The best weapons will only take you so far in Elden Ring. You also have to consider boosting your defenses by equipping the best shields available in the game.
Shields are not, however, mandatory in Elden Ring. It all depends on what kind of character you are leveling up and what kind of build you are going for.
To make your life easier, we picked the best shields from all categories by comparing the stats along with their pros and cons. You can read this guide below to find the best shields to use in Elden Ring.
How shields work in Elden Ring
Shields can function differently depending on how you want to use them. You can use Shields for blocking as well as parrying and some even for attacking!
There are some other factors as well that play a huge role while picking up a Shield. These factors are your playstyle, shield weight, stat requirement, guard boost, and damage reduction.
Generally, Light Shields are used for parrying, Medium Shields are used for blocking with great stability while the Greatshields are used for blocking but with less stability than the Medium Shields due to their heavy weights.
Best shields to use in Elden Ring
Haligtree Crest Greatshield (best shield against Holy damage)
If you want to prevent Holy Damage, Haligtree Crest Greatshield is the only name that comes to mind. Similarly, comparing the Holy Damage prevention numbers, Haligtree Crest can reach up to 98.75 when fully maxed up.
That said, the number mentioned above for Holy Damage Prevention is not reached alone and requires players to infuse Haligtree Crest with Sanctified Affinity.
Since Haligtree Crest Greatshield scales with Strength, enhancing this attribute will increase its protection. The best application for Haligtree Crest will be the tough boss with a high damage output that is difficult to avoid.
Keep in mind that all this protection of Haligtree Crest Greatshield comes with a cost which is that it increases the overall weight. This means that ultimately your mobility will be reduced.
Scripture Wooden Shield (best shield for mages)
Scripture Wooden Shield is one of the lightest and fastest shield in Elden Ring with a weight of 1.5 and is excellent for parrying attacks but it is quite weak.
For all the mages in Elden Ring, they have to invest the majority of the stats in Intelligence and Mind. This leaves no room for the mages to invest in stamina which is required for using most of the heavy shields.
This is when Scripture Wooden Shield comes into the picture as this shield is light enough to be used with little to no Stamina. This means you can enjoy the defense abilities of Scripture Wooden Shield while being a mage.
In terms of blocking enemy attacks, these light shields provide little to no protection. Meanwhile, due to his light weightlessness, it becomes perfect for players that want agility for quick attacks.
The protection part of Scripture Wooden Shield comes in the form of parrying enemy attacks. With this, you can deflect melee attacks for even the most difficult enemies like Malenia Blade of Miquella.
Beast Crest Heater Shield (best early-game shield)
Beast Crest Heater Shield is a Medium Shield that improves Strength and weighs 3.5 to be exact. This shield provides a balance between defense and weight. By using Ashes of War, you can make Beast Crest Heater Shield even better by enhancing its abilities.
As far as the early game goes, Beast Crest Heater Shield is one of the best options available in the Limgrave region. You will however find it in a chest protected by Beast Crest Heater Knight located in Deathtouched Catacombs.
The basic skill of Beast Crest Shield is parrying which can be used to prevent all the melee attacks of enemies. This shield also gives you decent damage prevention and blocking compared to a small shield.
Carian Knight’s Shield (best shield for Carian Retaliation)
Carian Knight’s Shield is a Medium shield that weighs 4.5 and improves with Intelligence, Strength, and Dexterity. It also provides a balance between weight and defense.
Since Carian Knight’s Shield is a Medium shield, it can be best paired with Carian Retaliation Ash of War. To get the most out of Carian Knight’s Shield in terms of damage, you need to upgrade it with Smithing Stones.
Stamina is the only attribute that the players will come short of in the middle of difficult fights. This is because nearly all of the shields will consume stamina for every enemy attack blocked.
Thanks to Guard Boost, Carian Knight’s Shield is not stamina hungry, therefore, you will get through the fights with even less stamina. Guard Boost also gives you magic as your secondary.
Talking of magic, Carian Knight’s Shield can be infused with magic which will reduce damage from all the magic attacks. Doing so will reduce the damage reduction from all the physical attacks.
Shield Of The Guilty (best small shield)
Out of the box, there is not much to expect from Small Shields in terms of reducing attack damage. But with Shield of The Guilty, you will get maximum damage prevention with 68 points in Guard Protection.
As far as stamina consumption goes, Shield of The Guilty is a light shield that does not consume much. Another advantage of small shields is that they are light, giving you the agility to dodge and parry quicker than ever.
What makes the Shield Of The Guilty the best small shield is its ability to stagger enemies using the skill shield Bash. Shield Of The Guilty can be found inside the Demi-Human Forest Ruins located in Weeping Peninsula.
Brass Shield (best medium shield)
Brass Shield is one of the best Medium Shields that you will find in Elden Ring as it has the best overall Damage Negation Stats. As far as stats go, Brass Shield has 56 Guard Boost giving you 100% Physical Damage prevention.
The damage prevention abilities of Brass Shield are not only limited to physical attacks but it also prevents 50% damage from all the other types of attacks.
The only disadvantage of Brass Shield is that it does not prevent damage from lightning attacks. But you don’t need to worry too much about lightning attacks as this is only encountered very late in the game.
You can get Brass Shield from Godrick Soldiers and Raya Lucaria Soldiers.
Erdtree Greatshield (best heavy shield)
Erdtree Shield is one of the best heavy shields that you can find in Elden Ring as it improves with Strength and Faith while negating most of the physical damage. Instead of using FP, Erdtree is Stamina based.
With Greatshields, you will get extra damage prevention with the cost of reduced mobility due to increased weight. Golden Retaliation is the active skill of Erdtree Greatshield which allows players to bash enemies with sorceries and incantation.
Getting your hands on Erdtree Greatshield is rather difficult because of the fight with Tree Sentinal. You can get Erdtree Greatshield from the two Tree Sentinels protecting the Outer Wall Phantom Tree.