Path of Exile provides a dizzying array of options for players to tinker with. Players need to look at the passive tree that spans more than 1,000 nodes, analyze the equipment they can modify by forging currency, and consider the skill gem settings they have.
1. Use Path Of Building
Before players begin to spend dozens of hours theorycrafting, path of exile players should install path of building. While the path of exile website lets players create a skill tree for their character, path of building allows players to create, tweak, and share virtually every aspect tied to a build.
2. Focus On A Few Mechanics
A common pitfall many theorycrafters fall into is planning a build around too many mechanics. Most build guides in path of exile focus on one or two skills, multiple ways of scaling the effectiveness of those skills, and usually a few defensive layers.
What some players will incorrectly do is focus on three or more means of dealing damage at once. For example, trying to scale physical damage, Impale effect, bleeds, and adding elemental conversion all in one build is exceptionally hard to pull off well.
This can also apply to defensive layers. Another notable example is using both Mind Over Matter and the Archmage Support Gem to utilize mana as an offensive and defensive resource. Thing is, players will need exceptional mana sustain or they’ll have no mana to utilize either mechanic. Focus on maximizing a couple of mechanics to make damage and defense scaling easier.
3. Account For Flasks
Flasks are one of the most overpowered mechanics in path of exile. When players have constant uptime on their flasks, they become exponentially tougher to kill and can even gain a large boost to their DPS. When devising which gear is best for a build, come up with the best flasks for a build and remember to keep them active while playing.
4. Add Defensive Layers
Besides obtaining 75% elemental resistances, nearly every experienced Path of Exile player will state that obtaining life nodes is critical to staying alive. Reaching a bare minimum of 160% life is a start, although reaching 180% to 200% increased life from the passive tree is preferred.
Defensive layers go beyond a high life pool, though. Any build that focuses on the right-hand portion of the tree should consider grabbing the Acrobatics keystone along with other sources of dodge to avoid attacks. Summoners, Gladiators, and those that use shields should obtain as much block as possible. Life or energy shield regeneration can also be invaluable for mitigating ground degens, ignites, and poisons.
5. Research Build Mechanics First
Researching how certain skills or mechanics work can save a large number of headaches while devising a build. Besides playing the game and reading the path of exile wiki, the best thing a player can do is look at other build guides.
Take note of what other players are using for their skills, passives, and gear. If a skill is too new or niche to find high-quality guides for, go to poe.ninja and look up that particular skill. View the passive trees most builds spec for, preview the gear they use, and take note of their gem setup including support and utility gems.
6. Don’t Plan Around Best-In-Slot Gear
A major mistake many players make while devising a build is giving their character the best gear possible. Most players will never obtain mirror-quality gear for their build, so why make a build that relies on them? Focus on gear that is feasible to purchase, farm, or craft. This may require us to purchase poe currency online.
7. Plan For A Realistic Character Level
Another common mistake is players make their characters assuming they will reach the level cap. Reaching level 100 in path of exile takes an incredible amount of time that most players don’t have. Those that wish to complete Maps should aim for level 85, and those with either a lot of time or want to focus on a couple of builds should consider reaching either level 90 or 95. This should keep the build realistic and make it easier to decide which passives take priority.
8. Use Jewels
Jewels are a type of item that can be socketed into the passive skill tree. Since they count as an item, they can be crafted as if they were any other item type. A good Jewel is worth as much, sometimes more, than a good notable in the passive tree.
Virtually every build in path of exile has a few jewels in their build to enhance their offensive and defensive capabilities. Some of the strongest builds in the game take advantage of cluster jewel stacking, allowing players to effectively craft their own passive tree. There are also a few Unique jewels that augment how the tree behaves, allowing for further customization and skill point efficiency.
9. Avoid Using Too Many Uniques
Uniques are build-enabling items in path of exile that can offer incredible boons. That power typically comes at a cost, though, usually in the form of defenses. Utilizing too many Uniques can make capping resistances, obtaining a high life or energy pool harder, or make it much harder to upgrade a character. Some of the best builds might avoid this rule, but that is due to an immense amount of aura effect scaling or the usage of mirror-tier gear. Unless the player is making a niche build, remember to use a few rare items to round off resistances and obtain some powerful influence modifiers.
10. Plan A Build
By far the most important aspect of making a build is to give it a goal. Is the build attempting to farm Awakener level 8 Sirus? Analyze Sirus’ abilities and mitigate their damage to make it safer. Will the build farm Delve? Consider scaling movement speed and life regeneration to minimize the effects of the darkness. Create a goal for the build to reach before calling it a failure or major success.
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