Road to Uber Elder

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This guide was written by perrythepig. If he’s online, check out his stream below!

Endgame Goals in Path of Exile

Betrayal League (3.5)

Part 1: Atlas Completion and the Road to Uber Elder

Section 1: Introduction

Section 2: Our Goals

Section 3: Why Uber Elder?

Section 4: From Nightmare into Dream

Section 5: The Hidden Architect

Section 6: Avoid the Roadblocks

Section 7: The Memory Eater

Section 8: Fighting the Shaper

Section 9: Prepping the Uber Elder Encounter

Section 1: Introduction

Players set various goals for themselves in Path of Exile. Some players want to reach level 100, some may want to make as much currency as possible, and others just want to create unique and interesting builds. One thing is certain: Path of Exile is not just 10 Acts. While some of the following goals are related to one another, each of them has a unique set of strategies and rewards, and each appeals to a distinct audience:

  • Mapping
  • Atlas Completion
  • Uber Elder
  • Magic-Finding
  • Completing Master Objectives
  • Other Endgame Bosses
  • Delving
  • Level 100
  • Making Currency
  • League Challenges
  • Crafting an Item
  • Completing a Build
  • Making a new Build

In this guide, we are working toward two goals:

  1. Atlas Completion
  2. Defeating Uber Elder


Section 2: Our Goals

Atlas Progression & Uber Elder

Atlas Completion means that we want to complete the “Bonus Objective” on each map on the Atlas. In the middle of your Atlas, you will see a number, “0/159”. There are 159 maps on the Atlas, including all the unique maps. The “Bonus Objective” for each map is shown when you hover your mouse over the map in your Atlas. (Note that this does not include Unique Boss Encounters like Atziri and the Pale Council.)

White Map (Tier 1-5) Bonus Objective: Kill the boss of a magic version of the map
Yellow Map (Tier 5-10) Bonus Objective: Kill the boss of a rare version of the map
Red Map (Tier 11-15) Bonus Objective: Kill the boss of a rare & corrupted version of the map*

In this guide, we will call low, medium, and high tier maps “white maps,” “yellow maps,” and “red maps,” respectively.

For unique maps, this is often just a matter of luck and farming divination cards. You will often farm divination cards for unique maps, or, in a Trade League, simply buy them from another player. When it comes to finding a specific unique map, like in Solo Self-Found for example, there is information on the Community POE Wiki that will guide the way.

Defeating Uber Elder means that we are completing the Zana Questline. We will find Shaper in maps, fight the Shaper Guardians, kill Shaper, fight the Uber Elder Guardians, and finally complete the Uber Elder encounter. It’s a long journey, and it represent some of the most difficult content that Path of Exile has to offer. Let’s get started.

Section 3: Why Uber Elder

The Road to Uber is a long and difficult one, but does it pay off? Let’s take a look at some of the unique rewards that are only available from this boss encounter:

Disintegrator, Indigon, Voidfletcher, Mark of the Elder, Mark of the Shaper, Voidforge, Watcher’s Eye

There are even more unique items that can only drop from Elder, but these are also available from previous Elder fights. Note that a Watcher’s Eye Prismatic Jewel can drop from previous Elder encounters as well, but a Watcher’s Eye with three unique Aura attributes is only available from Uber Elder.

Each of these items is extremely powerful and build-enabling in nature. Of particular interest is the 3-mod Watcher’s Eye jewel. Because the three unique Aura attributes on a Watcher’s Eye roll randomly from a large pool of potential values, the three mods on the jewel can range from a bit lackluster (“Unaffected by Burning Ground while affected by Purity of Fire”), or extremely powerful (“+1.8% to Critical Strike Chance while affected by Hatred”). Finding the right one for your build, or the right one to sell for a huge profit, can be quite the endeavor.

Section 4: From Nightmare into Dream

The Very Beginning of Mapping

When you finish Act 10 & kill Kitava, you are dropped off in Oriath without much direction. Where should you go next? What’s your purpose? Have you finished the game?

One of the big appeals of Path of Exile is the endgame — everything beyond Act 10. The basics of the endgame all revolve around Zana, Maps, and the Map Device.

Guide: Zana and the Map Device

Talk to Zana in Oriath and go to the “Templar Laboratory” via the door at the top-right of town. Go down the spiral staircase and talk to Zana. She will give you your first map, in case you haven’t found one from an enemy yet. This begins your journey into the world of Mapping!


Section 5: The Hidden Architect

Chasing Shaper Influence on the Atlas

Your Atlas will initially be plain: there will be icons of maps, but nothing else. As you complete your first few maps, Shaper Influence — denoted by a dark starry background — will randomly influence one of the maps in your quadrant of the Atlas.

Goal: To complete each tier of Shaper-Influenced map
Reward: Zana will reward you with a map of your choosing of the same tier

Recommendation: For your reward, select a map that you have not completed yet. If you have completed all maps of that tier, consider the 3-to-1 recipes to a map of the higher tier.

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Section 6: Avoid the Roadblocks

Tips for Obtaining Higher Tier maps

Atlas progression is a common complaint among new players: at times, it might feel like the random map drops are preventing your progress more than the difficulty of the content.

Monsters naturally drop maps: Magic Monsters and Rare Monsters naturally have a chance of dropping a map one tier higher than the map you are in, and Unique Monsters have a chance to drop a map two levels higher than your current map. As you continue to complete the bonus objectives of each map, the number in the middle of your Atlas will grow. This number indicates the probability of dropping maps of higher tiers.  For example, 20/159 signifies a 20% chance for maps to one tier higher; 120/159 signifies a 20% chance for maps to drop two tiers higher.

If you use the tools at your disposal, you can avoid some of the pitfalls of completing your Atlas. Whether you are playing Solo Self-Found (“SSF”) or Softcore Trade League, the following tips will get you progressing through your Atlas smoothly.

Every map can be sold 3-to-1 for one map of a higher tier. However, not every map can be obtained via this method. More information on the specifics can be found on the community POE Wiki.

Corrupting your Maps
When you use a Vaal Orb on a map item, you “corrupt” that map item. One of the possible outcomes of corrupting a map item is that it will become one tier higher.

Harbinger Orb
Using a Harbinger Orb on a map item will make it become a random map that is one tier higher. This also has the chance of changing the map into a unique Beachhead map.

Cartographer’s Strongbox
One of the strongboxes you will find in the wild is a Cartographer’s Strongbox. You can use currency like Transmutations and Chaos on a strongbox, the same way that you can use that currency on a Sword or a Helmet.

One of the possible mods on a Strongbox is “+# Chest Level”. If you roll “+2 Chest Level” on a Cartographer’s Strongbox in a tier 5 map, the resulting maps can be up to tier 7.

Note: Cartographer’s Strongboxes stop spawning after Tier 13 maps

Uber Labyrinth
The treasure boxes at the end of the Eternal Labyrinth (“Uber Lab”) have a chance to drop Yellow and Red maps.

Buying from Zana
Zana will sell maps to you. Keep an eye out for high tier maps and any maps that you have not completed yet. Zana will sell you higher tier maps as you continue to complete her Objectives, so we want to prioritize these whenever possible.

Orb of Horizons
While these do not grant higher tier maps, Orbs of Horizons can used on a map to randomly alternate it to another map of the same tier. This is a very useful tool to use while working through the Atlas for the first time, or  when trying to find the right tier 16 map. The most common way of obtaining these currently is by completing a “Shaper Stronghold”.

Section 7: The Memory Eater

Elder Influence and Memory Fragments

Your Atlas so far has only contained maps and Shaper Influence. As you continue to complete your maps, Elder Influence — denoted by a dark blob with tentacles — will begin to influence a few of your maps on the Atlas. Your objective here is to gather “Shaper Memory Fragments,” which you will turn in to Zana.

First Goal: to complete Elder-Influenced maps
Second Goal: to complete a Red-Tier Elder encounter, along with the 4 Elder Guardians
Reward: Shaper Memory Fragments & Shaper’s Orbs

There are 15 Memory Fragments total. The first ten are obtained in the same way as the first: running a Elder-Influenced map of tier 6-15. When you hover your mouse over the Elder-Influenced map on your Atlas, you will see text: “Contains Memory Fragment”. There is a corresponding circle on that map on the Atlas, which denotes that a Memory Fragment is available there. In order to spread the Elder Blob, refer to the section below, “Controlling the Elder Influence.”

The last five memory fragments are only available by completing a Red Elder encounter. “Red Elder” is the term for an Elder encounter where the Elder himself spawns on a tier 11-15 map (denoted by their map red symbol, “red map”). Memory Fragments 11-14 will drop from the Elder Guardian encounters.

The last Memory Fragment, Memory Fragment 15, can only be obtained by completing the Red-Tier Elder encounter.

Reward: Shaper’s Orb
Each Memory Fragment needs to be turned into Zana, at which point she will grant you a “Shaper’s Orb.” These Orbs are used on a corresponding map on the Atlas to raise it +5 tiers, and they are part of various advanced Atlas strategies and farming strategies. You do not need to take the Shaper’s Orbs from Zana, and you do not need to use them on your Atlas. You can return to Zana at any time to collect a Shaper’s Orb reward.

Spawning the Elder:
The Elder Blob will expand and contract on your Atlas — it can spread across many maps, or it can sit on only one map. When the Elder Blob grows big enough, there is a chance that Elder and his four guardians will appear on your Atlas.

Controlling the Elder Influence:

Here are some of the rules that govern Elder Blob movement on your Atlas:

  1. Shaper Influence tends to spawn next to Elder Influence.
  2. If you complete a Shaper-Influenced map that is next to the Elder Influence, the Elder Influence will spread and become bigger
  3. If you complete a Elder-Influenced map that is next to Shaper Influence, Shaper Influence will take over that map.
  4. If you complete a Elder-Influenced map, Elder Influence will no longer be on that map.
  5. If you cut the Elder Influence in half by completing a Elder-Influenced map that would otherwise connect the two other Elder-Influenced maps, only the larger Elder Blob will continue to exist.

Elder Guardians — and Elder himself — will replace the Unique Map Boss of the map. Any map mods on that map will not be present for the Elder or Elder Guardian encounter.

Check out the POE Guides section of POE Lab

Section 8: Fighting the Shaper

First Goal: Defeat the four Shaper Guardians
Reward: Fragment of the Chimera, Fragment of the Phoenix, Fragment of the Hydra, Fragment of the Minotaur

Second Goal: Defeat the Shaper
Reward: Elder Orb, Opportunity to spawn the Uber Elder encounter

For the first goal, all we need to do is complete four tier 16 maps. Ideally we want to complete the Bonus Objective of these maps (complete a rare + corrupted version of the map), for the purpose of Atlas Completion. However, we can still achieve the same outcome by completing a white tier 16 map with no mods on it. The four Guardian maps can be completed in any order.

Once we have all four of our Fragments, we can activate the Shaper encounter by placing all four Fragment pieces in our Map Device. Note that these need to be placed in the correct order, like four puzzle pieces.

Check out the POE Guides section of POE Lab

Upon successfully completing the Shaper encounter, you will see a short dialogue between Shaper and Zana. At the end of this dialogue, Shaper will drop the “Shaper’s Key”. Pick up this quest item, and exit the Shaper’s Realm. Make your way back to the Templar Laboratory and go down the spiral staircase, to where the Map Device is. On the right side of this room, enter the “Sealed Storeroom”. Once inside, talk to Zana and she will give you the “Elder Orb”. You do not need to take this orb now — you can return at any point to take this from Zana. There are many strategies associated with the Elder Orb, and particular methods of farming maps, but we will not discuss those in this guide. What matter to us is that we have successfully completed the Shaper encounter, and we can now work toward spawning the Uber Elder encounter.

Section 9: Prepping the Uber Elder Encounter

The process of spawning the Uber Elder encounter is a long one — twice as long as preparing for the Shaper encounter. Unlike the Shaper encounter, this is not simply a matter of putting four fragments into the map device. We need to manipulate Shaper and Elder Influence in a particular way in order to spawn this boss fight.

Step 1:
Bring Elder Influence on to a tier 15 map, so that Shaper Influence appears on all four of the Guardian maps & the Shaper Realm

Step 2:
Complete the four Guardian Maps, starting with the Shaper-Influenced Guardian map adjacent to the Elder Influence

Note: After the first map, I recommend completing the remaining Guardian maps in a clockwise (or counterclockwise) manner. If you do Hydra first and then Minotaur, for example, you will not spread the Elder influence properly.

When you finish the four Guardian maps (Shaper Guardian bosses), you will have successfully spread Elder Influence across all four tier 16 maps & the Shaper’s Realm. Open your Atlas and ensure that the four Elder Guardians have spawned on these tier 16 maps.

Step 3:
Complete the tier 16 maps. The Elder Guardian Bosses will replace the normal Shaper Guardians. Again, note that the map mods for these tier 16 maps will not influence the Elder Guardian boss encounters.

Step 4:
We have now completed 8 tier 16 maps — four with Shaper Influence and Shaper Guardian bosses, and four with Elder Influence and Elder Guardian bosses. Place the four Shaper Fragments into the map device, and you will begin the Uber Elder encounter.

Check out the POE Guides section of POE Lab

Even the players with 100+ Uber Elder kills had to start somewhere, and everyone struggles the first couple times. Don’t be afraid to fail once or twice: the fight is mechanically intensive, very high damage, and punishing. This is one of the most difficult encounters currently available in Path of Exile, and getting there is only half the battle. Good luck!



  1. I’ve killed Uber Elder like 10 times now and I still don’t know why sometimes Elder influence gets remomved from the guardian maps. I do them Clockwise or anticlockwise.

    It just happend again. I started with ‘Phoenix map’ and got it Elder influenced, then ‘Hydra map’ and that one got Elder influenced aswell.
    But after I did ‘Chimera map’, the Elder influence on ‘Hydra map’ swapped to Shaped influenced and ‘Chimera map’ is still Shaped influenced.

    I don’t do any other map.
    I don’t do the same map twice.

  2. Thank you for the quality content and guides that you guys give to the community. All of the content is top notch, well put together, and easy to understand.

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