• Understanding the Value of Currency

    Even though the currency system in Path of Exile is brilliantly done it can be quite confusing for new players. The game doesn’t follow the traditional “gold” system, instead players are encouraged and required to trade one currency for another with either vendors or other players depending on their needs.

    Certain currency items are more or less difficult to obtain thus the different values and trading ratios are very important to understand. Once you remember all the ratios and start trading with other players it’s almost like a minigame within PoE in which you barter and haggle with others in order to get currency items you need at the best possible price.

    There’s about 20 different currency items (frequently referred to as Orbs) in Path of Exile. I’ll list all of them below along with a short explanation of what they are used for. They are listed (more or less) by rarity, so the first ones listed are very common and easy to obtain while the bottom ones are very expensive and less likely to drop.

    Armourer’s Scrap

    Armourer's Scraps

    Scraps drop frequently and are very inexpensive, up to the point where finding a buyer for these is even hard. Don’t fret though as you should still always pick them up and use them for Chaos Orb recipe on high level items. Using Armorer’s Scraps also increases your chance to 5 or 6 link gem sockets on an item so if you decide to go for it having a few hundred Armorer’s Scraps might save you more valuable currency later on. You can trade Scraps for Whetstones at vendors.

    Blacksmith’s Whetstone

    Blacksmith's Whetstone

    Same as Armorer’s Scraps, Whetstones are used to improve an item’s quality up to 20% and are easy to obtain. They drop often from mobs and aren’t used in high amounts. Nevertheless you should still pick them up whenever you can since like everything else in Path of Exile it has its value. You can only trade them for Armourer’s Scraps at vendors.

    Glassblower’s Bauble

    Glassblower's Bauble

    Glassblower’s Baubles are used to improve quality of flasks and typically players don’t need a large amount of them. You’ll probably use 100-200 of these at most throughout the game so once you have the best (Hallowed or Sanctified) flasks you won’t need these. They can’t be traded for anything of better value at vendors and I have yet to see a player buying Baubles.

    Orb of Transmutation

    Orb of Transmutation

    Orb of Transmutation transforms a white (common) item into a blue (magic) one. Very common and mostly used on flasks, lower level maps (66-68) and strongboxes. Usually when I get over 100 of these I just trade them at vendor for Orbs of Augmentation or more often Scrolls of Wisdom.

    Orb of Augmentation

    Orb of Augmentation

    Adds an additional stat to a magic item. Some magic items have only one stat and an Augmentation Orb is used to add an affix to them. Very easy to obtain in larger quantities and best traded at vendor for Alteration.

    Chromatic Orb

    Chromatic Orb

    Changes gem socket colors on an item. Easy to come by and you will need a lot of them (as in hundreds). I recommend keeping at least 150 of them at all times and trade the surplus for other orbs.

    Orb of Alteration

    Orb of Alteration

    Replaces current with new random stats on a magic (blue) item. It’s unlikely you will need many of these unless you’re really into crafting items, which you won’t be until very late endgame. I prefer to simply trade them to vendors for more valuable orbs. They are extremely easy to come by.

    Jeweller’s Orb

    Jeweller's Orb

    Fairly easy to get, Jeweller’s Orbs are used to change the number of sockets on an item. When you get a better piece of gear you’ll surely want to add more sockets to it so you might want to have at least 100 spare Jeweller’s Orbs to spend. If you have extra trade them with vendors for Orb of Fusing.

    Orb of Chance

    Orb of Chance

    This currency orb transforms a white item with no stats into a magic (blue), rare (yellow) or even unique item. Obviously the chances of getting a unique item are slim but it’s well worth using on certain endgame gear (especially Glorious Plates and Siege Axes, both of which can turn into extremely expensive gear). You can just hoard these, chances are you’ll be using all of them. If you don’t want to test your luck, you can vendor them for Orbs of Scouring and Orbs of Regret for fairly decent rates.

    Cartographer’s Chisel

    Cartographer's Chisel

    Chisels are used to improve the quantity and rarity of item drops on endgame maps. Even though you won’t be seeing Chisels drop in lower levels they are fairly common but always in high demand. Once you get higher level maps (70+) you will definitely want to improve them with Chisels so keep a few around; you can exchange the rest for Chaos Orbs or some other currency which will probably be more important to you earlier.

     Orb of Fusing

    Orb of Fusing

    A mid-value orb used to link sockets on an item. They are high in demand and you should always keep 50-80 of them in your stash to be able to link your own items if necessary. To get 5 linked sockets on a piece of gear you’ll need about 150 Fusings and an average of 800 for 6 links (rough estimate, can vary significantly) so players often purchase these in large quantities which makes them extremely easy to trade.

    Orb of Alchemy

    Orb of Alchemy

    I tend to use all my Alchemy Orbs (and even buy some occasionally) to turn common (white) high level rings, amulets and belts into rare items. Those pieces of equipment typically don’t drop often and are hard to get sometimes so it’s best to simply pick up white ones with high rolls and turn them into rares, hoping for a decent item. If I don’t get anything good I just use them for Chaos Orb recipe at vendor. Most common use though is on maps.

    Orb of Scouring

    Orb of Scouring

    This orb removes all stats from a magic or rare item. It’s useful for crafting or rolling maps, but can be somewhat harder to trade with other players. I usually turn them into Orb of Regret at vendor (2:1), since Regrets are always easier to sell.

    Blessed Orb

    Blessed Orb

    Blessed Orbs aren’t used very often but they can be very useful on high quality items. In most cases you’ll just trade them for Chaos Orbs. They are used to change the values of implicit (health on Coral rings, or resistances on Prismatic, etc.) stats on a particular item. Especially useful when rolling higher value Unique items.

    Chaos Orb

    Chaos Orb

    Another mid-value orb and sort of considered the main currency of the game. They are somewhat easy to obtain later on in the game but also very quick to spend. Always in high demand, and any other currency item can always be traded for Chaos Orbs.

    Chaos Orbs often serve as sort of an anchor for trading, meaning most other currencies and their exchange ratios are just translated into Chaos Orbs.

    Vaal Orb

    Vaal Orb

     Frequent drop with same drop rate as Chaos, Vaal is used to modify items randomly. It can turn unique items into rare ones, break socket links or even add Prismatic (white) sockets. Important to note that once you use a Vaal Orb on an item you can’t use any other currency on it, that includes Fusings, Jewellers, Eternals and even Whetstones and Scraps.

    Orb of Regret

    Orb of Regret

    There’s always someone who wants to re-spec their passive skill tree and allocate a point or a few differently, thus Orbs of Regret are highly valued. Unless you really messed up your skill tree build you won’t need dozens of them (plus you get about 15 free respec points from quests), but do try and keep about 5-10 of them in your stash. You might need to allocate a point into resist after changing your gear or figure out a shorter path to a certain keystone passive after awhile so having a few extra Regrets doesn’t hurt.

    Regal Orb

    Regal Orb

    Regal Orbs are used for crafting, more specifically turning a magic item into a rare one. Do note that when using a Regal your now rare item will get one additional stat and will retain the stats from the blue item, but unless you have plenty of Exalted Orbs to spend to craft further don’t even bother with this. In a majority of cases you should just trade your Regal Orbs for Chaos. Definitely not recommended using on low level gear while you’re leveling.
    Gemcutter’s PrismGemcutter's Prism High value orb and pretty darn rare as a monster drop, Gemcutter’s Prism (GCP) is used to improve the quality of a gem. Never use these on gems with no quality whatsoever, in fact make sure your skill gem has at least 15% quality before you try and improve it. Even then the Prism should only be used if you’re filthy rich and with decent gear already. Before you decide to spend these rare and valuable orbs make sure you know exactly what you’re getting by improving a gem (auras for example only add fairly useless range). Also most useful 20% (max) quality gems cost 1 Exalted Orb which trades for about 10 Gemcutter’s Prisms, thus the aforementioned 15%. Remember, there’s also a recipe for quality gems!

    Divine Orb

    Divine Orb

    Another high value orb used for crafting and as such unlikely an average player will be needing it early in the game. Feel free to sell it for GCP or Chaos. Divine Orbs are used to reroll explicit (as opposed to implicit; look under Blessed Orb above) item stats to random values, most commonly used on unique items: if you get a low-roll but still valuable unique item you can use a Divine and hope for better stats. High or perfectly rolled uniques are typically more expensive than those with average stat rolls so Divine Orbs can add quite a bit of value to them.

    Exalted Orb

    Exalted Orb

    Extremely rare to find and always in demand. If you ever see this baby drop you better click like mad and hope the servers don’t crash. It’s used for adding additional mods (stats) to a rare item, something you should probably never do unless you have dozens or even hundreds of Exalteds to spend. You will have absolutely no trouble trading them for any other orb in the game. Some of the best and most expensive items in the game cost dozens and even hundreds of Exalted Orbs so don’t waste them ever, especially on low level items!

     Eternal Orb

    Eternal Orb

    Eternal Orbs are used to “remember” stats, socket number and colors on a single item and later restore them if your crafting attempts don’t pan off. For example if you had a great 5-linked chest and want to try and 6-link it, you can use an Eternal Orb before you start and later on easily restore 5-links (which are hard to get as well). Eternals are expensive and very rare so don’t use them unless you really know what you’re doing!

    Mirror of Kalandra

    Mirror of Kalandra

    Extremely expensive and almost impossible to find, the Mirror makes an exact duplicate of an existing non-unique item. It’s pretty much worth as much as the most expensive item in game is, meaning it sells for over 100 Exalted Orbs in Standard league and if you get one you’re encouraged to donate it to me.

    Two other notable items are Scrolls of Wisdom and Portal Scrolls. You’ll be getting tons of these are in majority of cases they are next to useless, however some players are lazy to constantly pick them up so I’ve managed to sell 100 Scrolls of Wisdom for 1 Chaos Orb several times so far. If you don’t mind picking them up you might get lucky and sell them.

    Trading Ratios

    As I mentioned already everything in Path of Exile has a certain value. The prices of orbs are determined by the frequency of their drops, vendor exchange prices and recipes, and player demand (probably in that order). If a vendor exchanges 4 Jeweller’s Orbs for 1 Orb of Fusing obviously the players exchange them in the same ratio; on the other hand if for some weird reason Jeweller’s Orbs started dropping in extreme amounts from now on chances are the prices would change.

    The economy in PoE is basically based on supply and demand, therefore knowing the exact prices and exchange ratios of orbs is extremely important unless you want to throw away “money” for no reason.

    Vendor exchange ratios

    I briefly wrote on this topic in another post but I’ll repeat some of the key points here. Vendors can exchange basic currencies for you so for most low-value Orbs you don’t have to bother finding players to trade with. Here’s what vendors have to offer:

    Sell: You get: Note
    Jeweller’s Orb x3 Chromatic x1 Not worth it unless you desperately need one or two Chromatics.
    Augmentation Orb x4 Alteration x1 Worth it when you end up with tons of Augmentations after awhile.
    Alteration Orb x2 Jeweller’s Orb x1 Same value.
    Orb of Fusing x1 Orb of Chance x1 Not worth it as 1 Fusing is worth 4 Chance Orbs.
    Jeweller’s Orb x4 Orb of Fusing x1 Market value.
    Orb of Regret x1 Orb of Alchemy x1 Not worth it (2.5 Alchemy = 1 Regret in player trades).
    Orb of Chance x4 Orb of Scouring x1 Market value.
    Orb of Scouring x2 Orb of Regret x1 Market value.

    The basic system I use for getting rid of low value orbs is: Transmutation > Augmentation > Alteration > Jeweller’s > Fusing. Fusings are also easiest to trade with other players and the ratios are pretty standard (2 Fusings for 1 Chaos at the time of writing this). You can also vendor Transmutations for Scrolls of Wisdom, and then sell Scrolls to players.

    Player exchange ratios

    You can view currency exchange ratios here, I keep it updated constantly and it’s usually way more accurate than other resources. It’s based on “Standard” league and the prices are a bit different in other leagues such as Hardcore, so take that into account. Some currencies can’t be “downgraded” via vendors which also means that players may be selling them at a slight loss.

    A small sidenote: prices often fluctuate slightly up to 15%. It’s especially important to consider that high value Orbs (especially Exalted) are often sold for a bit more than they’re usually worth (although technically they’re worth exactly as much as someone is willing to pay for them). You could spend days on end just trading one currency for another in Path of Exile and make a profit off of that.

    Conclusion

    The currency system isn’t overly complex and you’ll get the hang of it pretty fast. Just make sure you remember exactly how much an Orb is worth and what’s the best way to trade it. Take a screenshot of currency exchange values and set it as your desktop wallpaper if necessary (but remember, values and rates constantly change!).

    And if you ever have any questions you can always simply ask me in the comments below.

  • Currency Exchange Ratios

    No troll voting, no RMT ads. These are current average currency exchange rates in Path of Exile (Standard league).

      Chromatic Orb Orb of Alteration Jeweller's Orb Orb of Chance Cartographer's Chisel Orb of Fusing Orb of Alchemy Orb of Scouring Blessed Orb Chaos Orb Vaal Orb Orb of Regret Regal Orb Gemcutter's Prism Divine Orb Exalted Orb Eternal Orb
    Chaos Orb 1:9.6 1:13 1:6.5 1:4.7 1:1.8 1:1.7 1:2.5 1:1.2 1:1.7   2.4:1 1.7:1 1.8:1 3:1 22:1 24:1 67:1
    Exalted Orb 1:230 1:310 1:155 1:112 1:42 1:40 1:60 1:28 1:40 1:24  1:10 1:14 1:13 1:8 1:1.1   2.8:1

    View Full Currency Table »

  • Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Playing Path of Exile

    Like every other game Path of Exile has its intricacies, perhaps even more than other games in fact. Even after months of playing the game and leveling several characters and classes there’s still a ton of stuff I need to learn. I still remember how some “basics” were extremely confusing for me when I started playing PoE so I decided to make a list of things I think new players might find useful to know. It’s by no means a comprehensive list but I still hope you find it helpful.

    1. Follow a skill tree build

    The first thing you should do when you make your first character (or preferably just before) is to find a good skill tree build and follow it. I know we all want more damage but in Path of Exile building a glass-cannon character simply doesn’t work in endgame. A majority of your points usually need to be in defensive talents, because simply put a dead character isn’t dealing any damage.

    If you’re confused with picking a class you can take this as a basis:

    • If you want to play a ranged caster mage pick a Witch
    • If you want a ranged archer pick a Marauder or Duelist
    • If you want a tank pick a Marauder or Templar
    • If you want melee DPS pick a Marauder, Templar or Duelist
    • If you want a melee caster pick a Shadow
    • If you want a dual-wielding melee beast pick a Duelist

    Also worth noting is that having good weapons will increase your DPS more than having a majority of damaging skill points in your passive tree, so once again, focus on building defense via the skill tree. Additionally having 3 or more support gems linked to your main damaging ability will immensely increase your DPS.

    2. Don’t throw away skill gems with +Quality

    They are valuable and can be traded to other players, or even vendors in bulk for very valuable currency items called Gemcutter’s Prism. Most gems with less than +12% quality are best to simply sell to vendors (in bulk for Prism, not single!). The recipe works the same way as other +quality items: sell gems with a combined quality of 40% and you’ll get a Prism. Anything over 12% quality should be either used by you or traded to other players.

    3. Don’t spend currency on low-level items

    And by low-level I mean anything below 60. I know it’s tempting to turn those “useless” white items into rare (yellow) ones when you’re level 30 or 40 but you will out-level them very quickly. Orbs of Alchemy and Chaos Orbs are much better used for high-end items so save them, you will need every single one.

    Blacksmith’s Whetstone and Armorer’s Scraps on the other hand are fairly easy to come by and if you find a decent piece of gear you will use for awhile feel free to improve its stats, but don’t go overboard. Just remember you’ll replace those items pretty quickly.

    4. If you don’t know the value of an item, don’t trade it

    I still don’t know the value of a lot of items and sometimes it’s hard to determine it, but if you think something is really good don’t just sell it for an Alchemy Orb. A good example is the aforementioned +Quality gems: high-level characters often prey on lowbies in Normal difficulty and try to buy out their gems for Alchemy Orbs. If a gem is 6% quality or less you can trade it away for an Alchemy Orb, but anything above that is more valuable (look above at tip #2).

    Once you hit the endgame knowing the value of items becomes even more important. Check out some of the trading sites like poe.xyz.is or poexplorer.com and search for an item with similar stats to yours to get an idea of how much it could be worth.

    5. Pick up all orbs

    I must admit I haven’t made this mistake myself (I still pick up most Wisdom scrolls even though they are pretty much useless), but don’t skip picking up any orbs that drop for you. All of them can be traded for higher valued currency items and once you figure out what their value is you’ll start probably need as many as you can get your hands on. In fact even Wisdom Scrolls can be traded, but if you’re building a high MF character you might even need to buy them off of other players.

    Even common currency items such as Orbs of Alteration and Chromatic Orbs are worth picking up. Once you get your hands on a 6-linked item you might end up spending hundreds of Chromatic Orbs to get the socket colors you want. Even lower-value orbs like Chance can be used much more efficiently at endgame so don’t skip picking them up.

    Another thing I’d like to say is that you should never use Divine or Exalted orbs before endgame. They are extremely valuable and hard to come by and best used on the highest quality gear, or even traded for decent items.

    6. Pick up items with linked 3-color sockets

    If you see an item drop that has 3 LINKED gem sockets of different colors pick it up and sell it to a vendor for a Chromatic Orb. Even though Chromatics are fairly easy to come by chances are you will need a lot of them, and of course you can trade them for something more useful if you have extra. If you don’t pick them up, you won’t have any extra.

    Once you approach level 50 or so and start grinding Merciless be sure to re-read this loot guide and remember all items you need to pick up. Never forget to pick up items with 6 sockets (even white ones), and you better click like a madman when you see one with 5 or 6 linked sockets. They are extremely valuable.

    7. Grind experience in groups

    You get more items, more experience and you’ll kill monsters quicker. Path of Exile was built for playing in groups so take advantage of it. If you need advice on where to grind experience read my leveling guide. If you’re having trouble picking up your own loot in groups and hate ninjas just find a group with Permanent loot allocation, or create your own.

    Grinding in groups is also helpful when you’re undergeared or underleveled for a particular area so just hit up that Social panel if you’re having trouble.

    8. Be prepared to spend money

    Although it’s admittedly not a very helpful tip, I’d just like to point out that you will need to spend a few bucks on this game after awhile. You can’t buy items or anything like that, but you will need stash tabs. If you intend on leveling multiple characters you will run out of inventory space in your stash fairly quickly so be prepared to spend about $20. I know a couple of people who loathe spending money on online games and this is a deal breaker for them, which I honestly think is sad, but to each its own.

    I currently have about 80 stash tabs — it’s way, way above what an average player will ever need but I’m a hoarder. 20 stash tabs should be more than enough for an average player, but fortunately it’s not overly expensive.

    9. Not all areas have waypoints

    Before you search the same area three times looking for a waypoint, you might want to take a look at my list of zones which have waypoints, it might just save you some unnecessary searching. In most cases you don’t even need to bother finding waypoints (in Normal and Cruel difficulties) as you’ll simply progress further quite fast and won’t really have a use or need for them later on. Just remember to always try and get to a waypoint before you finish playing as it’s the only way to save progress.

    For the completionists out there who always want to fully clear an area before moving on, remember to use the /remaining command in chat. It will show you how many monsters are left in a particular area before you move on to the next. Also you can type /help for a full list of slash commands.

    10. Trade low-value currencies with a vendor

    Vendors are more than just bots where you dump your trash. They can actually exchange (some) currencies for you so you don’t have to bother spamming the trade channel if you’re missing a few Fusings. You can take a look at the table below for some of the trading ratios:

    Sell: You get: Note
    Jeweller’s Orb x3 Chromatic x1 Not worth it unless you desperately need one or two Chromatics.
    Augmentation Orb x4 Alteration x1 Worth it when you end up with tons of Augmentations after awhile.
    Alteration Orb x2 Jeweller’s Orb x1 Same value.
    Orb of Fusing x1 Orb of Chance x1 Not worth it as 1 Fusing is worth 4 Chance Orbs.
    Jeweller’s Orb x4 Orb of Fusing x1 Market value.
    Orb of Regret x1 Orb of Alchemy x1 Player trade value is around 3.5 Alchemy for 1 Regret.
    Orb of Chance x4 Orb of Scouring x1 Market value.
    Orb of Scouring x2 Orb of Regret x1 Market value.

    This is actually one of the basic ways how low and mid value orb prices are determined on the market. If a vendor exchanges 2 Orbs of Scouring for 1 Orb of Regret it’s a reasonable assumption players won’t exchange them for a different ratio, unless someone is trying to take advantage of your lack of knowledge about the pricing system.

    As you may notice some trades are definitely not worth doing at vendors since you can trade with players with a better ratio, but if (or rather when) you find yourself with hundreds of Alterations rather than bothering with finding a player to trade with for something more valuable you can exchange them at vendors for Jeweller’s or Orb of Fusing: they are also more sought after and thus easier to find players to trade with, not to mention you might need them yourself as well.

    You can take a look at my other post for the currency values to get a better understanding of them, but do note that the in-game prices among players vary often and can be either higher or lower, so it’s more of a guideline than a rule.

    11. Check vendors for items

    Chromatic Orb from Hargan

    One Chromatic Orb won’t make you rich, but it’s still a good trade.

    Vendors sometimes sell items that can be sold back for Chromatic Orbs (see tip #6) for a measly Orb of Augmentation which has a much lower value. Even though a Chromatic isn’t a very valuable orb, it’s still a good trade. Also pay attention to items with 6 sockets and as previously mentioned more importantly 5 and 6 linked sockets, as you can trade them to other players for a whole lot more than they cost. Do note that vendors sell these rarely, but if you check it every once in awhile you may come across one.

    Other resources:

    • http://www.reddit.com/r/pathofexile/wiki/faq – really helpful and organized general information about the game
    • Item mods spreadsheet – probably better for more experienced players, you don’t need to pay attention to this until endgame
    • Accuracy and Evasion table – how much hit percentage you have with a certain amount of Accuracy (quick tip: consider Resolute Technique passive node and you’ll never miss)
    • Currency values – current trade ratios for various forms of currency in Path of Exile
    • Official forums – you might want to take a look at it from time to time, there’s often useful information you can find or even ask other players
    • PoExplorer – if you ever want to buy an item this is the place. Also useful for determining prices in case you want to sell something.
    • ExaltingPoE – when adding additional stats to an item with Exalted Orb this helps you figure out what mods you can get

    If you have any of your own tips or resources, by all means you’re welcome to share them in the comments below.

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