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Elden Ring best weapons: Tier list, locations, and more

Elden Ring
Elden Ring (Image credit: Windows Central)

There are tons of useful items to find throughout Elden Ring's open world, but arguably the best tools you can collect are weapons. While the weapons you start off with are generally solid and can carry you well into a playthrough, there are plenty of incredible weapons in the Lands Between that will make your character even more effective in battle — especially when you upgrade them using Smithing Stones.

In this guide, we'll go over all of the best weapons in Elden Ring, including a tier list and a detailed breakdown of the stat requirements and locations for each of the game's top-notch armaments. Note that our list includes a wide variety of different weapon types, as different types of character builds generally require specific types of weapons.

Elden Ring: Best weapons tier list

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

While all of the weapons in Elden Ring can be incredibly effective with the right stats and plenty of upgrades, some of them are more effective than others due to their high damage numbers, effective and efficient moveset, or their unique Ash of War weapon art. To help you choose a weapon, we've created a tier list that will give you a clear idea of just how good the game's various tools of destruction are.

Note that just because a weapon isn't in the highest tier, it does not mean that they're bad. It just means that there are better options available. You can make any weapon work with the right build, so don't be afraid to try out a weapon just because it's in C tier.

SSword of Night and Flame, Golden Halberd, Banished Knight Halberd, Moonveil, Rivers of Blood, Winged Scythe, Reduvia, Misericorde, Carian Regal Scepter, Starscourge Greatsword, Greatsword, Pulley Bow, Hand Ballista
AGrafted Blade Greatsword, Gargoyle's Blackblade, Starscourge Greatsword, Longsword, Claymore, Zweihander, Uchigatana, Meteorite Staff, Dark Moon Greatsword, Great Club, Nagakiba, Black Bow
BAxe of Godrick, Vyke's War Spear, Bloody Helice, Bloodhound's Fang, Great Epee, Serpent-God's Curved Sword, Battle Hammer, Greataxe, Morning Star, Nightrider Flail, Estoc, Twinblade
CBroadsword, Short Sword, Scythe, Gargoyle's Halberd, Gargoyle's Greatsword, Rapier, Dagger, Parrying Dagger, Warpick, Spiked Club, Winged Spear, Halberd, Hand Axe, Lance, Knight's Greatsword

Elden Ring: Sword of Night and Flame location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 12, DEX 12, INT 24, FAI 24
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX E, INT D, FAI D

The Sword of Night and Flame is currently the best weapon for Intelligence/Faith hybrid builds, able to delete most bosses in the game relatively quickly with its devastating weapon art. Pressing L2 and R1 will make it shoot a devastating beam of sorcery, while L2 and R2 makes it shoot a wide arc of flames that will burn crowds of enemies to a crisp. The physical damage of the sword itself is poor, but since you shouldn't be hitting enemies with it anyway, this isn't an issue.

The Sword of Night and Flame is located within a stone tower you have to jump onto from the walkways of Caria Manor, which is located in northern Liurnia of the Lakes. The weapon will be in a chest.

Elden Ring: Greatsword location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 31, DEX 12
  • Scaling: STR C, DEX E

If you're using a Strength build, it doesn't get much better than the Greatsword. This Berserk-inspired behemoth of a weapon does fantastic damage and scales excellently with Strength when fully upgraded. It also has one of the most powerful PvP moves in the game with its "crouch poke." By crouching and then instantly light attacking, you'll perform a lightning quick thrust that's difficult for players to dodge. This move is also useful against bosses that rapidly attack and don't have many large windows of vulnerability, as the attack comes out very fast and has a short recovery animation. You can also infuse it with Ashes of War and buff it with spells, which is a nice bonus.

The Greatsword can be found in western Caelid in the back of an abandoned chariot next to the road, near a burning soldier camp. There are several large canine monsters near the chariot, so carefully dispatch of them one by one before grabbing the Greatsword.

Elden Ring: Golden Halberd location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 30, DEX 14, FAI 12
  • Scaling: STR D, DEX E, FAI D

The Golden Halberd is the best weapon in the game for players building a Strength/Faith paladin type of character, as it deals tremendous damage with a Strength/Faith build and also has the ability to buff you and your allies with extra health and damage when you use its Golden Vow weapon art. Its moveset also includes a nice variety of thrusts, slashes, and chops, making the weapon very versatile.

The Golden Halberd is awarded to you after you kill the Tree Sentinel located in Limgrave, just south of the Church of Elleh. He's one of the first enemies you can encounter in the Lands Between, but we recommend coming back for him later once you've leveled up a bit.

Elden Ring: Banished Knight's Halberd location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 14, DEX 12
  • Scaling: STR D, DEX D

If you're using a Quality build (Strength/Dexterity), the Banished Knight's Halberd will be one of the strongest weapons in the entire game for you. It scales excellently off both Strength and Dexterity when upgraded, and its default Charge Forth weapon art move is a great way to initiate combat in both PvE and PvP. Like the Golden Halberd, it also has a diverse moveset that gives it a lot of flexibility in combat.

To get the Banished Knight's Halberd, you'll have to try to get it to drop from Banished Knights in Stormveil Castle, which is located in northwestern Limgrave. Alternatively, once you do Edgar and Irina's questline in the Weeping Peninsula region, you can also get a Banished Knight's Halberd +8 from Edgar the Revenger at Revenger's Shack in western Liurnia of the Lakes.

Elden Ring: Moonveil location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 12, DEX 18, INT 23
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX D, INT C

The Moonveil is an extremely powerful katana for Dexterity/Intelligence hybrid builds that does incredible damage, builds up the Bleed status effect quickly, and features a powerful weapon art that allows its wielder to perform an instant magic slash for heavy damage (it can also hit people at range). The only other katana that comes close to matching it is the Nagakiba, which is a weapon better suited for pure Dexterity builds.

The Moonveil can be found by killing the Magma Wyrm final boss of Gael Tunnel, which is located in western Caelid. The cave is guarded by several soldiers, so you'll need to fight your way inside.

Elden Ring: Starscourge Greatsword location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 38, DEX 12, INT 15
  • Scaling: STR D, DEX D, INT E

The best weapon in Elden Ring for Strength/Intelligence builds is the Starscourge Greatsword. Not only does this weapon deal incredible physical damage, but its weapon art also allows the user to pull enemies in with gravity magic, then perform a devastating magic attack. This attack is capable of one-shotting many players in PvP, and it also flattens PvE enemies as well. The initial gravity magic pull move can also damage enemies and players through walls and floors, giving this weapon some unique utility.

To get the Starscourge Greatsword, you simply need to defeat Starscourge Radahn by participating in his "festival" at Redmane Castle, which you'll find in southeastern Caelid. You then have to use his Remembrance to create the weapon by speaking to the Finger Reader in Roundtable Hold.

Elden Ring: Winged Scythe location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 16, DEX 16, FAI 24
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX E, FAI D

This is a vicious Faith weapon that deals excellent damage and has a nasty weapon art called Angel's Wings. This move allows you to jump up into the air before swooping down on an opponent and hitting them with a devastating slash. Not only does Angel's Wings hit enemies incredibly hard, but it also prevents players from healing with a Flask of Crimson Tears for a considerable amount of time. This makes it a powerhouse weapon in PvP encounters.

To get the Winged Scythe, enter and explore the Tombsward Catacombs in western Weeping Peninsula until you find a chest in one of its rooms. That chest contains the Winged Scythe. Make sure you kill the final boss and get the Lhutel the Headless Spirit Ash Summon as well, as she's one of the best Elden Ring Spirit Summons in the game.

Elden Ring: Reduvia location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 5, DEX 13, ARC 13
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX D, ARC D

For Dexterity/Arcane builds, the Reduvia is easily one of the most powerful weapons in all of Elden Ring. Not only does it do strong damage with regular attacks, but it also does excellent bonus crit damage and inflicts Bleed on opponents quite easily. Its weapon art allows you to rapidly fire Bleed projectiles at enemies from a distance as well.

To get Reduvia, you'll need to defeat Bloody Hunter Nerijus in the river in the Limgrave river, just outside of the Murkwater Cave. Once you kill him, he'll drop the weapon.

Elden Ring: Rivers of Blood location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 12, DEX 18, ARC 20
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX D, ARC D

The Rivers of Blood is essentially the katana version of the Reduvia, as it's perfect for Dexterity/Arcane builds that want to deal a huge amount of Bleed damage in a short amount of time. Though it doesn't have the ability to fire Bleed projectiles like the Reduvia can, the Corpse Piler weapon art on the Rivers of Blood allows its user to perform several slashes in quick succession, all of which inflict huge Bleed buildup. This move is extremely strong in PvE, and in PvP, it's not uncommon for the Corpse Piler move to one-shot players that get hit by the full attack.

To get the Rivers of Blood, you'll need to kill the Bloody Finger Okina NPC that invades you to the east of the Church of Repose, which you'll find in the southern portion of the Mountaintops of the Giants.

Elden Ring: Misericorde location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 7, DEX 12
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX D

For players who love to parry and are using a Dexterity build, there's not a better weapon for riposting than the Misericorde. This absolute monster of a dagger isn't that useful in direct combat, but keeping it equipped as your secondary weapon and pulling it out when backstabbing or riposting after a parry will net you some truly insane crit damage. Its Quickstep weapon art is also useful as an enhanced dodge that can often help you survive attacks that are tough to avoid with standard dodge rolls.

To get the Misericorde, you'll need to use a Stonesword Key to unlock a room blocked by white fog in the western section of Stormveil Castle. There are two large Exile Soldiers inside, so be ready for a fight.

Elden Ring: Carian Regal Scepter location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 8, DEX 10, INT 60
  • Scaling: STR E, DEX E, INT B

While the Meteorite Staff is better for Elden Ring's early and mid-game, you should plan on using the Carian Regal Scepter once you reach 60 Intelligence with your sorcerer build. This staff provides the highest boosts to sorcery damage in the game, making it the best Elden Ring staff. The fact you need 60 Intelligence to use it means it will take a long time before you can obliterate enemies with it, but the crazy damage you can do makes it worth the wait.

You can obtain the Carian Regal Scepter by defeating Rennala, Queen of the Full Moon at the end of Raya Lucaria Academy, which is located in northern Liurnia of the Lakes. You'll then need to use her Remembrance to create the staff by speaking to the Finger Reader in Roundtable Hold.

Elden Ring: Pulley Bow location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 11, DEX 11
  • Scaling: STR D, DEX D

Want to hit enemies from afar, but aren't able to use sorceries or incantations? The Pulley Bow is your best option, as it deals great damage while also featuring the best range of all of Elden Ring's bows. It also comes with the powerful Mighty Shot weapon art that allows you to charge up an arrow that does heavy stance damage to opponents, potentially breaking their guard and staggering them.

The Pulley Bow can be found in the northeastern portion of the Mt. Gelmir region, on a corpse at the top of a large siege tower.

Elden Ring: Hand Ballista location and requirements

  • Stat requirements: STR 30, DEX 14
  • Scaling: None

If you're in need of heavy ranged firepower, the Hand Ballista is a superb option. It fires slowly and is generally easy to avoid in PvP, but anything you hit with it will take tremendous damage. It's a stellar weapon to use to pick off strong enemies from range, help allies in co-op boss fights, or kill invaders with if they're busy fighting one of your co-op partners.

The Hand Ballista can be found at the top of the Forest Lookout Tower, which is located in the northern section of the Weeping Peninsula.

Elden Ring is finally here, and it's available for $60 on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, and PC. It's one of the best Xbox games you can play right now if you're a fan of challenging RPGs, and we strongly recommend it.