First and foremost it is critical that newer players understand how vital flasks are in Path of Exile. They are, aside from build-enabling items, probably the most important part of your entire gear-set. If you get it right, they can multiply both your tankiness and your damage tenfold.
Many players often forego their flasks until very late stages in the game or they never actually get them fixed altogether. While this was understandable to an extent before the launch of 3.2 Bestiary League and after the simplifying of Beastcrafting in 3.5 Betrayal League there really is no reason not to quickly fix your flasks whenever you’re entering maps or even during leveling if you’re someone who enjoys doing side-projects during your story progression/leveling.
Worry not, though! In this guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about flask crafting. This is an excellent starting point to better understand the crafting systems as a whole, as crafting flasks is a simplified and incredibly cheap version of normal crafting, and it is also a great starting point to improve your character yourself.
A Quick Word on flasks
Flasks and flask usage are an important part of building a character, but they are often overlooked by less experienced players. A lot of newer players also seem to find “flasking” in Path of Exile rather tedious, but once you get the hang of it, it starts to feel like second nature!
Flasks refill themselves when you kill monsters (or through unique ways such as Pathfinder’s Ascendancy Notables) which makes them very repetitively usable. This means that you can build a character around having a certain flask active at all times. This constitutes an additional layer of protection, damage, or utility, and it is being able to combine a lot of different such layers that allows players to create extremely powerful synergies.
While players generally think about Life or Mana recovery when they talk about flasks, Path of Exile offers vastly different effects on their flasks than just these two. This also gives a player options. If your character prefers suppressing spells, you should probably run a Quartz Flask. If it would rather just take the hit and mitigate it, maybe a Granite Flask is more of your thing.
In this guide, we will not make any recommendations whatsoever about which flasks you should use. All of our build guides have a flask section that goes over the best flasks for that build, and we recommend that you use that for guidance instead.
Affixes & Duration
These mentioned flasks have certain affixes (modifiers) which cannot (conveniently) be found on other pieces of gear. While a flask can have 2 affixes (one prefix and one suffix), we are generally mostly looking for the suffix modifiers. The most commonly used suffixes are Staunching (Bleed Immunity), Of the Walrus (Freeze Immunity)_, _ Of the Owl_ (Curse Effect Reduction)_, Of the Owl (Shock Immunity), and Starfish (Ignite Immunity), in order of importance.
Next up, it is important to understand how the functionality of utility flasks differs from Life or Mana flasks. A Life or a Mana Flaks is only activatable when you are not full on Life or Mana (depending on the flask). It only starts running if it can regenerate Life or Mana, and it also deactivates once the concerned resource fills up. This means that on these flasks, we generally want to use suffixes which you want to use reactively. A good example is a Life flask of Staunching, as you can activate this as soon as you are taking some sort of Bleed Damage.
Utility flasks, on the other hand, have a set in stone duration and no other requirements to fullfil. This means that you can use them preemptively. They’ve recently been changed another time, reintroducing their immunity parts but making them harder to sustain or have uptime on. Therefore, crafting Flasks can be an extremely tedious and expensive endeavour. It might be worth settling for a lower tier modifier and just trying to not be overzealous with using them.
TL;DR flask Crafting
Crafting an Early set of flasks in League-Start Environments
- If your flask is not a Life flask, you don’t care about the prefix. If it is, you generally want to look for a Bubbling or Seething prefix as it makes (a part of) the Life you recover instant, which is vastly more powerful than recovering it over time (as this allows you to react to damage better).
- Find the correct base item to craft (ensure it has the right item level to roll the affixes you want; see PoE Affix).
- Use an Orb of Transmutation to make your flask Magic rarity. From this point onward, you want to stop whenever you just have a prefix roll on your flask. This is easily checked for by looking at the name of your flask. If the variable part is only in front of your flask, you stop (e.g. Ample Quartz flask). If it has both a prefix and a suffix (e.g. Ample Quartz flask of Dousing) or just a suffix (e.g. Quartz flask of Dousing move to the next step.
- Use Orb of Alteration to get a flask with only a prefix modifier. Make sure to check every single time!
- Go to your Menagerie and put the flask in the Menagerie’s Blood Altar and select the required suffix to put on your flask.
- Slay the monsters that pop up and take your flask from the ground. Congratulations! You now have the desired suffix on your flask.
Crafting Perfect flasks Once you Have the Resources
- Identify the desired outcome (acceptable prefix + suffix combination). For example, Seething Divine Life flask of Staunching.
- Find the correct base item to craft (ensure it has the right item level to roll the affixes you want; see PoE Affix).
- Use Glassblower's Baubles to get the flask to 20% quality (ideally while the flask is Normal).
- Use an Orb of Transmutation to make the flask Magic. From this point on, be sure to check if the flask has the correct prefix + suffix, and if yes, then stop.
- Use an Orb of Alteration on the item if the prefix or suffix are incorrect. Repeat this step until one of the following happens
- the flask has both correct prefix + suffix; if so, then stop.
- the flask has the correct prefix and no suffix; if so then go to step 6.
- When the flask has the correct prefix and no suffix, you should do one of the following
- go to your Menagerie and Beastcraft the desired suffix onto the flask
- use an Orb of Augmentation on the flask to add a suffix; if the suffix is incorrect, return to step 5.
Step 1: flask Base
The first thing you will have to do is identify the flask you want to craft. For the purpose of this guide, we will pretend we want to craft a Seething Divine Life flask of Staunching. This is generally an excellent flask to have, since it provides instant health (the Seething prefix) and immunity to bleed effects (the Staunching suffix). Again, this is just an example, and you could use any number of useful suffixes, like Freeze, Ignite, or Curse immunity. See the specific build guide in question for flask recommendations.
Once you have chosen the flask you want to craft, you will have to acquire a base. In this case, a simple Divine Life flask is what you need. At this point, it is very important to check the flask’s item level (by holding ALT while hovering over it). You must ensure that the item level of the base is high enough for the affixes you want on it to be eligible to roll. Use a website like PoE Affix to check this.
As you can see from the screenshot above, the flask will need to be at least item level 7 to be able to roll Seething, and at least 8 to be able to roll Staunching.
Once you have your correct base, you can move on to the next step.
Step 2: flask Quality
Like many other items in the game (gems, armor, maps), flasks also have “quality”. This is increased by using Glassblower's Baubles on a flask. Each Glassblower’s Bauble increases the quality of a Normal (white) flask by 5%, a Magic or Rare (blue or yellow) one by 2%, and a Unique one by 1%.
Quality increases the amount of Life and Mana restored for flasks that have this property, while for all other flasks (Quicksilver flasks, Diamond flasks), the duration of the effect is increased.
This guide is not concerned with Unique flasks (which cannot be “crafted” as such). Therefore, we can say that as a rule you should always increase a Normal flask’s quality to 20% using Glassblower's Baubles before you start crafting it. This is simply the most efficient use of the Glassblower’s Baubles, since it only costs 4 Baubles to bring the flask from 0 to 20% quality. If the flask is already Magic (and the exceptions below do not apply), then you can use an Orb of Scouring on it to make it Normal and then increase its quality.
- Exception #1: if for some reason you end up with a perfectly rolled flask (correct affixes; see below), it most likely is more economical to use more Baubles to increase its quality than to use an Orb of Scouring and start all over again.
- Exception #2: early on in the league (while still leveling up), you may lack the required Glassblower’s Baubles to do this. In such a case, it is perfectly acceptable to roll a low/no quality flask.
A final note here, for completion’s sake, is that Hillock in the Research safehouse upgrades a flask’s quality to above 20%, depending on his rank, as follows:
- Rank 1: 22%
- Rank 2: 24%
- Rank 3: 26%
Step 3: Rolling prefix + suffix
Each flask can have one prefix and one suffix. In the example above (the Seething Divine Life flask of Staunching), the prefix is Seething and the Assuaging is the suffix (as Staunching got renamed).
The process is quite simple.
The first step is to make the flask Magic using an Orb of Transmutation. If it already is a Magic flask, you can skip this step altogether. There is an extremely small chance that this will result in your desired combination of prefix and suffix, in which case you are done.
Most likely, however, your flask will only roll with one affix, or with two affixes of which at least one is not desirable.
- If the flask only has a prefix, and it is desirable, you have two options
- use Beastcrafting to add the desired suffix.
- use an Orb of Augmentation on the flask in the hope of getting the desired suffix.
- If the flask has only a suffix, and it is desirable, use an Orb of Augmentation to attempt to get a desirable prefix.
- If you have two affixes of which at least one is not desirable, use an Orb of Alteration to roll the affixes and start over again.
You will continue this process until you end up with both desirable affixes. It is important to note that in the case of most builds, there is some amount of flexibility in the affix combinations for your flasks. This means that, most likely, you will want a flask that has one of a few desirable prefixes and one of a few desirable suffixes. This means that it is somewhat easier to make a good flask than if you were looking for that one specific combination, but it also means you need to keep mental track of more affixes.
Harvest Flask modifiers
With the introduction, removal and re-introduction of Harvest League we expect the mechanic to be in the game permanently. Therefore, we think this section does warrant a section dedicated to the potential modifiers Harvest Crafting can add to your Flasks.
Harvest Crafts are a bit special in a sense that they introduce a variety of modifiers that is only temporary and gets less effective over time. Their crafts give you a tremendously powerful effect which decays every single time you use the Flask, to the point where it disappears and you have to re-enchant your Flask in Harvest’s Sacred Grove. The modifiers that can exist are the following :
- 50% reduced Charges used. -1% to this value when used
- 100% increased Duration. -1% to this value when used
- 50% increased effect. -1% to this value when used
*+100 to Maximum Charges. -1 to this value when used
Instilling and Enkindling Orbs
Through the years people have complained an awful lot about them being fed up with having to press their Flasks every couple of seconds. Path of Exile has since them implemented the Instilling Orb.
This orb effectively adds an extra modifier to your Flask which makes the use automated. There’s a very big variety of things you can get on them. A couple of examples would be “Use when you start bleeding”, “Use when you are Frozen”, “Use when Adjacent Flask is used” or “Use when Full”. This means that with a correct setup, you never have to press your Flasks again and they will be completely automated.
Other then the Instilling Orb, Enkindling Orb come with up and downsides. The Enkindling orb greatly buffs your Flask but it always comes at a tremendous cost. They can, for example, no longer gain charges while they are active, effectively meaning you can no longer have permanent uptime. They could also scale their effect pretty hard by doubling their duration for example of almost doubling their effect.
These modifiers are generally used while bossing or when using the insanely powerful unique item Mageblood.