Elden Ring: Best rune farm to level up fast in 2024

Elden Ring
(Image credit: Windows Central)

The open world of FromSoftware's 2022 Game of the Year-winning Soulslike Elden Ring is absolutely colossal, but in order to explore most of it, you'll need to use runes (experience points) to level up your Tarnished so that you have the stats necessary to don good armor, equip powerful weapons and spells, and actually take a few hits from its biggest and baddest enemies. Runes are needed to purchase useful items from NPC vendors, too, and also to obtain unique equipment from boss Remembrances (don't forget you can duplicate Remembrances to get every reward available, by the way).

Generally, you'll get all the runes needed to progress steadily by playing normally and defeating foes and bosses, but you might need to farm for them if you're trying to get a big level boost or buy an expensive piece of gear. This process involves finding a place where you can quickly kill an enemy (or lots of enemies) that drops a high number of runes, then hightailing it back to the nearest Site of Grace to respawn it. From there, you rinse and repeat until you've got the runes you need.

There are several excellent spots for this spread across Elden Ring's vast map, but there's one that trumps the rest — especially since it's where you can do the best early and endgame rune farming. The guide below explains how to get there and what you'll need for both types of farms, so whether you're looking to power level through the early game or grind endgame levels before Elden Ring's Shadow of the Erdtree DLC releases in June, read on.

The best early rune farm in Elden Ring

The location of the Rose Church in Liurnia of the Lakes. (Image credit: Windows Central)

The best way to farm for runes in Elden Ring early, before beating the game, is incredibly easy and doesn't require much fighting, though you will need to have unlocked your trusty horse Torrent. Additionally, you'll also need to have progressed through Stormveil Castle, defeated Godrick the Grafted, and begun exploring the Liurnia of the Lakes region.

To begin, head to the Rose Church in western Liurnia of the Lakes, directly south of the Raya Lucaria Academy. There, you'll find the NPC White-Faced Varre standing next to the entrance. Approach him and speak to him until he gives you several Bloody Festering Fingers. You'll need to use three of these to invade other players' worlds. After you do this, return to Varre and accept his offer to be a member of the cult of Mohg, the Lord of Blood.

Next, Varre will ask you to soak a cloth in the blood of a maiden as a final trial. This can be achieved in several different ways, but the fastest way to do it from the Rose Church is to travel to northeastern Liurnia and take the blood of the corpse of the maiden in the Church of Inhibition. Something to be aware of, though, is that you'll need to clear the enemies from the nearby Frenzy-Flaming Tower to the church's east or else it will continuously damage you and inflict Madness; to avoid being hurt as you approach it, take cover behind rocks and other terrain whenever its "Eye of Sauron" becomes active every few seconds.

Another thing to know is that you'll be invaded by Festering Fingerprint Vyke at the church. Beating him can be quite tough if you're a low-level character, but luckily, you can despawn him by quickly resting at the Site of Grace.

Once you've soaked the cloth Varre gave you in the maiden's blood, return to him and he'll give you a Pureblood Knight's Medal. Go in your inventory and use this item, allowing it to transport you.

You'll arrive in the Mohgwyn Dynasty Mausoleum area. Run up the nearby stairs and rest at the Site of Grace there, then run back down the stairs and begin riding southeast on Torrent, following the natural pathway and avoiding all of the enemies. Eventually you'll come across the Palace Approach Ledge-Road Site of Grace on the edge of a cliff overlooking a large pool with a massive bird enemy in it. Rest at it, then equip a bow or crossbow and some arrows or bolts.

Walk a few steps north towards the sleeping enemies on the road (don't wake them up). Then, aim and fire an arrow at the bird enemy. Once it hits, the bird will aggro to you but will (ironically) fall off the edge of the landmass it's on into the abyss, giving you a whopping 11,038 runes. From here, rinse and repeat, using the Site of Grace to respawn the bird each time.

This farm is extremely efficient, as you can get the bird to fall off the edge several times per minute. In fact, it's possible to get over three million runes per hour, which is a staggering amount of experience for leveling up your character or purchasing items. And the best part is, it practically costs you nothing to use this method outside of the occasional trip to an NPC vendor to stock up on arrows or bolts.

The location of the Warmaster's Shack in Limgrave. Just south of here, you'll find five trolls that are relatively easy to kill. (Image credit: Windows Central)

If you're struggling to reach this farming location and would prefer something easier, another effective way to farm runes early is to kill the five giant trolls found just south of the Warmaster's Shack Site of Grace in the Stormhill area (shown above). The trolls drop 1,000 runes when killed and aren't too difficult to take down, making this an excellent alternative farm.

The best Elden Ring rune farm in endgame

Even after you beat Elden Ring's final boss and complete the game, you may want to farm for runes in order to continue leveling. Luckily, there's an even better farm than the one described above available to you once you're in the endgame, though it takes place in the exact same location in Mohgwyn Palace.

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It involves using the final boss' Remembrance to obtain and upgrade the Sacred Relic Sword, a Greatsword that requires 14 Strength, 24 Dexterity, and 22 Faith to use (you may need to respec your stats for it). Once you have it, go to the Palace Approach Ledge-Road Site of Grace, turn towards the nearby sleeping Albinaurics, and cast its Wave of Gold Ash of War at them. With just one or two casts, Wave of Gold will kill almost all of these enemies, giving you thousands upon thousands of runes. Like with the bird, you can then rest at the Site of Grace to respawn them all.

As the video embedded above shows, it's possible to earn runes at a jaw-dropping pace of 12 million per hour with this method if you pair it with rune-boosting items like the Gold-Pickled Fowl Foot consumable and the Gold Scarab Talisman. Note that you can also improve the efficacy of the farm by giving yourself a high Faith stat, as that's the one that affects Wave of Gold damage.

This farm is so popular that it led to the death of nearly 13 billion Albinaurics by June 2023, and I'm sure that number has only continued to swell with time. Without a doubt, this is the best way to farm more runes than you'll ever need, though it won't be available to you before you beat the final boss unless a player drops a Sacred Relic Sword for you in multiplayer.

Elden Ring is one of the best Xbox games and best PC games of all time, and I strongly recommend picking it up and beginning a playthrough now if you haven't done one already. That way, you'll have plenty of time to experience all of what 2022's Game of the Year has to offer before the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC launches on June 21. Notably, the expansion is available to preorder on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, and Windows PC now, and there's even a Collector's Edition with several awesome collectibles included.

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree | $39.99 at Xbox (Digital)

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree | $39.99 at Xbox (Digital)

Elden Ring's upcoming Shadow of the Erdtree DLC will take players to the dark and mysterious realm of the Land of Shadow, tasking them to follow in Miquella's footsteps and discover what he's doing there. Get ready for a new map, new bosses, new dungeons, and more.

Also at: Steam ($39.99, PC, Digital)

Collector's Edition: Bandai Namco Store (€249.99)

Brendan Lowry

Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.