Welcome to the Path of Exile Elder guide, exile. The Elder has one of the hardest boss fights in game that requires a lot of knowledge to beat it. You should be proud of yourself if you have already beat the Elder. Otherwise, this is where you should be, to learn more about the boss fights, abilities and mechanics.
The Elder is a boss that is invading the Atlas of Worlds. He is the main antagonist of the War for the Atlas expansion. The Elder randomly spawns and fights the Shaper via influencing. The Elder will spawn on the player’s Atlas once at least 20 maps are influenced.
Completing 20 maps while the Elder and its guardians are on the player’s Atlas without actually defeating any of them gives them a chance to disappear and remove the Elder-influence from the maps they were on.
The Elder Spawn Mechanics
The Level and Tier of all the encounters (Elder and Guardians) is determined by the map base which the Elder spawns. All of the encounters (Elder and Guardians) will be the level of the map zone on which the Elder spawns.
For example, Elder spawns on a Tier 5 map, which is zone Level 72. All encounters will be level 72 regardless of map base that the Guardians spawn on. The Elder will also ignore shaped map levels and based on the original level of the map base.
The tier in drops of the encounters will be determined by the major tier coloring systems of the maps which is the White, Yellow and Red maps.
Encountering The Elder
To encounter the Elder, you must first defeat all four of his Elder Guardians that spawns alongside with him, which are the Enslaver, Constrictor, Purifier and Eradicator. Once they are defeated and removed from the Atlas, simply enter the map base of the Elder spawns and make your way to the end to face the boss.
The map can be any rarity or any modifiers as they do not apply to the arena where you must face the Elder. Once at the boss, the Elder will emerge from a void portal. Defeat the boss and a portal will appear. This portal will lead you to the Elder’s arena.
The Elder will always spawn in the Absence of Value and Meaning.
Absence of Value and Meaning
The Absence of Value and Meaning is the name of the arena that the Elder spawns. This arena does not have any special environmental effects like the Elder Guardians and will always have the same size and layout every time.
Emerging from the depths of the twisted voids of the mapping system is the Elder. The Elder is an ancient being that twists and disturbs the mind of those who venture into his realm. During the Shaper’s ventures into map, he was challenged by the Elder for control of the Atlas and has now brought a war between them.
With this, we must now assist the Shaper and taking down the Elder. The Elder has a three phase fight with the first phase being the most difficult. If you end up failing defeating the Elder, you just have to simply run another map of that base which are always cheaper and more available compared with other boss fights such as the Shaper.
There will be three phases during the Elder encounter.
Basic Melee Attack
The Elder attacks with a basic melee attack that deals moderate physical damage.
The Elder launches ice spears projectiles in front of him and deal heavy cold damage. These projectiles can easily apply chill or freeze debuff on the target, resulting in failure of dodging the next ability. The Elder has different variations of the Ice Spears attack.
Ring of Death
The Elder casts a ring around him, creating a field that gradually grows larger over time. The ring will cover the entire arena and explodes, dealing high physical damage. The center of the ring is safe from the explosion.
The Elder will disappear into the ground and reappear behind your character, applying sprouting madness. This ability slows down your action speed greatly, he will then create a white outlined semi-circle where he will drain the life from you, dealing physical damage over time. This is a physical damage over time that can be avoided by standing outside of the targeted area.
Once the Elder falls below 60% health, the Elder will now perform a new variation of Siphon, where he will freeze you in place within the white semi-circle. The Shaper will assist you by teleporting behind the Elder, hitting him and cancelling the Siphon attack.
Slamming Tentacle Whip
The Elder will ascend into the air and summon multiple conjoined tentacles that slams the ground around them, dealing physical damage in a small area of effect.
The Elder spins around, launching multiple cold damage projectiles that impact in a ring around him, then teleports away. He will then teleport to your location and do a slam that deals heavy physical damage.
Floating tentacle adds will spawn around the arena during the Elder boss fight. They attack with ranged lightning projectiles that deal minimal damage but can apply shock debuff. The main concern of the adds are the decaying ground that the adds apply if they are left alive.
This ground effect dark grey and deals physical damage over time. This ground effect will also remain on the ground for the entire Elder fight throughout all phases.
Once you bring the Elder to 25% health, the Shaper will chain him down to the center of the arena and it will begin Phase Two. Phase Two is simply a timed add spawn phase. You have to protect the Shaper while he completes the four restraints that he has placed on the Elder.
Portals will appear and spawn adds, these portals can be temporarily destroyed but will reappear shortly after destruction. More portals will be added into the arena when the Shaper complete a restraint.
If you fail to protect the Shaper in this phase, the Elder will be released and you must fight him in his first phase again until you defeat him. If you have successfully defended the Shaper, Phase Three will start.
In Phase Three, you just have to nuke down the Elder’s health pool while he remained restrained by the Shaper in the center of the arena. As easy as it sounds, the Elder can still perform many deadly moves.
He will continue to spawn Null Portals and attack with Tentacle Whip, Ice Spear novas, and Ring of Death, but will also periodically release a large dark pulse that deals physical damage and covers the entire arena.
When the Elder is killed in this phase, he will charge up a final lethal blast. Zana will appear at the bottom right side of the arena with a protective bubble. Retreat to Zana before he uses his last attack.
Preparing against the Elder
(Life, Energy Shield, MoM) – Minimal at least 5500 HP. You can do it with 5000 if you have good damage mitigation.
(Flask, HP Regeneration, Life Leech) – The Elder has many moves that degenerates your HP and it is unavoidable, you are going to need some sort of defensive life sustain.
Physical Damage Mitigations
Arctic Armour is a very good buff to reduce both physical damage and fire damage taken. It can reduce up to 13% physical damage and 12% fire damage taken at Level 20 skill gem.
Basalt Flask can reduce up to 15% physical damage taken while on use. One of the best and cheap defensive flasks in the game against physical damages.
Fortify is one of the best defensive buffs in game which reduce damage taken by 20%. If you are a melee build, feel free to remove one of your melee attack supports with a Fortify Support.
Cold Damage Mitigations
Sapphire Flask is a very cheap option while being really effective to mitigates cold damage. Gain a total of +50% cold resistance with +6% to max cold resistance. Taste of Hate is an unique version of the Sapphire Flask and it is very powerful for attack-based builds. Taste of Hate has the physical damage taken as elemental property. With Taste of Hate active, a portion of physical damage is taken as cold damage.
Purity of Ice is a defensive cold resistance aura that gives a bunch of cold resistance and most importantly, maximum cold resistance %. Total of 4% maximum cold resistance at skill gem Level 20.
Fast Movement Skill
You need a fast movement skill to escape and avoid boss mechanics, such as Shield Charge, Whirling Blades, Leap Slam, etc.
The Elder has a lot of health pool and requires a strong single target skill, depending on your build. If you are unsure about your damage, here is how you can determine if you can beat the Elder.
If you are able to kill the highest level boss of that map tier color, your DPS should be enough for that tier Elder. Of course, it depends on the player as well, not just pure statistics.
The Encounter is not timed but requires to manage the spawned monsters before they drop patches of degeneration ground, it will just make the boss fight tougher as it goes on.
Phase One is the phase where the Elder fights at his strongest form. First of all, it is very important to kill the adds as soon as they spawn into the arena. They will leave a patch of eldritch decay permanently if it is left alive long enough, which deals physical damage over time while standing over them. Killing them quickly is important so that the arena does not become overwhelmed by them.
- Stay focus and pay attention to every each of the Elder attacks. Prepare to use flask if needed and movement skill to avoid getting bursted by the attacks.
- You can easily avoid taking damage from Ice Spears by sidestepping.
- When the Elder start casting Ring of Death, prepare to stand in the center to avoid taking damage whenever the explosion is about to go off. The Ring of Death covers the entire arena, you cannot miss it.
- Slamming Tentacle Whip can be very dangerous if not paying attention. There are a slight delay before they are spawn and starts slamming the ground, use that advantage to stay far enough from taking damage.
- Rising Slam can be difficult to dodge, especially the cold projectiles that the Elder launches when he spins. Make sure that your Sapphire Flask are ready as it deals cold damage. After that, he will teleport to your location and slam the ground that deal heavy damage. You can avoid simply by moving around the arena.
Protect the Shaper at all cost, focus the adds with your attacks. If possible, you can clear both portals and adds at the same time but you should always focus on adds first. Probably the easiest phase of all three. If you failed to protect the Shaper, you will skip Phase Three and back to Phase One and fight the Elder till it is defeated.
Similar with Phase One but with different variety of attacks. They are a little different but does the same thing. The Shaper is vulnerable at the center of the arena and your objective is to kill it as fast as you can while dodging all the dead abilities that the Elder cast.
Once you burn down all his health, Zana will appear on the map and you need to stand in her protective bubble when the Elder explodes.
Item Loot and Reward
The Elder can drop Elder items. Elder items are powerful items with modifiers not found elsewhere, as well as higher-tier versions of some existing modifiers. He can also drop these exclusive unique items.
Tier 1 and up:
Tier 6 and up:
Tier 11 and up:
Tier 17 (Uber Elder encounter):