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I knew going into it that this league was not going to be that exciting and that is ok. I think under the circumstance that Path of Exile had a massive expansion to the core game that the league would be a bit bland. The Path of Exile community has come to expect that when it happens.
While a lot of leagues in the past I’ve put together some kind of guide this is not one of those leagues. The mechanics behind the league were quite simple. You kill monsters for token drops, place them in a shrine, and fight a rare monster based on that token for item drops.
You can further put one more token into a shrine for each one you find up to the maximum of four per map. Depending on the pattern of tokens you place in you can get a higher token to drop like you were making a combination.
Token combinations order in the shrines has some importance if you want to get a higher tier of tokens to drop. The basic combinations when dealing with a 4 shrine zone are as follows 2,3, 4; 2, and 2. That was quite easy to work on since day one of the league.
As far as trying to get the league tokens to drop that you want for the combination you are going for. Different modifiers on monsters in Path of Exile have been assigned their token base to drop. Many are quite easy to work out once you notice the pattern.
For example, the Vampiric token drops from monsters that have leeches life. Another simple example is deadeye dropping from monsters with the accurate modifier. It makes sense and that is always nice.
It also makes a league like this kind of boring from a content creation standpoint. There is not a lot to talk about regarding the league mechanic itself as that is something better covered by data miners of video games and those who enjoy chart making.
There are some giant complex charts that the Path of Exile community has made that showcase every single possible combination for getting the higher tier tokens to drop. There are even bigger data charts trying to work out the best tokens to use with each other for maximum loot. Yay for data crunchers out there.
The biggest issue from my own experience and why I never sought after or even attempted most of the combinations that I worked out is simple. They did not get the time invested vs reward portion of this league correct at the very start. It’s not uncommon for them to need to change some things as a league progresses along. Sometimes you swear you are just beta testing the next content to be added to the game.
For most of the league, I was just farming for the same tokens. Mirror Image which added the loot type scarabs to the drop and rolled all drops twice picking the rarest outcome. Treant Horde which caused the rare’s adds that spawned to drop loot. Followed by Assassin and rejuvenating for currency drops.
For the first two weeks or so of the league that combination was netting me around 1 Exalt drop 40% of the time on a map run I used it on. Those tokens are tier 2 which required me to farm up some lower base tokens, put them into a shrine to fight a monster, and get them as drops. That would take a few maps to run and have it all ready to go.
There are much harder recipe combinations that consume quite a lot of time to acquire. They however from my understanding did not always depend on RNG even drop half the loot value that the above combo I was using did.
After a while, they started patching Path of Exile over and over again. I knew the fun was over once I went 4 runs of the full combo setup with 0 Exalt drops. In my eyes, there is no other reason for even farming Archnemesis unless you are doing it for scarabs and Exalt or better drops. My stash is full of scarabs already.
I understand why changes needed to be made. There was no real reason for players to invest a lot of time going after the highest tiers of tokens and making the hardest rare monster fight. I think however they should have buffed more the top and not nuked the bottom.
There are so many other things that could spawn in a map that if you don’t become picky you could spend half an hour or longer trying to do it all. Archnemesis has to compete with the other ways people farm in the game. If it cannot at least hold water to those other things it simply becomes a skip over and spends time somewhere else kind of deal.
While trying to farm for the tokens you wanted you would naturally get a bunch of other ones. Along with a lot of repeats ending up with an endless bottleneck of not getting what you needed to run the next combo on shrines you wanted.
For whatever reason, the developers thought it would be a good idea to not only have each token have an item level but for them to also not stack. This meant you were constantly trying to organize and delete tokens out of Archnemesis storage that could only hold 64 tokens.
This should have been past mistakes that they did not need to relearn from yet again. While having an item level gave players yet another way to try and target farm for certain unique since one of the Archnemesis tokens had unique items drop. Beyond the first couple days of the league where players wanted leveling items like a Tabula Rasa that quickly become not needed.
With how old of a game Path of Exile is and how often league mechanics get added to the core game once the league is over. I’m hoping Archnemesis League will not get added. I don’t see much reason for it to be other than something most players will just skip over.
While some components I think could get added such as the new modifier types they added to monsters. Which I assume should not be that hard to separate it from everything else. I just don’t see what the actual league mechanic added to the game that we don’t already have something close enough to it. We already have Metamorph which had you collect organs and combine them to make a boss fight.
While in the past Path of Exile would usually play the card “we put a lot of development resources into this league” that was code to the player base that a league would get added. This league felt like a throw-away one since most of their development resource went towards the expansion leaving what was leftover to work on the league.
The expansion itself and all the other content in Path of Exile I never put huge amounts of time into enjoying before is what kept me around so long in this league. As far as Archnemesis itself I mostly stopped caring about it after two weeks in. It was fine while it lasted but the novelty of it has worn off.
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