ELDEN RING: Easy Mode Build

This is how to make the game super easy for anyone, playing offline.
Going for a quality melee build.

 

Overview

Start the game as Vagabond and pick the Golden Seed (extra flask early is the best option)
TURN OFF AUTO WALL RECOVERY (prevents the camera being out of control near walls)
And then unequip the halberd to be able to midroll.
Mid rolling is good enough for the whole game, being lighter would only benefit an experienced player (better dodge, less armor)

So I went quality for my first build and it was by far my easiest time in the game.
Going quality (STR+DEX) is a great way to experiment with nearly all weapons until you find your own style. Going melee is also easy to handle compared to magic builds, because you have simple and clear goals. All you really need is HP, stamina and basic scaling damage.
Magic build are broken for sure, however it requires to already have knowledge of the game, where are the good spells, what weakness to exploit etc. It also needs more stats to be effective as you want to increase FP and magic scaling, knowing that you still need some HP, stamina and basic stats to fight trash mobs with weapons. You don’t want to add too much ressource management for a first time build so I suggest going melee and forget about FP and FP flasks for now.

In this guide I will explain basic principles on how to create a quality build and all the good stuff to get in order to make the game as easy as possible, playing offline.

Playing coop is the true easy mode for sure, however to experience the game at your own pace and actually learn how to play you should go offline and don’t even bother until later. It will remove troll messages preventing you to open chests and climbing ladders, leaving you with only dev messages so you know what’s up. It also lets you experience the game without having to worry about random invasions, although it’s really not an issue in ER.

Stats

Being a melee build, you want to level Vigor ASAP.
Not having enough HP is the most common mistake all players make and is the only reason you die all the time against strong bossses and in PVP.
You want to get 20/25 Vigor before anything else. Only then you start increasing END, get your basic requirements for weapons before coming back to Vigor and focus heavily on it.
Having a ton of HP makes your experience much easier in PVE and is a necessity for PVP.

Leveling STR/DEX early is a big mistake. Most of your damage comes from weapon upgrades. Scaling only add damage once weapons are upgraded (improved scaling) and is only good once you reach high levels.

VIGOR:
Like I said, get 20/25 early. This is good for clearing Stormwind Castle. Get in the castle only after explored most of Limgrave, getting runes for leveling up as well as upgrade materials (at least a +3 weapon). Once you’re at this level of HP, you can then focus on getting some END, some STR/DEX (20 for each is good).
Once you got all this, get back to leveling Vigor like crazy, until 40 at the very least. I would suggest going up to 50 or even 60 before anything else.
Some talismans increase your max hp but these are %based so they might not seem like much at first, once you get to 50 / 60 vig however this is another story.
Running around with about 2k hp makes the game infinitely easier to deal with and lets you afford to be somewhat careless even in NG+

ENDURANCE:
Get 20 and be done with it. you never need much more that this, unless you want to perform some crazy 10 hits combos which will just never happen.
The weak ennemies die in a few hits anyway and the big ones have infinite poise or hyper armor and they will never let you land so many hits in a row.
You might want to boost END somewhat for equip load, 25 or 30 seems good enough for endgame.

STR/DEX:
It works like in dark souls 1, two handing a weapon grants you +50% STR. Therefore if you are primarily two handing a weapon you should get proper stats to reflect this.
In practice, rather than having a 1 to 1 ratio, you can safely get 20 STR / 20 DEX to unlock most weapons. Then, after getting a high hp pool, slowly increase it towards 27 STR / 40 DEX.
Reaching late game you should be 34 STR / 50 DEX.

I even tried 40 STR / 60 DEX and it still works fine. It seems that you can keep leveling them to crazy levels and it would still benefits you somewhat. Not sure yet about the stats hard caps.
However this is like NG+ consideration and probably unnecessary to get much higher (try to not level up too much for the sake of online play)

Following these guidelines you should be about lvl 140 in the endgame.

Leveling other stats is boring and unnecessary for that kind of build. You might consider getting 10 faith just to be able to cast cure poison, but even that is easily dealt with using items instead.

Equipment

ARMOR:
Anything that has good Physical DEF and poise is good to go.
Poise and armor will never make you unstoppable, but every bit helps. Lowering the damage taken and not getting stunlocked all the time is super helpful, coupled with high HP it makes everything much easier.
Your starting gear is more than enough for the first half of the game as far as armors go. Once you beat radhan, you can get his armor : not only does it look cool it also has great stats.
You could also do the volcano quests and get the scaled armor. Both are great choices. heavy but not too much, good stats, good poise.

WEAPON:
I would highly recommend the bloodhound’s fang. It was my weapon of choice on my first playthough, being the first strong weapon i found. I thought I would use it until I get something better,but i never felt the need to switch to anything else. It’s not that fancy but gets the job done everytime (even in NG+ i’m just R1 spamming everything).

Being a curved greatsword (murakumo type), it might feel a bit slow and awkward to use at first, but it has high damage, good range, good for catching npcs rolling away, strong art (L2 into R2), tends to stunlock most things (unless they have infinite poise of course) and also has built in bleed effect, which you can still improve with a bleed resin even though it’s a “special” weapon.

This is great stuff. You get this weapon in the gaol just left of the bridge leading to the weeping peninsula. If you struggle you can even befriend blaidd (get to hear the wolf in the mistwood, then get the emote from kale in church of elleh and then come back to the wolf) and get him to fight the boss for you. Easy stuff.

You should eventually invest in a bow (any bow, composite is good, black is good, even a basic shortbow is fine) just to have a ranged option. This is always helpful, if anything it lets you desactivate the fire towers in the catacombs from a safe distance.

If you really hate the bloodhound’s fang moveset, just settle for an ultra greatsword. Being able to stunlock ennemies is easymode, which is much harder to do if you’re going for a regular straight sword or any other light weapon. Go big.

Talismans to consider: increasing HP, Stamina, Equip Load, Poise, Physical DEF (most common damage type)

General Tips

>> try to play unlocked as often as possible.
it lets you have 100% control over your camera and movements and will just make you a better player in both pve and pvp once you get used to. Absolutely necessary to master this.
Playing with lock on isn’t wrong though, you just need to see it as a tool rather than a necessity. Playing unlocked helps staying in control against fast moving targets (randomly rolling in pits never feels good), makes boss fights less chaotic but more importantly it lets you be less predictable in pvp : harder to get back stabbed, being able to perform deadangle attacks etc.
Google claw grip to see how the pros do it. Feels wierd at first and then a whole new world gets available to you, being able to turn the camera around while running / rolling. Just don’t hurt yourself !

>> dodge forward
anytime you’re in a bad spot during a fight you might tend to roll backwards to attempt healing and this is generally something you want to avoid doing, even though it’s only natural to try. Most ennemies have good tracking and leap forwards during their attacks, so most of the time you roll back and get rekt because of it. The safe place is quite often being as close as possible to your ennemies (in between their legs, hugging their side/back). In that sence dodging towards the attack is 90% of the time the best thing to do, being safer (able to heal) and more aggressive in the process. The 10% left is when you want to run away instead, to avoid boss charged aoe (plenty of those)

>> explore and take what you can, avoid obvious danger.
you will often get rekt by some random big ennemy on the way.
graveyards are full of heroes : don’t be silly and avoid the scary dudes.
they will often drop next to nothing and are more of a hassle than a challenge. if you get stuck anywhere just go do something else instead and come back later when you’re stronger. don’t be lazy and clear most dungeons. you always get some runes and loot (including upgrade materials for your weapons and ashes)

>> spend all runes to suicide run
some areas are much harder/annoying/not worth clearing than the actual boss of said area. so just spend your runes and suicide run to grab the items/unlock bonfires (for instance in siofra river to activate the blue moose boss). You could then try to clear the area in reverse to make it easier on you (snipers not looking your way etc).
Don’t worry if you die and lose some runes it doesn’t matter in the long run.

>> be friendly with the crab cook
once you get to liurnia you can meet a dude with a metal mask selling crab dishes. make sure you buy 1. (also buy the medallion to initiate the volcano quest)
buying one there will make him eventually move near the capital (where you fight the dung eater).
There, he will sell you an upgraded version of his prawn dish. At this point, kill him or let the dung eater do his thing. either way get him dead so you get to buy his stuff from the roundtable.
it’s a consumable that boost physical def. get a ton of this. It’s simple, cheap and helpful.

>> maybe kill the merchants lol
there’s no way you’ll ever remember who sells what and where, so these friendly nomadic merchants just need to be exterminated. that way you get access to all of them at once in the hub.

>> get strong ashes
wolves are fine early on, but once you feel strong enough you should get to siofra river via the mistwood elevator and kill the blue moose boss to get the ancestral dude ash.
you have just enough FP to summon this dude with base mind value (as a vagabond). this guy gets the job done, he can snipe and tank just fine until you get the mimic tear.
at which point, well just switch to the mimic tear and gg.

>> craft some bleed resin
bleed is insanely effective against everything and is your go to easy strat in most cases. when they are immune to bleed however you can try the dragon resin (very few available ingame do not waste). Other good stuff to craft are poison cure, scarlet rot cure and basic arrows. Don’t forget rainbow stones to map invisible paths (at least 2 path found so far)

>> get interested in ranni’s quest
not only are these guys the most friendly ones imo, they also lead you to the underground ruins where you’ll find great loot and materials. progressing in this quest also gives you key items needed to explore 100%. Get to the carian manor north of Liurnia.

Last words

At this point the build is pretty much done and you have all you need to destroy the whole game. Going in with a ton of hp/armor, a heavy damage stunlocking bleed weapon + a clone of you (with improved hp) is enough to break all bosses, including the hardest ones (malenia getting stunlocked+bleed, fire giant, maliketh, nialls etc. all of them get rekt) The only boss requiring some thought would be the very last one, but even then with all these tools it’s not that hard.

How to make it work better? unequip all unecessary stuff (bow/shield etc) to prevent the mimic tear from derping too much.
Keep the main consumables on hand (bleed resin, crab dish boost). as long as you have at least one, the mimic gets multiple copies it can use for free.

About the great runes:
I was confused about it until I realized it only works if you burn a rune arc (kinda like an ember from dark3).
However I would suggest you do not rely on it too much, I only found about 40 throughout the entire game and farming those is boring af. Keep it for the very last boss, for which I equipped radhan’s great rune because why not having even more hp.

extra stuff :

Don’t worry about ashes of war (weapon skills) and armor tweaking. I’m sure you can achieve great stuff with these tools however I never used it and it did not matter. The best skills are usually the simple ones (from a pvp pov). Fancy skills are generally a great way to get killed by good players.

Don’t waste the star shards (FP regen), seluvis will trade for them eventually.

At least 2 weapons are impossible to get once you beat maliketh so make sure you get them before for the achievement (if you care). If you messed up that’s fine, just get all you can from the game and procceed to NG+.

Maybe once you beat the game consider not going in NG+ just yet, respec at the great library and try wierd, more interesting builds for your next playthroughs. Hopefully you won’t even need ashes or bleed anymore.

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