Assault on Balaurea's storyline shifts the focus from the struggles between the Elyos and the Asmodians (although there is still plenty of that too) and turns the spotlight on the trouble making Balaur. Daevas from both factions unite together in a common cause to invade the Balaur homeland and work to put an end to their menacing acts of war. Make no mistake though, the opposing factions may have a common enemy but that doesnt put any damper on the war between the Elyos and Asmodians and they will fight their own battles against each in a continuing PvP saga.
New zones offer new content and a smoother progression
The expansion is clearly geared to entice higher level players back into the fold and those who heed the call will not be disappointed in what they find. The two new overland zones are surprisingly big in size given that they only actually cover a five level spread rather than the 20+ level spread of the older zones. This gives a wonderful effect of a great amount of gameplay space with more relevant content for those players. No longer will you have to trudge through low level mobs searching for something that you can actually defeat in a fair fight or rub elbows with those unwashed low level masses!
Keeping in line with traditional zone build, you will find the familiar format of soloable content upfront and group focused elites in the back of the zone. This is important because no one wants to stumble over elite mobs when they are out doing some light solo questing.
In addition to the full overland content, players will also enjoy several challenging dungeons that range from impressive to Omg, you had BETTER be well geared! as well as a raid style zone for 12 players that will make a name for any legion that manages to conquer that bad boy.
If you are more of a lone wolf dont worry, the expansion still has something for you. Three new solo instances were added for levels 18-22, 37-41, and 50-55. These quality instances are not only fun but also very rewarding and casual players may just find themselves rushing to the next level set that will get you access to one of these!
Now while the solo instances are awesome, there really isnt much else in the way of lower level content which is a bit of a disappointment for me. I prefer expansions that bring in a range of new content as they tend to do a much better job of encouraging former players to return as well as add to re-playability for capped players who start up new toons. All players do get pets which are adorable and a lot of fun to collect, but other than basic utilities, they don't really add much to the game.
Another point to mention is that while NCsoft did add a lot of quests and the expansion has a better flow of progression than the rest of the game, players striving to get to level 50 to enjoy the new content will still be hitting the grind. Yes, there are tons of repeatable quests but it is still grinding if you have to run those repeatable quests ten times in order to see any progress on that experience bar.