Path of Exile Beginner's Guide

09.03.2023 - 11:05:40
Game Guides , Path of Exile , POE Gameplay Guides

Path of Exile Beginner's Guide

Overview: Classes & Attributes

In Path of Exile, there are seven classes and three core attributes - Strength (red), Dexterity (green) and Intelligence (blue) - that each class is associated with. Each class begins at a different point on the Passive Skill Tree and for every 10 points of an attribute you obtain, you will receive a bonus such as increased maximum life, accuracy rating and mana. 

Here is the list of classes: 

Shadow / Templar / Marauder / Ranger / Duelist / Witch / Scion

Skill Gems

Path of Exile has a unique take on skills and abilities, where no player starts with any special abilities, save for a default auto attack. Skill Gems are the abilities of Path of Exile and are placed into sockets to be used by the player. Support Gems augment existing abilities, while Aura Gems provide a buff in exchange for a portion of your maximum Mana pool. Vaal Gems provide both the base skill gem and an empowered version of it.

Economy (Orbs)

Path of Exile has an incredibly unique and engaging currency system, which is essential for any player to understand. This system revolves around various currency items, called “poe orbs”, which are used for a variety of transactions. The most common of these orbs is the Chaos Orb, which is used as a relative “dollar value” within the game. All orbs within the game have a practical usage, and can be traded with other players to purchase items. When starting out in Path of Exile, it is important to choose a build that is budget-friendly and can be used for a league starter. Certain classes are easier to level than others, such as the Marauder which has a number of Life nodes nearby. The Witch, however, is generally a much more fragile class early in the game and requires finesse to level without dying.

When playing Path of Exile, players should never use their orbs while leveling or learning the game. This is because almost all orbs carry significant value, with the exception of a few like Scrolls of Wisdom and Portal Scrolls. It is advised to store the orbs collected during the early/mid levels and only use them to purchase items when necessary. This may include low-tier items costing only 1-2 orbs each or the best leveling items costing a few Chaos Orbs. It is important to never use Chromatic Orbs to change socket color, Jeweller's Orbs/Orbs of Fusing to craft socket items, Orbs of Chance and Orbs of Alchemy for crafting, or Divine Orbs.


Vendor recipes are highly recommended for Path of Exile beginners and casual players, as it is one of the best and most effective ways of becoming rich until end-game content. Some of these recipes include Chromatic Orbs, Gemcutter’s Prism, Jeweller’s Orbs, Cartographer’s Chisel, Glassblower’s Bauble, and Orbs of Chance. The most profitable recipe is the Chaos Orb recipe which involves trading a full rare item set of items with item levels of 60 or above. This can result in up to 3 Chaos Orbs per trade.

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Character Build


When deciding on your character build, consider two main factors: damage dealing and survivability. There are six main types of characters: melee fighters, ranged fighters, spellcasters, summoners, totem builds, and traps & mines builds.

Melee fighters use one-handed or two-handed weapons to deal physical or elemental damage. They can also increase their damage output with flat physical/elemental/chaos damage to attacks, increased physical/elemental/chaos damage, increased melee damage, increased projectile damage, increased area damage, and increased attack speed.

Ranged fighters use bows and ranged attacks, focusing on the same attributes as melee fighters, excluding increased Melee damage. Spellcasters use wands, scepters, and other items to cast spells, mainly focusing on increased spell damage, increased elemental damage, increased chaos damage, added flat physical/elemental/chaos damage to spells, increased cast speed, increased area damage, increased projectile damage/speed, and increased damage over time.

Summoners use Minions to deal damage, and their build focuses on increasing minion damage, minion movement speed, and minion attack and cast speed. To amplify their minion damage, summoners need to increase the effectiveness and area of their Auras, increase the number of active Auras through Reduced Mana Reservation sources, increase the effectiveness and number of Curses, and support their minions with Offering spells and Vaal gems.

Totem builds focus on increasing Totem damage, Totem placement speed, Totem cast and attack speed, increased Trap/Mine damage, increased Trap/Mine laying speed, increased Trap/Mine duration, increased maximum number of Traps/Mines, and increased number of Traps/Mines that can be laid down with a single cast.

Lastly, all of these builds can increase their damage output with increased critical strike chance, increased critical strike multiplier, frenzy charges, and power charges. Damage is calculated by the skill gem, weapon, and flat added damage to spells and attacks. Damage conversion also takes place and damage is multiplied by all corresponding damage type bonuses.

Defensive Considerations:

The main types of builds, for building out your survivability are life builds, energy shield builds, hybrid builds, and low-life builds.

Life builds are the most common and popular type of builds in Path of Exile. They are based on a high life pool which should be increased by most items. In these builds, life can be recovered directly using life flasks, life leech, or life regeneration.

Energy shield builds are usually more suitable for advanced players. After not taking damage for a brief moment, energy shield will recover at a steady pace. This type of build is usually based on the Chaos Inoculation passive, which turns the character's life to 1, but makes them immune to chaos damage. ES can also be leeched or its recharging can be instantly invoked.

Hybrid builds are a mix of life and energy shield. These builds are often used to use certain high energy shield items, and keep the character's ES level high enough to make it more effective to spend a few extra points on energy shield nodes, rather than following the regular life route for the build.

Low-life builds are very niche types of builds. They are based on Shavronne's Wrappings or The Ivory Tower Body Armours, which makes no chaos damage bypass the energy shield. Having a high maximum life can also be beneficial to activate various bonuses that apply only to low-life characters, and to fit additional Auras. On top of these types of builds,

Another consideration is elemental and chaos resistances. Not having 75% resistance to fire, cold, and lightning is suboptimal, and chaos resistance is also important. Armour mitigates incoming physical damage, evasion grants a chance to evade enemy attacks, dodge is similar but almost non-existent in the game, avoidance is a mechanic that allows avoiding damage from hits, spell suppression chance allows players to receive only half of the damage intended, and block is a mechanic that grants a chance to prevent damage of attacks. Immunity can also be granted by certain items and abilities, and endurance charges are the defensive type of charges associated with the strength attribute.

Mapping is the end-game content in Path of Exile. It is lootable from areas level 60 and above. By using the Map Device, players can open portals to specific areas, which have a minimum level of 68. The Map Device opens six portals to each map, and the player can enter each portal only once. Areas accessed through maps contain monsters, rogue exiles, and unique bosses, and each map has its own layout, monster types and densities, and bosses. Maps can be Magic, Rare, or Unique, and each has different mods affecting the monsters or the player's character. Maps can be altered with orbs, such as upgrading low/mid-tier maps to magic rarity, and higher-tier maps to rare with Orbs of Alchemy. Before opening unique maps, players should make sure they have the skills and items necessary to complete them. Fast map clearing builds usually allow for maps to be cleared in around two minutes.

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