ELDEN RING – PVE Sorcery Progression Guide

I am writing this guide to provide a quick reference on playing a sorcery user through a fresh run of Elden Ring. All advice below is, of course, just advice, and not something that you must follow.

Guide to PVE Sorcery Progression

By Toraso

Starting class

Astrologer is unsurprisingly ideal for almost all sorcery variants throughout PvE.

Levelling Your Stats

A sorcery user is unique among all of the kinds of starting character archetypes in ER in that you can get reasonable scaling from, essentially, the start of the game; this is accomplished by riding over to Caelid and acquiring the Meteorite Staff, which cannot be upgraded but has high sorcery scaling inherently.

This skews the levelling priority for stats away from Vigor being by far the best option; sorceries are the best way to maintain safety during fights (thanks to their high range, good damage efficiency, and fast cast times), and with scaling being decent from the start, you can opt to put points into Intelligence and Mind for a few dozen levels before returning to Vigor. I highly encourage you to get at least 40 Vigor before increasing your Intelligence past 60.

You’ll eventually want to have at least 40 Vigor, relevant softcaps for your spell tool (generally 60 or 80 INT) and enough Mind to comfortably make it to the next Grace or to kill a boss; I find that ~30 Mind is more than enough for even the most FP intensive parts of the game. Feel free to have less than 30 Mind, especially if you are using FP regeneration methods such as Sacrificial Axe or Ancestral Spirit’s Horn.

Melee Weapon Choices

Your melee weapon, with a few exceptions, is going to be drastically weaker in combat than your sorceries. Carian Slicer in particular is better than most melee weapons you could otherwise use. Because of this, the best thing to do is opt for a melee weapon that enhances your ability to use sorceries: Sacrificial Axe regenerates a small amount of FP every time an enemy is killed and can be accessed very early in the game in the Weeping Peninsula.

You don’t even need to have the stat requirements for the weapon, only to have it visible on your character for the FP regain to work. For situations where FP is not really a concern, I recommend having a spell tool out that boosts one of your sorcery types instead (remember that just having them out increases sorcery damage- you don’t need to cast using them!).

If you really want to attack with a melee weapon, Sacrificial Axe is alright for this purpose- put it on Magic or Cold and it will have decent damage, but drastically weaker compared to your sorceries. For real damage from your melee weapons, you’ll need to go straight up to some of the best weapons for PvE in the game, like Moonveil or Wing of Astel; these can increase your stat requirements and are somewhat less safe than casting ranged spells, though.

Important Items and Spells

Talismans

Ancestral Spirit’s Horn would be a decent talisman if it was acquirable immediately- by the time you descend into Nokron and fight the boss that gives you this, you’re getting to the point that you just…have enough FP to get from Grace to Grace or defeat bosses.

Blessed Dew Talisman isn’t the most exciting or useful of talismans, basically being the most useful if you are fine with standing still and letting its slow healing fill you back up (usually in concert with Bestial Vitality). However, it’s still better than most talismans in the game.

Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman can offer a massive increase in survivability versus most enemies, and is a strong contender for your talisman slots if you anticipate getting up close and personal with enemies.

Erdtree’s Favor is the weakest version of the ring that has existed in FROM games, and usually will be passed up in favor of better rings at all but the end of your playthrough.

Graven-School Talisman, and its better version Graven-Mass Talisman, are both good choices for sorceries, being direct damage increases. Graven-School Talisman’s boost is not very high at 4%, though, so you may find yourself opting for other talismans instead of it.

Magic Scorpion Charm is good for increasing your sorcery damage, although not a must-have due to its medium boost value and significant survivability penalty.

Marika’s Scarseal/Marika’s Soreseal usually aren’t worth using, as you don’t really benefit from the FTH or ARC boosts (exception possibly in the case of wanting to use Bestial Vitality).

Old Lord’s Talisman can be worthwhile if you don’t mind putting it on before casting buffs (usually before a miniboss or boss fight), and then quickly swapping it off for a more useful talisman. It’s found quite late in the game, unfortunately.

Primal Glintstone Blade sounds good in theory- trading maximum health for a reduction in FP cost of your sorceries- but by the time you can access the talisman, you usually are no longer concerned with running out of FP.

Radagon’s Icon isn’t a great talisman, as the casting speed increase is not that notable for PvE purposes, but it’s a decent talisman to fill your slots with if you have spare slots.

Radagon’s Scarseal/Radagon’s Soreseal has unfortunately mismatched stats for an sorcery-focused character, but can still see use if your chosen melee weapon has high requirements, or if you’re early in progression and do not have better talismans.

Ritual Sword Talisman works well on any caster, as your ability to hit enemies from range easily lends itself well to maintaining the full health damage boost.

Spells

Adula’s Moonblade is a decent spell when you can afford to be in melee range (but don’t want to sit there spamming Carian Slicer). The frostbite debuff it offers is usually more important than its upfront damage, enhancing the damage of your other spells when you back away from the enemy or making Carian Slicer have even higher DPS.

Carian Piercer has great performance versus regular enemies and NPC fights, as you can knock them down repeatedly with the charged spell.

Carian Slicer offers very high damage and essentially the best FP-to-damage ratio you will see in Elden Ring; it can effectively replace most melee weapons in the game and do better than them. Its only downside is the very low poise damage that it offers (and that you don’t necessarily want to get close to enemies in the first place).

Comet has great range and great damage, while still maintaining the mobility of faster sorceries due to its ability to be cast repeatedly while moving.

Comet Azur has a long charge time and renders you immobile while channeling, but offers the highest DPS you can find in Elden Ring, so long as you can hold the beam on your enemy and have the Cerulean Hidden Tear effect active. This can be untenable on bosses without another player or Spirit Ash to draw their attention, so this spell’s uses can be somewhat limited.

Glintstone Pebble is one of the most FP efficient ranged spells. It is superseded by higher damage options like Great Glintstone Shard or Comet/Night Comet, but it maintains workmanlike FP efficiency throughout the areas of Elden Ring.

Loretta’s Greatbow can be useful for some niche cases where you want to hit an enemy extremely far away.

Loretta’s Mastery is usually a slight upgrade to Loretta’s Greatbow, depending on how many projectiles hit the enemy; three projectiles will do about the same damage (for higher FP cost), and four will do more damage.

Meteorite, and its upgrade Meteorite of Astel, can offer great damage if you can get away with channeling them; however, the cases where you can actually do this are rare (without the use of summons or Spirit Ashes), usually mean you can kill the enemy with relative ease regardless, and are generally inferior to Comet Azur being used in the same way.

Night Comet is a somewhat better version of Comet with some caveats; it has lower base damage but can be boosted by Staff of Loss (although this means that you won’t be able to have Sacrificial Axe on your back). Its main strength isn’t its damage, which is mostly similar to Comet until you can acquire two copies of Staff of Loss, but its low visibility which prevents enemies from dodging it like they would with most spells. Use this on agile enemies who would otherwise dodge your other sorceries. It also has a significantly lower INT requirement than Comet. Due to spell slot constraints, you’ll mainly have this attuned rather than Comet.

Rock Sling is a great spell found early in the game, it has great poise damage, an alternative damage type that lets you get around high magic defense, good range, and a delayed cast that most enemies cannot avoid. The best earlygame staff even boosts its type of spell! Its only drawbacks are a somewhat long cast time and average DPS. Unfortunately, its extreme range when locked on has been removed in a patch update.

Shard Spiral, while acquired fairly late into the game, offers incredible damage versus larger targets that it can, well, spiral into for an extended period of time.

Swift Glintstone Shard offers a slightly less FP efficient projectile than Glintstone Pebble, but in return is harder for enemies to dodge and casts faster.

Terra Magica is simply a magic damage buff that you put on the ground. Stand in it before casting Comet Azur or another high damage sorcery, and enjoy your 35% buff.

Other items

Some armor pieces provide damage boosts or stats that can be relevant to sorceries.

Azur’s Glintstone Crown most notably increases the damage of Comet Azur, which can help evaporate bosses even faster.

Queen’s Crescent Crown provides 3 Intelligence when worn, making it a good option for sorcerers.

There are other Glintstone Crowns that provide a variety of buffs and stat boosts, but they have detrimental effects that usually make Queen’s Crescent Crown a better option.

Spell Tools

Meteorite Staff is by far the best staff to use in the early game. You’ll eventually switch from it to Lusat’s Glintstone Staff or Carian Regal Scepter; the exact point at which you switch spell tools depends on how far you’ve upgraded the spell tool and what your INT is, so just upgrade it whenever you can and keep an eye on its sorcery scaling compared to Meteorite Staff’s sorcery scaling. Keep in mind that it takes 50% more FP to cast with Lusat’s, so Carian Regal Scepter and Meteorite Staff would be better at equal or slightly lower sorcery scaling.

The exact staff you take out of Lusat’s and Carian Regal depends on what other aspects of the character you have that engage with FP (keeping Sacrificial Axe out, perhaps?), if you’re just going through areas or fighting bosses, and how easily you can take time to recharge with a flask during harder encounters (i.e. against faster and more aggressive enemies). Lusat’s can also be used at lower INT values compared to Carian Regal Scepter, so it’s a good choice if you want to invest a bit more into other stats like Vigor.

Remember that you can have specific staffs out to passively boost certain kinds of sorceries, like Carian Glintstone Staff for Carian sorceries.

Egor Opleuha
About Egor Opleuha 7137 Articles
Egor Opleuha, also known as Juzzzie, is the Editor-in-Chief of Gameplay Tips. He is a writer with more than 12 years of experience in writing and editing online content. His favorite game was and still is the third part of the legendary Heroes of Might and Magic saga. He prefers to spend all his free time playing retro games and new indie games.

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