The best Elden Ring classes for strength, dexterity, magic

By Kenneth Williams


Feb 24, 2022

Reading time: 3 min

Choosing the best Elden Ring classes will get any build off to the right start.

Starting classes were an important part of any Dark Souls playthrough, and Elden Ring looks to be no different. Thanks to early leaks from the adventure guide, fans can already start planning out their dream Tarnished before the exact release time. Whether you’re looking to embrace strength, dexterity, or magic builds, these are the best classes to start as in Elden Ring.

The best class for strength Elden Ring builds

Strength builds have historically been some of the best options in the entire Dark Souls trilogy, so it makes sense to choose a brawny starting class for your first playthrough. The highest starting strength class in Elden Ring is Hero, who starts with 16. The battle ax-wielding warrior also has the lowest dexterity at just 9, in case you take pride in that sort of thing.

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If you’re interested in more diverse builds, the Vagabond and Confessor are also good options. Vagabond starts with the most vigor and a wide pool of weapons including a longsword and a halberd. Confessor starts with 14 faith, making them adept at miracles. The ability to heal with spells and move silently will come in handy in the Lands Between.

The best dexterity starting class in Elden Ring

Dexterity has a reputation as an amazing stat in most From Software titles. Hand-eye coordination also grants access to some of the coolest weapons in the Dark Souls series, so those going for style in Elden Ring should consider the Warrior. 16 dexterity is the most of any Elden Ring starting class, and his strength, endurance, and vigor are solid too.

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Bandit is also a solid pick for dexterity classes in Elden Ring. 13 dexterity comes with 14 arcane and 11 mind, making this class a solid mage as well. For pure melee dexterity builds, Elden Ring fans might want to consider a Samurai start. This has very high starting stats balanced by low intelligence and faith. That doesn’t matter much if you don’t cast any spells to begin with.

Magical classes in Elden Ring

The two types of magic in Elden Ring appear to be sorceries and incantations. The former is tied to the intelligence stat while the latter relies on faith. They also seem to fit cleanly into offensive and defensive abilities, but many exceptions will likely exist. Several melee weapons also scale off those attributes, and every caster needs a backup weapon.

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For aspiring mages, the Astrologer is an easy choice. 16 intelligence and 15 mind make them adept for spellcasting. Glintstone Pebble and Arc both offer offensive capability, though the backup shortsword and shield should also come in handy. Their relatively low vigor and endurance can be tuned up later in the playthrough.

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Based on stats, the Prophet appears to be the starting class meant for Elden Ring faith builds. Though infamously weak in Dark Souls 3, From Software has tweaked the build to be more viable in the open-world title. The Prophet has very balanced stats with high mind and a whopping 16 faith. They also start with the Catch Flame spell, the first accessible pyromancy.

What’s the point of the Wretch class?

The Elden Ring starting class list is full of intimidating warriors, which makes the Wretch stand out. With 10 in every stat and just a meager club, the Wretch seems like a strict downgrade compared to the rest. That’s because it is, but this isn’t an accident or joke by From Software.

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In previous Souls titles, there’s always been a character class referred to as the Deprived. This character similarly started with very low stats and no specialization. While weaker than the rest, the balanced stat spread also means that characters can fully customize the entirety of their Elden Ring stat build to their liking. 10 really isn’t all that bad considering many classes start with just 7 in some attributes.

While not recommended for first-time players, the Wretch starting class provides a challenging early game and customization once things ramp up.


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