5 ways to get your Elden Ring character ready for Shadow of the Erdtree DLC

5 ways to get your Elden Ring character ready for Shadow of the Erdtree DLC
Images via FromSofware | Bandai Namco

Written by 

Jack Roberts


11th Apr 2024 16:24


Elden Ring’s Shadow of the Erdtree DLC is only months away, so now is the perfect time to jump back into the Lands Between to get a character ready for perhaps the most hotly anticipated expansion since Phantom Liberty.

If you’re anything like me, you’ve had your main character just sat by Miquella’s cocoon in the game, just waiting for something to happen. But if you’ve not got a character DLC ready, these are some tips that should help you on your way.

Rune farming & ideal levels

If you’re going to level up fast and get your character to the ideal Rune Level before Shadow of the Erdtree releases, you’re going to need to get your hands on plenty of Runes, so farming them is essential.

While we have an entire guide on the best places to farm Runes in Elden Ring, a great place to get some early levels in the game is by killing the Elder Dragon Greyoll in Caelid. You can get there relatively early by starting Gurranq and D’s questline and teleporting to the Bestial Sanctum from the Third Church of Marika.

The location of Greyoll on the Elden Ring Map
Click to enlarge

From the Bestial Sanctum, head down to the Fort Faroth Site of Grace and there you’ll find the dragon that can barely move. If you position yourself by its hind legs, the other dragons roaming the area won’t attack you, despite Greyoll’s roar to action.

While you can certainly chip away at the dragon’s hefty health bar, the best way to kill it quickly is to use a weapon with Bleed potential, like the Uchigatana that the Samurai class starts with. As you’re about to take out the final chunk of its health, be sure to use a Gold-Pickled Fowl Foot or the Gold Scarab Talisman to boost the huge number of Runes you’ll get.

Ideally, you’ll want to have a character that is level 125 to 150, but if that isn’t possible, reaching level 80 to 100 should suffice.

Defeat the key bosses

It’s already been established that you’ll have to defeat Radahn and Mohg before you can access the Land of Shadow. The entrance to the DLC is likely going to be at the Cocoon of the Empyrean Site of Grace which will only be revealed upon defeating Mohg.

While Mohg is certainly a difficult boss, there are a few ways that you can make the fight much easier. For one, while he may be the Lord of Blood, he is quite susceptible to Bleed damage, so having a Bleed build may just come in handy.

The Purifying Crystal Tear in Elden Ring
Click to enlarge

Additionally, having the Purifying Crystal Tear, that you'll see above, mixed in your Flask of Wondrous Physick will help counter his Bloodboon Ritual which would ordinarily decimate your health bar.

Radahn is certainly not as strong as he used to be, however, he can still present a significant roadblock if you’re going into the fight under levelled. The best thing you can do here is make use of the Summons that will appear on the battlefield, as well as some other tricks that we’ve detailed in our guide on how to beat the dreaded Starscourge

While these bosses are required to access the DLC, I would also advise defeating Rennala at the Academy of Raya Lucaria so that you can freely re-spec your character.

Stock up on Larval Tears & Smithing Stones

With a new DLC comes plenty of new weapons, incantations, and sorceries that you’ll undoubtedly want to try. While picking a build is important for the farming aspect here, having plenty of Larval Tears to hand will allow you to re-spec your character and alter its stats.

A Larval Tear in Elden Ring
Click to enlarge

So, if you find a weapon that you can’t resist trying out (I’ve got my eye on that Dueling Shield that was shown at the end of the trailer), you can always head to Rennala and change your build accordingly.

Additionally, you’ll need plenty of Smithing Stones and Sombre Smithing Stones so you can upgrade these weapons, plenty of which can be found around the world, particularly in the Crystal Tunnels in and around Caelid.

Pick an optimal build

While Elden Ring is renowned for a huge amount of build variety and interchangeability, it’s important to find an optimal build that will be right for you as you build your character and level it up efficiently.

I would opt for the Samurai, Confessor, or Wretch classes for the bulk of this playthrough.

The Samurai class gives you access to one of the earliest and most efficient Bleed weapons in the game, the Uchigatana and will allow you to make the most of the status effect to make quick work of powerful enemies.

The Samurai starting class in Elden Ring
Click to enlarge

The Confessor and Prisoner classes are hybrids of sorts, with the former focusing on Strength and Faith, and the latter focusing on Dexterity and Intelligence. This provides you with a variety of incantations or spells to choose from, as well as some sturdy physical damage.

The Wretch class may seem like one of the weakest in Elden Ring, but it's even spread of stats allows you to go down any road you desire. Additionally, if you choose to change your build down the line, you can do so with balanced stats for complete freedom.

However, if none of these classes take your fancy, we have plenty of different builds for each of the Elden Ring classes, including:

Don’t finish the game

This may seem odd, and while it may not be optimal to not head to Farum Azula to get some of the endgame goodies like the Shard of Alexander Talisman or some of the stronger Smithing Stone upgrade materials, I would stop your playthrough before beating the Fire Giant.

While beating Maliketh will change the layout of Leyndell, defeating the Fire Giant and heading to Farum Azula will remove Melina from play, meaning that you may miss some story beats potentially on offer with her. As such, if you can wait it out, stop when you get to the Mountaintop of Giants.

Melina in Elden Ring
Click to enlarge

Moreover, I certainly wouldn’t advise going down the Frenzied Flame ending path on this playthrough for the reasons above. You want to keep as many characters in play as possible to discover potentially new dialogue and actions from them.

And that’s it, some tips to get your freshly made character ready for the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC. There’s not long now until the release, so make sure to start building your characters now before time runs out.

If you’re on the hunt for more guides and news coverage, head on over to our Elden Ring homepage, where you can find out everything you need to about the game’s map size, Legacy Dungeons and more.

Jack Roberts
About the author
Jack Roberts
Jack is a Guides Writer at GGRecon. With a BA (Hons) & MA in English and Creative Writing, he was also the Gaming Editor for The Indiependent. When not pondering which game has the best cup of coffee (and drinking far too much of it himself), he can often be found playing Dead by Daylight, Street Fighter or making yet another build in Bloodborne.
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