The ability to withstand the impact of attacks.
If a player fails to withstand an attack, they will become stunned and vulnerable to subsequent attacks. Poise is the defensive stat that determines the player's ability to withstand various attacks.
If you have enough poise to withstand an attack, one of two things can occur depending on what you're doing:
If you take a hit and have sufficient poise while attacking, it is as if nothing happened and your attack animation will carry through without interruption.
While Idle or Moving
If you take a hit and have sufficient poise while standing still, walking, or running, you are put into a "half stagger" where movement speed is temporarily reduced. A player who is "half staggered" may still perform any usual action.
Poise Depletion and Regeneration
Poise essentially functions with an invisible meter that drains as hits are taken. This meter can be refilled in two ways:
- When a player fails to withstand an attack and becomes stunned, their poise is instantly refilled as soon as the stun animation is complete.
- When a player withstands an attack and has some remaining poise, the drained poise refills at 0.56 poise per second.
Note that the regeneration rate for a non-instant refill is very slow, commonly requiring over 20 seconds in various scenarios. This means that if a player withstands a hit, and takes another soon after, they have not regained any significant amount of poise inbetween and are at risk for having poise completely drained during the subsequent attacks.
Hyper Poise is a hidden, innate feature that accompanies most great weapons and boosts the effectiveness of poise. Its general purpose is to make it harder to interrupt the attacks of larger weapons.
Hyper Poise is briefly triggered during the attacks of certain weapons, active during the latter-portion of an attack's wind up, through to a few frames after the attack has been completed. While it's active, incoming poise damage is reduced by 50%.
The following weapons and attacks trigger Hyper Poise:
|All Ultra Greatswords||All attacks|
|All Greataxes||All attacks|
|All Great Hammers||All attacks excluding 1H Rolling and 2H R2 attacks|
|Most Halberds||1H R1, 1H R2, 1H Rolling, & 2H R1 attacks|
|Helix Halberd||1H R1, 1H Rolling, & 2H R1 attacks|
Poise primarily comes from your armor, typically heavier armor has higher poise. You can also increase Poise through your stats. Endurance and Adaptability together increase innate Poise by a small amount. It is increased by 0.3 per level until the lowest of Endurance and Adaptability is 30, then 0.2 until level 50 and 0.1 per level thereafter.
How to achieve high Poise:
|Ring of Giants||10/20/30|
|Increase Adaptability||See note above|
|Increase Endurance||See note above|
Different weapons are categorized by having different amounts of Poise Damage. A "Poise Breakpoint" refers to the minimum amount of poise needed to withstand a single hit from their various attack types:
List By Breakpoints
|36||1H R1 from 10 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|44||1H R2 from 10 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|46||1H R1 from 15 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|57||1H R2 from 15 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|61||1H R1 from 20 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|76||1H R1 from 25 Poise Dmg Weapons;
1H R2 from 20 Poise Dmg Weapons
|91||1H R1 from 30 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|94||1H R2 from 25 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|95||2H R1 from 10 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|122||2H R1 from 15 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|163||2H R1 from 20 Poise Dmg Weapons|
|203||2H R1 from 25 Poise Dmg Weapons|
A more detailed list of poise breakpoints can be found here
10 Poise Damage Weapons
Includes: Bandit's Knife, Black Scorpion Stinger, Chaos Rapier, Claws, Dagger, Espada Ropera, Handmaid's Ladle, Malformed Claws, Manikin Claws, Manikin Knife, Mytha's Bent Blade, Parrying Dagger, Rapier, Ricard's Rapier, Royal Dirk, Shadow Dagger, Spider Fang, Spider's Silk, Thief Dagger, Work Hook.
15 Poise Damage Weapons
Includes: All Reapers (except Silverblack Sickle), All Whips (except Bloodied Whip), Broken Straight Sword, Broken Thief Sword, Caestus, Darkdrift, Mail Breaker, Manikin Sabre, Melu Scimitar, Monastery Scimitar, Shotel.
20 Poise Damage Weapons
Includes: All Katanas (except Darkdrift), All Spears, Aldia Hammer, Black Dragon Sword, Bloodied Whip, Blue Flame, Broadsword, Estoc, Falchion, Heide Knight Sword, Longsword, Scimitar, Shortsword, Silverblack Sickle, Sun Sword, Varangian Sword, Yellow Quartz Longsword.
25 Poise Damage Weapons
Includes: All Twinblades (except Red Iron Twinblade), Barbed Club, Black Dragon Warpick, Bound Hand Axe, Club, Drakekeeper's Sword, Foot Soldier Sword, Homunculus Mace, Infantry Axe, Mace of the Insolent, Red Rust Scimitar, Red Rust Sword, Reinforced Club, Warped Sword.
30 Poise Damage Weapons
- Increasing innate poise through leveling your stats does not provide sufficient poise protection on its own, but it can be stacked with armor to achieve the various breakpoints.
- Hitting someone with the tip of certain weapons will result in reduced poise damage.
- Source of the latest testing results can be found here.