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Best Elden Ring armor sets and where to get them

How to get the best armor sets in Elden Ring early on

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Bull-Goat armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

Looking for the best Elden Ring armor? Debating just what is the best armor in Elden Ring is a tricky conundrum as it depends on what build you're optimising for.

Due to that, we've decided to cultivate a list of the best armor sets in Elden Ring for heavy, light, mage builds and more. This is whilst exploring the best sets to get early in the game for any Tarnished newbies or players looking to restart the game ahead of the Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree DLC.

See below for our list of the 15 best Elden Ring armour sets and a walkthrough on how to get each one for yourself.

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The best Elden Ring armor

Because your choice of Elden Ring armour should depend on your playstyle, we've included a variety of armour types in the below list, ranging from heavy tanky armour suits to lightweight and spellcaster options, and covering everything from the early-game to the late-game.

The best Elden Ring armor:

  • Twinned Armor
  • Carian Knight Armor
  • Cleanrot Armor
  • Bull-Goat Armor
  • Lionel's Armor
  • Banished Knight Armor
  • Malenia's Armor
  • Black Knife Armor
  • War Surgeon Armor
  • Spellblade Armor
  • Queen Of The Full Moon Armor
  • Haligtree Knight Armor
  • Land Of Reeds Armor
  • Mushroom Armor
  • Drake Knight Armor

Best Elden Ring early armor

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Twinned armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Twinned Armor Set

The Twinned Armor Set worn by the character D, Hunter of the Dead, is one of the strongest and easiest to obtain early armour sets in Elden Ring.

Physical: 30.4 VS Strike: 27.9 VS Slash: 33.2 VS Pierce: 27.4
Magic: 25.7 Fire: 25.7 Lightning: 20.4 Holy: 23.3
Immunity: 83 Robustness: 135 Focus: 53 Vitality: 105
Poise: 50 Weight: 30

This set boasts all-round great damage reduction stats for both physical and magical damage, and also provides a good amount of robustness to help counter bleed attacks and frostbite. It's quite rare for the Twinned Armor set to not be the best armour in your inventory by the time you get your hands on it, so it's definitely a worthy contender for the title of best early-game armour in Elden Ring.

How to get the Twinned Armor Set:

To get the Twinned Armor set, you'll need to either kill D when you first meet him in Limgrave, or simply progress through Fia's questline until you receive her dagger. Hand the dagger to D, then reload the area and head past Hewg to find a newly opened room where D lies dead on the floor. You can then pick up D's Bell Bearing, along with the entire Twinned Armor set.

If you then proceed to give the Twinned Armor to D's brother at the Siofra Aqueduct, you can claim it back by finding Fia in Deeproot Depths, asking for a hug, then defeating the Lichdragon Fortissax. After that, reload the area and you'll find that D's brother has returned and slewn Fia in her sleep. At this point you can either attack D's brother and kill him to retrieve the Twinned Armor, or simply reload the area once more to find him gone and the Twinned Armor Set on the floor where he previously stood.

Carian Knight Set

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Carian Knight armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

The Carian Knight Set is another powerful early-game armour set which provides slightly less physical damage protection than the Twinned Armor Set, but in return provides greater magical protection and for less overall weight.

Physical: 25.8 VS Strike: 23.6 VS Slash: 27 VS Pierce: 28.5
Magic: 27 Fire: 28.5 Lightning: 20.6 Holy: 25.8
Immunity: 66 Robustness: 110 Focus: 50 Vitality: 55
Poise: 40 Weight: 25.1

Carian Knights are enchanted warriors who swore allegiance to the Carian royals in Liurnia. As such, their armour provides more of a balance between physical and magical protection than most knightly armour you'll find at this stage of the game. It's a great armour set to use, no matter your choice of Elden Ring build.

How to get the Carian Knight Armor Set:

You can find the entire Carian Knight Set in Raya Lucaria Academy in the centre of Liurnia of the Lakes. From the Church of the Cuckoo Site of Grace, proceed through the graveyard until you reach the large gates. Then head immediately right around the edge of the gates, and drop down onto the platform just below. Follow the platform to find a group of Glintstone Zombies worshipping a large gravestone. At the foot of this gravestone is the Carian Knight Set of armour.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Cleanrot Knight armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Cleanrot Set

The armour worn by the Cleanrot Knights of the Caelid Wilds may be harder to obtain, but by prioritising it you'll gain access to one of the undisputed best early armour sets in Elden Ring.

Physical: 31.8 VS Strike: 29.1 VS Slash: 35 VS Pierce: 38.3
Magic: 27.4 Fire: 27.9 Lightning: 24.7 Holy: 29.3
Immunity: 150 Robustness: 159 Focus: 66 Vitality: 77
Poise: 58 Weight: 35.7

The Cleanrot Set beats the Twinned Armor Set in every stat except Vitality, albeit at the price of being slightly heavier. Still, by the time you come to venture into the Caelid Wilds to obtain this armour, you'll likely have pumped enough points into Endurance that you could easily incorporate the powerful Cleanrot armour into your setup.

How to get the Cleanrot Armor Set:

Unlike the other armour sets mentioned so far, the Cleanrot Set is dropped piece-by-piece as random loot from Cleanrot Knights in the Caelid Wilds. The two best places to farm Cleanrot Knights are Aeonia Swamp in the centre of Caelid, and the War-Dead Catacombs - a dungeon that can only be accessed from the battlefield where you fight Starscourge Radahn.

If you don't want to venture into the Caelid Wilds quite yet, you can also find and fight some Cleanrot Knights in the Shaded Castle in the Altus Plateau - although it may take you longer to farm the Cleanrot armour pieces there than in somewhere like the Aeonia Swamp, where Cleanrot Knights are more commonplace.

Best Elden Ring heavy armor

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Bull-Goat armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

Bull-Goat Set

For straight-up protection, the Bull-Goat Set is the best armour in Elden Ring. It's also the heaviest, so you'll need colossal Endurance to avoid heavy encumbrance penalties while wearing it.

Physical: 45 VS Strike: 44.6 VS Slash: 40.2 VS Pierce: 40.2
Magic: 28.9 Fire: 29.4 Lightning: 31 Holy: 27.9
Immunity: 170 Robustness: 197 Focus: 110 Vitality: 130
Poise: 100 Weight: 63

The tanky Bull-Goat Armor Set worn by Great Horned Tragoth is around twice the weight of the other armour sets featured so far, but if you can handle the bulk, this armour boasts the highest physical defence of any set in Elden Ring. It also gives you a staggering +100 buff to your Poise, allowing you to ignore many enemies' hits that would otherwise interrupt your attacks.

How to get the Bull-Goat Armor Set:

To get the Bull-Goat Armor Set, you need to kill Great Horned Tragoth, one of the many optional Elden Ring bosses hidden within a certain character's questline. In this case, you need to spare Patches in Murkwater Cave, then progress his questline until Patches moves to Volcano Manor in Mt Gelmir.

After completing your first contract assassination for Lady Tanith, talk to Patches in Volcano Manor and he'll send you on a mission of his own to kill Great Horned Tragoth in the Ruin-Strewn Precipice between Liurnia and Altus Plateau. Succeed in killing Great Horned Tragoth and you'll earn the Bull-Goat Armor Set as a reward.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing Lionel's armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Lionel's Set

This bulky and distinctive set of armour was worn by Lionel the Lionhearted, adoptive father of Fia. It's among the heaviest and tankiest armour sets in the game, and a great choice for any melee character.

Physical: 38.3 VS Strike: 35.7 VS Slash: 42.2 VS Pierce: 43.4
Magic: 29.3 Fire: 32.4 Lightning: 28.2 Holy: 29.3
Immunity: 150 Robustness: 235 Focus: 100 Vitality: 100
Poise: 86 Weight: 50.7

While not quite as strong as the Bull-Goat Set in terms of physical protection, Lionel's Set is also considerably lighter (though still very weighty) and provides the player with an astonishing amount of Robustness, along with a respectable set of magical damage negation stats.

How to get Lionel's Armor Set:

Lionel's Set is resting on the bed next to the Lower Capital Church Site of Grace in Leyndell. To get there, once you reach the main street of Leyndell head north-east. Take the first left, and then take the left path again and head down the lift.

From the bottom of the lift, run down past the graveyard with the zombies, and then take a right. At the bridge, hop down into the sewers below and head south-west. Head up the stairs on your left, then use the ladder nearby to exit the sewers. Right in front of you at the top of the ladder is the Lower Capital Church Site of Grace and the bed with Lionel's Set.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Banished Knight armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Banished Knight Set

Whil not as heavy or as protective as the previous two sets, the Banished Knight Armor Set is still a very respectable and powerful set of heavy armour for those without legendary amounts of Endurance.

Physical: 40.7 VS Strike: 32.7 VS Slash: 42.2 VS Pierce: 38.3
Magic: 29.3 Fire: 29.3 Lightning: 28.2 Holy: 28.9
Immunity: 143 Robustness: 197 Focus: 91 Vitality: 160
Poise: 72 Weight: 41.6

Weighing far less than Lionel's Set, the Banished Knight armour is easier to use without incurring equip load penalties. And despite its comparative lightness, it actually provides greater physical damage protection even than Lionel's Set.

How to get the Banished Knight Armor Set:

Unfortunately, it's not too easy to get the full Banished Knight Set, as the armour only drops a piece at a time as loot from slain Banished Knights - and Banished Knights are quite fearsome foes in Elden Ring. The earliest and easiest place to farm Banished Knight Armor is at the Rampart Tower Site of Grace in Stormveil Castle in Limgrave. Down the spiral stairs nearby is a Banished Knight that you can kill and respawn as many times as needed to earn the entire Banished Knight Set.

Best Elden Ring light armor

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Malenia armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Malenia's Set

If you're looking for some top-tier late game light armour, you can't do much better than Malenia's Set - a very lightweight but surprisingly sturdy and good-looking armour set for any character.

Physical: 25.5 VS Strike: 18.2 VS Slash: 26.6 VS Pierce: 22.8
Magic: 15.3 Fire: 18.2 Lightning: 11.9 Holy: 19.8
Immunity: 108 Robustness: 90 Focus: 36 Vitality: 36
Poise: 37 Weight: 20.5

Malenia's armour gives the player very high immunity and robustness stats for light armour, along with considerable damage protection against both physical and magical attacks. It obviously can't tank hits nearly as well as good heavy armour, but the upside is that you can easily wear Malenia's Set while also keeping your equip load as light as possible.

How to get Malenia's Armor Set:

To get Malenia's Set, you need to defeat Malenia herself in combat. She is found in Elphael, Brace of the Haligtree, and she is one of the most challenging bosses in Elden Ring, so beating her won't be easy. If you need help finding her, check out our guide to Malenia's location in Elden Ring.

After you've defeated Malenia, you can talk to Enia at the Roundtable Hold in order to purchase each piece of Malenia's Set individually. The total cost of Malenia's Set is 56,000 Runes, so if you're strapped for cash you should check out our guide on the best rune-farming locations in Elden Ring.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Black Knife armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Black Knife Set

The Black Knife Armor Set makes for some of the strongest lightweight armour in the game. The chest piece also silences your footsteps, like a permanent version of the Assassin's Approach incantation.

Physical: 24.5 VS Strike: 23.4 VS Slash: 26.8 VS Pierce: 26.8
Magic: 18.7 Fire: 20.3 Lightning: 14.2 Holy: 24.5
Immunity: 65 Robustness: 108 Focus: 54 Vitality: 54
Poise: 40 Weight: 21.8

Not only does the Black Knife Set look great, it also provides great damage protection - eclipsing that of Malenia's Set in most regards - for only a tiny bit of extra weight. Together with the inherent footstep-muffling effect of the chest armour, the Black Knife Set is well worth getting your hands on as soon as possible if you're looking for good light armour.

How to get the Black Knife Armor Set:

You can find the Black Knife Set in Ordina, Liturgical Town in the Consecrated Snowfield. This area is locked until you join both halves of the Haligtree Secret Medallion and use it at the Grand Lift of Rold.

Once you reach Ordina, head around the edge of the town until you reach the archways under the large set of stairs at the northern edge of the town. Beneath the first archway is a corpse which you can loot to find the Black Knife Armor Set.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the War Surgeon armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

War Surgeon Set

The War Surgeon Set falls a little short of the defensive capabilities of the other light armour sets here, but makes up for it by increasing your attack power once you've inflicted blood loss on a nearby enemy.

Physical: 15.2 VS Strike: 17.1 VS Slash: 18.9 VS Pierce: 15.2
Magic: 20.4 Fire: 21.9 Lightning: 23.4 Holy: 21.9
Immunity: 127 Robustness: 91 Focus: 108 Vitality: 118
Poise: 29 Weight: 16.6

As you can see, the stats of this armour set are respectable, but nothing to write home about. On the upside, it's an incredibly lightweight set, so you can easily keep your equip load light while benefitting from the blood loss attack bonus supplied by the White Mask Helm. Blood loss is by far the strongest status effect in Elden Ring, and this is a fantastic armour set to use alongside your best bleed build.

How to get the War Surgeon Armor Set:

The entire War Surgeon Set is dropped by one of the three Nameless White Mask invaders in the river outside of Mohgwyn Palace. To reach Mohgwyn Palace, you need to either complete White-Mask Varre's questline, or use the portal on the western side of the Consecrated Snowfield.

Best Elden Ring mage armor

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Spellblade armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Spellblade Set

The Spellblade Set worn by Sorcerer Rogier gives players a high amount of magical defence, Focus, and Vitality, alongside a boost to magic skill damage, making it a perfect fit for any mage.

Physical: 9.2 VS Strike: 6.1 VS Slash: 9.2 VS Pierce: 9.2
Magic: 27.6 Fire: 24.6 Lightning: 25.7 Holy: 27.6
Immunity: 86 Robustness: 44 Focus: 141 Vitality: 151
Poise: 15 Weight: 8.6

It's worth noting that this set doesn't boost the damage of sorceries or incantations - only Ashes of War skills of the Glintstone variety, such as the powerful and versatile Glintstone Phalanx skill. Overall, if you're looking for an ultra-lightweight and effective armour set for spellcasters who don't like to get up close and personal, then the Spellblade Set is a great option.

How to get the Spellblade Armor Set:

The Spellblade Armor Set is worn by your friend Rogier, who you first meet in Stormveil Castle but afterwards can be found on the balcony of the Roundtable Hold. To obtain the armour, all you need to do is begin Ranni's questline and enter her service. After this, return to Rogier and you'll find him in a bad way. After this, reload the area a couple of times, and Rogier will have died, leaving behind his Bell Bearing and his Spellblade Armor, ripe for the taking.

It's worth noting that Sorcerer Rogier has his own minor questline which is cut short the moment you enter Ranni's service. So if you wish to see everything Rogier has to offer your Elden Ring experience, then be sure to complete his questline before pledging allegiance to Ranni.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Queen Of The Full Moon armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Queen Of The Full Moon Set

The Queen Of The Full Moon Armor Set worn by Rennala is a fitting set of garments for a powerful sorcerer or sorceress, improving on the stats of the Spellblade Armor in nearly every respect.

Physical: 12.3 VS Strike: 9.9 VS Slash: 9.9 VS Pierce: 6.9
Magic: 29.7 Fire: 27 Lightning: 27.7 Holy: 28.6
Immunity: 96 Robustness: 58 Focus: 167 Vitality: 187
Poise: 16 Weight: 11.1

The Queen's Crescent Crown may look a little silly, but it is also the most important piece in the set, as it increases your Intelligence by a weighty +3, making your Sorceries more powerful. Overall, the Queen Of The Full Moon Set is far from the most protective, but like the Spellblade Set it's a fine lightweight set which offers strong Focus and Vitality buffs and some great magical damage negation.

How to get the Queen Of The Full Moon Armor Set:

You can purchase the Queen Of The Full Moon Set from Enia at the Roundtable Hold after you have defeated Rennala in the Raya Lucaria Academy in Liurnia. The complete set costs 31,000 Runes.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Haligtree Knight armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Haligtree Knight Set

The weighty and balanced Haligtree Knight Set of armour is ideal for battlemages who use incantations rather than sorceries, thanks to the set's boost to Faith while worn.

Physical: 29.3 VS Strike: 27 VS Slash: 29.3 VS Pierce: 29.3
Magic: 22.1 Fire: 24.7 Lightning: 20.6 Holy: 24.7
Immunity: 84 Robustness: 135 Focus: 57 Vitality: 59
Poise: 43 Weight: 28.1

Worn by the Knights of Miquella's Haligtree, this set of armour is likely to be too heavy for a dedicated spellcaster who has barely put any points into Endurance, but for slightly more well-rounded setups it's a great late-game armour set which offers good physical and magical damage protection, alongside the aforementioned boost to Faith.

How to get the Haligtree Knight Armor Set:

The Haligtree Knight Set must be looted from Elphael, Brace of the Haligtree - the same place where you can find Malenia as mentioned above. The helm can be found by heading up the ladder next to the Elphael Inner Wall Site of Grace.

For the other pieces of the Haligtree Knight Set, you'll need to loot them from Haligtree Knights themselves. After killing the Putrid Avatar next to the Elphael Inner Wall Site of Grace, you can keep resting there and then killing the two Haligtree Knights that flanked the Avatar for an easy(ish) farming method for this armour set.

Best looking Elden Ring armor

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Land Of Reeds armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Land Of Reeds Set

The starting armour of the Samurai character class in Elden Ring, the stylish and effective Land Of Reeds Armor Set remains one of the best-looking options for armour in the game.

Physical: 19 VS Strike: 20.6 VS Slash: 25.8 VS Pierce: 20.6
Magic: 22.1 Fire: 24.7 Lightning: 25.8 Holy: 23.6
Immunity: 143 Robustness: 120 Focus: 120 Vitality: 130
Poise: 34 Weight: 19.8

The Land Of Reeds Set is not at all bad as far as starting armour goes, with similar stats to the late-game War Surgeon Set (albeit without the blood loss damage bonus). But the main reason to love this armour is because you get to look like a samurai. Don't tell me you don't want that.

How to get the Land Of Reeds Armor Set:

If you begin the game as a Samurai, you'll start with the Land Of Reeds Set equipped. Otherwise, you can purchase the entire Set from the merchant at the Isolated Merchant's Shack in Dragonbarrow, in the Caelid Wilds. You can find the Shack atop the cliff to the east of the Minor Erdtree and to the south of the Colosseum.

Be warned: if you head there at night, the merchant won't be there, and in its place will be the powerful Bell Bearing Hunter boss. Best approach at daytime if you want to buy this armour set.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Mushroom armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.

Mushroom Set

Not only is the Mushroom Set one of the most recognisable and brilliant-looking armour sets out there, it also has a niche in providing the highest Immunity of any set in Elden Ring.

Physical: 13.1 VS Strike: 15.3 VS Slash: 5.7 VS Pierce: 11.4
Magic: 28.9 Fire: 11.3 Lightning: 28 Holy: 28.2
Immunity: 243 Robustness: 57 Focus: 214 Vitality: 181
Poise: 11 Weight: 12.1

The Mushroom Set's focus on Immunity makes it an unironically useful set to switch to whenever you need resistance to poison or Scarlet Rot - which can be quite often in Elden Ring. So if you're planning to pass through Aeonia Swamp in Caelid or the vast Lake Of Rot beneath Liurnia, the Mushroom Set is a great thing to take with you.

How to get the Mushroom Armor Set:

The base Mushroom Set is acquired in Seethewater Cave in Mt Gelmir. You'll need two Stonesword Keys to unlock this cave, but once you do, you can retrieve the set from a cavern guarded by a Giant Poison Flower and various other fungal enemies.

However, the Mushroom Set also has a second helmet option - the Mushroom Crown - which actually provides even more Immunity than the Mushroom Head does. To find the Mushroom Crown, head to the far south-east corner of the Lake of Rot, and climb the ruins there. You'll find a corpse overhanging the edge of a pillar. Loot this corpse to obtain the Mushroom Crown.

The player in Elden Ring stands in front of the camera wearing the Drake Knight armour set. Behind them is a view of the Altus Plateau.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

Drake Knight Set

If you want some true dragon armour in Elden Ring, the sturdy and distinctive Drake Knight Set is likely to be your best option.

Physical: 24.7 VS Strike: 19.6 VS Slash: 25.8 VS Pierce: 24.7
Magic: 22.1 Fire: 24.7 Lightning: 19 Holy: 22.1
Immunity: 60 Robustness: 110 Focus: 50 Vitality: 50
Poise: 40 Weight: 22

This late-game armour set provides solid physical and magical protection without being overly heavy. It offers good slashing and piercing resistance, which is very useful for certain challenging late-game enemies. But mainly, it's just a great set of armour for players who want to look as extravagant as possible.

How to get the Drake Knight Armor Set:

The Drake Knight Set can be found within Crumbling Farum Azula - a section of the map you only unlock near the game's ending. Once you reach the Great Bridge, head in the opposite direction to the Draconic Tree Sentinel and the boss room. Head through the building on the other side, and from the north-east corner of the balcony, drop down onto the ledge below guarded by the Beastman.

From there, take the lift down, and turn left after exiting through the door. Follow the path round and you'll find a large chest containing the Drake Knight Armor Set.

Highest poise armor in Elden Ring

As of writing, the highest poise armor in Elden Ring is the Bull-Goat set with an impressive poise of 100.

The Bull-Goat set also happens to be the heaviest set in the game, so if you're looking for a lighter alternative but with a still impressive poise count, consider the Fire Prelate Set with a poise count of 96 or the Omen Set with a respectful 91.

The most significant change to armor stats since release has been the Elden Ring 1.07 patch. During this, most armor sets in the game were given an increase to their poise stats. Even so, the Bull-Goat set remains the best choice poise-wise if you want to tank hits.

Highest focus armor in Elden Ring

As of writing, the highest focus armor in Elden Ring is either the Fire Prelate Set or Mushroom Set with a focus of 215 each.

This offers a nice choice for players as the Mushroom Set caters for players that prefer lightweight armor, whereas the Fire Prelate Set is both robust, heavy and offers a high poise stat.

Focus is an important attribute in Elden Ring as it determines your defence against certain effects like madness and sleep. These attributes can be further improved by levelling up your Mind stat.

Other options that offer a high focus level are the Astrologer Set with a focus of 201 and the Azur's Glintstone Set with a respectible 204.

That wraps up this comprehensive guide to the best armour sets you can find in Elden Ring, and where to get your hands on each one. If you're looking for a helping hand on what to do next in Elden Ring or how far along you are in the game's story, check out our Elden Ring walkthrough. And if you're looking for more ways to increase your survivability, be sure to check out our guides on how to upgrade your flasks with Golden Seeds and Sacred Tears.

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Ollie Toms

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Ollie is sheriff of Guidestown at RPS, and since joining the team in 2018, he's written over 1,000 guides for the site. He loves playing dangerously competitive games and factory sims, injuring himself playing badminton, and burying his face in the warm fur of his two cats.