If you want to make a versatile, reliable character that simultaneously excels in several archetypes, then Elden Ring’s Prisoner build is undoubtedly the one for you. Unlike most starting classes that only focus on one attribute alone, this build starts with some of the best Dexterity and Intelligence stats in the entire game. As such, you’re already open to a lot more variety in your build than most others, and with the right items, you can complement it to become one of the best.
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|– Moonveil Katana|
– Azur's Glintsone Staff
– Death Ritual Spear
– Lusat's Glintstone Staff
– Hoslow's Petal Whip
|– Navy Hood|
– Cerulean Tear Scarab
– Royal Remains Helm
– Imp Head (Wolf)
|– Cerulean Amber Medallion +2|
– Rotten Winged Sword Insignia
– Erdtree's Favor +2
– Marika's Soreseal
|– Glintstone Pebble|
– Adula's Moonblade
– Carian Phalanx
– Terra Magica
– Comet Azur
Key Attributes For Elden Ring’s Prisoner Build
As mentioned, a Prisoner build is a blend between Dexterity and Intelligence, offering players the choice to go for either a melee build, a long-ranged build, or even a mix of the 2 stats in Elden Ring. Therefore, when looking to level up your attributes at a Site of Grace, you should prioritize the following:
|Vigor||Increases Maximum HP, Fire Resistance, and Immunity||Level 61|
|Mind||Increases Maximum FP and Focus||Level 57|
|Endurance||Increases Stamina, Equipment Load, and Robustness||Level 50|
|Dexterity||Allows wielding and enhancement of Dexterity-scaling weapons||Level 55|
|Intelligence||Allows casting of glintstone spells and enhancement of Intelligence-scaling weapons and sorceries||Level 80|
Best Weapons For Prisoner Build
Depending on which attribute you want to level up in your playthrough consistently, you’ll focus on obtaining either Dex and Int-based melee weapons or simply Intelligence weapons such as staffs for this build. The easiest way to find a weapon of either stat is by checking their Dex and Int scaling grade in the Equipment Menu. The greater the scaling level, the stronger its dependence on the associated attribute.
With that said, here’s a list of some of the best weapons for your build, showcasing their stats and abilities:
|WEAPON NAME||MAIN ATTRIBUTE||STAT REQUIREMENTS||ATTRIBUTE SCALING||ASH OF WAR|
|Moonveil Katana||Dexterity||Str: 12 | Dex: 18 | Int: 23||Str: E | Dex: B | Int: B||Transient Moonlight|
|Azur's Glintstone Staff||Intelligence||Str: 10 | Int: 52||Str: C | Int: S||None|
|Death Ritual Spear||Dexterity||Str: 14 | Dex: 20 | Int: 18||Str: D | Dex: B | Int: D||Spearcell Ritual|
|Lusat's Glintstone Staff||Intelligence||Str: 10 | Int: 52||Str: C | Int: S||None|
|Hoslow's Petal Whip||Dexterity||Str: 10 | Dex: 20||Str: D | Dex: C||None (Can be applied)|
The Moonveil Katana is regarded as one of the best katanas, largely thanks to its respectable range, speed, and damage. Besides the regular attacks, however, the most powerful feature of the Moonveil is its Ash of War, Transient Moonlight, which launches a magical wave attack forward after the swing.
- Ash of War: Quick startup, wide range, easily stun-locks on a direct hit.
- Two variations: vertical and horizontal, adaptable to different situations.
- Hold and delay feature for surprising online PvP attacks.
- Despite nerfs, the katana excels for Intelligence and Dexterity users.
- Obtain after defeating Magma Wyrm in eastern Caelid’s Gael Tunnel.
Azur’s Glintstone Staff
As a weapon with one of the highest Intelligence stat requirements in Elden Ring, the Azur’s Glintstone Staff is undoubtedly one of the best spellcasting weapons if you want to perform sorceries with your Prisoner build.
- S-rank Intelligence boosts damage significantly and cuts casting time by 10% for quicker sorcery attacks.
- However, speed increase comes with a trade-off: 25% more FP consumption, risking frequent depletion.
- Mitigate drawbacks with talismans and Mind upgrades to create a swift and potent Prisoner build.
Death Ritual Spear
While severely underrated, the Death Ritual Spear is another potent late-game Dex weapon with decent damage output, range, and one of the best mid to long-range Ashes of War. As a spear, you’ll mostly use this weapon’s regular attacks for mid-range pokes and attack at a safe distance.
- Spearcell Ritual Ash of War: Unleashes a powerful area-of-effect attack by raining spears, inflicting Magic Damage, and triggering Deathblight.
- Comparison to Moonveil Katana: Slower startup but boasts superior range and longer effect duration, hitting multiple enemies at once.
- Deathblight Buildup: Particularly effective against high-HP foes, speeding up their demise as the Deathblight meter fills.
- Obtaining Ritual Spear: Acquire it by defeating the Death Rite Bird near the Snow Valley Ruins Overlook Site of Grace on the Mountaintops of the Giants.
Lusat’s Glintstone Staff
With similar stat requirements and scaling as the Azur’s Glintstone Staff, this weapon is a solid alternative for players prioritizing damage over speed. This is because Lusat’s Glintstone Staff adds +12% damage to sorceries instead, which would help increase the potency of the more compact spells like the Glintstone Pebble and the Carian Phalanx.
- Unfortunately, this results in a massive 50% extra FP cost for sorceries, roughly double that of the Azur counterpart.
- So if you’re looking for that slight edge to 1-shot enemies or want your Prisoner to rely on DPS, Lusat’s staff can certainly do that for you, given you have enough resources and stats to maintain a steady FP meter and a consistent build.
Hoslow’s Petal Whip
Despite the modest stat requirements, Hoslow’s Petal Whip is not only one of the best whips in Elden Ring but also one of the best Dex weapons overall.
- Whip’s attacks: Wide range, high speed, significant damage, and staggers enemies.
- Key feature: Inflicts potent Bleed effect, causing substantial HP loss and stagger upon Blood Loss meter fill-up.
- Versatility: Can apply any Ash of War, enhancing adaptability to various playstyles and builds.
- Strategy: Fast Ash of War combined with quick regular attacks efficiently builds up the opponent’s Blood Loss meter.
- How to get it: Obtain Hoslow’s Petal Whip for your Elden Ring’s Prisoner build near Shack of the Lofty in Mountaintops of the Giants after defeating Juno Hoslow.
Best Armor Sets For Prisoner Build
Apart from the headpieces, most of the Elden Ring armor sets have no unique properties besides their design and weight. So for the gauntlets, leggings, and chest armor, you can choose any type you want as long as you stay under Heavy Load and don’t fat roll.
|Head Armor||Passive Effect||Weight|
|Navy Hood||Increases Mind||1.7|
|Royal Remains Helm||Slowly replenishes HP when HP is reduced||4.6|
|Cerulean Tear Scarab||Slightly increases recovery effect of Flask of Cerulean Tears||5.1|
|Imp Head (Wolf)||Slightly raises Endurance||8.1|
The Navy Hood is a lightweight head armor that adds +1 to your Mind attribute, resulting in a slight bump to your maximum FP. While this effect may seem minuscule, it’s still another way to raise your FP while letting you spend your runes on raising another attribute.
- With just 1.7 Weight, this is an ideal armor piece if you don’t have enough Endurance or want to stack your Equipment Load with multiple other weapons and items.
- You’ll find the Navy Hood alongside the Noble armor set and the Twinned Knight Swords atop a pile of burning corpses at the East Windmill Pasture, located at the northern edge of the Altus Plateau.
Cerulean Tear Scarab
As you might’ve guessed from the name, this weirdly shaped head gear focuses on improving the amount of FP you recover from each Flask of Cerulean Tears.
- Scarab helms vary in FP reduction methods, but they are often situational and limited to specific attacks.
- This helm stands out for those with diverse play styles reliant on FP.
- Easily obtainable in Sellia after navigating a few rooftops.
Royal Remains Helm
When it comes to helms specializing in maintaining a consistent HP bar, none are as impactful as this one, as it continuously recharges 2 HP per second once you go under 18% total HP. The Royal Remains Helm is particularly helpful against powerful foes that can kill you in one or two hits, as the slight HP recovery from a critical state could mean life or death.
- Apart from that, the Royal Remains armor set is the only kit whose chest armor, gauntlets, and leggings possess the same passive ability, so you can wear the entire set to make the recovery process much faster.
- You can get this helm along with its armor set early on once you get to the Village of the Albinaurics found in the southwestern region of Liurnia.
- Once you take the Village of the Albinaurics Site of Grace, head up the hill, and find a large pot that you’ll need to hit once to reveal Old Albus, the Albinauric NPC hiding inside.
- After talking to Albus, he’ll give you the right half of the Haligtree Secret Medallion, after which you need to teleport back to the Roundtable Hold.
- Upon reaching the Hold, you’ll notice the area has become much darker than usual, and after a few seconds, you’ll be invaded by Ensha of the Royal Remains.
- Kill Ensha to return to the original Roundtable Hold and head to where he usually rests outside Gideon’s office to pick up the Royal Remains armor set.
Imp Head (Wolf)
While most Imp Heads have a passive ability that would suit your build, like increasing Dexterity or Intelligence, this wolf variant has a much more significant impact when raising your Endurance. This helm adds +2 Endurance, giving you extra stamina and equipment load, which is a heavier bonus than most armor pieces in Elden Ring.
- Besides that, this head armor has better resistance against physical attacks than other helms on this list.
- The easiest way to get one of these wolf-variant Imp Heads is by killing the Wolf-Headed Imps carrying Forked Greatswords in the Catacombs scattered throughout the map.
Talismans are a great way to raise your attributes as well as boost your defensive and offensive stats without adding too much weight. For your Elden Ring’s Prisoner build, the best talismans are the ones that increase your FP, Dexterity, Intelligence, or, ideally, several stats simultaneously. Keeping that in mind, here’s the optimal talisman set to amplify your build to the next level:
|Erdtree's Favor +2||Raises maximum HP, stamina, and equip load||1.5|
|Cerulean Amber Medallion +2||Vastly raises maximum FP||0.3|
|Rotten Winged Sword Insignia||Greatly raises attack power with successive attacks||1.4|
|Marika's Soreseal||Greatly raises attributes, but also increases damage taken||0.8|
Cerulean Amber Medallion +2
When it comes to purely maximizing FP, the Cerulean Amber Medallion +2 is your best bet with its 11% increase to your FP meter. And Since your character would heavily rely on FP, this talisman would easily give your Prisoner build that extra resource to tackle nearby enemies.
Rotten Winged Sword Insignia
The Rotten Winged Sword Insignia is an offense-based talisman that noticeably raises your damage output with successive combo attacks. It’s a better version of the regular Winged Sword Insignia talisman and encourages a fast-paced, aggressive playstyle that’s already native to most Prisoner builds.
Erdtree’s Favor +2
This is perhaps the most straightforward talisman recommendation to any build as it significantly raises three crucial attributes for a Prisoner – HP (4%), Stamina (15%), and Equip Load (10%.)
This is another attribute-raising talisman, adding +5 Levels to your build’s Mind, Intelligence, Faith, and Arcane, all of which opens an entirely new set of skills for any Prisoner. However, these buffs come at a cost, with a 15% increase in damage taken, making you more susceptible to dying in one hit by stronger attacks.
Best Spells For Prisoner Build
If you’re going for an Intelligence build as a Prisoner, you will need a versatile, agile, and reliable set of spells. This ensures you include spells good at close-range, mid-range, and long-range engagements while using FP effectively to maximize your damage output. With those requirements in mind, here’s a list of the best spells for your Prisoner build in Elden Ring:
|SPELL NAME||STAT REQUIREMENTS||FP COST PER USE||SLOT USES|
|Glintstone Pebble||Int: 10||9||1|
|Adula's Moonblade||Int: 32||27||1|
|Carian Phalanx||Int: 34||29||1|
|Terra Magica||Int: 20||24||1|
|Comet Azur||Int: 60||48||3|
The Glintstone Pebble is a reasonably straightforward spell that casts and shoots a single magic projectile. Even though this is a lightweight, early-game glintstone sorcery, it’s one of the most valuable and reliable spells for a Prisoner build and remains viable even until Elden Ring’s endgame phase.
Adula’s Moonblade is one of the few status-inflicting sorceries that summons a giant magic greatsword that slashes nearby enemies, finishing with a cold, thin breeze that blows in the attack’s direction. The highlight of this sorcery is the Frost effect that it inflicts via the draft, along with its deceptively long range that catches enemies off guard.
The Carian Phalanx is another offensive sorcery that summons nine magic blades around the user that randomly but collectively shoots off at enemies. This erratic attack pattern makes the Phalanx especially deadly in PvP, as players won’t know when the blades will hit them.
Terra Magica is the only support-based sorcery on this list, but it’s a must-have for any spellcaster. This sorcery casts a ring around the caster, and while inside this zone, it strengthens the user’s magic attacks by 35%.
The Comet Azur is an extremely powerful offensive sorcery that charges up and shoots a wide beam of energy at the enemy. This attack has incredible damage and range but limits mobility, as you cannot move while firing the comet.
My Experience With The Prisoner Build
With over a year of experience on my WaterJuice profile, I’ve tried every single starting class in-game, and the Prisoner class is undoubtedly the best starting class I’ve tested. After obtaining the items I’ve listed in the guide, I decided to do another complete walkthrough of Elden Ring, and fortunately, I was able to breeze through the bosses and challenges.
The Prisoner was one of the last starting classes I tested, so I was already familiar with the right gear for it. And thanks to its focus on Intelligence and Dexterity, I could swap between either build whenever I felt it necessary. For instance, I used my Dexterity weapons against Rennala since she has resistance to magic, and I used my Intelligence-based spells and staffs against bosses like Morgott and Maliketh, who are exploitable at long range.
That wraps up this guide on the best Elden Ring’s Prisoner build, including the stats, weapons, armor, talisman set, and spells you’ll find the most preferable for defeating foes.
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