Dexterity in Elden Ring only increases the speed of casting sorceries and incantations. It does not increase attack speed with any melee or ranged weapons. However, it does benefit some non-combat mechanics that can make your life easier.
Table Of Contents
Melee Weapon Speed Test
To test whether or not Dexterity actually affects melee weapons, an unupgraded scimitar was wielded with two hands. The first swing speed test was performed at 14 Dexterity while the next was performed at 24 Dexterity (equipping Dexterity-boosting talismans).
At 14 Dexterity, the two-handed scimitar’s normal attack took just under 3 frames (measured at 30 FPS) from the start of its animation to the end of it. Specifically, the duration was 80 milliseconds.
At 24 Dexterity, the results were the exact same. As such, since a difference of 10 points of Dexterity did nothing, it can be determined that Dexterity does not increase melee attack speed.
Ranged Weapon Speed Test
A similar approach was taken to test ranged weapon draw speed. This test was done with an unupgraded shortbow using bloodbone arrows. Once more, the first speed test was taken at 14 Dexterity, and the next at 24 Dexterity.
At 14 Dexterity, it took exactly 3 frames (at 30 FPS) to fully draw back the bowstring. This time is equivalent to 90 milliseconds. Then, when fired at 24 Dexterity, the draw speed was the exact same.
Just like with melee weapons, Dexterity does not increase the speed at which you can fire ranged weapons. It does not increase draw speed nor the speed of the projectile you fire.
Spell Speed Test
To test the casting speed difference between 14 and 24 Dexterity, the Stone of Gurranq incantation was used while a sacred seal was wielded in one hand.
At 14 Dexterity, it took just under 5 frames (at 30 FPS) to cast the Stone of Gurranq. This duration is equivalent to 140 milliseconds. However, at 24 Dexterity, it took exactly 4 frames to cast the Stone of Gurranq. Specifically, the duration was 120 milliseconds.
As such, since there is a difference of 20 milliseconds, it is confirmed that Dexterity actually does increase the casting speed of spells. Furthermore, by dividing the 10 added points of Dexterity by the 20-millisecond difference, it can be determined that every 1 point of Dexterity increases your casting speed by 2 milliseconds.
Conclusions About Dexterity and Attack Speed
If you plan on casting a lot of spells, you should definitely put some points into Dexterity. However, you should certainly focus more on pumping points into Intelligence, Faith, or Arcane than Dexterity (depending on the spells you want to use).
You should also consider using armor and talismans that directly increase your casting speed. Such equipment will increase your casting speed more than a few points in Dexterity here and there.
For Melee and Ranged Weapon Builds
If you’re more of a weapon-wielding player, you should not worry about Dexterity in terms of attack speed. In this case, you should only put points into Dexterity if you’re using a weapon that has high scaling with this stat.
Each weapon’s attack speed is locked. You cannot increase how fast you swing your melee weapons or how fast you draw your ranged weapons. If you want to attack faster, you’ll have to use a different weapon. Alternatively, to hit faster, you should use the attacks of your weapon’s moveset that have shorter attack animations.
Normal attacks always have a faster animation speed than strong attacks or jumping attacks. If normal attacks still aren’t fast enough for you, try using rolling attacks or running attacks. The start-up delay for rolling attacks and running attacks is less than for normal attacks. This, combined with you being able to attack while moving, will let you land hits easier in many cases.
Non-Combat Mechanics Affected by Dexterity
In addition to its combat mechanics, Dexterity does some other things in Elden Ring as well. Firstly, this stat will slightly decrease fall damage the higher it is. On top of that, Dexterity will also make it harder for enemies to knock you off of Torrent.
With that said, using the Longtail Cat talisman completely removes non-fatal fall damage. This makes it far more useful than leveling Dexterity to avoid getting hurt when you fall.
Although, the fact that this stat allows you to stay atop your steed longer is a pretty great trait. Many polearms are very good to wield while mounted, and plenty of them scale well with Dexterity. As such, if you plan on riding Torrent into battle a lot, some extra Dex would be a nice boon for your build.
Beware of Misinformation
This final message has been included due to the lack of reliable information about this topic on other websites. While researching and fact-checking for this article, no other site was found to give valid first-hand data. Not even any of the Elden Ring wikis.
There are quite a few websites out there that blatantly lie about what Dexterity does in Elden Ring. Worse yet, they won’t even test their own claims or give you the data they used (if any).
When you’re putting together a build, make sure to avoid such casual sources. If a website doesn’t tell you their data when they write about game combat mechanics, maybe ignore them.