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Last Epoch Beginner Guide: Tips I Wish I Knew Before Playing

In this Last Epoch Beginner Guide, we’ll be going over some useful Last Epoch tips to help you play the game in a more efficient way. Hopefully, it’ll also make it a more enjoyable experience for you especially when you’re new to the game, as these are things I really wish I knew before I began playing myself.

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Last Epoch Beginner Guide: Tips I Wish I Knew Before Playing

Last Epoch has been in Open Beta since April 2019, and has garnered a lot of attention from ARPG fans. The game is now on version 1.0 at February, 21st, with one million copies already sold, and counting. Last Epoch has a huge amount of customization, which gives players a lot of freedom. However, with this freedom comes an astounding amount of choices. With numerous decisions to make it becomes inevitable to make mistakes through trial and error. Our goal in this Last Epoch Beginner Guide is to get you off on the right foot, to make the right choices and so you can enjoy the game as a beginner player. So let’s get into it!

Last Epoch Beginner Guide: Pick a Class You Enjoy

In Last Epoch, there are five Classes, with each class having three masteries or “sub-classes” to specialize in. This results in a total of fifteen Masteries to pick from, and each has its own identity and theme. You will select your base class during the character creation which offers some of the usual ARPG and fantasy-themed classes such as Acolyte, Primalist, Mage, Sentinel, and Rogue. As you would expect the name infers the playstyle of each class.

How to Choose a Mastery

Upon reaching the “End of Time”, which is roughly 2 hours into Last Epoch’s campaign, you will face the major decision of which of the three Masteries you want to select for your chosen Class. This choice is permanent, so take your time to read the descriptions and choose wisely. You cannot undo this decision. The good news is it doesn’t take long to get a new character to the End of Time. So you can make another character at any point if you decide you don’t fancy the playstyle of your chosen Mastery.

Signature Skills/Passive Bonuses

Each Mastery comes with unique features such as a signature skill that’s not available to any other Mastery, along with Mastery passive bonuses. Choosing a Mastery also unlocks the rightmost half of that Mastery’s passive tree. You can still allocate points and unlock skills in the other 2 Mastery passive trees available for your class, but only the first half of those trees. This makes choosing a Mastery an important decision.

Respeccing Master Points

You can respec your Mastery Points in town at the NPCs with the “brain” icon for a modest fee of Gold. This allows you to play around and assign Mastery Points as you get them, without worrying about wasting them. However, note that you cannot undo your Mastery selection itself, you can only reallocate your spent Points.

Not All Skills Are Made Equal

Skills are the backbone of any character build, and Last Epoch has over 120 fully customizable, unique skills, with full skill trees, and for each Mastery there are around 20 skills available to pick from. These come from adding passive points to your base class tree, and also from picking a Mastery, and adding points in said Mastery tree. We’ll go over the basics of this in our Last Epoch Beginner Guide.

These Skills can be “Specialized” with their own skill trees by dropping them into your Specialization slots in the Skills and Specializations window (S key). As you increase your character level, you will unlock more slots in which you can Specialize Skills. Eventually, every skill you use will be specialized.

When a skill is dropped into a specialization slot you will then gain access to its unique skill tree. Here you can select passives that boost the damage of the skill, change its damage type or duration, and even change the way said skill behaves in combat.

You will gain more skill points to spend here as long as you have the skill slotted, up to a maximum of 20 points per skill. You can change your specialized skills or respec them at any time, but you will lose some experience towards skill points in that skill, and you may even lose points to spend. This gives you the freedom to mess around and try different things. But I would recommend spending some time reading what they do first.

Take the Time to Explore Skill Trees and Their Skills

No matter how much focus a class gives to one archetype, it will also have access to skills from other archetypes. Mage for example focuses heavily on spells, but has an entire mastery and several other skills that focus on melee attacks. Primalist on the otherhand has both types, plus a unique skill that can go either full melee or full spell, depending on the customization. While Sentinel focuses on melee but still has access to powerful spells. The Rogue adds a unique set of bow skills that no other class can use. So an important part of learning how to have a successful playthrough in Last Epoch is to identify skills that suit your playstyle and avoid the ones that don’t.

Primalist Example

There’s a very obvious example that comes with the Primalist class, as it splits its focus between Melee and Spells. The standard movement skill of the class is “Fury Leap” which is a melee attack, so it fits naturally into most melee Primalist builds. However, the challenge comes when building a spellcasting Primalist that focuses on cast speed instead of attack speed, and in this case, you will find Fury Leap to be very clunky. If you take a quick glance at the Primalist Skills, you will not find another movement skill, and this might leave you puzzled.

However, upon deeper inspection, there’s a spell available from the Primalist’s base tree that turns into a traversal skill. Choose the Summon Storm Crow, as it only takes 4 points into this Skill’s unique skill tree to change it into this. Now you have a spell that scales with cast speed, and your gameplay will feel more fluid.

It can take some time to identify these skills, as you may not necessarily dive too deeply into what skills you are using at first. However, taking some time to read through some of your Skills’ unique trees can help you if you are struggling.

Last Epoch Beginner Guide: Using Crafting

Unlike most other ARPGs, Last Epoch is the kind of game that encourages crafting from the very beginning. It’s one of the most powerful aspects of the game, as crafting is straightforward, while also having elements of complexity suitable for endgame. Crafting is balanced around picking suitable items from drops and enchanting them as much as possible. You don’t rely solely on crafting to the degree that drops don’t matter, nor do you rely on drops so much that crafting is irrelevant. There is a good balance here.

How Crafting Works

Crafting at a basic level is focused on acquiring affix shards, which can give certain stats to items, but also levels them up to improve their affix values. Affixes can be acquired from drops, from breaking items using a Rune of Shattering, or from removing affixes using a Rune of Removal. Note that these are stored in your inventory, but if you click the “Transfer Materials” button it will free up space for you.

Every item drops with “Forging Potential” value, and crafting with items then depletes some of the Forging Potential. The amount deducted from this value is random, so RNG does play a factor in the amount that is consumed. The higher the Forging Potential an item has, the more you can upgrade it and craft with it before its Potential is gone, and you no longer can.

Last Epoch Beginner Guide - Crafting - Forging Potential

When you get lucky while crafting, items can reach the highest stats possible. On the flip side, being unlucky means crafting stops before you can get good rolls. This system doesn’t punish players for crafting with an item, but instead will always make items better, even if they are not always a lot better. So everyone is recommended to engage with the crafting system, regardless of how high or low their character level is.

Rune of Shattering

You can get Runes of Shattering from drops, or buy them from vendors (no more than 4 at a time, for 2k gold each). When you get an item with a desired stat, but the item is not good enough to craft (say it has the wrong item base), you may shatter it.

The shattering breaks the item and gives the player a random number of affix shards that were on the item. With a little luck, you’ll get the desired affix shard, so you can craft it onto another good item.

Rune of Removal

When you get an item with a high tier of the desired affix, you might consider using Rune of Removal instead. Since Rune of Removal doesn’t destroy the item outright. It instead removes one affix, and gives shards equal to the affix tier. So a T5 stat will give 5 shards of the stat when targeted by Rune of Removal. This helps you build a reserve of rare affix shards that can then be used when you find the item you are looking for.

Pair Rune of Removal with a Glyph of Hope when crafting, try to preserve Forging Potential. That way you can extract shards for more stats on the item, and when the item depletes its Forging Potential, resort to shattering it with a Rune of Shattering.

Rune of Discovery

While leveling, when you get a blue (magic) item, you may use Rune of Discovery to fill out empty affixes. This is especially useful in the early game, for accounts that haven’t saved a lot of shards yet.

Runes of Discovery don’t consume any Forging Potential when used on items. They simply make items much more useful, with the ability to upgrade further when you acquire more shards.

Glyph of Hope

Glyph of Hope adds a chance for crafting to not consume Forging Potential. This increases the total number of times an item can be upgraded, and results in better items overall. Try to use these when you can or on items you plan to upgrade a lot.

These are not the only things you can use to craft in Last Epoch but are the most important ones to get you started. We’ll likely have an advanced Crafting Guide later on, in case you have further questions, so look out for that.

Last Epoch Beginner Guide: Make Your Own Loot Filter

As I’ve explained, using crafting requires good item drops to begin with. To avoid sorting through tens or hundreds of items Last Epoch provides a carefully designed Loot Filter. It’s not an exaggeration to say it’s the best Loot Filter in the entire genre of ARPGs. So the moment you start feeling your screen become overcrowded, press your loot filter hotkey (Shift + F by default) and start adding some filter rules.


Standard Level: Hide irrelevant items and show the rarest ones

Rules in the item filter apply from bottom to top. Meaning the rule on the top will override the rules on the bottom. So you should start with hiding items you don’t need, then make rules as exceptions.

So as an example, you play a Mage class that focuses on spell casting. The only weapons relevant for spell casting are Wand, Scepter, and Staff. The only off-hand viable is the Catalyst. This allows you to hide every other weapon, plus the lowest rarity items. Here’s an example of the rules below:

  • Hide -> Rarity: Regular
  • Hide -> Item Type: Two-Handed Axe, Two-Handed Mace, Two-Handed Sword, Spear, One-Handed Axe, One-Handed Mace, One-Handed Sword, Dagger, Bow, Quiver, Shield.
  • Show -> Rarity: Exalted, Unique, Set
Loot Filter - Item Types

These three rules are the bare minimum you will need in order to clear screen clutter. It will get rid of 70% of things you don’t want to see while leveling in the early to mid-campaign.

Silver Level: Highlight your main weapon and important stats

After a while, your clear speed will increase, while rare (Yellow) item drops increase. This again will result in slowing down to check which items might be useful to you. You might hit this phase after level 30 or 40, so you need new rules in your item filter. Say you have decided you need a wand more than any other spellcaster weapon. Also, your main damage type is Fire.

  • Recolor -> Item Type: Wand | Rarity: Rare | Affix: Fire Damage, Elemental Damage -> Advanced: At least one Affix

If your main defense as a Mage is Ward, then you also need a rule to highlight off-hand Catalysts with Ward Retention and/or Ward per second. You will see detailed info about item bases while picking subtypes, so you can highlight the ones with the most useful stats.

  • Recolor -> Item Type: Catalyst -> Sub Type: Ritual Stone, Rune Stone, Opulent Focus

You may add similar rules for every item slot, to highlight the most useful sub-types once you figure out what you need.

Loot Filter - Rules

Gold Level: Highlight very rare stats for breaking or using

You can also highlight the most useful stats, regardless of item type, for shattering and removal purposes. This is recommended to be done on rarer stats. It requires a higher character level so that your gold income is steady enough to keep buying Runes of Shattering from vendors. You may also use items found this way instead of breaking them if they fit your build.

Some of the very rare stats are [Element] Penetration on Amulet, and + level to [Skill] on Helmet, Body Armour, and Relic. There are also build-defining defensive stats, such as “Potion Health Converted to Ward”, and “Ward and Ailment Cleansing on Potion Use” on Belt.

  • Recolor -> Affix: [Select all relevant and valuable stats]
Loot Filter - Affixes

That covers the basics of constructing a functional Loot Filter, that should have you set for a long way. However, there are a lot more advanced levels, and that requires its own dedicated guide.

We hope you found these starter tips useful for beginning your adventure for Last Epoch. Don’t miss out on more of our guides. If you need a catch-up on what’s new check out our 1.0 Everything You Need to Know Guide. Learn about the new Warlock mastery right here.

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