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The monsters found throughout the Lands Between in are ferocious. You’ll find yourself licking your wounds at a Site of Grace more often than not. We’ve prepared these Elden Ring tips to give you a leg up on the NPC competition in FromSoftware’s latest game.

These tips will help you get off the ground with an early advantage. They aren’t foolproof, though. You’ll still need to time your rolls, seek out the best gear and learn the movements of every enemy in order to best them.

Elden Ring tips to make the most out of your time in the Lands Between

You’ll begin Elden Ring by creating a character, choosing a class and diving into the opening area of Limgrave.

1. Start with a class that specializes in ranged attacks

Melee builds in FromSoftware games almost always have to be tanks, unless you’re a seasoned veteran who knows how to block and roll like a certified professional. Ranged abilities, including bows and magic, are incredibly useful in every fight within the game.

Classes with viable ranged abilities include Samurai, Prisoner, Astrologer and Confessor. Any can be viable, but the Samurai and Confessor are the best for newcomers due to how well-rounded they can be. Pick up the Astrologer if you want to focus on magic, though.

2. Find and summon Spirit Ashes early

One surefire way to handle most enemies in Elden Ring is to simply overwhelm them with whatever you can throw at them. Spirit Ashes, AI-controlled ghosts that fight alongside you, are one thing that you can use. Head to the Church of Elleh at night in the early hours of the game to get the Spirit Calling Bell and the first Spirit Ash you can use in battle. You’ll find more as you progress throughout the game.

Elden Ring
A Kale the Merchant location where he sells a strong shield. | Provided by Bandai Namco

3. Head East for a strong shield

Kale the Merchant can be found at several locations throughout the map and he has a different set of wares wherever he is. You can find the Blue-Gold Kite Shield on the far eastern section of the map, just south of the Minor Erd Tree. Here’s an exact location:

Elden Ring Shield
The Blue-Gold Kite Shield. | Provided by Bandai Namco

This shield gives 100 damage negation, stopping all damage unless your stance is broken.

4. Bone Darts are a key ranged weapon

Ranged attacks are key in Elden Ring, and magic and arrows aren’t the only ways to attack from a distance. Bone Darts are a quick and easy way to get small bits of damage in between sword and ax blows. They can be crafted with Thin Beast Bones found on the bodies of the defenseless Animals scattered across the map.

Elden Ring Bone Dart
The Bone Dart crafting recipe. | Provided by Bandai Namco

You can craft five darts with every two bones you pick up and you can carry 40 in your inventory (600 in your storage). These are great side weapons for any fight. You will run out of them easily, so be sure to do some hunting before each big fight.

5. Play conservatively whenever possible

Elden Ring is about one thing at its core: patience. Learning the moves of each enemy is about learning the exact moment to roll and dodge their blow. It can be tempting to go for as many blows as possible in those moments.

You should hold tight, take the 1-2 hits the enemy gives you and then back off. Some enemies can kill you with a few blows so you need to reduce the chance of them getting hit whenever possible.

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