The Rivers of Blood katana is an extremely powerful weapon in Elden Ring, in no small part due to its ability to inflict blood loss and its Corpse Piler skill. Indeed, this weapon can be absolutely devastating, especially when it is supported by a complimentary build.
This guide is here to provide recommendations on how to build around the Rivers of Blood in Elden Ring, and it will help players get the most out of this unique katana.
Updated September 11, 2022 by Erik Petrovich: When aiming for a Rivers of Blood build in Elden Ring, there are a few things players ought to keep in mind. Finding the perfect stat allocation at Level 125 gives you room to match with more players in PvP, for example. For a Rivers of Blood katana build Elden Ring offers a ton of talismans, armor choices, and even side weapons that can make the difference between proccing Bleed on an enemy and not (as Rivers of Blood cannot be infused with Ashes of War). It’s a fickle build that requires specific pieces to work effectively, and knowing where to go and what each piece does can make the process putting together a powerful Rivers of Blood build much simpler.
Best Stats for Rivers of Blood
Arcane and Dexterity are the most important stats for getting damage out of Elden Ring‘s Rivers of Blood katana, and they should be prioritized. Players should also make sure that they have enough Vigor to withstand some significant blows and then pump their Mind and Endurance stats to facilitate barrages of attacks and using the FP-intensive Corpse Piler skill.
Above is an example of the proper stat allocation for a Level 125 Samurai using twin Rivers of Blood. This is only a suggestion, as part of Elden Ring‘s appeal is the ability to experiment as they see fit. If you find yourself hurting for more FP, Health, Stamina, or want to pair Rivers of Blood with Sorceries or Incantations, there’s nothing wrong with a little reallocation. Just keep Arcane and Dexterity high and keep Strength high enough to powerstance the weapon effectively.
Rivers of Blood Offhand Armament and Ash of War
It is recommended that players dual wield the Rivers of Blood katana alongside either the Uchigatana or Nagakiba, with the second of these two options requiring some additional points be put into Strength.
Furthermore, fans are advised to apply the Seppuku skill to their secondary weapon regardless of the sword that they ultimately select for that slot. Indeed, this setup makes characters extremely effective at inflicting blood loss upon a foe, which is a primary focus of this build.
- Uchigatana: Found in the Deathtouched Catacombs in Limgrave.
- Nagakiba: Obtained through Yura’s questline in Elden Ring.
- Seppuku Ash of War: Earned upon killing an invisible scarab just east of the Freezing Lake Site of Grace in the Mountaintops of the Giants.
Rivers of Blood Armor Sets and Talismans
The one armor piece that players using the Rivers of Blood katana should absolutely equip is the White Mask, as that helmet grants a 10% attack power increase for 20 seconds after blood loss has been inflicted. Fans that like to use jump attacks may also want to consider equipping the Raptor’s Black Feathers chest to strengthen those attacks by around 10%. The other two armor slots can be filled to the player’s preference, so long as they take care to avoid hitting a heavy equip load.
- White Mask: Dropped by an invader in the blood lake area of Elden Ring‘s Mohgwyn Palace. Cannot be obtained if Mohg, Lord of Blood has been killed.
- Raptor’s Black Feathers: In a chest past an illusory wall in Altus Plateau’s Sage’s Cave.
When it comes to Rivers of Blood talismans, there are three that work perfectly with the build, and a free slot to do with as you will. The Lord of Blood’s Exultation is the only critical Talisman for this build, as it grants a 20% attack boost when blood loss is inflicted nearby and stacks with the White Mask. Players should consider equipping the Rotten Winged Sword Insignia for bonus attack power with successive hits, and the Carian Filigreed Crest to lower the FP cost of skills (a.k.a. Corpse Piler) by 25%.
For the fourth Talisman slot, there are many suitable options. Both Erdtree’s Favor +2 or either Soreseal are worth considering if a player wants a more-general boost to their character, while the Claw Talisman may be better for those that like jump attacks and stacks with the Raptor’s Black Feathers. Fans may also want to think about the Godskin Swaddling Cloth or Taker’s Cameo, as those will bring a bit of healing to the build.
- Lord of Blood’s Exultation: Dropped by Esgar, Priest of Blood in Leyndell Catacombs beneath Elden Ring‘s Leyndell, Royal Capital.
- Rotten Winged Sword Insignia: Earned during Millicent’s questline in Elden Ring.
- Carian Filigreed Crest: Sold by War Counselor Iji during Blaidd’s questline in Elden Ring.
- Erdtree’s Favor +2: Found in the large courtyard in Leyndell after the city undergoes a major change.
- Radagon’s Soreseal: Looted from a corpse in Caelid’s Fort Faroth.
- Marika’s Soreseal: On an altar past a Stonesword Key barrier at the bottom of Elphael, Brace of the Haligtree.
- Godskin Swaddling Cloth: Obtained by defeating the bosses in the Mountaintops of the Giants’ Spiritcaller Cave.
- Taker’s Cameo: Awarded as part of the questline at Elden Ring‘s Volcano Manor.
Elden Ring is available now for PC, PlayStation 4 and 5, and Xbox One and Series X|S.