In this new Path of Exile expansion, you are going to perform heists, I know who would’ve thought. You will break into guarded facilities trying not to fill an alarm meter, search for an artifact, and make an escape. To accomplish this you will need to employ one or more of the new 13 NPCs known as Rogues. Those Rogues have different skills (some of them overlapping), you’ll need to examine your Contract, Contract being a map like a pass into a heist, and determine which Rogue you’ll need. Some of them will only provide intel and others will help you on-site.
TL;DR: “If you just want regular Path of Exile items and don’t want to engage heavily in running Heists, it’s a viable strategy to simply begin the Heist, steal as much as you can until you reach the alert level cap and then make your escape.”
Heists lay the groundwork for Grand heists; they provide you with intel and marks. In regular heists you start by paying the marker fee for it and whichever Rogue you choose and while inside you need to steal an artifact to gain intel and make a marker profit. While in heists all the items drop as contraband, that means if you die or logout all the items are dropped, however, if you manage to leave the heist those items lose this marker and are yours to keep.
Actions such as killing guards, opening side passages and chests affect your alert meter, and stealing the artifact fill up the meter immediately. When the alert meter is filled you trigger an alarm. You’ll have a brief window to steal the artifact and open chests before complete lockdown.
While in lockdown you can’t steal anything else, you’ll be swarmed by an endless stream of guards (they stop providing Path of Exile currency, items, and experience after a certain amount) and you’ll have to make your escape. After the alarm has been triggered you can’t re-enter the heist anymore.
Regular heists are single instance while grand heists have multiple wings and provide you with league exclusive drops. You can gather as much or as little intel as you like, it can provide you with better loot, easier escape routes, and more.
So, what are the league exclusive drops? Firstly, Replica items here’s a few of them:
Shame we don’t get (16-24)% increased maximum Life too.
Not all of them useful, but could be used for a niche build.
A very powerful spin for Hierophants and Guardians. I wonder what crazy amounts of Energy Shield are people gonna get now. A pity retained no socket mod.
You get the idea, good old uniques with a spin on them. There’s 100 hundred of them. Oh, and I saved the best for last:
This is just crazy strong.
Next, we get experimental base types:
These are new base types with unique explicit modifiers.
You can also get gems with alternate quality versions, like those:
While 1% of damage leeched as life is very strong, the chance of returning projectiles is very weak because those projectiles don’t hone at you like with the spectral throw. Those gems are very hit and miss. They either make the gem very strong or make it weaker and before.
Rare items with enchants:
Pretty strong bonuses that don’t take up implicit slots. Some of the most powerful come with a setback.
Heist league also introduces a new item type: Trinkets.
They modify drops you get in heists and some of them can also modify drops in the game like that Increased Marker drop rate.