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Elden Ring Sorcery Spells Tier List | Best Sorcerer Magic Skills Ranked for PVP Builds
6/30/2022 6:12:17 PM

Elden Ring Sorcery Spells Tier List provides you with an overview of the best magic skills for Sorcery PVP Build in the 1.07 patch!

Elden Ring Sorcery Spells Tier List

Elden Ring Best Sorcery Spells Ranked (PVP) - Best Magic Skills For Each Type of Sorcerer PVP Builds

Here we bringing you a rank list for sorcery spells in PVP. Since this is a PVP tier list it will be centered around level 125 to 150, where the PVP meta is located. The list will also be skewed more towards duels rather than invasions even though we will give invasion some weight. We will rank the skills in each type of sorcery spell by breaking down the cons & pros of each sorcery spell. 

Elden Ring Sorcery Magic Spells Tier List

  • S Tier - Carian Slicer, Stars of Ruin, Star Shower, Swift Glintstone Shard, Night Shard

  • A Tier - Terra Magicus, Carian Piercer, Carian Phalanx, Magic Glintblade

  • B Tier - Collapsing Stars, Adula's Moonblade, Greatblade Phalanx, Ancient Death Rancor, Night Comet, Ambush Shard, Eternal Darkness

  • C Tier - Rykard's Rancor, Ranni's Dark Moon, Scholar's Shield, Freezing Mist, Carian Greatsword, Glintblade Phalanx, Rancorcall, Great Oracular Bubble, Gavel of Haima, Cannon of Haima, Loretta's Mastery, Founding Rain of Stars, Shard Spiral, Glintstone Cometshard

Now let's us go over each sorcery spell and rank them in each type of catalog:

Defensive Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • F Tier - Thops's Barrier, Carian Retaliation

Both Thops's Barrier and Carian Retaliation are defensive spells that have a similar Ash of War counterpart. The ash of war versions come out way quicker and is simply much more superior. These spells are also not very friendly on the scroll wheel when it’s something you want to immediately cast on reaction. They’re just trash spells we don't suggest running even in PVE, so they're easily F tiered.

Magma Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Rykard's Rancor

  • D Tier - Gelmir's Fury, Magma Shot, Roiling Magma

The magma sorceries are all pretty lackluster with their slow cast speed and awkward faith requirements. Yes, the faith requirements aren’t high,

but if we consider the Astrologer or the Prisoner class, the two most likely candidates for optimizing a spell build, you might need up to 12 extra points in faith for the lava spells. The Lava Staff also happens to be one of the worst scaling staves for endgame while the Prince of Death staff is backloaded, so at meta-levels, neither of them really beats the Carian Regal at equal levels of investment even if we include the bonus.

It also only grants 15% boost if you’re just using it on the off-hand as a passive stick. The saving grace for these spells is their large area coverage and control, allowing them to float at D tier. The only lava sorcery that is not in D tier is Rykard’s Rancor because of its annoying tracking. You will find that delayed hits for spells tend to be decent because you can setup for combos or delay actions. This is especially important now after 1.05 without regular chain casting. Setting up time delayed traps is a large part of keeping your enemies on their toes.

Gravity Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • B Tier - Collapsing Stars

  • D Tier - Gravity Well, Rock Sling

  • F Tier - Meteorite of Astel, Meteorite

Next comes the gravity sorceries, of which only three: rock sling, meteorite, and meteorite of Astel deals physical damage. It probably isn’t a surprise Meteorite and Meteorite of Astel are F tier. They don’t work well being that slow, especially against smaller targets who can just roll. Gravity well doesn’t deal good damage nor damage to FP ratio even if we consider dual wielding staves with the regal in the mainland and the meteorite staff off-hand for a whopping 30% bonus. The only gimmick that it helps with is dragging enemies in. However, collapsing stars also do the same thing except much better because it is easier to catch your enemy with collapsing stars as the projectiles don’t all arrive at the same time.

It also comes with higher poise damage than gravity well and can be charged for delayed timing. Finally, while Rock Sling is a great tool in PVE, you’ll find it difficult to hit with a rock sling unless your opponent has no idea what they’re doing. Its specialty of being a reliable source of

physical damage for PVE doesn’t help it much in PVP as the projectiles are incredibly slow and have poor tracking. It doesn’t fire off that quickly either and if this is for invasions, rocks can easily get destroyed on the wall in narrower places.

Moon Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Ranni's Dark Moon

  • D Tier - Rennala's Full Moon

Next, let us discuss frost sorceries alongside some other types of sorceries starting with the moon sorcery. We know Rennala’s doesn’t do frost

damage nor apply the frost status effect, but we are grouping it with Ranni’s Dark Moon as moon sorceries. And it is precisely because Ranni’s applies 270 frostbites with the phantom status effect being a thing that is ranked higher than the Rennala. These two spells are slow to cast, but if

you manage to land either of them they’re quite powerful. The other thing is even if you miss, due to the phantom status effect, you also apply the moon debuff which decreases your opponent’s magic damage negation by 10% in PVP for 60 seconds.

And since most sources for sorcery is magic damage, this helps quite a bit. And as for why they’re D and C ranked, it’s because they’re high risk, high cost, and also high reward. But, the chances of them landing on someone competent is quite low. You can also get punished during the casting phase unless you happen to be far enough. If not for the fact that these spells track over an incredible distance, they would certainly be ranked lower.

Buff Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • A Tier - Terra Magicus

  • C Tier - Scholar's Shield

  • D Tier - Scholar's Armament, Unseen Blade, Unseen Form

  • F Tier - Frozen Armament, Starlight, Lucidity

The Frozen Armament only adds 48 frost buildup and you can’t even use this on most weapons that already have a secondary damage type or status effect. Frost infusion is better on any weapon if you want the frost status effect. Furthermore, because of the low buildup, you pretty much rather just take Scholar's Armament, which is also narrow in its choices of usable weapons, pretty much Clayman’s Harpoon. And, even on the Clayman’s, more AR doesn’t necessarily translate to stronger ash of war because there are three different major types of ash of war scaling and the base infusion matters quite a bit for two of the three types. Therefore, even on a Clayman build, you might opt to not use the scholar’s armament.

On the other hand, the scholar’s shield is actually quite decent if you run a shield. It increases the magic damage negation of your shield by 70% and other damage negation by 30%. It also increases your guard boost by 20%. This is a decent spell, but often times if you’re going for a great shield poke build, the great shield poke itself is already OP. This does make things even stronger, but you’re also stuck with the shield’s skill unless you have “no skill” attached to your shield. Your opponent is also going to be less likely to make stupid trades and just wait for you to give an opening.

The invisible sorceries are most applicable in invasion shenanigans. Starlight makes your surroundings bright. Does nothing much for PVP especially when 1800 Elden Ring runes can get the job done too. As for lucidity, you probably forgot this thing even existed, but it does a very narrow job and you can just use boluses.

Terra Magicus though boosts your magic damage by 35% while you’re standing in the area, giving you a very strong area control. It makes approaching you difficult because slicer can deal absurd amounts of damage for 4FP and all your other magic spells are also boosted. Not to mention, it also works on weapon arts and weapons that do magic damage, like Moonveil. Because it allows you a more powerful trade and area control to the point where you can force your enemy to retreat or play carefully around it, this is rated A tier.

Mist Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Freezing Mist

  • D Tier - Night Maiden's Mist

  • F Tier - Fia's Mist

The Mist Spells also provide area control, but these don’t last very long while requiring your opponent to stay within them for a significant amount of time for a decent effect.  Starting with Fia's Mist, there aren’t a whole lot of ways to apply death light and none of the ways available are very powerful or consistent which is honestly better than the alternative where death light is OP and people just run around without any damage by killing you with death light. 

Night Maiden's Mist can burn quite a bit of your opponent’s HP and goes through shield too, but it does require your enemies to stay within them. Sure, it can work on some less-skilled players, but you’re unlikely to meet good players who blindly charge into the mist. Furthermore, it also damages the caster if the caster touches it. Cold itself is also a great status effect in PVP. Furthermore, you can also stay within the mist if needed. This only lasts for 15 seconds, but you can free aim the skill to make it apply to quite a large area. 

Frostbite Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • B Tier - Adula's Moonblade

  • D Tier - Glintstone Icecrag

  • F Tier - Zamor Ice Storm

Zamor Ice Storm's slow cast speed makes this spell very weak because its area of effect is right around the caster. You will have to stand still and cast this spell while praying your opponent doesn’t just do more damage than you can do with this spell. That is also assuming you have enough poise to tank through their attacks because this spell doesn’t provide any hyper armor at all. Glintstone Icecrag is slow travelling and very short in distance when compared to the other projectile spells. It also doesn’t come with the strong tracking of spells like star shower. And finally, Adula's Moonblade which is both a frost spell and a sword spell. 

After the motion value (or damage %) nerf on this spell, it is still decent especially because of the large area it covers and the frostbite it still applies, but much weaker than before. Its startup isn’t quick, so if you want to run this spell, we suggest running at least either the Radagon Icon or the Azur’s Glintstone staff if not both to make it more difficult for your opponent to evade this spell or punish you during your cast time.

Sword Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • S Tier - Carian Slicer

  • A Tier - Carian Piercer

  • C Tier - Carian Greatsword

The three other sword sorceries are: Carian Slicer, Carian Piercer, and Carian Greatsword. 

Carian Greatsword acts like Adula’s Moonblade without the extra sword wave. It covers a huge area and has very good damage to FP ratio. This thing actually hits harder than the Adula's at the melee range, but we would say it leans more toward the invasion side of Elden Ring because of its shorter-range while sharing the startup of the Adula's. It is often overshadowed by the Adula’s because of their similarities, but in terms of power, we think this is still very much a C tier. 

Carian Slicer should be pretty self-explanatory. The spell with good damage while having the highest damage to FP ratio whilst still being incredibly quick on its crouching and running casts. Because of the existence of backloaded staves, this thing can hit like a truck at higher int levels like 80 Int versus say, simply holding a magic straight sword. This is undoubtedly the best spell for mages to use as a melee deterrence. Thank the Elden Lords you can’t dual wield Carian Slicers. 

Carian Piercer is in the A tier for its ability to roll catch especially because you can charge it to delay its timing as well. This thing hits quite hard and has decent damage to FP ratio. Its uncharged version also deals 101.75 poise damage, which is enough to stagger most opponents. 

Glintblade Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • A Tier - Carian Phalanx, Magic Glintblade

  • B Tier - Greatblade Phalanx

  • C Tier - Glintblade Phalanx

If we’re talking about the swords, we might as well discuss Glintblade Sorceries which is not to be confused with sword sorceries. Carian Retaliation is also Glintblade Sorcery, but as we said, “Don’t use it.” Three of the other four serve nearly identical purposes, summoning flying sentry blades floating above or beside you.

Using a Carian Regal Staff at 80 intelligence with my sorcery spreadsheet, we can see the damage each individual blade deals before damage negation.

Carian Phalanx, the spell that summons 9 blades, is overall stronger than the Glintblade Phalanx which only summons 5 blades.

Greatblade Phalanx will tend to do a bit less damage than the Carian Phalanx for more FP and stamina cost. However, it does deal more poise damage.

We do find the Carian Phalanx slightly superior though because these swords will very often be dodged and you want to spam them as a form

of deterrence rather than a steady stream of damage.

With these blades up you know your opponent has to dodge them once when you’re close, allowing you the offensive upper hand.

Magic Glintblade, on the other hand, is a delayed attack by time rather than distance. This one is also a very good setup tool that forces your opponent to dodge or strafe even from afar. This can buy you time for your flask or to set up combos. With chain casting not being a thing, the main way of mixing up with sorcery is time delayed attacks that allow you to mess up your opponent’s timing.

Death Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • B Tier - Ancient Death Rancor

  • C Tier - Rancorcall

  • F Tier - Tibia's Summons, Explosive Ghostflame

Tibia's Summons is also a delayed spell, but the crappiest one of them all with the skeletons attack the location of your opponent at the instance where they were spawned without the slightest tracking. Combine that with its extremely slow cast speed makes it a crap spell. The best way to land this spell? Click cast and then pray your opponent doesn’t know how to move or is afking.

Explosive Ghostflame is extremely cool, but long cast and long recovery. Maybe an element of surprise versus less experience players, but you’re just asking to be punished for casting this spell in PVP and your opponent has two windows to do this. Once before you cast, and once after if they didn’t punish you the first time around.

Rancorcall is essentially a slightly more FP efficient Ancient Death Rancor with 6 skulls instead of the Ancient Death’s 9 skulls. Ancient Death Rancor definitely has the overall damage advantage, but Rancorcall can still force your opponent to dodge. The other big advantage Rancorcall has over the Ancient Death is its much lower faith requirement. This means it is easily incorporated into other builds by paying a lower faith cost in order to have an annoying spell that chases your enemies down, placing it at C tier while the Ancient Death scores a B tier.

Digger Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • D Tier - Rock Blaster

  • F Tier - Shatter Earth

Rock Blaster is basically the superior version of shatter earth, but still these spells are difficult to land and mostly for invasions and not duels. It doesn’t mean you can’t do decent damage with Rock Blaster if you can somehow catch your enemy. But, it just isn’t quick nor particularly powerful and is certainly more geared towards invasion.

Shatter Earth has 200 innate poise for Hyper Armor and Rock Blaster has multiple Hyper Armor bonuses at different times of the cast. It has 150 on startup, and 100 while it is held, and 200 on the finishing attack.

Thorn Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • F Tier - Briars of Punishment, Briars of Sin

Briar spells are a mess right now. The only thing that was used to save Briars of Sin was chain casting. Now, without it, it is just as bad as Briars of Punishment, especially with their faith requirements. Maybe a DLC can make thorn sorceries better, but right now they’re just a meme.

Bubble Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Great Oracular Bubble

  • F Tier - Oracle Bubbles

Oracle Bubbles is crap with its slow cast and weak bubbles, but Great Oracular Bubble can be used as an area control tool. It moves faster than you think and if you charge it up, at the end of its path you can think of it as a Mist type spell that explodes and deals high damage to your enemies if they come in too close. A great tool to surprise your enemies with.

Haima Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Gavel of Haima, Cannon of Haima

Gavel of Haima was decently popular from chain cast after they added 200 Hyper Armor to it. Now, both spells are more invasion oriented as their slow cast speed makes them difficult to consistently pull off in duels while producina positive outcome. For Cannon of Haima, we suggest trying to free aim it if you’re trying to use it in duels. 

Loretta Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Loretta's Mastery

  • D Tier - Loretta's Greatbow

Loretta's Greatbow's main purpose is for sniping targets from afar, but even then you’re likely to miss if the enemy moves. This is certainly more geared towards invasions too. Loretta's Mastery has much better tracking. It is also harder to fully dodge because of the spaced-out timing. You do need a more open space for this spell as it shoots the arrows across a very wide range. Neither of these spells is very FP efficient. While this spell doesn’t resemble Stars of Ruin nor Star Shower, they’re actually spells that perform roughly the same function except it goes further. Once again, even Loretta’s Mastery is more invasion oriented because its specialty lies in its range.

Crystal Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • D Tier - Crystal Burst, Crystal Barrage, Shattering Crystal, Crystal Torrent

Next comes the Crystal Spells and their non-staff buffed counterparts. Crystal Burst and Crystal Barrage are not buffed by the Crystal Staff even though they have Crystal in their names. These spells work a lot better against larger enemies in PVE as you can land more crystal hits. In PVP, you can use their shotgunning type properties to catch your enemies in a bit of damage, but the individual MV or damage % of the attacks are quite low. And because our player models are way smaller than most monsters we fight, the crystal spells aren’t that effective in PVP. The last Crystal Spell without a regular counterpart is Crystal Release. Like the Zamor, this uses yourself as the center. It costs quite a bit of FP and deals crap damage. We suggest avoiding this spell even in invasions because you can find better sources of area control where you don’t have to sacrifice yourself. 

Downpour Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • C Tier - Founding Rain of Stars

  • D Tier - Magic Downpour

The Downpour spells creates an area that damages your opponent after a short delay. 

Founding Rain of Stars has quite a wide area control and does an ok amount of damage even though it is quite simple for your opponent to simply avoid the area.

Magic Downpour has quite the low damage, but it does have a neat gimmick. You can reflect your own projectile with Golden Retaliation. If you point downwards without targeting an enemy you can get the spawn of this spell to come out quite low and be more consistent with retaliation. This isn’t an optimal setup on the screen by the way, which is why Golden Retaliation is doing such low damage. 

Star Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • S Tier - Stars of Ruin, Star Shower

  • F Tier - Glintstone Stars

Stars of Ruin and Star Shower are both S-tiered because of their annoyingly powerful tracking. While both spells are very inefficient damage FP wise, their incredible tracking and spaced-out timing make it very difficult to fully dodge.

Star Shower essentially does the same thing as Stars of Ruin forcing your opponent to dodge. While it only has 6 shots instead of 12, it has a higher MV per shot.

Stars of Ruin's damage suffers greatly from its attacks being split into even more attacks at a lower MV per attack. Therefore, in terms of real damage star shower's per hit damage is higher. Essentially, stars of ruin last longer, but your opponent would most likely still be spending that longer duration dodging. So both stars of ruin and star shower will force the enemy to play defensively. 

As for Glintstone stars, three is not enough and is very easily dodgeable. Combine that with the star spells poor damage to FP ratio, easily an F tier because you would always pick star shower or ruins over Glintstone Stars. 

Projectile Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • S Tier - Swift Glintstone Shard

  • C Tier - Shard Spiral, Glintstone Cometshard

  • D Tier - Glintstone Arc, Glintstone Shard, Glintstone Pebble

  • F Tier - Comet Azur

Shard Spiral lost its chain cast, so it is now much harder to setup. You either have to chain it from a jump or cast it with the length cast time. Furthermore, while it does force your enemy to strafe properly or dodge once, you can achieve the same effect with other spells. This one is quite the knowledge check, but it does have the potential for a combo setup.

The Glintstone Arc is really just a wider Glintstone pebble. You can’t strafe it as well, but u can still easily roll it because it's not fast like the swift Glintstone shard.

Comet Azur might be a boss slayer in PVE, but the cast time for this spell should explain its F tier rating without further elaboration.

Swift Glintstone Shard is one of the best universal tools for sorcerers. This spell is quick and allows you to outrange all other melee options. With its low FP cost, this spell is your best tool at kiting and is a rare spell that can be used while jumping, making it great to kite with or chain cast after a jump.

For the other four projectile spells, you can think of them like this. The same-colored ones are a pair because of their startup animation time. The pink pair is the Great Glintstone Shard and the Glintstone pebble. Both are outclassed by the swift Glintstone shard, but if you are going to run either of them, the great Glintstone shard is better because of its slightly longer range and higher damage per hit. It is less FP efficient than the pebble, but if you’re running them, it is to deal damage rather than trying to be FP efficient with a minor spell like this, which also puts the Comet and Glintstone Cometshard at a higher tier because you can still chain cast them out of jumps. Comet ranks higher too because if you’re going to want one instance of burst damage, you would pick the one that deals more damage in one hit since you can’t freely cast these spells. So you won’t be spamming them.

Night Sorcery Spells Rank & Explain

  • S Tier - Night Shard

  • B Tier - Night Comet, Ambush Shard, Eternal Darkness

The Night Sorceries share a lot of common features with the regular versions, but they are very powerful with the staff of loss. In fact, if you watch the analysis for nightwielder and wintry night on my channel and the accompanying fights, you will discover some secrets with these spells.

First up, the night sorceries not only do more damage than their regular counterparts with the right setup, they are also more FP efficient. And to top that off, the biggest advantage they have over the regular sorceries in PVP is that they are not counterable by spell parries like Carian Retaliation, Thops, Golden Retaliation, nor even Eternal Darkness. However, they do require you to at least off-hand the staff of loss if not dual wield staff of losses. This means that your spell selections are much more limited or your other spells would be weaker versus another setup. This is indeed something to keep in mind.

Still, we give the Night Shard a S tier and the Night Comet a B tier because night comet is much better than the comet whereas the night shard is only about the same as the swift Glintstone shard. 

Ambush Shard is the same color with nearly the same interactions as the other night sorceries. It isn’t actually difficult to dodge if you know it’s coming nor is it cheap to cast. The main use of this spell is to hit targets hiding behind shields.

As for Eternal Darkness, it does next to nothing against non-sorcerers, but it is indeed effective against many sorceries, often giving you a large advantage. However, it isn’t a cure all. It takes 25 FP to cast and lasts around 15 seconds. The caster also has to be close enough within the dark hole range for the gravitation to protect the caster. It doesn’t work against all the spells like Carian Slicer for example. Furthermore, if there isn’t enough distance between the enemy and the caster for the suction, even projectile spells can hit the enemy before they get sucked away. Night sorceries and Ambush Shard also ignore eternal darkness. So, there are plenty of workarounds. There is also nothing that stops your opponent from just swapping to their weapon and using weapon arts. Therefore, we are giving it a B tier.

And, this is the final tier list for sorceries in PVP, we strongly suggest avoiding all spells in F tier and only using the D tier spells in very niche builds. Ideally, you won’t really be tapping into either of these tiers for most general sorcery builds because of how inefficient they are, which is a big problem with spells in general for PVP.

With a quick tally of the number of spells in each tier, we quickly find that C to S tier only comprises 30 spells while D and F add up to 40. The top of this tier list is very narrow, while the number of poor spells outweighs even usable spells, not to mention good ones. We really do hope there are future DLCs that introduce better spells for PVP and hopefully see better balance patches than patch 1.05 for the balance of actually weak spells.


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