Dark Souls Wiki
Dark Souls Wiki
For other uses, see Poise (disambiguation).

Poise is a game mechanic in Dark Souls II.


Poise is the player's resistance to being staggered. Poise works similar to stamina in that it is reduced and refills on its own. Poise is reduced each time the player takes a direct hit. Shields prevent damage to poise when used to block an attack, instead reducing the player's stamina. If poise is reduced to zero the player will become staggered, following which, poise will refill. Poise will otherwise refill at a rate of 0.56 poise per second.


The player innately has very little poise, which can be increased by leveling the Endurance and Adaptability stats. Players gain Poise via these stats according to the value of the lower one. Poise via leveling increases by 0.3 up until level 30, then by 0.2 up to level 50, then by 0.1 up to level 98, gaining 0.2 at level 99 for a total of 18.

Poise is primarily added by the armor currently equipped, heavier armor typically providing more poise. Poise can also be increased further by using the Ring of Giants, granting 10/20/30 poise at +0/+1/+2.

Poise damage[]

PvE Poise Damage[]

Every weapon has its own value of Poise Damage specified in the menu. This is the damage a 1 handed Light Attack will inflict vs NPCs (in PvE). Every other attack does multiplies this number by an amount specific to the attack.

PvP Poise Damage[]

Every weapon has a second Poise Damage number that cannot be found in-game. Same as in PvE, this value helps determine the PvP poise damage numbers by being multiplied by the same numbers.

Stone Ring[]

Using the Stone Ring makes it so that every single hitbox created by a player deals 30 additional poise damage if it interacts with an entity in any way. This means that even sources of damage that do not cause poise damage, such as Dark Fog can reduce poise. However, hitboxes that cannot stagger still cannot stagger, meaning that this mostly just works to reduce poise so the next attack has an easier time reducing it to zero. Some self-buffs such as weapon buffs will also start dealing poise damage to the player that uses them when stone ring is equipped.

Tip Hits[]

Tip Hits or Glancing Blows are community terms for a mechanic in Dark Souls II. Most attacks in the game have a distance at which they start doing reduced damage, as if the attack was barely able to touch the enemy. This also applies to poise damage. Tip hits cause hyper stagger to be ignored and real a reduced amount of poise damage. This is not the case for the Axe, Hammer, Greataxe or Great Hammer Classes or Silverblack Sickle as they have no tip hit poise penalties.

Table with all poise damage values and tip hit reductions

Hyper Stagger[]

Hyper Stagger is a quality shared by most Rolling, Jumping and 2-Handed Strong attacks. When an attack that has hyperstagger connects with an enemy, that enemy is staggered even when Poise is not depleted. This means most weapons have a way to stagger most entities even if they have low Poise Damage.

Table with Attacks that can Hyperstagger.

Hyper Armor[]

Hyper Armor is a state a player or NPC can access, usually via specific weapon attacks, which changes how Poise Damage interacts with them.

When Hyper Armor is active, attacks a character receives are altered in two ways:

  • Hyperstagger gets ignored.
  • Incoming Poise Damage is reduced.

This way, attacks that can hyper stagger get countered by attacks from heavy weapons and characters that use them can make more use of Poise than characters with lighter weapons can.

Each weapon has a specific Hyper Armor multiplier that corresponds to its weapon class. Weapon class doesn't entirely correlate with the menu 's specified class but rather with the moveset of the weapon.

Not all attacks apply hyper armor, as a general rule it's limited to the slower attacks on weapons.

Dodge rolls have a similar mechanic where they simply ignore poise damage for a section of their animation after their iframes end.

Hyper Armor Weapon Table[]

Weapon Poise Damage Multiplier Percentage Reduced
Archdrake Mace 80.00% 20.00%
Black Knight Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Blue Knight's Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Bone Fist 80.00% 20.00%
Chariot Lance 80.00% 20.00%
Dragonrider's Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Drakekeeper's Warpick 80.00% 20.00%
Grand Lance 80.00% 20.00%
Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Heide Greatlance 80.00% 20.00%
Heide Lance 80.00% 20.00%
Helix Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Lucerne 80.00% 20.00%
Mastodon Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Old Knight Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Old Knight Pike 80.00% 20.00%
Rampart Golem Lance 80.00% 20.00%
Roaring Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Scythe 80.00% 20.00%
Syan's Halberd 80.00% 20.00%
Wrathful Axe 80.00% 20.00%
Yorgh's Spear 80.00% 20.00%
Arced Sword 60.00% 40.00%
Butcher's Knife 60.00% 40.00%
Curved Dragon Greatsword 60.00% 40.00%
Curved Nil Greatsword 60.00% 40.00%
Gyrm Axe 60.00% 40.00%
Murakumo 60.00% 40.00%
Aged Smelter Sword 50.00% 50.00%
Bandit Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Black Dragon Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Black Knight Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Black Knight Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Crypt Blacksword 50.00% 50.00%
Drakekeeper's Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Drakekeeper's Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Drakewing Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Fume Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Giant Stone Axe 50.00% 50.00%
Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Gyrm Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Ivory King Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
King's Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Lion Greataxe 50.00% 50.00%
Lost Sinner's Sword 50.00% 50.00%
Old Knight Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Pursuer's Ultra Greatsword 50.00% 50.00%
Smelter Sword 50.00% 50.00%
Zweihander 50.00% 50.00%
Demon's Great Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
Dragon Tooth 30.00% 70.00%
Dragonrider Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Drakekeeper's Great Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
Drakekeeper's Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Giant Warrior Club 30.00% 70.00%
Great Club 30.00% 70.00%
Greatshield of Glory 30.00% 70.00%
Gyrm Great Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
Gyrm Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Havel's Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Iron King Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
King's Mirror 30.00% 70.00%
Large Club 30.00% 70.00%
Malformed Shell 30.00% 70.00%
Malformed Skull 30.00% 70.00%
Mastodon Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Old Knight Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Old Knight Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
Orma's Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Pate's Shield 30.00% 70.00%
Pursuer's Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Rebel's Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Reeve's Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Sacred Chime Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
Sanctum Mace 30.00% 70.00%
Smelter Hammer 30.00% 70.00%
Tower Shield 30.00% 70.00%
Twin Dragon Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%
Wicked Eye Greatshield 30.00% 70.00%