Elden Ring DLC: The Best Early Weapons In Shadow of The Erdtree

Shadow of the Erdtree is brutally difficult, but these early game weapons make things slightly easier.

Shadow of the Erdtree adds 95 new weapons to the base Elden Ring game. While many of them can’t be found until you’ve dived a little deeper into the DLC, those looking for immediate gear upgrades can find a few early weapons that offer just that and so much more.

Before we talk about where to find those weapons, please note that I’m classifying anything you can reasonably expect to find in Shadow of the Erdtree‘s opening hour as an “early” weapon. In most cases, you can make acquiring these weapons the first thing you do if you’d like to prioritize finding them. We’ll be talking about the best overall weapons in the game later on after exploring the DLC further.

Beast Claws Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Beast Claws

Beast Claws are melee fist weapons that essentially turn your character into a rampaging wolverine. Specifically, they enable a series of quick and powerful strikes that deal bleeding damage and allow you to perform a devastating leaping attack to quickly close distances. They are ideal for aggressive melee players who value Bleed damage and mobility.

To find the Beast Claws, start from the Gravesite Site of Grace where you begin Shadow of the Erdtree. From there, head slightly South and to the East. You should run into a wooded area called Gravesite Plain. There, you will find an enemy called Logur, The Beast Claw. Defeat Logur, and the Beast Claws are yours. 

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Backhand Blade Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Backhand Blade

One of the best early weapons in Shadow of the Erdtree is also one of the first weapons you’ll likely come across. The Backhand Blade is a devilishly quick sword that comes complete with a powerful ability that allows you to quickly close the gap and deal a quick blow. It’s also a “dual-wield” weapon that only takes up one inventory slot, which opens up some fascinating strategies. If you’re going for a speed-focused build, you have to give it a shot.

The Backhand Blade is sitting out in the open near a mausoleum-type structure not far from where you start Shadow of the Erdtree. You may have to kill a couple of enemies to safely grab it, but it’s incredibly easy to grab on the run if you need to.

Greatsword of Solitude Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Greatsword of Solitude

The Greatsword of Solitude is a fantastic Strength-based weapon that scales incredibly well with that primary attribute, deals a ton of base damage, and absolutely destroys enemy poise. As if that wasn’t enough, it also comes with an incredible weapon skill that gives Strength-based players a viable and reliable projectile attack that they can use to open battles or chip away at lesser enemies. It’s a must-have weapon for certain builds, and you can get it within minutes of starting the DLC. 

Well…maybe. See, this weapon is located just West of the first Shadow of the Erdtree Site of Grace in a small dungeon near the edge of that section of the map. However, you have to defeat the boss of that dungeon (the Blackgoal Knight) to acquire it. That will not be easy. That enemy is tough, is equipped with this powerful sword, and can take off about a third of your hit bar with a single strike. Overpowered veteran players may be able to beat him right away. Everyone else will need to level up in the DLC before taking him on.

Great Katana Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Great Katana

The Great Katana is easily one of the best early weapons in Shadow of the Erdtree. This blade boasts the size and power of a greatsword but retains the quick strike capabilities (and reach) of a katana. As if that wasn’t enough, it also comes with a devastating bleed effect that is relatively easy to build thanks to its rapid attack skills. It’s just an immediate upgrade for the right kind of build. 

To find it, follow the path North from Shadow of the Erdtree’s starting area (Gravesite Site of Grace) until you reach the Greatbridge North Site of Grace. To the West is a giant lake. Look for a dead body floating in the lake. That body is holding the Great Katana. There will be a dragon nearby, but you don’t have to fight them to get this weapon if you don’t want to. Just ride up, snatch it, and get out of there. 

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Milady Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location


One of the most essential weapons you’ll find early in Shadow of the Erdtree, Miladay is classified as a Light Greatsword. Similar to the Great Katana, it offers a balance of speed and power, though Milady emphasizes speed over power just slightly. However, because each of its fast blows deals damage proportional to your strength, it allows “power players” to unleash quick strikes in ways they would otherwise not be able to while still enjoying this kind of melee reach. 

Milady can be found in Castle Ensis, which is located to the East of the Greatbridge, North Site of Grace. Head through the nearby village and take the bridge that leads into the castle. You’ll need to kill a giant that is guarding the entrance. After that, head straight, veer left as soon as you are able, and climb up the staircase that leads to a ladder. You’ll find Milady at the top of that ladder. 

Moonrithyll’s Knight Sword Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Moonrithyll’s Knight Sword

The first Colossal Sword you will likely find in Shadow of the Erdtree lives up to the name. This Strength and Intelligence-based weapon is capable of unleashing devastatingly powerful strikes as most other massive swords in the game are. The kicker is its Tremendous Phalanx Weapon Skill which summons a series of defensive arcane projectiles that seek out nearby enemies. It’s a fantastic ability that lets you use magic to stagger foes with relative ease before going in for a big strike. 

The Moonrithyll’s Knight Sword is also located incredibly close to where you find Milady. Simply continue heading through Castle Ensis until you encounter the Moonrithyll, Carian Knight invader. Defeat the invader, and this powerful sword will be yours. 

Firespark Perfume Bottle Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Firespark Perfume Bottle

These Perfume Bottles essentially function like the fire bombs found in the base Elden Ring game. The big difference is that these weapons are not tied to consumables. Unlike other magic attacks, they also do not consume FP. Instead, they function like standard weapons that deplete your Stamina when used. That grants them an often ideal combination of magical ranged attacks while still allowing you to use them in melee situations. These particular bottles also inflict valuable fire damage on any foes that are weak (or at least not too resistant) to that effect. 

You’ll find these bottles in a chest right outside the entrance to Castle Ensis. Before you cross the bridge that leads directly into the castle, look to your right. You should see a camp of various enemies (mostly Perfumers). You’ll probably need to kill those enemies first, but the chest at the center of the camp contains this weapon. 

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Smithscript Dagger Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Smithscript Dagger

The Smithscript Dagger is a fascinating early weapon. It’s light, it’s quick, and it is one of the few weapons in the game that scales with all four of your primary weapon stats. On its own, it’s not the most powerful option in any particular category. However, it is a uniquely versatile weapon that can easily be wielded by those looking for a supplementary melee attack or anyone who is trying to explore a more balanced build strategy. 

The Smithscript Dagger can also be found in the area South of Castle Ensis. Once you’ve crossed the big bridge that leads to the Castle Ensis bridge (near where you found the Perfume Bottles), hang a right and ride on until you reach a nearby cliff. You should find the entrance to a dungeon called Ruined Forge Lava Intake. Proceed through the dungeon along the main path forward until you find yourself on the walkway above a large, open room. Jump down to the nearby stairwell and follow the path that leads upward. Jump across a short gap, take a right, go down a ladder, and head forward until you find a body guarded by enemies. That body contains the Smithscript Dagger.

Anvil Hammer Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Anvil Hammer

The Anvil Hammer is one of those early Shadow of the Erdtree weapons that will likely prove to be an instant upgrade for many players. It scales with Strength, Dexterity, Faith, and Intelligence (a rarity in this game), but it primarily functions as a slow and devastating colossal hammer. More importantly, its weapon skill is a devastating AoE attack that unleashes magical spears all around you. That combination of power, scaling distribution, and AoE capabilities makes this a truly unique weapon in the Elden Ring arsenal.

You can find this weapon in the Ruined Forge Lava Intake dungeon where you found the dagger. Head through that dungeon until you reach the room that has a mechanism in it triggered by a nearby lever. Use the lever, and it should create a platform in the lava below. Jump on that platform, follow the path along a nearby pipe, defeat whoever gets in your way, and you will eventually run into this weapon lying on the ground. 

Dragon-Hunter's Great Katana Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree Location

Dragon-Hunter’s Great Katana

This Katana is pretty awesome. Like the other Great Katana you can find early, it offers a nice blend of range, power, and speed while dealing bleeding damage. Unlike that Katanta, this one comes equipped with an incredible Weapon Skill that allows you to charge yourself with magic, leap into the air, and deal a powerful strike to whatever is in your way. That extra ability gives this weapon the edge if you’re committed to the Great Katana playstyle.

Granted, calling this an early weapon is a bit more of a stretch compared to the other Great Katana. You can find it by heading east from the entrance of Castle Ensis. This time, though, take the high road when you encounter a fork in the road. Follow the path that is filled with dragon-like statues until you encounter the Dragon’s Pit dungeon/Site of Grace. At the end of the dungeon is the Ancient Dragon-Man boss. He’s certainly tough early on, but if you’re coming into the DLC with a good build (or have leveled up a bit) you should be able to beat him and claim this sword. 

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