Best Starting Keepsakes for Beginners in Elden Ring


Jason Gallagher

Writer and Storywriter


The hardest part of any “Soulsbourne”-style game for many players is almost always the very beginning, and Elden Ring is no exception. With only your starting gear and most enemies in the world at a higher level than you, it can be a tough slog through your early hours in the Lands Between.

Best Starting Keepsakes for Beginners in Elden Ring

Thankfully, developer FromSoftware has seen fit to offer players a little extra help in the early game by allowing the player to choose a Keepsake from one of nine options when creating their character. Each Keepsake will offer a small boon that will give the player a minor advantage in one specific part of the game when first getting started.

Here’s a look at the options and which starting Keepsake might be right for you.

Crimson Amber Medallion

A medallion inlaid with Crimson Amber. Raises max HP.”

Hit or health points are at a premium in the early hours of Elden Ring, and an item that might allow you to survive one extra attack by the skin of your teeth could be quite welcome. 

Alternatively, you could spend some more time leveling before going up against any serious foes and boost your Vigor and hit points that way.

Golden Seed

“A golden seed washed ashore from the Lands Between. Said to reinforce Sacred Flasks.

The Sacred Flask is one of the most important items in the game, it’s essentially a health potion you can use to heal yourself, but it has a limited number of charges and can’t be re-charged while in combat. 

Find Golden Seeds throughout the Lands Between, and you can add charges to your Flask – aka more healing for each boss fight.

This Keepsake gives you one Golden Seed, which is enough to add one charge to your Sacred Flask as soon as you get to the first Site of Grace. Future upgrades will eventually require more Golden Seeds, but you’ll find that immediate extra charge to be quite a boon when first starting.

Lands Between Rune

“The gold of grace shining in the eyes of the Lands Between. Use to gain many runes.

Runes are experience points, which is the equivalent of Souls in Dark Souls. Choose this Keepsake, and you’ll get a headstart on leveling, but to be honest, Runes are not challenging to come by in this game; you get some for killing just about anything, including the wildlife. So that’s a hard pass on this Keepsake.

Fanged Imp Ashes

“The ashes of small diminutive golems. Ashes are said to hold spirits within.”

Elden Ring provides a way to give yourself a little extra help in battle even when you are not in multiplayer mode. Spirit Ashes will summon a creature or helper who will attack whatever you are currently fighting. 

Spirit ashes can help deal some damage but may be most helpful during the first part of the game as a way to keep enemies focused on attacking someone or something else besides you. You can eventually find other Spirit Ashes to use throughout the game, but the Fanged Imps can be helpful right out of the gate.

Cracked Pot

“Three strange cracked pots that somehow mend themselves. A container for certain thrown items.”

The Cracked Pot is part of Elden Ring’s crafting system, and the item is required when using certain crafted things during combat. You usually get Cracked Pots by purchasing them from a vendor, but that will cost Runes that you would be better off spending on leveling.

If you intend to make heavy use of thrown items and other crafted goodies as part of your playstyle in the early game, this is one Keepsake that might be worth going for. 

Elden Ring Stonesword Key Best Starting Keepsakes for Beginners
Stonesword keys can unlock new areas hiding extra loot, special dungeons, and more.

Stonesword Key

Two stone keys shaped like swords. Breaks the seal on imp statues but can only be used once.”

Some areas on Elden Ring’s map are covered in fog, and the only way to get past the fog and see what’s on the other side is to use Stonesword Keys to activate the Imp Statue of your choice, which will make the fog behind it fade away.

What’s on the other side? Well, it depends. Sometimes it’s a whole dungeon; sometimes, it’s just a great piece of loot. If you know there is a weapon or a piece of armor somewhere you want to try and get right away, this starting Keepsake can allow you to do that.

For those looking for a tough challenge, choose this Keepsake and then use the two keys immediately on the first Imp Statue you’ll find in the game, just to the right of the Stranded Graveyard Site of Grace after the tutorial area. 

You’ll unlock the Fringefolk Hero’s Grave dungeon, which we don’t usually suggest attempting until your level is in the high 20s or early 30s. But hey, if you’re skilled enough, beating that dungeon can get you some solid loot for this part of the game.

Bewitching Branch

“Five sacred branches charged with beguiling power. Said to originate from Demigod Miquella.”

This Keepsake lets you essentially mind control an enemy and force them to fight on your side. It sounds like a great idea until you realize that the item is consumable. You get five branches, but the Fanged Imp Ashes are superior if you want to summon help for a fight because the Ashes will not deplete after use. 

This item might be better for a second playthrough or character if you want to have fun messing around with some of the early enemies you’ll encounter in the game.

Boiled Prawn

Five pieces of boiled prawn. Boosts physical damage negation.”

The flavor text here is pretty self-explanatory. But again, it’s consumable. If you want to stay alive longer, the extra healing charge from the Golden Seed is far superior, and even the Crimson Amber Medallion is a better option.

Shabriri’s Woe

“The crazed likeness of a goddess with no eyes. Attracts enemy aggression.”

This is only the “best” option if you want to make the game as hard as possible, or maybe you hate yourself. This Keepsake increases the aggro range for enemies, making it more likely they’ll see you coming from a mile away, and you also can forget about trying to sneak up on anyone in stealth.

Some players who know they will be playing in multiplayer with a partner for the duration of the game may find this item useful as it can act as a “taunt” of sorts, something that will get enemies to attack you instead of your friend while he’s trying to heal up. But for solo players? No thanks.


“No keepsake. The past has been well and truly left behind.”

You get nothing, and you’ll like it. This is another option for people who want to keep the difficulty at a high level in the early going. You receive no help, but maybe you don’t want the extra trouble Shabriri’s Woe can bring either.

Which Elden Ring Keepsake Should I Pick?

If you’ve made it this far, you probably already know what you want to go for. But if you’re asking us, it’s between the Golden Seed for the extra charge for your Sacred Flask or the set of Stonesword Keys if you think you can quickly cash them in on some excellent loot, that will let you overpower some of the early content. The Cracked Pot gets an honorable mention if you’re going to go hard on the crafting system right from the beginning.

Which Elden Ring starting Keepsake will you select? Let us know in the comments below.

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