Racing guide (Path of Exile)

Path of Exile features a game-mode known as Races, where players compete to reach the higher amount of experience points / levels in a certain amount of time. Some races can be as short as a few minutes, while other can be up to a month. The most common race is however 1 hour.

In races, areas have special modifiers that are determined by what type of race it is. For example, Headhunter Races will give your character the effect of the unique trigger from the Headhunter Belt, and every time you kill an enemy, you gain its mods for 20 secs. For a complete list of all the different race mods, check out the Wiki entry on races.

When you are entering a race, you need to be there at the correct time. If you are late, you are at a disadventage against the ones who arrived on time. So check the Event Schedule to find out when the races begins.

Race strategy

This part of the guide is a general race strategy that will get you far into the race, but since all races have different modifiers, it might not work for every single one. You should twerk it to fit the type of event that are run, for example by speccing into some more defense for the harder events.

If you are new to racing, you should not expect to get the top prizes without a lot of practice, and like any other race, you should create a few characters and level them as fast as possible to get some practice done before the actual race. Having to alt-tab to this guide to check your talent points is not going to win you the race, so prepare ahead!

Some general racing tips

These tips might be common sense for a lot of players, but make sure you are aware of all of them:
- Don't fully clear any area. In terms of experience points per hour, this is a terrible waste! Only engage with packs of mobs that are worth the time it takes to kill them, and in most cases you are better off running along to a higher level area.

- Don't do all quests. For example, Fetid Pools are a complete waste of time both in terms of experience and quest reward.

- Pick up any quicksilver flasks that might drop. These are very useful for the events!

- Check Tarkleigh at the start of the race to see if he has any movement speed increase boots for sale. A few extra percentages will go a long way in a one-hour race. Also check out vendors for Coral Rings (health regen) and Sapphire Rings (Cold Resistance) to make the boss fight Merveil a lot easier.

- Sapphire Rings can be gotten from vendors by trading an Iron Ring and any blue gem, so do this if you don''t get a Sapphire Ring by any other means.

- The vendor have their inventories reset every time you level up, so check back in with them every once in a while.

- Once you are done with an area that you have the waypoint to, relog instead of using a Scroll of Portal. 

- Shields and chest armour decreases your movement speed, so you might want to play without these two slots.

- Rare mobs (yellow) and Unique mobs are generally not worth killing in terms of XP, but might drop some nice loot. Rather focus on magic (blue) mob packs.

- Get comfortable with speccing and managing the inventory while on the run. This might take some practice, so make sure you are comfortable with this prior to beginning the race.

Which class to pick?

The choice of class of course depends on what specc you are going to run, but generally speaking Shadow or Scion is the best race class, and most good racers will play as either of them.

Zone strategy

Twilight Strand: Don't kill anything except Hillock at the end to unlock the town. Pick up the loot from him and vendor it, then check for rings and movement speed boots.

The Coast: Rush trough it, and only kill big packs if you have an AoE ability ready.

The Tidal Island: Rush to Hailrake if you are comfortable with killing him, which can be pretty difficult at level 1/2. Killing him awards a Quicksilver Flask, so for the longer races, it is generally worth it. A lot of players wait a few levels before going here for the Quicksilver flask, and the waypoint is right next to the zone screen, so waiting a bit is not really a big time loss.

The Mud Flats: Quickly try to find all the gems to open the passage These are connected by small water streams that you can follow to find them all. Kill and big mob packs, especially if blue.

The Fetid Pool: Don't go to this area.