This blog post will be covering the runs in Act 1 Inferno. Once people hit Inferno at level 60 they will often run into a brick wall and will need to perform a gear check. This post won’t be covering the gear check specifically, but in the current state of the game and the economy it is possible to gear up relatively cheaply (~1 million gold) and grind through Act 1. Previously, this was much more expensive but the market is now saturated with good gear from Act 2 and Act 3 in Inferno. Here’s some basic points about the runs:
- Monsters in Act 1 are all level 61. This means unlike the previous difficulties, the relative difficulty of monsters will not increase via the level as you progress through the act. Instead, the difficulty of mobs will depend entirely on the inherent traits (i.e. mobility, dmg) of the monster throughout the entirety of Act 1.
- It is now possible to get the highest ilvl items in Act 1 (ilvl 63), albeit at a much lower rate than Act 2/3 (1/2 Act 2, 1/4 Act 3)
- Mobs in early Act 1 tend to be less mobile and easier to take down.
The purpose of runs are:
- Get good gear to use on your character. But more often…
- Get good gear to sell on the Auction House.
Please note that the goal of a run is not to progress through the game. In addition for a run to be worth it, you must be able to do it in a timely and relatively easy fashion. Dying a few times is OK, but you should not be skipping hardly any elites.
Usually in runs you will go to the furthest waypoint and get 5 stacks of Nephalem Valor before killing the set boss. You should also be carrying a separate set of magic find gear that should be swapped on when you kill any elite pack and set boss. Usually you can get this for really cheap in the Auction House and it dramatically speeds up the time grinding to get the sickest loot. Having all 5 stacks is extremely important because it ensures that every set boss will drop at least 2 rares. The first 3 stacks guarantee additional magic items. 4 stacks of Nephalem Valor guarantees 1 rare. The 5th stack of Nephalem Valor now guarantees an additional rare from elite packs.
The primary run done in Act 1 now is to do an elite run, utilizing the guaranteed nature of elite packs in Act 1. There are two secondary, boss-based runs done in Inferno Act 1, a Skeleton King run and a Warden/Butcher run. Let’s break these down.
Skeleton King Run
- Difficulty: Easy
- Time: ~25-40 m
- Loot Level: Low-Medium
In this run, most mobs are slow and not particularly lethal, making it a great starter run for people new to Inferno. If you can’t do it, it’s time for a gear check and you should either buy new gear or go back to do some Hell runs. Alright, here’s what you need to do. From the menu screen, select the Royal Crypts point in the Reign of the Black King quest. This waypoint takes us as close as we want to get to the Skeleton King. Fight your way to the Skeleton King’s door and kill every elite pack on the way that you can find. Usually there will be about 2-3 elite packs, although occasionally there will just be 1. DO NOT enter the Skeleton King’s door yet. in order to take full advantage of the Nephalem Valor mechanic you need to get 5 stacks before killing the Skeleton King. There are a number of places to look for elites to build up to 5 stacks but we recommend teleporting back home and waypointing to the Cemetary of the Forsaken first and hunting for elite packs. Go south to the Weeping Hollow and continue to look for elites. Once you get 5 stacks, go back through the waypoint and use the town portal to go back and face the Skeleton King. The fight with the Skeleton King is relatively easy and straightforward. Kill him and get your sick loot. Rinse and repeat until you have the gear necessary to progress.
Warden / Butcher Run
- Difficulty: Medium
- Time: ~25-35 m
- Loot Level: Medium
This run is by far the most common run in all of Inferno difficulty (pre patch 1.03). Why? Cause it’s relatively easy and offers two set bosses. This means that the loot level will be considerably better than the Skeleton King runs. Mobs are a bit harder, but once you can do Butcher runs without dying too much there’s almost no reason to ever do another Skeleton King run. First select the Cursed Hold portion of the quest. Fight through the dungeons and the Highlands Passage, killing all elites on the way. You’ll face the Warden after finding the Cursed Hold and freeing the prisoners. Make sure that you have 5 stacks of Nephalem Valor before facing him. I’ve faced anywhere between 3-7 elite packs before reaching the Warden portion of the quest. If you don’t get 5 stacks by the time you get to this portion, teleport back home and waypoint to your favorite farming spot and look for elites. After you have 5 stacks, face off against the Warden. This is a really easy fight and should be a cinch. Now move onto the Halls of Agony level 3 where you will search for the Chamber of Suffering and The Butcher. There will usually be at least one elite pack in the Halls of Agony level 3, so be sure to kill this to renew your Nephalem Valor. The Butcher is far more challenging than the Warden but is still one of the easiest act bosses. Rinse and repeat until you are ready for Act 2.
- Difficulty: Medium
- Time: 25-45 m
- Loot Level: High
Since 1.03 hit, this is one of the most popular Act 1 runs. People immediately began to start farming elites and this is by far the most efficient and lucrative run. With the change in 1.03 so that elite packs now guarantee a rare (w/five stacks), wasting five stacks of Nephalem Valor and repeating the run is simply not as efficient as pre-1.03. The video below highlights several areas that guarantee elites and have the highest elite density in Act 1. Act 1 is especially great, because there are relatively small areas with concentrated numbers of elites. These runs still normally culminate in the killing of the Warden and Butcher. The areas covered are:
- The Watchtower (1-5 elites)
- The Festering Woods (2-4 elites)
- Leoric’s Manor (and courtyard) (1-2 elites)
- Cemetery of the Forsaken (and the Defiled Crypts) (3-4 elites, sidequest)
- Halls of Agony (lvl 2, 3) (2-6 elites)
- Cursed Hold (1-5 elites, Warden)
- Highlands Passage
- Chamber of Suffering (Butcher)