Lately i have levelled up alot of Chars so i thought i might aswell share my ways of running through the Campaign. Wall of text incoming!
If you only need a quick reminder where to do what quests in which order check Alternalos quick guide:
This ones here is alot longer and more picked with little things from my experience and aimed primarily at new players.
If you play your first char there is not much preparation to be done. I would suggest though to precreate a Char for the three factions (Hunter,Templar, Cabalist) and run them quickly to Holborn before creating your main Char. That way you can send all the nice items that you find on your journey directly to a Mule that can use it and you know where to find stuff later. If you want, even do one for Mods. It save you alot of time in the long run. The alternative is to send your excess items that you want to keep but dont have space via Mail to yourself. But that will clutter your inbox with unsorted items. And the longer your inbox gets the higher the chances are you get bugged emails an lose items. So allways keep it clean and delete your empty mails.
Also spare all your money till Charing Cross! I explain later.
If you already have other chars, get your new one some items beforehand. Either from your mules or buy them some cheap stuff from the AH. And there the most important things are Movement Speed and AOE. So get them some early movement speed Boots and some AOE weapons.
Also spend them some scrap materials so you can grab the good early shit from the Crafters in the Stations. Maybe a dykit you have flying around (at best a Jade one for 20% Movement speed) or a low level Trinket or early +1 Helmet you have. I personally send him alot of stuff from my Mules even for later levels. Also if you already played through once send your new Char the items for the piecemaker that you have left over and kept from the Aldgate Quest.
As said when speed/smoothrunning there are two things that count the most. Having a very good movement speed and aoe weapons. This is what you generally look out for items. I advise to also keep a firefield weapon regardless of the level or class- you will need it later as a time saver.
In the early game your char most often cannot make use of his best or defining skills as they usually come way later. And the skills at hand are underlevelled. I find the best things is to get appropriate early game guns and level up with them until your skilled out a bit.
- good early game Weapon by faction that can carry you the first 15-20 levels:
a.) Hunters: Cannonades (good splash) and 1 point in Rapid fire for bursting single targets
b) Cabalists: Hive Crystals (huge and alot of fields, stuff dies behind you), Tempest Gun for single Targets -keep 10m distance though.
d) Templars: surgecasters (field aoe), shockbomber (splash), Firefield Caster and the currently OP till endgame Novaguns. If you want a smooth and quick ride, dont go for swords early. You can go for shields when you get shield throw/turn and taunt though. Splash swords work, though you are quicker with guns in the beginning.
Also get every Adrenaline pill you can get. And waste them even for the longer in station walks.
When i buy Analysers, i allways buy 100. This a.) saves time and b.) you need to analyse alot because of the goddam Willpower perk which needs you to analyse 2000 items and you are likely to need those stats in the endgame.
It is also good to know how the game handles Player/Mob Level differences. Afaik you gain more xp the nearer your level is to the mobs level. So overleveling or underleveling is bad for xp. Also the higher the level difference the harder/easier fighting the mobs get.
Currently this is a non issue as you have a good leveling experience as long as you do all quests after another AND do all/most Ancient Bloods you come by.
But you might get unlucky with finding them and end up in a situation where the mobs level exceed yours by 7 or more levels. Then not only the game gets considerably harder you also dont make alot of XP. So when you experience this which can only happen on the second Nightmare run, you need to level up and can do this in Stonhenge by doing Headruns or in Parliament by doing Brompton Cemetary runs.
Before you start your first quest in Holborn there are a few things you need to know about Questing. The order of which you do the quests decides wether you need to rerun Levels. So this is important in order not to do redundant content and i will adress this in detail below.
There are questlines in the game where you need to port back at the end of the map and hand in the solved quests to get new follow up quests in the same line further on, which is pretty annoying and you need to know which are the ones where you should port back. Other questlines you can just go through to the end without ever porting back. I wish all questlines were like that and i do my best to hint on when to port back for follow ups and when not.
On a general note, if you have a questline that takes you to a destination a couple of maps away and you have 2 Quest for the first map and 1 for the next, then you need to port back after the first map to get further quests.
Other lines provide you with already 2 quests per map right from the start. There you are save to plough through.
On sidequests it is better to port back after the level.
Most Quests make you kill a certain Mob x times or get an item from a Mob x times. Now these quest sometimes behave weirdly. You will occasionally come to the end of a map and you are still at 7/8 mobs or items in the Quest Tracker. So you need to go through the level again and find the mob or the item. BUT you dont run back to the start from the end of the level. Instead you hit Enter and type /stuck into chat. That way you port back to the beginning of the level and dont have tor run it back and forth.
If you searched everywhere and cannot find the last Mob before you logout or reset the instance, you should leave the Map and go back in again. In 99% of the cases a new Mob then spawns somewhere.
In case of the get X item quests you should notice when the mobs stop dropping the items. And if you are still at 9/10 it is very likely that you forgot to pick up one and should immedeatly head back.
If nothing helps and your map is bricked you need to reset the map. This can be done by logging in and out. OR by creating and leaving a party (Hit P to enter the Party Menu). The moment you hit “create Party” you get instantly ported back to your last station, which is also the quickest way to end a questline when you know you dont want to get back there - i do this very often. Though this is a quick port, you lose your portals you might have set up. But the instance reset only finally happens when you leave that party you just created. Then you can do the quest again.
Another way is to abandon the quest an retake it from the original questgiver. I prefer a proper instance reset in that cases.
But keep in mind, /stuck and instance reset saves you alot of time through quickly porting.
Sometimes there are quests where you need to find mobs that have the ability to port around or be invisible for the most time. If you see kill Defilers, Warpers, Soul Drinkers etc. it is time to really look in every corner right from the start of the map. Otherwise you later spend alot of time to find them. Especially annoying in the big open area levels.
Sometimes in the early game you encounter mobs that regenerate and you dont seem to be able to kill them. If these are not quest targets leave them alone. If these are Headhunts and you need to kill them either pull out a poisoning weapon (which you most likely not have) or reset the instance. Shit happens.
You will come across quite alot of Hellrifts while leveling. If they contain an Ancient Blood, do it. If you do all Ancient Bloods you come across you have the smoothest level experience and never trail behind so that Mobs get too hard.
However Ancient Bloods are not that easy in the beginning depending on your class and experience. When you first hit one around level 12 they are a challenge and you need to find a good strat. Especially clearing the entrance can be hard as it is usually in the middle and packed with mobs that gangbang you from all sides (a spectral one as your first one might not be a good idea too). You need to have AOE (see the recommended weapons above) and you might need to retreat through the entrance a couple of times and heal up when it gets too hard to clear the entrance area. After having the entrance clear it is much easier. But later on you get the hang of it and it earns you alot of XP.
If you cant do the first couple of ABs dont worry. There are other means to catch up in Levels.
A side note on Quest rewards:
You can reroll any Quest rewards you are being offered. This works by clicking on the little Mail button bottom left when the loot window is open. If you are sent to Finnsbury Market to turn in a quest for weapon rewards, it can be nice to reroll often. Because this loot offers some low level items as high level variants that dont even exist elsewhere in the game.
Also Tracy in Parliament offers the highest level legendary Weapons in the game and by rerolling the loot you allways get a max slot one.
When you have killed Sydonai for the first time, you should be level 35 for the smoothest transition. If you are way lower got to Stonehenge and do some Headhunts in Wake Hollow to level up. Because in Nightmare mode it takes a while to have access to Stonehenge and the Mobs Level rises quickly.
Quest Order and Special things by Station
Do the questline from little Wart first and then got Holborn Access Shaft. Also if you dont have any paladium, sell the first items. The vendor in Holborn and Covent Garden sometimes offers a ton of Adrenaline Pills and you want to get them all.
2.) Covent Garden.
When you reach Covent Garden port back to Holborn an turn in the solved quests and port back to Covent Garden.
Dont do the Covent Garden Market Quest first. Save it until there are no other quests. Allways make sure you checked the blue headhunter pylon for a quest. It doesnt have a ? on top of it so you might forget if you dont look at the map (happens to me quite often).
First take the left stairway and then do the Train Depot. Turn in the quests and then off to the Steam Tunnels. Then take the right Stairway and do the Sewers. After that you visit Covent Garden Market kill the Ravagers from the additional quest you just got and enter the Hellrift and kill Shulgoth. You dont have to, you can just run by and click on the quest Corpse. You then journey on to Charing Cross Station.
3.) Charing Cross
You do the Piccadilly Line First. Then you get sent to Greenpark Station. When you arrive there go to Lucius Aldin, take his quest and then go to Savile Row first instead of Death Sewers. This will lead you to Oxford Station wich gives you parallel quests to the ones you got from Lucius. So whenever you get a new one from him in Greenpark also check back to Oxford Station.
There will also be two quests available in Oxford that will come up later on eg when another quest takes you to Downing Street and one when you hit Monument Station. So check in there later again-you won’t be asked for it somewhere so you have to remember.
The next Charing Cross Line is Chocolate Park. After Chocolate Park you get a quest from Techsmith XY on the upper floor to collect some items. These are used to create/get the piecemaker and you want to have this item autoshredder. The fastest way is to buy the wanted questitems from the Auction House you have access to in Charing Cross for the first time- IF they are available which they ususally are (Misc/Questitems/3 of each)- thats why you should have spared your money. After that you get the Millenium Battle questline and two sidequests (Piccadilly and Admirality Arch)- do the latter first. And before you head to Millenium Battle go back to Oxford and get the Downing Street quest. You are asked to kill Phenomenae which is one of the invisible/warping mobs. So when you are too quick at the start you might oversee him.
After that comes the Embankment Redoubt Quest. You are asked to navigate a team of Hunters through the streets and kill a Big Fellbore called Beelzebub in the end. The quickest way to do it is to straight up point the group to Beelzebub at the end of the map and dont care for anything else. Dont use any of the skills apart from the group heal if needed until the group arrives at him. Then make them shoot him by using the target skill on Beelzebub. When he spawns his minions drop a bomb and heal your guys. As soon as he dies click the portal and you are done and can “create party portal” back.
Then you have to kill The Mind of Techsmith and after that head to Temple Station.
4.) Temple Station
When you reach Temple Station direcly port back to Charing Cross Station and take the new quests and do the run to Temple Station again. If you want to, reset the instance so you get fresh mobs. This questline requires you to port back after each map to get follow up quests.
The good thing though is that the rest of Temple Station is straight forward and a breeze to quest. You start with Aldwych.
The Big Gun Down is special and you can save alot of time if you have the mentioned firefield weapon.
Instead of manning the turret and gun down the waves of orbiles you can just jump down into the streets, go around the block counterclockwise until you reach a corner where there is rubble instead of a building. If you aim your weapon somewhere high near the broken roof and let a field come up there you ignite the Exospector and he dies quickly.
Otherwise you can do all quests in Temple Station one after another without porting back and checking for follow ups- very pleasant to play. With two exceptions!
When you enter the downed Exospector and are going to enter to get the sample for Ser Sing, port back and grab another quest for it.
When you meet the Messenger. He gives you a PDA. You need to activate it because this opens up a new Quest and you get to Kill Cracklepop in Angels Passage after having met Mag in the Station. If you forget that you have to do one of the most annyoing Quests in the game again. At Angel Passage i advise to create a portal if you are new. After you killed Occulus you get the entrace to Monument Station.
5.) Monument Station
The Quest here are scattered all over the place and you get sidetracked to another station early on too. Also check Oxford station again!
First do Monument Tunnels and then the follow up Crawlway. Then Upper Thames and Watermans Walk. Then go to Templar Base.
6.) Templar Base
Here you get three questlines and a couple of sidequests. In the questlines you allways hand in the solved quests of the map to get new ones for the next map in the line. After that you do all remaining sidequests. Tudor street can be easily reached by entering Temple Place and then do the /stuck trick.
In Templar base you get access to Stonhenge at level 15 (or 20?) and Parliament at Level 25. If you need to catch up in levels and dont have an Ancient Blood at hand you can allways do Wake Hollow in Stone Henge.
7.) Monument Station again
Your are being asked to go to the Tower of London via Lower Thames. BUT before going there do ALL other sidequests because the last one gives you another one at Lower Thames and finally at Tower of London. Also on the way to the Tower allways port back after a map to get follow ups.
You then kill Abaddon and the sidequest mob and return. Then you are being sent to Aldgate which you can do straight. In Aldgate keep all questitems that are leftover because these are the same items you need for the piecemaker quest. Your follow up chars will be thankfull for this.
Jons will again provide you with alot of sidequests- it is all over the place. But finally you are being sent to Cannon Street Rail. There you are asked to collect three heavy pieces which make you go pretty slow. So when you find them, you dont go back but /stuck back.
Edit: In Alternalos guide there is an even shorter version of the Quest. When you first enter Cannon Street Rail dont speak with the Techmsith but find the first piece/questitem and /stuck back. When you then talk with him and give him the first item you instantly finnish the quest without getting the other two pieces.
Finally you will get to fight Bloodbane and then do Crown Office Row with its reanimating Minigame.
You are then sent to Liverpool Station.
On the way to there you encounter the Broker. He provides you with a questline which starts way back in Charing Cross and ends in St. Pauls Station. So you leave him here and do his questline when you get to St. Pauls.
8.) Liverpool Station
Prepare to do Liverpool in one go because it has a quirky Moment. Do the one Liverpool Tunnel Quest first then head straight to Necropolis 5, place a portal and finnish the line fully by speaking with Emera. She sends you to Finsbury Square but you go there later.
Now go to Parliament Square and head to the Treasury and get the quest at the entrance to kill a Boss in Necropolis 5. Place a portal again there. If you have done this you get offered to kill him again which you can do if you want. But you have to get back to Necropolis 5 again after getting the reward.
In Necropolis 5 get back to Necropolis 3. Use /stuck if the entrance to the level is not reachable.
Place a portal there. And from now on never use a personal portal again in Liverpool or reset your instance- otherwise you have to run all the way to Necro 3 again later! When you need to port back use the Station Portal from your skills page.
You then do all quests straight up. The Tunnels, Bishopsgate questline, Devonshire Square Questline and all the sidequests afterwards- they are a breeze to play. You will eventually get a quest to kill Masterorb in guess where … Necropolis 3 where hopefully your portal still exists.
Then go to Finnsbury Square where Emera sent you initially. Check and reroll the legendary weapon loot for anything special like explained above (optional). The challenges there are pretty much on the running side so get Adreneline pills. The fourth one especially requires you to run a certain order.
You first sprint over to the Beacon to the left of you, activate him then adrenaline to the opposite one. Then sprint to the middle one where you most likely get interrupted by the mobs. You kill them, activate the Beacon and then head to the stranded ship north. This is where the mobs spawns (on the other side) and you can just kill them until Light wins.
In White Cross it is advisable to have an adrenaline in the beginning to rush straight through as far as you can until the first boil comes up.
In Ploughyard dont be too quick or Murmur might bug out in the end and you cant click him. You dont really use the Robot though, you just enter and leave it again. When done you port home by creating a party, so you dont have to run or /stuck.
You then run to St. Pauls and kill Exterminator on the way.
9.) St. Pauls
You do the Quests as they come until you get one in Churchyard. Now is the time to go back to the Broker and do all his quests. You do this by placing a portal right by him and then do the quest. But then you dont port home via a personal portal, so the portal to the Broker keeps existing (like in Liverpool with the Necropolis quest). His last quest is Paternoster row in St. Pauls which comes right after Churchyard (and you most likely dont want to do Curchyard very often at least in Nightmare when you are fresh). He then gives you a valuable Backpack for all the 1slot items. Beware though that all 1 slot items you collect directly go there. So if you wonder where the mod you just picked up has gone. look in there. You also get some Attribute points!
St. Pauls is a bit back and forth, you can save a run somewhere but i have never really figured out where. If you do it on your first Char in the second playthrough (Nightmare) of the Campaign the going gets really tough especially in Churchyard. You might not even be able to do it and can save it for a later time. You are in the endgame anyways and can do most of the Parliament stuff and you are already level 50 and have some ranks. Most people do St. Pauls way later and stop questing as soon as they hit 50 in Monument Station. But you eventually want to have the attribute points the quests give you.
And there is one thing. In order to get the two daily quests in Parliament which give you Shinies you need to have killed Sydonai. Which is a tough thing to do. So maybe you get a party and kill him like that. There is one way even an underranked and geared Templar can kill him solo (it will be a task to kill the 5 lies though) and that is to gear some items that gets you to aura of vengeance 5 and then run like a chicken until he spawns his purple balls that you can reflect at him. So in case you are a Templar you might find this usefull. Summoners and Engis can also be able to kill him early. Classes without a tank are fucked for a while.
Thats it! I hope you save more time levelling than it was needed to read through this wall of text