Beginner Questions

#1 Posted by Cramsy (1173 posts) -

Just picked this up a few days ago and have sunk about 4-5 hours into it and I'm loving my time so far. I've just rung the first bell (those mother fuckers on the roof) and now it's taking a while to level up so I've just got a few questions about levelling up and where to put my points.

I'm rocking (don't know exact names sorry) the sword (asoras striaght sword?) and shield that you steal from the sleeping dragon which vomits that water-y stuff at you. Just underneath the first area. I'm a pyromancer and I'm mostly going for sword, shield and my fire ball spell. When I level up should I be putting points into my magic weapon ability, special weapon or just raw strength to get my weapon damage up? Because the sword does magic damage does is that considered a magic weapon?

#2 Posted by gogosox82 (424 posts) -

@Cramsy: It depends what kind of build your going for. Do you want to make a faith/strength build or were you going for something else? There's also the option of putting points into dex and using dex based weapons like the katana or falchion. It really just depends on how you wanna play. Since this is your first playthrough, I would suggest playing around with a bunch of different weapons/playstyles until you find a style you like and then you can start planning to create your build around the weapon/playstyle. You also don't need to worry about putting points into faith/int if your going to use pryomancy. All you need to level that up is a trainer and you'll get access to at least 2 pretty early on and a third one later.

#3 Posted by JackSukeru (5922 posts) -

When looking at the weapon stat screen you can see something called BonusParam which is short for Bonus Parameter. It has a bunch of icons with a letter grade attached to each of them, the higher the grade (from E,D,C,B,A to S) the more of a attack bonus you recieve from that certain stat. The stats are: Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence and Faith in that order.

You will notice that Astora's Straight Sword has a C rank in STR, DEX and FTH, which means it gains an equal amount of attack bonus for those stats. You can see the attack bonus next to a weapon's attack value, I think the different attack values will be marked: Physical, Magical, Lightning and Fire. How it works is that every weapon has a base attack power, usually just physical, and a bonus attack value directly after it denoted by a + sign. The base attack power doesn't increase unless you upgrade the weapon, but the bonus is increased as you put points into the attributes that the weapon benefits from. Weapons with Fire or Lightning damage only have a base damage value and don't get any sort of bonus from stats, they can only be improved by upgrading them.

Let's use Astora's Straight Sword as an example. It will start out with the base values 80 Physical and 80 Magical, this means that it does BOTH 80 physical damage and 80 Magical damage. Any points put into the attributes STR or DEX will increase the bonus to physical damage, and any points put into FTH will increase its magical damage, however since it doesn't have any rank at all in Intelligence it wont get any benefit from points placed in INT (weapons that do benefit from INT will increase their magic damage, same as FTH). C is a very average rank so you won't get much benefit from putting points into any specific attribute with this weapon, what you want is a weapon that has a B or an A rank in an attribute.

This doesn't mean that the weapon is no good, it can still be useful when improved by a blacksmith and it gains a little of a bonus from almost everything. It does require the material Twinkling Titanite to upgrade though, and this material can be hard to come by early on.

Now weapons that have a high rank (B or A) in STR usually require a lot of STR to wield (all skills hit heavy diminishing returns after 40 yet some STR focused weapons require 50 STR to wield) and are also (naturally) quite heavy. Weapons that have a high rank (usually B) in DEX are knives, curved swords, bows and katanas, they are usually lighter and don't require a lot of points put into the DEX stat to wield yet benefit the most if you do so. Some weapons when upgraded at a blacksmith will even have their rank go up.

Most 'normal' weapons can be upgraded and converted into other types of weapons, Magic weapons are weapons that do magical damage as well as physical and benefit mostly from INT. Enchanted weapons are created by converting a halfway upgraded Magic weapon, they benefit more from INT but lose a lot of their physical damage scaling. Holy weapons are similar to Magic weapons in that they do both physical and magic damage, however they instead scale with the Faith (FTH) stat. They also have a holy attribute that has some special effects on enemies like the skeletons in the catacombs. Also similarly to the Magic weapons they can be converted into Occult weapons once upgraded halfway which increases their FTH scaling but decreases their physical damage, they also loose their holy attribute when this is done. Like previously mentioned Fire and Lightning weapons do not get any sort of stat scaling, instead they have set damage values. Fire weapons can however be converted into Chaos weapons once halfway upgraded which makes their damage scale with how much Humanity you're carrying.

Unique weapons, such as the Astora's Straight Sword that you're carrying, can only be upgraded by using Twinkling Titanite, up to a maximum of +5. They cannot be converted or upgraded like 'normal' weapons but can be pretty powerful on their own. The most powerful Unique weapons are the various Black Knight weapons as well as the weapon wielded by certain titanite guardians.

The benefit of Lightning and Fire weapons is that despite having a set damage value, that value can be pretty high depending on the weapon converted, and because they don't benefit from something like increased DEX you can make sure you just have enough stats to wield it and then ignore those stats in favor of getting more health or stamina.

Basically, when choosing how to play, decide early what type of weapon you like and how heavy your armor should be, then look into what stat that weapon benefits from, if it doesn't benefit from any particular stat consider upgrading it into a Lightning weapon (or Fire I guess, but Lightning is better in most situations). If it's a slower weapon consider wearing armor that gives you some 'Poise' so that you won't be staggered so easily when swinging it.

If you want to use Sorcery or Miracles make a character that also wields holy or magic weapons, or don't...it's up to you. Anyone can use Pyromancy since it doesn't require anything besides slots to equip spells in, so use it to your heart's content.

If any or all of this makes no sense to you feel free to ask me anything.

#4 Posted by golguin (3980 posts) -

If you're confused of which stat to raise then simply go with Endurance and Vitality.

Endurance is the most important stat in the game as it controls how much weight you can carry, which means you'll be able to use better armor and better armor is usually quite heavy. Endurance also controls your stamina (green bar), which allows you to perform more actions like running, dodging, and swinging your weapon.

Vitality obviously controls your health so raise that to live longer.

As a pyromancer you can level up your glove to increase the damage from your pyro spells at no detriment to your personal stats so go max that out. Other types of magic depend on the faith stat or intelligence stat to increase in power so pyromancy has a huge advantage over them.

#5 Posted by Terramagi (1159 posts) -

@golguin said:

If you're confused of which stat to raise then simply go with Endurance and Vitality.

Endurance is the most important stat in the game as it controls how much weight you can carry, which means you'll be able to use better armor and better armor is usually quite heavy. Endurance also controls your stamina (green bar), which allows you to perform more actions like running, dodging, and swinging your weapon.

Vitality obviously controls your health so raise that to live longer.

As a pyromancer you can level up your glove to increase the damage from your pyro spells at no detriment to your personal stats so go max that out. Other types of magic depend on the faith stat or intelligence stat to increase in power so pyromancy has a huge advantage over them.

It should be mentioned that, to level up your pyromancer glove, you have to free an NPC. I forget the "standard" progression, but he should be in the next area you're heading towards.

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