Hints, tips & tricks for Grim Dawn beginners (2023)

As you probably know, I am a huge ARPG fan, and my latest obsession has been Grim Dawn byCrate Entertainment. So far I’ve put in around 200 hours into the game and have levelledmultiple classes, during this time I’ve collected some helpful hints, tips and tricks thatmay be of use to beginners to the game.

If you want to try Grim Dawn for yourself, the game and DLCs are available on Steam.

Check out the build compendium for class combos and builds

It can be very daunting picking what class combo and build to play, luckily the Grim Dawn build Compendium has every class and build covered, whether you want to play a dual-wielding rogue, aspellcasting mage or an unstoppable tank the compendium will help you choose the right build for you.

Put components in your gear as you get them, don’t save them for later

As you level up, you will start collecting lots of components, these can be put onto armour and weaponsto add extra damage, armour, resistances or even new abilities. If you find a component, don’t be afraidto use it straight away, you can always take off a component using the inventor NPC.

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It’s best to keep yourextra components in your stash, some you will need to unlock devotion shrines, while others will be neededfor crafting gear and other higher level components.

Always activate every devotion shrine you find

On the world map you will see rough locations of devotion shrines and you’ll no doubtrun into these on your travels. Activate them whenever you can, you will need to supply either acomponent (that does not need to be on your inventory) or fight a boss or small wave of mobs. Once the shrineis cleared, you will have a devotion point available to spend in the devotions screen.

Be smart with your devotion points

Chose devotion points that will benefit your class/build. If you’re dealing fire damage thenit makes sense to put points into fire/burn constellations.

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If you find yourself dying a lot, it maymake sense to put points into more defensive constellations, this is a good way of getting your resistancesup, too.

Don’t spread your attributes too thin

Each time you level up you can put a point into either your physique, cunning or spirit. It may betempting to spread your points around, but don’t do this! Unless your build specifically requiresotherwise you should put most of your points into physique.

Physique all the way (mostly)

Just to reiterate, you will almost certainly want to put most, if not all points into physique, youcannot re-assign your attribute points until much later into the game!

Don’t be afraid to explore and uncover the map

Grim Dawn is full of secrets to uncover that require lots of exploring, sometimes you will findtreasure hidden in a tree stump or under a rock, sometimes you’ll find secret rooms hidden behinddestructible walls. It pays to explore and click on everything in this game!

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Choose an ability to base your build around

Choose an ability in your class you really like, for example Righteous Fervor or Cadence and buildyour character around it, put as many points into that ability as you can and gear to complementthe damage type of your main ability, for example if you’re using Righteous Fervor then you willprobably want burn damage on your gear. Note that certain abilities have passive skills which modifythe damage type into another, for example, ‘Dreeg’s Reproach’ converts the physical and fire damage ofRighteous Fervor into Acid and Vitality damage respectively.

Focus on one or two abilities

It’s tempting to put a point into every ability in the class tree and spread your points around, althoughyou should avoid doing this, instead focus on one or two key abilities and put as many points into themas you can.

Level more than one character

In every RPG I play I always like to level alt characters, the same goes for Grim Dawn, I find if Ifarm for gear on my main, I always have gear I can funnel down to my lower level characters, making thelevelling process much easier the second, third or fourth time round. It’s also fun to find out which class/build is more overpowered or easier to play. Click here for a list of my Grim Dawn characters.

Kill every champion/named mob you find

Champions are powerful named mobs marked with a star, while they are much tougher to defeat than normalmobs, they can drop epic and legendary (after level 50) loot, as well as a good amount of XP and factionreputation.

Loot as much as you can and sell the stuff you don’t need

You’ll need currency (iron bits) to craft and buy items, a good way to earn iron is carry as muchjunk as you can and vendor it back at town, you’ll want to do every quest you can to ensure you unlockyour extra inventory bags along the way.

Learn any plans you loot

There are lots of crafting plans to loot from bosses and shrines, as well as plans that can be boughtfrom faction vendors. Once you’ve learned a crafting plan on one character, the ability to craft thatitem is unlocked for all your characters - no need to farm the same plans over and over!

Don’t be afraid to play on normal difficulty

This will be up to you, but I prefer to kill stuff quickly, the way I see it any loss in experience is madeup for in speed, but if you want to play with veteran turned on go for it.

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Mobs will have much more healthbut reward you with increased XP per kill.

If all else fails, try respeccing!

All is not lost if you think you’ve truly bricked your character. An NPC can reset your devotions andskill points for a fee. Each time you do this the price increases.

Build around a damage type

Have an idea in your head what kind of damage you want to be doing as your chosen class, for example onmy tank Warlord character, I deal physical and internal trauma damage while on my Pyromancer I deal fireand chaos damage. Choose a damage type that gels well with your chosen offensive abilities.

DPS score doesn’t matter (that much)

On the character sheet (by pressing ‘c’) there is a value for your character’s DPS. This is calculatedfrom your main (left-click) ability and any damage bonuses on your gear.

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While this goes some way toshowing how powerful you are, don’t worry too much about it, the DPS value will vary wildly from characterto character.

Resistances are everything!

This is perhaps the most important thing to remember about this game, especially if you find yourselfdying a lot - resistances matter hugely! Capping your resistances to at least 80% is essential to survivingout in the world of Cairn, especially in higher difficulties!

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You will be able to increase your resistancesthree ways - by equipping gear with resistance stats, using components with resists on your gear and choosingresistive devotions. You’ll find some boss fights are impossible without specific resistances which vary fromfight to fight, at end-game you should be aiming for that magic 80% value across all resistances.

Look for hidden NPCs

As I mentioned earlier, explore the map! You will sometimes run into NPCs you can interact with offeringXP or rewards for rescuing them.

Pick up and keep the dynamite

From act 2 onwards, you will begin collecting dynamite, it’s a good idea to carry some in your inventoryat all times, as you will need dynamite to clear certain passageways or blow open loot chests! Good placesto farm dynamite are the mines in act 2 (Arkovian foothills) and Cronley’s hideout.

Save blues and purples for alts

Grim Dawn has epic (blue) and legendary (purple) items that are the best quality items in the game, as youkill mobs you will no doubt begin to collect some of these and I recommend keeping as many as you can in yourstash for alt characters, alternatively you can just sell these items if you’re sure you won’t need them.

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Use the inventor to salvage gear and components

Once you’ve rescued Darlet in act 1, you have her available to remove components from your gear. You have eitherthe option of keeping the piece of gear or the component, like I said earlier, don’t be afraid to putcomponents on your gear as soon as possible!

Check the blacksmith for better components and gear

Some components can only be crafted and can’t be found in the world, so check in with the blacksmith andsee what components you can craft.

Pick a second class at level 10

At level 10 you can choose a second class to spec into, it may be tempting to stick with the single class, butyou’d be hindering yourself if you did, the best builds make use of two classes, you can always check thebuild compendium for class combinations that work well together.

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A dead character does zero DPS

I made the mistake of prioritising my OA (offensive ability) and putting all my points into cunningon my first character, this was a huge mistake as I wasn’t alive long enough to actually do any damage! Rememberthat your character does zero DPS while dead, so put your points into physique, use defensive cooldowns, weararmour with higher defensive ability and of course get your resistances up!

That’s all I think for now, I’ve been having so much fun with Grim Dawn, it’s quickly becoming my favouriteARPG, definitely up there with Diablo 3 and Wolcen. Anyway, thanks for reading, I hope this was helpful, pleasefeel free to follow me on Twitter and Instagram!


How do you get better gear in Grim Dawn? ›

How I Farm Gear On A Fresh Account - Grim Dawn - YouTube

What is the strongest Grim Dawn build? ›

Best Grim Dawn Build To Dominate The Game
  • Lightning Build.
  • Ritualist.
  • Soldier.
  • Death Knight.
  • Dervish.
  • Warder.
  • Inquisitor.
  • Conjurer.
May 28, 2021

How do I survive in Grim Dawn? ›

5 quick tips and tricks for Hardcore Grim Dawn in 2021 - YouTube

What does MI mean in Grim Dawn? ›

Monster infrequents (MIs) are Rare-quality items that only some specific types of creatures and bosses can drop. Monster infrequents have unique names and art, and they also come with some fixed, guaranteed stats in addition to random affixes.

How do you get legendary items in Grim Dawn? ›

Most Unique items can drop randomly as loot anywhere from monsters or chests; one-shot chests in particular contain a guaranteed random Epic item. Some can also be crafted after finding the appropriate blueprint. The following Blacksmiths will also craft random Legendary items for the appropriate cost.

What is a double rare Grim Dawn? ›

An item that generates both a rare prefix and a rare suffix is considered a double rare. Double rare items have the potential to be some of the most powerful in the game.

What is the best class to play in Grim Dawn? ›

I say it's Conjurer (Shaman/Occultist). The class offers at least four distinct play styles (Caster, Summoner, 2H-Melee, and 2H-Ranged). All of them can beat Ultimate without too much trouble. For the endgame, many builds have been posted for the first three.

What class should I play in Grim Dawn? ›

What are the best classes for Grim Dawn in 2020?
  • Battlemage. A Battlemage dispatches some Cthonians with Olexra's Flash Freeze. ...
  • Druid. A Druid faces off against a group of hero and boss enemies in the Crucible. ...
  • Ritualist. A Ritualist faces off against Aetherial undead. ...
  • Dervish. ...
  • Vindicator. ...
  • Warlord. ...
  • Infiltrator. ...
  • Sorcerer.
Jan 21, 2021

Is Shaman good in Grim Dawn? ›

Shaman is a mastery in Grim Dawn. Shamans are capable of particularly brutal strength and focus on two-handed melee weapons, combining their strength with the power of lightning storms. They are also capable of summoning savage beasts.

How do you build grim? ›

Build Creation Guidelines - Grim Dawn Basics Ep. 8 - YouTube

How do you level up in Grim Dawn? ›

One good thing about Grim Dawn is that you have a chance to re-assign your skill points. This means that if you want to level up fast, you can first build your character for speed leveling early in the game, and then re-assign your skills later.

What is Grim Dawn crucible? ›

The Crucible is a Downloadable Content (DLC) that introduces a challenging new arena gameplay mode to Grim Dawn. The Crucible was conceived as a stretch goal during Crate's successful Kickstarter campaign.

How many shards are there in shattered realm? ›

two shards

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