Act 2 Farming Routes
Published by Anuiran on Oct 7, 2012
Written by Methrin
Note this is a community written guide by D3RMT member @Methrin. If you want your own guide or article spotlighted simply post it on the forums or send me a message directly. However not every community written piece will be accepted.
So you’re sick and tired of Act 1? Why not try Act 2 for a change? This guide will aim to provide you with a handful of viable options for farming routes. For simplicity’s sake we’ll cover the basics first and then the actual routes will be listed afterwards where we won’t explain everything again.
When you farm, you have 2 goals, get loot & gold and get some exp towards paragon levels to get better loot and more gold. As such, the best farming routes involve getting a 5 stack as quickly as possible to make sure the vast majority of the monsters you kill give you 75% more exp and the longest routes will try to feature as many good spots for exp as you can find.
What is a good exp spot? A spot where you can find a lot of monsters bunched up. Killing them all without pause gives you a massacre bonus which is nice, but negligible compared to how much exp a single monster gives. Exp spots are good because a lot of monsters is a lot of exp and even more so with a full stack of Nephalem Valor.
Black Canyon mines & friends: The first waypoint of the zone and funnily enough, one of the greatest spots to start a farming run in. Why is it so great? Because it’s a small map, the portion with the waypoint is static (meaning the layout is always the same, albeit dungeons are random) and it usually has a lot of packs.
- Howling plateau – That spot south of the waypoint & across the bridge, home to some packs and sometimes a dungeon.
- Deserted Cellar (Southwest) / Tunnels of the Rockworm – I mention this dungeon because it’s very short and it isn’t a detour. Keep in mind it’s a random spawn, meaning the deserted cellar doesn’t always spawn in the southwest corner and even when it does, it won’t necessarily be the right one.
The Desolate Sands: Not a big fan of this zone, it’s very big and monster density is not that great, but it does include 2-3 dungeons, I do it mostly for the dungeons.
- Vault of the Assassin: Great zone for farming, tons of packs. The only reason I don’t start my runs there is because you can waste 10 minutes trying to find the damn thing.
- Cave of the Betrayer: Not such a bad zone, but definitely much less attractive than Vault of the Assassin, you’ll most likely find it before the Vault so why not do it?
- The Vile Cavern: Another Cave of the Betrayer, basically.
- Cave of the Burrowing Horror: Big Worm tunnels that only spawn near the entrance of the Desolate Sands if my memory serves me well. Worth doing because it takes 2 secs to check if the worm is there.
- Fowl Lair & Veiled Treasure: 2 results of the Ancient Device... always activate the device because these 2 dungeons are basically free loot.
- Road to Alcarnus: This zone itself is useless (I don’t think packs spawn here) but it’s a short walk away from Alcarnus (a great little static zone) and the second half of stinging winds, I always pay these two a visit.
- Archives of Zoltun Kulle: The last three zones of the act (Realm of Shadow, the Unknown Depths and the Storm Halls), a personal favorite. Most monsters there are very stupid or easy to deal with (skeletons especially) and the layout of the maps are great for cover (i.e. those sand doorways block mortar projectiles). This was also one of my favorite spots to level in because it gives good exp, I never skip it for this reason.
- The Dalghur Oasis: This zone is static in its shape, but the content is very random, it has a respectable amount of packs, but nothing stellar considering how big the map is. If you visit it, make sure to swing by the forgotten ruins and whichever dungeon is there. I will admit I am no expert with this zone since I prefer the zones I discussed above and by the time I could go to the Oasis, I feel like doing something else than farming.
- The Aquedutcts & Sewers: I HATE the sewers and aqueducts because the embalmed monsters (the guys who explode in a cloud of poison gas) are ridiculously fast in inferno, if you’re well-geared or just not a wich doctor, wizard or Demon Hunter, these aren’t bad zones but otherwise be ready to get violated by the packs there.
A route if you’re still in the early stages of Act 2 or if you want a very short run with a boss.
- Quest: City of Blood – Begin Quest (if you want the big berserker in front of Alcarnus) or Lair of the Witch (if you don’t care about the big guy and just want the run done quickly)
- Go to the Black Canyon Mines;
- Clear the Canyon and go south to Howling Plateau and clear any dungeons there;
- Go north of Black Canyon Mines to clear the first part of stinging winds;
- Take the road to Alcarnus waypoint to go clear the second half of stinging winds;
- Go clear Alcarnus and kill Maghda
A good little route when you don’t have a lot of time or just want something short.
- Quest: The Black Soulstone – Soulstone Chamber
- Start at the Black Canyon Mines;
- Clear enough of the Black Canyon Mines and adjacent zones (see Beginner route) to get a 5 stack going;
- Go to the Desolate Sands and find the Vault of the Assassin and clear it;
- Kill Zoltun Kulle. Screw Belial, he takes too long to do.
The big ‘un
A fairly lengthy run if you’re in the mood to kill 2 bosses and a lot of packs.
- Quest: The Black Soulstone – Soulstone Chamber
- Do the same thing as the beginner run (without Killing Maghda obviously);
- Go pay a visit to Zoltun Kulle’s archives and clear the 3 zones and of course, kill Zoltun Kulle himself;
- Hit the Desolate Sands and hit both quest dungeons (Vault & Cave) but don’t waste time clearing the entirety of the Desolate Sands;
- Take the Path to the Oasis waypoint and clear your way up the oasis, clearing any dungeons along the way;
- Once at the top, either backtrack to clear the map or hit the Aqueducts (use your judgement to determine if it’s worth it);
- Go visit Caldeum and Belial.
You better have a spare hour or two to do this.
The final word
Adapt these runs to your playstyle, skip the parts you don’t like and most of all, don’t waste time on Belial if you can’t kill him fast. The scouring of Caldeum is a tremendous waste of time so unless you can kill Belial super fast, don’t bother.