Best Sorcery builds in Dark Souls 3

The magic builds in Dark Souls 3 are some of the most fun you can have in the game. There are a number of ways to build a good wizard and each build uses special gear to maximize their potential.

You need to think about where to place your stats early and whether you prefer long range or up close and personal with your magic builds.

Beginning of the game

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Early game wizards will rely heavily on Heavy Soul Arrow as a high damage spell until they unlock Orbeck and purchase the large Soul and Heavy Soul Arrow variants. Farron Flashsword and Soul Greatsword can also be useful for bosses like Deacons or large groups of enemies.

Stats and equipment must be:

  • Investment in INT and ATT for damage and magic, as well as VIG and END for health and stamina
  • Upgrade the Sorcerer’s Staff as much as possible unless players want to use the Heysel weapon.
  • Young Dragon Ring and Sage Ring must be equipped at all times.
  • Utility spells like Spook and Pestilent Mist can be used to negate fall damage or fight enemies stuck in place.

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The Chloranthy Ring is found relatively early in the game and is especially useful for players who find themselves low on stamina. Using the staff weapon art for a temporary damage boost should not be underestimated as the damage is multiplicative. Farron Dart and Great Farron Dart are decent spells, but Great Soul Arrow is almost always better to use.

pure witchcraft

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There are several ways to maximize damage while maintaining survivability for players who want to avoid guns and play a pure wizard. A good amount of Stamina is still a must, but 60 Intelligence and around 30 Attunement should be what players are aiming for.

  • The Staff of the Court Sorcerer will be the best staff to use at 60 INT.
  • Either the Branch of the Sorcerer’s Tree, the Sage’s Crystal Staff, or the Scholar’s Candlestick should be at hand.
  • The Magic Clutch Ring, Howling Dragon Crest Ring, Young Dragon Ring, and Lloyd’s Sword Ring or Red Tear Ring will maximize damage. The sage’s ring can be exchanged if players don’t use the wizard tree branch.
  • Spells should include either the Great Soul Arrow, Great Heavy Soul Arrow, or Crystal Soul Spear depending on how much FP the player has in reserve. Homing Crystal Soulmass is useful for burst bonus damage or staggering enemies that are closing in. Pestilent Mist is another useful spell that has use in specific situations like fighting Midir or even Wolnir.

One hand should have the main stick with the other holding one of the other three polishing catalysts. With the Witchtree branch, players can remove the Sage Ring for another damage buff ring or something for survival, like the Boon Ring. With the Sage’s Crystal Staff, players must use the Catalyst Weapon Art for this, but continue to use their primary staff to get the effect. The Scholar’s Candlestick is useful for players who don’t want to keep using a Weapon Art buff and want a passive damage buff instead.

melee mage

Players who want to use magic but still want to fight at close range should invest in Crystal Gems. Infusing a weapon with a Crystal Gem will cause the weapon to evolve with Intelligence. Otherwise, there are a few alternatives for players not wishing to go down this route.

  • Magic Weapon, Large Magic Weapon, and Crystal Magic Weapon can all be weapon applied when thrown from a staff in the other hand. They each add a spell buff modifier to the weapon, with the Crystal Magic Weapon being the strongest at 0.95.
  • The Heysel Pickaxe is a weapon that can be obtained easily by fighting Yellowfinger Heyself. It can be used as both a catalyst and a weapon for players looking to try both.
  • Both Farron Flashsword and Soul Greatsword are ranged melee spells that use low FP to cast. Some staves also increase the duration of these spells with a small decrease in their potency.
  • Moonlight Greatsword is the strongest weapon for a build like this. He can easily reach an attack rating of 500 with an intelligence of 60.

Using melee weapons also means attack buff gear can be used like Flynn’s ring. Moonlight Greatsword’s weapon art can do a lot of damage, but it’s usually best to use a spell instead. The FP cost of the weapon art might be more appealing, but its range and low mobility when using it aren’t worth it. Immolate Tinder and Greatsword of Judgment are great alternatives for a melee weapon for players not interested in transposing Oceiros’ soul or fighting the Heysel.

Dark Wizard

Using the Izalith Staff and Karla, this build is a great alternative to use against magic resistant bosses. Using the Blindfold Mask and Dark Clutch Ring, dark sorceries can do a lot of damage. For melee variants, using a Dark Gem will have a weapon scale with INT and FTH. Spells are limited, but Great Soul Dregs and Affinity can easily be acquired with no soul transposition required.

  • The Onyx Blade and Dark Infused Scythe Hand are melee weapons that work well for dark builds.
  • Pure Dark players can use Dark Edge for close combat
  • The Ring of the Young Dragon and the Ring of the Howling Dragon’s Crest also increase dark sorceries, making them very useful for this build.


There are two catalysts worth noting for wizards. The Archdeacon’s Great Staff uses faith instead of wits to cast sorceries but with a hold. Players should always have the correct amount of Intelligence in the stated requirement when attuning a spell.

The other catalyst is the Golden Ritual Spear which works similarly but can also be used as a weapon. Archdeacon’s staff surpasses him as a catalyst but pales in comparison if players plan to attack in melee.

Using these alternatives will allow players to level both Faith and Intelligence, so Miracles, Pyromancies, and Dark versions of spells can be good to equip. Both Catalysts won’t do as much damage when casting dark spells compared to using the Izalith Staff, but it might be worth it for players experimenting with Faith builds.

1655061542 334 Best Sorcery builds in Dark Souls 3Image via Bandai Namco

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The catalyst that wizards use to cast spells comes in the form of staves. There are two main staves that will be used to throw it, but other staves are worth mentioning for their unique style of play.

  • Sorcerer’s Staff – This is the starter staff for the Assassin and Sorcerer classes. Up to 50 Intelligence, this will be the preferred staff to use throughout the game. It has a spell bonus of 226 to 60 intelligence at +10.
  • Court Sorcerer’s Staff – This will be the best staff to use in most situations. It is obtained about halfway through the base game in Profaned Capital, either by killing an Imitation Chest or using an Undead Hunter Charm to open it.
  • Sage’s Crystal Staff – Obtained from Castle Lothric, this staff has a unique weapon art that increases sorcery damage by 30%. It is even weaker than the starter staff, but due to its buff it can be used alone or as an off-hand to enhance the player’s primary staff.
  • Branch of Witchtree – This staff is best carried in the hand due to its low stats. The passive buff this staff gives is notable as it gives the player a boost to their casting speed. Normally this is done with the Sage Ring, but opening a ring slot might be better depending on the build. Casting speed is equivalent to 99 dexterity.
  • Izalith Staff – Primarily used for dark sorcery, this staff will excel in a dark build. An equal investment in intelligence and faith is needed to get the most out of this personnel.

There are many rings, pieces of armor, and weapons that provide useful bonuses to wizards. Many of these can be swapped out for more protective gear, but the damage trade-off is noticeable.


  • Ring of the Young Dragon – One of the starting pieces of Sorcerer class gear, the ring increases sorcery damage by 12%. It is given to the player by Orbeck after buying three spells and giving them a scroll if not.
  • Bellowing Dragoncrest Ring – A more powerful version of the Ring of the Young Dragon that increases sorcery damage by 20%. This is in the Irithyll Dungeon behind a door unlocked with the Jailer’s Key.
  • Sage Ring – There are three versions of the Sage Ring between New Game and New Game Plus Two. They each increase the player’s casting speed while equipped by the same amount as the player would when having 30, 35, and 40 Dexterity. The Sage Ring +2 is always upgraded by the Witchtree Branch and they do not stack.
  • Magic Clutch Ring – This ring can be tricky for players new to using spells. It trades defense for damage and should be used with the certainty that the power is worth it. It increases magic attacks by 15% while decreasing damage absorption of all physical attacks by 10%.
  • Dark Clutch Ring – This ring works the same as the other clutch rings, but for dark damage.
  • Lloyd’s Sword Ring – The ring is not specific to sorcery builds, but it increases attack rate by 10% when at full health.
  • Red Teardrop Ring – Like Lloyd’s Ring, this ring can be used for any build but should be used with caution. It increases attack rate by 20% while being below 20% health.


  • Scholar’s Candlestick – This weapon increases sorcery damage by 10% when equipped.
  • Moonlight Greatsword – One of the best weapons for any Intelligence build. It requires 16 strength and 11 dexterity to wield, but it’s more than worth putting points into those stats to wield. This weapon is for short range and melee builds that want to wield a powerful weapon.


  • Twilight Crown – Found in Farron’s Keep, this piece of armor increases magic damage by 10%. The only downside to this helmet is its -30 magic defense.
  • Blindfold Mask – Dropped by the dark spirit of the Wailing Knight, this helmet increases dark damage by 10%. Like the Twilight Crown, it has a dark defense of -30.

Many different items in Dark Souls 3 can be used in combination to…

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Best Sorcery builds in Dark Souls 3

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