Dark Souls 3 is the fourth installment of the Souls series and the final part of the Dark Souls trilogy. It is an action game that is played from a third-person perspective. It starts pretty quickly and smoothly compared to the first two parts of the Dark Souls trilogy. The difficulty of the game increases quite fast as well. The linear world opens into a twisting, confusing, and challenging maze.
Where should you go? What should you do? What kind of weapons should you have? These are only a few of the questions that will come to your mind while trying to progress ahead. This game will test your skills and determination, and it is very punishing. But there are a few things that might make your journey a bit more reasonable.
The way you build your character will strongly impact your overall performance on Dark Souls 3. A Knight build is a way to go for a definite progression through the game and primarily through the game’s most challenging areas.
The Knight Build
You can begin by selecting the ‘Knight’ as your beginning class. It will start you off with a good balance of melee-oriented stats. The other Magic-focused classes do not prove advantageous for the game’s progression due to less intelligence and faith scaling.
The other melee starting classes do not suffer as much as they begin with a little less than the preferable equipment needed. The Knight classes do not suffer from these shortcomings that might be frustrating later in the game.
The starting stats of the Knight class provides you with a higher health pool and damage reduction that will help you in combat and prevent you from getting one-hit knocked out by large enemies or special attacks.
Your low capacity for intelligence, faith, and luck will benefit you as it will make sure there are no points wasted in magic-oriented gameplay and items unless, of course, you decide to do it yourself.
The Knight class is designed to be highly adaptable in various situations and how to handle them. The shield will allow you to block strong attacks from enemies while you take your time to understand their fighting patterns. It will also stop arrows shot your way.
The Knight can roll around as well despite having a large armor and shield. Its weight is between medium to heavy, which allows him to roll around with ease. This ability proves to be helpful and necessary for boss battles. Make sure you swap your long sword to two-handed when you are not blocking blows from the enemy. This will allow you to deliver most damage output as possible.
Selecting the Knight class will start you off with a Long sword. It is a weapon with preferable attack animations and can be upgraded later to deal severe damage. It can be transitioned between being held in one hand or two hands.
This weapon is fantastic in the long run and will be of great help during the early parts of the game until you find better, more potent weaponry. In short, do not bother to upgrade this weapon.
Other than the Long sword, the Knight also comes with a Knight Shield that has 100% damage reduction when used to block attacks and has a considerable amount of weight. It is considered one of the best shields in the entire game. The other starting classes have to wait until over six hours to get something remotely as useful and competitive as this.
The Knight class also provides you with Knight Armor, which is considered one of the best armor sets in the game. It is based on a balance between physical defense, medium-weight requirements, and magic reduction. This complete set alone will last you over fifteen hours in the game and has no competition in the weight range.
Spending your stats wisely is very important throughout the game. Here are the best stats to place your hard-earned points into:
Vigor and Strength
Prioritizing vigor and strength is a smart move. Vigor will give you a large health pool that will help you to survive in bad scenarios. Strength will be your damage attribute, and it will boost the damage you deal by a lot.
Placing points in endurance is what you will want to do as it will increase stamina, and you will surely need a lot of stamina. You will often find yourself out of stamina when rolling, blocking, and doing combos. Placing more points in endurance will help you reduce stress by increasing your stamina pool. You need to aim for 18 to 20 minimum points in endurance at the very early stages of the game.
Vitality is an important stat in the game. Placing points into the vitality stat will enable you to carry heavy-weight armors and weapons. The most powerful and damage-dealing weapons in the game are heavy, and the heaviness might hinder your rolling ability, especially if you hit 70% encumbrance. Increasing vitality will reduce this effect and help to keep your agility.
Placing points in dexterity is totally up to you if you like dexterity or quality-based weaponry. Strength is a good choice as it acts as your primary damage stat, and you will have enough damage with any weapon. But as everyone has their weapon taste, you can focus your damage points on dexterity if you want to carry dexterity-based weapons.
Another option could be finding a balance between the two stats if you want to go on with a quality build. You can also use a gem to make a weapon with different stat bonuses, but its stat requirements to wield around will not change.
You can consider placing points in faith to support melee with clerical powers. Although magic is not very practical unless you decide to put points into a stat, faith can be a handy secondary stat if you like to use holy power in the game.
Spending your stats depends purely on what weapon you want to use. You can prefer weapons of strength (like the butcher’s knife) or a quality weapon that incorporates dexterity and strength equally in its base bonus (like the Sellsword Twinbaldes).
Most of the weapons can have customized stat bonuses, and in a lot of cases, what matters is adding enough of a tertiary stat so that you can use a weapon and then boosting stats into the primary bonus stat (strength). Let us assume that you want to go for a strong build.
Remember that it is your choice how many points you want to place in dexterity and strength depending on what weapon and what type of bonuses you are going for.
- Level: 30
- Vigor: 18
- Attunement: 10
- Endurance: 17
- Vitality: 15
- Strength: 22 (Optional)
- Dexterity: 12 (Optional)
- Intelligence: 9
- Faith: 9
- Luck: 7
Continue to go for the following stats by soul level 50 if you are following a strength build.
- Level: 50
- Vigor: 26
- Attunement: 10
- Endurance: 20
- Vitality: 16
- Strength: 30 (Optional)
- Dexterity: 12 (Optional)
- Intelligence: 9
- Faith: 9
- Luck: 7
Your priority right now to place points in is vigor. As soon as your vigor reaches around 35 to 40, it would help if you considered putting more points in the Vitality stat as you will need it to carry heavier weaponry and armor. You will also require upgrading your Estus Flask because if you have a large pool of health, it is only effective if the Estus Flask can heal you up to total health fast enough without using it multiple times.
How you balance Vigor, Vitality, and Endurance depends on how many Estus Flask upgrades you have gotten from mid to late game. Heavy armors used to be quite effective in the last two parts of Dark Souls, but they do not prove to be as effective, but they do provide good damage reduction.
A lot of strength-oriented weapons are great axes and greatswords. They are generally slow to attack and heavy.
The Knight’s Long sword is a perfect and effective weapon, especially early in the game. It is pretty reliable and has fast attack patterns. The only drawback is that it becomes outclassed quite fast by the weapons that have higher damage potential.
It is recommended that you pick up the Broadsword as soon as you reach the High Wall of Lothric. It has capabilities identical to the Long sword, but the only difference being the more significant damage for Broadsword.
From this point on, you can decide to upgrade the Broadsword and add properties of your choice to it. You can also transition it to the Irithyll Straight Sword as soon as you reach the later part of Undead Settlement.
This weapon also has similar attack patterns to that of the Long sword and the Broadsword. Still, it has a natural Frostbite property that allows it to reduce the stamina of enemies significantly.
This weapon proves to be reasonably practical and very useful against many final bosses of the game, and it alone will last you the entire game, especially if you like the quick attacks of straight swords. It is very powerful, considering how fast its attacks are.
It requires Twinkling Titanite to upgrade it, which can be a bit frustrating to collect as it is a rare item, and it cannot get the perks of bonus damage from things like Gold Pine Resin.
If you like heavier-hitting weapons, you would like to pick up the Claymore found at the fire-breathing dragon in High Wall of Lothric. This weapon is a lightweight greatsword that can be used in however transition you want, that is both in one-handed or two-handed battle.
Heavier weapons are a bit more challenging to wield due to their long animations, but many players prefer the two-handed style of gameplay.
It would help if you also considered the Uchigatana, a parry-style weapon which is also the game’s one of the popular choices. The Butcher’s Knife is also a great solid choice that can heal you as you battle and kill your enemies.
The Depp Battle Axe is very effective and suitable for most games for people who like axes. Arstor’s Spear is also an excellent choice for people who want to go for a spear weapon.
As you continue to place points in the Vitality stat near the end parts of the game, you can decide to transition into an ultra greatsword like the Zweihander or a big hammer.
If you prefer a dexterity-based weapon, you can continue to focus points on the dexterity stat instead of the strength stat. Or you can alter a dexterity-based weapon by infusing it with a gem to change its bonuses.
You may find it quite surprising that the starting armor for the Knight may last you for the entire game. Knight armor outshines most of the sets in terms of damage reduction, and basically, anything with higher defense needs a lot more weight (Vitality). Moreover, the Knight’s Shield has 100% damage reduction on the block and a significant amount of stats that allow you to carry it throughout the game without a lot of competition.
Knight Armor is very powerful, but as you further progress in the game, you may realize that the average damage reduction on the armor might be reducing your performance in the game.
Or sometimes, you might want something with a new look. If you are thinking about having heavier armor, you will want to trade in a Soul of a Stray Dragon (an item that is obtained from a mini-boss inside the Farron Keep). You might also need to increase a few more points in the Vitality stat.
An upgrade you will find is the Lothric Knight Set. This will drop off Lothric Knights. Each piece has a slight drop rate, so you will want to use a rusted coin to increase item discovery when farming the set. This set has better physical damage reduction, poise, and tolerance for magic than a regular Knight set.
Once you are halfway through the game, you can farm the Silver Knight Set from Silver Knights. This gear is an upgrade from the Lothric Knight Set as it has less weight and has better capabilities in general. You can also consider farming the Cathedral Knight Set or the Gundyr’s Set when you are mid to late game. You can also purchase the Exil Armor Set.
All three of these armors have high weight requirements so having increased vitality is a priority to wear these armors and use your rolling ability. Finally, Havel’s Set armor is weighty and protective and a grand prize for the players with high points in vitality.
The shield is also one of the critical factors in the game for the Knight class. The first upgrade for your shield is not earned until the last hours of the game, and that too has similar attributes. Golden Wing Crest Shield is the name of the upgraded shield you might acquire, even though the starter shield lasts you for the entirety of the game.
But if you are a big fan of making your shield a big part of your build, then you can consider looking at the list of great shields in the game, a few of which will let you perform weapon skills when equipped.
Magic stat in Dark Souls 3 isn’t entirely useful for lower levels. Many players have realized that you need to place almost 45 to 50 points into Intelligence or Faith to make your powers useful enough for progression.
Due to this, the strength Knight build does not go well with the magic build as it will finally require too many points to become reliable. It is totally up to you how you place your points while keeping this in mind.
The suggested builds are for the players looking for a simple but effective build to play the game with. It might not be for everyone, but this guide is for you if you are starting the game and looking for direction.
For experienced players, this guide leaves room for dexterity or quality that they prefer or want to include faith-based abilities into their builds. In short, this guide will enable the players to have a more pleasant experience with the game when they go in prepared and have a sense of what they want to do and how to do it.