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    Character Build Guide by melchaios

    Version: 1.0 | Updated: 11/24/12 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    				DARK SOULS
    HOW TO MAKE A BUILD: General aspects, basic concepts and practical
    examples Ver. 1.0
    Welcome to my first FAQ... Created by Melchaios
    Copyright 2012 Melchaios
    Disclaimer: This FAQ is intended for new players, and intermediate players who
    still have trouble making builds. If the concepts described here seem to
    elemental or conventional for you, then you should start spicing things up by
    getting creative and making unconventional combinations :). You can also just
    check the APENDIX section to watch seasoned players from Dark souls giving
    advice and insight into advanced techniques. The FAQ just covers the
    fundamentals, and doesn't delve into specific gear. This FAQ is intended to be
    used closely with one of the Wikis for additional information:
    http://darksoulswiki.wikispaces.com/, http://darksouls.wikidot.com/. Credit for
    the development of this document goes to Melchaios, credit for additional
    information taken from other players either literally or as base material is
    given to the respective authors either by stating it in the document, or
    sharing a link to the original post. All trademarks and copyrights contained in
    this document are owned by their respective trademark and copyright holders.
    English is not my natal language, I've tried to prevent grammar mistakes as
    best as I could, but if I missed anything I apologize beforehand. I also
    apologize if the FAQ ended up being too long for its own sake, just give it a
    shot would you. Feel free to write suggestions, questions and impressions to
    melchaios@hotmail.com; however, I won't receive suggestions to add glitches,
    hacks or any other form of foul play.
    [STATRI] 2. GET YOUR STATS RIGHT: Classification, scaling, Physical stats,
    Ethereal stats, Constitution stats, Other stats.
    WILCAR.A) Pyromancy:
    i)	Fire balls
    ii)	Combustions
    iii)	Fire discharge spells
    iv)	Storms
    v)	Buffs
    vi)	Status inducers.
    WILCAR.B) Elemental refinement
    WILCAR.C) Family masks
    SUITUP.A) Poise:
    i)	Toughest
    ii)	Tough
    iii)	Average
    iv)	Weak.
    SUITUP.B) Mobility:
    i)	Fastest
    ii)	Fast
    iii)	Normal
    SUITUP.C) The burden of armors
    i)	Light sets
    ii)	Medium sets
    iii)	Heavy sets
    SUITUP.D) How to make a suit:
    i)	Poise oriented
    ii)	Mobility oriented
    SUITUP.E) Suit categories
    i)	Light suits (LghS)
    	i.a) LghS 1
    	i.b) LghS 2
    	i.c) LghS 3
    ii)	Medium suits (MedS)
    	ii.a) MedS 1
    	ii.b) MedS 2
    	ii.c) MedS 3
    	ii.d) MedS 4
    iii)	Heavy suits (HvyS)
    	iii.a) HvyS 1
    	iii.b) HvyS 2
    iv)	Super suits (SupS)
    	iv.a) SupS 1
    	iv.b) SupS 2
    	iv.c) SupS 3
    [ARMTHE] 5. ARMED TO THE TEETH: Stunlocking, Weapon speed.
    ARMTHE.A) Daggers
    i)	Bandit's knife
    ii)	Parrying dagger
    iii)	Priscilla's dagger
    iv)	Dark silver tracer
    ARMTHE.B) Straight swords
    i)	Sunlight straight sword
    ii)	Balder side sword
    iii)	Darksword
    ARMTHE.C) Great swords
    i)	Claymore
    ii)	Flamberge
    iii)	Moonlight Greatsword
    iv)	True Greatsword of Artorias
    v)	Man Serpent Greatsword
    vi)	Stone Greatsword
    vii)	Obsidian Greatsword
    ARMTHE.D) Ultra Great swords
    i)	Zweihander
    ii)	Greatsword
    iii)	Demon Great Machete
    ARMTHE.E) Curved swords
    i)	Falchion
    ii)	Painting guardian sword
    iii)	Shotel
    iv)	Gold tracer
    ARMTHE.F) Katanas
    i)	Uchigatana
    ii)	Laito
    iii)	Washing Pole
    ARMTHE.G) Curved Great swords
    i)	Murakumo
    ii)	Gravelord sword
    ARMTHE.H) Piercing swords
    i)	Rapier
    ii)	Ricard's rapier
    iii)	Velka's rapier
    ARMTHE.I) Axes
    i)	Various
    ii)	Golem axe
    ARMTHE.J) Great axes
    i)	Greataxe
    ii)	Demon's greataxe
    iii)	Stone Greataxe/Dragon King greataxe
    iv)	Black Knight Greataxe
    ARMTHE.K) Hammers
    i)	Various
    ARMTHE.L) Great hammers
    i)	Great club
    ii)	Large club
    iii)	Grant
    ARMTHE.M) Fist weapons
    i)	Claws
    ARMTHE.N) Spears
    i)	Winged spear/Spear
    ii)	Partizan
    iii)	Dragonslayer spear
    iv)	Demon's spear
    v)	Channeler's trident
    ARMTHE.O) Pole weapons
    i)	Gargoyle's halberd
    ii)	Black Knight halberd
    iii)	Giant's halberd
    iv)	Scythe
    v)	Great Scythe
    vi)	Lifehunt Scythe
    ARMTHE.P) Whips
    ARMTHE.Q) Bows:
    i)	Various
    ARMTHE.R) Great bows:
    i)	Dragonslayer Greatbow
    ARMTHE.S) Crossbows:
    i)	Avelyn
    ARMTHE.T) Shields
    COMPLE.A) Rings:
    i)	Oriented at melee and mobility:
    	i.a) Cloranthy ring
    	i.b) Havel's ring
    	i.c) Red Tearstone ring
    	i.d) Leo ring
    	i.e) Wolf ring
    	i.f) Hornet ring
    	i.g) Darkwood grain ring
    	i.h) Ring of Fog
    	i.i) Ring of Favor and Protection
    ii)	Oriented at spells:
    	ii.a) Bellowing Dragoncrest ring
    	ii.b) Lingering Dragoncrest ring
    	ii.c) Dusk crown ring
    	ii.d) White seance/Darkmoon seance rings
    	ii.e) Ring of the Sun's firstborn
    	ii.f) Ring of the Sun Princess
    COMPLE.B) Special clothing:
    i)	Family masks
    ii)	Crown of Dusk
    iii)	Crown of the Dark sun
    iv)	Armor of thorns
    COMPLE.C) Shields:
    i)	Target shield/buckler
    ii)	Heater shield
    iii)	Tower Kite/Caduceus Kite shields
    iv)	Sunlight shield
    v)	Black Knight shield
    vi)	Crest shield
    vii)	Dragon crest shield
    viii)	Grass crest shield
    ix)	Status resistance shields
    x)	Sanctus
    xi)	Eagle shield
    xii)	Havel's greatshield
    xiii)	Artorias' greatshields
    xiv)	Giant's shield
    COMPLE.D) Casting items:
    i)	Catalysts:
    	i.a) Ooacile ivory catalyst
    	i.b) Sorcerer's/Beatrice's/Izalith catalysts
    	i.c) Logan's catalyst
    	i.d) Manus' catalyst
    	i.e) Tin Crystallization catalyst
    	i.f) Tin Darkmoon catalyst
    ii)	Talismans:
    	ii.a) Thorolund talisman
    	ii.b) Canvas talisman
    	ii.c) Ivory/Sunlight talismans
    	ii.d) Darkmoon talisman
    	ii.e) Velka's talisman
    COMPLE.E) Consumables:
    i)	Healing items:
    	i.a) Estus flasks
    	i.b) Humanities/twin humanities/Fire Keeper soul
    	i.c) Mosses
    ii)	Attacking/nerfing items:
    	ii.a) Dragon stones
    	ii.b) Firebombs
    	ii.c) Poison throwing knives
    	ii.d) Lloyd's talisman
    	ii.e) Dung pies
    iii)	Defensive/buffing items:
    	iii.a) Repair powder
    	iii.b) Green blossom
    	iii.c) Weapon buffs
    	iii.d) Silver pendant
    SORCER.A) Projectiles:
    i)	Soul Arrows
    ii)	Soul Spears
    iii)	Dark orb
    iv)	Dark bead
    SORCER.B) Buffs:
    i)	Magic weapons
    ii)	Concealing spells
    SORCER.C) Tracking:
    i)	Soul masses
    ii)	Pursuers
    SORCER.D) Other:
    i)	Dark fog
    ii)	White Dragon breath
    MIRACL.A) Projectiles:
    i)	Lighting spears
    ii)	Emit Force
    MIRACL.B) AoE:
    i)	Forces
    ii)	Gravelord swords
    iii)	Vow of silence
    iv)	Tranquil walk of peace
    MIRACL.C) Buffs:
    i)	Barriers
    ii)	Miracle weapons
    iii)	Karmic justice
    MIRACL.D) Heals:
    i)	Heal
    ii)	Great Heal Excerpt
    iii)	Great Heal
    iv)	Soothing Sunlight
    v)	Replenishment
    COVNAN.A) Way of White
    COVNAN.B) Princess Guard
    COVNAN.C) Darkmoon Blade:
    i)	Blue eye orb
    ii)	Darkmoon blade covenant ring
    iii)	Darkmoon talisman
    iv)	Darkmoon weapon
    COVNAN.D) Chaos servant
    COVNAN.E) Forrest hunters:
    i)	Darkwood grain ring
    ii)	Murakumo
    iii)	Cat ring
    iv)	Fog ring
    COVNAN.F) Warrior of Sunlight:
    i)	Lighting spear
    ii)	Great lighting spear
    iii)	Sunlight spear
    COVNAN.G) Gravelord Servant:
    i)	Eye of Death
    ii)	Gravelord sword dance
    iii)	Gravelord greatsword dance
    iv)	Gravelord sword
    COVNAN.H) Path of the Dragon:
    i)	Dragon head stone
    ii)	Dragon torso stone
    iii)	Dragon eye
    COVNAN.I) Dark Wraiths:
    i)	Cracked Red eye orbs
    ii)	Red eye orb
    iii)	Darkwraith set and sword
    iv)	Dark hand
    OBUILD.A) Hybrid builds:
    i)	Primary physical:
    	i.a) Mage Knight
    	i.b) Cleric Knight
    	i.c) Rogue Sorcerer
    	i.d) Rogue Priest
    ii)	Primary ethereal:
    	ii.a) Paladin
    	ii.b) Battle Mage
    OBUILD.B) Pure physical builds:
    i)	Polar oriented:
    	i.a) Barbarian
    	i.b) Ranger
    ii)	Even oriented (Quality build):
    	ii.a) Mercenary
    OBUILD.C) Pure constitution builds:
    i)	Pure constitution:
    	i.a) Heavy knight
    OBUILD.D) Pure caster builds:
    i)	Polar oriented:
    	i.a) Saint
    	i.b) Warlock
    ii)	Even oriented:
    	ii.a) Sage
    OBUILD.E) Environmental builds
    OBUILD.F) Weapon oriented builds:
    i)	True Greatsword of Artorias:
    	i.a) Slayer Artorias
    ii)	Havel's Greatshield:
    	ii.a) Havel's acolyte
    iii)	Greatshield of Artorias:
    	iii.a) Defender Artorias
    iv)	Lifehunt Scythe:
    	iv.a) Crimson reaper
    v)	Golem  axe:
    	v.a) Iron Lumberjack
    vi)	Grant:
    	vi.a) Mighty Maiden
    vii)	Dragon weapons:
    	vii.a) Dragon slayer
    OBUILD.G) Other builds
    i)	The all or nothing build:
    	i.a) Kamikaze Dragonoid
    ii)	Status inducing build:
    	ii.a) Toxic Crusader
    OBUILD.H) Evening out stats
    OBUILD.I) Conclusions
    APENDX.A) Backstabs
    APENDX.B) Parrying
    APENDX.C) Other advanced tactics
    APENDX.D) Pyromancy techniques
    APENDX.E) Lore
    APENDX.F) Dex stat and casting time
    APENDX.G) Best places to PVP
    APENDX.H) PVP youtube channels
    APENDX.I) Walkthroughs/Humor
    What is a build?. Seasoned gamers with experience in RPGs know that in order to
    get the most out of a character class, you have to optimize stats, weaponry and
    equipment to cater for your specific needs as a player. The wrong abilities for
    the right character can result in an unstable combination, maximizing your
    weaknesses for the sake of having a particular strength that is just not for
    you. All this will eventually hold you back once you go into competitive
    ground, turning your apparently capable char (at least against CPU enemies)
    into a mediocre competitor. Hence the need to define a particular area of
    strength for your char, boosting stats and finding equipment that will exploit
    so called strength; and dumping all other factor that are just in the way. This
    last phrase is the definition of a build.
    What is different in Dark Souls (DkS) in terms of building a char?. Contrary to
    other RPGs in which abilities and equipment are restricted to the class you
    chose at the beginning of the game, DkS allows you to equip any spell, weapon
    or armor as long as you have the needed stats. Hence, you can expect a great
    deal of mixed builds in this game.
    Great! Does that mean I'll own PVP once I get my build right?. NO!!!. Similar
    to a car race, a well-tuned machine is nothing without a competent driver to
    use it. To be a good online player first of all you need to master the game and
    its many eccentricities. A good build is the cherry at the top of the cake, a
    tool that will give you the edge you need to survive a match, but be wary that
    it is neither indispensable nor absolute in your experience as a player. It is
    also true though that in a race between equally skilled drivers, the one with
    the best car will probably win the match. In one simple phrase: a good build
    will give you the best results at your current skill level.
    For purposes of classification, Stats will now be divided into 4 broad
    categories: physical stats, ethereal stats, constitution stats and other stats.
    Scaling: refers to the capability of a weapon or skill to improve its efficacy
    with the raise of a particular stat. There are 6 grades of scaling (from top to
    bottom): S, A, B, C, D and E. The scaling benefit is also dependent on how much
    a stat has been raised, after 45-50 points you will start to get "low benefits"
    with each point raised.
    We will also give each category breakpoint values, "Minimum" are the least
    values you should have, "Average" is the usual value most builds occupy,
    "Maximum" is the maximum value recommended and is usually coupled to the low
    benefits breakpoint.
    Physical stats: Strength (Str) and Dexterity (Dex) will be reviewed here. These
    stats serve two main purposes for your build: the weapons you will be able to
    wield, and the scaling damage of such weapons (remember that two handing your
    weapon will raise your Str by 50%). Minimum values: the necessary to wield the
    primary weapon you choose; Average value: around 25-35, the objective is to
    optimize weapon damage or have backup weapons of different classes; Maximum
    value: 45-50, this will allow you to wield nearly all weapons 1-handed and
    makes the breakpoint for the low benefits scaling.
    Ethereal stats: Intelligence (Int) and Faith (Fth) will be reviewed here. These
    stats serve 4 main purposes for your build: the weapons you will be able to
    wield, the sorceries/miracles you will be able to use, the scaling damage of
    some weapons, and the magic adjustment obtained by catalysts/talismans. Minimum
    values: baseline values, they could be 0 and you could still have a viable
    build; Average value: the necessary to use certain weapons/sorceries/miracles
    you may want (example: heal), 25-30 will allow you to use nearly all of the
    most useful sorceries/miracles for PVP; Maximum value: 35-50, allows use of
    advanced miracles and sorceries, gives you the best magic adjustment for the
    best catalysts/talismans (logan's, tin crystallization, Manus', darkmoon),
    breakpoint for the low benefit scaling of weapons.
    Constitution stats: Vitality (Vit), Endurance (End) and Attunement (Att) will
    be reviewed here. Vit is only useful for giving you a larger pool of HP.
    Minimum value: 20-25, having less than this will greatly increase the chances
    of getting one-shot by the enemy; Average value: 35-50, gives you a generous HP
    value and is the breakpoint for low benefits; Maximum value: anything above 50,
    some dudes like the absolute maximum HP even if it's not convenient to raise
    Vit that much. End serves 2 purposes for your build: raising the stamina bar,
    and raising equip load. Minimum value: 15-25, if you're a pure caster this
    value could be enough for your build, otherwise it is not recommended; Average
    value: 30-40, stamina bar maxes out at 40, this value should be enough for
    almost any melee based char; Maximum value: 45-65 and sometimes above, these
    values are just intended for very heavy builds who want faster movement speed.
    Att sole purpose is to raise the number of slots you get for
    sorceries/miracles/pyromancies. Minimum: 10 = 1 slot, 12 = 2 slots, 14 = 3
    slots; Average: 16 = 4 slots, 19 = 5 slots, 23 = 6 slots; Maximum: 28 = 7
    slots, 34 = 8 slots, 41 = 9 slots, 50 = 10 slots.
    Other stats: Resistance (Res) and Humanity (Hum) will be reviewed here. These
    stats rarely have a particular role in any build, hence they're usually left
    aside. Res raises all your defenses, the benefits are underwhelming none the
    less and as such nobody bothers with it. Average value: baseline; Maximum
    value: anything above. Hum is a very particular stat, it is not dependent on
    leveling up and as such shouldn't be considered towards your total soul level.
    It's useful for the Chaos pyromancies and the scaling of some weapons, it also
    gives the benefit of light resistances to all kinds of damage (the equivalent
    of a medium torso armor at the max 99 Hum). Your immediate goal in these
    circumstances is to get Hum to 10, which is the breakpoint for Chaos scaling;
    after that just try to maintain Hum as high as you can to get the additional
    These are gameplay tools that any build can use, hence the title. They're used
    for complementation of your build, as they allow either variety or more
    efficient use of your equipment.
    WILCAR.A)Pyromancy: You only need an attunement slot (a lousy 10 points in Att)
    , a pyromancy flame, and an actual pyromancy spell to use. It doesn't have
    stat based scaling, it doesn't ask you to sacrifice anything in return,
    it's highly effective in the right hands...It's the Mother Teresa of
    spellcraft!!, it always provides and asks nothing in return. Given the
    high potential and low requirements, it's fitted for everybody, from the
    hulking full Giant's armor Greatsword wielding brute, to the methodical
    Dusk Crowned magic based spellcaster. It is always recommended you get
    your Pyromancy flame to the highest level, the only exception is when
    using Power Within for which you need an additional ungraded flame (this
    seems to be unnecessary after the last patch, tested it and Power within
    seems to do the same damage regardless of the flame's grade). The best
    pyromancy tools for PVP are these (Watch the APENDIX section for a good
    tutorial about techniques designed for pyromancy).
    i)	Fireballs (Great Chaos Fireball, Great Fireball and to a lesser extent
    Fire Orb): Although you can use them as direct ranged attacks, hurling
    them to the ground without lock-on will probably give you better
    results. This will make an explosion with an area of effect (AoE) that
    gives these spells its true power; you can even cast them to your own
    feet if an opponent tries to charge at you. Great Chaos fireball is
    the best in terms of damage and it will also leave the ground soaked
    with lava. The drawbacks are the fact that it takes up 2 attunement
    slots, and the need for humanity to pump the damage. Great Fireball is
    also a good option, it may not do as much damage but it only takes 1
    slot. Fire Orb isn't the most recommended of the bunch, but you could
    use it if you don't have access to the previous ones; or if you really
    like fireballs and would like extra casts.
    ii)	Combustions (Great Combustion, Combustion, Black Flame): Fast melee
    pyromancies that have a very decent radius. Great Combustion/Black
    Flame are the most recommended because of their higher damage. Normal
    Combustion however is also very useful, especially if you're just
    trying to finish off an enemy with low health.
    iii)	Fire Discharge spells (Fire Whip, Chaos Fire Whip, Fire Surge): These
    are mainly to extract some casual damage out of unwary opponents, and
    to finish them off when low on health. Whips and surge have different
    animations. All are equally recommended, just remember Chaos Fire Whip
    scales with Humanity and occupies 2 slots.
    iv)	Storms (Chaos Firestorm, Fire Tempest): Fire Tempest is the most
    recommended as it only takes one slot and still makes brutal damage.
    Chaos Firestorm takes 2 slots and leaves lava residue, I personally
    prefer the first one.
    v)	Buffs (Power Within, Iron Flesh): Power Within raises your damage by
    40%, but drains your health at an alarming speed. It is ideal for
    aggressive players who don't mind losing health for the sake of
    pumping damage. To make it more tolerable there are some precautions
    you should have: Use with ungraded pyromancy flame (again, this no
    longer seems to be true, I'll still mention this in future references
    to the spell since some gamers may play an unpatched version while
    offline), Lingering Dragoncrest ring and Sanctus shield (combine as
    preferred). Iron Flesh isn't the colossal spell it once was, and it
    doesn't have much use in PVP now a days. However it still grants you
    amazing resistance and infinite poise, it can still be viable when
    used at close quarters with a horizontal swinging weapon, or with AoE
    vi)	Status inducers (Toxic mist, Poison mist): Toxic and Poison are mainly
    targeted as surprise attacks that will give you a slight advantage if
    they manage to induce the status. They don't deal immediate damage,
    and so they see favor in the eyes of patient players (See a specific
    build aimed at causing status in the OVERALL BUILDS section).
    WILCAR.B)Elemental refinement: I found this cool weapon and I have the stats
    to barely wield it, but my scaling is so poor I can't use it effectively...
    worry not, that's the reason elemental refinement was created. The
    Lighting treatment from the Giant Blacksmith in Anor Londo, or the
    Fire/Chaos treatment from Vamos in the catacombs, gives you the chance to
    broaden weapon choices to new horizons. The only price to pay is not
    being able to enchant such weapons. Example: Str build that has a wide
    arrange of Great Weapons, but little choice for spears (Dex based); make
    a lighting spear and problem solved, it may not be a powerhouse of a
    spear but it's at least effective. Integrate these refinements to your
    build, and never restrict yourself to a limited set of weapons.
    WILCAR.C)Family masks: So useful, and yet so damn hideous. Mask of the Father
    raises your equip burden, and it's basic in allowing you to achieve fast
    rolling when using heavy gear. Mask of the Mother boosts HP, and it's
    ideal for tank-like characters. Mask of the Child boosts stamina
    recovery, and it finds favor in quick builds that roll all over the
    place. The only downside is their awful design!. If you can get past this
    fact, and the low resistance they give, you will surely find some of the
    finest headgears the game has to offer.
    Contrary to most RPGs in which the choice of equipment is based solely on the
    amount of resistance they give, gear tendencies in DkS give priority to other
    factors: Poise and Mobility. The combination of different headgears, torsos,
    gauntlets and leggings with the goal of reaching certain breakpoints is the
    essence of dressing up your character. From now on we will always refer to
    these combinations of armor and clothing as "suits". There are 5 rules you
    should always consider when making a suit:
    *	Always try to achieve fast rolling speed as long as it doesn't break
    	your build.
    *	Never, under any circumstance leave your character on "fat rolling"
    *	Poise is nearly always inversely proportional to speed, and vice versa.
    	The only exception being the use of the Wolf ring.
    *	When torn between 2 armor pieces with the same weight, choose the one
    	with the best poise no matter the resistances. Only if they also have
    	the same poise you can choose the one with the most resistance.
    *	If aesthetics are too important for you... Ignore all of the above
    	rules and the rest of this section for that matter.
    SUITUP.A)Poise (Description and values taken straight from EWGF's GameFaqs post
    on Poise): [Quote] "Well, Poise still essentially works like a modified
    buildup meter. Every time you take a hit, that hit reduces your Poise by
    a set amount. It's in a constant state of regeneration however. When it
    reaches 0 you will be susceptible to stuns. Damage and other things don't
    modify Poise damage. Some R2s and Dashing/Roll/Jumping attacks do inflict
    greater poise damage however (notably many swings that cause knockdown).
    In these cases adding more Poise will modify a few into stuns."
    There are 4 major Poise breakpoints depending on the weapons that can be
    tanked at such poise value (All weapon categories are taken as if they
    were held with 2 hands and exclusively with R1 attacks, you can see the 1
    handed values between the parentheses):
    i)	Toughest: 76 poise (51 for 1 handed attacks): Ultra Greatswords,
    Great Axes, Great Hammers.
    ii)	Tough: 53 poise (36 for 1 handed attacks): Great curved swords,
    Greatswords, Axes, Hammers.
    iii)	Average: 31 poise (21 for 1 handed attacks): Curved swords,
    Katanas, Straight swords, Whips, Spears, Pole weapons.
    iv)	Weak: 8 poise (6 poise for 1 handed attacks and Fist weapons):
    Rapiers, Daggers. 0 Poise will also be included here.
    SUITUP.B)Mobility: Contrary to other RPGs in which the ability to evade attacks
    is dependent on fixed numbers and chance, DkS decides to leave it all in
    your hands (ok... and maybe a little bit of luck sometimes). With that in
    mind, good mobility will play a key role not only on your evading
    tactics, but also in your capacity to engage the opponent at close
    quarters. As you may already know, moving speed depends on the percentage
    of equip burden you're carrying: 25% or less grants fast speed, 25-50%
    grants medium speed, 50-100% will give you slow speed ("fat roll"), and
    above 100% leaves you unable to roll and run ("broken"). Although it has
    been proved that there are more rolling speeds than meets the eye:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22jsJ8D2WKw; for purposes of
    classification we will only integrate 3 into our suit (fat rolling and
    broken speeds are out for obvious reasons):
    i)	Fastest:  It requires less than 25% burden and the Darkwood Grain
    Ring. The special animation given by this ring (backflip) has the
    fastest rolling execution and recovery (see below for more info on
    this ring). It gives decent benefits over the next speed cluster,
    and it's a great option if you don't mind sacrificing a ring slot.
    ii)	Fast: It just requires less than 25% burden. The normal fast speed
    anyone can achieve even without the use of special rings. This is
    the speed you should always try to achieve.
    iii)	Normal: Burden between 25-50%. The medium speed is the slowest
    common denominator you should aim at, slower speeds are unfit for
    serious PVP.
    SUITUP.C)The burden of armors: Armors can be divided according to their weight
    burden in three categories.
    i)	Light sets (0-18.5 pounds per full set): Wanderer, Thief, Bandit,
    Hunter, Sorcerer, Pyromancer, Cleric, Warrior, Shadow, black
    sorcerer, channeler, Maiden, Antiquated, Painting guardian, all
    Hollow sets, Dingy, Gwyndolin Moonlight, Big Hat, Gold Hemmed,
    Crimson, Black, Witch, Xanthous, Chain, Great lord, Chester, Lord's
    ii)	Medium sets (18.6-36.9 pounds per full set): Knight, Iron, Eastern,
    Adventurer's, Balder, Thorns, Dark, Elite Knight, Ornstein,
    Crystalline, Brass, Favor, Catarina, Silver Knight, Black Knight,
    Paladin, Way of White, Steel, Artorias, Gough's.
    iii)	Heavy sets (37-76.9 pounds per full set): Black iron, Giant armor,
    Havel's, Smough, Iron golem, Stone knight, Stone Guardian.
    SUITUP.D)How to make a suit: Choose a focus on your suit, whether Poise or
    Mobility oriented. Then set a specific breakpoint as your goal, and try
    endless combinations of clothing until you find the set perfect for your
    build. Remember that weapons wielded are an important part at this point,
    since they will also go into your total burden. Auxiliary gear including
    Mask of the Father, Havel's ring, Ring of Favor/Protection, Wolf ring and
    Darkwood Grain ring, are essential for achieving your goals. The
    Endurance stat plays a primary role too, and you should raise it to the
    threshold you see fit for your suit.
    i)	Poise oriented: Aiming to a higher poise at the expense of
    sacrificing mobility is good for 4 things: priority when you swing
    your weapon at the same time the enemy does (he gets staggered but
    you don't), generally higher defense values, prevent interruption
    while casting spells, and of course facilitation of lock-on/pivot
    backstabbing (although you may know by now this is heavily frowned
    upon by many players, check the APENDIX section to learn about
    backstabs). The most sensible breakpoint without much mobility
    compromise is either 31 or 36, as this will tank most weapons
    without the need for heavy gear. The golden rule of poise: a little
    poise is always better than no poise... What I mean is that if
    you're going for the super light nearly naked clothes, at least
    wear a piece with decent poise, it won't break up your mobility and
    will prove useful when you least expect it (more so if you use Wolf
    ii)	Mobility oriented: Aiming at a higher speed at the expense of
    sacrificing poise will give you some advantages too: better evading
    technique, much better rolling attacks, higher likelihood of
    fleeing an ambush, and of course facilitation of rolling backstabs
    (also frowned upon, check the APENDIX to learn about backstabs).
    The most sensible tendency without much poise compromise is to aim
    for Fast-speed with the help of auxiliary gear. The golden rule of
    mobility: it's about skill, not speed... If you've tried endless
    combinations of gear and you just can't get the fast/fastest speed
    without screwing up your build, worry not; remember that in this
    game a decent player will always hold his own against anyone
    regardless of speed.
    SUITUP.E)Suit categories: Once you have put together your set of clothes, the
    resulting suit will end up in one of the next categories depending on 4
    factors: the poise breakpoint (P), the mobility breakpoint (M), the
    amount of auxiliary gear required (AG), and the End value used (see above
    in the GET YOUR STATS RIGHT section). Note: I tried to stratify suits as
    best as I could, but though in the next paragraphs I make it sound strict
    and mechanic, the reality is that this is a very inventive and dynamic
    process. Bear in mind it is very likely some combinations you come up
    with won't exactly fit into any of the descriptions given below.
    i)	Light suits (LghS): When judging a build by its cover, these guys
    with their pajama like clothes and light weapons are usually
    regarded as "light builds". As the name suggests, they excel in
    mobility and their game revolves around rolling all over the place
    and squeeze damage during very tight opening windows. Wizards may
    like these too for their evading capabilities. Low End requirements
    are a plus, since you can sink the points in more important stats
    for your build.
    i.a) LghS 1 (P. weak, M. fastest, AG. Single item, End minimum/average):
    Darkwood Grain ring is necessary. This suit is more along the lines of
    ninja/assassin builds who usually resort to melee fighting.
    i.b) LghS 2 (P. weak, M. fast, AG. None, End minimum/average): Two ring
    slots free for whatever you want. More compatible with mages who want the
    extra slots for rings that will pump their damage.
    i.c) LghS 3 (P. average, M. fastest, AG. Single/multiple item, End
    average): Good for melee fighters, Darkwood necessary, if help is needed
    to reach the mobility breakpoint you can resort to other auxiliary gear.
    They will usually carry light weapons like rapiers. They have the benefit
    of being able to tank most weapons, and being incredibly fast. A "LghS 1"
    suit can be turned into this one if you use a Wolf ring + Dark wood
    ii)	Medium suits (MedS): A big portion of the PVP community will be
    around this level. They can absorb hits from most weapons without
    staggering and still have decent speed. End investment is usually
    higher than the above, but it's still pretty moderate.
    ii.a) MedS 1 (P. average, M. fast, AG. None/single item, End average):
    Contrary to the "LghS 3" suits, these ones are not as fast but they
    compensate by having more ring slots for build purposes. They tank most
    weapons except Great and Ultra Great ones, and they will usually wield
    light weapons too. Dex builds usually aim for this. A "LghS 2" suit can
    be turned into this one if you use a Wolf ring.
    ii.b) MedS 2 (P. average, M. fast, AG. Single/multiple item, End
    average/maximum): Same as "MedS 1" suits, but because of their tendency
    to carry heavy weapons they need extra help either by using additional
    auxiliary gear, or pumping End to levels above average. Str builds
    usually fall in this category. A "LghS 2" suit can be turned into this
    one if you use a Wolf ring.
    ii.c) MedS 3 (P. average, M. normal, AG. None, End average): Less End
    investment and more disposition of ring slots, you can also wield heavy
    ii.d) MedS 4 (P. tough, M. fast, AG. Single/multiple item, End
    average/maximum): They get to have even higher poise which means only
    Ultra Greats will stagger them, and they can move fast at the cost of the
    generous use of auxiliary gear, as well as some End points above the 40
    average. They usually carry light weapons, since heavy ones will usually
    screw up their suit and take it to a "HvyS 1". A "MedS 1" suit can be
    turned into this one if you use a Wolf ring.
    iii)	Heavy suits (HvyS): Given the label of "heavy builds", they excel
    in poise tanking at the expense of losing mobility. They still can
    get away with moderate Endurance investment, and they don't have
    the need to over rely on auxiliary gear.
    iii.a) HvyS 1 (P. tough, M. normal, AG. None/single item, End average): A
    very good choice of suit if you don't mind the speed. It allows for very
    liberal choice of clothing and weapons regardless of weight, and you'll
    still have at least 1 ring slot to complement your build. A "MedS 3" suit
    can be turned into this one if you use a Wolf ring.
    iii.b) HvyS 2 (P. toughest, M. normal, AG. Single/multiple item, End
    average/maximum): Your average full Giant's set, heavy weapon wielding
    opponent. They usually need a fair amount of help to pull it off though,
    whether auxiliary gear combos or a supra normal amount of Endurance. A
    "HvyS 1" suit can be turned into this one if you use a Wolf ring and
    complement with End.
    iv)	Super suits (SupS): There are some people who want the whole
    package, a full poised and fast tank that will stop at nothing to
    meet its target. It doesn't come without a price though, they
    always need to pump End at least to average and many times to very
    high levels. Given the potential these suits have to break a
    balanced build, it's necessary to use much if not all the auxiliary
    gear available. There are exceptions to these rules if you manage
    to be clever enough in your mixing of equipment and rings, but
    overall it is very viable to make these suits. Constitution builds
    (see the "OVERALL BUILDS" section) have the best chance of pulling
    it off without sacrificing too much. A very common SupS used: End
    at least to 40, Mask of the Father, naked torso, Brass gauntlets,
    Havel's leggings, and different combinations of rings to meet your
    iv.a) SupS 1 (P. tough, M. fastest, AG. Multiple item, End maximum): High
    poised and backflipping. The Havel's + Darkwood grain ring combo is
    imperative, as well as complementation with Mask of the Father and End as
    needed. The LghS can turn into this with different combinations of
    auxiliary gear, including the Wolf ring, Darkwood grain, and End/Mask of
    the father as necessary.
    iv.b) SupS 2 (P. toughest, M. fast, AG. Multiple item, End maximum): Same
    as before, just take out the Darkwood grain ring and add the ring of
    Favor/Protection. Some MedS can be turned into this one if you use a Wolf
    iv.c) SupS 3 (P. toughest, M. fastest, AG. Multiple item, End maximum
    (maybe way above the 65 max recommended)): The ultimate tank!! It
    requires the Havel's + Darkwood combo, Mask of the Father and a lot of
    End to complement. Under very specific circumstances LghS can turn into
    this one by using a Wolf + Darkwood combo.
    Weapon choice is probably one of the most important, if not THE most important,
    factor that will determine your fighting strategy. The amount of weapon classes
    and variety of attack animations makes finding the right weapon for you a soul
    searching experience. You will actually make bonds with certain weapons,
    stubbornly taking them into the battlefield even if it has caused you to lose
    the last 20 matches. Eventually you will get comfortable in your own shoes, you
    will learn your weapon's strengths and weaknesses, and finally you will be able
    win. Finding the right weapon or weapons is up to you, I will just name weapon
    classes with the best examples for each class.
    Stunlocking: refers to the ability of a weapon to land consecutive hits
    (combos) after a successful stagger of the opponent. Stunlocking capabilities
    depend on several factors: weapon class, the refinement grade of the weapon,
    the enemy's poise, and the way you exchange R1/R2 strikes. Check out the next
    link if you want to know more, again EWGF has given us some insight into the
    game's mechanics: http://www.gamefaqs.com/boards/608635-/61725574.
    Weapon speed: Although it is obvious that some weapon classes are faster than
    others, some people don't know that among a given class of weapon there are
    exemplars that stand out from their brothers. These particular weapons are
    faster in their swing by miliseconds, but that's more than enough to determine
    if they'll be able to stunlock or not. The next tests were conducted by
    BalderKnight, with the original experiment being performed by EWGF:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KMVzEIl_rs0, (watch the descriptions to look for
    the fastest weapons of each category). As general rules for weapon selection:
    if you're torn between 2 weapons of the same class, your money should go with
    the fastest one; if they're equally fast, then choose the one that can be
    enchanted; if they're both enchantable or you don't have/need weapon buffs,
    choose the one with the best raw damage.
    ARMTHE.A)Daggers: The place for dagger weapons in serious PVP is quite a
    controversial point. Some supporters claim the speed, the high critical
    rate, and the good bleed buildup make for a good backup weapon. They have
    some big low points though: they have little damage, short reach, null
    stunlocking and can only stagger weak poised opponents. I seldom see them
    used in PVP, and when I do it's not much for straight up fighting but for
    landing criticals.
    i)	Bandit's knife: is the usual choice.
    ii)	Parrying dagger: not meant to be used as an actual weapon, but as
    an offhand complement capable of parrying and dealing chip damage.
    It's not the wisest choice though, even for a parrying strategy.
    iii)	Priscilla's dagger: has some unique animations and it's the only
    weapon besides Lifehunt scythe that can cause 50% bleed damage.
    iv)	Dark Silver Tracer: The nasty toxic builup is the main appeal of
    this weapon.
    ARMTHE.B)Straight swords: Usually underused, Rapiers and Katanas tend to
    overshadow this weapon class. However they are pretty good choices:
    they're very light, with good stunlock capabilities, most are
    enchantable, decent reach and good animations.
    i)	Sunlight straight sword: The choice for Str based chars.
    ii)	Balder side sword: For Dex based builds. It has more combos than
    the previous.
    iii)	Darksword: It's a good option too if you like the R2s.
    ARMTHE.C)Great swords: One of the PVP favorites. They have very good speed for
    their weight, good damage, good stunlock, and they can stagger most
    opponents. Contrary to Ultragreats, they are competent with both 1 and 2
    handed styles. Though they were nerfed recently, they still make one of
    the best weapon choices for PVP.
    i)	Claymore: The prototype for this class. It's one of the lightest
    great swords, enchantable, fast for its class and with great
    animations. If you manage to stagger with 1 handed R1s you can make
    infinite combos (same is true for weapons of similar speed in this
    ii)	Flamberge: Same as the above, but more suited for Dex builds.
    iii)	Moonlight greatsword: A must have for mages. The raw damage may not
    be anything special, but the R2 attack makes this unique among
    other great swords. Special attack: a projectile attack that
    knockbacks opponents most of the time.
    iv)	True Greatsword of Artorias: Although it's slow for its class it
    still has great reach and it scales with all your stats, giving you
    a pretty good raw damage. It has nearly no stunlock capabilities,
    and the R2s are pretty useless.  Further down we present a specific
    build aimed at this sword, but I still think you're better off with
    a Claymore or its equals.
    v)	Man Serpent Greatsword: Many Str based players probably have their
    eyes in this sword because of the neat scaling. However it's really
    slow and thus can't combo as effectively. I would choose the
    Claymore over this any day.
    vi)	Stone Greatsword: Slow, heavy, unenchantable, and nothing special
    going on in terms of raw damage. Its special ability however makes
    this a very viable (albeit cheap) choice. Special ability: it casts
    Tranquil Walk of peace (Watch the MIRACLES thread below).
    vii)	Obsidian Greatsword: One of the best dragon weapons. It doesn't
    demand much in terms of stat requirements, it has great damage
    output for a non-scaling weapon, is enchantable, and the special
    attack is truly amazing. Special ability: A majestic AoE fire
    attack that really places this sword high among the ranks.
    ARMTHE.D)Ultra Great swords: They may be slow, but in compensation they have
    other great features. They stagger all but the highest poised enemies
    (and even they won't resist 2 consecutive attacks), amazing stunlock
    capabilities (R1 infinites), high damage, enchantable and on top of that,
    they have the strongest block of all weapons. One of their biggest flaws
    however is their relative incompetence when used one handed.
    i)	Zweihander: The quintessential example of this class. It's the
    lightest of them and is fast among their class. Probably the one
    you should go for.
    ii)	Greatsword: Identical to the Zweihander except for 2 features: it's
    2 pounds heavier and it has a better R2. The strong attack makes a
    nice thrusting move that is both faster and less punishable than
    its Zweihander equivalent.
    iii)	Demon Great Machete: I'm sorry to break it to the Str based
    players, but this weapon has too many flaws to give it priority
    over the previous examples. It is slower and hence can't stunlock,
    it's way heavier, it has much higher stat requirements and it's
    harder to get. The only thing it has going on is the amazing Str
    scale, but in my opinion it's not worth it.
    ARMTHE.E)Curved swords: Weapons of choice for many Dex based characters. They
    a lot of things going on for them: they are super-fast, very light, good
    spammers, and useful even in the left hand.
    i)	Falchion: Probably the most used out of this category, it has all
    weapon upgrade paths and it can be enchanted. Scimitar is a good
    substitute if for some reason you don't have this sword.
    ii)	Painting guardian sword: As fast as Falchion but with the ability
    to produce bleed. It has all weapon upgrades and can be enchanted
    too. I still prefer Falchion any day.
    iii)	Shotel: The best feature it has is the ability to bypass shields
    with the strong attacks. The terror of turtles.
    iv)	Gold tracer: It's getting a lot of PVP action lately. With its
    crazy attack animations, bleed buildup and super speed, a lot of
    players are favoring it. It's also probably the best weapon to be
    used in the offhand.
    ARMTHE.F)Katanas: All the PVP scene is crawling with these weapons, especially
    among Dex based players. They have the best speed/damage ratio and they
    all produce bleed effectively. The only drawback compared to the curved
    swords previously mentioned is their higher weight and lower durability.
    i)	Uchigatana: The prototype of this class.
    ii)	Laito: Makes less raw damage than the Uchigatana but let's face it,
    it's just a 5 point damage difference, hardly a valid argument for
    choosing weapons. The thing that would eventually sell you this
    sword is the unique R2 attack, a samurai like sheath draw attack.
    iii)	Washing Pole: It's the slowest of all katanas, but the higher reach
    makes it a tempting option too.
    ARMTHE.G)Curved Great swords: In terms of speed they are somewhere between
    Greatswords and Ultra Greatswords. That said, they have great stunlock
    capabilities, good reach and nice damage.
    i)	Murakumo: King of this category. It has all weapon upgrade paths,
    and can be enchanted. It's better suited for Dex characters though.
    ii)	Gravelord Sword: Inferior to Murakumo in every way. It just has one
    thing going on: the ability to cause toxin.
    ARMTHE.H)Piercing swords: Also popular among Dex characters. They pack less
    damage than previous weapons, but just like spears they can poke from a shield
    stance. They also have the advantage of being very light, just marginally
    above daggers.
    i)	Rapier: Default choice if you fancy this class
    ii)	Ricard's Rapier: Overshadows the regular rapier in my opinion. It
    has better Dex scaling and a crazy R2 move that you never forget
    once you see it.
    iii)	Velka's rapier: Hybrid Dex/Int builds should consider this option.
    It's unenchantable however, and ranks a distant third place in my
    ARMTHE.I)Axes: To be brutally honest, I don't see the appeal on these ones.
    They're relatively light and pack a decent punch, but the attack
    animations just seem a little off. The exception would be the Golem axe
    with its amazing ranged R2 attack.
    i)	Various: If you've decided to try them, just choose the one most
    compatible with your stats. Gargoyle axe for Dex, Butcher knife for
    Str, Crescent axe for Fth.
    ii)	Golem axe: The 1 handed R2 attack takes it apart from the bunch.
    It's probably the only one in this category I would consider suited
    for PVP. Special ability: creates a ranged projectile air-wave
    ARMTHE.J)Great axes: Great PVP weapons too, one of them in particular is the
    Str-build's choice. Same as ultra greats, the slow pace of the weapon is
    compensated with good stagger, high damage and in some cases infinite
    combos (Greataxe).
    i)	Greataxe: One of the prime examples in this class. This is the only
    Great axe capable of doing R1 infinites, and it also has all weapon
    upgrade paths.
    ii)	Demon's Greataxe: Another letdown for Str builds. It's slower than
    the previous and hence it can't combo, it's heavy as hell, and
    weapon requirements are very high. The R2 attack is kind of good,
    since it catches a lot of people off guard. Overall, I recommend
    the regular Greataxe over this.
    iii)	Stone Greataxe/Dragon King Greataxe: Same as Demon's, but they are
    even heavier and with higher weapon requirements. Their special
    attacks are their only saving grace, however they're not even that
    good to sacrifice stats for the sake of wielding them. Only
    recommended if you're trying to reach maximum Str levels anyway.
    Special ability: Stone Greataxe creates a tremor like attack that
    shatters the floor; Dragon King smashes the ground and creates an
    AoE explosion.
    iv)	Black Knight Greataxe (BKGA): The other great recommendation for
    this class. The BKGA is so unique among Great axes that it should
    have its own weapon class. The swing speed is faster than its great
    axe siblings, and more akin to the speed of Curved Greatswords. The
    animations are unique, with no other weapon in the game having
    them. It has a high Str scaling and it's also competent as a 1
    handed weapon. The only downside is that it can't be enchanted, and
    it only has twinkling titanite upgrade. But that doesn't mean it
    shouldn't be at the top of the heavy hitters list in PVP.
    ARMTHE.K)Hammers: Same as axes, I don't see much appeal in them when you have so
    many other better weapons. However, I have heard from PVP fellows that
    they are quite capable as a dueling weapon. The weapon combo list linked
    above claims they have infinite R1s, so I guess that makes for a good
    deal (EWGF even praises them). Many of them scale amazingly with Str.
    i)	Various: Can't make a fair recommendation here as I lack experience
    with them. If it was me, I would probably choose one with high Str
    scaling like the Mace, or one with bleed buildup like the morning
    star/reinforced club. If this doesn't fancy you, just turn them
    into elementals.
    ARMTHE.L)Great hammers: Great hammers are a mixed bag, on one hand they have
    great damage, good staggering and an amazing rolling attack (probably the best
    in the whole game). On the other hand they are very slow of course, and
    they just can't stunlock on any way. Achieving fast/fastest speed is
    paramount to exploit the rolling attack mentioned, and so it just
    complicates matters a bit more. Overall they are still a good weapon
    choice especially for Str builds, and if you were a fan of the meat
    cleaver in Demon's souls you will probably find a favorite among these.
    i)	Great Club: The prototype on this class.
    ii)	Large Club: Lower damage than the above, but it has poison buildup
    in compensation.
    iii)	Grant: Slower than the above, but it is to date the unbuffed weapon
    with the most raw damage. It has very high requirements however,
    and it's only viable in the hands of a Str/Fth hybrid.
    ARMTHE.M)Fist weapons: Similar to daggers/axes/hammers, I have some reserva-
    tions for these weapons. They seem pretty useless to me compared to other
    weapons, but still I have seen some adopters on the PVP scene.
    i)	Claws: The only one I have seen in action. Users usually exploit
    rolling attacks, chipping away damage and then returning to safety.
    It has some combos apparently (watch EWGF's combo list above), try
    at your own expense.
    ARMTHE.N)Spears: Another PVP favorite. They have the best risk/benefit ratio
    ammong all weapons, they have long reach, amazing speed, and it can be used
    behind a shield. They have mediocre damage however and they seldom
    stagger. Many of them are intended for Dex builds, but anyone can use
    them really.
    i)	Winged Spear/Spear: The common denominator for this class. Both of
    them are nearly on par, difference in damage is trivial but the
    normal spear is 1 pound lighter. Choose whichever you like most.
    I'm leaving the pike out of the list since it weights an
    unnecessary 10 pounds, and damage is same as the above mentioned.
    ii)	Partizan: The R2s are the real beauty of this weapon. It's the most
    accomplished spear as far as animations go, since it can make
    sweeping attacks to punish backstabbers or engage multiple enemies.
    iii)	Dragonslayer spear: The reach on this thing is insane, and it also
    has ranged attacks included. A great option for all Fth builds,
    although Dex/Fth hybrids could pump raw damage a little bit more.
    Special ability: shoots bolts of lightning that resemble the Light
    spear miracle.
    iv)	Demon's spear: Also has great reach, and with lighting damage
    included. Though it doesn't have a ranged attack included, it's on
    par with the Dragonslayer spear if you don't have points to spare
    in Fth (and it's much lighter).
    v)	Channeler's trident: Every magic build should have one of these.
    Damage is pretty decent and on top it has a very useful special ability.
     Special ability: Justlike the real channelers you can perform a dance that
    will buff damage for you and your allies.
    vi)     Moonlight butterfly horn: The damage is pretty bad. The Channeler's tri-
    dent or a Magic/Enchanted spear is better in this regard. The only thing it has
    is the long reach, comparable to Dragonslayer spear. If you've an Int build and
    you desire a spear, my advice would be to leave this aside and search somewhere
    ARMTHE.O)Pole weapons: Gone are the days in which pole weapons ruled the PVP
    world (in Demon's souls I mean), for in this game they've been severely nerfed.
    They still have great reach and pack decent damage, but they are kind of
    slow, and on top of that they have a really awkward delay if you fail a
    swing. They are capable as PVP weapons however and you can still see
    adopters every once in a while.
    i)	Gargoyle's halberd: The prototype of this class at least in my
    book. The R2 is the classic 360? spin, it has all the upgrade
    paths, and it's enchantable. Overall it's a decent choice.
    ii)	Black Knight halberd: Damage output is good, but if you're choosing
    this weapon over other poles it's probably because of the attack
    animations. R2's are unique among halberds and not that hard to
    connect. The main drawback is that it can't be enchanted.
    iii)	Giant's halberd: While you can say it has the benefit of having
    both physical and lighting damage, the truth is a Gargoyle's
    halberd with lighting treatment can pump more damage and weights
    considerably less. The only thing going on for this one are the
    R2s. They are savage, kind of slow thrusting attacks which can lead
    to combos. I still prefer Gargoyle's.
    iv)	Scythe: A Gargoyle's halberd specific for Dex builds.
    v)	Great Scythe: A Dex weapon also. It has completely different
    animation set, with insanely effective R2s and bleed buildup.
    Probably one of the favorites for this class.
    vi)	Lifehunt Scythe: Similar to the above, but with a better bleed
    buildup and once the status sinks in, it deals 50% HP damage.
    Further down this wiki we present a specific build for this weapon.
    ARMTHE.P)Whips: They are sooo bad. No reason to have any of these as your main
    weapon. If you want them too badly, this guy gives a demonstration of how
    to use them: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ip0kXkqR7Hs.
    ARMTHE.Q)Bows: I am not a fan of bows, and I never use them in PVP even with
    Dex builds. They can be competent weapons in the right hands of course, watch
    this player use a bow to complement his offensive:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yjWzCDWBzWw&feature=relmfu. (Also check
    the APENDIX section to learn secret techniques for bows).
    i)	Various: Can't make a good recommendation. Black Bow of Pharis and
    Long Bow can reach S scaling with Dex. Long bow seems to have
    higher raw damage, but Pharis' has a shorter loading time, making
    you capable of shooting more arrows in less time. Composite is more
    suited for Quality builds (see below in OVERALL BUILDS). And
    Darkmoon Bow is shitty, don't even bother with this last one.
    ARMTHE.R)Great bows: They have high requirements for a bow, and weight quite a
    bit. But unlike normal bows they pack some punch. Once the arrow connects
    with its target it will create a nasty knockback effect, giving you time
    to back up a little bit and maintain your distance.
    i)	Dragonslayer Greatbow: Out of the 2 options, this one gets the
    thumbs up. It's lighter and has a lower Str requirement. Gough's
    Greatbow may pick the interest of Str builders for its B scaling,
    but once again as with other Str based weapons it turns out to be a
    disappointment. Although it does have higher damage than
    Dragonslayer's, the difference is trivial and doesn't justify its
    higher weight. Dragonslayer all the way on this one.
    ARMTHE.S)Crossbows: When compared to bows, crossbows have some strengths and
    weaknesses that should be noted. Among its flaws the fact that you can't
    aim manually makes them useless in long distance, but the biggest sinner
    during a fight is the infuriating habit they have of reloading after each
    shot. On the other hand they only require 1 hand to be used, making it
    viable to have a shield up in between shots. I have seen them all being
    used in PVP with different amounts of success, and never as a main
    weapon; nevertheless there is only one crossbow you should set your eyes
    i)	Avelyn: It fires 3 consecutive shots, making the damage achieved
    quite useful. Among all kinds of bows/greatbows/crossbows, this is
    probably the one I see most on PVP. It is ideal for stopping
    enemies on the run, and for putting an abrupt end to anyone who
    tries to heal during a fight. It is a little bit towards the heavy
    side in terms of weight, but it is worth it.
    ARMTHE.T)Shields: Shields????. Yep, you can also use some shields as weapons.
    Not that I recommend it though, but if you want to try, this is pretty much
    how it would look like: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHeIKqlM0ZE.
    We will review Rings, special clothing, shields, catalysts/talismans and
    Consumable items in this thread.
    COMPLE.A)Rings: Indispensable when making a build. They don't grant active
    abilities, but their importance is so paramount that the combinations you
    decide to wear will forever influence your performance as a player.
    i)	Oriented at melee and mobility:
    i.a) Cloranthy ring: Stamina regeneration +20%. Who doesn't want
    more stamina?. After all it is the most precious resource in the
    game, as without stamina you can't do anything other than walk.
    This ring will find favor in speedy melee characters with light
    i.b) Havel's ring: Maximum equip load +50%. Since the nerfing of
    the Darkwood grain, Havel's ring is once again a must have. An
    essential part for creating your suit (see above in the SUIT UP
    i.c) Red Tearstone ring: Attack +50% when HP is below 20%. A
    gamblers ring, this one will make your last moments a truly worthy
    experience. Changes in the tide of battle are not unusual when you
    equip this.
    i.d) Leo ring: Counter damage +40% (Counter: successful attack
    while your enemy is mid swinging). This only applies to thrusting
    weapons, and of course, getting a counter is not as easy as it
    sounds. That said, I only recommend this ring for players who plan
    on turtling up and poking through the shield with spears/rapiers.
    i.e) Wolf ring: Poise +40 points. Like Havel's, a must have to
    tweak your suit as you like (see above).
    i.f) Hornet ring: Critical attack (backstabs, ripostes) +50%. You
    all know what the idea behind this ring is. It can be devastating
    under the right hands.
    i.g) Darkwood grain ring: Changes fast rolling action to a better
    one (ninja flip). It's been nerfed recently, now it only works when
    your equip load is <25%. It's still a pretty good ring, and grants
    the fastest speed in the game. Check the SUIT UP section above to
    find out more.
    i.h) Ring of Fog: Makes the player transparent. This ring is more
    for deception than it is for fighting. Its true strength relies on
    using it in crowded environments, making you tougher to find and
    allowing surprise attacks.
    i.i) Ring of Favor and Protection: Maximum HP, stamina and equip
    load +20%. One of the best rings in the game, its only drawback is
    the fact that it breaks once removed. And the fact that you can
    only get 2 per playthrough makes for a long term relationship if
    you decide to put it on.
    ii)	Oriented at spells:
    ii.a) Bellowing Dragoncrest ring: Magic damage +20% (includes
    sorceries and pyromancies). Part of every spell oriented build.
    Note: it doesn't have effect on buffs.
    ii.b) Lingering Dragoncrest ring: Increases the length of magic
    effect by 50% (includes sorceries and pyromancies). Mainly used for
    prolonging your Magic weapon buffs and Power Within.
    ii.c) Dusk crown ring: Amount of sorcery spells +50%, maximum HP -
    50%. Only apt for the most extreme of spellcasters. The main
    objective of wearing this ring is to counteract the effects of the
    Tin Crystallization catalyst (it halves the amount of sorceries you
    get) without losing the damage benefit.
    ii.d) White seance/Darkmoon seance rings: Attunement slots +1. Use
    only if absolutely necessary for your build. For instance, if you
    require a particular spell but you don't want to invest in the Att
    ii.e) Ring of the Sun's Firstborn: Miracle power +20%. Same as
    Bellowing Dragoncrest but for miracles. Note: doesn't have effect
    of buffs either. The wiki says it increases the power of healing
    spells, but as I present in an experiment a couple of paragraphs
    below, this doesn't seem to be true.
    ii.f) Ring of the Sun Princess: Boosts synergy of miracles and
    grants additional power to specific miracles (exact percentage not
    stated anywhere). The selected miracles that get buffed are: all
    the heals, Force, Emit force and Wrath of God. So, how much exactly
    does this ring add to the power of such spells?. I leave you with a
    little experiment I made:
    Wrath of God: no ring = 429, only sun's first born = 532,
    only sun princess = 449, both = 579.
    Emit force: no ring = 344, only sun's first born = 445, only
    sun princess = 366, both = 469.
    Force: Both rings increase range, and these range bonuses
    Heal: no ring = 678, only sun's first born = 678, only sun
    princess = 734, both = 734. Sun's first born didn't add
    healing power.
    Replenishment: no ring = 10HP/sec, 600HP total; only sun's
    first born = same as before; only sun princess = 12HP/sec,
    720HP total; both = same as with only sun princess. Again
    Sun's first born didn't boost healing.
    COMPLE.B)Special clothing: There are very few pieces of clothing that speak for
    themselves once you take out the suiting properties (weight, poise,
    i)	Family masks: already reviewed in the WILDCARDS thread.
    ii)	Crown of Dusk: Boosts spell power by 20%, reduces magic defense by
    iii)	Crown of the Dark sun: Boosts spell power by 10%.
    iv)	Armor of Thorns: The simple action of bumping into an enemy creates
    damage. The damage output is pretty trivial, but it still can
    stagger a 0 poise adversary (pure caster mages). The defense and
    poise it offers makes for a good deal when choosing gear.
    COMPLE.C)Shields: What would a knight be without his shield?. Shields are an
    important part of the game too, they are not indispensable however. Aside
    from their defensive properties, a lot of shields have special attributes
    that make them desirable even if you don't actively use them. They're
    also the best way to get a parry without much compromise if you fail.
    i)	Target shield/Buckler: They are intended for builds aimed at
    landing criticals. Their unique parrying animations, combined with
    slight blocking capabilities make them ideal for fishing ripostes.
    ii)	Heater shield: It offers amazing value for being so small and
    light. Just 2 pounds heavy, with 68 stability, complete physical
    resistance and good fire resistance.
    iii)	Tower Kite/Caduceus Kite shield: Practically same as the previous.
    It has better stability (72) but weights 1 pound more.
    iv)	Sunlight shield: Has 5% more resistance to fire than the above, but
    also weights 1 pound more taking it to 4.
    v)	Black Knight shield: Offers complete physical resistance and an
    amazing 95% fire resistance. It also has good stability (74) but
    weighs 6 pounds.
    vi)	Crest shield: Grants full physical and high magic resistance.
    Weighs 3 pounds.
    vii)	Dragon crest shield: Very similar to Black Knight's, but with 5%
    less fire resistance and only 66 stability. It also weighs half (3
    pounds) making it a very good option (maybe even better than Black
    viii)	Grass crest shield: Probably the most prevalent shield in PVP. The
    special ability to speed up stamina regeneration makes this
    compatible with any build imaginable. Its blocking properties
    although subpar, are still competent. This is probably THE shield
    you should go for, unless you have other priorities.
    ix)	Status resistance shields: The Spider shield and the bloodshield
    are more or less along the lines of the Kite shields. They offer
    additional toxin/poison (spider) and bleed (bloodshield)
    resistance, but at the expense of having slightly worse numbers.
    x)	Sanctus: Restores 2 HP over 2 seconds. In my opinion it should only
    be used to counter (slightly) the effects of Power Within.
    Alternatively it can be used along Replenishment for a very little
    boost in progressive healing (see the last part of the Rings
    xi)	Eagle shield: it's so light (6 pounds) that it should count as a
    medium shield. Nearly complete physical, good lighting resistance
    and an amazing stability (84) make a good deal when choosing a
    xii)	Havel's Greatshield: Don't use this at home kids. More than a
    shield it's a whole damn fortress, with uber resistance percentages
    (100/90/80/80), 84 stability, and an additional special ability
    that grants extra poise (Stone skin). It's the heaviest shield in
    the game however and has a whopping 50 Str requirement. If you can
    put up with this, then you will find out it is possible to fall in
    love with an equipment piece. It's one of the best counters against
    dark sorceries (including pursuers). This is to date the single
    best reason to take the Str stat as far as 50.
    xiii)	Artorias' Greatshields: The Greatshield of Artorias and Cleansing
    Greatshield respectively. Greatshield of Artorias offers
    100/50/80/40 (270 total) resistances, 88 stability, blocks most
    status effect attacks and weighs 16 pounds. Cleansing Greatshield
    has 80/80/80/70 (310 total) resistances, 77 stability and weighs
    14.5 pounds. Best choice depends of personal preference.
    xiv)	Giant's shield: A perfectly reasonable choice if you ask me. It may
    be heavy (18 pounds) but grants a nice resistance disposition in
    compensation (100/60/75/75), and an 81 stability bonus.
    COMPLE.D)Casting items: Each kind of spell requires a specific casting item in
    order to take effect, this you probably already know, what you may not
    know is what catalyst/talisman is better for your soul level.
    i)	Catalysts:
    i.a) Ooacile ivory catalyst: At 22 Int and below, it is the best
    catalyst. Between 23-26 it gets overwhelmed by Manus', but still
    ranks as the best catalyst without penalty. At 27 and above it
    becomes irrelevant.
    i.b) Sorcerer's/Beatrice's/Izalith catalysts: At 27-40 Int they are
    the best catalysts without penalty (still outclassed by Manus' and
    Tin Crystallization). Above 40 they are irrelevant.
    i.c) Logan's catalyst: At 41 Int and above, it becomes the single
    most powerful catalyst without penalty (outclassed by Manus' and
    Tin Crystallization).
    i.d) Manus' catalyst: From 23-31 it becomes the most powerful
    catalyst at the cost of halving your amount of sorceries. At 32 and
    above, it gets owned by Tin Crystallization. However, Manus' is
    still better at Dark sorceries if you have a high Str stat. This
    catalyst is also the only one competent at close quarters combat.
    i.e) Tin Crystallization catalyst: At 32 and above it becomes the
    most powerful catalyst in the whole game (except for Dark
    sorceries, see above). It also halves your sorceries.
    i.f) Tin Darkmoon catalyst: The only one that scales with Fth
    instead of Int. It can't compete with Int based catalysts, however
    it is the most effective way for Fth builds to access sorceries.
    ii)	Talismans:
    ii.a) Thorolund talisman: At 26 Fth and below it's the best
    talisman. Becomes outclassed after that.
    ii.b) Canvas talisman: Best talisman from 27 to 39 Fth. It still
    manages to outclass Ivory/Sunlight until 42 Fth.
    ii.c) Ivory/Sunlight talismans: Some players may struggle to raise
    their covenant rank to get the Darkmoon talisman (see below in
    COVENANTS), in these cases Ivory/Sunlight talismans become the best
    option at Fth 43 and above.
    ii.d) Darkmoon talisman: At 40 Fth and above it becomes the best
    talisman in the game. However it may be difficult or nigh
    impossible to get for some players.
    ii.e) Velka's talisman: The only talisman that scales with Int
    instead of Fth. It can't compete with Fth based talismans, however
    it is the most effective way for Int builds to access miracles.
    COMPLE.E)Consumables: A very important part of warfare lies in preparation, and
    choosing the best consumables for your build is essential for this end.
    Note: The items most recommended for hotlinking will be signaled with an
    i)	Healing items: Some of your duels may be honorable and there will
    be an unspoken code of not healing midfight. For all the other
    ones, you better be prepared.
    i.a) Estus flasks*: Do I need to point out the importance of this
    i.b) Humanities/twin humanities/Fire Keeper soul*: Pop one of these
    and you will fully replenish your health. Better suited for
    situations in which you can't use your estus flask (phantom form,
    ran out).
    i.c) Mosses: It's convenient to have them in your inventory for a
    given emergency. However, few are the duels in which you'll
    actually need them.
    ii)	Attacking/nerfing items: Actively thrown items that either produce
    direct damage or a status on the enemy.
    ii.a) Dragon stones*: Explained latter with more detail, look in
    the COVENANTS thread.
    ii.b) Firebombs: Though not that amazing as weapons, they may be
    effective for killing low health opponents.
    ii.c) Poison throwing knives: They can poison opponents with few
    shots. A good complement if you're into it.
    ii.d) Lloyd's talisman*: Great for using against estus choking
    hosts. A great companion when you're an invader.
    ii.e) Dung pies: Causes toxin buildup. Watch out, as it will toxin
    you too.
    iii)	Defensive/buffing items: Unlike the above, they are not actively
    used to produce damage. Nevertheless, they can give you the edge
    during battle.
    iii.a) Repair powder*: If you're using a weapon with special
    attacks, it is likely the durability will be lowered quickly. Of
    course, the weapon can break during battle all of a sudden, hence
    the importance of this item.
    iii.b) Green blossom*: A must have for melee fighters. It grants
    better stamina usage and stacks up with other items (Grass crest
    shield, mask of the child).
    iii.c) Weapon buffs*: Some characters may have enchantable weapons
    but without the ability to actually buff them (sorceries,
    miracles). In these cases charcoal pine resin, rotten pine resin
    and golden pine resin, offer a decent alternative. Charcoal pine
    resin adds +80 fire damage and it's easy to get. Rotten pine resin
    gets you poison buildup, and it's also easy to get. Golden pine
    resin adds +150 lighting damage, but unlike the previous is a bitch
    to gather since you'll need to farm it from the mushroom parents.
    iii.d) Silver pendant: It nullifies the effect of some dark spells.
    Recommended only in case you're facing heavy dark magic opposition.
    It creates a Force like explosion around you that dispels dark
    sorceries for roughly one second, the best use for this would be
    during Dark Bead spamming. Note: It's useless against pursuers.
    Spells that rely on the use of a catalyst and the Int stat (Fth can be used
    under specific circumstances). They excel at offensive capabilities. Note: I
    won't include sorceries that have little use in PVP, if you want to know more
    search the Wiki.
    i)	Soul Arrows (soul arrow, heavy soul arrow, great soul arrow, great
    heavy soul arrow): Although I consider soul arrows to be outclassed
    by Dark sorceries now a days, they can still be of some assistance.
    As soul arrows grow in power they also grow in casting time, making
    this casting/damage relationship the main focus when choosing one
    of them. I advise you take the fastest ones, they may not do a lot
    of damage, but for damage output you already have soul spears. As
    such, in my opinion the role of these sorceries in PVP is as fast
    casting chipping damage spells, instead of the backbone of your
    damage output.
    ii)	Soul Spears (soul spear, crystal soul spear): Regular soul spear
    you should only choose in case you don't have access to the crystal
    one, in every other case, take the latter. Crystal soul spear is
    one of your most damaging spells, it has a fast cast time for its
    power, and is capable of draining a full 40 Vit HP bar with the
    right stats. A must have for magicians capable of using it.
    iii)	Dark orb: One of the recent entries to sorceries. Very similar to
    soul arrow and with comparable damage too, not much to say about it
    except it can be more damaging with Manus' catalyst and high Str.
    That means it's more devastating at lower soul levels if you have
    such requirements.
    iv)	Dark bead: One of the best spells in the game. It works similar to
    a shotgun, at close range it deals heavy damage, at long range it
    has low damage but covers a lot of ground as it spreads out. It has
    the shortest casting time, and contrary to soul spears it doesn't
    require a lot of Int to use. A real beast of a spell and one that
    shouldn't be missed in your attunement slots.
    i)	Magic weapons (magic weapon, great magic weapon, crystal magic
    weapon): These spells offer an amazing edge at different soul
    levels. At the bottom we have Magic weapon, a spell that buffs your
    main weapon with fixed magic damage dependent on the next formula:
    catalyst mgc adjust * 0.8. That means that at minimum Int
    requirements to use Ooacile ivory catalyst, it adds +144 mgc
    damage; similar to having a regenerating Golden pine resin buff.
    Great magic weapon adds: catalyst mgc adjust * 1.1. At minimum Int
    requirements (15) it adds +198 mgc dmg with Ooacile ivory catalyst.
    And last, Crystal magic weapon adds: mgc adjust * 1.4. At minimum
    Int and with the best catalyst at the time (Manus') it will get you
    an additional +275 mgc dmg; with best non penalized catalyst (still
    Ooacile ivory) it adds +252 mgc dmg. Taken to top Int (50) and with
    the best catalyst possible (Tin Crystallization), it will add +410
    mgc dmg (a very close match to Darkmoon weapon). Note: Though Tin
    Crystallization will limit Crystal magic weapon to 1 use, you can
    switch to an additional non penalized catalyst (Logan's, Izalith,
    etc) after the first cast, this will grant you an additional use of
    the spell. Lingering Dragoncrest ring will prolong the time you
    have the buff active on your weapon.
    ii)	Concealing spells (Hidden body, Chameleon, Hidden sword): If you're
    like most players and all you want is to deal with your opponent as
    fast and effectively as you can, then these sorceries aren't for
    you. If on the other hand you want to have a good time messing with
    your opponents mind and goofing around, then you will find good
    assistance with these sorceries. Hidden body makes you harder to
    detect, making you transparent similar to the effect of ring of
    fog. The only PVP application for this spell is to nullify tracking
    sorceries (see below), as they won't fire even if you're standing
    next to the caster. Chameleon is a very fun spell to use, it will
    turn you into an object characteristic of the area you're in. Great
    to ambush unsuspecting enemies, but remember they're not going to
    fall for it twice. Hidden sword is basically a weapon buff but
    instead of adding damage, it makes your weapon invisible. What's
    the use of that you ask? Well, as a PVP player you'll pretty much
    react to the kind of weapon your opponent is wielding. From the
    first time you gaze at your enemy and see his sword, you're already
    plotting the best ways to take him down; figuring out in your mind
    the advantages and flaws of such weapon. Making it invisible will
    give you the edge of being more unpredictable, it will also make
    you harder to parry and awkward to evade as your opponent won't
    exactly know the best moment to make the button input. That said,
    it's more for challenge than it is for effectiveness. In this video
    you can see a guy using hidden weapon as a main buff:
    i)	Soulmasses (Homing Soulmass, Homing Crystal Soulmass): Soulmasses
    are magic orbs that surround you and target the enemy if he gets
    close enough. The number of orbs summoned depends on your Int stat:
    18=2, 19=3, 25=4, 31=5. Your aim at using soulmasses is to get at
    least 4 orbs in order for the damage to be worth it. This is why I
    believe regular Homing soulmass to be irrelevant, since the 25 Int
    required to summon 4 orbs will already grant you the far superior
    Homing Crystal soulmass.
    ii)	Pursuers: Soulmasses on steroids!!. Many people believe them to be
    overpowered, and with good reason. The tracking they have is
    insane, and the damage is similar to Crystal soulmass. It is also
    used for cheap tactics (hence the bad reputation), like spamming
    projectile sorceries or fishing backstabs while you desperately try
    to run away from the orbs. Overall an amazing spell, it will
    already grant you 5 orbs once you unlock it, and it's immune to the
    dispelling of the Silver pendant (see COMPLEMENTS above).
    i)	Dark fog: The sorcery equivalent of Poison mist, not much to say
    about this.
    ii)	White Dragon breath: The last sorcery you'll ever acquire, 50 Int
    needed. I will shoot a straight beam of crystal light directly into
    the ground, capable of hitting multiple enemies at once. It has a
    fairly fast casting time, and it can be quite a deterrent under the
    right hands. Watch this guy use the spell in PVP sessions:
    Magic builds will just pump Int to the top and get all the sorceries
    eventually. But what if I don't want to raise Int all the way to the top?, what
    if I just want the best value for the less investment?. Depending on how much
    repertoire of sorceries you want, there are fixed breakpoints of Int at which
    you'll get the best sorceries without investing unnecessary soul levels.
    Int 12: the minimum you should invest if you're interested in sorceries. It
    grants the use of the Ooacile ivory catalyst and its fixed Magic adjustment. It
    also allows the use of the next spells: Soul arrow, heavy soul arrow and Magic
    Int 16: Allows use of Great magic weapon, Dark orb, dark bead and the next
    additional spells: All concealing spells, great soul arrow, great heavy soul
    Int 25: Allows use of Crystal magic weapon, Homing crystal soulmass (4 orbs)
    and Dark Fog.
    Int 32: Allows use of Tin Crystallization catalyst, Pursuers and Homing crystal
    soulmass (5 orbs).
    Int 36: Allows use of Soul Spear.
    Int 44: It's essentially a Magic build, but among accomplished magic builds
    it's the minimum amount of Int you can invest. It grants the use of Crystal
    soul spear.
    Spells that rely on the use of a talisman and the Fth stat (Int can be used
    under specific circumstances). They excel at defensive capabilities. Note: Same
    as sorceries, I won't include the ones less fit for PVP. Check those at the
    i)	Lighting Spears (Lighting spear, Great lighting spear, Sunlight
    spear): Lighting spears with the exception of the Sunlight version
    are not as powerful as their sorcery counterparts, they provide
    however the most competent projectile spells for miracle users.
    They also have a lower entry barrier than the soul spears (Lighting
    spear 20 Fth vs Soul spear 36 Int; Great Lighting spear 30 Fth vs
    Crystal Soul spear 44 Int). Lighting spear and Great lighting spear
    are effective ranged weapons that deal lighting damage (duh!), they
    have a slightly unnecessary casting time in my eyes and null
    tracking capabilities (contrary to Soul arrows and spears that at
    least have a slight tracking motion). Apart from these minor
    defects, they are highly recommended if you feel they'll make a
    good complement to your build. Sunlight spear on the other hand
    distinguishes itself from the pack by having much more damage,
    occupying 2 slots and a more prolonged casting time. The time it
    takes to cast the spell is quite awkward, making it very tactical
    in its execution since spamming the damn thing will make it an easy
    target to evade. It is most recommended in tight spaces and against
    slow rolling opponents, using it without lock on is also a good
    option if you have the skill necessary. The biggest drawback for
    Sunlight spear is the fact that you have to remain tied to the
    Warriors of Sunlight, which means sacrificing Darkmoon weapon and
    other goodies provided by the Darkmoon blade covenant. Few Fth
    builds will be willing to make this exchange (especially with the
    required 2 slots), as the Darkmoon buff is much more effective in
    PVP than the Sunlight spear. I personally only recommend it for
    pure casters, all other builds should be fine with the lower
    Lighting spears.
    ii)	Emit force: Probably more suited to keep enemies at bay than to
    make damage. It is slow casting and easily avoided by most players.
    The force ball produced will explode upon impact making an AoE
    attack that allows for interesting applications. For once it is
    best suited to be used without lock on, and you can even drop it on
    your feet to stop charging enemies (similar to the use of Fire
    balls, see WILDCARDS thread above). Overall it's a competent spell
    under the right hands.
    i)	Forces (Force, Wrath of God): Force is a very fast casting AoE
    explosion send from within the casters body, it covers a 360? range
    and has no damage output. You get a lot of casts (20), making it
    suitable to be spammed and stopping your enemy's charge. When it
    connects it has 2 outcomes: a knockback which gives you time to
    rethink your strategy/heal or to apply more damaging spells with
    less risk (Fire tempest, Gravelord swords, etc); or they will get
    staggered, allowing for additional attacks with your weapon or even
    backstabs. It is ideal for fast opponents that just like to dance
    around you spamming the rolling action. It has the added benefit of
    reflecting sorceries if you time it right, making a viable option
    against projectile spammers. Wrath of God on the other hand, is
    probably the best offensive miracle in the game. It has all the
    characteristics of Force but in addition it makes generous damage,
    and has more range. It only has 3 casts though, so you better use
    them wisely.
    ii)	Gravelord swords (Gravelord sword dance, Gravelord greatsword
    dance): Fth players expecting these to be the miracle equivalent of
    Firestorm will be sorely disappointed. Just like its pyromancy
    equivalents they are slow casting and with a wide area of effect,
    but unlike them they sport lesser damage and there is just
    something off with the way the gravelord swords spawn. For once
    they seem to be too far apart from each other, and on top that they
    give the impression of being too random for their own sake (I've
    experienced occasions in which the swords just spawned to my right,
    with my left side being completely uncovered). All this makes the
    spell unreliable and easy to escape from. They are still viable
    options if you lack the better alternatives, and since they have a
    0 Fth requirement they are apt for the lowest soul levels.
    iii)	Vow of silence: DkS version of anti-magic field. It will stop spell
    casting in a specific area, including your own. It is obviously
    designed for melee fighters trying to gain advantage during a fight
    with a heavy casting opponent. It's a good counter against players
    that enjoy spamming any given spell (Dark bead, Wrath of God, etc),
    but be aware that it only lasts 25sec.
    iv)	Tranquil walk of peace: God, I really hate this miracle. Though
    it's pretty good in its own rights, the only application it has is
    for using cheap tactics. Casting this miracle to stop your enemy's
    movement and then spam sorceries/Wrath of God, or fish for
    backstabs is the usual tendency among users of this spell. The only
    justified use I have for it is when fighting gank squads, in which
    fair play has already gone down the toilet. Note: The Stone
    Greatsword is capable of casting this spell if you hit the R2
    button when 2 handing it.
    i)	Barriers (Magic barrier, Great magic barrier): Probably the best
    character buffs in the game. Magic barrier will block around 70%
    magic damage and Great magic barrier will block 90%. It's an
    amazing feat if you take into account that the best weapon buffs
    deal magic damage, on top of the added benefits against spell
    casters. Highly recommended.
    ii)	Miracle weapons (Sunlight weapon, Darkmoon weapon): Darkmoon weapon
    is the best weapon buff in the game, at least in terms of raw
    damage. The formula is as follows: Mgc adjust * 2.1 (at max
    covenant rank, see below in COVENANTS). That means a 50 Fth
    character with Darkmoon talisman would add nearly 500 points worth
    of magic damage to any enchantable weapon. Its only downside is the
    fact that it just allows 1 cast, not only that, but you will only
    get 1 copy of the miracle regardless of how many times you complete
    the game. It also demands you to be tied to the Darkmoon Blade
    covenant. Sunlight weapon is a less powerful version that adds
    lighting damage according to the next formula: Mgc adjust * 1.8. It
    works well as a backup in case you wasted your Darkmoon weapon
    cast, or in case you don't want to be part of the Darkmoon blades.
    A good indication for the use of Sunlight weapon is in case you
    desire the Sunlight spear miracle too (see above). Sunlight weapon
    can also be stacked during multiple playthroughs, giving you
    additional casts depending on your attunement slots and the amount
    of times you've completed the game.
    iii)	Karmic justice: The sad thing is this could've been a great buff,
    but it is too flawed to be recommended as a serious spell. When
    casted, it gives you a buff that will make an explosion similar to
    Wrath of God if you receive too much consecutive damage. So far so
    good, but it just lasts for 1 minute and works only against some
    kinds of damage. This makes it an unreliable spell, since the
    exposure you need to get the explosion going is very high risk, and
    it's very likely you'll die before the miracle kicks in. It may
    save you occasionally from certain death by stunlock, but these
    instances will be so far in between that it's not worth the effort
    (especially when you have better buffs in your repertoire). As it
    stands I can't recommend it as a competitive spell, but more of a
    curiosity. The next video shows a guy using Karmic justice
    exclusively on invasions, as you can see it's a pretty suicidal
    tactic that works well because at the lower soul level the
    opponents have little health and die after 1 cast:
    i)	Heal: Healing spells have the bad habit of taking too long to cast.
    That means that if you're going to risk using it you at least want
    it to be worth it. This heal is the most unfit for PVP, it's only
    advised in case you manage to retreat to a safe point and heal
    multiple times (1 cast will not heal you completely). In any other
    case the punish damage administered by your opponent will far
    outclass the amount of HP recovered.
    ii)	Great Heal Excerpt: Decent heal for low levels. It has the same
    power as the Great Heal but only grants 1 cast. Advised for PVP
    unless you have Great Heal. You'll still have to retreat in order
    to use it, but at least 1 successful cast should be enough to heal
    you completely in most cases (50 Fth + Darkmoon talisman will heal
    1800 HP).
    iii)	Great Heal: The best healing spell you could achieve. Same as
    before but it grants 3 casts.
    iv)	Soothing Sunlight: A healing spell that has little place in PVP. It
    heals a little less than Great heal, it demands you to have 48 Fth
    to use it, you must be tied to the Princess Guard covenant, and it
    takes 2 of your attunement slots on top of it all. The only benefit
    is the fact that it heals yourself and all allies. This makes
    things complicated, since a PVP match based on fair play rules is 1
    on 1 most of the time. That means that if you're willing to make
    all this sacrifices to get the miracle then you probably intend to
    use it as part of a gank squad (you bastard!!). The only fair use I
    have for this miracle is for the odd team match in Battle of
    v)	Replenishment: More than an actual heal, replenishment is more of
    an investment. Once casted it heals 10HP/sec for 1 minute, that
    means that overtime it heals 600HP (1/3 of your health for most
    players). Imagine a deadlier version of the toxin status but
    inversed as a healing effect and you'll get the idea. We all know
    it is easier to cast buffs at the start of a match, whether because
    your opponent lets you or because he's distracted. And while
    casting a regular heal in the middle of a fight is very risky, you
    can safely (at least most of the time) cast replenishment before
    the fight and heal progressively just by evading attacks. It's
    certainly a buff that should get your attention and priority. Note:
    Stacked with ring of the sun Princess and Sanctus, it will heal
    780HP over those same 60 seconds.
    Depending on how much repertoire of miracles you want, there are fixed
    breakpoints of Fth at which you'll get the most benefits without investing
    unnecessary soul levels.
    Fth 14: the lowest entry barrier for the miracle aficionado. It grants: Heal,
    Great Heal Excerpt, Force, Magic barrier, Gravelord swords.
    Fth 18: Adds Tranquil Walk of peace, Replenishment and Emit force to the mix.
    Fth 20: You get Lighting spear. As a small bonus you may also use Karmic
    Fth 24: Adds Great magic barrier and great heal.
    Fth 28: Grants the one and only Wrath of God, and signals the point to change
    from Thorolund to Canvas talisman. Most players not interested in Fth builds
    should probably stop here.
    Fth 30: Adds the rest of the goodies: Both Miracle weapon buffs, Vow of silence
    and great lighting spear.
    There are many covenants in the game, but for PVP purposes few of them are
    worth raising the rank, and even less of them are tempting enough to stay in.
    These are general indications as to what covenants to take, nurture and
    eventually maintain.
    COVNAN.A)Way of White: Dump it, it's the most anti PVP covenant there is as it
    actually minimizes invasions.
    COVNAN.B)Princess Guard: Enter, get the Ring of the Sun Princess (see above)
    and get the hell out. Bountiful/soothing sunlight are co-op mechanics, not
    very useful in one on one PVP (and you're no ganker, are you?).
    COVNAN.C)Darkmoon Blade: Essential for Faith builds with heavy melee fighting,
    if you enter in this category you should raise it to max level and stay
    there for good. Raising it can be quite challenging if you're new into
    this PVP thing. Since it requires souvenirs of reprisal for its leveling,
    you actually need to win some duels as a darkmoon blade before you manage
    to get the goodies. This is why some players may opt for the less
    powerful, but easier to get Sunlight weapon miracle. It gives 4 precious
    i)	Blue Eye Orb: Active invasion of players, and you don't have to be
    alive to use it.
    ii)	Darkmoon Blade Covenant ring: If you don't want to lose your time
    waiting to get into somebody else's game, you can wear this ring,
    carry on with whatever you're doing and you will be summoned to
    another player's Dark Anor Londo.
    iii)	Darkmoon Talisman: Best Talisman for High Fth values, and basic for
    any Faith build.
    iv)	Darkmoon weapon (See above): I already said everything about this
    amazing buff.
    COVNAN.D)Chaos servant: My advice is to enter, receive Chaos Great Fireball and
    dump it. If you really want to try Chaos Firestorm then raise it to rank
    2, take the shortcut to lost Izalith while you're at it and leave.
    COVNAN.E)Forest Hunters: It is a viable covenant to stay in, as there is a lot
    of action in the forest. It has a very, very amazing plus, but you'll have
    to betray them in order to get it.
    i)	The Darkwood Grain Ring (see above in the COMPLEMENTS section): is
    a one of a kind ring that is dropped by a Ninja NPC that always
    stays next to Shiva of the East. My advice is to kill him in
    Blightown as they will have less backup, he will be behind the
    plank Shiva is leaned against. Remember to buy all the stuff you
    want from Shiva before doing this.
    ii)	Murakumo (see above in the ARMED TO THE TEETH section): An added
    bonus for facing Shiva and his body guard, a one of a kind sword
    that ranks among the best greatswords available. Afterwards absolve
    your sins with Oswald and return to the covenant if you like.
    iii)	Cat ring: Similar to Darkmoon Blade covenant ring, you just have to
    use it and Alvina will summon you if there's a trespasser... and
    there are always trespassers. You can wear the ring while actively
    seeking invasions with Cracked red eye orbs to maximize
    iv)	Fog ring: (see above in the COMPLEMENTS thread).
    COVNAN.F)Warrior of Sunlight (Sunbros): Directed at Faith/caster builds too. It
    allows the use of 3 miracles, if you're fine with the first two you can
    raise the rank to 1 and leave. If you fancy the third though, you better
    get comfortable since you'll be spending much time with these guys.
    i)	Lighting spear (see above in MIRACLES)
    ii)	Great lighting spear (see above in MIRACLES): requires rank 1.
    iii)	Sunlight spear (see above in MIRACLES): requires rank 1 and the
    soul of Gwyn.
    COVNAN.G)Gravelord Servant: Active PVP has some productive points, but a long
    term relationship with this covenant is very reliant on your tastes. If you're
    in for the goodies just raise to level 2 and cash out.
    i)	Eye of Death: The unique PVP matching for gravelord servants, it is
    very convoluted and I'm not going to talk much about it. See the
    wiki if you want more info.
    ii)	Gravelord sword dance (see above in MIRACLES)
    iii)	Gravelord greatsword dance (see above in MIRACLES)
    iv)	Gravelord sword (see above in ARMED TO THE TEETH): not an amazing
    damage, but still one of the only weapons capable of dealing toxin
    (see specific build later).
    COVNAN.H)Path of the Dragon: This one may have a lot of appeal to many players,
    and some builds may benefit from its treasures (see below). Remaining on
    the covenant after you received the gifts will depend on some points
    given below.
    i)	Dragon head stone: turns your head into Dragon's, and grants you
    the ability to breathe fire. Not useful in serious PVP.
    ii)	Dragon torso stone: turns your whole body into a Dragon's, and
    grants you an AoE roaring attack. This attack staggers the enemy
    (even if high poised) and raises your attack power at the same time
    for a few seconds. The buff damage increases with covenant rank,
    which is one of the appeals of staying on such affiliation (+1=27%,
    +2=30%, +3=35%). The roar burns a huge amount of stamina though,
    and a full 192 stamina bar will only resist 2 consecutive roars.
    The low resistance and 0 poise may be a drawback to, and players
    will have to rely on the generous spamming of the roar in order to
    be more highly competitive.
    iii)	Dragon Eye: Covenant members leave a sign on the ground similar to
    the red soapstone's, it is an arranged invasion as you must be
    summoned by the opponent. This last handicap may detriment some
    players from staying for good, as they may not see as much action
    as other invaders. If it doesn't please you, you can raise rank to
    2, gain the dragon torso and leave.
    COVNAN.I)Dark Wraiths: The invading covenant by excellence, not only does it
    provide its members with highly active PVP, but primary users of other
    less active covenants may join transiently to buy Cracked Red Eye orbs
    and invade themselves. Dark Wraiths have the advantage of gaining
    Humanity if they beat their opponent, and as we've seen so far, the Hum
    stat has many offensive and defensive capabilities.
    i)	Cracked Red Eye Orbs: Consumable items with no covenant
    specificity. It's a feature aimed at foreign covenant members who
    like Dark wraith invasions but don't want to leave their respective
    ii)	Red Eye Orb: Permanent item for exclusive use of Dark Wraiths. This
    makes it a permanent guild of high value for PVP seekers.
    iii)	Dark Wraith set and sword: Nothing extraordinary, but it definitely
    looks badass. In any case it doesn't hurt having it on the locker.
    If this is the only thing you like from the dark wraiths, raise
    rank to 2 and leave the ship.
    iv)	Dark hand: Looks awesome but it has low value for PVP. The Humanity
    snatching ability is slow and doesn't have much point as the common
    PVP player knows it is best to finish off the opponent if you see
    an opening instead of going for this attack. Normal fist attack is
    underwhelming and the shield ability is mediocre at best. So, no
    real incentive in this one.
    Note: this is an approximation of how most builds work, that is not the same as
    saying they are the only builds that exist. General stats are an approximation
    and you can change any of them if it suits you well. We won?t give any specific
    equipment suggestions, that is something entirely dependent on your tastes.
    Names given below (Mage Knight, Barbarian, etc) are a pure approximation of how
    the embodiment of such build could be viewed, they are not actual titles in the
    game. Always remember to use a stat planer, you can search for one in the
    Wikis. Remember that all of the builds presented below still need further
    tailoring for your weapon tastes, estimated soul levels given will probably be
    higher once your character is done.
    This is the most prevalent build you will find in PVP, it is well rounded and
    gives a little bit of all worlds. It is understandable for these builds to be
    so popular, with DkS being a game with so much variety and yet so few
    restrictions, most players will usually try to cover as many pitfalls as they
    can. The heavy focus on melee fighting coupled with high investment in ethereal
    stats, makes these builds the ones most benefited by Holy, Occult, Enchanted,
    Magic refinement. Since this is such a mixed bag, there are many subdivisions
    you can make for this build:
    i)	Primary physical: The most prevalent incarnation of this variation is
    having a main physical stat with a +15 weapon, a weapon buff dependent
    on a secondary ethereal stat (crystal magic weapon, sunlight weapon,
    darkmoon weapon), and 1 or 2 backup spells dependent on the same
    secondary ethereal stat. The undisputed champions of damage per second
    output, they are lethal at close quarters and they also have backup
    spells if things don't go as planned. The only letdown is that such
    power is finite, buffs will end up over some seconds and recasting it
    (if you have another cast) may prove fatal if you're not careful. The
    Dex versions of this build have the added bonus of casting faster,
    becoming THE Magic/Faith builds to go for. They even surpass their
    pure caster/ethereal oriented equivalents in some aspects(Watch the
    APENDIX for more info).
    Physical stat: Choose either Str or Dex and take it to
    Average or Maximum, leave the other one on minimum.
    Ethereal stat: Choose either Int or Fth and take it to
    Average, leave the other one on minimum.
    Constitutional stat: Get Vit and End to Average, Att to a max
    of 3 slots.
    i.a) Mage Knight (Melee Str oriented with magic support):
           i.a.1) Low level: Pyromancer lvl 88. Vit 40, Att 10, End 30, Str 35, Dex
    	-, Int 25, Fth -.
           i.a.2) Mid level: Pyromancer lvl 124. Vit 45, Att 12, End 40, Str 45,
    	Dex -, Int 36, Fth -.
           i.a.3) High level: Pyromancer lvl 155. Vit 50, Att 19, End 40, Str 50,
    	Dex -, Int 50, Fth -.
    i.b) Cleric Knight (Melee Str oriented with miracle support):
           i.b.1) Low level: Cleric lvl 89. Vit 40, Att 10, End 30, Str 33, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 30
           i.b.2) Mid level: Cleric lvl 122. Vit 45, Att 12, End 40, Str 40, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 40
           i.b.3) High level: Cleric lvl 154. Vit 50, Att 19, End 40, Str 50, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 50.
    i.c) Rogue Sorcerer (Melee Dex oriented with magic support):
           i.c.1) Low level: Wanderer lvl 88. Vit 40, Att 10, End 30, Str -, Dex 35,
    	Int 25, Fth -.
           i.c.2) Mid level: Wanderer lvl 124. Vit 45, Att 12, End 40, Str -, Dex
    	45, Int 35, Fth -.
           i.c.3) High level: Wanderer lvl 155. Vit 50, Att 23, End 40, Str -, Dex
    	45, Int 50, Fth -.
    i.d) Rogue Priest (Melee Dex oriented with miracle support):
           i.d.1) Low level: Knight lvl 88. Vit 40, Att 10, End 30, Str -, Dex 30,
    	Int -, Fth 30.
           i.d.2) Mid level: Knight lvl 126. Vit 45, Att 12, End 40, Str -, Dex 40,
    	Int -, Fth 40.
           i.d.3) High level: Knight lvl 157. Vit 50, Att 23, End 40, Str -, Dex 45,
    	Int -, Fth 50.
    ii)	Primary ethereal: Variation that relies a little bit more on
    spellcasting and weapon scaling dependent on ethereal stats. They may
    not have the brutal melee damage their primary physical brothers have
    (since they don't invest as much in physical scaling), but they make
    up for it with more HP, equip burden and attunement slots. They too
    have the chance of pulling weapon spell buffs, but total damage won't
    be as high as if it was pulled by the primary physical variation. To
    get things to perspective: A Paladin (see below) with minimum
    requirements for an uchigatana, and Darkmoon weapon spell buff with
    covenant at top level will make 714 damage with each strike (highly
    lethal); but a Rogue Priest (see above) under the same conditions will
    make 858 (144 more!).
    Physical stat: Both on minimum or average.
    Ethereal stat: Choose either Int or Fth and take it to
    Maximum, leave the other one at minimum. Depending on the
    stat you choose your build will end up being a "Faith build"
    or "Mage build".
    Constitutional stat: Get Vit to average, End to average or
    minimum, and Att enough to have 3 to a max of 5 slots.
    ii.a) Paladin (Miracle spellcaster with melee capabilities):
           ii.a.1) Low level: Cleric lvl 88. Vit 40, Att 16, End 30, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 45.
           ii.a.2) Mid level: Cleric lvl 120. Vit 50, Att 23, End 40, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 50.
           ii.a.3) High level: Cleric lvl 156. Vit 60, Att 34, End 55, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 50.
    ii.b) Battle Mage (Sorceror spellcaster with melee capabilities):
           ii.b.1) Low level: Sorcerer lvl 88. Vit 40, Att 16, End 30, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int 45, Fth -.
           ii.b.2) Mid level: Sorcerer lvl 120. Vit 50, Att 23, End 40, Str -, Dex
    	-, Int 50, Fth -.
           ii.b.3) High level: Sorcerer lvl 156. Vit 60, Att 34, End 55, Str -, Dex
    	-, Int 50, Fth -.
    Pure physical builds are seldom used in high level PVP, mainly because they
    lack the tremendous aid sorceries and miracles give (hence the general
    preference for their hybrid siblings). They don't have the highest damage
    output either, mainly because the uber int/fth weapon buffs outclass any stat
    scaling that str or dex may give. As substitutes for this buffs they have 2
    options: they can use the less powerful consumable weapon buffs (charcoal pine
    resin +80 fire, gold pine resin +150 lighting); or make a minimal investment
    into Int to get it to the 12-15 breakpoint to allow use of the Ooacile Ivory
    catalyst (fixed 180 mgc adjust), plus the less powerful variants of magic
    weapon (magic weapon + Ooacile catalyst = +144 mgc dmg; great magic weapon +
    Ooacile catalyst = +198 mgc dmg). They don't have a specific weapon refinement
    arm, aside from the general Normal, Crystal, Lighting, Fire, Chaos weapons that
    any other builds may achieve. They have room for a lot of HP and equip burden
    though, giving out an agile pure melee/bow fighter who can take quite a
    beating. They can also have a little bit of pyromancy here and there.  All this
    means that these builds are intended only for skilled players, and they are to
    be viewed more like a challenge than a highly competitive build.
    i)	Polar oriented: It revolves around having a "pure str" or "pure dex"
    build. It doesn't have the damage output or the versatility of mixed
    builds with their weapon buffs and spells, it's just you and your
    weapon against anything that comes along. This also means that you'll
    have a bunch of remaining soul levels to put into constitutional
    stats, so feel free to pump Vit to the top or getting enough End to
    wear high poised gear and still backflip. If you fancy you can also
    get some attunement slots for pyromancies. Overall the high HP pool
    and poise level, makes this build ideal for the most risky maneuvers
    in the game, namely Power Within and Red Tearstone Ring combo. You can
    even go with Dragonoid Body if you don't mind the low defense in favor
    of extra damage.
    Physical stat: Choose either Str or Dex and take it to
    Maximum, leave the other one at minimum/average.
    Ethereal stat: Minimum
    Constitutional stat: Vit and End to Maximum, Att not above 3
    slots. Aditionally you can leave either Vit or End in Average
    range so you can get more attunement slots.
    i.a) Barbarian (Physical pure str based):
           i.a.1) Low level: Bandit lvl 89. Vit 55, Att -, End 40, Str 30, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth -.
           i.a.2) Mid level: Bandit lvl 134. Vit 75, Att -, End 55, Str 40, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth -.
           i.a.3) High level: Bandit lvl 159. Vit 85, Att -, End 60, Str 50, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth -.
    i.b) Ranger (Physical pure dex based):
           i.b.1) Low level: Warrior/Hunter lvl 88. Vit 50, Att -, End 40, Str -,
    	Dex 30, Int -, Fth -.
           i.b.2) Mid level: Warrior/Hunter lvl 133. Vit 75, Att -, End 50, Str -,
    	Dex 40, Int -, Fth -.
           i.b.3) High level: Warrior/Hunter lvl 158. Vit 85, Att -, End 60, Str -,
    	Dex 45, Int -, Fth -.
    ii)	Even oriented: This variation revolves around evening out Str and Dex
    to their higher common denominators, also known as "Quality builds".
    It is not for the sake of maxing out the damage of a particular set of
    weapons, but for the purpose of expanding your weapon choice horizon
    and being able to have the right tool for every job (and using all of
    them effectively). 25 is the highest Dex requirement for any weapon,
    while 30 Str will allow you to two hand any weapon up to 47. Further
    increase to 36 Str will grant you the chance to wield the infamous
    Black Knight Greataxe one handed and nearly all shields (the exception
    being Havel's). The higher 40 Dex value comes from the premise that
    Dex scaling weapons are better-rounded and have higher versatility.
    This build will demand you to experiment a little bit and determine
    what weapons will benefit more from a +15/Crystal treatment plus Buff
    item (Gold Pine Resin), and which ones are better left as elemental
    weapons (lighting, fire, etc). Take also into account that there are
    weapons "ideal" for this build because of their decent scale with both
    Str/Dex (mostly greatswords, curved greatswords and ultra
    Physical stat: Both Str and Dex to Maximum.
    Ethereal stat: Minimum
    Constitutional stat: Vit or End to Maximum, leave the other
    in Average range, Att not above 3 slots. Additionally you can
    leave both Vit and End on Average, so you can get more
    attunement slots.
    ii.a) Mercenary (Physical mixed str/dex):
           ii.a.1) Warrior/Bandit lvl 90. Vit 50, Att -, End 40, Str 25, Dex 20,
    	Int -, Fth -.
           ii.a.2) Warrior/Bandit lvl 125. Vit 65, Att -, End 40, Str 30, Dex 35,
    	Int -, Fth -.
           ii.a.3) Warrior/Bandit lvl 156. Vit 75, Att -, End 50, Str 36, Dex 40,
    	Int -, Fth -.
    OBUILD.C)PURE CONSTITUTION (also called "Gouge builds" sometimes)
    This one is very similar to the ones mentioned above, and they may have a lot
    of overlapping once you start sinking points in Str/Dex for wielding purposes.
    The only difference is the sacrifice of physical stats for the benefit of
    pumping Vit and End even more. A little stat investment can be done for the
    sake of wielding a specific weapon, or gaining a low level sorcery/miracle. All
    in all, the offensive capabilities of this build rely heavily on elemental
    weapons (lighting, fire, chaos) and 1 or 2 pyromancies. This one is also
    intended for skilled players only and it would be the most broad definition of
    a Tank, it's straight forward and it doesn't have subdivisions.
    i)	Pure constitution: It's been already explained. This one can also
    benefit heavily from Power Within/Red Tearstone/Dragonoid Body combo.
    Physical stat: Both Minimum.
    Ethereal stat: Both Minimum.
    Constitutional stat: Both to Maximum, Att not above 3 slots.
    Aditionally you can leave one of the former in Average for
    the sake of having more attunement slots.
    i.a) Heavy Knight (Physical elemental with a lot of resistance):
           i.a.1) Low level: Pyromancer lvl 85. Vit 65, Att -, End 40, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth -.
           i.a.2) Mid level: Pyromancer lvl 124. Vit 89, Att -, End 55, Str -, Dex
    	-, Int -, Fth -.
           i.a.3) High level: Pyromancer lvl 155. Vit 99, Att 23, End 65, Str -,
    	Dex -, Int -, Fth -. Note: 65 End (plus a little help from rings/father
    	mask) should be enough to wield nearly anything with great speed, no
    	need to pump it more at least in my book. Sink the rest of the soul
    	levels in anything that fancies you, in this case I chose attunement
    	for the liberal use of pyromancies, but you can put those 11 remaining
    	points wherever you want.
    Pure casters revolve around attacking with as many spells as they can, giving
    them some degree of hate mail during matches because of their spamming and
    powerful offensive. They are frail however, and can die easily at the hands of
    an aggressive melee opponent, and even one-shot by a well placed backstab.
    Though they can deal good damage in melee with the aid of weapon reinforcements
    (Holy, Magic, Enchanted, elemental, etc) and buffs, they generally have little
    close quarters capabilities until they reach higher levels. This is because the
    below average HP, the low equip burden, and the short stamina bar make for a
    mediocre melee combatant at the low-mid range. If you don't like giving up
    melee fighting capabilities, check hybrid builds above. Hybrid Dex builds also
    have 1 particular advantage over pure casters, and it's the casting speed. They
    can save up a couple of precious miliseconds during the casting process, it may
    not seem like much, but against high opposition a couple of miliseconds can be
    the difference between success and failure. If this last step feels crucial for
    your build, you can sacrifice points in Att, Vit, End, and why not Int/Fth in
    favor of Dex; all for the sake of being a faster caster (see Evening out stats
    i)	Polar oriented: Similar to the Hybrid primary ethereal classes
    mentioned above, the polar oriented casters will end up as either a
    "faith build" or a "mage build". Out of all the spells, sorceries have
    the best offensive capabilities, and miracles have the best defensive
    capabilities. Hence, pure intelligence casters excel in offensive
    damage while pure faith casters excel in buffs with a slight array of
    offensive spells. Choosing one ethereal stat will give you the basis
    for your build, whether Int for sorceries or Fth for miracles. Velka's
    talisman gives pure Int casters the chance to add slight miracle
    capabilities to their char if considered necessary. While Tin Darkmoon
    Catalyst allows the same for Fth casters. Complementation with
    pyromancies is also essential.
    Physical stats: Both Minimum.
    Ethereal stats: Take one to Maximum and leave the other in
    Constitutional stats: Take Att to maximum. Leave the others
    somewhere between minimum or average, unless you go to higher
    soul levels.
    i.a) Saint (Fth pure caster):
           i.a.1) Low level: Cleric lvl 84. Vit 35, Att 34, End 25, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 30.
           i.a.2) Mid level: Cleric lvl 127. Vit 45, Att 50, End 25, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 50.
           i.a.3) High level: Cleric lvl 157. Vit 60, Att 50, End 40, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int -, Fth 50.
    i.b) Warlock (Int pure caster):
           i.b.1) Low level: Sorcerer lvl 87. Vit 35, Att 34, End 25, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int 36, Fth -.
           i.b.2) Mid level: Sorcerer lvl 127. Vit 45, Att 50, End 25, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int 50, Fth -.
           i.b.3) High level: Sorcerer lvl 157. Vit 60, Att 50, End 40, Str -, Dex
    	- , Int 50, Fth -.
    ii)	Even oriented: By raising both Int and Fth you'll get the best of both
    worlds, the only price to pay is not being able to use the most
    advanced spells and giving up either some attunement slots or HP. The
    best sorcery tools are unlocked at 44 Int (Crystal Soul spear being
    this breakpoint), while best miracles unlock at 28 Fth (Wrath of God
    being this breakpoint). That said, Velka's talisman is recommended for
    casting miracles in this scenario. If you're willing to spend a little
    more points, True great sword of Artorias may become a viable option
    (see later Weapon builds and Evening out stats).
    Physical stats: Both at minimum.
    Ethereal stats: Take one to maximum, leave the other one on
    Constitutional stats: Att to near maximum, rest on average.
    ii.a) Sage (Mix Fth/Int caster):
           ii.a.1) Cleric/Sorcerer lvl 87. Vit 30, Att 23, End 25, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int 32, Fth 28.
           ii.a.2) Cleric/Sorcerer lvl 127. Vit 40, Att 41, End 25, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int 44, Fth 28.
           ii.a.3) Cleric/Sorcerer lvl 155. Vit 50, Att 41, End 35, Str -, Dex -,
    	Int 50, Fth 30.
    Not much to say about these ones, they are small variations of the ones
    mentioned above, with the exception that they are meant to exploit certain
    terrain conditions. With this in mind, you'll have to invade in very specific
    places in order to prepare effective ambushes. Good options are the top of
    Sen's Fortress, Tomb of the Giants, Catacombs and Lost Izalith. I won't dwelve
    much longer into these builds since they don't have any prototypical pattern,
    if you're interested try invasion in different places of these levels,
    experiment with various spells, get the necessary backup from local enemies and
    have fun. Overall these builds are not intended for direct confrontation, but
    more for surprise easy wins, hence it ends up being a little bit dickish.
    Watch the link to see an example of an environmental build:
    As you may have noticed, there is a huuuuge array of weapons in the game for
    you to wield. That said, there are some that stand tall above the others
    whether because they are powerful or they have a particular skill. It is true
    that generally you shouldn't adjust your stats to a particular weapon, and
    instead adjust your choice of weapons to your particular stats; but in this
    case we can make an exception. Please note that these are builds for low soul
    levels, in which during the stat raising process you can speed up weapon
    requirements and scaling. At high soul levels however there won't be any true
    weapon oriented builds, since any of the above builds mentioned will be able to
    wield such items. Overall, the next are essentially hybrid builds with focus on
    exploiting one particular piece of equipment.
    i)	True Great sword of Artorias: Though it's slow for a great sword
    besides having some awkward R2s, this weapon can still be considered
    one of the best unique items in the game. It scales with all stats and
    has both physical and magical damage integrated. This build gives you
    the additional benefit of spells including Wrath of God, all soul
    arrows, homing soul mass, most dark sorceries, among others. It also
    grants you the use of Darkmoon weapon if you want to pump a little bit
    of damage once in a while. BKGA can be used if wielded 2 handed. HP is
    nothing extraordinary, has only 2 attunement slots and stamina is not
    optimal (can be countered with ring of favor/protection), but overall
    it is pretty effective. Note: For casting use Tin Darkmoon catalyst
    for sorceries and Canvas talisman for miracles, they give the best
    magic adjustment at these values.
    i.a) Slayer Artorias (Melee fighter with spellcasting support): Pyromancer lvl
    107. Vit 40, Att 12, End 35, Str 24, Dex 18, Int 20, Fth 30.
    ii)	Havel's Great Shield: This is by far the best shield in the whole
    game, 100% resistance to physical, 90% to magic, 80% to both fire and
    lighting. His high Str wielding cost and very heavy nature make the
    entrance barrier a little bit high. This build is essentially a
    strength build with little spell support. You can use pyromancy or you
    can get an Ooacile ivory catalyst with magic weapon (+144 mgc dmg).
    The high Str investment will allow you to use all heavy weapons in the
    game, but your main game should be the "turtle game", get a low
    requirement spear/rapier, give it lighting treatment (or get a Demon's
    spear) and poke all the way. Watch your foes health bar get chipped
    away one poke at a time, while they desperately try to get around your
    shield. Your main enemies though: Shotels, altered status and
    backstabs, neeeever get too confident. Note: PVE will be a total joke
    with this build.
    ii.a) Havel's acolyte (Heavy defensive melee fighter with minimal
    spellcasting): Pyromancer lvl 101. Vit 40, Att 12, End 40, Str 50, Dex 10, Int
    12, Fth -.
    iii)	Great shield of Artorias: Also an amazing shield, it may not have the
    damage reduction capabilities of Havel's but it's still great against
    physical/fire and it has the highest stability in the game. It plays
    very similar to the Havel's greatshield build, with the exception that
    the higher Str allows for a bigger weapon variety including 1 handing
    the Black Knight Great axe, and the slightly higher Int gets you the
    Great Magic Weapon spell (+198 mgc dmg with Ooacile catalyst). The
    lower weight of the shield allows for faster movement too. If you're
    not convinced by the shield's properties under certain circumstances,
    you can switch to equivalents like the Cleansing shield or the Giant's
    iii.a) Defender Artorias (Defensive melee fighter with minimal spellcasting):
    Pyromancer lvl 98. Vit 40, Att 12, End 40, Str 36, Dex 18, Int 15, Fth -.
    iv)	Lifehunt Scythe: (Original credit: Crimson_Reaper) This build focuses
    on the liberal use of the bleed status from this scythe, as the base
    damage of the weapon is nothing special. This weapon has the highest
    bleed buil-up, and once the status gets in the opponent will lose a
    whopping 50% HP. More important than the stats is the concomitant use
    of bleed resistance gear, as each successful hit from the scythe will
    also raise your status bar. This gear is basically the bloodshield,
    the bloodbite ring, and armor with good bleed resistance (Dingy set,
    Black sorcerer set, Shadow set, Chester's set, etc); use whatever
    combinations feel good, the shield seems the most imperative of these
    though. It is also advisable that you carry bloodred moss in case you
    feel you're getting the worst deal out of the bleed process. High Dex
    investment allows the use of other backup weapons if you feel a change
    of pace would favor you in the duel. If done properly, this build can
    take down any foe, no matter how armored he is. Other bleed inducing
    weapons can be used to complement the bleed buildup, if you feel the
    Scythe hits are difficult to connect. Of course, patience also plays
    an important role.
    iv.a) Crimson reaper (Melee status inducing fighter with minimal spellcasting):
    Pyromancer lvl 100. Vit 50, Att 12, End 40, Str 16, Dex 35, Int -, Fth -. Watch
    the link to see the Crimson reaper build in action:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=msM6W_XYgiI. For roleplaying purposes the user
    wore a full Dark Wraith set. Watch this video for KnewGaming's variation in
    which he used Dark Wraith helm, Armor of thorns chest piece, and parts of the
    crimson set: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sex-flJnAZI.
    v)	Golem Axe: (Original credit: Xskulled and Rosie) Though the Golem Axe
    in terms of raw damage output is absolutely nothing to brag about, it
    does have one particular and very useful technique. If you hit R2
    while wielding it one handed, it produces an air proyectile similar to
    the boss counterpart, it has quite some reach and is pretty fast too.
    It is heavily melee oriented, although with an attunement slot for
    pyromancy and the above mentioned R2 attack you won't have to fear
    enemies who are far away. Note: the R2 attack will consume 60
    durability, it is recommended for you to have Repair powder at hand.
    v.a) Iron Lumberjack (Melee/ranged fighter with minimal spellcasting): Bandit
    lvl 102. Vit 60, Att 10, End 40, Str 36, Dex -, Int -, Fth -. Watch the link to
    see the Iron Lumberjack in action, although at a higher level cap:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DYsQvMo2iM. For role playing purposes the users
    used a full Iron golem set with no shields.
    vi)	Grant: (Original credit: KnewGaming)The Grant is the unbuffed weapon
    with the highest damage output, if you have the stats to wield it of
    course. A Str/Fth hybrid in essence, you'll have to sacrifice some
    endurance for the sake of pumping damage at lower levels. For this
    reason, it is recommended for you to have a ring of favor and
    protection to raise the stamina bar as much as you can. The best
    attack of great hammer weapons in general is the Rolling attack which
    smashes the hammer in the ground and creates a small AoE, hence it is
    also recommended that you attain fast rolling. The cherry above the
    cake however, is Grant's special ability to create a Wrath of God's
    esque attack while holding it with both hands and hitting R2. High Fth
    allows for great miracle capacity, but you'll only have one attunement
    slot, so pick carefully. A good option would be Wrath of God, Force,
    lighting spears or Darkmoon blade in case you want to buff a backup
    weapon. Note: the R2 attack will consume 200 durability, after 2
    attacks (400 durability) the ability won't work anymore and you'll
    need to repair the hammer. It is also recommended for you to have
    Repair powder.
    vi.a) Mighty Maiden (Heavy Melee fighter with slight miracle capacity): Cleric
    lvl 105. Vit 40, Att 10, End 35, Str 34, Dex -, Int -, Fth 40. Watch the link
    to see the Mighty Maiden in action, although at a higher level cap:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WvN3qNTNK4s. For role playing purposes and
    personal preference, the user used a full Maiden set.
    vii)	Dragon Weapons: Dragon weapons usually have the advantage of having a
    special attack similar to the Grant and Golem axe mentioned above,
    however when said special attack is balanced against the requirements
    the weapon demands few of them are worth it. That said, the best
    dragon weapons after this cost/benefit ratio is applied are 2:
    Moonlight greatsword and Obsidian greatsword. Moonlight greatsword...
    well what can I say about it, a PVP favorite for some time now, the R2
    attack fires a magic blast that has amazing range and decent damage.
    Obsidian greatsword, a recent addition with the DLC, has an amazing
    AoE attack when you hit R2 while wielding it 2 handed (and it's
    enchantable). This build will allow use of these weapons, with 3
    additional attunement slots and a wide magic selection at 32 Int
    (pursuers would be a good choice). Crystal Magic Weapon is a must,
    with Tin Crystalization catalyst it will add 355 damage to whatever
    weapon you like (hemm...your obsidian greatsword +5 for a total of 835
    dmg, and further with the special attack). If you mind halving your
    sorceries you can also use Beatrice's/Izalith/Sorcerer's catalyst at
    the cost of lower damage. Note: Again, Repair Powder. Moonlight's
    attack does between 20-40 durability damage (around 10 uses),
    Obsidian's attack is 50 durability (6 uses).
    vii.a) Dragon slayer (Melee/ranged fighter with magic support): Pyromancer lvl
    104. Vit 45, Att 14, End 40, Str 20, Dex 16, Int 32, Fth -.
    i)	The all or nothing build: (Original credit: Caroso964) A suicidal
    build that revolves around having the highest damage output in the
    game even if it will cost your life. Let's get clear about this, you
    will die with the first hit you receive, and even if nothing touches
    you, you will still die in about 1 minute. You'll need the dragon
    torso stone (enter Path of the Dragon covenant, raise it to the needed
    level and leave), that will raise your attacks by 25% for a few
    seconds after you roar. Darkmoon weapon miracle is also a requisite
    (Enter Darkmoon blade covenant and raise it as high as you can), it's
    the best buff in the game (at least in raw damage output) and with 50
    Fth and max covenant rank it will add 474 mgc dmg to any weapon you
    use. Power Within (+40% dmg) is also necessary, you should use it with
    an ungraded pyromancy flame (no longer true if you have the last
    update), a sanctus shield and a Lingering Dragoncrest ring to give you
    as much time as you can. And finally, the Red Tearstone Ring which
    grants you +50% damage once your health gets to 20% or less. To put it
    into numbers: This build plus a +15 shortsword with baseline stats (a
    bad weapon choice overall) will give a huge 1506 damage output (227
    shortsword + 474 Darkmoon weapon + 175 dragon roar + 280 power within
    + 350 red tearstone) per swing... enough to one-shot most fellow
    players and it wasn't even a critical.
    i.a) Kamikaze Dragonoid (Melee fighter): Cleric lvl 70. Vit 10, Att 12, End
    40, Str -, Dex -, Int -, Fth 50. 70 is a pretty low soul level, which means
    you still have a lot of room to catter for your personal tastes. If you
    don't like the build being so extreme, you can raise the HP to decent levels
    and change one of the rings for a Hornet ring. This will allow for truly
    devastating backstabs without the fear of being one shot at the first
    mistake. Watch this video to see the build in action:
    ii)	Status inducing build: Some items in the game are particularly
    effective in inducing altered status. This build's main purpose is to
    induce poison/toxin with the objective of applying constant damage,
    and pressure on the opponent at the same time (forcing him into tight
    situations in which he may commit mistakes). Two weapons will be your
    base, Gravelord sword (toxin buildup) and the large club (poison
    builup). Although the Gravelord sword is no Murakumo, it's still
    effective as a weapon and the toxin buildup is pretty good. Large club
    on the other hand is one of the best Great hammers you will find, it
    ranks among the fastest of his class, it has almost as much raw damage
    as the Great Club, and the rolling ground pound attack is as good as
    always. Not only that, but you can give the Large club any weapon
    refinement you want and it's enchantable, quite a jewel if you ask me.
    Offensive complements to this build include consumables and spells.
    Spells that will aid you for the status buildup are toxic mist, poison
    mist and dark fog. Useful consumables on the other hand are Dung pies
    (toxin), poisoned throwing knives, poison arrows and rotten pine resin
    (all produce poison) should all be in your inventory. Rotten pine
    resin will broaden your weapon choices, as it can turn any enchantable
    weapon into a "poison weapon" for a set amount of time; you can even
    apply it into the large club and raise its poison buildup even
    further. Defensive complements are also advisable, blooming purple
    moss is recommended if you're planning to use dung pies, as well as
    high toxin resistance gear. Lloyd's talismans are recommended for
    every build, but even more so with this one. Since you're going to
    play the waiting game once the target gets a status, you'll surely
    want them not to heal after your efforts. Remember being patient and
    use a good shield to turtle up if needed. Note: remember you can get
    both the toxin and poison status into the same opponent, if you've
    already sunk one in, you can switch weapons and strategy to try induce
    the other one.
    ii.a) Toxic Crusader (Melee status inducing fighter with spell support): Vit
    50, Att 14, End 40, Str 26, Dex 13, Int 18, Fth -.
    So, what happens when I've already reached the recommended "High level" stat
    values and I still want to improve my build?. The only expected thing that
    could happen, you need to start raising the other stats to reduce weak spots in
    your build. You have a pure caster? Raise constitutional and physical stats to
    make him a good fighter; you have a tank build? Spray some ethereal stats
    around so you can get the weapon buffs you so badly needed. You want to get
    creative? How about raising that weird Resistance stat you never touched?. You
    get the idea, just look for the things you envy about other builds and
    incorporate them to your own. The evening out process can start from the mid
    level or even the low level range if you're not liking the way things are going
    so far (it's a dynamic process). I do have to mention that once you decide to
    "even out", your build will end up being a hybrid most of the time.
    There's one thing you have to be aware about, the more you raise your soul
    level, the less distinctive your build will be. Above the soul lvl 160-170,
    practically all builds are more or less hybrid. As you get around the 200 lvl
    mark, all builds will start to look like each other, they will all have lots of
    HP, great stamina, all kinds of spells, weapon buffs...and very little to tell
    them apart, besides particular player preferences. And above lvl 250-270,
    "true" builds become obsolete since anyone can have any build with a simple
    change of equipment. You want to be a barbarian? Grab your club and get into
    your heavier clothes. You prefer assasins? Switch to lightgear and Dex weapons.
    You want a heavy armored mage with a Greataxe, a backup rapier and some
    miracles to spice things up a little bit? Done. Just think that the soul level
    any starting class would need to get all their stats to the 50 breakpoint
    (minus Resistance) is 279, and you can get the idea of how generic things get
    So Melchaios, it's cool and all that you gave us advice on the bazillion ways
    we can make a build. But we came here searching for THE best build. In your
    opinion what's the best build?
    Interesting question, let's analyze that by looking at our choices:
    -	Hybrid vs non-hybrid: Hybrid all the way. A good hybrid build will have
    more or less the combined benefits of various non-hybrid builds, and at
    the same time it will minimize deficiencies. With the right stats you
    will get the best of both the physical and magic world at the same time.
    -	Strength vs Dexterity: Dex is the winner here. Once you get your Str
    build to the top you'll find out your weapon selection is quite
    underwhelming. Few exemplars of a small arrange of weapon classes scale
    handsomely with Str: Great swords, Ultra Great swords, Great axes, Great
    hammers, Hammers. The specific Str weapons of these classes are usually
    flawed in one way or another (too heavy, too slow, not enchantable, no
    stunlock, bad animations, etc), and they drag behind other non-Str
    equivalents. Such is the case of many weapons including: Man serpent
    greatsword, Demon great machete, Black Knight Greatsword, Demon's
    Greataxe, Smough's hammer, Dragon King greataxe, Dragon greatsword,
    Demon's Greathammer, among others. The only things Str builds have going
    on for themselves are: the shields (Havel's, Artorias', Giant's), Black
    Knight Greataxe, most Great hammers and some Hammers.
    Dex characters on the other hand have an amazing scaling with a wide
    arrange of weapons: All Daggers, Straight swords (Balder side sword),
    most curved swords, most katanas, Curved greatswords (Murakumo), all
    piercing swords, fist weapons (the claws), all spears, pole weapons
    (scythes), and the best bows. And if that wasn't enough, 45 Dex grants
    you the best casting time available (watch the APENDIX thread for more
    info). When you pile the benefits against the inconveniences, it is
    obvious that Dex is the best choice as a main physical stat.
    -	Faith vs Intelligence: So, which way should I go, Sorceries or
    miracles?.This is a tough one, and probably a point of controversy, but knowing
    what I know now I think Intelligence is the way to go. We've already seen
    that sorceries have the best offensive abilities, while miracles are
    known for their defensive features (there are some good exceptions of
    course). But in this game the proverb "the best defense is a good
    offense" is the reigning mantra of PVP. Though Wrath of God and the
    lighting spears are competent and damaging spells, they get owned in
    terms of variety and raw damage by sorceries. If you don't believe me try
    going into PVP with a pure miracle caster and without the help of
    pyromancies, you'll see what I mean. Pure sorcery casters on the other
    hand are very capable and lethal, since they have a much larger array of
    options to attack.
    But Darkmoon weapon is the best buff in the game, you said it yourself...
    Yeah, it is, but just in terms of raw damage. Take into account that a 50
    Fth character with the best talisman will gain 474 mgc dmg with Darkmoon
    weapon; while a 50 Int character with the best catalyst will gain 410 mgc
    dmg with Crystal magic weapon. It's hardly a crucial difference, and if
    you add the fact that you can prolong the active effect of Crystal magic
    weapon by using a Lingering Dragon Crest ring (something for which
    Miracle casters have no equivalent), then you can say that they are at
    least on par.
    Bottom line is, unless you have a thing for miracles, go with sorceries
    since they give the best benefits.
    Having reached these conclusions, we can safely assume that a Hybrid Dex/Int
    build will have the most benefits, and the best disposition of tactics to be
    competent in nearly every situation. It gives great versatility, as a simple
    change of gear can turn you from a heavy casting machine, to a deadly melee
    fighter. The resulting build would end up looking a lot like these:
    Vit 50, Att 23, End 40, Str 14, Dex 45, Int 50, Fth -. Pyromancer lvl 159. If
    you're fine with being an exclusive sorcery caster, this is what you should aim
    for. The 14 Str is for wielding the Obsidian great sword 2 handed, as it has
    one of the best AoE attacks in the game.
    Vit 45, Att 23, End 40, Str 14, Dex 45, Int 44, Fth 28. Pyromancer lvl 168. If
    you also want the best benefits from miracles, you can alternatively aim for
    these values. 28 Fth will give you Wrath of God and all the Heals/Buffs.
    Adding Crow of dusk and spell specific rings, combined with your higher casting
    capabilities will make you a lethal mage. On the other hand, combining
    gear/rings to aim for a Super suit, selecting 1 or 2 of your many Dex scaling
    weapons, and backing up with fast casting pyromancies will also make you an
    incredible melee fighter. The possibilities are nearly endless, and all are
    very effective.
    So, you're saying I should make this build?. Absolutely no!!! You wanted to
    know what the best build was, I gave you the best build I know. But building a
    character from scratch should be about creating the hero (or villain) you
    always wanted to be, it's a role playing game after all. And the fact that this
    game is more about skill than numbers, gives you the chance of using whatever
    you want and still be able to hold your own against anyone. Skill will always
    make up for thousands of souls spent on stats, and at the same time, the best
    build available will never make up for your deficiencies as a player. My main
    characters are a Fth build, and a Str/Int hybrid, hardly close to the uber
    build I mentioned before. Nonetheless I can hold my own against anyone, and
    I've defeated a lot of Dex/Int hybrids that are supposed to be better... and
    the fact is they're only better on paper. Even the underwhelming Str weapons I
    talked about before are very capable in the right hands, many people still use
    them and they win duels...hell, I've used them and I've won a lot of duels.
    That said, the only message I want you to get into your skull after reading
    this FAQ is this: Don't choose a number, choose a character. While you're in
    the character customization screen, ask yourself the most important question
    "If I had an alter ego, ?What would it be like?".
    This FAQ is designed to cover just one aspect of the game, making your
    character. If you're curious about other aspects like actual combat techniques,
    skills and general knowledge of the game, many other players have already
    covered all those aspects in ways that I can only dream of. I leave the links
    below, have fun.
    APENDX.A)Backstabs: It doesn't matter if you like or hate backstabs, you have
    to get used to the idea that they are an integral part of PVP (since Demon's
    souls actually). You can sit there and bitch about how unfair backstabs
    are, or you can learn how to do them, how to prevent them and finally how
    to counter them. And once you know everything there is to know, you can
    create your own code of honor regarding backstabs. Meanwhile you can
    check EWGF's channel for backstabbing wisdom.
    APENDX.B)Parrying: One of the best techniques an accomplished fighter will ever
    achieve. First check EWGF's general instructions about parrying.
    jblackmel also gives some advice on parrying, with practical examples:
    APENDX.C)Other advanced tactics: EWGF also explains a lot of PVP's hidden
    features that you probably never knew existed. If you manage to dominate these
    techniques you'll have a huge advantage over most opponents.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5EVdvduhI6E&feature=relmfu. This one covers
    Toggle scape, Instant Block and Buildup reset.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y48dZJ8NALU&feature=relmfu. This one covers
    Pivot cancelling casts, Frame parry, counter hits and some more.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wk7-Iy7-8A&feature=relmfu. Dead angle
    attacks for the turtles.
    APENDX.D)Pyromancy techniques: advanced pyromancy tricks courtesy of
    APENDX.E)Lore: You don't understand the story of the game??, well you're not
    the only one. Check this link for some enlightment courtesy of EpicNameBro.
    Besides his lore series, EpicNameBro has many useful Dark souls shows,
    check his channel:
    APENDX.F)Dex stat and casting time: Useful experiments on how Dex affects
    spellcasting, and just how much Dex is enough Dex for casters.
    APENDX.G)Best places to PVP: Although all places can be used for PVP, there are
    certain areas famous for their online activity.
    i)	Undead Burg (1 on 1): The area next to the first bonfire is heavy
    with PVP action. The usual matchup is 1 vs 1.
    ii)	Darkroot forrest (1-3 vs ?): The area after the door opened by the
    crest of Artorias is an infamous place to search for duels. The
    usual matchup is 2-3 hosts vs any invaders that show up. A no
    quarrel place that will test your masochistic abilities if you
    decide to take the challenge alone. It's probably the most frequent
    place you'll find Gankers.
    iii)	Anor Londo (Bright: 1-3 vs 1; Dark: 1 vs ?): In Bright Anor Londo
    things usually go better for the host as he has the chance to
    summon phantoms. The usual PVP setting is around the area of the
    rotating bridge, although any place is susceptible to invasion. If
    the PVP encounter occurs in the castle area, then the invader may
    level things up by relying on heavy help from the local monsters.
    Dark Anor Londo is a different story. Since the bosses (Ornstein
    and Smough) are already dead, the host has no chance of summoning
    phantoms. On top of it all, the number of invaders is not
    restricted and you can have continuous chain invasions on a good
    day. Don't know if it's just me, but this area seems to have been
    abandoned quite recently. I have remained on Dark Anor Londo for
    around 30-40 minutes without a single invasion, on 2 separate days.
    It's still worth a try though.
    iv)	Kiln of the first flame (1 on 1, occasionally 2-3 vs 1): A lot of
    PVP action at the entrance. The usual matchup is 1 vs 1, but
    gankers aren't rare once you stay a while.
    v)	Battle of Stoicism (1 on 1, 2 vs 2, free for all): The newest
    addition to the PVP scene. It allows for a great variety of
    matchups and on top takes away one of the most annoying PVP
    tendencies: healing items. Most action takes place in the 1 on 1
    arena. 2 vs 2 and free for all are harder to accomplish since
    getting the 4 players is a difficult task, I've just managed to get
    a couple of duels in these categories.
    vi)	Ooacile township (1 on 1): Just past the battle of stoicism you'll
    find a bonfire. This place has seen a lot of invasions now a days,
    possibly the result of a new trend because of the DLC being
    relatively new. It's worth a shot if you like the level layout.
    APENDX.H)PVP youtube channels: If you want to see advanced PVP combat check the
    next channels. You may learn a thing or two.
    Peeve Peeverson:
    APENDX.I)Walkthroughs/humor: A hilarious walkthrough made by Squiiddish.
    Thanks for sticking up with me to the end of this FAQ, I hope it has all the
    information you need to get your character going. Remember to E-mail I you have
    any tip that you think would improve this FAQ, don't worry I will give you the
    respective credit on the revisions, just state the name or alias you would like
    to appear. Also, if you still have doubts I'd be more than happy to answer them
    (in case I know the answer of course). E-mail: melchaios@hotmail.com. I'd like
    to thank all the players/authors that served as inspiration or base material
    for some sections of this FAQ including:
    -EWGF. Gave me and many other players a huge insight into ingame mechanics.
    His FAQ on Demon's Souls PVP is probably the one of the best I've ever seen,
    and certainly an inspiration for the creation of this FAQ. So far he's author
    of the next videos/concepts shown in this FAQ: Combos, weapon speed, backstab,
    parrying, advanced tactics, poise, among others.
    -knutaf0. Author of the video showing rolling speeds. Also author of many PVP
    videos, including the one showing use of hidden blade in active PVP.
    -BalderKnight. Author of the video that expanded on weapon swing speed.
    -KKobra. Author of the video showing PVP with whips.
    -PeevePeeverson. Author of many PVP videos, including the one posted on the
    bows thread showing the proper use of a bow in PVP.
    -Xskulled. Author of the video showing PVP with shields. Co-author of the Iron
    lumberjack build.
    -DarkSoulsMindEye. Author of many PVP videos, including the one showing proper
    use of the White Dragon Breath spell on PVP. He's also responsible for the
    advanced pyromancy tecniques video.
    -Sansviedotcom. Author of many PVP videos, including the one showing use of
    Karmic justice for PVP.
    -Codemanster0. Author of the video showing an enviromental build (Rooftop
    defender), with the original idea being from Swashy.
    -Crimson_Reaper. Author of the crimson reaper build.
    -KnewGaming. Author of many PVP videos including one also showing the Crimson
    Reaper build. Author of the Mighty Maiden build.
    -Rosie. Co-author of the Iron Lumberjack build.
    -Caroso964. Author of the Kamikaze Dragonoid build. He never stated the name
    of this build.
    -jblackmel. Author of PVP videos showing parrying examples.
    -EpicNameBro. Responsible for the Lore series, among others.
    -PeachPurin. Author of one of the videos showing Dex influence on casting.
    -iGBxRated. Author of one of the videos showing Dex influence on casting.
    -AM1800. Author of many PVP videos.
    -Squiiddish. Author of the Derp Souls walkthrough series.
    -Special thanks to all the authors responsible for the Wikis, we would be lost
    without them.
    Any other concept or description covered in this FAQ has been developed by
    myself, if some of them seem similar to your own it is the product of pure
    coincidence. Titles like "Battle Mage", "Barbarian", "Ranger", etc, are of
    public dominion. So don't send requests asking me to give you credit under
    these cumstances.

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