How to Increase Mau Damage
Demon’s Souls weapon stats are explained - how to increase damage, explain scaling and much more
(Image credit: Sony)
Understanding Demon’s Souls weapon stats is critical to surviving the original game and will no doubt hold true for the upcoming PS5 remake. Souls series experts have had plenty of time to learn the deep intricacies of the weapons, as well as the extensive upgrade systems to improve your equipment and stats. As you level up your character with Souls, you may wonder why it doesn't affect the weapons you use, or you may be at a loss as to how character development affects your weapons in general.
Here we explain in detail how weapons work, how to read their stats, and how this all relates to character progression - avoiding getting too far into the weeds in the process. Hopefully this will prepare you for the brutal battles that lie ahead with tips on how to understand the numbers behind every stroke of your ax or sword.
This is how you understand your gun's stats
Before you get to the point where you choose and upgrade a weapon, you need to understand how to read its stats and what all the numbers mean. This can have a huge impact on which weapon you ultimately choose, although that shouldn't be the only thing you consider (how a weapon feels is also important).
On the equipment screen, press X, then press a square on a gear and you will get to a long stats page with a ton of numbers, all of which represent something. Here's what each section means and how to read it, starting at the top.
(Image credit: Sony)
Type of damage and weapon type
The very first thing you see under the name of the weapon is the type of damage, which is indicated by four characters Normal, dull, slashed, and penetrating (in the order from left to right). Essentially, this will tell you what kind of animation your weapon will have when it is used. It might seem insignificant, but the type of attacks you will hand out - whether they are fast, piercing, or slower blunt attacks - can have a huge impact on how an encounter with an enemy will play out. Some enemies are more susceptible to different types of damage, and in some cases a seemingly weaker weapon in your arsenal can do more damage to a creature more susceptible to that type of damage.
To the right of this is the weapon type, which indicates the category of weapon - such as a bow, a large sword, or an ax. Don't get too hung up on this section as it is mainly for categorization.
Next comes the damage from physical attack. This is something that you should always be aware of as it is one of the most important factors that will determine the overall effectiveness of your weapon. The first number to the right of the physical attack is the base damage. The number to the right of that represents any bonuses you might get from your character's stats. This is known as scaling, which we will discuss a little below. For now, however, you need to know that the total physical damage done by your weapon is determined by the two numbers next to "Physical Attack". Remember that the bonus can be negative when your stats are low.
Magical and fire attack
This is followed by Magical Attack and Fire Attack - both have basic damage on the right and all stat bonuses on the left - just like the Physical Attack Attack status. Certain weapons deal Fire or Magical Attack damage in addition to physical damage, while others target one of these stats. When you start out, you will likely want to focus solely on the damage from physical attack, but later on you will come across weapon enchants or catalysts used to emit magic - which is related to magic attack or fire attack statistics.
Stat bonuses and special effects
(Image credit: Sony)
We'll cover stat bonuses in more detail in a separate section as they are much more complex. For now, however, all you know is that your character's stats can affect the effectiveness of your weapon.
This section tells you if special weapons are special effects Bleeding, poison, plague or critical blow (left to right). Some weapons don't have a special effect, others, like the Mercury Dagger above, for example, have a poison stats bonus - in this example the 360 that you can see - that stacks with physical attack stats too.
Damage reduction% and protection breakage reduction
(Image credit: Sony)
The next two statistics, Damage Reduction% and Guard Break Reduction, go hand in hand. Damage Reduction% is the percentage of an attack you can block. Remember, you can protect or block with a standard weapon, but this category is usually for shields. The two numbers next to this value represent the reduction in physical damage and the reduction in magical damage.
Try to get physical damage as close to 100% as possible, at least at the beginning of the game. In later sections, you'll want to shift your focus to shields that offer 100% damage reduction for both physical and magical attacks. For example, the dark silver shield above has 100% damage reduction for physical and magical attacks, which means you will not take any damage while you block with it (until your guard is broken).
The reduction in guard breaks equals the amount of damage you can take before your guard is broken. The higher this number, the more damage you can take from a single blow. Using the same dark silver shield as an example, it can withstand 50 points of damage before your guard is broken. From this point on, your stamina will be exhausted and you will suffer damage. As long as you manage your stamina and pull back when it's low, you don't have to worry too much about reducing protective breaks.
This section is extremely important as it tells you what character stats you will need to use a particular weapon. The symbols from left to right are, Strength, Dexterity, Magic and Faith. You must at least meet the statistical requirements given in this section to use a weapon. For example, the Knight Shield has a strength of 16, which means that your character must be at least 16 strength in order to use it. More powerful weapons have higher status requirements, like the blessed great sword, which requires 26 strength to be used.
Durability and weight
Demon Souls has a durability system where your weapons can break if they are used too often. This is indicated in the shelf life section, which is labeled “current / max.”. Using your weapon or shield will deplete the number on the left. You can repair weapons in the Nexus.
Weight is also important. Usually more powerful weapons weigh more and you will notice a difference in your character's movement as you use them. Depending on your style of play, this can make a huge difference in how you approach certain situations. We like as much mobility as possible, so we try to stay away from heavy weapons for the most part.
To the right of that is the Item Load section, which shows the weight of everything you do based on the total capacity you can carry. If you've played games like Skyrim, you will be familiar with these mechanics.
General weapon statistics
(Image credit: Sony)
Many of the statistics we've covered are complicated and can be overwhelming to understand at first. For your convenience, look at the list of stats on the right side of the menu and you will get a general idea of the total damage a weapon has. For example, with the meat cleaver above, it offers 433 total damage recovery based on physical attack, magical attack, and scaling. This is a lot easier to read than trying to add up each stat on the weapon individually.
How the scaling of Demon's Souls weapons works
(Image credit: Sony)
Scaling is a nuanced but essential part of how weapons work in Demon’s Souls. So we wanted to devote a whole section to it. There are four symbols next to the stat bonuses Strength, Dexterity, Magic and Faith (left to right). A scaled weapon has at least one letter next to one of these symbols that represents its rank.
The letters in order from best to worst are S, A, B, C, D or E. The better the letter, the more status bonus you get when you use a weapon. There is a whole formula that determines how much damage boost you get from each letter. For the sake of simplicity, however, all you need to know is that the effectiveness of your weapon will be improved based on your character's stats - and the extent of the improvement will be dictated by the letter that corresponds to that stat.
As an example, let's look at the Tearing Flamberge above. It has a stat bonus of E for strength and S for dexterity. This means that the higher your Strength, the higher your Strength - and a big Boost, the higher your Dexterity, the higher your Physical Attack will be. In this case, if we have increased our strength or dexterity, the weapon will have more damage. With this weapon, however, we recommend focusing on skill leveling as it has a greater impact than strength. All of these should be taken into account when determining your build and how you plan to level up your character.
Scaling isn't the only way to upgrade your weapon. You can also update your weapons, which we'll cover in a separate guide. For now, all you know is that the base physical attack (or magical attack, depending on the weapon) increases as you upgrade your weapon. So be careful when you visit the blacksmith.
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