Welcome to the ULTIMATE Champion Point GRIND Guide for The Elder Scrolls Online! In this guide, we’re going through everything you need to know in order to earn the most Champion Points Possible, in the fastest way possible – including the best gear options, gear traits, potions, food and drink, skills, Champion Point passives and some of my favorite all-time XP grind spots. So strap in and get ready – the ultimate CP grind guide starts right now!
The Set Up
Before you jump in headfirst grinding out those Champion Points and improving your character, you’ll want to make sure your build is optimized for experience gains. Believe it or not, these small tweaks can make a MASSIVE difference in your experience earned over time.
Choose The Right Sets
For an optimized XP Grinding build you will want to focus on primarily damage, so we’ll need item sets that do just that. For Stamina characters I recommend sets that improve your Maximum Stamina, Weapon Damage and Physical Penetration. A perfect example of this is Spriggan’s Thorns, which combines all of those stats into one fantastic item set. Some of my other favorite options include Crafted Sets like New Moon Acolyte or Hunding’s Rage since you can easily craft these in the Training trait as a great speed-focused set: Gryphon’s Ferocity.
For Magicka builds I recommend sets that improve Maximum Magicka, Spell Damage and Spell Penetration. A great, easy-to-get set that buffs all of these stats is Spinner’s Garments. Combine this with a crafted set such as New Moon Acolyte or Law of Julianos and you’ll be good to go!
If you have access to Monster Sets, try to grab one that focuses on Area Of Effect (AOE) Damage. This will ensure that you are doing damage to as many nearby enemies as possible. For Magicka Builds, a great option is Grothdarr. For Stamina Builds I recommend Sellistrix.
Best Gear Traits for Grinding XP
I recommend the Training trait on as many pieces of gear (armor AND weapons) as you can manage. Each Armor Piece with the training trait provides an additional 11% bonus experience earned per kill. Your main weapon can add an additional 9% to this! That’s a lot of FREE experience over time! Realistically, golding out every single piece of Training gear is probably not going to happen, but don’t worry – Epic Quality (Purple) is nearly as good, providing a solid 10% experience bonus per piece.
Food And Drink Buffs
Your Food or Drink buff options should ideally support your main resource, either Max Stamina or Max Magicka, as well as buff your Health and main recovery stat (Stamina or Magicka). With that in mind, the best options will be Dubious Cameron Throne for Stamina Builds and Witchmother’s Potent Brew for Magicka Builds. These Drink buffs provide a great balance of all those important stats and should also be extremely cheap to purchase on guild traders.
The best potion to use when grinding Champion Points is the one that returns your main resource: either Magicka or Stamina. Simply pick up a basic resource potion, which are usually dropped by enemies quite often, and use it as needed.
While you can use more expensive potions that improve your Spell or Weapon Damage, Critical Rating and so on, having those extra buffs isn’t typically worth the cost if you just want to grind experience. Don’t waste your hard-earned gold on these!
Experience Scrolls & Ambrosia
Don’t miss this step!! Using an Experience Scroll or Ambrosia can improve your total experience gained by an additional 50%, 100% or 150% depending on the quality of the item! This is a massive experience boost and you should attempt to keep it on your character whenever you set out to grind Champion Points.
Experience Scrolls are usually obtained as part of the in-game daily reward calendar, but can also be purchased in the Crown Store or found inside Crown Crates. Stock up on these whenever you can, especially if you can get one for free!
Ambrosia is crafted by players in ESO and can usually be purchased from guild traders in major towns. This offers the exact same type of Buff found in Experience Scrolls, so the two can never stack.
How To Increase Ambrosia Durations
This step is extremely important as well if you plan on using purchased or crafted Ambrosia. The base duration for this Drink is only 30 minutes, which is very, very short. However, there are some passive buffs you can obtain on your character which will increase this duration. These buffs are:
- Connoisseur – increase Consumed Drink durations by 20 minutes (Provisioning Skill Line)
- Reveler – increases the duration of Drinks by 15 minutes (Nord Passive)
There are many possible weapons your character can use in The Elder Scrolls Online, from Bows to Swords to Staves, so which is best for earning the most experience possible?
For Stamina Characters I recommend using either Dual Wield or a Two-Hander. This has nothing to do with style or preference. Instead, it has to do with the Weapon Skills and Passives linked to each skill line. Dual Wield for example has the amazing Steel Tornado skill which obliterates enemies in a large circle around the player. The Two-Handed skill line is equally impressive with the Brawler Skill doing great cleave damage and providing a free damage shield, and Reverse Slice doing bonus Execute damage to nearby enemies.
For Magicka Characters, I recommend using a Destruction Staff as your Primary weapon. You can always use a Restoration Staff as your backup weapon. The Destruction Staff has some strong AOE abilities as well, including Unstable Wall Of Elements and Pulsar. The Destruction Staff passives also make your Lightning Staff heavy attacks hit nearby enemies for the same amount of damage as the primary target! This is why Lightning Staff is recommended.
There are some amazing Champion Point stars you can unlock EARLY to make the rest of your CP leveling process even easier. Below is a list of my recommended early CP nodes.
How Does Enlightenment Work?
Enlightenment is a bonus for the XP you earn while playing that counts toward your Champion Point progression.
- Every 24 hours, you receive the “Enlightenment” buff which amplifies your Champion Point Experience earned by roughly 4x!
- This buff only allows you to earn a few Champion Points before running out.
- You will receive a message on your screen that you are Enlightened, and you can also hover over your XP bar to see if you are Enlightened.
- If you end up not using up all your Enlightenment while you play, it will continue to accrue for a maximum of 12 days. Once you hit the limit, you will not gain any additional Enlightenment until you begin to use it by gaining XP.
Using Random Group Finder For Massive XP Gains
When you use the ESO Group Finder to queue for either a Random Dungeon or a Random Battleground you can earn bonus loot and lots of experience! The Bonus Reward for both Random Dungeons and Random Battlegrounds can only be earned once per day.
To earn the reward for a dungeon the dungeon must be completed by defeating the final boss. To earn the random reward for Battlegrounds your team must place either 1st or 2nd. Completing both random activities each day is a fantastic way to level up your Champion Points fairly easily.
Best Overland Zones For Grinding Experience and Champion Points
Believe it or not, overland mobs have some of the highest experience modifiers in the game. That’s because several years ago indoor enemy XP was nerfed. Overland enemies are typically some of the easiest in the game and spawn times are usually fairly quick, so grinding in these Overland spots can be highly effective, especially using the Set Up Above.
Here are some of my favorite Overland grind spots.
Fort Viraak, Stonefalls
Many soldiers AND zombies are located just outside the gates of Fort Virak, making it a great Grind location. It is also in the far north corner of Stone Falls, far away from any major towns or wayshrines, which means there is rarely anyone here. Grab as many enemies as you can and create a wide circle, using the rocks as line of site protection. Once all your enemies are grouped, lay down some thick AOE damage to get them down as quickly as possible.
Deep Graves, Shadowfen
Deep Graves is an ancient ruin located in the zone of Shadowfen. This zone is already pretty ignored by most, and the fact that we are against the south wall of the zone makes it even more unlikely you will ever see anyone else grinding here. Your primary target in this location will be wisps. Wisps are melee enemies with fairly low HP that also happen to hit like a wet noodle, making them extremely easy to defeat. Circle around the inside and outside of the ruins, picking up as many wisps as you can in each pull. You can also grab any extra enemies you see around the outside of the ruins like Giant Snakes.
Cliffs Of Failure, Coldharbor
Many people know Coldharbor for grinding zombies, but my favorite spot in the zone is actually a unique quest area called Cliffs Of Failure. To get started, enter the portal on the cliff and continue on through until you reach an open area on the opposite cliff side. This area is absolutely huge, but I tend to stick to the large, open space in the middle. Here you can easily pull from groups of skeletal soldiers (which are melee enemies – much easier to kill) and make a wide circle. The respawn time is also fast enough where as you complete the circle the first enemies should just be coming back for you.
Bandaari Trading Post Camps, Malabal Tor
The Bandaari Trading Post camps in Malabal Tor is an interesting location for grinding XP because in this area you actually have a neutral faction of mercenaries that are not actively aggressive towards players. However, they are still excellent for grinding because of how many mercenaries are in the camps. These NPC’s also have a very fast respawn timer. Don’t worry — killing them will not trigger bounties or guards to attack you in the nearby trading post either.
Unmarked Camlorn Fort, Glenumbra
One of my favorite XP grinding location in ESO is a tiny, unmarked Fort just south of Camlorn Castle in the zone of Glenumbra. This area is part of another zone quest called Rally Cry. To start the quest, simply talk to the General standing outside the fort, then enter through the main gates. Here you’ll find the Orc warrior Shaza gra-Dasik – join up with her and get ready to slay some werewolves!
What’s great about this quest is that as Shaza walks through the fort she spawns multiple waves of werewolves in addition to those already inside the fort, giving us tons of enemies to defeat. Remember also that since werewolves have higher health than normal enemies they also provide extra experience!
Dune, Reaper’s March
Dune is another great grinding location in the Aldemeri Dominion faction zone of Reaper’s March. To access the best XP grinding area, walk up the stairs from the wayshrine and take the first left. Here, you should find plenty of Clannfears and Daedroths. Usually I pull these in groups of 3-4 because they are a bit tougher than normal enemies. While this can be challenging, it’s also great for XP grinding because the game actually gives you MORE experience than you would get for a regular enemy. Clannfears give you 50% bonus experience and Deadroths give you 100% (double) experience.
Keep in mind that there are some quests here associated with restoring the Mage’s Guild, but if you complete those then all the enemies will disappear!
Muth Gnarr, Deshaan
Muth Gnarr is a small village in the zone of Deshaan that has been overrun by the living dead! If you know anything about ESO, you’ll know that zombie grinds are some of the easiest in the game, which makes this spot fantastic! Zombies are melee enemies so they don’t cast pesky spells or shoot annoying arrows. All you have to do is tag a group with a light attack and they will blinding follow you to their (second?) death.
Sap Collection Facility, Coldharbor
This hidden location can only be unlocked by starting a quest line on the outskirts of Coldharbor, so you will rarely see anyone here and even if you do they usually are just passing through to complete the quest objective. Here at the Sap Collection Facility you’ll need to talk to Treeminder Xohaneel to begin the quest line, then approach the base of the pyramids. Next, talk to An-Jeen-Sakka to initiate the Trial Of The Body quest. This should put a new marker on your map for the Sap Collection Facility within the nearby pyramid. Once inside you’ll encounter several groups of tightly packed Deadric enemies which extremely fast respawn timers – perfect for grinding XP!
White Rose Prison, Shadowfen
Many players in ESO are aware of the group arena called Black Rose Prison, but did you know there is also a White Rose Prison in the base game zone of Shadowfen? In this specific prison, the prisons are turning feral, attacking everything in sight including the guards! For XP grinding, these enemies are quite nice because they only use melee abilities and also actually count as undead, meaning you can also level up your Fighter’s Guild skill line at the same time. By advancing the quest further you also unlock the inside of the prison which has even more enemies.
Moonhenge in the zone of Greenshade is a fun quest area that unlocks your own, personal Daedric plane full of baddies ready for the slaying! What could be better? Remember that the Deadroths and Clannfears also provide bonus XP due to their extra health. And even though this is a pretty interesting side quest to see all the way through, keep in mind that if you finish the quest you will lose access to this area permanently – so don’t complete the quest yet if you enjoy the grind here!
Best Public Dungeons For Grinding Experience and Champion Points
Public Dungeons in The Elder Scrolls Online have some of the highest mob density in the game – usually 5-8 enemies per pack, plus multiple packs can be combined together if you can handle it. Depending on your dungeon, these mobs can also drop LOTS of loot and gold with an incredibly fast spawn rate to boot.
Here are some of my favorite Public Dungeon zones for Grinding Champion Points.
Rkindaleft is an old school public dungeon from the Elder Scrolls Online Orsinium DLC. Like most public dungeons it has a large amount of fast-spawning enemies that also drop great loot and lots of gold. Once you enter the zone you’ll need to move beyond the initial entrance area which contains mostly Dwemer Spiders and come outside to the first main area. From here you can move up the bridge to the right. Orcs are the main target here as there are TONS of these and they all die fairly quickly.
The Lion’s Den, The Rift
The Lion’s Den is a massive Public Dungeon with plenty of room to roam around. My favorite areas are the zone entrance and just past the first gate. Enemy groups here are usually fairly large (5-8 enemies in total) and the groups spawn close enough together that you can pull several of them at once. Make sure to pull as many enemies as you can handle!
Obsidian Scar, Rivenspire
Obsidian Scar is great Public Dungeon for grinding experience due to an abundance of enemies, especially in the center room. This rectangular shaped room has at least 4 groups of enemies which can all be pulled at once for maximum experience gain. Once you finish off the main room head down one of the hallways on either side of the room and start killing the enemies there. All of the hallways loop back to that main room, so try to create a circular route that takes you through.
Vile Manse, Reaper’s March
Vile Manse is one of my all time favorite public dungeons. Most people know about it, so you will usually see people on the upper levels of the basement. However, not many people know about the hidden tunnels underneath the zone which is part of a questline. Search the basement for a hole in the ground (near the west wall) and drop through to unlock this totally new area of the zone with even more enemies to farm!
Crimson Cove, Malabal Tor
Crimson Cove has at least three huge caverns with multiple enemy spawns inside each. Try to make at least one of these caverns your focus for grinding. Once you’ve cleared out that cavern you can clear out the adjacent tunnels and then loop back around. Enemies in Crimson Cove are Imperial, so they are known to also drop LOTS of gold per kill and you can routinely make 200-300 gold per pull once you figure out a good spawn rotation.
Best Dolmen Routes For Grinding Experience and Champion Points
Dolmens in The Elder Scrolls Online are a fast and efficient way of Grinding experience at almost any level and can be done with a group or solo. Dolmens spawn in lots of enemies very quickly and clearing the dungeon also rewards bonus experience!
These are the 5 best Dolmen zones for grinding experience:
- Alik’r Desert
- Malabal Tor
Which zone is best for you will depend on your goal. Is your goal to join a group and let them do most of the work? Head to Alik’r Desert for that. Want to play solo and not be bothered? Head to Auridon. Want sellable loot while you grind? Then choose Bangkorai, Deshaan or Malabal Tor.
Everything is broken down in detail and explained in the video below.
Best Arenas For Grinding Experience and Champion Points
Arenas can be a very efficient way of gaining experience in ESO because enemies are always spawning in, non-stop! Some of these Arenas can also be completed in a group, making them even faster.
1) Black Rose Prison
Black Rose Prison has a high density of quickly spawning mobs in the first arena, so the best option here is to clear the first 4 waves then reset the Arena and start again. Nefas has a great video on this:
2) Maelstrom Arena
Maelstrom Arena is the only Solo Arena on this list but it also offers high mob density in the first few stages.
3) Dragonstar Arena
Dragonstar is a group Arena much like Black Rose Prison so feel free to bring a friend to make things go faster.
Note: All of these Arenas should be completed on Normal Difficulty, which makes enemies spawn with less HP, making them much easier to kill.
My Favorite Hidden Grind Locations
Looking to avoid the crowds? These are some of my favorite hidden locations that few people know about. This is a Member’s Only Video.
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The Best Builds For Grinding Experience and Champion Points
In 2021 we started a new build series for ESO focused on fast, powerful builds that could quickly kill groups of enemies to maximize your experience gained. These are Grind Gods:
The BOWZERKER Build is an insanely strong Bow Only build for The Elder Scrolls Online, focused on quick Burst Damage and mobility! This build is ideal for grinding experience and Champion Points in ESO as quickly as possible, not to mention it’s just incredibly fun!
The ICE STORM Build is a Powerful One Bar set up for the Magicka Warden with impressive Damage, Speed and nearly infinite Sustain. This build will be great for leveling up or Grinding Champion Points and is extremely easy and FUN to play!
The CROSSBONES Build is an amazing burst damage build for the Stamina Necromancer in The Elder Scrolls Online, combining Skeletal Bombs with ESO’s only Crossbow skill! With powerful damage, fantastic speed, and amazing health recovery, this build is great choice for Grinding XP or any other type of Solo Content in ESO.
The DOUBLE DRAGON Build is an incredibly EASY one bar build for The Elder Scrolls Online. This powerful Stamina Dragonknight build has amazing AOE damage potential and insane Speed! Get ready to unleash your full Dragon potential with this one!
The FIRE STORM Build is a Powerful One Bar set up for the Magicka Dragonknight with impressive Damage, Speed and nearly infinite Sustain. This build will be great for leveling up or Grinding Champion Points and is extremely easy and FUN to play!
The ARCHMAGE Build is an insanely strong one bar build for The Elder Scrolls Online, focused on explosive AOE damage, stuns, roots and other means of crowd control. This build literally blows enemies sky high and is a blast to play!
The DEATH STAR Build is a Hybrid Build for the Nightblade Class with amazing damage and high speed! This unique build is also able to cast Infinite Ultimates as long as you are killing enemies! Insane!
The LAW BRINGER Build is an incredibly EASY one bar build for The Elder Scrolls Online, great for beginners and experienced players alike! This powerful Magicka Templar build comes with amazing AOE damage potential as well as self-healing, making you unkillable in most situations if played correctly.
The CATACLYSM Build has incredible speed and damage, is able to nearly one-shot most basic enemies, and is blast to play! This is a Member’s Only Build.
THE GRYPHON Build is a fantastic choice for a Solo build in The Elder Scrolls Online. With great damage and impressive speed, this build can quickly explode through content including Overland zones, Delves and Public Dungeons. This build is ideal for Grinding Champion Points as well!