Starting Classes

There are 10 different starting classes in Dark Souls. dark-souls-2.jpeg

The starting classes determine what weapons, clothing, items and spells the player starts out with. This makes each class' play style unique in the beginning, although as the game progresses the player can adapt to any other gear and style and the starting class becomes significantly less important.

In addition to choosing a starting class, players can choose a gift to begin the game with. Gifts range from unique game items to consumables that are found in the game. If a Thief chooses the Master Key gift, it will begin the game with two, but since one is enough you should never choose the Master Key as a thief.

The starting level of the characters affect how easy it is to level up (the lower the level the easier) at the beginning of the game. The level of a character ignores the Resistance stat, so characters with high resistance start at lower levels.


Warrior Knight Wanderer Thief Bandit Hunter Sorcerer Pyromancer Cleric Deprived


Warrior

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:22 pm
Class_Warrior.jpgFearless Warrior.
Weapon expert.
High strength, dexterity.

Starting Gear: Longsword, Heater Shield, Standard Helm, Hard Leather Armor, Hard Leather Gauntlets, Hard Leather Boots



Description:
The Warrior is a good all-round choice due to the character’s combination of high Strength and Dexterity, allowing them to make use of most early game equipment that they come across. This class has very limited access to Magic and Miracles in the beginning of the game, mostly due to low stats in Intelligence, Attunement, and Faith. However, with a few points in each, a Warrior can start using basic spells and miracles very quickly. The warrior's stats allow for otherwise high level weapons and armor to be used very early on in the game. For example, a warrior can equip and use weapons such as the: Drake Sword, Zweihander, Gravelord Sword, Black Knight Sword and the Black Knight shield with a few level ups invested into strength. A Warrior’s starting equipment is excellent for a variety of combat styles, as the long sword allows for a solid chain of attacks that deal consistent amounts of damage and the heater shield allows the Warrior to block 100% of physical damage right from the start of the game. The strength of the warriors armor and gear allows a careful player to confidently engage in combat with enemies that are of a higher level e.g. Black Knights without the fear of dying a horrible death making it a good choice for new players that want to enjoy the experience of this game.

Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
4
11
8
12
13
13
11
9
9
0
86

Knight

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:26 pm
Class_Knight.jpgLow-ranking Knight.
High HP, solid armor.
Not easily toppled.

Starting Gear: Broadsword, Tower Kite Shield, Knight Helm, Knight Armor, Knight Gauntlets, Knight Leggings


knight.jpg
Knight in starting equipment.

Description:
The Knight is a tank class, starting with the highest Vitality and defense values of all classes,
as well as the most robust equipment. This does mean that Knights move slowly, so you will need to fight carefully and expect to take some hits. Most weapons are easily equipped by a Knight, and their Faith stat is high enough to use Miracles for healing with minor investment, but you'll need to learn the miracle and acquire a talisman first. Also a very easy class for new players as its high HP and strong armor help you survive even if you make mistakes. The reference in the character generation screen to Knights being "not easily toppled" is an apparent reference to the relatively high combined Poise of the Knight's starting armor, which makes the Knight better able to continue taking action when struck by an enemy, rather than become stunned. It does not reflect any innate ability to resist being knocked down compared to any other starting Class. Knight starts with a shield that allows to block 100% of physical damage right from the start of the game.

NOTE: This class starts with Covenant of the White and the Prayer gesture.
external image 8S606738.png
Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
5
14
10
10
11
11
10
9
11
0
86

Wanderer

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:27 pm
Class_Wanderer.jpgAimless wanderer.
Wields scimitar.
High dexterity.

wanderer.jpg
Wanderer in starting equipment.

Starting Gear: Scimitar, Leather Shield, Wanderer Hood, Wanderer Coat, Wanderer Manchette, Wanderer Boots



Description:
Wanderers are another good all-round Class, but with a focus on speed and evading, rather than high defense. Their Vitality is relatively low, and their armor is also nothing to write home about, so they can't take many hits. The Scimitar is a very useful starting weapon due to the class’s high Dexterity and the weapon's high attack speed. You'll want to use fast combos to take out enemies before they can attack. You will also have the option to fight at range with spells as all you need is a wand and a trainer, thanks to the decent Attunement and Intelligence stats. The high Dexterity also makes this class able to use bows after you acquire them. A intermediate class that relies on speed and evasion to survive requiring a certain level of skill from the player.

Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
3
10
11
10
10
14
12
11
8
0
86

Thief

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:29 pm
Class_Thief.jpgGuilt-ridden thief with quiet footsteps.
High dexterity.
Has Master Key by default.

thief.jpg
Thief in starting equipment.

Starting Gear: Bandit's Knife, Target Shield, Master Key, Thief Mask, Black Leather Armor, Black Leather Gloves, Black Leather Boots


Description:
The high critical bonus of the Bandit's Knife the thief wields makes his back stabs and ripostes very deadly and their main source of damage versus strong foes. The target shield is very weak when blocking and instead more suited to parrying, which is an acquired skill that must be practiced. Thieves aren't a resilient class due to light armor, very low Vitality and a weak shield, but have high mobility. The attack speed of the Bandit's Knife makes it a solid one on one weapon, but the lack of range and swing arc make the thief weak when facing multiple opponents. They can wield bows early but most swords will only be usable dual handed due to the low Strength. Decent levels in Attunement, Intelligence and Faith means easy access to both spells and miracles after you acquire the necessary catalysts and trainers. They also come with the Master Key by default, which allows them and access many locked doors much easier than other Classes that would be forced to take the key as a gift to have the same benefit. This means the Thief can effectively start the game with two Gifts by choosing something besides the Master Key during character creation; selecting Black Firebombs for example makes it very easy to kill the Asylum Demon during the first confrontation in the Asylum. This class's fragile constitution and low range make it a difficult class for beginners, as even small mistakes can cause the thief's demise. Experienced players, however, will enjoy the high damaging back stabs that will enable the thief to deal with enemies stronger than them in a one on one battle. The reference to "quiet footsteps" in the Thief's official description during character generation is, similar to the Knight, an apparent reference to its lighter starting equipment, which makes the Thief quieter than a player in heavier armor. The Thief is not inherently more quiet than any other player if both are using identical armor.

Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
5
9
11
9
9
15
10
12
11
0
86

Bandit

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:30 pm
Class_Bandit.jpgSavage bandit.
High strength.
Wields heavy battleaxe.

Starting Gear: Battle Axe, Spider Shield, Brigand Hood, Brigand Armor, Brigand Gauntlets, Brigand Trousers


bandit.jpg
Bandit in starting equipment.

Description:
The Bandit specializes in hard-hitting physical attacks, and is great with weapons such as axes and straight swords. The starting battle axe is great for the game’s early areas, where dealing with enemies using as few hits as possible is important. Their high Endurance and Strength will mean that of all classes they deal the most melee damage at the beginning of the game. The Bandit’s magic stats are poor, so magic will require some investment before it can be used. Miracles do come by easier but still require an investment. Their starting Armor isn't that great, but you will have no trouble dodging or equipping better Armor as you find those. Bandit starts with a shield that allows to block 100% of physical damage right from the start of the game. This class is suitable to both experienced players and beginners, with decent defense and a very strong offence. If you want pure melee combat with an emphasis on offence look no further, the bandit is for you.

Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
4
12
8
14
14
9
11
8
10
0
86

Hunter


Class_Hunter.jpgBow-wielding hunter.
Can handle close range
but vulnerable to magic.
hunter.jpg
Hunter snipes undead with the bow.


Starting Gear: Shortsword, Short Bow, Large Leather Shield, Standard Arrow x30, Leather Armor, Leather Gloves, Leather Boots


Description:
Hunters are a complete mix of combat styles. This means hunters have no specialty of their own and rely instead on exploiting their enemy's weaknesses. Starting access to a bow and respectable Strength allow this class to equip almost any early weapon, especially weapons that favor Dexterity. Their light armor load means they can evade well, so using quick weapons to strike and retreat is a good idea. Using magic will require some investment, but it is accessible. You should only use the bow to weaken strong enemies before engaging them in melee or to pick enemies from a group without having to fight all at the same time. Be mindful of the number of arrows as until you meet a merchant you won't have a way to restock. Light armor and normal HP make this a rather fragile class, but with good mobility and a great versatility there should be little the hunter can't take on early. A good class for intermediate players that enjoy multiple play styles that don't rely on magic. Similar to the Knight and the Thief, the official character description's reference to being "vulnerable to magic" appears to be a reference to the Hunter's initial gear, and does not reflect any innate weakness to magic compared to other characters.

Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
4
11
9
11
12
14
11
9
9
0
86

Sorcerer

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:35 pm
Class_Sorcerer.jpgSorcerer of Vinheim.
Dragon school.
Casts soul sorceries.

Starting Gear: Dagger, Small Leather Shield, Sorcerer's Catalyst, Sorcerer Hat, Sorcerer Cloak, Sorcerer Gauntlets, Sorcerer Boots
sorcerer.jpg
Sorcerer in starting equipment.

Starting Spells: Soul Arrow

Description:
If you want to use magic as your primary offensive tool, then the Sorcerer is the best class to begin with. The Soul Arrow will be your primary source of damage early in the game, and with 30 rechargeable uses you can use it even on weaker enemies unlike the hunters bow. Their high Attunement and Intelligence makes learning more sorcery and pyromancy very easy. Using physical weapons will be a struggle, however, so at first you’ll be limited to your Dagger and other light weapons. This can provide you with a fallback at times when enemies are resistant to your magic or all your uses are gone. A single point in Attunement will increase your magic slots to 4. If you make good use of bonfires to restock on the spells this class shouldn't have much trouble with early enemies. Very low Vitality and light armor make the sorcerer very fragile and prone to death in ambushes where his soul arrow is rendered almost useless. If ambushed by multiple foes, your best course of action is to make use of your good speed to retreat and gain time to cast your spells. This class is suited for intermediate or experienced players that favor magic. Beginners looking for magic should try the Pyromancer instead.


Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
3
8
15
8
9
11
8
15
8
0
82

Pyromancer

Updated Dec 22, 2014 5:36 pm
Class_Pyromancer.jpgGreat Swamp pyromancer.
Casts fire spells.
Wields a hand axe.

pyromancer.jpg
Pyromancer in starting equipment.

Starting Gear: Hand Axe, Cracked Round Shield, Pyromancy Flame, Tattered Cloth Hood, Tattered Cloth Robe, Tattered Cloth Manchette, Heavy Boots
Starting Spells: Fireball

Description:
The Pyromancer is a popular Class for both beginners and experienced players. Combining powerful fire magic with decent melee weapon ability, the Pyromancer has good offensive options from the start, and also begins with two spell slots. As the only Class that starts at Level 1, you can level up early at lower cost and have a bit more flexibility about the direction of your build when aiming for a particular level character. The Hand Axe is also a decent starting weapon, with a good mixture of damage output and attack speed that is very effective in the early areas of the game, and if upgraded can remain viable throughout the game. You should aim to use melee attacks to deal with weak enemies and save your low use fireball when facing groups of enemies or stronger foes. The Fireball allows you to take down some powerful enemies early on much easier than other Classes. Low Vitality and light armor do make this class fragile. The Pyromancer is a good choice for all players due to the high damaging capabilities, lack of strong weakness and the low cost of the first levels. Just be careful of ambushes and your low HP. Pyromancer starting equipment has very good poison resistance and is more valuable and effective than its appearance or titles would suggest.
*Note: The Pyromancer Flame ("Pyro Glove") eventually gets intelligence scaling, but that scaling DOES NOT affect spell damage. The Int scaling you receive only affects the damage you do while using the Pyromancer Flame as a melee weapon. Intelligence is NOT a required stat for pyromancy, and there is virtually no benefit to adding points in Intelligence unless you plan on using Sorcery spells.
Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
1
10
12
11
12
9
12
10
8
0
84

Cleric


Class_Cleric.jpgCleric on pilgrimage.
Wields a mace.
Casts healing miracles.

cleric.jpg
Cleric in starting equipment.

Starting Gear: Mace, East-West Shield, Canvas Talisman, Holy Robe, Traveling Gloves, Holy Trousers
Starting Spells: Heal

Description:
Clerics can use Miracles to heal from the start, thanks to their high starting Faith stat and equipped Talisman. Their other stats are fairly balanced, so you’ll have plenty of freedom in weapon selection after a few level ups. The low Dexterity does hamper this a little, but you can use weapons such as Maces and Hammers to get around this or invest a little in Dexterity. The Cleric's starting Heal miracle allows them to explore further than other classes that rely on Estus Flasks only, and saves them a significant amount of souls at low level (the miracle otherwise costs 4000 souls to obtain). Aim to use the Heal miracle outside battle, and use the Estus Flasks in battle when necessary, because the Heal miracle is slow to activate and leaves you open to attack. Their light armor and defense means that can't take as many hits as a knight, and no Heal miracle will help you when your HP reaches 0. Don't be to afraid to use Estus Flasks in battle to avoid death, or escape the battle to use the miracle. The Cleric is a good class for beginners and intermediate players or those seeking a warrior that relies on Strength and Faith, as it starts at a low level which allows for greater customization, yet already has a good stat distribution focused on Strength and Faith (and with another spell slot available upon the investment of one more point in Attunement). With two levels invested into Dexterity you can wield the Astora's straight sword early on and blow through all enemies until you ring the first bell. It is highly recommended that you join the warriors of sunlight covenant for the strong offensive miracles early on, or you could join the princess guard covenant to gain access to support miracles. (If your not willing to go covenant hopping to gain miracles this is not the class for you)

NOTE:This class starts with Covenant of the White and the Prayer gesture.
external image 8S606738.png
Level
Vitality
Attunement
Endurance
Strength
Dexterity
Resistance
Intelligence
Faith
Humanity
Total
2
11
11
9
12
8
11
8
14
0
84

Deprived