The best Elden Ring PVP builds for Colosseum and Invasions

Elden Ring Colosseum Update
(Image credit: Bandai Namco)

The best Elden Ring PVP builds are usually based around an OP weapon or spell and getting everything you can out of it to maximize your power. Whether you're playing at the new Elden Ring Colosseum locations, invading other players, or holding off invasions yourself, having the weapons ready to deal with other Tarnished is almost as important in Elden Ring as dealing with NPC enemies and bosses. That's why we'll cover all the best Elden Ring PVP builds in our guide below, and what's currently on top in the game's ever-changing meta.

Best Elden Ring PVP builds

Elden Ring

(Image credit: FromSoftware)

As mentioned, the best PVP builds in Elden Ring are usually very focused, either on a spell, a weapon, or a technique, as jack-of-all-trades don't tend to flourish. It's early days in the new meta of the Colosseum, the first big Elden Ring DLC addition, so people are still getting a feel for what's OP, but there's already some standouts worth highlighting.

Of course, if you're a solo player more interested in fighting offline horrors and bosses, you can find more of our Elden Ring best builds here, with some that can practically one-shot the game's toughest terrors. Keep in mind for the builds to follow that where we haven't mentioned particular things - such as armor or all four Talismans - that's because they're inessential to the build or there isn't an obvious contender. Pick options that suit your tastes and playstyles, and make it your own!

Rivers of Blood PVP Build

The Rivers of Blood Katana is considered one of the most famously overpowered weapons of Elden Ring, and it's coming back with a vengeance. Basically this a build about the Bleed stat and manoeuvrability, so here's some good starting points:

  • Primary Stats: Arcane, Vigor
  • Secondary Stats: Endurance, Dexterity
  • Weapons/Equipment: Rivers of Blood, Dragon Communion Seal
  • Armor: White Mask (and general armor to keep you in lightweight category)
  • Talismans: Lord of Blood’s Exultation, Rotten Winged Sword Insignia, Millicent’s Prosthesis, Shard of Alexander
  • Spells: Swarm of Flies, Flame, Grant Me Strength, Dragonfire (or similar Incantation)

This is a pretty simple build - get in and hit hard with the Rivers of Blood and its Weapon Art to land the Bleed condition as fast as possible, while staying light on your feet and never letting up. You've got some spells to keep aggressive if you're pushed into range, but generally this is an in-your-face build centred on aggression and agility. Get in there and try to commit the kind of splattery atrocities Jason Vorhees would be impressed by, and in the more open team matches of the Colosseum, pick one enemy and focus on them until they go down.

Glintstone PVP Build

Many feel that sorcery passes incantations if you're looking for the Elden Ring best spells - true or not, Sorcery is absolutely powerful if applied right, and makes up the core of one of the best Elden Ring builds currently in the meta.

  • Primary Stats: Intelligence, Vigor
  • Secondary Stats: Mind, Endurance
  • Weapons/Equipment: Misericorde (Bloodhound's Step Art and Magic Affinity), Lusat's Glintstone Staff
  • Armor: Spellblade's Pointed Hat (and general light/medium armor build)
  • Talismans: Radagon Icon, Graven-Mass Talisman
  • Spells: Swift Glintstone Shard, Magic Glintblade, Cannon of Haima, Comet, Star Shower, Carian Slicer, Carian Piercer, Carian Phalanx

This one is pretty focused on Glintstone Sorceries, as they're effectively versatile and cast quickly - an important thing in the frenetic chaos of PVP, as you'll rarely have time to charge bigger spells. Stay at range if you can, otherwise use spells like your Carian Spells if somebody gets too close, then the Misericorde for a quick slice-and-run with the Bloodhound's Step. Once you're back at a distance, you can start slinging the bigger spells again.

Heavy Greatsword Strength PVP Build

For those who want to crush foes into the ground, that can be done - though you'll need to be careful about how you apply Strength, as the big smashing weapons tend to be slow and easily avoided. Still, if you can land a hit, you'll do huge damage - and you set that up with the following build.

  • Primary Stats: Strength
  • Secondary Stats: Vigor, Endurance
  • Weapons/Equipment: Dual-wield Heavy Greatswords (both with Royal Knight's Resolve Ash of War), Clawmark Seal
  • Armor: Bull-Goat Armor (or any set with high poise)
  • Talismans: Radagon's Soreseal, Bull-Goat's Talisman
  • Spells: Flame, Grant Me Strength, Golden Vow

This one is best if you can set up the high-damage strike to follow - trigger Royal Knight's Resolve, the most important element, and any buff spells you can get out before combat starts. Then it's about picking your moment for a massive two handed strike - we suggest a jumping heavy attack. Leap into the air and come down with the kind of force that even Radahn would be proud of. There'll be little that can survive you.

Death Blight PVP Build

Death Blight is a lesser-used status effect that simply… kills the target. Once the bar is filled they drop, so while not much inflicts it, it's definitely deadly when used right. One of the more powerful builds and lesser-tried builds out there right now is definitely putting it to use, and uses a combination of Intelligence and Faith.

  • Primary Stats: Intelligence, Faith, Vigor
  • Secondary Stats: Mind, Dexterity
  • Weapons/Equipment: Eclipse Shotel, Prince of Death's Staff, Golden Order Seal
  • Armor: To taste, we recommend light armor for speed and distance
  • Talismans: Graven-Mass Talisman
  • Spells: Fia's Mist, Death Lightning, Ancient Death Rancor, Explosive Ghostflame, Tibia's Summons, Eternal Darkness, general Incantation buffs

This is a build with close and long range options, though you'll have to throw down a couple of buffs first before you risk getting into melee, and maybe drink your Physick Flask too, depending on what's in it. Either way, it's Fia's Mist, Death Lightning and the "Death Flare" power on your Shotel that'll all inflict the Death Blight on enemies, while your other spells are there to generally hound them and make it easier to land.

Of course, we'll be sure to update this page as more information comes out about the updated meta, especially considering that players can now fight 3v3 in the Colosseum. Or if you want some more general advice without going as specific as builds, we've listed all the best Elden Ring weapons at our page here! 

Joel Franey
Guides Writer

Joel Franey is a writer, journalist, podcaster and raconteur with a Masters from Sussex University, none of which has actually equipped him for anything in real life. As a result he chooses to spend most of his time playing video games, reading old books and ingesting chemically-risky levels of caffeine. He is a firm believer that the vast majority of games would be improved by adding a grappling hook, and if they already have one, they should probably add another just to be safe. You can find old work of his at USgamer, Gfinity, Eurogamer and more besides.