War for the Atlas and the Abyss League Preview
Path of Exile patch 3.1
War for the Atlas is the seventh major Path of Exile expansion. It will launch on December 8th, 2017, and alongside with it, the Abyss League will be introduced.
What’s new in War for the Atlas?
War for the Atlas will introduce a new main antagonist to Path of Exile - the Elder. The Elder consumes the Shaper’s creations becoming more and more powerful. We can only assume, that this means, with every high tier maps cleared, the higher the chance of the Elder dropping valuable and rare loot.
War for the Atlas also introduces 32 new maps, with entirely new themes and bosses.
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A new type of items will be also introduced in Patch 3.1. These are the Shaped and Elder rare items. These items can be crafted with completely new attributes, that are normally reserved for unique items. This can include:
- Additional spell dodge chance
- Increased intelligence
- Increased projectile damage
- Increased effect of Chill
- Added elemental damage to spells on armor parts
- Making the socketed gems become supported by indicated gems
- Increased the level of socketed gems
- Placing additional mine
- Increasing Area of effect
Hypothetically this may also include:
- Increased block chance
- Increased Strength/Dexterity
- Increased Spell damage/melee damage on armor parts
- Increased effects of Freeze/Shock/Stun/Curse/Poison
- Added physical/elemental damage to attacks on armor parts
- Grating additional arrow or increasing number of projectiles
- Increasing skill duration
- Increasing casting speed
Shaped and Elder items have a unique background behind their icon, which makes it rather easy to identify them. We can only assume most(if not all) of the Shaped and Elder items will be extremely valuable.
Patch 3.1 will also introduce 10 new spell gems, which include 4 new active spell gems and 6 new support gems. Only 8 of them have been revealed so far, and this are as follows:
|Unearth – Projectile based spell, which pierces enemies and creates a Bone Archer’s at the target location
Bodyswap – a new movement aoe spell, which teleports the player to a targeted corpse. It causes two explosions, at both the original and target location
Volatile Dead – causes corpses to explode at the target location, and creates an orb of fire, that flies towards enemies dealing aoe fire spell damage. The orb’s damage depends on the maximum life of corpses caught in the initial explosion
Cremation – a spell with very similar mechanics to the Volatile Dead spell. However, instead of creating the orb, it creates volcanic geysers at target location that shoot projectiles at nearby enemies. It is a duration-based spell
Storm Barrier Support – a support gem that grants a chance to gain a power charge when channeling the supported spells. It also reduces physical and lightning damage taken when channeling the supported skill
Volley Support – increases the number of projectiles fired by the supported skills by 2, and adds 2 additional projectiles fired from both sides of the player (left and right). Decreases projectile damage
Spell Cascade Support – causes the supported AoE spells to have reduced area of effect and damage but also makes them have effect in areas both before and after the targeted location
|Ancestral Call Support - a support gem affecting single target melee skills. It reduced their damage but makes it hit two additional targets
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Unique Items could not have been left out in Patch 3.1 either.
||Arborix - quite interesting bow. Its DPS, however, might be too low to compete with other popular bow options in the end-game tier
Adds 64 to 206 Physical Damage
99% increased Evasion Rating
2 additional Arrows
Every 16 seconds you gain Iron Reflexes for 8 seconds
30% more Bow Damage at Close Range while you have Iron Reflexes
30% increased Attack, Cast and Movement Speed while you do not have Iron Reflexes
You have Far Shot while you do not have Iron Reflexes
||Cane of Unravelling - a good end-game Chaos Spell Damage Staff, that might be a base item for at least a couple great builds. It provides fantastic Chaos Damage buffs and great power charge generation mechanics.
18% Chance to Block
+2 to Level of Socketed Chaos Gems
63% increased Chaos Damage
2% increased Cast Speed per Power Charge
Gain a Power Charge after spending a total of 200 Mana
2 Mana Regenerated per Second per Power Charge
||Giantsbane - great physical damage leveling gloves. They grant amazing bonuses early on, and we might see them on a lot of low/mid level ranged/physical characters
Adds 4 to 12 Physical Damage to Attacks
+30 to Strength
90% increased Armour
||Invictus Solaris - a quite powerful defensive shield. It grants decent life and elemental resistance bonuses on top of an entirely new buff — the Fire Aegis which mitigates a portion of fire damage dealt to the player before it diminishes.
3% reduced Movement Speed (Hidden)
+12% to all Elemental Resistances
+2 to Level of Socketed Gems
Triggers level 20 Fire Aegis when Equipped
210% increased Armour and Energy Shield
+72 to maximum Life
Cannot be Ignited
||Kalisa's Grace - quite interesting pair of caster gloves. They will provide a cheap (most likely) 5-link setup
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level 18 Faster Casting
+21 to Intelligence
+67 to maximum Energy Shield
+65 to maximum Life
Gain +2% to Critical Strike Chance for 2 seconds when you Spend a total of 800 Mana
||Ralakesh's Impatience - this pair of boots grant amazing charge generation mechanics. They might be extremely powerful for certain builds. We expect to see some interesting CwC (Cast when Channeling) builds based on this boots. CwC Discharge maybe, with the Malachai's Mark equipped in the gloves slot maybe?
+19% to Cold Resistance
+18% to Chaos Resistance
20% increased Movement Speed
Gain a Frenzy, Endurance, or Power Charge once per second while you are Stationary
Lose all Frenzy, Endurance, and Power Charges when you Move
||Stormcharger - not bad leveling boots. They will grant significant damage boost for lightning builds early on
20% increased Movement Speed
50% increased Shock Duration on Enemies
25% of Physical Damage Converted to Lightning Damage
24% increased Effect of Shock
||The Hungry Loop - this is one of the most interesting unique items introduced in patch 3.1. Hungry Loop will consume socketed support gems when they reach level 20 and gain the gem's powers as its' own. The gem is consumed while the player upgrades the gem from level 19 to 20 while socketed in the ring, and a maximum of 4 support gems can be consumed this way. This gives the Hungry Loop a complete new type of power, and will allow it to provide the player a 5-link setup in the ring slot (at the cost of all the other stats that a ring usually provides)
Consumes Socketed Support Gems when they reach Maximum Level
Can Consume 4 Support Gems
Has not Consumed any Gems
||Vix Lunaris - a "cold" equivalent to previously mentioned Invictus Solaris Shield.
3% reduced Movement Speed (Hidden)
+2 to Level of Socketed Gems
Triggers level 20 Cold Aegis when equipped
229% increased Armour and Evasion
+61 to maximum Life
Cannot be Frozen
||White Wind - a fairly powerful cold DPS dagger. It also grants amazing bonuses while the player is not wearing an off-hand item, which will most likely be played this way
30% increased Global Critical Strike Chance
Adds 196 to 310 Cold Damage
14% increased Attack Speed
+324 to Evasion Rating
20% chance to Dodge Attacks while your Off Hand is empty
100% increased Cold Damage while your Off Hand is empty
||Wraithlord - a helmet slot items that turn your spectres into tanks. Oddly enough Spectres were always treaded as a full DPS minion spell, but who knows how patch 3.1 changes will affect that
+2 to Level of Socketed Minion Gems
150% increased Energy Shield
Minions Regenerate 1% Life per second
+1000 to Spectre maximum Life
||Yoke of Suffering - well-rounded leveling amulet. Grants triple resistances, additional attributes, and damage
+(10-16) to all Attributes
+16% to Fire Resistance
+12% to Cold Resistance
+22% to Lightning Resistance
30% reduced Duration of Ailments on Enemies
10% chance to Shock
Enemies take 5% increased Damage for each type of Ailment you have inflicted on them
Your Elemental Damage can Shock
||The Long Winter - a Glacial Cascade's threshold jewel. Patch 3.1 brings a couple of new items that boost this skill, and we will be certainly seeing it a lot of characters in the Abyss League
15% increased Cold Damage
With 40 Intelligence in Radius, Glacial Cascade has an additional Burst
With 40 Intelligence in Radius, 20% of Glacial Cascade Physical Damage Converted to Cold Damage
||Pillars of Arun - this looks like a very interesting unique map that provides a completely new experience to PoE players. We can just assume that players will be required to equip at least one of movement spells including Flame Dash, Lightning Warp and Blink Arrow
Monsters have 50% chance to Avoid Elemental Ailments
Monsters have a 50% chance to avoid Bleeding, Poison, and being Blinded
22% increased Monster Movement Speed
22% increased Monster Attack Speed
20% increased Monster Cast Speed
76% increased Experience gain
Area contains unbridged gaps to cross
Players have 200% increased Cooldown Recovery Speed for Movement Skills
||The Twilight Temple - a level 1 unique map, that will house various types of monsters. We presume this might be the place to go when looking for monsters suitable for Spectres summoning
Area has increased monster variety
Area is inhabited by Lunaris fanatics
Area is inhabited by Solaris fanatics
Players are Cursed with Flammability
Players are Cursed with Frostbite
War for the Atlas also introduced at least 6 new sets of Divination Cards. The ones that have been revealed so far are:
New boss fight - Shakari in Act 9
War for the Atlas will also bring a new interesting encounter in Act 9. This is the scropion-themed monster - Shakari. It looks like at least one Poison immunity flask will be necessary to face her :) Below you can find the official gameplay video of the fight.
Abyss Challenge League
In the Abyss Challenge league, as usual, PoE players will be able to choose one of the available modes: Softcore, Hardcore or Solo Self-found (both SC and HC variations). The Abyss League introduces a new main antagonist to the world of Wraeclast - the Elder. The Elder is competing with the Shaper over the control of the Atlas. This introduces a lot of new options to how you can build your atlas, and this means the War for the Atlas is heavily end-game oriented - which a lot of players were waiting for.
Players will be able to find Abyssal Depths while playing Path of Exile, which are packed with powerful monsters. Some high leveldps Abyssal Depths might be occupied by a very powerful Lich boss who can drop the Abyss League specific unique items.
All of the Abyss monsters and chests (that spawn after sealing the Abyssal cracks) can drop Abyss Jewels. Abyss Jewels like normal jewels can be socketed in the Passive Skill tree and grant its' bonuses to the player. Unlike regular jewels, Abyss Jewels carry completely new affixes, which are commonly seen on other slot items - including increased maximum life, added physical damage to attacks. Abyss Jewels can also be sockted into items, that have the Abyssal sockets in them. Also, a new type of belt is going to be introduced in the Abyss League. This is the Stygian Vise belt, which can carry Abyssal sockets aswell.
Sadly, not much was revealed about upcoming Abyss League's Unique items. We have seen just 1 teaser, that presented a quite interesting pair of unique boots.
||Bubonic Trail - quite interesting pair of boots. They grant amazing DPS bonus, as well as a completely new movement spell, that triggers when you equip them. We can just assume that your movement will be faster, and most likely some death-related theme. This could even possibly cause the player to shed corpses when moving - which would be extremely interesting. This boots also provide 1 Abyssal socket
Has 1 Abyssal Socket
Triggers level 20 Death Walk when Equipped
4% increased maximum Life
30% increased Movement Speed
10% increased Damage for each type of Abyssal Jewel affecting you
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Of course, Odealo.com will support the Abyss League, and we expect Cheap PoE orbs on both the Softcore and Hardcore modes to be available for sale within 24hours of the League launch - stay tuned!
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Pictures used in this article are the intellectual property of Grinding Gear Games.