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The Best Arrows and Bolts in Elden Ring, Ranked

Last updated by Gibson Ross  on Nov 16, 2023

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If you’ve ever played a decent amount of Elden Ring, you’ll likely know that there is a LOT of content in the game. From the high amount of bosses to the many explorable locations, to the vast amounts of ways you can build your character, there is seemingly no end in sight of new things to try and do.

One such thing that I didn’t delve into until after finishing my first play-through was arrows and bolts. There is a very large number of different ammo types in the game, and many of them can make or break your build. That’s why in this article, we’ll be going over and ranking the BEST arrows and bolts in Elden Ring.

Arrows & Bolts Overview

Before we get into the meat and potatoes of this article, let’s first go over some basics about how arrows and bolts work in Elden Ring. Firstly, there are a total of four different types of ammunition in the game. There are arrows, greatarrows, bolts, and greatbolts. Certain ammunition types cannot be used by certain weapons. For example, ballistia bolts can only be used by baristas and the jar cannon.

There is a huge amount of arrows and bolts in the game, more than are listed here in this article. Many of these different arrows and bolts will apply special status effects to enemies. For instance, there are poison arrows. These will fill up a meter on the enemy. When filled up, it will cause them to be afflicted with the poison status effect.

If you are doing a ranged build, I highly recommend that you keep multiple different arrows/bolts with you at all times. This will give you more versatility, giving you more options with how you want to deal with the enemies in the game.

Next up, I’ve ranked the top arrows and bolts in Elden Ring from good to great.

#11 Golem’s Great Arrow

Golem’s Great Arrows are a powerful arrow that will do 105 points of physical damage. These arrows are really fantastic at breaking an enemy’s stance. This is due to the fact that once they land, they will push out a big gust of air, throwing off certain enemies. I recommend you use these when going against enemies with high defenses.

Screenshot from the FromSoftware game Elden Ring. The screenshot shows a location marked on the in-game map showing where players need to go to get a certain arrow or bolt.
Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

These arrows cannot be crafted from any materials or purchased from any merchants in the game. The only way to obtain these arrows is by looting them off of the corpses of golems. They are ONLY dropped by the ones that weld great bows, however. You can click here to watch a short farming tutorial made by YouTuber WinterWalken.

#10 Radahn’s Spear

Next is Radahn’s Spear, a unique great arrow that was invented by General Radahn. This is a strong arrow type with a very high projectile speed. It’s an ideal ammo type for just about any enemy in the game. Just keep in mind that it can only be used on great bows, not normal bows.

Screenshot from the FromSoftware game Elden Ring. The screenshot shows a location marked on the in-game map showing where players need to go to get a certain arrow or bolt.
Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

To get this arrow, you first need to defeat the boss Starscourge Radahn. Once you do so, you can then travel to the Roundtable Hold. There should be an NPC merchant named Enia. She is one of the finger maidens, so you can’t miss her. Talk to her and you should be able to purchase some of the Radahn’s Spears.

#9 Dwelling Arrow

Dwelling Arrows are a magic-damage dealing arrow, one of the few that does that damage type in the game. These do small amounts of physical damage, but 95 points of magic damage. This is a really good arrow type to get a hold of, as there are many enemies in the game that are weak to magic damage. Having some of these on hand is very handy if you want to deal lots of this damage type.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

They can be farmed relatively easily by heading to the Siofra River, an underground region full of Ancestral Followers. These enemies can be killed for a chance at dropping this arrow type. Alternatively, if you don’t want to grind for these arrows, you can simply purchase them from a merchant found in the Mohgwyn Dynasty Mausoleum. Keep in mind you can’t get to this location until the later parts of the game.

#8 Ballista Bolt

The Ballista Bolt is a simple, but really powerful type of bolt that can be used to deal lots of physical damage to enemies. It does not have any special effects or properties but does make for an ideal “standard” ammo type that you can use effectively for most encounters in the game. It is used best with the Hand Ballistia, a special strength-based weapon that you can find in the Weeping Peninsula early on in your playthrough.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

You can easily purchase lots of these arrows from several different merchants in the game. The merchant that I recommend you buy them from is the one who lives in the Hermit Merchant’s Shack, which is located to the north of the capital city. This merchant is relatively easy to get to, and he will sell you a limitless amount of arrows, unlike some of the other merchants which only sell you a small amount.

#7 Lightning Greatbolt

Lightning Greatbolts are the best arrow type for dealing lightning damage to enemies in Elden Ring. They can very quickly finish off enemies which are weak to this damage type. If you are making a build that is centered around dealing lightning damage, it’s a good idea to pick up a greatbow and some of these arrows to reinforce your build.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

To obtain lots of Lightning Greatbolts, the most straightforward method that I am aware of is to simply purchase them. There is a merchant near Stargazer’s Ruins (Mountaintop of The Giants) that will sell you these arrows.

#6 Fire Arrow

Fire Arrows are pretty self-explanatory. They are simple arrows that deal fire damage in addition to regular physical damage. Fire damage is pretty effective against many different types of enemies. Most biological enemies with little armor can be taken care of with ease using this ammo type. They are also pretty cheap, so I definitely recommend you grab some of them if you can.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

In the region of Caelid will be an NPC merchant (see the image above). You can purchase Fire Arrows from this NPC. Since he is found in Caelid, you can get to him pretty early on in the game, making this a very viable ammo type to use from the beginning of the game and onwards.

#5 Golden Great Arrow

Next on our list of the Best Arrows & Bolts in Elden Ring, Ranked, we have the Golden Great Arrow. These arrows deal a very high amount of holy damage, making them a great weapon for builds centered around that damage type. Additionally, these arrows have a special property that most arrows do not have. After being fired, they will buff you and your allies, increasing damage and reducing the amount of damage that you take!

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

If you want to get these arrows, my preferred way to get them is by buying them from the merchant found in the Hermit Merchant’s Shack. This is located in the Capital Outskirts, which is just north of the capital city.

#4 Burred Bolt

Burred Bolts are a special type of crossbow bolt that will cause a blood loss build-up on enemies. Once their blood loss meter has been filled, they will take a high amount of bonus damage. Bleed builds are incredibly popular and strong in Elden Ring, so this might be a good thing to implement into your bleed build if you are doing one. I only recommend you use this on high-health enemies, such as bosses. This is because that will allow you to take full advantage of the bolt’s special effects.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

The best way to get ahold of lots and lots of Burred Bolts is by buying them. currently, the only way you can buy them is by visiting a merchant inside of the Mohgwyn Dynasty Mausoleum. This is a pretty high-level area, so don’t expect to go there until the end of the game. It’s an underground legacy dungeon that you can only visit by going to the Consecrated Snowfield, in the Mountaintop of The Giants. There is a gateway teleporter you will need to find and interact with.

#3 Poisonbone Arrow

The Posionbone Arrow is an ammunition that will deal very low physical damage to enemies. It makes up for this with its special ability. When an enemy is hit with a Posionbone Arrow, it will build up the poison status effect meter. Once the meter is filled up, the enemy will be affected with poison. This will cause them to slowly take damage over time. This is a really useful strategy for dealing with targets that have high health, such as bosses and mini-bosses.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

The only way that you can obtain these arrows is by crafting them. They CANNOT be looted anywhere in the game and they cannot be purchased by any of the merchants either. To craft them, first you need to get 3 thin animal bones and one poison bloom. The animal bones can be found by killing wildlife such as deer and sheep. Poison blooms can be most easily found by killing Giant Miranda Sprouts. Lastly, you will need to have the crafting recipe unlocked by finding the Nomadic Warrior’s Cookbook (3).

#2 St. Trina’s Arrow

St. Trina’s Arrow is a special arrow type that does little physical damage. However, even with this low damage, it’s still one of the best arrow types in the entire game. This is because it can inflict a special status effect on enemies. that effect is called sleep. Once an enemy’s sleep meter has been filled up–which can be done by hitting them with this arrow–they will fall into a deep slumber. When in this state, they will be unable to move around at all, allowing you to easily kill them!

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Putting enemies to sleep is a really great way to deal with certain bosses, such as the Godskin Duo. If you want to get these arrows for yourself, you can either loot them or buy them. Currently, there is no way to craft these items in-game. The two best merchants to get them from are the Isolated Merchant and the Nomadic Merchant. They can be found in the Academy of Raya Lucaria and East Limgrave respectively.

#1 Explosive Greatbolt

The Explosive Greatbolt does MASSIVE damage. In fact, it deals out more damage than any other arrow or bolt in the entire game. This makes it a really strong arrow type that can be used to deal with most enemies, as well as most bosses. It does 50 physical damage, but 150 fire damage. There are some enemy types that are resistant to fire damage, so do keep that in mind.

Image: FromSoftware, Bandi Nameco via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

This ammo type cannot be crafted, only looted or purchased. The best way to get lots and lots of these greatbolts would be to purchase them from a merchant. You can buy them for exactly 800 runes from the merchant that is found on Mt. Gelmir.

 

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