Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (2022)

In Elden Ring, players are called the Tarnished, but that doesn't mean they have to look the part. And while the game somewhat encourages that by mostly presenting players with Salvation Army duds, there are still numerous second-hand armor options that look great for melee characters. All of them help players achieve or become a part of the true endgame in Elden Ring: Elden Bling.

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It's where the most stylish and most glamorous of Tarnished gather which may or may not result in fight clubs or spiteful PVP but hey, at least look good while blaspheming or ganking others. The most imposing among them, for that matter, are armored melee dudes because magic is for snobs who wear Burger King helmets and oversized fedoras.

Updated April 28th, 2022, by Sid Natividad: The best armor in Elden Ring is usually up to people's subjective taste once they have gotten 'gud'. However, melee builds could always use a good balance of protection and style. Thus, we deem it necessary to update this Elden Ring best armor list to cater to more melee playstyles.

Because there are too many viable Elden Ring best armor sets. Some of them help players in performing more combat quirks such as stealth kills or jump attacks. Others add too much poise and make the players tanky. So make sure to consider some of these new additions for the best armor Elden Ring.

15/15 Tree Sentinel Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (1)
  • Worn by: Tree Sentinel boss
  • Location: Chariot puzzle in Auriza Heroes Grave
  • Main benefit: Well-rounded and stylish armor

Players get a glimpse of one of the best and most stylish heavy armor sets in the game as soon as they step into Limgrave. The Tree Sentinel actually has a good armor set but sadly, he doesn't drop it. Players will have to head over to Auriza Heroes Grave in Altus Plateau and destroy the Chariots in order to get this armor.

The effort is well-rewarded though since the Tree Sentinel armor has about the same defensive stats and poise as Radahn's Set. It's also bulky yet glamorous as it's also one of the few armor sets in the game that looks well-kept and maintained.

14/15 Raptor's Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (2)
  • Worn by: The assassin Ravenmount
  • Location: Behind an illusory Sage's Cave, gloves and boots are sold by Gatekeeper Gostoc
  • Main benefit: Jump attack damage boost from the body armor

The Raptor's set is a considerable upgrade from the default Bandit's set worn as starting armor by the Bandit class. It's more special, however, as the body armor, Raptor's Black Feathers, enhances the jump attack damage by a noticeable amount.

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Furthermore, this buff stacks with the Claw Talisman for an even bigger jump attack increase. So it's pretty much a build-enabling armor set, especially for those that use twinblades or dual greatswords (or heavier). The defensive stats are decent enough and the style is impeccable.

13/15 War Surgeon Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (3)
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  • Worn by: White Mask Varre
  • Location: Nameless White Mask NPC invaders in the Mohgwyn Dynasty Mausoleum, in the blood-filled lake
  • Main benefit: Mask gives Attack Rating boost triggered by nearby Blood Loss/Bleed

Ever wanted to have revenge against Varre's creepy, judgmental kind? Well, apart from killing them, one can also wear their clothing as some kind of trophy. It's not half-bad. The War Surgeon Set is dropped by the invaders in Mogwhyn Dynasty Mausoleum's bloody lake. They look like Varre.

The set itself is unimpressive when it comes to defense by the helmet or mask gives a good damage boost for Bleed builds. The mask gives a buff to Attack Rating once it detects a nearby Bleed proc. Players can even trigger this themselves using the Seppuku Ash of War.

12/15 Fire Prelate Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (4)
  • Worn by: Prelates
  • Location: Prelate in Guardian's Garrison in Mountaintop of the Giants, or dropped randomly by any Prelate enemy
  • Main benefit: High poise, highest Fire resistance

Those who wear the Fire Prelate set likely won't do so for style. It's more likely that the Fire Giant or some fire-breathing dragon is starting to get on their nerves. Because this armor set is a desperate countermeasure against fire damage.

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It boasts the highest fire resistance in the game and the difference compared to other sets is significant, meaning the fire damage mitigation is a lifesaver here. Apart from that, the poise is one of the highest in the game.

11/15 Malformed Dragon Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (5)
  • Worn by: Draconic Tree Sentinel
  • Location: Draconic Tree Sentinel in Crumbling Farum Azula
  • Main benefit: Second-highest lightning resistance in the game

Apart from fire, lightning is another damage source that's frequently dealt by dragons, especially in late-game. Enemies in Crumbling Farum Azula also love to use lightning against the players. So in order to counteract these cretins, the Malformed Dragon Set is the second-best option.

The best is actually the Bull-Goat set, but that thing weighs a ton and the lightning mitigation isn't that much higher. The downside, of course, is that it looks like a misshapen dragon egg so like the Fire Prelate set, this is also another desperate but effective attempt to survive certain bosses.

10/15 Black Knife Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (6)
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  • Worn by: Black Knife Assassins
  • Location: Ordina, Liturgical Town in Consecrated Grounds
  • Main benefit: Muffled movement

It's not the best armor set for defending oneself, but it excels in one thing: making assassin-type builds stabbier. Because the Black Knife armor piece has a passive effect that silences movement sounds be it running or walking. This reduces the need for Dex-builds to sneak with caution.

It also presents many opportunities for players to assault enemy placements where they can always open up the combat by sneak-stabbing the toughest enemy. In PvP, the utility is less pronounced due to more vigilant players, but it still lets the wearer occasionally catch a poor bloke off-guard.

9/15 Blaidd's Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (7)
  • Worn by: Blaidd, of course
  • Location: Drops after fighting Blaidd in Ranni's Rise
  • Main benefit: Balanced stats, Berserk cosplay

Dark Souls games and Elden Ring owes a significant amount of their atmosphere to Kentaro Miura's Berserk, so it's only fitting to have a proper homage. That came in the form of Blaidd himself and his armor set which looks surprisingly close to Guts' Berserker armor.

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Blaidd's set might disappoint those who crave for more poise or meat-head stats as the armor is quite light and only has medium defense values. Still, think of that as more allowance for Colossal weapons especially since this armor is best paired with a greatsword.

8/15 Royal Remains Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (8)
  • Worn by: Ensha, the local edgelord
  • Location: Roundtable Hold
  • Main benefit: HP regeneration

Drinking HP Flasks in the middle of combat is often attributed to some unfortunate deaths both in boss fights and invasions. A player might need every edge he can get in order to avoid that and to squeeze in some advantage and speaking of edge, there's nothing sharper than the Royal Remains Set. The armor piece gives consistent but slow HP regeneration when worn.

It's Ensha's armor which he broodingly flaunts like a cool teenager outside of Gideon Ofnir's room. Players can get this one automatically since sooner or later in their playthroughs, they'll happen upon a hostile Ensha in Roundtable Hold. Turns out he wasn't so cool, after all.

7/15 Hoslow's Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (9)
  • Worn by: Juno Hoslow
  • Location: Volcano Manor's final contract in Mountaintops of the Giants
  • Main benefit: Balanced stats, peak Elden Bling

We have to be honest with the players, the most defense-heavy armor sets in the game look like wart clusters covered in chrome or brass. So for those who want maximum style points and to die beautiful deaths, then the medium-heavy armor class gives that best balance. And the best armor in this category is Hoslow's Set.

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Players have already seen it before worn by the uptight and pompous Hoslow. Turns out he has a brother who has the complete armor set along with the helmet. It's arguably the most gorgeous armor design in the game and the best part is that it can be rare either because Juno Hoslow is a tough fight or because it's easy to mess up the Volcano Manor quests.

6/15 Crucible Axe/Tree Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (10)
  • Worn by: Crucible Knights
  • Location: Crucible Knight Ordovis in Auriza Hero's Grave/Crucible Knight Siluria in Deeproot Depths
  • Main benefit: Incredible defense, low weight

It's not hard to covet the Crucible Knights' armor since they seemingly have infinite poise and even the very first Crucible Knight in the Stormhill Evergaol is tough as nails even in NG+. Luckily, players can obtain their armor through those locations above.

However, don't expect to have the same poise as these guys. The Crucible Set poise barely reaches 60. Even so, it's a great all-around armor set as it covers all bases from physical to elemental and even magic damage. As an added bonus, it's also stylish.

5/15 Scaled Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (11)
  • Worn by: Old Knight Istvan
  • Location: Volcano Manor's first contract in Stormhill
  • Main benefit: Incredible defense, low weight

The corroded and barnacle-infested look might not be for everyone, but the Scaled Set's defenses and weight, as well as poise make it one of the most well-rounded armor sets in the game. It can even be better than the Crucible Sets in some aspects of defense.

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The armor is also a good piece for Elden Bling mix-and-matching since the armor piece has a cape and has a default unobtrusive knight armor appearance. Replace the helmet with an altered Banished Knight headpiece and it looks even better.

4/15 Banished Knight Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (12)
  • Worn by: Banished Knights
  • Location: Drops from Banished Knights in Stormveil Castle in Limgrave, Castle Sol in Mountaintops of the Giants
  • Main benefit: Impressive defense, impeccable style

The Banished Knight armor set is a special one since it can be difficult to obtain and getting all the pieces is based on luck. It's also one of the few heavy armors in the game that doesn't look like a neglected cast iron pot.

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The armor also has two variants, both of which can be considered for the usual Elden Ring Elden Bling needs. The helmet comes with a lovely generous placement of plumes for the altered version or a hood for the original version. The best part is that no defense is sacrificed despite the style.

3/15 Radahn's Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (13)
  • Worn by: Starscourge Radahn
  • Location: Redmane Castle, Caelid
  • Main benefit: Great defense, great poise

General Radahn is supposedly the best warrior in Elden Ring and sure enough, his boss fight involves several great warriors ganging up on him since even Malenia couldn't bring him down. So no one expected his armor set to disappoint but even then, it still wowed many.

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Because for some players, Radahn's Set is quite possibly the most balanced out of all the armor. It gives 60 poise and a ton of damage mitigation. Compared to other heavy armor sets, Radahn's set is still relatively light.

2/15 Veteran Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (14)
  • Worn by: Commander Niall
  • Location: Castle Sol in Mountaintops of the Giants
  • Main benefit: Great defense, great poise

Tired of getting flinched by dogs and rats all the time? Then make sure to have a proper countermeasure in the form of the Veteran Set. It gives a whopping 70 poise if the set is worn full and has one of the greatest defense stats to boot.

The armor is bulky, of course, both in looks and in weight, but it's both a trophy and a defense boost since Niall can be a difficult boss due to his summons. In any case, one can't go wrong with Niall's armor. It has a cape and the gauntlets fit in well with other sets.

1/15 Bull-Goat Set

Elden Ring: 15 Best Armor Sets For Melee Builds (15)
  • Worn by: Great Horned Tragoth
  • Location: Patches' quest in Volcano Manor
  • Main benefit: Massive defense, massive poise

Want something heavier and heftier than even the Veteran Set but doesn't look ridiculous unlike Lionel's Set or at least looks somewhat decent compared to Dung-Eater's Set? Then the Bull-Goat Set is the best choice in that regard.

Again, it's easy to miss this armor since it requires a specific set of triggers in the Volcano Manor but the effort is worth it. The armor boasts a whopping 100 poise and one of the highest physical damage mitigation in Elden Ring. The ridiculous giant ram horns somewhat ruin the Elden Bling potential for the armor but that's easily excused since those who wear this will usually be the last one standing.

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Elden Ring is available on the PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X and Series S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, and Microsoft Windows.

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FAQs

What is the best armor for melee in Elden Ring? ›

The striking Royal Remains armor set is one of the most distinctive melee armor sets in Elden Ring, and is quickly becoming one of the most popular. Despite its physical resistances being slightly lower than some starting sets, the difference in weight, poise bonuses, and its passive ability make it worth grabbing.

What is the strongest Armour set in Elden Ring? ›

The Lionel's Set is the toughest suit of armor in Elden Ring. It's simply the best armor you can get if you want to face-tank hits without flinching with a good balance of defense and poise. This set will let you swing a greatsword into enemies regardless of the attacks they throw at you.

Do armor sets matter Elden Ring? ›

Players should know that there are no full set bonuses in Elden Ring. The game allows players to freely mix and match pieces of armor with different benefits and looks. Some pieces of armor have secondary effects, so players should look at each piece to see if it's worth wearing or simply looks cool.

What is the best warrior armor in Elden Ring? ›

For straight-up protection, the Bull-Goat Set is the best armour in Elden Ring. It's also the heaviest, so you'll need colossal Endurance to avoid heavy encumbrance penalties while wearing it.

Should I hand over twinned armor set? ›

If you handed the Twinned armor to D's brother

Once you've obtained the Mending Rune of the Death-Prince from Fia, you are free to leave the area. But if you chose to hand over the Twinned armor to D's brother earlier on, he'll show up when you next return and will be standing over Fia's body, having killed her.

Is Radahn armor the best? ›

The Radahn Armor is certainly one of the nicer and better Elden Ring Armors. To acquire this piece of beautiful armor, you need to first defeat Radahn which we know is a really hard boss battle to do, but trust us, it's worth it as you'll get one of the best armor pieces in the game.

Is the black knife armor good? ›

The Black Knife set is one of the best in the game for confident and dex-focused players. This set increases stealth by softening footsteps, and it provides a nice bit of dex bonus.

Does armour increase damage Elden Ring? ›

All Armor Sets in Elden Ring

Armor Sets provides players with protection and resistances against all types of damage such as Magic, Fire, Light or Holy. Wearing Armor also changes the character's appearance. Wearing all Set pieces won't grant any additional effects.

Does armor weight matter Elden Ring? ›

Each level affects a character's ability to dodge, recover, sprint, and speed in general, and there are benefits and drawbacks to maintaining a Light, Medium, or Heavy load. If you carry too heavy a load, your character's ability to move around the world will be greatly reduced.

What is the highest poise in Elden Ring? ›

Maximum Poise from a single armor set is 100 from the Bull-Goat Set. Veteran's Set offers one of the best Poise-to-weight ratio (1.755), giving 75 Poise but has a fairly heavy 45 weight.

Is Scaled armor good Elden Ring? ›

Scaled Set is an Armor Set in Elden Ring. This was worn by Old Knight Istvan. The corroded metal is reinforced with rock-hard scales, making it highly effective against non-physical attacks. Istvan is one of a few wizened Tarnished who survive to this day.
...
Scaled Gauntlets
GauntletWgt. 5.3
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Where is the best samurai armor for Elden Ring? ›

Land of Reeds Armor Set Location

It is the starting armor for the Samurai class, but there is another way of obtaining it in Elden Ring. You can buy the Land of Reeds armor in Elden Ring from the merchant located in North Caelid, located just next to the Isolated Merchant's Shack Site of Grace.

Is the bull goat armor good? ›

For players looking for armor high in poise and physical defense, the Bull-goat armor set has the highest of both out of all the other armor sets in the entire game. However, this comes with a hefty price: it's also the heaviest armor set in the game.

Should I give D's Armour? ›

Giving D's Brother the armor in Elden Ring doesn't lock players out of Fia's questline. Fortunately, players can wait until Fia gives birth to the Mending Rune of the Death-Prince at the end of her questline before speaking to D's Brother.

Is Twinned Armor good Elden Ring? ›

Twinned Armor Set

If players loot this set in the early game of Elden Ring, it will all but certainly be the best overall armor set that players have come across. To add it to the inventory, players can either kill D the first time they see him in Limgrave or advance Fia's questline at the Roundtable Hold.

Can you get D's armor in Elden Ring? ›

Players of Elden Ring will need to get through the questline given by D to have a chance at the armor set. Image via Elden Ring. Players will first need to work their way through the questline given by D. They will need to get some Deathroot and bring it to Beast Clergyman Gurranq.

What is the strongest weapon in Elden Ring? ›

The Dark Moon Greatsword is undoubtedly one of the strongest weapon in the game, continuing FromSoftware's love of including the fabled weapon in their games.

Is Scaled Armor good Elden Ring? ›

Scaled Set is an Armor Set in Elden Ring. This was worn by Old Knight Istvan. The corroded metal is reinforced with rock-hard scales, making it highly effective against non-physical attacks. Istvan is one of a few wizened Tarnished who survive to this day.
...
Scaled Gauntlets
GauntletWgt. 5.3
2 more rows

What is the best weapon in Elden Ring? ›

The Dark Moon Greatsword is arguably the coolest weapon in Elden Ring, and it is certainly one of the most difficult weapons in the game to obtain.

What is the best medium armor in Elden Ring? ›

Elden Ring best medium armor: Raging Wolf Set

If you're looking for a good medium armor set that provides strong protection while still being light enough for most builds, the Raging Wolf Set will be perfect. It's one of the lightest medium armor sets in the entire game, yet it offers excellent damage resistance.

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