Skip to main content

Best Elden Ring Knight build: stats, weapon, armor and talismans

You can’t go wrong with the classics.

Character screenshot from Elden Ring with a varion of the Maliketh set
Image credit: FromSoftware/Eurogamer

In the dark fantasy world of Elden Ring, very few builds give you the feeling of a traditional adventurer like the Knight build does.

Although many builds take advantage of powerful spells or legendary weapons in Elden Ring, others focus on less overpowered solutions and are still pretty effective against the daunting challenges in the game.

If you’re looking for a traditional, straightforward build, we’ve got you covered. In this guide, you find a complete rundown on the best Knight build in Elden Ring with the best stats, weapons, armors, and talismans that will allow you to tackle any enemy in the game.

On this page:

How to play with the Knight build in Elden Ring

While we tend to have a preconception of what a Knight build is, there are a good number of variations for it. The 'knight' aspect of the build is more thematic than necessarily a specific type of gameplay. For this Knight build, we are going for a traditional Strength-centered approach, where we use a long or colossal weapon to attack enemies with the Lion’s Claw Ash of War.

Ash of War: Lion's Claw screenshot from Elden Ring with the text "This Ash of War grants an armament the Heavy affinity and the following skill:"
Image credit: FromSoftware/Eurogamer

The Lion’s Claw is part of the select group of Ashes of War that can literally carry you throughout the whole game. By using this ability, you leap forward with your weapon, hitting enemies in front of you, causing posture and direct damage. The Lion’s Claw is not as powerful as the likes of the Taker’s Flame, but it is still extremely strong.

The idea of this build is to use the Lion’s Claw to stagger enemies and allow you to land critical hits. This is a simple but effective strategy and I’ll tell you why. Different from builds centred around detrimental effects, such as Poison, or magical damage, this Knight build doesn’t need to worry about facing enemies resistant to the kind of damage it causes. Although the amount of damage necessary to break a boss’s stance varies, all of them are susceptible to posture damage.

To make your life easier when trying to land the Lion’s Claw skill, this build has a lot of Vigor and relies on heavy armour. This build requires you to stick close to enemies, who are going to likely hit you more often than not during a fight. Because of that, we want a large pool of health and high poise to handle their attacks.

Elden Ring Knight best stats

For this build, we want to reach high figures for Vigor and Strength. While the first stat regulates how much health you have, the second impacts directly the damage you can cause. Alongside these two attributes, Endurance is the third most important for this build, because we want to use some good armour sets without sacrificing the capacity to roll out of enemy’s attacks.

If you’re a new player, we suggest the starting classes Vagabond or Hero. The stat distribution these two classes offer right off the bat is enough to start playing as a knight. Below, you find how many points a level 150 character should approximately have at each stat:

  • Vigor: 60
  • Mind: 24
  • Endurance: 30
  • Strength: 80
  • Dexterity: 14
  • Intelligence: 9
  • Faith: 9
  • Arcane: 7

In case you would like to have access to more tools, such as incantations to buff your attack and defence, you can take some points from Strength to put in Faith. By leaving 60 points in Strength, you have more than enough to make the build work.

Elden Ring Knight best weapons

It’s possible to play a Knight build with medium swords, maces, hammers, and halberds. For this build, we are focusing on greatswords and colossal swords. We want them mostly because by infusing Lion’s Claws into them, you can cause high posture damage.

At the beginning of the game, when you’re still in Stormveil, one of the best options is to get the Claymore. This is a greatsword that you can find in a chest in Castle Morne and requires only 16 Strength and 13 Dexterity to use. The reason you want this sword is because it already comes with the Lion’s Claw skill. The Claymore is more than enough to face the initial bosses and learn how to handle the skill.

Character screenshot from Elden Ring showing the Greatsword
Image credit: FromSoftware/Eurogamer

Later on, once you’re stronger to tackle Caelid, it’s time to get the best weapon for this build. The Greatsword is a colossal sword, similar to the famous sword from the Berserk anime/manga. This impressive weapon scales with Strength and Dexterity and requires 31 Strength and 12 Dexterity for you to use it.

To find the Greatsword, you need to travel to Caelid and follow the main road until you find a carriage. Next to it, there are a few Giant Dogs so be careful because they can easily kill you between early to mid-game. Open the chest in the back of the carriage to find the Greatsword. For this build, there’s actually no need to look for other weapons once you have the Greatsword.

Elden Ring Knight best armor

With this Knight build, you might want to prioritize the aesthetic factor instead of attributes. Luckily, there are a good number of sets of armour with good resistance, poise, and that will still make you look like a respectable knight.

The Knight armour set is one of the first you have access to in the game because the Twin Mainde Husks sell the parts in the Roundtable Hold. Although this is a simple armour set, don't let its look fool you. In addition to not affecting your equipment load, this set has 51 Poise, which is great for the early and mid-game. In case you’d like to play around with its look, consider using the Carian Knight Helm, from the Carian Knight set which you find in the Academy of Raya Lucaria.

Character screenshot from Elden Ring wearing the Knight set
Image credit: FromSoftware/Eurogamer

In case you want a less traditional look but good stats in your armour, consider completing D, the Hunter’s quest. At the end of his quest, you receive the Twinned Set armour, which is a considerable upgrade from the Knight armour set in terms of resistance.

Once you’re in the late portion of the game, you find a few different sets that can work with the build thematically speaking. Maliketh’s Set is a great option if you’re looking for ways to make a type of dark knight. Because you can only buy this set from Enia in the Roundtable Hold after you defeat Maliketh in Crumbling Farum Azula, it might take a while until you can wear this one.

Elden Ring Knight best talismans

As a build focused on melee range combat and using an Ash of War, the Knight build needs certain talismans to guarantee the flow of the gameplay loop. The selected talismans for this build only become available later in the game. In the early stages, you should look for talismans that increase the primary stats of the build and defence.

When it comes to increasing your damage output, the best talisman is the Shard of Alexander. This talisman increases the attack power of your skills, which means that your Lion’s Claw will hit harder when having Shard of Alexander equipped. To put your hands on this talisman, you need to complete Iron Fist Alexander’s questline.

Alongside Shard of Alexander, another useful talisman is the Carian Filigreed Crest, which reduces the FP cost of your skills. Even though it’s not directly increasing your damage output, this talisman ensures that you can cast more Lion’s Claws with a bar of FP. Once you have met War Counselor Iji by exploring the western region of Liurnia of the Lakes, or during Blaidd’s questline, you can buy the Carian Filigreed Crest from him.

Carian Filigreed Crest screenshot from Elden Ring with the text "A talisman adorned with the royal crest. Lowers FP consumed by skills."
Image credit: FromSoftware/Eurogamer

The third talisman you want for this build is the Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman. Considering how much damage you will eventually take playing this build, this talisman’s effect of reducing the physical damage taken becomes extremely useful. You will find the Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman in Elphael, Brace of the Haligtree, a secret area in the Lands Between that you access by unlocking the Consecrated Snowfield area.

In the last talisman slot, you want to have the Great-Jar’s Arsenal talisman. This item is great for this build since it increases the amount of weight that you can carry. In case you want to wear heavier armour sets or more weapons, this talisman is what you need. You gain this item by completing the Great-Jar’s challenge in the Dragonbarrow area, located in the north part of Caelid.

Next build: Elden Ring Bleed build

Need more help? Jump back to our list of Elden Ring builds or our Elden Ring walkthrough.

Read this next