Dark Souls DLC Boss Fights Walkthrough

Dark Souls DLC: Boss Fights Walk-through

By Veritas

The Dark Souls DLC is finally out for consoles as well as the patch that nerfs and buffs a lot of favorites. This guide assumes you have some working knowledge of the game. We also assume you are prepared to die.

Getting Started With Dark Souls DLC

The Dark Souls DLC areas are not immediately available for new characters. You must have cleared up to Anor Londo and have acquired and placed the Lordvessel. Placing the Lordvessel will remove the yellow pale blocking the entrance to the Duke’s Archives which is where you will find the key to access the new content. You should clear the Dusk of Oolacile section by killing the Hydra in the lake and destroying the golem that encases Dusk before going to the archives.

Make your way to the Duke’s Archives and save at the bonfire, if you wish. Go to the elevator ahead and engage it. You will encounter the familiar Crystal Soldiers here and they are as pesky as ever. In addition, you will find a Crystal Golem hanging out in the landing before going into the library. This enemy has the key you need to access the new areas. Once you kill him, he drops the Broken Pendant. Return to the bonfire again and Warp somewhere close to the lake where you killed the Hydra. Make your way to the back of the lake. There you will Dusk’s gear and you will see a black cloud hanging out in mid air. Examine it and a giant, deformed black hand will emerge to whisk you away to the Oolacile of the past.

Activate, and kindle if you want, the bonfire in this cave and proceed up the tunnel to the fog door. If you wish, you can apply your buffs here and set your Quick Bar. Behind the fog lies the first boss of the Dark Souls DLC and it cannot wait to kill you.

dark souls

Dark Souls The Sanctuary Guardian

The first new boss starts off the console DLC with a roar. It sports a lion’s head and body, two big horns, four massive wings and a venomous scorpion tail covered in spikes. Note his fast movements and ferociousness as the following bosses only increase in intensity.

Dark Souls Tactics For The Sanctuary Guardian

Mobility is a must in this battle. The boss is fast and its attacks will drain your stamina in a blink if you are trying to turtle it up. We suggest under 50% load rolls and a shield with good stability. Lightning protection and Purple Moss are also helpful. As with almost every boss, fire is not its friend. If you are unsure of your rolling skills, you might bring twenty flasks upgraded as high as possible.

As soon as you cross the fog gate, keep your shield up or be ready to roll away from the incoming attack. Sanctuary Guardian usually says “hi” with one to four high-speed lingering lightning shots (think the blue drakes in Valley of the Drakes) that deal a good amount of damage if your equipment is not optimized for lightning defense (Silver Knight, Havel’s, etc.) or if you are going with low vitality. You will be fighting in shallow water which seems to make the electricity go on a while. The water is not deep enough to need the Rusted Iron Ring.

The boss continues with an airborne attack if you are far away. When it does take to the air, you can expect two different attacks: a lightning shot or a swooping attack. The lightning attack has the guardian gliding sideways and tracks well so timing your rolls properly will see you through the floating cloud of hurt. The swooping attacks have a vertical lift off with the giant horns coming at you fast. This can be blocked but it knocks you to the front and side of the boss. The end of the attacks leaves the boss open for attacks to its hind legs so rolling out and chasing it is best. It also lowers its tail, which can be cut off for a weapon, the Guardian’s Tail Whip. Look out for an Armored Boar-style rear kick and the poisonous tail. We experienced instant poisoning every time we were hit with the tail swipe, even with the Bloodshield.

On The Ground Dark Souls Strategy

When on the ground, Sanctuary Guardian has various attacks. The aforementioned volley of one to four shots of lightning are not the only attacks to drain your stamina. The boss also releases a charge up shot telegraphed by its flying away and bringing in its wings. The folding in of the wings and lowering of the head when in close range mean a Breath Attack. This attack can drain your stamina in one shot but its limited area does allow for rolling out of the way, which we recommend, as he follows up with a nasty head butt once your stamina is gone. As the boss rears slightly and its wings bend slightly up, you can expect a melee attack. Watch carefully as there are two melee attacks to worry about. It will snap its jaws at you twice if the head comes forward first. If it shifts its weight as the head moves forward, you can expect four swipes of its massive paws. These attacks can be blocked but its better to roll backwards and follow with a counterattack to its ugly mug. If you get close to its front legs, the guardian does a quick stomp with a front paw so be ready to roll.

Dark Souls Healing

We suggest healing only when on the side of the boss as its long range attacks are fast and powerful. If you can get to its side and have time to attack, you have time to heal. It is possible to use the heal miracle, but due to its slow casting time, we suggest flasks instead as there is nothing to use for cover like in the Ornstein and Smough fight. To make the fight short, you should keep the pressure on as much as possible. It cuts back on his lightning volleys if you force him to melee. As with every tough boss, patience is key as its constant gap producing jumps wil be a drain on your stamina. There is a bonfire immediately after the boss so feel free to go all out.

You get the Guardian Soul upon victory with which you can make a boss weapon.

Artorias of the abyss

Dark Souls Artorias of the Abyss

For beginner and intermediate players, or those out of practice, this fight is an intense clinic of last millisecond rolls. We recommend a less than 50% load for sure, although you might consider dropping to below 25% load for the extra invincibility frames allowed by the nerfed Dark Wood Grain Ring. We also suggest your hardest hitting fast weapon, one that can stun is useful but not necessary. After the first taste, we just gave up on blocking and went with dodging but it is possible to block his attacks, although stamina management becomes ever more important with this approach. If you decide to block, Artorias’ attacks all cause physical damage so bring a shield with 100% Physical and the highest stability you can get (we used the Silver Knight Shield since it’s cheaper to upgrade.) Bring Green Blossoms, the Grass Crest Shield, Mask of the Child or the Cloranthy Ring. Anything that will keep your stamina up might just save your life. The effects of all these items stack so if you are having trouble you might consider using them all. Power Within does not drain with the level of your flame anymore so it is a viable option for extra damage.

Artorias will squat low and scream, telling you that his jump attack is coming. He leaps a good twenty feet in the air and comes down hard with his Greatsword for massive damage. Hold still and roll only at the very last second as this attack tracks very well. When in close range, expect anywhere from three to six fast attacks aimed at your head. He mixes up horizontal and vertical attacks so it is vital to watch his sword. He does not linger long posed after a missed attack so it is best to let him finish the combo before attacking as he might just do a roundhouse slash if you are too close to him. He will at times throw in his piercing attack wherein he propels forward looking to impale you on his sword. Again, the tracking on this is very tight so hold your roll as long as possible and look for the opening for one quick hit followed by a roll away.

Attacking Dark Souls Artorias

Trying to attack from the back is always a good plan but Artorias is ready for that. Stay on his back long enough and he will unleash a couple of varied attacks that are difficult to predict. He might swing his disabled left arm and shower you with the black ooze coming off him. This can be blocked at a cost of a good portion of your stamina. He will also swing and spin upwards causing damage and creating distance, maybe following with a devastating stinging attack. His stinging attacks vary as well. A slow walk will accompany the less damaging hit while a run tells you the long range eviscerating thrust is coming.

Dark Souls Timing Against Artorias

It is his chaining of attacks that might make the fight difficult. He reacts to your aggressiveness very well. If you are constantly on him, he will do lots of roundhouse attacks similar to the ones used by Sif, although luckily with a smaller range. He will also slam his sword repeatedly and the splash damage of this attack can build up quickly. When you see him jump towards you and do a complete flip in mid air, he is coming down with his multiple slam attack. This is usually a three part attack of successive slams that track you very closely and punish you severely if you attempt a counter attack in between. If you do not want to end up on the ground, it is best to let him finish all three attacks.

When he does a back roll, close in on him but watch out for a swiping attack. He is trying to keep you at a distance so he can do his power up. If you see him do two backward rolls in a row, he is getting ready to do his buff and you may start running towards him as this is a good time to attack. He can be stunned out of his power up if your weapon hits hard enough. If you cannot break his poise, save enough stamina to roll away as the ensuing explosion will do lots of damage and possibly kill you.

Stick to rolling and select your attacking times carefully and Artorias will fall. The scream that marks his death might be in your nightmares for a while. You get the Soul of Artorias for your win. You can use it to make a unique boss weapon or give it to Lord Blade Ciaran and she will give you her weapons. Those of you going with Dexterity characters should definitely get her weapons as they scale A and S in Dex and have the Bleed Effect.

black dragon kalameet

Dark Souls Black Dragon Kalameet

Black Dragon Kalameet is an optional boss in the Dark Souls DLC and can only be fought after meeting certain requirements. You must trigger the fly by of Kalameet near the waterfall and then return to Hawkeye Gough who will ground the dragon for you. After Hawkeye clips the dragon’s wing, return to the basin to fight Kalameet. You may go down the ladder or look around and fall down the ledges, on one of which you will find a Crystal Lizard. This will cause some of that fall damage we all know and love but you will have plenty of time to heal before Kalameet makes it over to you.

Know Thy Dark Souls Enemy

As with the other boss fights, mobility helps a lot as well as a high stability shield. All of Kalameet’s attacks deal pure physical damage. You can cut his tail off to obtain the Obsidian Greatsword. Stamina is very useful as well as buffs. We found that weapons that had vertical attacks (Halberds/Greatswords) made getting the tail just a little bit easier but it can be cut with any weapon.

The dragon shoots a yellow lined black flame which deals heavy physical damage. When he is straight ahead of you, you will see him plant his forelegs and lower his head as he shoots a straight column of flame. You can block it or you can roll to the side. If you spot it in time, try running to his neck as he releases the fire for a couple of solid hits. When he sprints away from you and quickly turns, he will release a long curving flame that will sweep across the screen. It is possible to block as well as roll out of the way and move in for hits for the duration of the attack. Kalameet will at times fly straight up and shoot the flame at the ground, covering a large circular area. If you see him fly vertically, take is as your cue to run or start rolling away immediately; three or four rolls should get you out of the area and give you time to heal while he finishes the attack.

Dark Souls Black Dragon Kalameet Melee Attacks

His melee attacks will try to keep you out of close range. Watch for his head clearly pulling to one side and roll away as it snaps back across his body. Note if it is left to right, or viceversa, as he usually follows with the same attack from the opposite direction. He will also snap his jaws at you and throw in some claw swipes if you are very close to his legs. If you see him rear up his front legs, he quickly follows with a stomp from his back legs and you do not want to be near that. The fight is very similar to Sif’s although Kalameet seems more aggresive. Finally, he often does a swiping tail attack to push you off as he jumps away and resumes his flame spam or swooping attacks.

Kalameet will raise his front legs and sit on his ass as he releases either of the following attacks. He sits up in this “begging” position, his wings open up slightly and he releases a blast of the black flame. He takes the same stance but closes his wings in and the red jewel on his forehead will start to shine, a loud feedback like screech will sound as he releases a concentrated ray of red light directly in front of him. This is the Calamity Ray and if you get caught on it, you will be plagued with a nasty debuff: every hit you take while in this state will cause double the damage. Your character will display a small red orb above his head when this debuff is active. If you wish to spice up the fight, let Kalameet trap you in this ray. As he does either attack, you can roll to the side and run to his tail for a quick attack. His swooping attack is easy to predict but it is a little deceptive so delay your roll a beat longer than normal. After this swooping attack, there is a chance at his tail, although the distance to cover can make this very challenging. We experienced better results attacking the base of the tail, often removing it in one or two attacks, somewhere around 600 to 1,000 damage. Most of the time, getting that tail involved chasing him quite a bit before succeeding.

Dark Souls Reward

Defeating Kalameet will give you the Calamity Ring. This ring causes any strike by an enemy to deal twice the damage. If you are into challenging runs, this is a must have. Combine this with the Curse affliction and a level 1 run to truly test your skills.

*Note: If you are thinking of running up the ladder and sniping Kalameet with arrows, we would advise against it unless your bow is doing more damage than your other weapons. Kalameet can aim his flame up the ladder as well as jump high enough to shower you in flame. The damage caused versus the damage taken made this a losing proposition for us. Of course, it might be a fun challenge for those who have mastered the bow.

manus father of the abyss

Dark Souls Manus, Father of the Abyss

The fourth and final boss of the DLC. You must defeat him to rescue Princess Dusk. If you were able to rescue puppy Sif earlier in the level by following the ethereal young Alvina, you will find Sif’s summon sign on the ground during the fight with Manus. Sif can often distract Manus long enough for you to heal or apply a buff. Manus seems more preoccupied with you so watch him carefully and roll away far enough to heal or buff if Sif is not distracting him long enough. Also, the Silver Pendant can shield you from the dark magic attack with which Manus likes to blanket the area but it is not obligatory. Same as the other fights, a medium to light roll is strongly advised and do not forget your best shield.

Dark Souls Manus

Manus’ massive left hand will rise in the air and black lines of magic will engulf it, producing a tornado like visual as the arm stretches, and he will slam his whole arm down across the floor in front of him towards you. The tracking on this is fairly tight but not unavoidable. This big attack has a big recovery time as well so we suggest rolling out and making the most of it by attacking his downed arm, the body or even the tail (Manus’ tail cannot be cut off.) He will raise his arm in a similar fashion for another attack but instead of slamming down the arm, he will jump and land palm first. This is a quick attack with a short recovery time and is best avoided.

If you see him squat down briefly, move off and prepare to dodge as he launches his jump attack. You can clearly see him jumping but the deceptive delay and the splash damage from the paw demand a precise roll to avoid damage. Manus will drag his left hand across the ground as he releases his uppercut which you definitely need to avoid or block. The second most dangerous of his melee attacks involves both his arms. He will attack with the left tornado paw but follow up with an attack from the spiky staff in his right hand. He will also lead with the staff but instead of coming back with the left hand, he will do a backswing with the staff. This attack is a little difficult to predict and the fast speed of the swings makes rolling very tricky. Your best bet would be to just roll back and away, perhaps heal and wait for a better opening. The deadliest of his melee attacks is a devastating, possibly fatal combo. He will roar, tilt his head up and bare his chest then swipe his arms across in an attempt to grab you. Once he gets a hold of you, he repeatedly slams you into the ground and then jumps on you. If your life bar is full enough, you may survive long enough to heal. Keep a distance while he finishes the animation of four fast swipes. If you get caught and survive, you will have some time to heal.

The Dark Souls Silver Pendant

If you took the time to find the Silver Pendant in Oolacile Township, it will pay off when dealing with his magic attacks. He will stand straight and rear his left arm back, snapping it forward and throwing black magic orbs at you. His second magic attack has him raising the staff in his right hand as a shower of dark magic falls on the arena. However, his most dangerous magic attack comes when he jams the staff on the ground and magic flies up, out and then runs back to the staff in a shrinking circle; the magic never actually returns to the staff. Do not roll back during this attack as the black magic returning to the staff will meet you at the end of your roll. Instead, run towards him and attack him. Activating the Silver Pendant (which should be in your Quick Bar) will protect you from the attacks. If you do not have the pendant, just do your best to roll out of the area of effect and brace for the extending arm attack before closing the distance.

Dark Souls Completed NG+

For your troubles, you receive the Soul of Manus and you save Princess Dusk. Manus’ Soul can be used to make a catalyst with a nasty physical attack or can be traded with Snuggly in Undead Asylum for a magic spell.

Good job, hero! Now kill them again in NG+. Equip the Calamity Ring to show FromSoftware you are not scared. Above all, keep playing the game and contributing to this crazy Dark Souls community and get ready for Dark Souls 2 after reviewing the Top 3 Changes in the Dark Souls DLC Artorias Of The Abyss.


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