding Gear Games)
Snipe deals a guaranteed critical when released at the right moment (Image via Grinding Gear Games)

Another new addition to the Path of Exile 2 Ranger class is skills with a timing-based mechanic. These require some practice and precise input, but they are much more potent than normal skills when you pull them off.

  • Snipe: Charges up an arrow. If released at the right moment, it deals guaranteed critical damage.

Additional support skills

Like with any other character build, the Path of Exile 2 Ranger class relies on linking support gems to specialize and customize a particular skill. However, there are also a handful of auxiliary standalone skills that serve to empower other skills.

  • Barrage: A cooldown-based skill that causes the next arrow skill to fire thrice.
  • Sniper's Mark: Marks an enemy. When you land a critical on that specific enemy, you gain a Frenzy charge.
  • Plaguebearer: A reservation skill that uses 'Spirit.' Equipping it creates a counter that can be charged by poisoning enemies with any skill and unleashed at any point for a poison explosion that deals damage based on the amount charged.

Although many details are shown in this gameplay overview, more Ranger skills remain to be discovered. We will hopefully get to experience those when the Path of Exile 2 beta goes live.


Check out related guides on Path of Exile:

Path of Exile Tier list || Path of Exile Ranger builds || When does Affliction league end?

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Edited by Sijo Samuel Paul
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