Content Type: Gaming Guides
After breaking the game for months, Elden Ring’s “Bleed” status was at the forefront of many controversies. Despite the many nerfs to bleed builds, they still pack an impressive punch, absolutely melting bosses. In this guide, we’ll discuss the best bleed build in Elden Ring 1.7.
For this build we based it off of the Samurai for a few reasons. The first is the class begins with a katana which you can level up and assign an Ashes of War. The second is the Samurai begins with a high Dexterity, which you’ll use for the build.
What This Build is For
Bleed Builds are exceptionally versatile; unlike our previous Black Flame build, bleed can affect nearly all enemies. Besides specific bosses that are immune to bleed (i.e., Radagon and the Elden beast), bosses like Godfrey are very susceptible to bleed damage. This build mainly focuses on a Dex/Arc, as we will maximize bleed build-up. This build is tailored to level 100.
How Bleed Works
Bleed is a passive status effect applied by Bleed weapons that builds with hits landed on a target. Weapons like the Uchigatana or the Hookclaws have a passive effect saying “Blood loss build up” with a number next to it in the inventory — this indicates how much bleed is applied per hit. The more you upgrade these weapons and the higher they scale with your stats, the more blood loss build up. Building up enough bleed on a target will proc the bleed effect, doing a large chunk of the target’s HP as percent health damage.
Level 100 Stat Spread
- Dexterity – 22
- Arcane – 31
- Strength – 18
- Endurance – 15
- Vigor – 60
- Mind – 11
- Faith – 13
- Intelligence – 9
Best Weapons & Best Seal
Bleed builds are unique because they utilize two weapons simultaneously. Thus, we will discuss how and when to use these weapons together.
This weapon is available after killing the Bloody Finger Okina in the Mountaintop of the Giants. It packs a punch and is one of the best weapons in the game.
This weapon is best paired with the Seppoku Ash of War, maximizing bleed buildup. Additional incantations make this weapon easy to get but powerful to use.
Pairing the Nagakiba with either the Seppoku or Bloody Slash Ash of War is a great choice. Both are capable of high bleed damage and with the weapon being longer than other blades, you’ll have an increased reach.
This Seal will boost Dragon Communion incantations, which stacks with Arcane and coincidentally raises the effectiveness of bleed incantations used in this build as well.
To maximize the effectiveness of this build, here are the best Talismans to use:
- Crimson Amber Medallion
- Raises your max HP by a specific percentage, depending on which one you equip.
- Shard of Alexander
- Boosts the attack power of weapon skills
- Winged Sword Insignia
- Raises attack power with successive attacks
- Lord of Blood’s Exultation
- Blood loss in the vicinity increases attack power
- White Mask
- The White Mask is found in the Mohgwyn Dynasty Mausoleum. You can loot it after defeating a Nameless White Mask NPC. The helmet will slightly increase your attack power when blood loss occurs nearby.
The Incantations of this build are optional, but they add more variety to the playstyle, so they are encouraged. Besides the weapons, upgrading the Dragon Communion seal and blood incantations grant the most blood loss buildup in the game.
- Bloodflame Talons is a midrange incantation that works most effectively to stun enemies. The incantation offers sufficient bleed buildup, giving an extra visceral feeling to this build.
- Bloodflame Blade engulfs the chosen weapon in a blood-red flame, causing blood loss buildup. Flame Blade incantations can only be used on swords that can slot ashes of war, so the Uchigatana will be the best weapon to stack this incantation.
- Swarm of Flies is a deadly long-ranged incantation that releases dozens of flies toward an enemy and builds up bleed damage. This incantation is most effective in boss fights that involve movement mechanics. This incantation also creates openings to stun bosses and get some hits in.
Using This Build
In the right-handed weapons: Equip the Rivers of Blood Katana and Uchigatana. You want to have these two weapons in the right-hand slot.
In the left-handed weapons: Equip the Nagakiba and the Dragon Communion Seal. Dual wielding the Nagakiba with something like the Uchigatana will create quick and powerful blood loss buildup.
Rotation + Strategy For Groups of Enemies
- With groups of enemies, the Rivers of Blood Katana’s skill can hit multiple enemies simultaneously, so enemy swarms won’t be a big issue.
- Before healing, use the Swarm of Flies incantation to create distance between you and your enemies.
- The Bloodflame Talons incantation aids in maintaining crowd control, so use it when you feel overwhelmed by enemies.
Rotation & Strategy for Bosses
- Begin the fight by casting the Swarm of Flies incantation twice; this will begin a blood loss buildup.
- Follow up by selecting your left-handed blade so you can wield both Katanas.
- Jump up in the air and strike, dealing both jump damage and adding more blood loss buildup.
- Continue to dodge and double-strike with both blades. Additionally, following up by using the Rivers of Blood Katana’s skill deals extra bleed damage.
- All of this together makes for a monster build that deals significant damage when used correctly.
Hello again! I just commented on your Guts build, but I also wanted to comment on this one!
I was looking through your various builds, and I noticed an alarming lack of vigor — vigor is very important in Elden Ring, even moreso than any of the other Soulsborne games! Without at the very least 50 vigor (60 ideally) you will get one- or two-shot by most enemies in the Mountaintops of the Giants, not to mention the bosses! Running 20 vigor at level 100 is, frankly, insane, and really should be somewhere around 40-50.
Bleed buildup comes exclusively from the Arcane stat — Dexterity does not affect the level of bleed damage done to an enemy. If you’re going for high bleed buildup, then reinvest some points from Dex to Arc. Rivers of Blood is a nice weapon in that it scales well with both Dex and Arc, and you can get really good damage even if you focus on only one — which is what I would recommend. With 18 Dex and 40 Arc, you get 567 total AR on RoB — with your 42 Dex and 38 Arc, you only get 610, which is less than a 50 AR difference! This allows for 50 vigor, 16 Mind, 22 Endurance, and 12 faith (at level 101)!
As for weapons — straight up, ditch the Moonveil. Moonveil isn’t used for it’s bleed buildup, it’s used by mages since it scales best with Intelligence. You also really don’t even need the Uchigatana, as RoB is top tier when two-handed! If you wanted to dual wield for the katana powerstance moveset, I would recommend a Nagakiba — it is longer than the uchigatana, has the same bleed buildup, is infusable with Ashes of War, and is buffable with Bloodflame Blade. You get the Nagakiba by finishing Yura’s questline, or just by outright killing him in Limgrave.
I would also replace the Warrior Jar Shard with the Shard of Alexander, as it is a direct upgrade (but it is found further in the game). I would not recommend running both Claw Talisman and Winged Sword Insignia — you should focus on either successive attacks (Winged Sword) or jump attacks (Claw), but not both (just makes it easier to play lol). You could replace one or the other with the Dragoncrest Greatshield Talisman for survivability, or Erdtree’s Favour, or the Crimson Talisman, or the Emerald Talisman, etc.
Also, to clarify, you use the Dragon Communion seal not because it directly boosts blood incantations, but because it scales with Arcane — it gets more spellbuff from increases in the Arcane stat (another reason to focus on levelling Arc over Dex!).
Lastly, I would recommend equipping the White Mask headpiece — it increases your damage by 10% every time bloodloss procs on an enemy (or yourself), which is basically free damage with a bloodloss build!
Again, good guide, and very easy to read! Keep it up!