I’ve focused heavily on ranged weapons when I started playing Elden Ring. Granted, the class I chose already had one by default, which made acquisition moot. As for everything else beyond that, well, let’s just say that bosses loved to say cheese. Here’s our Elden Ring guide to help you get ranged weapons, like bows and crossbows, as well as ammo.
Note: For more information, check out our Elden Ring guides and features hub.
Elden Ring guide – How to get ranged weapons and ammo
Two classes in Elden Ring already start out with ranged weapons. These are the Bandit and the Samurai. If you picked those, then good for you since you could just happily upgrade their default weapons a bit to make them more viable. For the other classes, well, you’re bound to search for those.
Note: Generally speaking, bows rely primarily on Dexterity, whereas Crossbows use Strength. Of course, there are exceptions to the rule, and there are even items that use Faith as a stat stick.
As for why you’ll want to have a bow or crossbow handy, that’s because they can trivialize a lot of encounters. Found a safe spot while fighting the Tree Sentinel or Flying Dragon Agheel? Go ahead and snipe them. Trying to stay mobile while battling Erdtree Avatars? Get on Torrent and do some mounted archery.
Because of how boss scripts work, it’s possible to trick the AI’s pathing and aggro range. This can help you shoot from afar, and maybe even cause them to despawn or reset (they won’t regenerate HP unless you die or rest in a Site of Grace).
Even better, you can get a lot of cheap basic ammunition (i.e., arrows or bolts) from merchant NPCs. The maximum number that they can sell at any given time is dependent on how many runes you have, so you can check out our rune farming guide if you need more. Likewise, although most ammo gets capped at 99x pieces, anything in excess of that will get placed in your storage. As such, you’ll have all the arrows and bolts you’ll want whenever you visit a Site of Grace. You may also craft these if you have the requisite materials. Just don’t forget to equip them in your inventory as well.
In any case, for the sake of clarity, I won’t list down all the ranged weapons in Elden Ring. However, I’ll mention some decent options that you can acquire fairly early on.
You’ll find a merchant sitting under a rock formation near the entrance to Limgrave’s Coastal Cave. The Shortbow can be bought for 600 runes.
Soldier’s Crossbow and Arrow’s Reach Talisman
This requires you to progress a bit further until you reach the Gatehouse. From there, you’ll have to get past a troll, as well as several soldiers.
Then, once you arrive at the top of the sloping path, don’t head to Stormhill Shack. Instead, turn around and follow the hill as it leads back to the ramparts.
There’s a barbarian here, as well as a couple of crossbowmen. The two mobs have a chance of dropping the Soldier’s Crossbow.
Open the chest here to receive the Arrow’s Reach Talisman. It improves the effective range of your bows, allowing them to deal decent damage from further away.
Next, if you head south of Limgrave, you’ll find the Weeping Peninsula. Across the bridge and to the east, you’ll spot the Forest Lookout Tower. Climb to the very top and open the chest to get the Hand Ballista.
Further south along the main road, you’ll see the Castle Morne Rampart bonfire. You can purchase the Light Crossbow from the merchant for 1,500 runes.
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