Elden Ring BEST Prisoner Build [Weapons, Armor & Spells]

This guide covers the best stats, weapons, helms, talismans, and spells you can find and use to make the ideal Prisoner build in Elden Ring.

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.

Key Takeaways
  • Prisoner class: key attributes – Intelligence and Dexterity.
  • Optimal Elden Ring Prisoner build: Long-ranged sorcerer or melee with Dexterity weapons, based on stats.
  • Recommended attributes for this archetype: Vigor, Mind, Endurance, Dexterity, and Intelligence.
  • Weapon options: Moonveil Katana, Azur’s Glintstone Staff, Death Ritual Spear, Lusat’s Glintstone Staff, or Hoslow’s Petal Whip, depending on the primary attribute (Dexterity or Intelligence).
  • Helm choices for passive effects: Navy Hood, Cerulean Tear Scarab, Imp Statue (Wolf), and Royal Remains Helm.
  • Talismans: Cerulean Amber Medallion +2, Rotten Winged Sword Insignia, Erdtree’s Favor +2, and Marika’s Soreseal.
  • Spells: Glintstone Pebble, Adula’s Moonblade, Carian Phalanx, Terra Magica, and Comet Azur.
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Before you start, here’s a quick rundown of all the stats, weapons, armor, talisman sets, and best spells for your Prisoner build in Elden Ring:

KEY STATS WEAPONS HELMS TALISMANS SPELLS
– VIG
– MIND
– END
– DEX
– INT
– 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

Before You Start: Each attribute has a unique soft cap, which acts like a checkpoint beyond which that attribute yields smaller improvements with each upgrade. So when you reach a stat’s soft cap, there’s almost no incentive to level it further up.
prisoner build attributes
Key Stats for a Prisoner Build (Image Credits: eXputer)

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:

ATTRIBUTEDESCRIPTIONSOFT CAP
VigorIncreases Maximum HP, Fire Resistance, and ImmunityLevel 61
MindIncreases Maximum FP and FocusLevel 57
EnduranceIncreases Stamina, Equipment Load, and RobustnessLevel 50
DexterityAllows wielding and enhancement of Dexterity-scaling weaponsLevel 55
IntelligenceAllows casting of glintstone spells and enhancement of Intelligence-scaling weapons and sorceriesLevel 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. In my opinion, 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.

Here’s a list of some of the best weapons I found for this build, showcasing their stats and abilities:

WEAPON NAMEMAIN ATTRIBUTESTAT REQUIREMENTSATTRIBUTE SCALINGASH OF WAR
Moonveil KatanaDexterityStr: 12 | Dex: 18 | Int: 23Str: E | Dex: B | Int: BTransient Moonlight
Azur's Glintstone StaffIntelligenceStr: 10 | Int: 52Str: C | Int: SNone
Death Ritual SpearDexterityStr: 14 | Dex: 20 | Int: 18Str: D | Dex: B | Int: DSpearcell Ritual
Lusat's Glintstone StaffIntelligenceStr: 10 | Int: 52Str: C | Int: SNone
Hoslow's Petal WhipDexterityStr: 10 | Dex: 20Str: D | Dex: CNone (Can be applied)

Moonveil Katana

Stat Physical Magic Fire Light Holy Crit Boost
Attack 73 87 0 0 0 100 0
Guard 31 57 26 26 26 0 31

The Moonveil Katana is regarded as one of the best katanas, largely thanks to its respectable range, speed, and damage. In my opinion, the most powerful feature of the Moonveil is its Ash of War, Transient Moonlight, which launches a magical wave attack forward after the swing. 

katana
Moonveil Katana’s stats (Image Credits: eXputer)
  • Ash of War: Quick startup, wide range, easily stun-locks on a direct hit.
  • There are two variations, vertical and horizontal, that are 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

Stat Physical Magic Fire Light Holy Crit Boost Sor
Attack 24 0 0 0 0 100 0 161
Guard 25 15 15 15 15 0 15 0

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.

staff
Azur’s Glintstone Staff’s stats (Image Credit Copyright: eXputer)
  • 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

Stat Physical Magic Fire Light Holy Crit Boost
Attack 99 64 0 0 0 100 0
Guard 54 42 27 27 27 0 36

In my opinion, Death Ritual Spear is severely underrated. It 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. 

death spear
Death Ritual Spear’s stats (Screenshot by eXputer)
  • 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

Stat Physical Magic Fire Light Holy Crit Boost Sor
Attack 24 0 0 0 0 100 0 179
Guard 25 15 15 15 15 0 15 0

With similar stat requirements and scaling as the Azur’s Glintstone Staff, this weapon is a solid alternative for players prioritizing damage over speed. I would recommend using Lusat’s Glintstone Staff as it adds +12% damage to sorceries, which would help increase the potency of the more compact spells like the Glintstone Pebble and the Carian Phalanx.

staff weapon
Lusat’s Glintstone staff’s stats (Screenshot Captured by eXputer)
    • 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

Stat Physical Magic Fire Light Holy Crit Boost
Attack 110 0 0 0 0 100 0
Guard 28 17 17 17 17 0 17

If you ask me, 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.

petal whip
Hoslow’s Petal Whip’s stats (Image taken by eXputer)
    1. Whip’s attacks: Wide range, high speed, significant damage, and staggers enemies.
    2. Key feature: Inflicts potent Bleed effect, causing substantial HP loss and stagger upon Blood Loss meter fill-up.
    3. Versatility: Can apply any Ash of War, enhancing adaptability to various playstyles and builds.
    4. Strategy: Fast Ash of War combined with quick regular attacks efficiently builds up the opponent’s Blood Loss meter.
    5. 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.
Juno Hoslow's summon area east of Shack of the lofty
Juno Hoslow’s summon location near the Shack of the Lofty (Image by eXputer)
Important: Juno Hoslow is an invadable NPC who you can only fight towards the end of Tanith’s questline in Volcano Manor.

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.

Here are the Best Armor options I found for the Prisoner build:

Head ArmorPassive EffectWeight
Navy HoodIncreases Mind1.7
Royal Remains HelmSlowly replenishes HP when HP is reduced4.6
Cerulean Tear ScarabSlightly increases recovery effect of Flask of Cerulean Tears5.1
Imp Head (Wolf)Slightly raises Endurance8.1

Navy Hood

Damage Negation:

Physical Strike Slash Pierce Magic Fire Light Holy
1.4 2.1 1.8 0.9 4.6 4.7 4.4 4.5

Resistance:

Immunity Robustness Focus Vitality Poise
20 10 29 27 3

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.

hood
The Navy Hood Helm (Screenshot taken by eXputer)
    1. 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.
    2. 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.
navy hood altus plateau
The Hood atop the burning corpse in East Windmill Pasture (Screenshot Captured by eXputer)

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.

cerulean scarab
The Cerulean Tear Scarab Helm (Screenshot Grab: eXputer)
    1. Scarab helms vary in FP reduction methods, but they are often situational and limited to specific attacks.
    2. This helm stands out for those with diverse play styles reliant on FP.
    3. Easily obtainable in Sellia after navigating a few rooftops.
cerulean tear helm sellia
Cerulean Helm’s location atop Sellia’s rooftops (Screenshot Captured by eXputer)

Royal Remains Helm

Damage Negation:

Physical Strike Slash Pierce Magic Fire Light Holy
4.2 4 4.6 4.2 3.4 3.6 2.8 3.1

Resistance:

Immunity Robustness Focus Vitality Poise
15 24 10 5 7

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.

royal helm
The Royal Remains Helm (Screenshot Grab: eXputer)
    1. 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.
    2. 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.
Village of the Albinaurics liurnia
The Village of the Albinaurics Site of Grace (Image by eXputer)
    1. 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.
jar village of the albinaurics
Old Albus’ jar (Image Captured by eXputer)
    1. 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.
    2. 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.
ensha
Ensha’s invasion at Roundtable Hold (Image Credit Copyright: eXputer)
    1. 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.
royal armor
Getting the Royal Remains set after the invasion (Image Credit Copyright: eXputer)

Imp Head (Wolf)

Damage Negation:

Physical Strike Slash Pierce Magic Fire Light Holy
5.8 5.2 5.8 6.1 5 5.8 4.8 5

Resistance:

Immunity Robustness Focus Vitality Poise
35 35 20 20 10

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. I would suggest using this helm as it provides +2 Endurance, gives you extra stamina and equipment load, which is a heavier bonus than most armor pieces in Elden Ring.

imp head wolf elden ring
The Imp Head (Wolf) Helm (Screenshot Grab: eXputer)
    1. Besides that, this head armor has better resistance against physical attacks than other helms on this list.
    2. 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.

Ideal Talismans

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 I found to amplify my build to the next level:

NAMEITEM EFFECTWEIGHT
Erdtree's Favor +2Raises maximum HP, stamina, and equip load1.5
Cerulean Amber Medallion +2Vastly raises maximum FP0.3
Rotten Winged Sword InsigniaGreatly raises attack power with successive attacks1.4
Marika's SoresealGreatly raises attributes, but also increases damage taken0.8

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.

talisman
The Cerulean Amber Medallion +2 talisman (Image taken by eXputer)
Important: The underground room will be initially sealed, so you’ll have to use a Stonesword Key at the Imp Statue outside to access it.

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.

talisman
The Rotten Winged Sword Insignia talisman (Screenshot taken by eXputer)

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%).

Erdtree's Favor
Erdtree’s Favor (Image Credits Exputer)
Important: The Ashen Capital is only accessible once you beat Maliketh, the Black Blade, at the Crumbling Farum Azula.

Marika’s Soreseal

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, I found that 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.

marikas sorseal elden ring
Marika’s Soreseal talisman (Image by eXputer)

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.

The following is the list of best Spells I found for Prisoner Build:

SPELL NAMESTAT REQUIREMENTS FP COST PER USESLOT USES
Glintstone PebbleInt: 1091
Adula's MoonbladeInt: 32271
Carian PhalanxInt: 34291
Terra MagicaInt: 20241
Comet AzurInt: 60483

Glintstone Pebble

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.

glintstone spell
The Glintstone Pebble (Image Captured by eXputer)
Important: Another way to obtain the Glintstone Pebble is to buy it from the Twin Maiden Husks at the Roundtable Hold for the same amount after giving them Thops’ Bell Bearing.

Adula’s Moonblade

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.

spell
The Adula’s Moonblade (Image Credits: eXputer))

Carian Phalanx

The Carian Phalanx is another offensive sorcery that summons nine magic blades around the user that randomly but collectively shoots off at enemies. According to my observation, this erratic attack pattern makes the Phalanx especially deadly in PvP, as players won’t know when the blades will hit them.

carian spell
The Carian Phalanx (Image Source: eXputer)

Terra Magica

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%.

support sorcery
The Terra Magica (Image Captured by eXputer)
Important: To balance Terra Magica for online play, the spell’s buff in PvP reduces from 35% to 20%, so your Prisoner build will feel slightly limited in Elden Ring’s multiplayer.

Comet Azur

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.

The Comet Azur (Screenshot by eXputer)

My Experience With The Prisoner Build

hours waterjuice
My Elden Ring hours on Steam

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.

elden rinng profiles waterjuice
My Elden Ring save slots on Steam

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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Daniyal is a Guides Writer and Editor at eXputer with over one year of experience in content writing. He's had a passion for tech and gaming for more than 15 years. Ever since his first console, the PS2, he's constantly branching off to different genres, and his go-to at the moment is the Souls experience pioneered by FromSoftware, which is evident by his 1,500+ hours of game time on Elden Ring. You can learn some more about Daniyal's gaming journey on his Steam & Xbox profiles.

Experience: 1+ Years || Mainly Covers Guides || Education: Bachelors in Computer Sciences.

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