Efficient Leveling Guide Updated
Portions of the previous Efficient Leveling Guide were rendered obsolete with the introduction of the Tamriel One update. Prior to Tamriel One, the individual zones had a fixed level and efficient leveling relied on fighting and questing above your character’s actual level. So, for example, rather than fight Molag Bal at level 50, you tried to get him done by level 45.
Tamriel One changed all this. All of the zones, quests, and mobs now battle level to CP160, so the consideration of your character’s level and the zone level are no longer applicable. Additionally, there are no longer any minimum character levels for any quests, although there may be some other minimum requirement. This gives you much more flexibility in what you choose to do for leveling. However, even though your character and the mobs are battle leveled to CP160, the experience you gain is based on your character’s level. As your level increases, you earn more experience for any given quest or kill.
Rather than gearing this guide to experienced players or even players on PC, this guide will assume that you are brand new to the Elder Scrolls Online and that you are playing on Xbox One or PS4. PC users get the benefit of addons and a more communications friendly interface, but the console requires some additional considerations. However, the basic method will apply to all players on any platform.
Table of Content
- Communication for Success
- Getting Information
- Getting Started
COMMUNICATING FOR SUCCESS
While the consoles do offer a built-in voice chat function, it is really only useful for running group content or for guild members. Being new to the game, the only voice chat you have access to will be the open zone chat, which is mostly useless. Typing on a console controller is a painful process, so you might find yourself isolated and unable to communicate efficiently.
The answer to this is the keyboard! That’s right, a lot of console gamers don’t realize it, but the Xbox One and PS4 support the use of an external USB keyboard. You can get an inexpensive PC-style (not Mac) USB keyboard, plug it into one of the USB ports, and type quickly and efficiently to communicate with other players. I recommend a keyboard with LED backlighting on the keys, so they are easier to see in a darkened or dimly lit room. Note that the console may not provide sufficient USB current to illuminate the backlighting, so you can use a powered USB hub to provide the additional current required for backlighting.
One of the biggest benefits of playing on the PC is the availability of addons, which can provide critical in-game information concerning the locations of skyshards, lorebooks, undiscovered locations, etc. As a console player, you are going to have to rely on the internet to get the information you need. For best results, access these web pages on a nearby PC or laptop.
This series of pages shows you detailed information about all quests in the game. The really important information is knowing the quest classification (Story Quests or Side Quests) and the location(s) of the quest giver(s). Sometimes the next quest giver in the Story Quest is nowhere near the turn-in from the previous quest, so this will help prevent you from wandering around looking for the new quest marker.
This interactive page shows the locations of all skyshards in each zone. The skyshards are identified by their order (as listed in your achievements) and the location hint from the achievements. Simply choose which zone you are in, check your achievements to see which skyshards you need, then follow the map.
This is another interactive page that shows the locations for all bosses and skyshards in each of the Public Dungeons.
This interactive map system is an excellent source of information about locations of everything from treasure chests and lorebooks to quest hubs and dolmens. Left click the mouse to select a zone. Zoom in quite close to see all the details. Right click to back out one map level.
This page allows you to see the bonuses for dropped and crafted armor/weapon/jewelry sets. This can help you plan which gear to get and where to get it from.
This page shows every reagent in the game and all four of its attributes. This makes it really easy to create potions or poisons of any type. Simply combine a solvent (potions) or oil (poisons) with two or three reagents that share attributes.
While it isn’t necessary, subscribing does a couple of important things.
First, it gives you 10% additional experience and 10% additional gold. Further, you will get 10% more inspiration (experience in crafting) and can research items 10% faster. You will level faster, have more gold to spend, and will get the Master Crafter status faster. Prices on the console are pretty high, about twice what they are on the PC, so you will need all the gold you can get.
Second, it gives you access to all the DLC without having to purchase them individually or get the gold version of the game. You also get crowns to the tune of 1500 per month of subscription, given to you all at once if you sub for more than a month at a time.
Third, and most importantly, it gives you access to the Crafter’s Bag. Even if you won’t be doing any crafting at all, the bag allows you to accumulate the materials you will need to provide a crafter to make equipment or consumables for you. For example, to make CP160 gear, you will need most of 5 stacks of basic material, plus all the style and improvement mats, etc. There is no way you can afford enough bank space to hold all the mats you will need, especially if you are planning on being a crafter yourself.
After creating your character, you will be sent to the Wailing Prison, unless you’ve done it before on your account (even if you no longer have the character that did it). Once you clear the Wailing Prison, you will find yourself in the hold of a ship or in a room at one of the beginner zones (Stros M’Kai, Kenarthi’s Roost, or Bleakrock Isle). While you can adventure here and get good experience, none of the quests are required to advance the story and none of them will reward any skill points.
To get started questing where it matters, exit the ship/room and head for the nearest wayshrine, then port to the wayshrine in your first main zone (Glenumbra, Auridon, or Stonefalls). Locate the first quest giver and start following the quest line. This will give you good experience, good equipment drops, and the all important skill points.
However, feel free to do anything you want in any zone. Doing nothing but questing can get boring, so explore, do delves, dolmens, and public dungeons. Do some side quests if you want. You will always be getting the maximum possible experience for a given quest and there is more than enough content to allow you to level doing anything you like!
As a new player to the game, you likely don’t know any Master Crafters that can help you craft set piece armor and weapons. Set pieces give extra bonuses, depending on how many items of that set are worn, up to 5. Instead, you will need to use the armor and weapons that get dropped from enemies or that are given as a quest award.
However, you can get “overworld” dropped set pieces in each zone by killing different bosses in delves and public dungeons and by clearing the dolmens, which give jewelry pieces. You may need to farm the dungeons and dolmens a bit to get a full set, but it can be done in a reasonable amount of time. Additionally, some of the quests award unique items that belong to one of the sets found in that zone. For example, completing the Rites of the Queen quest in Auridon gives an Eaglebanner Longbow, which is part of the Twin Sisters set found in Auridon.
You can get the various items from the following sources:
* Overworld group bosses can drop waist or feet armor pieces
* Delve bosses can drop head, chest, legs, or weapon pieces
* Public dungeon bosses can drop shoulders, hands, or weapon pieces
* Dolmen treasure chests always drop jewelry pieces
* Treasure chests found using a treasure map always drop a randomly slected piece
* Treasure chests found at random can drop a randomly selected piece
All dropped pieces are leveled to your level, so you can easily “upgrade” your items by refarming the bosses and dolmens in the zone. Review the available sets and find one or two that will enhance your character’s capabilities, then go get them.
You will need good food or drink to give your attributes and/or recovery a boost. Assuming you don’t have anyone you can rely on to make food for you, your best option is to go to Wrothgar and get the four Orzorga’s recipes. Orzorga (the quest giver) can be found on a small platform in the structure north of the Shatul Wayshrine.
The quests she gives are very simply and easily done. In addition to experience and gold, she will reward you with one of her recipes. These recipes consist of three blue quality recipes that all give a boost to Health for two hours, but also add a boost to health, magicka, or stamina recovery. The fourth recipe is gold quality, which boosts health and recovery for all three attributes, but it is difficult and expensive to make, so stick to the blue recipes. There are several things that make these desirable and useful for leveling.
First, they are listed as level 1, but battle level to your character level each time you consume the food or drink. Therefore the amount of health and recovery increase you get at level 45 will be much more than you get at level 15.
Second, they are listed as level 1, which means that you don’t need to put any skill points into the Recipe Improvement passive to make them. However, since they are blue quality, you will need to level your provisioning to 10 and then put a single skill point into the Recipe Quality passive, so you can make blue quality recipes.
Note that the Witches Festival introduced a battle leveled purple quality food that gives a health boost, a magicka boost, and a boost to magicka recovery. Similarly, the Jester’s Festival introduced a purple food that does the same, substituting the magicka and magicka recovery boosts for stamina and stamina recovery. These are good, but you must be provisioning level 35 to make purple quality food, so not as practical as the Orzorga’s recipes.
As for potions, you can just rely on the generica health, magicka, and stamina potions that the mobs drop. You will be leveling pretty quickly, so will want to constantly replace the older versions with newer, higher level versions.
As mentioned above, you will need to level your provisioning to level 10 in order to make the Orzorga’s food. This is actually quite easy to do, provided you can get the raw materials and recipes.
The recipes are the easy part. Simply go to any Brewer or Chef and you will that they offer a series of recipes at your Recipe Improvement level. Simply purchase and use the recipes to learn them.
Additionally, you can get free recipes by doing the daily provisioning crafting writ. You can start this right away. The quest giver will be found in the Mage’s Guild in your starting city. In fact, the recipes you can purchase from the Chef or Brewer are the very ones you will need to know to complete the writ quests. Each writ quest reward container contains a recipe appropriate the level of the quest. It is usually green quality, but can be blue or even purple quality.
The raw materials are going to take a bit of work to accumulate, however. Since everything in town is owned, you can no longer loot barrels, crates, and sacks in public areas with impunity. You could steal materials and then launder them, but there is a very low limit to the number you can launder each day. Fortunately, there are some good places where you can loot the containers to get the materials you need.
First, the containers in delves and dungeons are not owned, so you can loot them endlessly. It takes me a long time to clear most delves because I’m looting every container I come across. Note that each player sees independent loot in the same container, so I can loot a box and get Ginger and you could then loot the same box and get Rye.
Second, whenever you are in the presence of enemies, the nearby containers are most likely not owned, even if they would be otherwise. For example, when are in Daggerfall Castle while doing the Bloodthorn Assassins quest, all the containers in the castle are unowned, allowing you to loot them. However, once you finish the quest and leave the castle, the containers revert back to being owned, so loot everything before you leave.
Finally, all the containers in the Hollow City in Coldharbour are unowned and can therefore be looted. However, it can be difficult to get to the Hollow City unless you can port to someone you know. Ask in zone if someone can give you a ride to the Hollow City and you might have some luck.
If you want to speed level provisioning to the maximum level, you will need to start with an available pool of 5 skill points to increase your Recipe Improvement passive each time a new one is unlocked. Each time you increase your Recipe Improvement passive, you can make higher level recipes. By making the highest level recipe, you will level fastest with the least cost in raw materials.
Leveling alchemy is actually easier than leveling provisioning because you do not need to know any recipes! As long as you have the right combination of ingredients, you can make any potion. Use the poison making link above as a reference.
To make a potion, simply combine the proper solvent and two ingredients that share an attribute with each other. Again, the hard part is getting the raw materials because they are not very common in the game. Start farming alchemy nodes from day one if you want to accumulate a good store of raw materials.
If you want to speed level alchemy, you should start with a pool of 7 available skill points to increase the Solvent Proficiency passive each time a new level is unlocked. As with provisioning, you will want to make the highest level potions to get the leveling with the least cost in raw materials.
LEVELING OTHER CRAFTING SKILLS
The other skills are most easily leveled by deconstructing items of that type. Get into the habit of deconstructing any dropped item that is green, blue, or purple, unless you want to use the item, and any that have the Intricate trait. It will take a while to level, especially Enchanting, but you end up with both the leveling and the raw materials from deconstructing the item. Sell any item that has the Ornate trait, then either sell or deconstruct non-trait, white quality items, except glyphs. Always deconstruct all glyphs.
Even if you don’t plan on crafting, it is a good idea to level the equipment and enchanting skill lines as your level is one of the determining factors in the level of raw materials you find in the game.
Leveling used to be somewhat complicated when the game was first released, but the introduction of Tamriel One makes it much simpler. However, while it is simpler, there are still tricks and tips that can make it more efficient. Hopefully this guide has helped with your understanding of the game and how the leveling system works. Now, get out there and have some fun!