Path of Exile: The Forbidden Sanctum Q&A Recap

Hot off the heels of the reveal stream, we’ve got the Q&A for The Forbidden Sanctum! Here’s the recap of questions and answers (paraphrased) that give us new information:

Images scattered throughout this article are artsy stills from the trailer, which (alongside the full stream recap) you can find here.

Additionally, the full patch notes have been posted. You can read them here.

Yes, I couldn’t resist that image for the article thumbnail.

sanctum door opens

How do you gain access to The Forbidden Sanctum?

Every area you play in has a portal that takes you to the Sanctum. Each portal takes you to one room. Each floor has eight rooms. There are four floors, and each floor has one boss. So, 32 rooms, 4 floors, 4 bosses.

Is there any chance someone really good could complete a full run on their first try?

In order to get really deep into the Sanctum, you need to know how it works, have relics, and get a decent assortment of useful boons. While not impossible, it is very unlikely someone will complete a full run on their first go.

sanctum fire boss

Why do we need Resolve?

POE’s player life fluctuates too much to be able to use it as a resource and there’s too many varied builds to create a health-based system that works for everyone. Resolve is basically a ‘second health bar’ that is much more controllable. It is basically build-agnostic and hardcorde-compatible.

Resolve seems to reward high-mobility playstyles. How does it feel playing a low-mobility playstyle?

We’ve thought of that. As melee, you take less Resolve damage if you’re closer to the enemies, to counteract the different type of mobility. You can also spec your relics into Resolve recovery. There’s relics that help you specialize in lots of different ways in order to manage your Resolve better.

sanctum blood boss

Sanctified Relics, do they work outside the Sanctum?

Yes. They’re pretty endgame, so they’re not necessarily easy to find, but their effects will affect your character outside of the Sanctum.

How does the Sanctum work in a party?

  • The Sanctum is always the map owner’s one. The map owner makes the choices.
  • The currency, relics, and Resolve bar are shared, and are overall owned by the map owner.
  • Party members dying doesn’t end your run.

When your Resolve reaches zero:

  • You can’t be damaged.
  • Monsters deal no damage.
  • Basically, you can’t, or rather shouldn’t, die when your Resolve runs out.
  • You don’t lose experience when you “Resolve die”.
sanctum kobold boss

Can we save Sanctum runs for later?

No. They’re not particularly long encounters, but they can’t be saved for later.

What’s the Sanctum layout?

  • First, you enter the Antechamber, where you pick the room you want to go in.
  • Then, you’re in the ‘arena’, where you kill things.
  • Then, you enter the reward room!

Do totems/minions taking damage, or self-inflicted damage, affect Resolve?


sanctum abyss trap

Are there any passives that remain on the Atlas Tree for bosses?

Uber nodes are still there, if you want to play the Uber version of a pinnacle boss. The passive that adds an extra Guardian to a Guardian boss fight is gone for now, for example, but these sort of passives are planned to return in some form in the future.

How do you feel about the loot conversion system overall?

We’ve reviewed the loot conversions and added some new ones, dropped some old ones (like dropping piles of flasks). A monster has as many chances of dropping bonus loot / having a loot conversion mechanic that is equal to the number of mods on it.

How will Headhunter work with the new monster mods?

There are way more mods now, and that means players get more mods! Having said that, these mods do less than the old Archnemesis mods, so you get more mods, but the mods are less powerful.

sanctum two-for-one boss

Are Divine shards going to be a thing?

They’re called Chaos orbs. Shards have a problem. Overall, we want to make sure currency items have fluctuating values with regards with each other. Adding a granular proportion to Divine Orbs would bring POE closer to having ‘gold’, which is a currency they want to avoid.

Is there any word on Ultimatum?

Ultimatum is split into two pieces. The boss and its unique drops is back in the game. We have a plan for the Ultimatum mechanic, and it’s not due yet. Having said that, the offer/deferral system in the Sanctum is similar to the Ultimatum mechanic, so players who enjoyed Ultimatum might enjoy this one.

sanctum juicy beautiful chest

How does quantity and rarity affect the Sanctum?

Your map mods do not affect the Sanctum. Quantity and rarity on your character will affect the drops of the monsters in the Sanctum.

How endgame is the new mechanic?

It kicks in right at the beginning, on The Coast.

sanctum laser beam avenue

Will the buffed Unique Weapons’ old versions in Standard be able to be buffed with a Divine Orb?


Is Reforge keep suffixes/prefixes from Harvest coming back?

No, sorry.

sanctum dark hallway

That’s all for today folks! I hope the announcement has managed to hype you back into playing Path of Exile. What are you most excited about? Let us know in the comments below!