From Software games never ceases to amaze with their wide array of weapons and the freedom to create a build of your specific taste. This is most evident in their latest outing Elden Ring as the choice has literally gone through the roof to the point of feeling cumbersome when deciding which type of build one should go for.
This time around, Magic and Sorcery, i.e. Intelligence, is a very viable choice from previous From Software games when making a build. Apart from the trusty Staff in your left hand to cast spells there are a bunch of weapons that use a mix of Physical and Magical damage and scale with the Intelligence stat.
Some have amazing magic-based Ash of War skills that synergizes with the overall build while others scale off the stat much potently.
The best Intelligence scaling weapons we have come across and researched in Elden Ring are:
- Royal Greatsword
- Wing of Astel
- Moonveil Katana
- Dark Moon Greatsword
- Death’s Poker
When going for an Intelligence-based build in Elden Ring one should be aware of the following things:
- Intelligence stat in Elden Ring bore the most fruit i.e. scaling when it is leveled up to its soft cap thresholds which are from level 20 to 50 with some marginal gains to level 80. In the case of this article, Intelligence weapons for builds, we advise that you level up INT to 50 and upgrade other stats down the line like Vigor or Mind, etc.
- At level 99 Intelligence you are hard-capped and can’t go any further, dumping points to reach this level is never recommended as the return on investment is so futile and useless after level 80.
- Three of the weapons mentioned here will be acquired through Ranni’s questline, which you can follow along with the below mentioned video guide:
If you happen to run into Blaidd you might have seen this Colossal Sword on his back and if you are like me you might have considered killing this GOOD BOY just to get our grubby little hands on this exquisite weapon, but don’t do it! Blaidd actually does not end up dropping this sword, and you’ll just end up making a very powerful NPC into your enemy. This weapon is for builds that are aiming for a more Strength and Intelligence hybrid playstyle. The base stats required to wield this weapon along with the scaling is mentioned in the table below:
|Royal Greatsword Stats||Base Requirements||Base Scaling||Best Scaling after Upgrades (+10)|
As you can see, the base Stats to carry this weapon are spread out in STR, DEX, and INT. For STR, you can two-hand wield it to lower the requirements, and as mentioned above you can upgrade your INT to level 50 for the best result. The weapon can achieve a great Attack Power number with a mixture of Physical and Magic owing to stat distribution in STR and INT from your side. It can only be upgraded with the Somber Smithing Stones.
This weapon has a Colossal Weapon move set which has a very hard-hitting and slow combo collection that most people enjoy pulling off. And the most satisfying part of this weapon is the Wolf’s Assault Ash of War it has on as default, this skill lets the player somersault towards the enemy plunging their sword to the ground and infusing it with Frost and a second attack that leads to an explosion around the player.
This Ash of War does suffer from a long animation while somersaulting, though you do get hyper armor while executing it meaning you receive lesser damage, if you time it right you can inflict insane damage especially if you land both hits. The reach of the explosion is deceptively great that unsuspecting duelers can be baited easily.
This weapon is obtainable at the end of Ranni’s questline where Blaidd will be at Ranni’s Rise, the location marked below. He will become hostile when you are near him so get ready to fight and once defeated he will reward you with Royal Greatsword and Blaidd’s Armor set.
You can follow the quest with the video posted above.
Wing Of Astel
A magical weapon shaped like an insect wing and named and themed after the hideous Astel, Naturalborn of the Void boss. This curved sword is perfect for Dexterity and Intelligence builds. The base stats required to wield this weapon along with the scaling is mentioned in the table below:
|Wing Of Astel Stats||Base Requirements||Base Scaling||Best Scaling after Upgrades (+10)|
The focal stats to upgrade here are DEX and INT with the scaling reaching a solid rating of “B” for Intelligence at upgrade level +10, giving great output for leveling up your INT stat. An equal distribution in DEX and INT around level 50 each will result in the most beneficial Attack Power. The weapon also features some distinct aspects. It can only be upgraded with the Somber Smithing Stones.
The damage number potential and uniqueness are most evident in its Heavy Attack (R2/RT). The heavy attack sends out magic projectiles at a short distance and if you charge it then you can fire off two, and the best part is it doesn’t cost any FP so you can keep punishing your PVP or PVE opponents from a distance.
The cherry on top is that Nebula Ash of War it comes with. This skill will perform a slash that spreads stardust of sorts in a horizontal area in front of you which detonates afterward. The actual slash does not damage but the explosion will hurt a lot, especially considering it has the potential to hit twice in a single spread, perfect for dealing with large enemies. You can easily dupe PVP players to panic with the Nebula explosion and follow it up with the Heavy ranged attack.
The second weapon related to Ranni’s quest, once you have made it to the upper section of Ainsel River and at the Nokstella, Eternal City grace site, turn back and move along the side cliffs to make your way to the area marked on the map below. There will be a chest on top of some ruins seen in the picture below. If you have done the lower area of Ainsel River you might remember the giant ant-type enemy that throws boulders at you in this location.
Channel the inner Magical Samurai Jack in you with this crazy Katana. Another weapon for the Dexterity and Intelligence builds out there and the best one for I am biased towards this as it’s my main weapon and made me feel like a boss that Elden Ring had to face. The base stats required to wield this weapon along with the scaling is mentioned in the table below:
|Moonveil Stats||Base Requirements||Base Scaling||Best Scaling after Upgrades (+10)|
This weapon achieves a “B” rating in Intelligence quite early on while upgrading hence is best at dishing out crazy damage numbers. Though you will benefit from DEX level allocations in my testing leveling INT only can also show some great damage numbers. It can only be upgraded with the Somber Smithing Stones.
If you have played with the Uchigatana in this game then you will be aware of the Katana move set that is quick and deadly both one-handed and two. And like the Uchi, this too has Blood loss buildup, and considering Hemorrhage or Bleed is an insane damage dealer it’s nice to have it as a passive. Even a basic Katana combo is enough to deal with many PVP and PVE situations. A good skill and katana hits at the same time will stagger most enemies and open them up for a Critical strike.
The actual shiny feature of this weapon is the Transient Moonlight Ash of War. It is the same as Unsheathe but instead of basic slashes from the sheathe stance, there are magic-based projectiles that shoot out of these slashes. From the sheathe stance the light attack or R1 has a horizontal and short-range projectile while the strong attack or R2 is a vertical and long-range one. They both go through targets so you can line up enemies and take them out instantly. And the sheer speed of executing this skill is downright criminal where you can just pull it off in most cases on a whim. The R2 attack is the primary attack you should use the most.
Make your way to the Gael Tunnel mine on the edge of the Caelid region. Complete the mine and defeat the boss Magma Wyrm to be rewarded with the Moonveil katana. The location is marked on the map below.
Dark Moon Greatsword
The infamous From Software’s Moonlight Greatsword is also known as Dark Moon Greatsword in Elden Ring with its Ash of War having the iconic name. Though a greatsword this has a very minimum requirement for the Strength stat and is considered more of an Intelligence only weapon. The base stats required to wield this weapon along with the scaling is mentioned in the table below:
|Dark Moon Greatsword Stats||Base Requirements||Base Scaling||Best Scaling after Upgrades (+10)|
This weapon gets a “B” rating at just +4 upgrade level and is safe to say that INT really compliments this greatsword, with the other two stats having a very minimal effect on the whole. It can only be upgraded with the Somber Smithing Stones. As a greatsword its a fine weapon with a Frost buildup but its true potential comes with its Moonlight Greatsword moniker.
The Ash of War on this weapon is the legendary Moonlight Greatsword buff, when activated it consumes 40 FP and gives it a cosmic aesthetic, it infuses the sword with Frost and increases its damage scalable further with the INT stat. With it activated you can now send out hard-hitting Frost projectiles by holding the heavy attack R2, these don’t cost any FP after the initial activation and can be used unlimited times until the skill runs out.
This skill and R2 charge projectiles do take some time to get activated and fire which leaves you vulnerable for a time but the range is great and with PVE most enemies and bosses are staggered with just two of the projectiles landing on them. And with PVP you can keep your foes in check with just a few hits and they will be panicking trying to save their HP. Talismans like Shard of Alexander can further boost the damage of these projectiles.
The last weapon in this list related to Ranni’s quest and it’s a special one as this weapon is the reward for completing the whole quest. The exact video is posted at the top of this article. At the very end of the quest, you will have to make your way to the Cathedral of Manus Celes, and the Dark Moon Greatsword will be rewarded for marrying Ranni. Trying not to spoil anything here.
It says it’s a greatsword but I refuse to accept that, it doesn’t look like a sword. Oh well, we can’t do anything now only unleash its deathly damage. Another relatively accessible weapon stat requirement. Though this weapon is not revered for its Intelligence scaling there are other ghostly reasons to go for it. The base stats required to wield this weapon along with the scaling is mentioned in the table below:
|Death’s Poker Stats||Base Requirements||Base Scaling||Best Scaling after Upgrades (+10)|
Looking at the stat sheet above you might be wondering why is this weapon even in this Intelligence weapon list. The requirements are low and even after upgrading the ratings don’t shoot up like others on this list. It can only be upgraded with the Somber Smithing Stones.
So to get the basics out of the way this has the greatsword move set which is one of the best you can use in Elden Ring and the ease of getting this weapon and stat requirement is just icing. To get the most out of this weapon upgrade the Dexterity stat rather than Intelligence, which should be kept at 15. Also the Frost passive it has is another layer of frosting.
The real cake of this weapon is in the Ash of War Ghostflame Ignition. Just activating it pokes the enemy and creates an orb of black flame which has an explosion, this fire has a frost build-up. Now the pièce de résistance comes with the follow-up attacks you can execute with the black flame orb. You can R1 or light attack it to create a line of fire in front of you which you can even direct, and it stays and burns the ground for a short while which constantly damages enemies and make areas inaccessible in PVP.
You can also R2 heavy attack the orb to create a giant explosion that hurts anyone in the radius. So, depending on the distance of your enemy and their numbers you can utilize the best option, this gives you a wide variety of choices in certain situations.
The initial black flame orb does damage to any enemy in contact and applies frost build-up which when procs deal great damage and you can further deal more damage if you choose to execute any of the two follow-up attacks. This dastardly cake is insane!
A very easy approach to this weapon, just visit the south of the Sellia Town main entrance in Caelid at night where a Death Rite Bird will be roaming, the exact location is marked on the map. Depending on your level this boss can be a menace so approach with caution. Kill the bird and get yourself the Death’s Poker.
That’s all we had for the 5 best Intelligence Build Weapons currently in Elden Ring. Stay tuned for more!