POE Efficient Act Guide: Act IMar-09-2020 PST path of exile
Welcome to the Path of Exile efficient act guide, in this series of guides I will go over each of POE's guides and give you the most efficient route possible for progression and levelling, as well as explaining the various challenges each area offers. I won't be going over all side quests and things that are needed for 100% completion, just things that are important for efficiency. This guide is aimed at the beginner and is not as deep as some of POE's various other topics. In this first guide I will cover Act I, when the player first reaches the shores of Wraeclast and begins their journey.
Because of the random generation nature of POE it will be impossible to cover exactly your experience, but you should be able to get an idea of what you're meant to be doing. Zones in POE have randomly generated areas which are based on predefined tilesets, thus areas will look familiar on each play through but the layout will be different. Some zones have more randomly generated variety than others, in fact some are static and will be the same on each play through.
This guide won't be class specific, nor will it feature or reference any specific builds or give advice on what would work for a build. Instead everything you learn in these guides will be generally applicable to all classes and builds. There are many enemies along the way, rather than saying which specifically the kill it is recommended to just attack large groups that are on your path.
The Coast and Mud flats
Every exile begins washed up at the Twilight Strand, thrown from a charter ship that took you from Oriath. When you get to your feet pick up the weapon and kill the zombie, both of which are near you. From this kill you will receive your first skill gem, socket this skill gem onto to your weapon and then leave this area, running alongside the shoreline. It isn't necessary to kill any monsters in this area, you will be able to defeat the first boss “Hillock” with relative ease, just make sure to use your life and mana flasks when needed.
After you defeat him you can enter the acts town “Lioneye's Watch”. In this town you should stock up on all the items you need including uniques, flasks and anything else that will help your early leveling. NPC's can give you quest rewards on completion, although you can just start the quests without talking to them. Once you think you are ready, leave the town and enter the coast. This is quite easy to navigate, just stick to the right side of the cliff. If you don't have a quicksilver flask then you should complete the Mercy Mission quest on Tidal Island (located near the coasts waypoint), to complete this just move around the side of the island that doesn't have a cliff until you make to it “Hailrake”, he will give you a medicine chest. Use a portal to return to the town and claim your reward of the quicksilver flash. Back to the cliffs, once you reach and tag the waypoint, continue onto the mud flats which is the next area.
When you reach the mud flats just follow the small river to the 3 rhoa nests, one at a time, which will give you the needed quest items (shells). The nests can usually be found towards the centre of the mud flats zone. When you have all the shells you will need to place them within a wall which will give access to the submerged passage area. The wall can usually be found to the right or above the mud flats.
For this section the layouts can be quite varied but there are two main categories of layout. When the waypoint is to the left of the entrance then you can just move down through the zone until you reach the chasm bridge. If the way point is on your right then also move down but also go in a right direction to find the same bridge. Once you reach the bridge via either route make sure to place a portal upon it as this will give you access to a side zone. For now though, traverse across the bridge and reach the next section, the ledge. The ledge is very simple, and is always the same with a waypoint in the middle, go along this zone until you reach this waypoint. Teleport back to Lioneye's Watch and then take your portal back to the submerged passage.
The next zone is the flooded depths, similar to the ledge this zone is straight foward and linear in nature, there are many bridges but also dead ends so make sure to check the map regularly. You will eventually come to the Deep Dweller, killing this unique boss will complete the quest Dweller of the Deep also giving you a skill point. Return to the town to complete quests by talking to NPCs.
The Climb and the Prison
Return to the ledge via the waypoint and go in the direction of the totems that are near the waypoint, you will reach the climb at the end of this zone. The most common layout and path of the climb will involve you moving towards the top right until you reach the lower prison. Before you reach the prison, and if this is the first character you have on the league then you will have to kill the Faun (unique) in order to save Navali, after that she will be available to you in all main towns and you can use her to receive prophecies.
The lower prison zone has many varied layouts so can require a fair amount of trial and error to navigate. Once again if it's the first character on the league then you will discover the trial of ascendancy, you can do this trial now or later it is up to you. The upper prison has a fairly similar variety in layouts to the lower, with multiple possible routes to take. Make your way round this level of the prison until you reach the Warden's Chambers.
There is a path of blood in the Warden's Chambers you can follow it around and you'll come to Brutus. Brutus is fairly tricky for new players, whether using melee or ranged you should use lots of movement to avoid his attacks. Head back to town and receive your quest rewards, make sure to use the movement skill from Tarkleigh on leap slam or flame dash as this will enable you to navigate ledges and gaps easier.
Head back using the waypoint, at the prisoners gate head down the ledge using your new movement skill, or one of the ramps if you don't have it and then continue through the canyons and various openings until you reach the ship graveyard.
The Ship Graveyard and Merveil
The ship graveyard has extremely varied layouts so is hard to describe all possibilities. Firstly you should find the waypoint which should be near the start. Once you reach Fairgraves move away from the entrance of the plateau he is on and then look for either the cavern of wrath or the ship graveyard cave, you can't predict which you will reach first.
In the cave, collect the allflame, continue on to the cavern of wrath and take the waypoint. Next you should defeat Fairgraves, completing a quest, return to town for your reward particularly your level 12 active skill gem. Head back to the cavern of wrath using the waypoint. There are a few layouts in this zone but they are all fairly linear without many deep dead ends. Follow it round until you reach the cavern of anger. The cavern on anger is also fairly linear, a good sign you are on the right path is the many piles of gold you will see. Keep going and you will reach the final part of act I, the boss Merveil.
To defeat Merveil it's recommended to have cold resitance on, and just try and avoid her attacks as much as you can, she does teleport around the area quite a bit but generally shouldn't be too hard for a player to defeat, as long as you have maintained good levelling throughout act I. You have now completed act I.
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