Steelrising’s stats aren’t as varied as a more robust Souls-like, but there is more going on there than in Thymesia. Which stats are best for your build depends slightly on what weapons you want to use — Power or Agility — but the remaining two choices are almost always the same.
There is some diversity with the less valuable stats if you have extra experience, but ideally, you’re spending your Anima Essense on optimizing your character rather than experimenting with bonuses that do you almost no good.
The Best Stats to Upgrade in Steelrising
The three stats you want to focus on in Steelrising are your primary damage stat, Durability, and Engineering. The first two are very straightforward. Your damage stat increases your damage; Durability increases your Health. Engineering has a little more going on, but its primary purposes are to increase your status buildup and loot luck.
Primary Damage Stat: Power and Agility
While we recommend focusing on Agility for your first playthrough, the higher single-attack damage potential Power weapons have is sometimes hard to pass up.
Power weapons are the larger, slower equipment like Halberds, Hammers, and Flails. Many early options in the Power selection don’t have an element attached to them, but you’re bound to find at least a few by the mid-game with either Fire or Ice affinities.
Power weapons take a little more forethought to use, as their animations are sluggish and have a significant recovery period. Landing a big swing, however, especially with a status activation, is some of the most satisfying stuff in the game.
Agility is all about speed and constant, smaller attacks. Fans, Daggers, and the Falchion and Sabre are primarily Agility Weapons. Every one of them has the potential to out-damage their rough equivalents in the Power categories through the sheer number of attacks the most powerful of them can get out in a short span of time.
Agility weapons are also better at applying status effects, and with the immense power of status afflictions in Steelrising, you’ll doubly benefit from investing in Agility equipment. They even provide additional stagger damage, so there are few downsides to picking Agility.
Durability: For Your Health
Durability determines your maximum Health and Balance scores. More Health means more time in the fight and less spent waiting to respawn at a Vestal. Stamina isn’t a huge concern in Steelrising, as even at base level, you have more than enough for half a dozen attacks and a few dodges, and the recovery systems let you get most of it back quickly.
The Balance stat determines how likely you are to stagger when you’re charging an attack of your own, either a heavy or a Special. In other words, increasing Durability makes you more resilient all around, able to take more hits and stay standing more often.
Engineering: Fry Them, Freeze Them, Take From Them Everything
Don’t underestimate what putting a few points in Engineering can do for your build. The stat directly augments how much status buildup you do, and the fast you can build up something like Frost, the longer your enemies will be unable to do anything to you. For builds that focus on pure damage output, more Fire buildup is straight up more DPS.
Engineering is also the determining stat for your loot luck. Called Loot Multiplier in Steelrising, the higher you take Engineering, the better your rewards will be. Most enemies usually drop Alchemical Capsules when defeated, but with a high enough multiplier, your earnings could be far more valuable.
The remaining two stats you need to consider — Elemental Alchemy and Vigour — are fine to put a few points in if you feel like it, but they shouldn’t be a priority. Elemental Alchemy increases your elemental resistances, but you’re better off spending your time learning how to avoid being hit and recovering once you are than buffing flat defenses.
Vigour’s primary purpose is to increase your Endurance, but stamina management is, again, less of a concern in the game than raw damage or survivability.
The build variety in Steelrising is commendable for an otherwise average attempt at a Souls-like. Still, the stat spreads will probably look pretty similar across most builds, at least for a first playthrough. For help with some other aspects of build-making, check out our best Agility weapons guide.