Elden Ring: BEST Scythe Builds [200+ Hours Experience]

In this guide, we'll cover the best possible scythe builds you can make in Elden Ring, discussing each build's pros, cons, and specific uses.

Scythes have always been a niche weapon type, so you won’t see them in too many builds. Maybe it’s because the game doesn’t have any particular scythes that stand out and thus often become overshadowed by Katanas and other popular melee weapons. However, with a proper build, the sheer versatility a single Scythe brings to the table will likely surprise you in Elden Ring.

Key Takeaways
  • Most Scythes in Elden Ring are focused on Strength, Dexterity, and Faith, which is why the ideal reaper builds should be centered around those specific stats.
  • There are 4 Scythes in the gameWinged Scythe, Halo Scythe, Grave Scythe, and the regular Scythe.
  • These scythes are unlocked fairly early in the game and are usually found in Limgrave, Liurnia, and Caelid.
  • They also come with a pre-applied Ash of War attack that you can change by visiting any Site of Grace.

My Best Builds For Each Scythe

Let’s have a quick look at all of my Scythe Builds, which you can use in Elden Ring:

BuildStat RequirementsPrimary WeaponSecondary WeaponAshes of WarTalismansArmor
Dual Strength Scythes- Endurance: 43
- Strength: 17
- Dexterity: 14
Grave ScytheScythe- Sword Dance (Grave Scythe)
- Bloodhound Step (Scythe)
- Erdtree’s Favor
- Great-Jar's Arsenal
- Millicent’s Prosthesis
- Bull-Goat's Talisman
- Omensmirk Mask
- Veteran's Set
Halo Scythe’s Faith & Dexterity- Endurance: 30
- Dexterity: 16
- Faith: 15
- Strength: 13
Halo ScytheNone- Miquella’s Ring of Light- Erdtree's Favor
- Radagon’s Soreseal
- Two Fingers Heirloom
- Shard of Alexander
- Okina Mask
- Beast Champion Set
Winged Scythe & Incantations- Mind: 30
- Intelligence: 17
- Dexterity: 16
- Strength: 16
Winged ScytheGolden Order Seal- Angel’s Wing- Erdtree’s Favor
- Two Fingers Heirloom
- Marika's Soreseal
- Carian Filgreed Crest
- Haligree Helm
- Scaled Set
Grave Scythe’s Immoveable Set- Endurance: 53
- Strength: 48
- Vigor: 45
Grave ScytheFingerprint Stone Shield- Phantom Slash (Grave Scythe)
- Shield Bash (Fingerprint Stone Shield)
- Erdtree’s Favor
- Radagon’s Soreseal
- Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman
- Great-Jar’s Arsenal
- Crimson Hood
- General Radahn Set

1. Dual Strength Scythes

The best offense-based Scythe build with Power Stancing.

Minimum Stat Requirements: Strength: 17 | Dexterity: 14 | Endurance: 43

Equip Load: 60.8

Item

Preferred

Alternative

Primary Weapon Grave Scythe None
Secondary Weapon Scythe None
Ashes of War Sword Dance (Grave Scythe), Bloodhound Step (Scythe) Phantom Slash (Grave Scythe), Royal Knight’s Resolve (Scythe)
Talismans Erdtree’s Favor, Great-Jar’s Arsenal, Millicent’s Prosthesis, Bull-Goat’s Talisman Viridian Amber Medallion, Starscourge Heirloom, Dagger Talisman, Assassin’s Crimson Dagger, Green Turtle Talisman, Radagon’s Soreseal
Head Omensmirk Mask Okina Mask
Chest Veteran’s Armor Blaidd’s Armor
Arms Veteran’s Gauntlets Blaidd’s Gauntlets
Legs Veteran’s Greaves Blaidd’s Greaves

For my first build, I’ll be focusing on making a purely Strength and Dexterity-focused build by Power Stancing with the 2 Strength weapons, the regular Scythe and the Grave Scythe. I’ve preferably kept the Grave Scythe in my main hand since it does significantly more damage than the regular one.

Build 1 Equipment list
Scythe Build 1 Overview (Screenshot taken by eXputer)

For the armor set, the only necessary item here is the Headwear, the Omensmirk Mask, which raises Strength. This is not only a lightweight mask but is also the only mask that enhances one of your key stats. The rest of the armor set can be anything you like as long as it’s equal to or lighter than Medium Load.

Scythe Build 1 armor set Elden Ring
Omensmirk Mask + Veteran Armor Set (Image Captured by eXputer)

The Talismans here are particularly suited to Strength and Dex builds.

  • Great-Jar Arsenal: Raises your maximum equipment load, which is crucial since your dual scythes won’t give much room to wear any heavy armor otherwise.
  • Bull-Goat Talisman: Makes your defense stronger since it adds Poise to the build.
  • Millicent’s Prosthesis: An offense-based Talisman that increases Dexterity and Attack Power by encouraging an aggressive playstyle.
  • Erdtree’s Favor: An extremely powerful talisman that raises your maximum HP, stamina, and equipment load, which makes this build reliable in most situations.
Scythe Build 1 Talismans Elden Ring
Talismans: Erdtree’s Favor, Great-Jar Arsenal, Millicent’s Prosthesis, Bull-Goat Talisman (Image by eXputer)
  • Strong offensive potential.
  • Reliable and Versatile.
  • Great range and damage output.
  • Items are tough to get.

2. Halo Scythe’s Faith And Dexterity

The best synergized Scythe build.

Minimum Stat Requirements: Strength: 13 | Dexterity: 16 | Faith: 15 | Endurance: 30

Equip Load: 47.5

Item Preferred

Alternative

Primary Weapon Halo Scythe None
Secondary Weapon None Any Shield
Ashes of War Miquella’s Ring of Light (Default) None
Talismans Erdtree’s Favor, Radagon’s Soreseal, Two Fingers Heirloom, Shard of Alexander Ancestral Spirit’s Horn, Cerulean Amber Medallion, Warrior Jar Shard, Sacred Scorpion Charm, Radagon’s Scarseal
Head Okina Mask Omensmirk Mask
Chest Beast Champion Armor (Altered) Royal Remains Armor
Arms Beast Champion Gauntlets Royal Remains Gauntlets
Legs Beast Champion Greaves Royal Remains Greaves
  • Why I Chose This: In my opinion, no other Scythe build excels in having a blend between close-range and long-range effective build as this.

The Halo Scythe is a Dexterity weapon that also scales heavily with Strength and Faith. Its Physical damage output is nearly twice its Holy damage, which is why it’s most suitable for Strength or Dexterity players looking to use Faith as a backup stat.

Scythe Build 2 equipment list
Scythe Build 2 Overview (Screenshot Grab: eXputer)
  • The Scythe default Ash of War, Miquella’s Ring of Light, is kept intact in this build because it’s unique, has great range, and, with practice, becomes incredibly powerful via its Attack Power.
  • It will take you some time to master it, but the payoff is definitely worth the wait.
  • I’ve chosen some of the best and most commonly used Talismans to go with this build.
  • This includes Erdtree’s Favor and Radagon’s Soreseal, which enhance multiple attributes simultaneously, making the player much more versatile and well-rounded overall.
Scythe Build 2 Talismans Elden Ring
Talismans: Erdtree’s Favor, Radagon’s Soreseal, Two Fingers Heirloom, Shard of Alexander (Screenshot by eXputer)

For the more specific talismans, I’ve equipped the Two Fingers Heirloom, which raises your Faith by five levels, along with the Shard of Alexander, which boosts the Attack Power of your skills.

  • These Talismans work well with each other since the Two Fingers Heirloom, along with the Shard of Alexander, significantly increases the damage of your Ash of War attack.
  • Unlike the last build that required more Strength than Dexterity, this one needs much more Dexterity to amplify the Halo Scythe’s scaling.
  • As such, we’re using the Okina Mask, which raises your Dexterity in exchange for Focus.
  • This lightweight headgear can be coupled with the Beast Champion or any heavy armor set in the Elden Ring.
Scythe Build 2 Armor Set Elden Ring
Okina Mask + Beast Champion Armor Set (Screenshot Grab: eXputer)
Important: It’s better to go with the Altered version of the Beast Champion Armor since it’s much lighter and adds more poise compared to the standard version. 
  • Extremely tough to counter in PvP.
  • Potent Dexterity Scaling.
  • Only works with Dex builds.
  • Needs time to master.

3. Winged Scythe And Incantations

The best FP-based Scythe build.

Minimum Stat Requirements: Strength: 16 | Dexterity: 16 | Intelligence: 17 | Faith: 24 | Mind: 30

Equip Load: 45.4

Item

Preferred

Alternative

Primary Weapon Winged Scythe None
Secondary Weapon Golden Order Seal Erdtree Seal
Ashes of War Angel’s Wing (Default) None
Talismans Erdtree’s Favor, Two Fingers Heirloom, Marika’s Soreseal, Carian Filgreed Crest Marika’s Scarseal, Cerulean Amber Medallion, Cerulean Seed Talisman, Faithful’s Canvas Talisman, Sacred Scorpion Charm, Ancestral Spirit’s Horn
Head Haligree Helm Sacred Crown Helm
Chest Scaled Armor (Altered) Blaidd’s Armor
Arms Scaled Gauntlets Royal Remains Gauntlets
Legs Scaled Greaves Royal Remains Greaves
  • Why I Chose This: If you’re looking for a Scythe build in Elden Ring that’s focused on Incantations and FP, then look no further.

The Winged Scythe is a Faith-based weapon that also dishes out decent Physical damage as well, giving way to making a powerful Faith build in Elden Ring. Combining it with the Golden Order Seal, you can make the build more versatile by giving you several offensive and defensive options during combat.

Scythe Build 3 equipment list
Scythe Build 3 Overview (Image Captured by us)
  • Like all reapers in Elden Ring, the Winged Scythe causes Bleed buildup, which is why you should pair this build with Bleed-focused Incantations like Swarm of Flies and Bloodflame Talons.
  • Apart from that, you can also stay on the defensive or passive side of things by equipping the Golden Vow, which raises attack and defense, and the Order’s Blade, which enhances the Holy Damage of your right-hand weapon.

The Talismans here are mainly focused on increasing your Faith potential.

  • Marika’s Soreseal, Erdtree’s Favor, and the Two Fingers Heirloom: Significantly increase your Faith along
  • Carian Filigreed Crest: Lowers FP consumption, letting you perform a lot more spells and Ash of War attacks.
Scythe Build 3 Talismans Elden Ring
Talismans: Erdtree’s Favor, Marika’s Soreseal, Two Fingers Heirloom, Carian Filigreed Crest (Image taken by eXputer)

The Winged Scythe is already considered a nimble weapon in Elden Ring, so you can include a heavy armor set in your build without any difficulty. Alternatively, I’d suggest going with a Faith-based helm to give you more potent with that stat.

Scythe Build 3 armor set Elden Ring
Haligree Helm + Scaled Armor Set (Image Credits: eXputer)
  • Ideal for Faith players.
  • Inflicts Bleed.
  • Versatile for close-range and long-range combat.
  • Requires a lot of FP.

4. Grave Scythe’s Immoveable Set

The Scythe Build with the toughest defense.

Minimum Stat Requirements: Vigor: 45 | Strength: 48 | Endurance: 53

Equip Load: 78.9

Item Preferred

Alternative

Primary Weapon Grave Scythe None
Secondary Weapon Fingerprint Stone Shield Crossed-Tree Towershield
Ashes of War Phantom Slash (Grave Scythe), Shield Bash (Fingerprint Stone Shield) Braggart’s Roar (Grave Scythe), Shield Crash (Fingerprint Stone Shield)
Talismans Erdtree’s Favor, Radagon’s Soreseal, Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman, Great-Jar’s Arsenal Arsenal Charm, Radagon’s Scarseal, Starscourge Heirloom, Dragoncrest Shield Talisman, Curved Sword Talisman, Warrior Jar Shard
Head Crimson Hood Omenshirk Mask
Chest Radahn’s Lion Armor (Altered) Beast Champion Armor (Altered)
Arms Radahn’s Gauntlets  Beast Champion Gauntlets
Legs Radahn’s Greaves  Beast Champion Greaves
  • Why I Chose This: Most players like to have high poise and Physical Damage Negation to tank attacks and stay aggressive, which is why this build is a perfect choice for that playstyle.

For my final build, I’ll be making something overpowered for Endurance-focused players. The Grave Scythe is arguably the best Strength reaper in the game, which is why it’s my recommendation for this build.

Scythe Build 4 Equipment list
Scythe Build 4 Overview (Image Source: eXputer)

The Ashes of War, for both the primary and secondary weapon, are offensive and put decent pressure on the opponent. The Phantom Slash is extremely damage-centric and difficult to dodge, especially in multiplayer. On the other hand, the Shield Bash on the Stone Shield makes most enemy counterattacks punishable.

  • Similar to most endurance builds, we’ll be choosing one of the heaviest armor sets in the game.
  • This includes the Crimson Hood that increases your vigor, with the General Radahn armor set that adds a ton of poise and physical damage negation to the build.
Scythe Build 4 Armor Set
Crimson Hood + Radahn Armor Set (Screenshot by eXputer)

This is further complimented by the talismans I’ve chosen:

  • Great-Jar Arsenal: Increases your maximum equipment load
  • Dragoncrest Greatshield: Heavily boosts your already vigorous damage negation.
  • Erdtree’s Favor and Radagon’s Soreseal: Heavily impact your physical offensive and defensive capabilities.
Scythe Build 4 Talismans Elden Ring
Talismans: Erdtree’s Favor, Radagon’s Soreseal, Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman, Great-Jar Arsenal (Image taken by eXputer)
  • Strong guarding ability.
  • Ideal for Strength and Endurance-focused players.
  • Potent defense and Physical Damage Negation.
  • High poise.
  • Lack of versatility.
  • Scythe’s Ash of War is basic.
  • Slow.

My Experience With Scythes And My Personal Favorite

Out of the four scythes, my personal favorite is the Winged Scythe in Elden Ring. But that doesn’t mean that the other scythes were bad by any means. The Winged Scythe is just too overpowered, as it offers substantial damage.

hammad ijaz elden ring save slot
My Elden Ring playtime on Steam (Steam ID: Future_Bird)

When I started dual-wielding the Winged Scythe in the New Game+, it allowed me to drain through the health of bosses with ease, with the correct build, obviously. The only downside I can think of for this scythe is the holy damage, which is not a problem in most of the game but is quite troublesome when you are fighting “God” bosses, especially the Elden Beast. 

In that case, I always kept the Grave Scythe as a backup weapon in case I was ever against an enemy resistant or immune to Holy Damage.

That wraps up my guide on the best scythe builds you can create in the game. As mentioned, these builds, although belonging to the weapon type, are vastly different and offer a completely unique set of versatility, uses, and advantages. So try to use each scythe and its build to see which one suits you the most. You can also check this Reddit thread to see what the Elden Ring community is pairing up with their reapers!

For more unique builds and weapons, check out eXputer’s guide on making a Mage Build in Elden Ring. If you prefer ranged weapons instead, consider reading up on the Best Bows you can find and equip in the game. Apart from that, you can make your custom build even more diverse and powerful by learning how to summon spirits in-game.

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Hammad Ijaz is a Guides Writer on eXputer who is into various gaming genres. He has this pure passion for enjoying games and then reflecting that passion back into his writing. Along with a gaming experience of 10+ years, he also has many years of writing experience. Hammad further solidifies his status as a true gamer by showcasing hundreds of hours of game time on Warframe, Witcher 3, and Elden Ring. Feel free to explore his extensive gaming library on Steam.

Experience: 3+ Years || Education: Bachelors in Computer Sciences.

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