In Elden Ring, spellcasters or the “nerdy” classes and builds have two options. The first is the more conventional and snobbier magic– sorceries, while the second is mighty thunder-wielding, dragon-transforming, fire-breathing wrath of god(s) called incantations. Magic is for stiffs with rotting robes, and you want to harness the full power of your much cooler and less smelly deity. So we’ll teach you how to use incantations in Elden Ring.
In this guide, we will be breaking down the steps to use incantations effectively in all gaming platforms and drawing on the wisdom shared online by experienced players. We’ll also detail certain intricacies and requisites for such an awe-inspiring method of spellcasting.
Incantations are not Sorceries
Before delving into the mechanics of using incantations, it’s essential to understand their significance in Elden Ring.
These spells have a strong distinction from the usual magic spells or sorceries, allowing you to summon supernatural entities, lightning, fire, and more to crush your enemies. They serve not only as offensive tools but can also bolster your defenses, making them a versatile choice for any character build.
In fact, incantations can be more flexible than magic spells since they also encompass buffs.
One distinguishing feature of incantations is that they rely on Faith, unlike sorceries, which use Intelligence. This characteristic means that incantations are particularly adept at restoring health and curing ailments while also offering a wide array of offensive options (usually in the form of fire or lightning).
How to Use Incantations
To wield incantations, you must collect Sacred Seals scattered throughout the game world. These are spellcaster weapons that are smaller, lighter, and deal little to no physical damage. They’re like holy books, so don’t even think about killing a giant or dragon by smacking them with a bible or something. However, that is also allowed in-game if you’re crazy enough.
Sacred Seals are practically conduits between you and the gods. You use them to cast the incantations.
Find a Sacred Seal First
Just as a staff is essential for sorceries, a Sacred Seal is your catalyst for incantations. These seals come in various types, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. You can purchase some from vendors, while others can be acquired by defeating enemies or exploring the game world.
However, if you wish to start with a Sacred Seal, consider choosing the Prophet or Confessor starting classes; they come equipped with a starter Sacred Seal. Otherwise, hunt for seals as you progress through the game. Different seals offer unique advantages, and selecting the right one for your build is essential.
You can experiment with different Sacred Seals and incantation spells to match your character’s playstyle, whether it’s unleashing a relentless offensive barrage, enhancing your healing abilities, or bolstering your defenses.
Make Sure You Have Enough Faith
The strength of your incantations hinges on your character’s Faith stat. The higher your Faith, the more powerful your spells become. To maximize your spellcasting potential, make it your goal to reach a Faith stat level of at least 50 or 60—gradually as you progress in the game.
This threshold ensures that all your incantations deliver near-maximum damage to your enemies and bosses (assuming you’re using offensive incantations). While other stats are important, prioritizing Faith is the key to devastating spells.
Additionally, the Mind stat plays a crucial role in your incantation usage. A high Mind stat prevents frequent FP (basically mana) depletion and reduces reliance on the Cerulean flask. Aim to level up Mind to at least 40 to be at a comfortable level of FP. This interaction is simple enough; more FP means more capacity for spellcasting.
Collect Incantations and Equip Them in the Sites of Grace
To use an incantation, it must be in your inventory; think of them as spell knowledge.
You can acquire incantations in several ways, including purchasing them from NPCs like:
- Brother Corhyn
- D, Hunter of the Dead
- Miriel Pastor of Vows
Or you can just find them in Prayerbooks hidden throughout the world. Some dragon incantations require you to defeat the many dragons scattered throughout the Lands Between in Elden Ring. Each dragon can grant different powers in the Dragon Communion Church.
Exploration often reveals hidden locations and side areas with incantations guarded by formidable foes. Defeat these enemies to claim your rewards. As each incantation has distinct effects and casting costs, select the ones that align with your playstyle.
Increase Your Memory Slots
With your incantations collected, you need to equip them by adding them to your memory slots. Memory slots are different from FP. Think of memory slots as a limited repository of spells you’ve memorized and have prepared for use in combat.
Memory Stones, scattered across the lone rise towers in the Elden Ring game world, can increase your memory slots. Each Stone creates space for one spell, so strive to collect as many as possible to expand your spellcasting repertoire.
Equip the Sacred Seal and Cast Your Incantations
Once you’ve collected your Sacred Seal, equipped your incantations, and ensured you have enough memory slots and FP, you’re ready to cast spells.
Having your Sacred Seal equipped allows you to cast your currently memorized spell. To use the incantation, select it from your heads-up display (bottom left) and press the attack button. Be aware that some spells have casting times, making it essential to time your incantations correctly to avoid vulnerability.
Using incantations consumes FP (Focus Points), which you can replenish by resting at any Site of Grace or by using Cerulean flasks. During boss fights, it’s crucial to rely on your Flask of Cerulean Tears to maintain your FP levels.
The Compromises of Committing to Incantations
Mastering incantations in Elden Ring is the key to unlocking their full potential in battle. With powerful spells at your disposal, it’s essential to align your character’s stats with your desired playstyle. However, do keep in mind that if you focus solely on using incantations for combat, you’ll be limiting your character’s tankiness, so to speak.
That’s because, like sorceries, incantations are FP intensive, meaning you’ll need to allot more points into the Mind stat, which means you might be sacrificing some points that melee or physical damage classes or builds would be allotting in Endurance.
Essentially, less Endurance means you can’t wear heavier armor and have less stamina for dodging or blocking with shields.
Still, that’s a small price to pay for being able to turn into half a dragon and hurling the fury of the gods at your maidenless enemies using nothing but prayers.