We are looking at the various Atlas mechanics that were buffed in patch 3.20 of Path of Exile, so all these mechanics had their support available it's on the atlas passive trade considerably increased. In this POE 3.20 Atlas guide, we dive into the support for the Expedition mechanic, look at what was changed in the 3.20 patch, which nodes to take, and which nodes to leave if you are intending to spec into Expedition on your Atlas passive tree.
Some of you are probably thinking at this point "should I bother with Expedition at all?", we think the answer in general is going to be YES. The Expedition has a lot to offer, there are really powerful crafting options, also a lot of currency that's awarded through the mechanic, and also a number of other miscellaneous rewards. You can definitely set up an atlas that doesn't work well in conjunction with Expedition. In particular, we would say that some of the nodes near the North End of the tree award you with a percentage chance to get special Maps when you kill a map boss. These ones don't synergize all that well with Expedition and that's because Expedition encounters take a while, as result, you reduce the number of maps per hour you're doing. However overall Expedition is such a strong mechanic that it is very worthy of consideration anyway, especially if you are not running any of those sorts of mechanics.
What It Costs To Take All Expedition Support in Path Of Exile 3.20 League
So the Expedition support is found on the right-hand side of the atlas passive tree and it is very very strong. This has 32 nodes allocated that are Expedition related and 21 that are travel nodes, now if you are already on the right-hand side of the passive tree, you can connect with fewer than 21 travel nodes; but if you're not on the right-hand side at all then this is probably about the minimum.
Now follow us to look at how to set up the Expedition Altas for the endgame currency farming in Path of Exile Forbidden Sanctum League:
1 - The Outer Sou-South East Cluster: Expedition Chance
Firstly starting with the Sou-South East Cluster - Hunt for Answers. Now Hunt for Answers is an interesting node in that you can path to it in two different ways. The nodes along the top - Expedition Chance grants you a 4% chance to have an expedition encounter, and the nodes - Expedition Artifact Quantity down the bottom are 4% increase quantity of artifacts dropped by monsters.
Now the 4% chance to contain an expedition encounter is the stronger choice with one exception and that Exception is when you are always using Expedition scarabs. But if you're in that situation you can skip the entire Hunt for Answers cluster, the notable does nothing for you granting a 12% chance to contain an expedition encounter but you've got 100 from your Scarab and you're not going to gain enough value out of these Expedition Artifact Quantity nodes to justify the point investment. Instead, if you're using a Scarab on every single map, then you can pass more directly, for example, you could pass through mad devotion instead and save a bunch of points down here and invest them in other mechanics.
2 - The 'Training Wheels' Cluster - Ancient Decay
The next cluster is the inner South East cluster - Ancient Decay. Now, this is an interesting node in that we are going to generally recommend players skip this entirely, however, there is an Exception and that Exception is for players who are just getting started in the league. If you're just getting started in the league, Expedition encounters are quite a bit harder than the other monster encounters you'll be fighting in maps, as a result having them spawn with 20% of their life missing is a meaningful bonus, and additionally, the slower propagation of Expedition Detonation Chains is actually beneficial here. This is actively detrimental if your character is really powerful because it's going to mean it's longer than you're waiting until monsters are available to be killed.
However, if your character is struggling a bit with Expeditions, this gives you a bit of breathing time. For that reason, we would recommend that you only spec the Ancient Decay cluster if you are trying to push to a higher tier before you feel like you're ready for it. If you're in that situation consider taking H into k for now but whatever the case you want to Aspire to get rid of this cluster. If you are allocating it and once you get rid of this, you're going to be able to save at least one travel Point to Adjacent Map Drop Chance and potentially more depending on whether or not you decide you're going to be taking Hunt For Answers as well or not.
3 - The Very Good Centre East Wheel - Remnants
Next, however we get to one of the clusters that makes Expedition as good as it is, this is the big Expedition wheel and this thing is fantastic. So here we have Ancient Writings. Expeditions in your maps contain two additional remnants, the first thing that we'll point out on this now. There are several things that come together to make a successful Expedition:
3.1 - Popping off remnants: Remnants are the things that modify the rules of the expedition in some way. For example, a Remnant might have the mods monsters are immune to Coal damage as a difficulty mod, and then as a beneficial mod it might have monsters in the Expedition have 40% increased quantity of items dropped. That's a reasonable Remnant unless you're playing a cold build in which case it's one you must avoid at all costs. Now having more of these present in your Expedition just makes the Expedition better, so you definitely want to take this node even though sometimes it's going to constrain you because you will not be able to do every Remnant on every single build that you make. So you're just going to have to be aware that some individual remnants are bad for you, but having more of them is still beneficial.
3.2 - And Remnants in your Maps have a 30% chance to have an additional suffix modifier - suffix modifiers are what provide the rewards from the remnants so this is a huge upside. This means that in Maps where you've got only 5 remnants you'll have a reasonable chance of getting seven upsides, if you've got 10 remnants then you'll have 13 upsides to choose between. You may not be able to take them all, but you'll be able to pick and choose the best ones and that makes Ancient Writings an absolute premium node.
3.3 - Distinguished Demolitionist though is the extraordinary node, this is the one that turns Expedition from a good mechanic into an extraordinary one. 35% increase the explosive radius means you've just got a lot more flexibility to avoid those bad remnants we're talking about and also to pick up all the good ones, but the other thing you're concerned about is hitting as many runic monsters as you can. There any monsters are the skulls that are impaled on spikes and these become the monsters that can drop Expedition logbooks, remember those because we're going to come back to them later log books are a big source of your wealth when you're running an Expedition Atlas and as a result having more flexibility to hit more of these skulls.
3.4 - But then also having just one more explosive is a huge deal as well, Distinguished Demolitionist is a must take and this is when your Expedition tree will feel like it's coming together. Also, don't knock the small nodes, Explosive Placement Distance and Vendor Reroll Currency Chance here to get 20% increase in the explosive placement range in your Maps is a huge mod, and 3% increased quantity of vendor of fresh currencies drop by monsters in your Maps is also good, and then you've got 8% chance to have an Expedition encounter (Expedition Chance) as well rounding things out.
Now you can definitely skip these top two nodes if you are running a Scarab on every map. For the same reason you would skip the cluster down in the Southeast, but you definitely want the two major nodes and everything in between them via the longer path.
4 - The Good New Cluster - Player Agency Over NPC Support (Dannig)
Next, we get to the cluster that was added in 320 and this one is a bit of a doozy, a few travel points to get up to it, but once you get there you will definitely be paid off.
4.1 - Firstly you've got a little bit of Expedition Chance, Artifact Quantity, and Vendor Re-roll Currency Chance, all good nodes are worth taking.
4.2 - But then you have the big ones - A Noble Quest, Expeditions in your maps have 65% increased chance to be led by Danning. And the flexible ones scratching up the ground 90% increased chance to be led by Tujen and Rather Not 90% chance to be led by Rog. now note that these compete with each other and also with Gwennen. Winning is objectively the worst now, this was not always the case for a period it was probably wrong that was the weakest of them but that's definitely been changed and Gwennen is now the weakest for that reason. Lucky Guess is not just a weak node, it is an actively detrimental node you never want to take this because it takes away the chances of getting a Tujen encounter getting a Danning encounter, and getting a Rog encounter and gives you essentially nothing in return, it gives you something objectively worse than those in return. So you never want to take Lucky Guess.
4.3 - However Scratchin' up the Ground and Rather Not are ones that you may wish to consider, and basically what it comes down to is how familiar are you with Rod crafting. If you're very familiar with Rod crafting, you should take Rather Not and you should Scratchin' up the Ground; if you are not very familiar with Rob crafting then it is usually better to take Scratchin' up the Ground and to skip Rather Not. Note that there is attention to these they will be competing with each other.
4.4 - Additionally, you always take A Noble Quest because no matter what your strategy is with Expedition vendors, you will always prefer a Danning encounter to any of the others, so you always take A Noble Quest no matter what you're doing then depending upon your own familiarity with the mechanics, you pick one of Scratchin' up the Ground and Rather Not. And even though Scratchin' up the Ground costs three points, the two points that you're passing through to travel to it are actually not bad ones so you're good with that.
5 - Amazing Logbook Drop Rate Cluster
Next, we have the final cluster which is Buried Knowledge and this one is phenomenal. Logbooks are phenomenal and this is where you get them, not only are you getting 50% increased quantity of expedition logbooks being dropped but you're also getting 20% increased number of running back monster markers. These nodes effectively are multiplicative and so this ends up being about an 80% increase in the number of logbooks that you get.
5.1 - Logbooks are one of the main reasons you want to run an expedition setup, if you're familiar with running them yourself you'll make a lot of currency from them, and if you're not familiar with running them yourself there's a big market to sell them to other players there is always demand for logbooks, and as a result, you will definitely do very well out of running Buried Knowledge.
5.2 - Additionally, you've got two choices for pathing here, you can pass through the chance to contain an Expedition encounter, again this is the superior choice if you are not using scarabs on every map. But if you are using a Scarab on every map take 4% increase the number of artifacts dropped by monsters.
6 - General Expedition Vendor Tips
Anyways that is it, for Expedition the support is pretty simple but the mechanic is very powerful, once you do spec into it what you're going to want to do is get some experience playing around with the vendors that you've got access to.
Tujen will give you flat currency in small amounts but very reliable small amounts that add up very quickly, and Rog will give you access to extraordinarily potent gear. That is very much trade League focused and we think that Rog in general performs better in trade than he does in SSF. In SSF, you will sometimes create a magnificent item for a build you have no intention of playing, and that one can feel like it goes to waste in trade if you do make something that's magnificent for a build, that even one that's quite off meta you can usually just go and sell that and get something that's a basic commodity like Divine orbs for it, and that will end up helping you with your progression whereas in SSF.
7 - Dannig Is So Great
Tujen will give you access to a lot of stuff and Danning is just phenomenal, the reason Danning is so good is that his artifacts can be substituted for whichever artifacts you need the most at the moment. So if you need more of Tujen's small artifacts, then you can turn in Danning small artifacts and get Tujen ones, and potentially even get them at a favorable exchange rate more favorable than one-to-one. Additionally don't sometimes sell logbooks and he very frequently will sell the other vendors' refresh POE currency as well.
8 - Expedition Scarabs Are Great To Use
One thing that's important to keep in mind with Expedition is that the scarabs for it are phenomenal and they really do scale up a lot as you up their tiers.
Rusted Expedition Scarabs will force an expedition encounter onto your map.
Polished Expedition Scarabs will do that but they'll also give you 25% increased runic monsters plus one explosive, this is a big deal - this makes this Scarab a lot better than the tier below.
The gaps from Polished to Gilded and then from Gilded to Winged are significant, but they're not as big as the jump that goes from Rusted up to Polished. For that reason, we would suggest that you run a Polished Scarab or better when you're running red maps and that you consider running a Rusted Scarab, even when you're running lower-tier Maps as long as you're going to be able to clear the Expedition because you will get paid off for it, especially with how cheap scarabs are this league and how plentiful they are.
9 - Changing Your Tree For Scarabs
As a result, we would definitely suggest that you take seriously the option of heavily using scarabs, if you are going to do that then you're going to want to pass out through mad devotion in instead of this Southeast cluster or alternately the other nodes you want to take on your Atlas have got nothing to do with Expedition might point you in other directions.
10 - Should You Use Grand Design and/or Wandering Path?
Finally, let's turn to the question of the nodes that change your entire passive tree - Grand Design, small Atlas passive skills grant nothing you get a bunch of extra packs size. This is okay without being good on an expedition passive tree.
Now an expedition tree in conjunction with scarabs starts to feel a little bit better. This is a reasonable option but it's something where you only want to do this, if the rest of your tree is already begging for you to use ground design, you don't want to just use Grand Design because you're already doing Expedition with scarabs, you really want the rest of your tree to already be pushing you in that direction.
As for the Wandering Path, just skip it, the small nodes are okay for Expedition but they're nothing extraordinary and there's nothing as good as Distinguished Demolitionist plus one explosive or Ancient Writings plus two remnants and 30% chance for them to have an extra suffix or Buried Knowledge is 50% increased quantity of expedition logbooks and 20% increased number of running monster markers. All of these are phenomenal, and you're locking yourself out of them with Wandering Path and also locking yourself out of the amazing Noble Quest. And in exchange, you're doubling the effect of those small Atlas passive skills, but that's just not good enough to justify what you're giving up.
So that's Expedition, don't take the cluster for Ancient Decay, don't take the cluster for Hunt For Answers if you are using a Scarab on every map but do take it otherwise, and definitely whatever you do take the big wheel and take the central circle because these are fantastic. Enjoy Expedition it's a very lucrative mechanic and something that will help you if your goal is to get yourself a lot of currency in a trade League.
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