An Elden Ring Blood Build is a type of playstyle that focuses on inflicting the ‘Hemorrhage’ status effect on enemies by attacking them as much as possible within a short period of time. This causes the Bleed bar to fill up, which then automatically causes the target to lose a massive percentage of their health. Basically, this is the exact same as the ‘Bleed’ effect in previous FromSoftware games, but the writers have now chosen to give it a more descriptive name.
- Blood Builds are a type of build that primarily focus on inflicting the enemies with the Hemorrhage status effect so that they lose their health to the Bleed mechanics.
- When the Blood Loss bar is filled up through consecutive attacks, enemies lose a huge chunk of their health.
- The best starting classes for the Blood build are the Bandit class as it starts you off with good stats and the Samurai class as it starts you off with the Uchigatana.
- The weapons recommended for the Blood build are Uchigatana, Bloodhound’s Fang, Bloodhound Claws, Ghiza’s Wheel, and Rivers of Blood.
- In order, these weapons can be found at The Deathtouched Catacomb, Limgrave, Liurnia’s Lakeside Crystal Cave, Volcano Manor, and Mountaintops of the Giants.
- The Sacred Seals that make the Blood build shine the most are Erdtree Seal, Dragon Communion Seal, and Godslayer’s Seal.
- The incantations that complement the Blood build the most are Bloodflame Blade, Bloodboon, Bloodflame Talons, and Swarm of Flies.
- The armor sets that are perfectly suited for the Blood build are War Surgeon Set, Crucible Tree Set, and Raging Wolf Set.
- The Talismans that go well with the Blood build are Lord of Blood’s Exultation, Millicent‘s Prosthesis, Godskin Swaddling Cloth, and Erdtree’s Favor.
- The optimal playstyle of the Blood build revolves around rapidly attacking the enemies without giving them the chance to breathe, so that you may quickly build up the Blood Loss bar and inflict the Hemorrhage status effect.
Blood Or Bleed Build
As always, the Starting Class you choose at the beginning of the adventure really does not matter all that much as it only determines your starting gear and stats. Out of the 10 different presets, you can whichever strike your fancy. This is an extremely flexible game, and you can create whatever character you want whenever you want.
But that being said, some classes are better suited to certain builds over others in terms of how quickly they allow you to spec into your chosen build. For example, if you’re going for a Faith weapons playstyle, the Confessor build should be your go-to because it already starts with a Sacred Seal and some Incantations.
Blood or Bleed Build Gear
We will now go over our recommended Weapons, Sacred Seals, Incantations, Armor, and Talismans in more detail below. Everything we mention in the article is based on our personal playthroughs and preferences, so do not take what we list as your only options. You may find a piece of equipment that works really well for your own personal Elden Ring Bleed Build, and you can choose to use that in any way you like. Again, this is an extremely flexible game. Consider reading our Weapons Tier List and learn about the top-tier weapons in the game.
It’s also worth pointing out that although some of the best dexterity weapons inflict Bleed damage, this is not exactly the only stat we will be using for this build. But if that is something you’re interested in, our Elden Ring Dex Build guide can help you out there.
There are some Bleed weapons in the game that also rely on Strength, and some armaments even require completely unexpected stats like Intelligence. Some of the Incantations we’ll describe also require investment in Faith and Arcane to properly use, so it helps to spread your points around a bit. Keep in mind that this is a fairly versatile build, and you don’t have to focus on one stat to be effective.
With that said, let’s properly jump into this article, starting with the weapons.
Blood Build Weapons
Armaments that work for an Elden Ring Blood Build come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.
We have Katanas that are able to deliver quick slashes that build up the Bleed bar quickly, and there are Greatswords builds that hit slow but are able to stack on more bleed per attack. Scythes let players cause bleed from a distance, and Claws help keep the pressure on foes without ever letting them breathe.
But not all of these weapons are great in the heat of combat. Armaments like Whips work great when you’re taking on regular grunts, but it takes an exceptionally skilled player to make them work for boss encounters. Especially when those bosses hit as hard as they do in Elden Ring.
So as our personal recommendations, we suggest that you go with one of the following weapons.
The Uchigatana is such a versatile weapon in this game that it’s more or less guaranteed to squeeze its way into any build guide. It’s extremely easy to acquire during the early hours of the game, and from there on it can be used all the way to the end of the adventure if you keep upgrading it regularly.
It is also one of the earliest Bleed armaments you can find in the game, and its capabilities can be further buffed up by different Incantations. Ashes of War like the Seppuku work perfectly with it, as it allows the weapon to inflict blood loss at an increased rate. It’s really the perfect weapon for an Elden Ring Bleed Build.
And since this is a regular weapon, players can also use the new Ash of War system to give the Uchigatana any affinity they choose, allowing it to scale with whatever stat they want. It really doesn’t matter what you go with, but to get the best results I recommend choosing between either Heavy or Keen Affinities. Both of these allow the weapon to reach A rank scaling in Strength and Dexterity respectively at +23.
The Bloodhound’s Fang is a curved greatsword that can also be found during the first couple of hours with the game, in the region of Limgrave. It requires 18 Strength and 17 Dexterity to wield properly, but the dominant stat is still Dex. At the +7 upgrade level, the Dexterity scaling reaches B rank, but it never exceeds C rank for Strength.
It also possesses the Bleed Buildup ability, which is the whole reason it is present on this list. In fact, the Bloodhound’s Fang is one of the few greatswords in the game that actually has this passive trait, which is otherwise found on lighter armaments like Scythes, Katanas, and Daggers. And although it cannot be infused with Ashes of War, its unique ‘Bloodhound’s Finesse’ skill is an incredibly useful ability that allows players to dance around their enemies while still causing Blood Loss.
This armament is also one of the special weapons in the game that can be buffed with magic and greases. So if you use Blood Grease or the Bloodflame Blade on it, you can enhance the rate at which it inflicts Blood Loss.
If you enjoy close-quarters combat, and I mean really close combat, then the Bloodhound Claws were custom made for you. These are fist weapons that can be used to get up close to your foes, and rapidly rend them with fast slashes.
This weapon requires 10 Strength and 15 Dexterity to wield, and it scales really well with both Dexterity and Arcane at a maximum of B rank. You can also choose to focus purely on the Blood Loss aspect of the armament, and change its affinity to ‘Blood.’ This has pretty poor scaling with Strength, Dexterity, and Arcane, but in return the amount of bleed it inflicts changes from the base 60 to 82 points.
And once again, this is another entry on our Elden Ring Blood Build that can be buffed with consumables and Incantations. The Bloodflame blade is again the go-to if you intend to enhance the amount of bleed you inflict, but it’s also not limited to that either.
As a Colossal weapon, the Ghiza’s Wheel is not the easiest to wield and its attack animations are noticeably slower than any other armament on this list. It also requires you to have 28 Strength and 18 Dexterity to wield, and at no point does the scaling with either of those stats ever exceed C rank.
But in return, this Strength weapon has the single highest rate of Blood loss Buildup in the entire game. Its pure brute strength is enough to take out most regular enemies with a few well-timed attacks. And when dealing with tougher foes with larger health bars, the Hemorrhage effect also builds up at the same time, allowing players to deal tremendous damage to bosses and the like.
And it’s good that the Ghiza’s Wheel has this high rate of Blood loss Buildup because otherwise it cannot be buffed with spells or items. It also cannot be supplemented by Ashes of War, but its own unique ‘Spinning Wheel’ is plenty powerful by itself. It allows the player to hold the weapon aloft and spin its wheel rapidly, letting you shred foes and build Blood loss rapidly. On the subject of items, why not read our Elden Ring Items Tier List.
Rivers of Blood
You cannot make an Elden Ring Bleed Build and not have it involve the fantastic Rivers of Blood katana. Not only is this one of the best weapons in the entire game, but it is also a Hemorrhage machine that can shave chunks off of a boss’s health bar in seconds. The only problem is that you cannot acquire it until you reach the Mountaintops of the Giants, which is a region you gain access to dozens of hours into the game.
At first glance, the Rivers of Blood seems like basic katana with a simple moveset. Its regular attack animations are not anything special, and its Blood Loss buildup is not particularly high either when compared to other Katanas like the Moonveil. Its unique Corpse Piler skill however is something else entirely.
By pressing the special attack button once, players are able to fire off a series of quick slashes that are infused with blood and have improved range. By pressing the button twice more in sequence, more slashes are incorporated into the attack to create a devastating combo that can cause the Hemorrhage effect in the blink of an eye. In fact, this combo might actually be the quickest way to inflict this status effect in the game.
Sacred Seals in Elden Ring are the primary catalysts through which you cast all of the Incantations in the game. Most are capable of casting every Faith-based spell, but different Seals boost different types of Incantations.
There are also only a handful of them in the entire game, and not all of them are made equal. Some require more work than others to obtain, and then there’s also the matter of how they scale with Faith or Arcane.
Unfortunately, there is no Seal in the game that boosts Blood Incantations specifically, or at least one has not been found as of yet. And in the absence of one, we will now go over the best Sacred Seals for an Elden Ring Blood Build:
- Erdtree Seal: The Erdtree Seal does not boost any particular type of Incantation, but it’s simply a really solid seal overall. It reaches S rank with Faith scaling at the +5 upgrade level.
- Dragon Communion Seal: This boosts Dragon Communion type Incantations and reaches S rank with Arcane scaling at +7. Arcane is the stat most commonly used for Blood Incantations.
- Godslayer’s Seal: A really solid Seal that enhances godslayer type Incantations and also reaches S rank Faith scaling at +14.
Each of these should easily work for the type of character we’re going for in this guide.
Blood Build Incantations
There are a few different spells in the game that can help you cause Hemorrhage on your enemies. One of these massively buffs your weapons and improves the rate at which the Blood Loss meter fills up, while the others are damage dealing Incantations that cause Blood Loss by themselves.
To be able to use these, players will have to invest some of their points into stats like Faith and Arcane. And while this might not seem all that appealing for a melee build, you’ll be glad to know that neither of the required values ever exceed 17 points.
It’s also worth mentioning that none of these Incantations are meant to be used solely by themselves, as this is not a magic build. They should always be equipped alongside a proper melee weapon.
I’ve mentioned this Incantation before in the article, and that’s because no Elden Ring Bleed Build can ever be complete without the Bloodflame Blade. This is basically a buff that enchants the weapon in your right hand with Bloodflame. It’s a glowing red effect that enhances the Bleed capabilities of the armament, allowing to cause the Blood Loss meter to fill up quickly.
This can be used with all regular weapons in the game, as well as some select special weapons like the Bloodhound’s Fang. But as far as truly unique armaments like the Sword of Night and Flame are concerned, this will not affect them. They have their own unique skill, and the game does not let you overwrite them. Read our Sword of Night and Flame build guide if you want to have magic and pyromancy flow from the same weapon.
The Bloodboon Incantation is a spell that involves creating Bloodflame in the caster’s hand and then scattering it in an arc in front of them. Not only do enemies hit by the flame take damage, but the area where it lands keeps burning for a short while afterward.
So as foes walk into the area of effect, they keep on taking regular damage as well as Bleed damage. If you keep stacking the Incantation one after the other, you can basically create a minefield where simply walking is enough to cause a Hemorrhage. The spell also has great range, so players never even have to get close to their targets.
This entry on our Blood Build is a bit tricky to use, due to the fact that it requires players to really get up close to their targets for it to properly work. But in return, they’re able to deal tremendous damage and bleed as the payoff for this risk.
When casting this, the character basically creates a red claw mark in the air in front of them. This itself doesn’t actually deal any damage, but less than a second later the claw mark explodes in a burst of red flame. Again, it’s a pretty tricky Incantation to use, but players willing to take the risk are rewarded handsomely.
Swarm of Flies
If you’re not afraid of completely breaking your game, then the Swarm of Flies Incantation is right for you. As the name implies, it allows players to summon forth a literal swarm of blood-red flies that slowly make their way forward, damaging anything in their path.
What’s great about this spell is that not only do these flies damage your enemies, they actually stagger them and stop them from taking any sort of action. So if you cast it at an enemy, you incapacitate them, deal physical damage and also build up the Blood Loss bar the longer they are in contact with the spell. And best of all, you can easily cast this multiple times in quick succession.
Blood Build Armor
There are no particular armor sets that are perfectly suited for an Blood Build, because the weapons you use range all the way from light claws to colossal wheels. You can pick and choose whatever works for you, and you can always invest in the Endurance stat to increase your maximum Equip Load if you want to use gear that is particularly heavy.
But one common thread you’ll have noticed is that all the armaments a player will use for this build are melee weapons. So you’ll have to move in closer to your foes to actually use them, leaving you open to close-range attacks that can kill you in a few hits. So maybe go for medium to heavy armor sets that have good Physical damage negation. But again, this is only a recommendation.
And on that topic, we have our own recommendations that worked extremely well for us.
War Surgeon Set
The War Surgeon Set is not a particularly good-looking set, and it doesn’t offer any type of damage reduction that we might consider particularly beneficial. What it does have, however, is a unique ability that is meant for those players who really want to get the most out of their Elden Ring Bleed Build.
The helmet of the set, the White Mask, has a unique property where your attack power is boosted by 10% any time you successfully inflict Blood Loss on any enemy. This buff lasts for a total of 20 seconds, and it cannot stack over itself. But if you’re able to constantly cause Hemorrhage, you can expect to constantly have the boost active.
Crucible Tree Set
If you’re not confident in your ability to be able to dodge effectively, you might want to consider picking up an armor set that can take a lot of damage. The Crucible Tree Set is only one such set, but it’s also good enough to easily carry you through to the end-game.
As far as heavy armor sets go, it’s also pretty reasonable in terms of weight. With only a handful of points in Endurance, you can easily keep yourself at Medium Load and not lose your ability to dodge roll. It won’t be as fast as the rolling animation of a Light Load, but you’ll be glad to have access to it anyway.
Raging Wolf Set
My personal favorite set in the entire game is the Raging Wolf Set, and it’s absolutely perfect for any player who feels confident in their ability to dodge roll and evade attacks. Its weight is low enough that you can combine it with lighter weapons like Katanas and still manage to stay at a Light Load, and even maintain a maximum of a Medium Load with heavier weapons like Greatswords.
The armor’s Lightning defense isn’t particularly great, but otherwise, it has decent stats across the board. And the cherry on top of the cake is that it also happens to be one of the coolest-looking armor sets in the entire game, which never hurts when picking your gear.
Blood Build Talismans
There are a lot of great Talismans in Elden Ring, and they each serve a specific role in creating some of the best Builds in the game. And choosing from the list available can be a bit daunting, but hopefully, our Best Elden Ring Talismans guide can help in that regard.
We are now going to list some of the best Talismans in Elden Ring that we think work tremendously well with an Elden Ring Blood Build. And we’re going to justify our choices below.
Lord of Blood’s Exultation
With a name like the Lord of Blood’s Exultation, you simply know that there’s something about it that works well with a Bleed Build. And that something happens to be a 20% increase to your attack power anytime there is Blood loss in your character’s vicinity. It also doesn’t have to be caused by you, a fellow player can also do this for you to get the buff.
This is a massive increase to your power as a player whose main source of damage is the Hemorrhage effect, and you’re going to want to equip weapons that inflict bleeding rapidly to get the most out of it. Best of all, this buff stacks with the damage increase provided by the White Mask of the War Surgeon Set, bringing the total up to 30%.
If you’re going for an Elden Ring Bleed Build that utilizes fast strikes with weapons like Katanas or Claws, then Millicent‘s Prosthesis is perfect for you. Not only does it give you a +5 to your Dexterity stat, but it also increases your attack power with successive attacks.
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And successive attacks are kind of the key to this whole Hemorrhage mechanic. The goal is to build up the Blood Loss meter as quickly as humanly possible, and if you get a boost to your physical damage as part of that, then you can kill your enemies much faster. Acquiring this does require you to complete Millicent’s entire questline, which should take you around 40 hours with the game.
Godskin Swaddling Cloth
The Godskin Swaddling Cloth is an item meant for players who know how to keep attacking their enemies without letting them breathe.
This Talisman functions a lot like Millicent’s Prosthesis, but instead of raising your attack power, successive attacks restore your health. And since you’re going to be doing a lot of rapid attacks to build up the Blood Loss meter, this works out perfectly. Read our Godskin Duo Cheese guide if the duo bosses are too much for you.
The Erdtree’s Favor talisman increases your Health, Stamina, and Equip Load, which are three things that any player can use. In fact, Stamina in particular is extremely useful for a build that focuses on rapidly striking your foes in a short period of time.
And the extra Health and Equip Load never hurts either, as they basically allow you to take more punishment and still keep standing. For a build that is mostly centered on melee, that is extremely useful. Basically, this Talisman is not only useful for an Elden Ring Blood Build, but for any playstyle in the game. Because what it grants you is fairly straightforward and useful.
Blood Build Playstyle
As I’ve mentioned multiple times before in this article, the goal of a Blood Build is to attack your enemies rapidly in order to fill up the Blood Loss bar and inflict Hemmorage. The faster you attack, the faster it fills up. Gaps in between your blows run the risk of letting this meter fall, so it’s crucial to keep the pressure on as much as possible.
So to be really effective, pick a weapon from this guide and learn how to use it. Memorize its moveset, and understand how long it takes to fill up the Blood Loss bar with it. Keep in mind that not all Bleed weapons work in the same way, and find the one particular Katana, Scythe, or Greatsword that feels natural to you.
And once you’ve gotten the hang of your chosen armament, figure out if it’s compatible with Bloodflame Blade. As your primary Bleed incantation, you should aim to have this active whenever you jump into combat. If an armament cannot make use of it, then it will usually have an alternative skill that is equally effective at inducing Blood Loss.
Whatever you choose to go with, remember that your primary objective is to cause bleeding. Forget heavy attacks and forget critical hits, you’re only going for as many attacks per second as possible.
Move-in, get a few strikes in and move away. Do not get greedy and get knocked down or staggered yourself, because that will cause you to lose time. And during this downtime, the Blood Loss meter will go down. You do not want this to happen.
And that’s all there is to our Blood Build. While you’re here, why not also check our Elden Ring Dragonlord Placidusax Location guide.
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