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Ultimate Guide to Assassin in Dark Souls III

Ultimate Guide to Assassin in Dark Souls III

The Kingdom of Lordan is a unique yet mysterious place. You get to experience first-hand combat in one of the weirdest in-game settings possible. Despite all such hardships, the game gives you the ability to classify into multiple classes and build paths. 

While every game includes Assassins one way or another, you would be surprised to feel the subtle yet noticeable difference that the mentioned class entails in Dark Souls III.

The Assassin follows a sneaky yet promising playstyle. The main premise is to mix sorcery with hand-to-hand combat. This achieves the perfect balance for dishing out short bursts of damage against an opponent. 

However, the class is not limited to simple attacking. In fact, you’d be surprised to know how much outplay potential an Assassin usually possesses. Therefore, it is essential to learn the inner workings of an Assassin for an easier gameplay progression.

How to Obtain Assassin

ARPGs usually make it extremely time-consuming or difficult for a player to unlock classes. However, FromSoftware seems to think otherwise. All the ten classes of the game are unlockable at the time of character creation.

Therefore, it is rather easy to obtain the Assassin as your main class. While the Assassin class is extremely useful in the early game, its range and flexibility are rather limited. Needless to say, it is possible to obtain good scores on an Assassin by effectively utilizing Dex-based weapons.
Therefore, we recommend you obtain the class early on in order to progress smoothly throughout the game.

Effective Assassin Combat

Aiming to achieve maximum efficiency on an Assassin is rather simple. However, you need to weave magic damage with your melee attacks for effective DPS. Needless to say, you will be reliant on your agility and movement speed. 

Therefore, negating damage is not one of the strengths of this class. Despite having unconventional combat mechanics, an Assassin is still considered one of the easier classes to play. 

Make sure to wait for chances to counterattack during combat since the class excels in returning damage rather than taking it. With that said, you still hold a bit of flexibility to pursue a tankier path as a bonus damage trade-off.

Assassin Essential Steps

Unlike simplistic classes like the Warrior or the Knight, an Assassin follows more of an advanced route. You could proceed as a sneaky rat or be a disciplined striker – the main pathway is the same. 

With that said, it is recommended to commit early on with DEX builds. However, the chosen classes usually have a minimal effect on the overall advent of the game. Therefore you can choose to sub into multiple customizations – Including a possible healing build. 

Despite being uncanny, the potency of such paths is nothing to scoff at. It won’t hurt if you can get as close to the 70% equip load on an Assassin. However, speed is an essential factor to account for while configuring your Assassin character. 

The Assassin might not be the best choice against multiple enemies because of the apparent single target damage. Therefore, you need to spec accordingly. 

Furthermore, you can also focus on your sorcery paths to work on a hybrid model. While it might feel needlessly confusing at first, the potential is limitless – especially in the later portions of the game. 

That being said, your should try to use your backstabs as much as possible. The cornerstone ability of an Assassin lies within its stealth and sneak attacks. Therefore, we recommend you try to take fights on your terms rather than blatantly charging in on any enemy within a visible range.

Moreover, you can equip a certain amount of weight and resistance without hindering the playmaking potential of an Assassin. However, exceeding limits can come with its own set of repercussions, so it is better to stay below the 70% weight threshold no matter what. 

As a whole, the Assassin class is quite nimble and can be a huge asset against certain enemies and bosses. While that does not directly account for better survivability, the best offense is still considered the best defense.

Best Assassin Builds

Due to it being an advanced class, the Assassin builds are rather restrained to a single focal point. Therefore, it can be tough to find innovation in such restricted boundaries. However, it is still possible to maximize a certain stat to work accordingly with your strengths and weaknesses. 

With that said, the silent yet deadly Assassin deserves more love when it comes to its builds. However, there are certain ones that are proven to be a cut above the rest. We will be mentioning the top brass among them below:

Cheeseburger Assassin Build

Despite the weird name, the build is specifically made for beginners that are unaware of the ins and outs of playing Assassin. While that premise is rather simple, the build is actually designed quite carefully to match or exceed the current potential cap of a regular Assassin.

Attributes

The Cheeseburger Assassin build focuses on bumping the attack damage to extremes. Since you would only need a single shot to kill the enemy. Therefore, it is quite easy to abuse it according to the enemy’s detection range. 

Simply hit it and move out so the aggro can reset. Similarly, sorcery spells can also be used if you invest some points into INT. Needless to say, your strength stat should be able to carry you around for the greater portion of the game. 

As it might be evident, investing wholeheartedly in strength (and intelligence at times) can make your character extremely squishy. To prevent yourself from being this susceptible to death, one needs to invest a small chunk in vitality. 

Alternatively, you can also don a lot of armor to gain resistance against multiple attacks. However, it will make your movements slower, thereby letting your attack motion be dodgeable. 

Needless to say, no matter how strong an attack it, it will be all for naught if it doesn’t hit the intended target. Therefore, carefully plan ahead until and unless you achieve a good balance between Strength and Intelligence.

Equipment and Armor

  • Silver Eagle Kite Shield
  • Hawk Ring
  • Hornet Ring

While you don’t need to particularly invest in the armor stat, it is still recommended to dual wield a shield along with a proper weapon. The reason is quite simple, you won’t have enough Vigor to tank a boss’s attacks like child play, and that’s where the shield comes in.

The Silver Eagle Kite Shield is a good shield to keep due to its low stat requirements. However, you may choose to pick a stronger option if you desire. You will gain an average block of 53% by equipping Silver Eagle Kite Shield. 

The Hawk Ring can be used to increase the overall range of your bows and crossbows, thereby making your sniping even deadlier. With that said, you also obtain the ability to zoom in and out while aiming –  which can further add to the overall experience.

The Hornet Ring can increase the critical damage by 30%. Since attributes like lethality don’t play a major part in Dark Souls 3, you can expect Critical Hit to be your best bet. The mentioned value of the Hornet Ring can change according to the motion values of certain mechanics. Therefore, your damage might vary.

Spells

While spellcasting is a large part of what makes an Assassin, this build focuses more on the physical damage aspect. Therefore, it would be hard to find spells that synergize well with it. Needless to say, you can imbue your weapons with buff-based spells like Sacred Oath or Lightning Blade. However, these might require your Faith to be a certain standard. Therefore, it is recommended to mix and match till you find what’s correct for you. 

As for the stealth-based spells, you can use  Chameleon and Hidden Body for evading visual detection. Once again, you need to have your Intelligence up to a certain level to use such spells, so it is better to put the least emphasis on spells for this build. 

Dexterity and Strength Assassin Build

This is a textbook build in Dark Souls 3 that has the potential to carry even the toughest battle with the least possible effort. With that said, there are certain requirements you need to remember to make this build work. 

Related: How to Farm Large Titanite Shards in Dark Souls 3 (3 Ways)

Therefore, get ready to deal with an immense amount of damage. As the name suggests, your vitality will still remain at a steep low, so you will have to dodge quite a lot of enemy attacks to not die an instant death.

Attributes

Maintaining a basic ratio of 40 Strength to 40 Dexterity is mandatory for this build to truly shine. Other than that, you have the choice to increase your Int or Faith stars, but they will be quite irrelevant for what’s about to come. 

Aside from the Assassin, this build is also viable on Mercenary, Knight, or Warriors. However, that does not make it as flexible as one might prefer. That is because investing in anything other than Strength and Dexterity makes you lose a huge amount of damage. 

The raw stat difference might not seem much at first glance. However, you are essentially using a lot of bonus damage due to the modifiers attached to your equipment and weapons. 

With that said, you can rely on these attributes in the early and late-game scenarios. Therefore, beating bosses or killing enemies, in general, might not seem as tough as it usually is.

Equipment and Armor

  • Sun Princess Ring
  • Leo Ring
  • Chloranthy Ring

Since you are not aiming for a high level of defense or vigor, it is recommended to build some sort of sustain to counter that weakness. The Sun Princess Ring helps restore Hp at the basic rate of 2 per second. 

While this might not seem like much, you are not always in combat. Therefore, even a little sustain can heal you to full HP for your next battle. Furthermore, the ring is fully stackable with items like Ancient Dragon Greatshield to provide an additional 2 HP per second.

As we’ve mentioned before, this build mostly revolves around counterattacking and landing your crits. Therefore, the Leo ring can be a huge asset as it strengthens the counterattack of thrust-based weapons along with lowering the thrust defenses by 30%. 

Lastly, you can use the Chloranthy Ring to complete your build. The wide array of moments can deplete stamina rather quickly, so a gradual increase in stamina recovery is extremely important

Spells

This build is highly reliant on spells to dish out damage. Since Faith works best with only a few attributes and equipment, it is better to rank up your spells instead. With that said, here are the spells that utilize this build exceptionally well:

  • Darkmoon Blade: The Darkmoon Blade is a miracle-type spell that buffs your weapon to deal bonus elemental damage. While the damage output is fairly decent, the requirements of using it are not. Therefore, you will need to invest a bit in Faith to make this work.
    With that said, the magic damage is equal to spell buff * 0.95 and can be used to buff your counterattacks. While the scaling is more reliant on Faith, it is still a great pell t change the nature of your attacks accordingly to the enemy type. 
  • Lifehunt Scythe: Similar to the Lightning Blade, the Sacred Oath is also used to boost attack damage. However, it can be considered a multi-purpose buff due to its group effect. An overall multiplicative increase of 10% is a great deal especially when you’re getting a 10.0 absorption as well.
    With that said, the duration of this buff is 60 seconds. Therefore, make sure to benefit while it lasts. 
  • Way of White Corona: This one is a miracle-based spell that makes the player throw a boomerang that will return to the player. The damage numbers scale accordingly with a spell buff on a 0.85 multiplier.
    Needless to say, the spell is rather situational. However, it does a good job of mitigating your little to no area of effect damage and can help you fight better against multiple enemies. The dealt damage is completely physical, so it will be quite easy to make good use of it.
    As it suggests, the spell is completely ranged and can hit multiple enemies within the boomerang trajectory. The total FP for this miracle is 15, which makes it rather spammable (if the opportunity arises).
  • Lightning Arrow: Since the build focuses more on single-shot damage, it won’t be a bad idea to incorporate elemental magic with it. While the FP requirements for this spell are relatively high, it can offer great damage bonuses.
    In fact, the damage multiplier for this one is 1.6 with the spell buff damage. Therefore, using this spell on your borderline lethal shots can seal the deal against most enemies.
    Furthermore, you can hold the spell for as long as you want by pressing the button down. Therefore, you will have ample time to aim against moving targets – given you’re not already in the battle against them.

Needless to say, this build will not focus that much on the spells, since they work on the basis of Stamina and Faith. While these are not the stats you want to invest heavily into, some of them can yield pretty nicely. Furthermore, the Lightning Arrow complements this build rather well. Therefore, consider investing in it if you have stat points to spare.

The Best Overall Options for Assassin Builds

An Assassin is a simple yet constrained class. Therefore, you are not presented with that many upgrade paths in the first place. Needless to say, the given ones are not bad in any way and might even top the best present in certain other classes. 

With that said, you should aim to specialize in raw physical damage or you can choose to follow a hybrid model. Consequently, it is also possible to build like a mage in the said class. However, the mentioned builds are proven to work better in that scenario.

Innovation is never bad, and it is possible to create a better-suited build for yourself. Therefore, don’t hesitate to experiment until you reach a good balance between suitability and practicality. That being said, we recommend you try going for Dexterity and Strength-based builds since they’re usually known to work best for the Assassin class. 

You won’t have to worry much about these classes since they’re most needed for the early game portions. However, getting maximum efficiency is always welcome as long as it improves your survival rates by even 0.001%.

Wrap Up

All in all, the Assassin is generally suited for battle-hardened veterans instead of newbies. However, that does not mean newbies can’t play it no matter what. With that said, you would need to perform a bit of build optimization for getting the most out of the Assassin class. 

Alternatively, you can try exploring more about the class through various playthroughs, given that you’re planning to main it in the PvP. Backstabbing and Counter-attacking are the main strengths of this class. Therefore, make sure to utilize them as much as possible.