Resistance primarily increases physical defense, fire defense, and poison resist.
- Putting points in Resistance does not increase additional Magic or Lightning resistances beyond the standard increases granted for any level increase.
- The consensus among Dark Souls players is that it is a waste of souls to level up this stat, as doing so doesn't provide enough benefits. If the player wants to mitigate damage, better alternatives would be to invest in Vitality (to increase Hit Points), or Endurance (to wear heavier, more protective armor while keeping dodge speed). Poison and Fire Defense can be more practically increased by wearing armor that is high in those values.
- The root cause of Resistance's underwhelming utility is that defenses are also affected by your total level, not just Resistance, and the diminishing returns from both will stack, causing Resistance's effectiveness at higher levels to become negligible. While Poison resistance does not suffer from this double diminishing return effect, it is still more practical to equip gear with higher poison resists, as you will see the effects immediately.
- Resistance is not factored into Soul Level for starting classes. Furthermore, starting with high resistance will not be detrimental towards creating an optimized build. This is the reason why the max level (99 points in all stats) for a class like the Wanderer with 12 resistance is 709, whereas the max level for the Sorcerer with 8 resistance is 713.