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A Review of Every Dark Souls Boss

Nintendo games on steam deckwarzone steam deck DARK SOULS™ III review so today I thought Id do something a little different and something that many of you have probably never seen before a critical analysis style video on Dark Souls Im sure nobody has ever done anything like that before Music every Dark Souls boss and that is not an exaggeration that means all the main bosses all the optional bosses all the secret bosses all the way through Dark Souls one two three including all the DLC disclaimer their channels entirely sustained off of Dark Souls content that have been going for a year is going sanely in depth to the most specific things in this series and do it with effortless style and grace there is simply way more talented people than me doing great work on Dark Souls I want to clarify that because Im probably going to unintentionally sound like Im quoting verbatim in this video because of the sheer volume and influence of Dark Souls content on this site already now with that petty excuse out of the way lets get to the basics before we start with the individual reviews I want to lay down the basics of Dark Souls bosses and some ground rules moving forward most Dark Souls bosses can be split into different categories with some mixing together two or more to create a more dynamic fight and its most basic they are ranged and melee beyond that there is large and small and beyond that there is single or multiple this is the most basic possible interpretation but it helps to describe how each boss works on a mechanical level range versus melee mostly affects defense it changes how the player is either going to dodge or block incoming attacks a ranged boss is usually doing magic or fire attacks which means the player either needs a high magic defense shield or would be better off dodging and blocking the hit a melee boss instead would usually be much more aggressive and attention-grabbing than a ranged boss demanding much more careful dodging or blocking to avoid being hit by follow-up attacks the enemies size usually affects the attack style the player should take an engagement a large enemy size although visually more intimidating is usually the easier from mechanical perspective because that size can be abused attacks are slower and the player can use their smaller size to hide in places that can easily avoid the slow sweeping attacks of larger bosses smaller bosses typically into being the more challenging of the two they are closer to the player inside so the player cant as easily abuse their relative size and their attacks are quicker these bosses require a much more passive and defensive play style instead of aggression its more about learning their attacks and how to counter them rather than all-out DPS and finally weve got numbers single bosses are usually the easier of the two for most players because they only have one boss at a time to contend with but the game balances this by making boss fights with multiples weaker individually which is the players route to success sometimes this ends up being their fatal flaw other times the sheer power of their attacks are enough to override the weakness of low health these basic categories are the foundation of Dark Souls boss design each boss is like hitting the slot machine on each of these to see what you end up with takes if for example and you can see how she fits into a few of these categories shes a melee boss so the primary defense of the player is about dodging close-range attacks shes quite a large boss so the best offense for the player is to abuse the large size to get in close and avoid strikes and shes a single so a player does not have to worry about another adversary to take into consideration most bosses can fit neatly into these categories and effects the most basic interaction and tactics needed to take them down then there is a huge caveat that this is a role-playing game with a stupid amount of weapons and tactics that I cannot reasonably discuss in one video youve got straight swords curved swords thrusting swords great swords curved great swords Ultra great swords daggers katanas axes great axes hammers great hammers fists and claws spears hell Birds Reapers whips bows in the nav Academy Raquels to sorceries and each category has multiple weapons each all with their own moves and each one of these can affect how a boss plays in pre substantial ways from an ultra great sword being much more effective for Deacons of the deep - a katana with bleed damage being the most effective against the abyss Watchers I mention this because Im going to be talking in more general terms with these bosses mostly theyre movesets and unique elements that separate them from others instead of specific tactics Ill mention some of those when they come up but I will mostly not be commenting on how certain weapons effects certain bosses but know that that is a whole other level of fair criticism and analysis to make here that I will mostly be ignoring for the sake of brevity I also feel I should mention my experience with the series to avoid mentions of comparisons with games in the series I have not played unfortunately I do not have experience with the whole overarching Souls Bourne series that I like to have when making these videos I have played Dark Souls 1 through 3 obviously a few times but I dont have any experience with Demon Souls or blood-borne so while comparisons may be extremely obvious and valid with those games I wont be voicing them because I have no first-hand experience with them so ground rules out of the way lets start with Dark Souls 1 a tutorial boss should rather be judged on what essentials it can teach the player then how difficult it will be for returning players like myself its easy to write this boss off as just the tutorial boss as any advanced player should have absolutely no trouble dispatching them the generous arena slow sweeping attacks and easily abusable size make this an extremely slow and deliberate boss thats one of the easiest if not the easiest to dodge in the entire game on how well it teaches a player Id say its decent its most dramatic teaching tool is that its the first instance of a plunging attack in the game and shows that it can do incredible damage if performed correctly but plunging attacks are pretty underutilized in the overall game so that really only comes in handy very occasionally and in use against the next boss the problem is that this boss is so slow and passive that it doesnt really teach the player how to fight regular enemies either really its most useful lesson to teach is how to deal with large enemies hide at their backside weather mostly front facing attacks can be avoided much easier its an OK boss all things considered its design is pretty intimidating early on in the first bit where you were supposed to run away from it is a solid moment of panic but mechanically its nothing too special the Taurus demon is a bit of a weird mashup between a couple of unique boss design ideas theres the pre boss fight action to perform of killing the two archers on top of this tower the idea is that dealing with them in the middle of the fight is much harder than killing them before and its basically teaching you about the plunging attack again just like the last boss except doing it over and over again this time the optimal strategy for most players is to run back to the tower and do a plunging attack and then run to the other side of the bridge and baton attack long enough to where you can climb up the ladder again and then wince and repeat you can fight him straight up but the narrow pathway of the bridge and the awkwardly slow and powerful attacks make this a pretty challenging fight early on if you do it that way also if you use the gold pine resin picked up back in the undead burg it makes this fight much easier I tend not to use resins because I think it makes boss fights way too easy but this one seems to have been placed deliberately for this fight so it does warrant a mention its a decent fight mostly because of the gorgeous arena but the design is a bit weird for this early in the game the first genuinely good boss I think is the gargoyles which have become famous for road blocking many players from ever finishing the game its the first multi boss fight in a series when a second gargoyle shows up at the first reaching half health its a genuinely scary and panic inducing moment that destroys the players confidence just when they think theyve started to get the upper hand the thing with this fight though is that its illustrative of a larger issue with the first Dark Souls in particular the lock-on system is busted in the first game not the camera movements when locked on those are very solid and reliable just as with later games the problem is how it restricts your rolling Dark Souls does have Omni rolling but not when locked onto an enemy when locked on you can only roll in four directions forwards backwards or left or right this means that moving the stick to the top-left corner for example will have a 50/50 chance of rolling forward or left its unreliable its clunky and I think it makes many of the boss fights much more difficult than they would be otherwise look at this footage of me not using the lock-on you have a much freer range of movement not only being able to Omni roll to more adeptly dodge incoming attacks but have much easier positioning available to you as well without using the lock-on the gargoyles are a much more approachable challenge and one of the more exciting and thrilling fights in the game dealing with two powerful bosses at once the challenge of fighting multiple enemies is dependant on keeping both targets in view fading out both their attacks and maintaining enough distance not to get overwhelmed its a different type of challenge its not solely about learning how to counter an enemies move set but also a challenge of intense situational awareness and timing the two gargoyles have different move sets that means you wont be completely overwhelmed with melee attacks the first gargoyle has incredible range with wide sweeping strikes its better to get as close as possible to avoid the majority of the wide swings in the second gargoyle most often breathes fire and a cone in front of him these two styles of attacks make it challenging but not unfair to fight both at once the optimal strategy is to separate the two of them long enough for the player to sneak a few hits in between the gargoyles in many ways are the gatekeepers to most players enjoyment of the game and a series in general not only do they mark the first real step in progress by ringing the first bell of awakening but they serve as a climactic peak to the first section of the game I just wish the game thought its players better to use the lock on more sparingly instead of becoming totally reliant on it this boss sucks surprising absolutely no one that Capra demon is one of the worst bosses in the game with lazy and unbalanced design youre trapped in a tiny room with two of the most Awkward and fast enemies in the game to deal with at the same time as the boss the beginning of this fight is a total crapshoot best thing to do is to run to the top of the stairs and pray to whatever gods you believe in that you can kill the dogs before the onslaught of attacks overwhelms you if you can kill the dogs and the fight is basically over you can either repeat the plunging attack strategy for the third time or fight him normally both are pretty easy the only attack dont watch out for is the two-handed swipe which can easily one-hit kill you at this point in the game otherwise the attacks are very generously telegraphed and easy to avoid he doesnt have a lot of health either the first half of Dark Souls is often regarded as brilliant and close to perfect and I generally agree except for this fight and miss area the first truly large boss and Dark Souls is more visually and thematically successful than it is mechanically its design is one of the most memorable of the series and truly representative of the depths the area the boss resides in all mashed together dragon and crocodile split open down the middle and covered in teeth the sheer size can be intimidating as health bar is madness for this early in the game mechanically its OK for a large boss easy enough to hide on its side to avoid most of the front facing attacks most of its attacks are pretty straightforward except for this walk which basically turns its whole body into damage on contact on a dime it does way too much damage for how little its telegraphed and its an easy way to get killed it can be a weird fight because youll be hacking away at it for minutes only to suddenly die instantly from this random attack otherwise most of its attacks are easily avoidable jumps and slow sweeps from the head of the dragon it also has this attack where it spews out something that slows the players movement but it doesnt last long enough for it to be all that notable its a decent fight because of its visual design but it isnt anything spectacular mechanically Quelaag is the first single boss encounter in the game that really shines in as design this flight isnt a huge open arena which appears to be in the players favor at first the interesting thing with this fight is that quelaag will regularly be spraying patches of lava all over the arena to limit the players arena size it becomes a spatial challenge of a constantly evolving and shifting arena quail eggs attacks make abusing her size and front-facing attacks the most optimal strategy her horizontal sword swings are wide and extremely fast making them very difficult to dodge they also do fire damage which means that blocking them with most shields will still inflict a decent amount of damage her horizontal swings have relatively short range but she also has a long distance thrust that can catch you off-guard when trying to heal or maintain distance but the most threatening attack by far is the AoE blast that does immense damage and can easily one-shot at a fair level at this point the problem with this attack is that it isnt all that well telegraphed the most dramatic sign being quail on herself laying down to the front of the spider but if the player is busy hacking away at the side then the wind up to this attacks looks very similar to the front facing a lava attack which is totally safe for the player at this position its very easy to get caught off-guard by this attack and even after beating this boss God knows how many times before it still got me a couple of times on this playthrough Quelaag also serves as the second climactic fight ending your journey underground through the depths and Blighttown to bring the second bell of awakening after the two bells of awakening have been rung the gate descends fortress opens where the iron golem resides the iron golem is a massive boss in size done a little differently than the animal like bosses up to this point the iron golem wields an ax with very generously telegraphed attacks instead of thrashing and AoE attacks like the gaping dragon and Quelaag before it the thing that really makes this fight challenging is that tiny arena and the huge knock back of attacks I am terrible at this fight and honestly considered one of the harder in the game I got lucky this playthrough but I normally get killed a few times laughs from getting knocked off by one unlucky dodge the iron golem also has a ranged attack where he throws a blast of air from his axe that can easily catch you off-guard this fight is an x-factor that makes it unique among any other fight in the game and thats that the small arena can work in your favor as well once the golem reaches around 75% health he will stumble for a few seconds if you could stack enough damage during this time he will completely fall over and if hes close enough to the edge hell go right off and end it right there I wasnt able to do it for this fight because once again I am really bad at it its pretty decent all things considered Music Music the classic the big one the infamous fight to define the first Dark Souls what else can be said about this fight whenever most players think of Dark Souls this is probably the image in their mind or encinas smile are the peak of the first half of Dark Souls and the peak of the game in my opinion this is a beautiful impeccably well-balanced and exciting boss fight and without a doubt the best in the base game once even smells movesets synchronized perfectly to make them an incredible challenge oran seeing a swift agile and has both ranged and fast swiping close-range attacks that make him a threat and absolutely any area of the arena Mao is slow bumbling but hits hard and extremely deadly at close range like the gargoyles before them the main challenge is to keep both in vision simultaneously and bait our attacks to sneak in some quick damage only this time that is significantly more challenging the gargoyles were both pretty slow and the second gargoyles moves were limited and easy to avoid the generous arena and numerous pillars are really your only defense the rest is down to patience rigorous situational awareness and timing your dodges and attacks or seated smell or a huge difficulty spiked for first-time players and will lay ruin two players caught in the unfortunate traps of shield or lock-on reliance and yet it gets even tougher this is the first boss fight in the game with a second stage that amplifies this boss to sheer madness difficulty levels for new players when one of them Falls the other will absorb their power and regain full health as well as a new move set with even more powerful attacks its definitely easier to kill Ornstein first as he is without a doubt the more challenging of the two in his second form in their second form they will gain some of the moves of their fallen comrade smells attacks will become electrified and Ornstein gains the ground slam from smell with an electrical wave that pulses around the impact the second stage is unpredictable and arguably even more challenging in the first phase because of the beefed up attacks mistakes become even riskier just as the players supplies are dwindling I cant do much other than gush about this fight I think its a multi boss fight done about as perfectly as it can only faulted by the Dark Souls one core mechanics like the busted lock-on system and a lack of collision detection its at this point that the game opens up from a primarily linear structure and splits off into four major paths as well as a wealth of optional bosses and areas for the player to tackle in any order so far I have tried to structure this in chronological order but from this point on its basically in the order that I played them the moonlight butterfly is less of a boss and more of a showcase of unique enemy design indicative of the area it resides in the dark route forest all this flight really consists of mechanically is dodging or blocking its projectiles and waiting for it to land to score huge damage I normally like the unique boss fights in the series even though they often arent as satisfying as a more conventional fight but this one is pretty dull cool visuals lacking design the saddest boss in a series sift the great gray wolf guards his master Artorius is grave from robbers as eternal loyalty for whats supposed to be more of a more showcase instead of a mechanics focus boss fight SIF is no pushover shes one of the toughest bosses in the game for shield heavy players because her combos can easily punch through late-game stamina bars and they have far reach and speed to match it sifts weakness is her size and her front-facing sword attacks by getting underneath her you can avoid most of the sword strikes and get in some free hits the challenge is how agile she is she will constantly be jumping around the arena which means that learning how to dodge through her strikes is the primary challenge the end of the fight is a memorable heartbreaker SIF will actually limp and her attacks become awkward as she stumbles around feeling weak the real gut punch is remembering sifts purpose in the first place all she wanted to do was guard her masters grave who sacrificed himself to protect her despite it being just okay mechanically SIF is one of the more memorable boss fights in the series for this reason its a fight that manages to use both lore and its own mechanics to tell a story weve looked at one boss previously that served as an early game dps check but the four kings taking that idea and take it to the extreme four kings is literally four kings all of whom spawn in one after the other after a certain amount of time fighting one is difficult enough with their incredible damage output range and slow-moving magic attacks that will completely circle the arena if dodged they are designed specifically to be difficult to fight in multiple so burning them down as fast as you can is the priority its no coincidence that the very large ember from maxing out weapon upgrades is found in this area their attacks are slow and dont have a huge amount of tracking on them so once you can close the gap it isnt all that difficult to burn them down but closing that gap can be mighty difficult with their insane range and absurd damage mechanically its one of the hardest fights in the game and pretty well designed on top of that fighting in a black void at the bottom of a corrupted hole in the world makes for a suitably atmospheric experience as well one of the most complex and well-defined characters in the lore unfortunately doesnt get the best fight the game gets points for doing something interesting with the format though the first time most players wont counter see isnt a supposed to lose room which then spawns the player in a jail cell with a new bonfire instead of where they previously rested its a scary moment that makes the player feel really vulnerable thankfully the snakes are the worst guards ever and you can encounter him later in the crystal caves for a proper fight I havent talked about boss runs too much so far because I feel that it would bleed into a larger discussion on the level design but the run to seat stands out as being one of the most obnoxious in the entire series requiring the player to run a huge distance and navigate the invisible floors of the Crystal Caves over and over again the fight itself is pretty bland Seath only has a couple of attacks at spraying crystals all over the floor and tail swipes hes one of the easiest bosses in the game to avoid and doesnt have health relative to his size either the fights also unpolished and glitchy because of his sheer size its easy to get trapped against the wall because of his width and get caught in a never-ending loop of crystal attacks its not a very good fight mechanically but the lore and the changes to the format make it bearable a secret boss found by returning to the tutorial area stray demon is a reskin of the asylum demon with a couple of new attacks I dont feel I could be too critical of it because its meant to be a cool bonus of an obscure secret but mechanically its nothing thrilling one of the new attacks is a massive damage a OE attack that is easy to spot but only after seeing it a couple times otherwise he just has increased range in damage it would be a pretty bad fight if it wasnt for the nostalgia of returning to the tutorial area this is another boss that exists more for the Lord than for its mechanics this is a well-defined character with a tragic backstory so it does get points for that but mechanically this is the easiest boss in the game if he run back to the fog door and hit him a few times then its an instant kill a get white exists but its pretty weak a secondary skin of the Asylum Demon only this time a fiery reskin of the stray demon who was itself a reskin of the asylum demon so its starting to get ridiculous at this point his moveset appears to be identical to the straight demon just with a fire AOE instead of magic not much else to say about the same boss again its an okay fight mechanically but using the same boss three times is when it starts to get annoying a very unique fight visually is let down mechanically by awkward cramped space hitboxes and a mostly conventional move set the arena is unique a lava filled swamp with small individual islands to fight on but this ends up backfiring with the awkward flailing and scrambling of the bosses move set in tight spaces the centipede demons move set is also quite limited with easily avoidable stomps and slow deliberate wind ups for its former arm attack he does have a grab which looks scary but doesnt do an insane amount of damage and is very easy to avoid it ends up being mostly okay some cool visuals but nothing really special in terms of mechanics the bed of chaos is the quintessential Dark Souls boss it represents everything thats great about the series like its flawless jumping mechanics brilliant hit detection and falling into pits over and over and over again it really elevates falling into pits into a higher art form I mean never hasnt been done so perfectly and it really represents just how perfect and amazing and inspiring Dark Souls and this boss in particular really is in a brilliant and may I say perfect design choice you even have to run a quarter-mile back every single time you die what fun in another absolutely perfect design choice the actual boss is this little warm thing that dies in one hit it really puts into perspective how all of the careful dodging patience and player skill of other boss fights is totally overrated this this is the peak of Dark Souls right here I could just stop this video here because nothing will be better than this the bed of chaos gets an 11 out of 10 because its perfect and its perfect and did I say its perfect I just wanted to make that clear Priscilla is the only 100% optional boss in Dark Souls residing in a secret area and who the player has to engage first was surprising about this boss being so hidden is that it has a unique mechanic that no other boss has Priscilla can turn invisible and the only way to locate her is to follow her footprints in the snow its genuinely different and interesting and I wish this boss had more health and was expanded into a larger fight as it stands she has the smallest health bar of any boss in the game it goes down too quick to really appreciate the mechanics okay so I lied about that the boss with a smallest health bar is pinwheel who is a well known joke in terms of difficulty same with Priscilla I think this could have been a really good fight if he had more health pinwheel can spawn multiple copies of himself and wields ranged magic attacks generally pretty rare for bosses the presentation of it is also excellent taking place inside a massive tomb decorated with skeletons but man oh man does he go down quick same with Priscilla if this was expanded into a more substantial fight it could have been one of the better ones the final Lord soul in the game I think is the best of the bunch I love that its literally in a hole at the bottom of the two of giants nitos got a unique mechanic of his own besides his usual melee and AoE attacks and thats that his arena is filled with hostile skeletons making it very easy to get swarmed thankfully his damaging wide strikes and powerful AoE will end up killing him for you so the goal is to get him to kill his own backup and then get in some hits before they respawn its an oddly satisfying sort of rhythm its very defensive and time-consuming but also intense with the amount of enemies gradually building until it seems unsustainable the only thing holding it back is a couple of oversights the drop into the arena does a ton of damage which is frankly a little cheap and would be potentially lethal if the player is low on Estus and he has a ranged attack with a knife coming up to the ground that is remarkably inconsistent in hit detection Neto is the one lord sole boss whos more complicated mechanics actually work in his favor instead of becoming an overbearing gimmick the first DLC boss marks a notable step up in quality over the main game the sanctuary Guardian is Stream Li aggressive has multiple forms of ranged and very difficult to dodge melee attacks he can move across the arena in a second can shoot lightning down from the air and charge the player down in seconds attack windows are very brief and healing windows are even less so its a trend that continues with the other DLC bosses of increased aggression and speed compared to the main games lineup the sanctuary Guardian can charge you down in seconds and has some of the trickiest to dodge beast attacks in the game with some surprisingly fast and damaging head swipes and even a tail that can poison you discouraging the usual be strategy of going for the back or the sides Im really bad at this point but I cant deny its unique and solidly designed most peoples favorite fight in Dark Souls 1 seems to be artorias and while I enjoy Ornstein and smell a tiny more personally I cant deny that this is a close second easily Artorius is the most straightforward duel in the entire game his moveset is one of the more varied of any boss a long-range jumping attack front flip hits close range swipes throwing abyss and eventually buffing himself with an AoE that gives all of these attacks substantially improved damage while the move set is great its the speed of artorias that makes this such an intense fight he is the fastest boss in the game and trying to get more than one hit at a time with a moderately fast weapon is almost impossible without taking damage on a follow-up hit the fight is incredibly defensive and requires the most patients of any boss in the game which in a nutshell is what Dark Souls is supposed to be all about if you distill Dark Souls into its basest mechanics it would look something like this beyond the excellent fight mechanically artorias has an important backstory and surprises that enhance the fight even more Artorius is the second of gwens nights you fight directly alongside Ornstein Artorius was sent to stop the spread of the abyss alone and in the present day hes known as a legend who pulled it off but when pulled into the past this Artorius doesnt look like hes capable of conquering anything hes missing his famed great shield and if you look closely his arm is actually broken and dangling the shock of seeing the supposedly jen totally corrupted is memorable and also how the DLC handles Travel the amazing thing about the DLC in this fight in particular is that during the fight you slowly begin to realize that artorias is legend isnt actually his but yours you just dont know it yet the first proper dragon boss in the series is calamy who is restricted to the ground after being pinned by one of hawkeye goes arrows but has considerable size and a varied and threatening move set to make him a challenge worthy of his appearance kalameet has one of the most unique attacks in the series placing a hex on the player with a grab attack that will double damage dealt for a period of time afterwards beyond that hes got his standard fare of swiping and close-range magic attacks but his moveset is surprisingly varied and encompassing unlike most of the other large sized bosses up to this point he is extremely mobile and wont stay in the same position for long as well as having a backwards kick and side attacks to keep most players off guard he can also briefly hover for some forward strike attacks as well as a slow moving AoE fire blast that spreads out to huge distances his head swipe in particular has very tricky timing and its very easy to accidentally get caught by the end of the strike even with a properly timed dodge at the beginning this boss is entirely optional but ends up being one of the absolute best fights in the game and remains one of the stronger dragon boss fights in the series to come the final DLC boss is brutal Manas is without a doubt in my mind the most challenging boss in the first Dark Souls its mostly subjective which boss you find the most challenging but Manas has a few factors that make him a towering challenge for most players first of all he has an insanely long and damaging kill mode that will lock the player in for the remaining amount of damage if hit by a single strike of the combo the strikes are so fast that Ive never been able to avoid every strike while at close range without just spamming the dodge button and getting lucky he also has absurdly powerful dark magic attacks that can easily one-shot a maxed out level character at the peak of their abilities these are near impossible to dodge and can only be reliably avoided with a secret item the silver pendant found behind a fake wall back in Tula seal because this has to be activated from the quick select menu its very easy to get caught off-guard by these attack switching back and forth from Estes to the pendant hes pretty much the combination of everything that makes a boss difficult in this series up to this point high damage obviously but extremely aggressive and wide damaging area of attacks despite the challenge its completely warranted and frankly welcome considering how generally easy most bosses in Dark Souls 1 are compared to the rest of the series the buildup in the surrounding area of the boss is fantastic taking you through the abyss itself and much greater detail than the four kings boss fight to manases visual design vicious difficulty in build up make him the most intimidating boss in the game and by extension one of the best another secret boss thats less of a boss fight really than it is a cool extra for players to find on their second playthrough Gwendoline is the last remaining child of Gwyn to remain in Anor Londo but shares none of the dynastic glory that is told of the family in the lore hes small hes weak and he uses sorcery and arrow is like a regular player would I dont have a lot to say about this fight because of how short and easy it is the one cool element is the arena itself which is basically a room endless in length that keeps shifting every time the player catches up to Gwendolyn his attacks are all ranged and can inflict massive damage but are very easy to avoid and easy to spot after running up to him once or twice hell go down pretty easy a decent addition for the lore but since this is mostly about the mechanics I have to concede that its a little disappointing in that aspect most action RPGs and with an epic climactic battle between two adversaries dramatic orchestral music and a duel on the edge of a cliff during a rainstorm or something of the like what makes the final boss of Dark Souls so brilliant is how understated it is a win is no longer the lord of sunlight hes the lord of cinder a broken old man residing over a crumbling world desperately holding on to whatever shred of life he has left his family is gone his Knights are dead and his kingdom is long fallen but the real tragedy is what it represents for the player if the player links the fire then this is what will eventually become of them Gawain is the ultimate fate of all undead he has gone completely Hollow by keeping the fire burning for so long it has ruined him everything works towards emphasizing this sad and hopeless version of the man who once defeated the ancient dragons the desolate area and final arena the fact that Gwyn is the only boss in the game who can be parried a humiliating showcase of how far his power has fallen in the absolutely legendary score accompanying the fight Music its the best boss team in the game simple but endlessly effective Gwyn is not the most challenging and powerful fight in the game like so many other games well actually he might be if you havent learned how to parry at this point he is extremely aggressive fast and has fire damage that will penetrate most shields but if youve got pairing down then youve gotta wind down and I think that is the most satisfying way to play this boss hes the one boss in the game who is actually more satisfying to completely dominate Dark Souls ends with a different take on a boss fight its not a mechanical peek or the ultimate test of challenges but somber reserved and climactic without being bombastic or epic its a confrontation that doesnt try to make the player feel good for beating a really difficult game but challenges their journey with a close-up of the empty shell they will eventually become Dark Souls is about the last breaths of a dying world Gwyn is one of the absolute greatest bosses in the series for so perfectly reflecting dark souls as core themes grand beauty and despair and ambivalent triumph Music Oh Music Oh all Music Laughter Music Music Music Dark Souls 2 is universally regarded as the weakest souls game but most of these reasons dont seem to be specifically related to the bosses the changes it makes the boss fights are not all that substantial and for the most part the bosses play very similarly to Dark Souls 1 with some improvements and steps back in respective areas I would actually argue that Dark Souls 2 is a better game than the first but that would mostly be down to the level design and combat which this video is not really about when it comes to the bosses Dark Souls 2 is lineup is much more of a mixed bag even compared to Dark Souls 1 and it will seem like I am showcasing Dark Souls 2 at its worst some of the time some of Dark Souls twos worse bosses take place in fantastic areas in vice-versa so this is not a general statement of the games quality but specifically focus on the bosses and the bosses alone along with the occasional comment of the run to the boss when it warrants it the first proper boss from many players is probably the last giant but you can encounter one of Dark Souls 2s more unique bosses first in an optional encounter before the actual set battle for him the pursuers move set and attacks are mostly straightforward horizontal and thrusting attacks a ranged charge and a thrust that can curse you temporarily but what makes him unique is a title himself the pursuer does genuinely pursue and will be encountered multiple times through the rest of the game in innocuous and sometimes unfortunate places he has mostly the same move set and attacks every time but its always a little concerning when he does show up because its completely unexpected its unfortunate that his health doesnt seem to scale enough with the players and what was supposed to be a nemesis that constantly dogs the player throughout the journey ends up becoming a joke after the players beefed up with weapon upgrades and levels hes also able to be parried a welcome change that Dark Souls 2 makes with many of its bosses which does help to make the fight feel a little more dynamic and varied what would be a good but nothing amazing a fight is elevated a little by the unique pursuit that follows the initial fight then weve got the first normal type of fight that comes quite a bit later in the game than the asylum demon in Dark Souls 1 its a shame that its so simple only really having two attacks stomping and swiping the only thing really saving it is the lore implications the last giant is the last giant whose colleagues can be seen dead around the map after they fought in a war before the kingdom fell they do a thing kind of like SIF when he reaches low health hell actually tear his own arm off and use it as a weapon like with a giant tree piercing through his chest its trying to be sad and tragic like SIF but doesnt commit to it with the music or the arena or the deep backstory unfortunately Dark Souls 2 does not give the greatest first impression with one of its least remarkable bosses in the whole lineup so early in the game Dragon Rider is a pretty standard fight with some interesting level design elements that give the fight a bit of uniqueness if you wipe out all of the enemies on this map and pull a couple of hidden switches it will raise the outer circle of the arena and make the fight easier or harder depending on how you see it if you fight him without raising the outer circle its easy to accidentally roll off but also much easier for him to be knocked off as well otherwise its a pretty standard little duel that does its job very slow and telegraphed attacks relatively low health and a huge windows for attack it feels more like a pumped-up normal enemy than a boss really a rematch with Ornstein Solo proves that hes not nearly as threatening without his fat friend to toss you around regardless its a pretty solid fight mechanically although I wish he had more health to make this fight a little more challenging attacks are really fast and have surprising range and they even added some dark magic range spells that can catch you off-guard if he had more health and it was a later game boss with an expanded moveset then this could have been one of the best bosses in the series as it stands it ended up just being kind of okay a double sided amends early-game challenge the flexile century was extremely tough for me on my first playthru because of the heavily damaging long-range combos and the rising water that will eventually make it almost impossible to win without a shield its another dps test to try and burn down the century before the water rises enough to slow down your roll only the century has two sides one wielding two maces and the other swords the sword side is significantly more difficult in a little  __  because there is almost no Telegraph to his attacks one minute nothing the next you are caught up in a flurry of strikes that stun lock you into submission the may side also has a forward thrusting attack that is very deceptively telegraphed the first time you see it the water rises very gradually but if it gets to waist high its pretty much a game over I like it for the time challenge and the unique design I just wish the moves were a little more polished the first triple boss in the series and one of the better ones in Dark Souls 2 the ruined sentinels arent very tough individually but have movesets and weapons that are a nightmare to fight in multiples thankfully the game doesnt just drop you in a pit with all three at once so it allows you to fight one on his own on this little platform with a second and third spawning in later on timers they have very wide range and knock-back which makes using a shield very challenging on this little platform after some time the second will spawn in and will jump up if the first one is not dead then it becomes near impossible to fight on the platform and the third will follow shortly after DPS is king its testing the amount of damage you can output in a certain amount of time once the fight moves below you have a lot more room to maneuver but usually - it wants to deal with this is pretty straightforward and fun just like usual bait out attacks at sneak and damage in-between the only attack I think is unfair is the spin attack which hits so fast consecutively that it seems impossible not to get hit if you are within range I managed to avoid it a couple of times but it was from frantically mangling the Dodge button in pure panic and seemingly getting lucky its too fast as space-out dodge timings otherwise this is a very good fight in a solid escalation of some previous boss design I have a feeling this is going to be the most controversial opinion in this video because I really like the bell for yard oils everybody seems to hate this boss they call it a lazy reskin of the gargoyles just cynically done with five of them instead of two I couldnt disagree more this version of the gargoyles has been smartly tweaked to be a more intense challenge than the ones from the first game which were lets be honest a joke once you disengage the lock on these gargoyles have a way more threatening mood set of extremely fast close-range attacks and long-range sweep from the air but what I enjoy the most about this fight is that change is made to the health and numbers the gargoyles and Dark Souls 1 were fairly strong individually because there was only two of them these gargoyles are much weaker individually but will continuously spawn on timers eventually stacking up to all 5 if you havent managed to kill any its the same dps check idea from the first game only more complicated and more difficult this one taking place later in the game the only problems I have with the fight is that the gargoyles movesets do not synchronize well together and you can easily die in a flurry of close-range attacks if they group up but overall I think the adjustments to the health and numbers are very successful and the main boss of the area is the lost sinner a mostly straightforward duel against a humanoid with a big weapon the fight does have one unique element and thats its lighting there are two torches you can light from outside the arena that will eliminate the boss fight and make it significantly easier if you dont then not only will the fight be much darker but your lock-on will disengage after she does a jumping attack which can easily confuse the player and get them killed and this is dark souls to mine too you wear the lock on actually works otherwise its a solid fight of a pretty standard move set and generous health pool I like this one the executioners chariot is one of the most unique bosses in the series this arena is a circular narrow pathway filled with hostile skeletons and sorcerers all with the chariot himself circling the arena for huge damage if landed the goal is to run to the other side of the arena while avoiding the skeletons and Sorcerers and taking cover in the little alcoves on the side when the chariot makes its pass eventually theres a gate at the and bringing it down will cause the chariot to crash and enter the second stage of the fight from there its a pretty straightforward beast boss fight avoid the charge attacks and kicks and pick away them until its over the horse is pretty slow and not all that threatening so its a little disappointing that the second stage of the fight is so conventional after the more interesting first stage another unique fight like the executioners chariot and although its definitely less imaginative than the chariot it is much more successful mechanically the skeleton Lords is a massive wave of individually weak enemies but potentially deadly together so the goal is to circle the huge arena and pick off a couple skeletons at a time while trying not to get overwhelmed the problem is that the damage they dish out even within a large group is so low that it encourages greedy and sloppy play it becomes far too easy to just storm through all of the incoming blows and take out huge groups with generous time to run away and heal afterwards if something that Dark Souls generally discourages its supposed to be about patience and timing if you ignore this aspect of the fight however its still pretty fun and the boss theme is great Music basically the pinwheel of Dark Souls to the covetous demon is the joke boss and Dark Souls to all he really does is lazily flop around and has maybe the largest attack windows of any enemy in the game the design is interesting a boss with limited movement could have been made unique by using the arena to limit the players movement maybe by having the arena shift periodically to reveal poison traps or something but the end result is well yeah not much to say about this one the area boss of earthen peak matha has an x-factor that can make her one of the most difficult bosses in the series if not discovered first if you go straight into the boss flight then the arena will be filled with poison which will not only constantly deplete your own health but heal her making the fight seem stupidly unfair and poorly designed however if you discover that by setting fire to this metal windmill then it will shut off the poison production in the area and make the boss much more straightforward after doing this its kind of just like fighting a regular enemy the design is unique in AI catching but the fight is one of the most straightforward in the game of avoiding the same three spirit acts and countering she is very passive doesnt follow up attacks quickly and has one of the most pathetic health bars of any boss in this series over the frustratingly limited moveset they had one good idea but it seems like they just left it at that and didnt bother developing the fight any further beyond the basic formatting difference the mid game of Dark Souls 2 is a bit of a slump when it comes to bosses Huntsmans cops and the gutter are some of my favorite levels but many of the bosses are definitely lacking in the mid game royal rat Vanguard compounds this even further it is literally a room full of rats the least threatening enemy in the game all the fight consists of is killing time waiting for the real boss to show up and then he dies in 5 hits yeah once again I give it points for uniqueness but I cant believe this even made it into the game the only good thing I can say about it is that its easy if you are going to have a badly designed boss at least dont make it annoying the final boss of the giant hole in the ground from majulah the rotten is a fantastic boss thematically the big hole in the ground leads to the gutter essentially a trash pit where all of the junk of drangleic is thrown the rotten represents this perfectly essentially is a giant pile of bodies and trash that has become sentient the way they used to heads as eyes is very distinctive mechanically its not amazing but its certainly one of the better ones in the main game hes got the usual fare of swiping as well as AoE and poison spit attacks what does make the fight a little unique is the arena and that there are these fire pits around the boss its supposed to be similar to the lava patches and quelaag but because these fire pits are stationary they end up being mostly ineffective and only an occasional issue mostly its the visual design in the build up that make this boss engaging instead of the mechanics looks a little familiar right skin-deep comparisons aside this fight has its own twist on the spatial challenge of Quelaag instead of lava covering the arena Naga can instead go underneath the sand and spring up for a surprise attack your only refuge is a few stone spots in the arena which will block her from attacking so yes its basically tremors the ideas in this fight I would put on par with Quelaag but the execution is not nearly as sound quelaag was smartly positioned in the early game to be a pretty significant challenge but nazca can be fought pretty close to the end of the game if you do the shaded woods last she just doesnt have enough health plain and simple her attacks are a little tricky with some delayed timings and wind-ups but none of that matters with healing windows as large as this in a health bar as puny as this Nazca is unfortunately guilty of Mis potential theres a very good core mechanic that could have been expanded into a more interesting fight but like so many of this games bosses the ideas end up being stronger than the execution hey kids did you like the Capra demon thats right well step up and meet our new and improved version at the Royal rat authority if you thought two dogs was fun how about four in this time theyre toxic to dying from an overpowered status effects sure is a hoot right this boss is a mess if it werent for the thankfully generous arena this could have been the worst boss in a series dogs have always been an unsatisfying enemy to fight in this series because they have no Telegraph for their attacks they can just jump with no warning and with deceptive range and giving them the ability to inflict toxic is a step too far like the cough redeem in the beginning of this fight is a crapshoot of trying to survive the  __  dogs all with the actual Voss causing trouble as well even trying to run to the other side of the arena and using a bow doesnt really work because they all aggro together once the dogs are dead the fight is just a standard version of a beast boss fight stay on one of his sides and pick away at his ankles thats it he doesnt even have any rear attacks so even after dealing with the annoying dogs the fight isnt even interesting afterwards total garbo trash represents the absolute worst of dark souls2 to me this fight is like the Royal rat vanguard if done properly its a group of smaller enemies and the actual boss surrounded and protected by them but this time they arent all the same enemy with the same attacks the prowling Magus is a spell caster and is surrounded by two others as well as the horde of zombies with melee attacks the prowling Magus has an AoE as well as ranged attacks which means that trying to ignore him in any range is very risky circling around and killing the weaker zombies while avoiding ranged attacks is the real challenge of this fight this would be a really good little boss if it wasnt for the low enemy health its a shame how easy many of the mid game bosses become after upgrading your weapon to a decent level its the opposite problem of the first game where the first half of the game is balanced perfectly because it has to be done in a mostly linear order but then the second half becomes way too easy when all four major bosses can be done in any order here the first half of the game becomes way too easy and then it gets harder later on the design is solid however and that mostly makes up for the poor structuring the Dukes dear Freya is another fantastic fight visually anthem Attica Lee but kind of bland and mediocre mechanically the arena the bottom of a massive cascading spiderweb is beautiful and a 2-headed design of the spider is grotesque and unusual the fight itself mostly consists of running back and forth between the two heads to score damage and avoiding the smaller spiders around the arena unlike the Royal rat Authority these minor enemies are so weak and ineffective that they are barely even worth mentioning so they arent a major annoyance the fret itself is the real concern whose attacks are unpredictable and extremely damaging its forward thrust has deceptive timing and wide range and it can even shoot a laser just with very generous telegraphing and wind up but none of this can be feared from a boss as passive as this huge damage and costly mistakes are part of the darksouls formula but it only works if follow-up attacks make healing a risky proposition the Freya is content to sit around and wait patiently only doing an attack when it can be asked its this severe lack of aggression that ends up being the Achilles heel for so many of the mid-game Dark Souls 2 bosses the healing animation is the slowest in the series but when the bosses let you get away with it its time after time it doesnt even matter I normally save the iron keep for last because of one boss the smelter demon is one of the hardest bosses in the main game of Dark Souls 2 the reasons that make him such a vary from fair and well considered - absolutely broken the good thing that makes this fight challenging is his wind ups and Telegraphs for attacks they are varied and confusing sometimes he will delay his attack for just a second and other times he will attack within a few frames and the wind up is extremely challenging until you learn the tells and it makes it feel unpredictable and satisfying to learn compared to most of the other bosses then theres the thing Im kind of in the middle on when he reaches his second stage hell start doing an aura of fire damage this means that no shield no dodging will help you you will constantly be taking damage when in melee range so if you arent a sorcerer its going to be a considerable amount of non avoidable damage if this was dark souls 1 this would be unforgivable because you have a fixed amount of healing since this is Dark Souls 2 and life gems are a thing its more forgivable but still annoying and then theres the bad part of this fight while the varying speed of attacks make him a fair challenge the hitbox is certainly dont the smelter demon has some of the most broken hit boxes in the game I say broken and not unfair because sometimes they wont work and sometimes this will happen its inconsistent and incredibly frustrating and it drags this boss down more than it should inconsistent damage does not gel well with constant avoidable damage either so there is a lot of damage that is just going to happen in this fight despite that the design is so superb when it comes to the move said that I still enjoy it more than most in the main game wow this boss looks scary unfortunately despite the threatening appearance this boss is a joke his attacks consist of very slow slamming attacks and fire breath he leaves himself open for absolutely forever after attacks and has a shockingly low amount of health for what is supposed to be a fallen King made a god out of the iron of his kingdom thankfully this is the last mediocre mid-game boss well be discussing as we now begin entering the endgame okay thats not entirely true yeah its a rehash of an earlier boss but at least its a little different its not simply two dragon riders but one is an archer and the other is the normal Dragon Rider fought earlier in the game you can keep both in view and dodge the arrow is like a standard duel against multiples or bait the melee rider into breaking the platform for the archer bringing them both down to your level its not difficult or hugely impressive but its a decent fight the first truly great boss in Dark Souls 2 is the looking-glass night the arena for this boss is suitably dramatic taking place during a lightning storm and the night will incorporate the inclement weather into his attacks otherwise he is a pretty standard move set of short combos and jump attacks except for one attack that makes him completely unique among Dark Souls bosses to this point when he reaches half health hell drop his shield to the ground and summon a real player if they left their summons sign around the area or a hostile NPC the challenge varies enormous ly depending on how good the player summoned is or if the NPC gets summoned the NPC is much easier because they can very easily beast unlocked to death I was not able to get an actual player summoned on this playthrough but I have in the past and it confirmed the huge variance in enjoyment for this fight originally hes summoned no joke dark sniper assassin wolf ninja 42069 or something like that and Im pretty sure they were hacking because they ran to a corner of the arena and spammed unlimited fire tempest and fire snake and the knight summer than three times in a row the second stage of the fight can be significantly difficult depending on who gets summoned but the night seems to become less aggressive and rely on heavily Telegraph range attacks to make it a little more fair so my first experience was not the greatest but on subsequent playthroughs I do consider this one of the best in the main game another really unique loss visually that is pretty standard in mediocre mechanically the visual design of this thing is great its like a giant frog with distinctly human-like face and arms its body is completely resistant to damage and it has an eyelid type thing that can cover his entire face to protect it from damage despite the memorable visual design mechanically all the fight really consists of is waiting for it to open and then do a swiping attack and counter it does have one extremely dangerous ranged attack but it doesnt do it very often and its not aggressive enough with follow-up attacks to be much of an issue this would be a pretty awful fight if it wasnt for the unique visual design and that does his best to carry it the Royal protector of vendrick takes the crown for the best boss fight in the main game in my opinion this fight has so much going for it the palpable atmosphere of fighting deep into the pitch black oil crypts the amazing sound design both the fantastic score the distinct sound of Bell stats Bell smashing against the ground and the design of the fight itself which is one of the strongest in the series so far my only gripe is that I wish he had more health or maybe a more exciting second stage that could prolong the fight and make it more challenging to endurance as it stands he hits hard but slow and his attacks are very generously telegraphed its like fighting a boss version of Havel without being able to parry velstadt has a good variety of attacks from the usual sweeps and thrusts to dark magic in his second phase most of these are pretty straightforward but he has one attack that is a serious threat and very easy to underestimate this attack where he can both jump backwards and score a hit in a couple of frames is near impossible to dodge without knowing its coming and can easily knock off a good chunk of health some people dont like this fight as much because his attacks are very slow but I think that works in this bosses favor the amount of damage velstadt can dish out in a single hit is massive every swing of the hammer is a potential death in a more direct and threatening way than most bosses in the game I just wish he had a larger health pool to challenge endurance more directly the longer the fight would go on the more tense it would get as the player understands how costly a single screw-up can be fantastic best boss of the main game the guardian dragon has the setup to be one of the best bosses in the game hes the area boss of one of the best areas in Dark Souls 2 all Diaz keep his arena is uncharacteristically gorgeous with light filtering through the bars of a giant cage and hes comparable in size to collimate but despite the stellar presentation this is one of the weaker dragon fights in the series and one of the weaker fights in Dark Souls 2 period mechanically he is ridiculously limited with only a couple of ground attacks a stop and a very ineffective swipe the rest of this fight is a laborious waste of time as he hops up to the bars to spit easily avoidable fireballs or fire breath at you its boring and isnt challenging in the least even though they nailed the look of this boss the boss theme is shockingly bad Music this is as exciting as it gets the music is generally great for bosses but this is just so rushed and so flat I dont know how this fight ended up going this wrong besides either laziness or lack of time but its a real shame that this ended up wasting so much potential there is only two bosses in the whole series that I could not be bothered to get the kill for in this video this is one of them I got this footage but thats all I got and there is no way in hell Im about to run the  __  gauntlet of dragons shrine for the 40th time just to get to this boss this boss is terrible thankfully its optional but that is no excuse for the worst a design dragon boss in the series and one of the worst boss fights thus far the ancient dragon is the first dragon in the series to be truly intimidating in size calamy and the Guardian dragon were about on SIF scale for comparison they were big for sure but they never gave off the impression of an ancient and powerful creature like the ancient dragon does it looks so intimidating and so suitably ancient its also the first dragon boss in a series not tethered to the ground or a cage like calamy and the guardian dragon war this boss is free to fly around and do whatever freeform powerful attacks a dragon can do except he doesnt do any event all this boss does is very very lazily slow stomp attacks fire breath or hover above the ground and spray fire underneath him and thats it its one of the most limited boss and move sets of the series Im not even joking when I say that many of the regular enemies have more moves and this main boss does making matters even worse every one of his attacks does enough damage to kill a high-level player and one or two hits the stomps and flame breath are very easy to avoid so no problem there but the hovering flame attack has so much range that unless you start running the exact second hes about to leave the ground you are going to take damage from it the dragon loves to spam this move over and over again to drags the fight out way longer than it should on top of all of this he has the biggest health bar of any boss in the game this boss is a combination of all of the worst elements possible thats synchronized terribly and make this the most tedious and frustrating boss in the entire series to this point spending a good seven minutes hacking away his ankles willing to die from one hit from the flying flame attack and then having to run all the way back through this  __  gauntlet of overpowered enemies blocking the way and then starting all over is nothing but a chore and a huge missed opportunity with the ancient dragon they finally have a base to design the perfect dragon fight around the perfect size in a perfect health bar to really demonstrate the futility of fighting such an ancient and powerful thing but they absolutely ruin to this fight with a horribly limited moveset ambiguous attacks and one of the worst boss runs in the series so far for shame this boss is absolutely excellent thats why its so confusing that they chose to make it an optional boss locked behind a covenant and a bunch of awkwardly balanced PvP style fights against NPCs this is the best multi boss fight in the series so far from a mechanical perspective the first stage is against a single dark lurker allowing you to learn his very unpredictable but devastating attacks his magic attacks are insanely damaging and can easily stun lock a high-level character to death and his melee strikes are not only telegraphed very unnaturally but do massive amounts of damage if landed once he splits into two is when the fight really begins though instead of two very different bosses or three of the same boss with a fairly limited move set this is the first time fighting two versions of the same boss with a complicated and varied move set both of the dark lurkers will alternate between magic and melee attacks during the fight this easily has the potential to become annoying and unbalanced with two very powerful and threatening bosses crossing over attacks in a confined area what makes this work is the very slow and deliberate telegraphing of the magic attacks and a huge enemy health bar the balance is just perfect its an intense challenge but a totally fair and thrilling one the huge damage of attacks means that mistakes are cost but avoidable with enough situational awareness and skill I only have one negative thing to say and its this damn rock towards the entrance in the arena that I always get stuck on this load some little thing is responsible for so many deaths I could take a shower in the amount of human effigies it took to take this boss down on my first playthru but that is a minor very personal gripe and I dont count it against this boss easily the best multi boss fight in the series and one of the best period the giant Lord is basically just the last giant with a sword I dont have a lot to say about him other than it takes place in the endgame Giants memories which are way more interesting than this boss is dark souls 2 has a different approach for its fallen King Im split on this one the reveal of vendrick is a hollow shell endlessly circling the black tomb of his own making is striking and even more tragic than Gwyn but then theres the actual fight itself its just bad I get it they wanted to make him seem like someone so broken that all he does is lazily slash his sword around but it doesnt have the complexity of Gwyn kawin was clearly fallen in a shadow of his former self but that former self was still there he could still fight it was just painfully evident how much his fighting had regressed vendricks moveset might not have been so bad if they put in some extra effort maybe he will fall over similar to the iron golem after a couple hits and then uncaring Lee flail his sword around while laying on the ground or something or they could have just made him weaker because for some reason they decided to give him the most ridiculous health bar of any boss in the game vendricks health bar is tied to giant souls that can be found in the Giants memories or from the ancient dragon the more Souls you have during the fight the less health he has if you try and fight him with no giant souls and youd better have about 50 repair powders with you because its going to take a while I love what they did with the presentation in this fight even if it is retreading old ideas but its a shame they didnt put more effort into making the actual fight reinforce that presentation the first DLC boss for crime of the sunken King is a great one Alana is another really really good multi boss fight that has some interesting twists on the formula like dark lurker she alternates between magic and melee attacks in the first stage to let the player learn her moves before things get crazy when she enters her second stage theres a bit of orangey involved in who she can summon it can either be a group of skeletons or velstadt the best boss in the main game velstadt is the more difficult of the two but absolutely the more fun option once vel said his spawn it turns this boss into one of the best multi boss fights in the series their attacks are very well balanced and synchronised fairly and satisfying Lee Alanas magic attacks are telegraphed generously and velstadt strikes are the same from the boss fight with him earlier very deliberate and beautifully telegraphed its a great challenge and a fun one to bait out attacks from velstadt and Whittle along it down over time the next few bosses are for the three DLCs and Alana is an early indication as to just how much they improved over the boss design from the main game but after saying that I have to talk about the worst part of the DLC which ends up not only being the worst thing about Dark Souls 2 but the entire series Dark Souls 3 included the atrocious co-op areas theres one thankfully optional co-op area in each DLC that contains its own optional boss this could have been a well considered addition that improved an aspect of the game that hadnt been represented so far what it ended up being is a contest that throw as many enemies as they can in a linear hallway that leads straight to the boss never has a boss run been so appropriately named because look at this mess there really is no point in fighting any of this so that makes it all the more confusing it was conceived at all anyways once you finally get past that horrible thing the boss itself isnt any good either its another triple boss but instead of being carefully designed like the ruins sentinels where they can be fought individually if done fast enough they just through three already existing NPCs in a room and said  __  it the fact that theyre NPCs and not uniquely designed boss enemies is not only lazily designed visually but a horrendous balancing decision mechanically the hostile NPCs and Dark Souls have always been annoying to fight they dont seem to share any of the restrictions the player does and can dance around with infinite stamina having to play three at once is not only unfair but feels sloppy its more about exploiting the AI and using the arena of encountering a varied moveset the only advantage given to the player is the arena which they can drop down and circle around to try and split them up momentarily and the most depressing thing is that while this fight is a  __  fest its actually the best of the three co-op bosses in these DLCs Music Music finally finally the series has a great dragon bossfight sin the slumbering dragon is a near-perfect dragon boss hes got a varied and threatening move set on the ground he has multiple defenses built-in for abusing sides and back both with a flaming attack reaching on either side and a tail swipe that he can even combo for huge damage he is one of the best boss themes in the series Applause Music and in a series first hes a dragon that actually has a fun and varied move set in the air as well as on the ground diving attacks fireballs and huge AoE fire breath and all of his leaping and smashing around the arena will destroy all of the scenery really making it feel climactic and powerful in a way no other dragon boss has managed to do thus far the only minor gripe I have with his moveset is the opening charge attack where he just sort of moves forward immediately without any clear Telegraph it looks like hes about to swipe his head to the side but its hard to tell when hell move forward so dramatically otherwise the only thing that keeps this fight from being perfect is his health in his size this is another kalameet sized dragon with a relatively low health bar for a being such as this now dont get me wrong he still got a massive health pool big enough to warm my weapon actually almost broke and I had to fumble around in the menus mid fight to repair it but it still doesnt feel like something completely beyond any reasonable measure like an ancient dragon should but thats it other than that this is easily the best dragon boss in the series so far and one of the best fights in the series period Dark Souls 3 included what most considered to be the most difficult boss in Dark Souls 2 is the fume Knight the mandatory boss of the crown of the old iron king dlc while Ive never found that inappropriate mantle myself this also is easily one of the best bosses in the whole series when it comes to aggression and damage output in Dark Souls 2 VM Knight is unmatched mistakes are costly in Dark Souls as a rule but this boss takes that even further he can easily kill a high-level character in just two hits on his second face and he leaves so little time for healing that baiting out attacks long enough for a heal becomes the primary concern from much of the fight if youve got your dodging on point then this boss is a real treat his attacks are immaculately telegraphed and thrilling to avoid but I think the reason most players find this boss so difficult is because of a reliance on shields I have a feeling whew Knight was specifically designed to punish shield reliant players because he can easily bash through a high level characters stamina in just a couple hits as well as doing fire damage that can through blocked hits this fight is about patience above all else his rapid lengthy combos on phase one will eat through much of your stamina and he will immediately punish greed for the first time since artorias it becomes insanely risky to go for more than one or two hits at a time and that is just so refreshing in a midst of Dark Souls 2 s generally sloppy slow bosses his attacks in phase 1 are a mixture of immediate and super delayed to try and throw off the players dodge timings and his attacks in Phase two range from absurdly fast and deadly to extremely damaging and slow ranged attacks the reason I dont find him all that difficult personally is because this fight is absolutely fair and balanced and that makes the fume knight one of the best in the game Applause Music Applause Music I go back and forth between saralyn and a certain other boss as my favorite in Dark Souls 2 sir alonne is the best fight in the game from a purely mechanical perspective fighting sir along with no shield no buffs just two warriors battling it out is the most tense and exciting fight in the whole of Dark Souls two fights in the series come to get increasingly more complicated and varied but sir alonne is the purest duel between two equals in the entire series this might be a little confusing on first glance saralyns attacks are pretty straightforward piercing attacks longer distance sweeps close range combos jump attacks and a special move where you can curse you with a protracted piercing animation nothing about these attacks are all that extraordinary and yet I find this one of the most difficult fights in the series the reason for that and the reason that makes Cyril lawn a brilliant fight is the timings of these attacks most bosses in the series have a standard for attack timings fume Knights combo here for example is the same animation every time with the same timings to memorize sir alonne has the same animations but can vary the timings for each attack during the fight without telegraphing a change in speed this makes him unpredictable and requires intense study of the animations the long distance sweep in particular is very unpredictable and challenging to avoid it can vary between extremely fast only a few frames of reaction time to delayed and so slow that it can easily catch you at the end of your roll if you reflexively dodge at the beginning of the animation and like fume night before him he can easily kill you in just two hits making this really feel like a duel between two samurai no protection between them just two swords clashing under the Rising Sun the presentation is also some of the strongest in the series Ilans arena is the top of a tower with the Sun illuminated in the background on a mirrored marble floor and the music Music Music Music maybe my favorite boss theme in the series this would be a perfect boss flight if it wasnt for one thing it has the single worst boss run in the series oh my God look how many nights there are its a lazy straight gauntlet filled with fire spinning lizards and so many along nights that they will literally clog the tight hallways until they are all dispatched and you have to run this stupid thing every time you die which from me is a lot if they put a bonfire right outside this boss story this fight would be perfect the fight itself is so good that I cant count it against this boss too much its with Cyril on in the few night that Dark Soul starts putting a very noticeable amount of effort into its bosses even the best fights in Dark Souls 1 Ornstein in smell and artorias still feel lesser compared to the polish and the challenge of Dark Souls twos DLC ok so you know how I said Cyril law and had the worst boss run in the series I lied the iron passage is unequivocally the most frustrating lazy and poorly designed section in a series Dark Souls 3 included everything people say about Dark Souls 2 that its linear hallways of gank fest design manifests itself in this  __  run it is literally three straight hallways of enemies some of which are normal melee enemies some of which are archers and some of which are unreachable sorcerers who put a  __  slow spell on you that restricts your rolling what the  __  its like theyre trying to be as annoying as possible this run is indefensible straight garbage and I have nothing nice to say about it the excuse is that this is a co-op area and meant to be done with a party of players but I say what about in ten years when the online community is dead so what happens once you finally make it through this dreadful thing oh for  __  sakes its just smelter Demon again only hes blue and he has even more broken hit boxes this is the hardest fight in the game for me not because its challenging but because I am convinced it is broken so many times during this fight I would get hit and have no idea what I could have done differently I had my agility at 96 at this point so I wasnt dealing with the default iframes and this  __  was still happening and every time you die you have to run the gauntlet of enemies again I could not take this boss I caved and eventually committed a cardinal sin by summoning just so I could get the footage of beating him are you happy now the first boss of the ivory King DLC is an interesting one with some unique mechanics you can enter this fight immediately upon starting the DLC just to find an invisible Tiger messing you up its actually to teach you to explore the area first and find an item that reveals invisible enemies but its kind of unique that they teach you this through death once Allah is revealed its a mostly standard Beast fight just with some unique moves and twist two timings alpha has ranged attacks a rare thing for a beast boss but they end up being easily avoidable and more useful as a healing window than anything really threatening his melee attacks however the complete opposite Avas melee attacks are some of the hardest to dodge in the game with his trademark delay after he rears back on either his left or right paw for a sweep its designed perfectly to bait out a reflexive role from the player and then catch them off-guard its very tricky to nail down at first and does considerable damage all the speed is a little surprising as well being able to jump a good distance of the arena and spin around to attack his backside its a pre challenging and well-designed boss that channels difficulty from some underutilized areas in this series so far okay so you know how I say the cave of the Dead was the worst boss run in this series and then I said the iron passage was the worst I lied again Im admitting that for the third and the last time I swear I declare it once and for all that the frigid outskirts is the biggest piece of  __  that I have ever played in my life a cool idea is ruined spectacularly by the complete absence of bonfires and the single worst designed enemy in the entire series in the form of electric reindeer sounds cool but its really not they have a charge attack that is impossible to dodge nope nope nope I I dont think its possible theyre also faster than you so running is pointless and they will lets spam the unavoidable charge attack over and over again if you do attempt to fight them making it a grueling sloppy mess of spamming the attack button and praying to the gods that they will just die before you succumb to the onslaught of broken charged attacks dealing with one of them may be doable but of course not you have to run a marathon across a barren plain with no vision constantly getting ambushed along the way eventually ending with two of them at once and this is all just to get to the damn boss which turns out to be to Avas so not only is the run to the boss the most challenging thing in the entire series for stupid reasons but the boss of the end is a terrible unbalanced reskin with attacks that do not gel together in a satisfying or fair way this is the only boss in the entire series besides the ancient dragon that I did not kill for this video this is the only footage I got I physically cannot stand any more of this area before I start breaking things so this is it call it unprofessional or whatever you want this boss and this area can go  __  itself I officially amend my previous statement and give Lud Enzo in the worst boss of all time award and the frigid outskirts the award for legally sanctioned torture the developers should be ashamed and I will do them a favor by pretending it does not exist for the rest of this video this is how the Dark Souls DLCs work because we go from the worst to the best in all of Dark Souls 2 my favorite overall boss and Dark Souls 2 and in the series to this point is the burnt ivory King Sir Alanas pure in its design him isnt as sloppy but the burnt ivory King has things going for it that sir alonne doesnt this boss has got at all its got the lor its got the challenge and its got the spectacle and oh what a spectacle it is first you get this gratifying shot of seeing all the loose Knights you found preparing for battle and then this perfectly timed and transition fall into the old chaos itself with you and your squad of knights Im not going to get super in-depth for the lore but I think the ivory King story is important to this bosses impact thats because the ivory king is one of the most memorable and tragic characters in the whole series eleum loyce the city the ivory King built is a fortress to contain the old chaos in a portal to which resides in the throne room of the king himself just that he can personally watch over it and will be the first line of defense eventually he led a squad of knights into the old chaos and gave his own soul to quarantine the chaos in the fortress he built to protect his people in the outside world from his flames the fight you now partake in is unabashedly epic gathering the Fallen Kings lost knights and venturing into the chaos to defeat the twisted versions of the Knights in a king himself that were consumed by the chaos all that time ago the first stage of the fight is the ultimate test of fighting groups of heavily armored soldiers at dark souls 2 mostly consists of that can be backstabbed like normal enemies and have infinite poise by taking away two of your most useful exploits it makes you real I totally on your allied Loyce Knights and makes it an incredible challenge the Knights will gradually fall one by one sacrificing themselves to shut off the portals that spawn shard voice Knights until the king himself shows up in the coolest boss intro in a series so far I just wish that the ivory king was more challenging what makes this fight so interesting is that right after defeating alpha you can start this boss almost immediately afterward with only one voice Knight that however makes it one of the hardest if not the hardest fights in a game because youll be stormed with enemy charred Knights the entire fight but the balance shifts too far in the other direction if you have gotten all of the Knights by the end you can still have allied Knights alive for the boss I think this is the first fight in the entire series where you can actually outnumber the boss without summoning and it can unfortunately make the fight too easy I said after my first playthrough a lot of people think this boss is really easy and I agreed with them after I beat him first try on my first playthru however on the play tree for this video he absolutely messed me up five times in a row there seems to be a fair amount of RNG the first time I fought him he just repeated the fairly easily avoidable charge attack over and over again but this time he changed the speed of his attacks the same way Cyril long does on a whim it caught me off guard and was a struggle to adjust to now after fighting him on this playthrough and seeing the whole range of his attacks a huge damage grab and AoE attack I enjoy this fight even more than I did before eventually hell buff his sword which turns into a lightsaber basically and then he has both speed and range that takes full advantage of the large open platform the second stage of this boss turns into a much more deadly version of artorias he has incredible speed but with a huge range of his buff sword healing windows become minuscule and trying to create space becomes impossible ultimately though its the presentation that elevates this boss to something else it truly is next level for the soul series it outclasses every boss in the series in that way even going all the way to the end of Dark Souls 3 before its finally topped and well get there the burnt ivory King is a fantastic way to cap off the brilliant crown DLCs for Dark Souls 2 and is a Vanguard for the more complicated boss design to come later the final three bosses of Dark Souls 2 have to be fought in succession making it a real endurance fight with one life the first is an homage to orange scene and smell only not quite as remarkable throne water and throne defender similar with one wielding a speedy spear type weapon and another with a slower great sword the difference is that this fight absolutely has to be played defensively much more so than Ornstein and smell because they arent content to throw an attacker two at a time instead resorting to sweeping combos if youre caught in the middle of both at once it is almost a guaranteed death or at the very least a huge loss in total health instead it is maybe the greatest test of patience in the game very very carefully baiting out one or two attacks at a time they both have shields as well a further defense against player aggression when either of them reaches low health they will buff their sword giving them even more damage than before making it one of the riskiest fights in the game unlike Ornstein and smell however when one fall the other doesnt absorb their power and start over they are dead for good and the remaining is a much more feasible 1v1 actually they can revive their fallen comrade but after a very long amount of time so its not too much of an issue its a very solid fight all things considered and a great way to close out the game extremely well balanced intense the second boss in this sequence is less so in fact its kind of a flop nashandra was originally the final boss of Dark Souls 2 before scholar of the first sin and I can see how that certainly left a poor impression nashandra is very similar to Alana just without the interesting attacks or ability to summon help so pretty much worthless the only real unique thing about this fight is that nashandra puts a little curse orbs around the arena to incentivize patience but because curse is nerfed so hard compared to the first game its actually easier to just tank it and wail away at the very passive nashandra until shes dead theres not much of a strategy or much of a challenge its uncompromising Lee bland and hugely disappointing given that it was the original final boss but with a scholar of the first sin edition it patched in one final fight to cap off the trio of bosses guarding the throne of want its not successful in terms of mechanics being maybe even less complex than a Chandra but it is very successful thematically and in its presentation Aldi as a character that shows up throughout the whole game asking and challenging the player about what they plan to do once they reach the throne so its fitting that he without the end bosses and the boss theme is great Music aldea cant measure up to Gwyn and is no doubt pretty bland mechanically but I cant bring myself to dislike this one because of the stellar presentation when I think about it that describes a lot of bosses in Dark Souls 2 and while I controversial II do think that Dark Souls 2 has better individual level design than Dark Souls 1 it both regrets in several key areas unfortunately and drastically improved when it comes to the boss design now Dark Souls 1 was not even close to perfect either but while the amount of good bosses has shot up dramatically the amount of bad ones has shot up as well making Dark Souls to selection a disappointing mixed bag of some of the best fights in the series and some of the biggest missed potential Music Dark Souls 3 has a radically different approach to bosses in the first two games the first two especially Dark Souls 2 were frequently outshined by the levels the bosses took place in the level design is the soul series defining trait when compared to the bosses which some of the time felt like an afterthought Dark Souls 3 changes this it puts much more emphasis on the bosses than past titles and the end result is easily the best boss lineup of all three games there is a proper difficulty curve this time instead of the mid game sag in Dark Souls 2 or the late-game sag in one bosses actually have a reasonable amount of health and feel properly balanced throughout the entire thing bosses in Dark Souls 3 share a new rule that gives boss fights more variety and depth whenever a boss reaches half health they will enter a second and most of the time a much more deadly stage where they gain new attacks or abilities that change the entire dynamic of the fight and give boss is a consistent sense a variety and tension that was never fully realized in past games the first boss of Dark Souls 3 for the first time in the series is actually really good The Asylum Demon was okay and the last giant was less than okay UNIX gun-deer is not only a good teaching tool but a very solid and satisfying fight on its own thats even fun for returning players the first stage is a very well-done standard duel against a big night with a big weapon immediately Dark Souls 3 starts showing off its differences in design with three changes gun-deer is fast much faster than most enemies in previous games it can be a little difficult to adjust to coming straight off of Dark Souls 2 but its a welcome change giving the game a faster pace than the extremely slow and deliberate pace of Dark Souls 2 and secondly gun-deer can actually be parried one of the most disappointing things about the Dark Souls 1 and 2 bosses was the lack of bringing in the special moves used against regular enemies like backstabs and parries in Dark Souls 1 only Gwyn was Perryville in Dark Souls 2 many more of the bosses could be parried but Im crap at parrying in Dark Souls 2 so I mostly stayed away from it in Dark Souls 3 almost every humanoid boss can be parried even if they are too big to be reposted it adds an extra element two bosses were very skilled timing can land huge damage and finally gun deer will enter his second stage when a huge black and growth will sprout out of him and turn the fight into a much sloppier but admittedly intimidating and intense fight the attacks are very difficult to see coming and the size is so ridiculous that the camera can cause issues but the shock value makes it kind of work its a little disappointing that the first stage ends up being hugely more mechanically satisfying but its still a teaching tool at the end of the day and at that the action judge excels the first proper boss and Dark Souls 3 is Voort of the boreal valley a doglike mace wielder on all fours what characterizes vort and others from the boreal valley is their unnatural beasts like movements that can be tricky to predict he has varied timings from extremely delayed sweeps to near instant smash downs his large size actually works in his favor too because he isnt content to let the player whale away on his sides he is extremely mobile and aggressive and will constantly be turning to face the player head-on in that situation its very easy to get stuck or lose track of where you are its this quality thats the worst part of the fight otherwise its visually distinctive and decently balanced but it can be very clunky and awkward like what happens in this playthrough his second stage is a lot more exciting when he starts rampaging around the arena and using frostbite AoE spells a new status effect but the same sloppiness remains its an ok fight all things considered I just wish the camera could pull back a bit more for this fight and maybe ease up a bit on the collision detection I give this boss points for uniqueness because it has a different way of damaging it than any other boss in this series similar to demon of song its body is a hard shell and does not take any damage but instead of attacking the head the great wood has little pustules located in different spots around the body after these are hit a few times they will pop and take off a large chunk of health so the fight becomes less about abusing the large-sized by hiding on one of the sides or the back because this might be the largest boss in a series in terms of size instead the goal is to hunt down each of the little pustules and do enough damage to them at the same time tree is moving all over the place and dealing with the hollows in the first stage after enough damage is dealt the floor will break through and that tree gains many more moves including an arm that attacks from the front and a bunch of lazily rolling around or standing up and then sitting right down a huge damage attacks otherwise the fight is largely the same with just avoiding more attacks I think this is a lot about how good Dark Souls 3 is when it comes to bosses because well this is one of the weaker ones its still better than a lot in the first two games a very short and simple little boss on the way to the cathedral the crystal sage is a sorcerer who has a couple of very high damage slow moving spells and will teleport to a different corner of the arena after taking enough damage this boss is a total pushover and one of the easiest in the game all the first phase really consists of is dodging a spell or two and then stun locking this sage into submission before he teleports away just to repeat the same thing over and over again in the second phase things get a little more interesting when the sage clones themself but the real one is easily identified by the purple spells and the fake ones die in one hit the only real way to lose to this boss is by being too overly passive on the second phase and getting overwhelmed by the spells cast by all of the fakes otherwise this is one of if not the easiest and least remarkable bosses in the game he can even be parried which just makes it all the more hilariously easy this is another contender for easiest boss in the game but instead of the crystal sage which was just kind of boring this boss is gorgeously atmospheric and unique the Deacons are a tightly packed group of individually weak and relatively passive normal enemies protecting a possessed deacon that damages the actual health bar after the possessed Deacon is killed another will quickly be possessed in his place and repeat its pretty fun actually trying to cut through the herd strength weapons like a vie hen to really come into their own here as you can knock down almost the entire group with a single swing after the boss reaches half health a new Deacon spawns that remains as the permanently possessed deacon and gains a new group of linebacker bodyguards this phase is very similar to the first only it can be fairly to focus in on the possessed Deacon too heavily and failed to notice that deacons on the sides casting a curse spell which will instantly kill you if it manages to build up the linebackers are a little more aggressive than the normal deacons - so its a little more challenging to get to the possessed Deacon this to me is an example of a unique boss done mostly right its not super challenging but its uniqueness doesnt become annoying or change the core gameplay too drastically instead it manages to challenge a different set of the players ability than most other bosses an early game highlight the abyss watchers are one of the more memorable and unique bosses in Dark Souls 3 this is a multi boss fight done very differently than anything done before it starts off similar to the ruined sentinels putting you against a single abyss watcher before more spawn on timers later they play very much like a regular enemy extremely fast and agile and also perceptible two special attacks like backstabs and parries that most bosses are immune to they even have poise and can be stun locked after a certain amount of time though another will spawn in dealing with two at once is much more difficult because of how quickly they can close huge distances around the arena the fight becomes much more defensive and about patiently waiting for an opening but instead of a third abyss watcher spawning in and making the fight a 3v1 similar to ruin sentinels the third that spawns and is actually aggressive towards both you and the other abyss Watchers so instead of having to deal with three extremely fast and aggressive enemies at once you can pull away just the one while the other two will be fighting each other allowing more damage against a single target this cycle will repeat infinitely until the original abyss watcher is dead meaning that the tables can turn in the Watchers favour again should the red eyed watcher die after the original watcher is dead the fight becomes much more straightforward but also much more challenging now the fight is against a single watcher with a sword covered in flames that will leave flame trails all around his strikes sometimes dealing damage even if properly avoiding the majority of the strike the watcher has the most agile and ridiculously cool move set of the entire series up to this point able to combo strike after strike doing backflips and breakdancing on the ground while throwing fire everywhere its gorgeous and very difficult to a the Watchers weakness is still his ability to be backstabbed and poison so the player can cause huge damage after baiting out enough attacks the abyss Watchers is one of the best takes on a multi boss fight in the series today which manages to strike a solid balance between being fair and still being a challenge picking up after the failure that was the demon ruins and lost izalith we have the first good demon boss in the series I dont count the smelter demon hes more of another night style boss the old demon king actually has a varied moveset with some scary powerful fire spells as well as delayed melee attacks the first phase is similar to fighting the mini boss version of this creature back in the undead settlement he leaves large windows open for attack but does crazy damage if an attack lands and its easier than it looks for that to happen his attacks are the most challenging kind of delayed where they will catch you at the end of your role if you roll too early he also mixes this up with some super quick fire spells meant to catch you off-guard preparing for the slower melee strikes however its the second phase that this fight becomes much more daunting with some of the most unique and threatening fire spells this series has to offer the first is this massive nuke that he conjures above him that spits multiple exploding fireballs that homed in on the player if you dont know what the spell dozen ischl II it can easily instant kill a proper level of character for this boss thankfully you can hide behind the stacks of bodies in the arena to avoid this one but if you are caught out in the open it is absolutely devastating the other attack isnt as powerful but its much harder to avoid its when he hits the ground repeatedly sending out a ring of fire that has to be rolled through this is trickier than it looks and it even comes back from behind after the initial strike which might be enough to kill a weakened player at this point otherwise its the standard fare of melee strikes to mix up the fight and a couple of improved AOE s the only problem with this fight is that its a little clunky his weapon is so big that he can actually throw you around the arena without actually doing any damage if youre caught and similar to vork its too easy to get stuck on his front side between animations beyond those minor nitpicks this is the first good demon boss in this series and does a good job utilizing its arena and spells Ive done some questioning about the easiest boss in dark Souls 3 a couple times so far and while a couple of the others get close its really no contest who takes the crown in my opinion and fittingly its highlord wall near the area boss of the catacombs this boss looks cool but is a joke the reason for that is a little more complicated than a first glance though this boss has some solid ideas in it its another attempt at a DPS check idea wall near starts at the back of the arena and will gradually move forwards during the fight bringing the abyss with him if he gets to the other end of the arena the abyss itself can damage and easily kill the player all while being trapped against the wall from wall nears attacks so the goal is to do enough damage to these bracelets which pulls him back to the abyss the problem is that this isnt challenging or interesting at all wall near is one of the most passive bosses in this series and is content to sit around and wait until these bracelets are broken only occasionally putting out an attack or two just to give the illusion that this is an actual boss fight unlike Dark Souls 1 or 2 there is no shockingly bad boss in Dark Souls 3 this is honestly as bad as it gets and that is just kind of unremarkable this would have been one of the mid tier bosses in Dark Souls 2 and I think that speaks to Dark Souls threes huge improvements in quality what an intro for this boss pontiff Sullivan is analogous to Ornstein and smo capping off the mid-game peak in difficulty with one of the hardest fights in the game the reason for that varies from fun and challenging to questionable  __  it can be fun and challenging because pontiff has some of the longest combos of any boss in the series it can easily deplete a whole stamina bar - block and even just a dodge which makes this fight very defensive compared to most other bosses if you are caught in one of these combos it is most likely going to either bring you to the brink of death or kill you outright beyond that he has a lot of mix-ups that make the fight extremely unpredictable he can switch from being fairly passive to one of the most aggressive bosses in the series on a dime which can make finding healing or attack windows very risky the reason this fight can also be questionable  __  is that some of his attacks are simply too fast to reasonably avoid this forward thrust is near-instant and is basically guaranteed damage if you arent using a shield and then theres the second stage some people think it makes the fight easier theres certainly an element of truth to this because instead of an independent version of Pontiff or another boss entering the fight its an exact clone of Pontiff who will broadcast exactly what the real pontiff is about to do sometimes and its this sometimes that can make this fight very annoying in a second phase sometimes the clone just doesnt do the same thing as the real pontiff at all and this is  __  because the player has no idea when to reasonably expect the clone to break his own rules normally though it does actually make the fight a bit easier because the fight slows down and you can bait out attacks for larger damage windows I havent had too much trouble on this boss on recent playthroughs but on my first playthrough this is actually the only boss in the entire game I summoned for I found him the hardest in a game initially over time Ive definitely softened on Pontiff and now consider him a pretty good boss despite his occasional tendency for  __  this next boss has hands down the best buildup in the series so far first off that game drops a massive nostalgia bomb right on top of you when you arrive in an Orlando at the beloved level from the first game and a home of orange scene and SMO only this time something is obviously wrong the giant black Smith is dead theres this weird slime coating the ground the enemies have been replaced with deacons and oh oh whats that theres a boss door right where Ornstein and SMO used to be the curiosity this whole build-up cultivates is just so intense and palpable and when you finally do enter the arena it has one last nostalgic surprise for you no its not a reskin of Ornstein and SMO but instead aldrich the devourer of gods and oh my god he has gwendolyns body and priscillas axe in his second phase this boss lives up to his namesake Aldridge has clearly eaten some of the characters from the first game he looks like he might have gotten neato as well sharing the same wispy black cloak dotted with bones its a huge surprise and works as a sort of blending together of a few different types of boss fight the build-up and the lore is definitely this bosses strong suit mechanically its okay at best often clunky and occasionally incredibly frustrating Aldridge is one of the more passive bosses in the game with primarily ineffective easily avoidable attacks like these little magic spheres and a very obviously telegraphed magic orb his melee strikes are even more awkward the way he winds up for absolutely forever glitching through walls in the floor also completely whiff on the final delivery his only threatening attack in this first stage is the arrow attack that sends a flurry of arrows cascading 300 style homing towards the player the area of effect is so wide that its one of the trickiest attacks in a game to avoid and the fact that the arrows can briefly stun means that it can be a guaranteed death if caught up in it this attack is a little scary in the first stage but one of the most powerful attacks in the game on the second stage because of the vastly increased time given to the arrows this attack absolutely must be stopped in a second stage as any attempt to avoid it is risky that ends up being easier than it first appears by predicting Aldrichs spawn points after he disappears frequently throughout the fight he always spawns in the furthest corner from the player so if you bum-rush him and get in melee distance this usually stops him from doing the attack consequently making it one of the easiest boss fights in the game and even still this boss is still special because of that build up a lot of people like to refer to Dark Souls 3 as being creatively bankrupt and pandering with constant fanservice but bringing back an AR Londo wasnt just for a cheap reference they use your nostalgia instead to create an intense feeling of curiosity of how much it has changed and what terrible thing now resides in the most iconic area from the first game your the Giant is a little disappointing initially for one reason its a trick boss you can try to fight him normally but thats not a very good idea instead what you were supposed to do is run past him and grab the weapon near his throne its the storm ruler from Demon Souls whose weapon are is to throw a giant blast of air that does incredible damage after a lengthy charge up this means more fumbling around in menus in the middle of a boss fight not a very elegant solution anyways after using this weapon this fight becomes one of the easiest in the game which is a shame given how intimidating the size of your MS but over time Ive come to terms with this boss and appreciate it for its unique elements from other boss fights the most substantial being that is the only boss in a series another named character Ally without having to summon if you complete the onion Knights quest line throughout Dark Souls 3 then he will show up to aid you in the fight wielding a storm ruler of his own well it makes the fight even easier than before Id argue its an improvement because the sheer spectacle of two storm rollers absolutely decimating the Fallen Lord of cinder is amazing fun and something totally different than any other boss in the series trying to fight your normal a is not only unsatisfying because of his ridiculous health bar but also his very limited moveset which is only slightly better than the last giant from Dark Souls 2 but with the aid of sea gourd and a unique powerful weapon this fight can be very enjoyable in its spectacle dancer of the boreal valley the counterpart of Ord is the much more successful outright ernight of the two she moves and attacks in a way completely different than any other boss in a series very unnaturally with delayed spins and hazy movements this is one of the only instances in the series where this is actually fun and not frustrating like how dogs work in this series theres obviously a lot of thought put into these moves instead of just an artificial attempt at difficulty in fact her attacks are so unnatural that they are difficult to categorize like Ive done from most bosses so far fittingly she attacks very much like a dancer doing graceful spins and Bobs carrying her swords with her through the motions its a genuine challenge to reasonably predict more so than most bosses whose movesets can be figured out after just a couple of attempts her second phase isnt super interesting but amplifies this mechanic even further by giving her a second sword as well as some extremely deceptive magic AoE attacks the second stage starts off with one of the most devastating attacks in the game a hurricane of death combo that can easily kill a high-level player if caught up in the storm otherwise the second stage is very similar to the first just with two swords to watch out for instead of one its a very good fight but one thats difficult to talk about because its central mechanic the unnatural movement is pretty much all it has going for it that sounds like a negative but in reality its this fights greatest strength it found a new mechanic to put emphasis on and nailed it an uncommon ly vocal boss oh Sai Rose is one of the only bosses in this series to talk during the fight and because of that has kind of become a meme the fight itself isnt spectacular and is one of the few unpolished in the game with some wonky hit boxes and attacks weirdly telegraphed tail sweeps and uneven arena with scenery to block attacks and the worst charge attack in the series since the gaping dragon these ones stand out more than usual because of Dark Souls threes generally much higher level of Polish and consideration in boss move sets but besides these issues the fights not so bad its a very good boss for the lore showing what happened to the king of lothric and his invisible baby but mechanically I dont have a ton to say about this boss it would be one of the weaker ones if not for the unique vocal elements and the surprise of what the king has turned himself into I feel kind of bad for this boss because in any other souls game this would be one of the best bosses but because it takes place at the tail end of Dark Souls 3 when nearly every boss is like a little masterpiece he gets overshadowed by the more heavy hitters this really is a fantastic boss that can stand with the rest of them he looks kind of like Ornstein but brandishing a very different weapon and fighting style this is intentional because the name of this boss appears to be 100% literal it is nothing but an animated shell of armor being controlled by the butterflies surrounding the arena the butterflies are this bosss unique element because they will be spraying projectiles and laser attacks during the fight just with extremely slow and telegraphed wind-ups to make it not feel like you were being unfairly pelted by off-screen enemies the threat of the butterflies is intermittent but devastating if caught off guard the fight against the armor itself is extremely solid and one of the best in this series the armor has a fairly standard move set in the first stage of short combos in a ground pound lightning attack but the real difficulty in this fight is his shield he has the same kind of near-instant shield bash attacks that regular enemies have they are very easy to be surprised by and can block almost all front facing damage while turtling behind it this is rare for Dark Souls bosses as most of them achieve their difficulty through extreme aggression the second stage gets a little more interesting when he busts out one of the hardest to dodge attacks in a series with his absurdly long and deceiving wind-up only two follow up with a near-instant incredibly damaging and encompassing attack I am terrible at avoiding this attack and have found the most success by wildly smacking the Dodge button while trying to get behind him the second stage is also when the butterflies start shining in so the fight becomes much more defensive as you have two very powerful attacks to watch out for I dont really have any major negatives with this fight its impeccably well balanced beautifully animated and has an incredible score accompanying it Music Applause Music Applause Music its just that it doesnt have the wow factor that most of the bosses adjacent to it have the one disappointing thing about you Dex gun-deer is that the second stage wasnt as polished as the first and I would have preferred an expanded version of the first half smooth set well here it is champion gun-deer is a secret boss that takes place in an alternate version of the tutorial area where the fire has already faded champion is very similar to you Dex with some added moves and scaled difficulty its those new moves however that make this one of the hardest bosses in the game and the most aggressive boss in the entire series gun-deer is the only boss in the series fast enough to hit you on the ground before even recovering from an attack hes so fast that he can even juggle you like a fighting game character his shoulder charge and kick are the fastest follow-up attacks in the game and are nearly impossible to avoid without predicting they will happen this all sounds pretty brutal and it genuinely is but his weakness is still his ability to be parried instead of turning into a black a goop monster in his second phase he becomes even faster and even more aggressive the only safe healing window in his entire fight is after this ground slam attack which he does pretty infrequently he also has the most difficult to dodge attack in the series which to this day I still havent figured out its perfectly time to catch mid-roll after the first swing I think its more about spacing than timing but Im just really bad at it doing this fight with no parries is the biggest strain on your dodging abilities in the whole game I do think its a little annoying they can hit you on the ground but other than that this fight is unparalleled in speed and aggression its excellent and one of the most challenging in this series the second trick boss in Dark Souls 3 is the ancient wyvern who like your is not meant to be fought like a normal boss instead what theyve designed is a gauntlet of enemies guarding a drop-off point for an instant kill plunging attack so the gauntlet ends up being much more challenging than the boss itself its unfortunate that its filled with some of the most annoying enemies in the game the snakes with no Telegraph for huge dual wielding knife combos and the real boss that Shane axe wielding big snake guarding the final bridge its honestly easier to just run past all of them and come back when the boss is dead later I dont have much to say about this boss because its not really a boss at all just a one-trick pony who only benefits from the surprise of the initial run of the gauntlet because of that its very difficult to judge this boss because Id be rating the gauntlet instead of the boss itself but since the gauntlet is just kind of a smattering of enemies thrown together without any real thought as to how the player is actually supposed to make it through without getting overwhelmed its nothing thrilling I appreciate that they tried to do something different but that doesnt always guarantee success even if theyre saying all that it is a secret boss in an obscure area so I dont feel like I can criticize it too heavily but the real star of the secret bosses is undoubtedly the nameless King Gawain this lost firstborn son widely considered to be the most difficult boss in the game that I dont agree with but I do think hes one of the best I think the reason many find him so difficult is that its an unparalleled challenge of endurance to this point its two stages like every boss but to entire health bars separated by a cutscene like the abyss Watchers the first stage is against the king riding a dragon the attacks are extremely slow to compensate for the flying around and harder to see Telegraphs but hit hard theres lightning bolts thrown from the air downward strikes and sweeps in an AoE ground-pound from the king himself the dragon really only has fire breath I think not to overwhelm the player with two complex move sets mostly its just okay though which is a shame for the literal God of War riding a dragon its the second phase that cements this boss as one of the greats the nameless king absorbs the Dragons power in an omage to Ornstein and snow and fights one-on-one with new abilities his moves are some of the most polished and tricky to dodge in the whole series populated by a cavalcade of delayed timings and mix ups almost his entire mu set is designed to punish for rolling too early delaying his attacks just a second after rearing back and the second swipe in his short combo is to punish for dodging too late coming very quickly after the first he has some special moves - like this wind blaster ranged attack a long-range charge from the air a lightning kick and ground pound and an extremely tricky ranged attack where he cast lightning into the air that homes in on the player just a second or two after the cast it hits instantly and for huge damage - its a handful the sheer variety of attacks would be one thing but the fact that every single attack is challenging to avoid in some way makes this boss an immense challenge on first encounter that appeal has definitely faded over time however and Ive killed him on my first or second try consistently ever since but I will never forget that first evening spending a couple hours straight to finally take down this monster of a boss one of the most satisfying feelings Ive had in a souls game today I still have a great respect for this boss and consider him one of the best in Dark Souls 3 even though the Kings power has clearly faded and finally we have my favorite boss in the main game of Dark Souls 3 the twin Princes Lorien and lothric this boss has a new mechanic that is both fun and challenging and throws a mix up into the basic boss fight formula by way of teleporting attacks in the first stage Lorien has his normal horizontal and thrusting strikes at close range but also has the ability to teleport usually at the end of the combo which can then follow up with a few different attacks either straight into another fast swing a drop attack from the air a thrust or a very slow magic attack that is positioned far enough away to where it breaks the lock-on forcing the player to scan their surroundings to locate the incoming attack in a limited time frame this is great because it makes the fight feel unpredictable this test or vigilance and split-second decision making either dodging a near instant attack or holding off a second lorians thrust attack out of the teleport is just perfectly timed to catch a player at the end of their roll if they reflexively roll at the beginning of the teleport you have to wait for just a second and then act immediately all of this would make for a pretty good boss but its the second stage that really elevates this fight into one of the best in this series after Lorien falls lava descends from the throne and revives him now clinging to his back and adding a whole other set of attacks tellurians familiar move set with magic attacks reinforcing a challenge of teleportation what makes this even harder is that this is the greatest test of endurance in the game so far if Florian falls lothric will infinitely revive him over and over again until law Rick himself falls you can try and avoid this entirely by holding attacks until lothric is in view but this is much more difficult than it seems thankfully when laughs Rick is in the process of revival it is a huge damage window where the player can easily wipe out a good amount of health mechanically its near perfect but this bosses greatest strength is its place in the overall game and its presentation because of Dark Souls is non-linearity it typically has a problem towards the end game making bosses feel climactic and challenging for a late-game player Dark Souls 3 is the first game in the series to really nail this while it is more linear when it comes to the sequence bosses have to be done in on much more linear order than past titles the trade-off is that the balancing is much more precise this fight is perfectly positioned and balanced for the tail end of the players journey this boss also has an amazing score easily my favorite in Dark Souls 3 and a contender for the best boss theme in a series its got this melodic violin in the first stage and bombastic climactic vocals in the second Music Applause Music Applause Music Music Laureen and lothric are amazing I dont have anything really negative to say the presentation is top tier the mechanics are thrilling intense just fantastic the first DLC boss is in interesting one its mostly to introduce the new arena feature but thats at the cost of a mediocre boss taking up one of the only two slots in the first DLC ashes of aerion del champions grave tender first pits you against a couple of wolves in a single NPC with a new weapon that can block an attack in a same hand it sounds cool but it doesnt have a dramatic effect on gameplay and the opening plays kind of similar to the Capra demon a mad scramble to get rid of the wolves before you get overwhelmed the actual fight against the grave tender is just like fighting a regular hostile NPC he can be parried backstabbed and poison so its not really difficult or interesting in the slightest once he reaches half health the second stage is a little more interesting but still derivative of an earlier enemy the large wolf that hunts you through the first section of the DLC because of the grave tenders low poison health its not very difficult to burn him down before the wolf shows up to do any damage so this fight isnt even really a multi boss fight either instead the real difficulty comes from this wolf and the awkwardly telegraphed attacks all enemies of this type share in the series I think they wanted this fight to feel like SIF but its significantly more awkward due to the speed and agility of this wolf it has a very similar repeated charge attack to vort and it feels just as inconsistent as it did in that fight and its close range attacks are the same as the Pontiff beasts some of the most awkwardly Telegraaf attacks in a series none of this makes her a very engaging boss fight but at the end of the day its still not terrible a lot of people despise this fight and while I certainly cant defend it too much I dont think its that bad theres only two bosses in ashes of aerion del and the first was just kind of mediocre sister Frieda appears to be the reason for that sister Frieda seems to be where all the money went and is one of the most complex challenging and well-designed bosses of the whole series its first stage is deceptively difficult despite Freitas lacking healthful and poise as well as being susceptible to Perrys and backstab she has extremely long and damaging combos and some of if not the fastest attacks in this series theres some homage is to pass bosses like Priscilla here to finally bringing back the invisibility mechanic and expanding on it instead of using footsteps in the snow Frieda is largely located by sound if you listen for her landing after she jumps away from this attack this leaves a massive damage window open if you could locate her she is completely open for a backstab but if she does complete her attack in his animation its a devastating homing grab attack shes even got a status effect threat in the form of frostbite which spreads out on the ground from some of her attacks but ultimately her weaknesses make her a fairly approachable challenge in this first stage the second instead is another take on a multi boss fight fighting both sister Frieda and father Aryan dealt together Frieda is much more passive in this stage sitting back and throwing out an attack or two instead of locking you into combos in an enclosed space its airy and L whos the one who puts out the most aggression at first he seems like an easily abusable large boss with a limited front-facing moveset but his attacks are surprisingly aggressive and damaging his most common move is this gradual slam charge attack that can take him across the entire arena smashing his pot down over and over again this moves very quickly and can easily smash you to pieces if busy with Frida and he has some huge AoE fire slam and breath attacks that can reach a good distance across the arena since they share the same health bar its actually easier to ignore Frida entirely in this phase in attack area Dels backside well the developers thought of that and Frida will go invisible and cast a healing spell periodically to make that strategy not entirely optimal instead you have to treat both targets with respect and as potential threats throughout the entire ordeal exactly the way a boss against multiples is supposed to work its only a real fault is the overly passive nature of Frida in this stage Im not being entirely disingenuous when I say that this is actually easier to ignore Frida just pay attention to her periodically when going for a heal its an interesting and mostly successful take on a multi boss fight in the first stage is a solid expansion on some ideas that werent fleshed out well enough before Music that seemed a little too easy didnt it sister Frieda is the first three stage boss fight in this series and the way they go about revealing that is nothing short of mischievously genius they actually give you the boss reward after dispatching Frieda in arendelle in the second stage relaxing the nerves and lulling you into a false sense of security before dropping this whopper of an attack on you this is just insane easily the greatest test of endurance in this series so far having to empty three entire health bars on a single go to make matters even worse for the player at this point Black Flame Frieda is not a botched third stage that ends up being the easiest this version of Frieda is the most aggressive and the fastest boss in this series with recovery times so high it becomes tricky to score even a single hit with something as quick as a rapier add on to that black flame magic attacks stacked on a beefed up frostbite attacks and even longer and faster combos they go on for absolutely forever and you have a recipe for a nightmare scenario youre dodging has got to be absolutely perfect as one mistake can leave you locked into huge combos or to get hit with frostbite which makes it even harder to dodge in the future affecting your stamina regeneration it is one of the most intense parts of the whole series and elevates this fight far above what it would have been with just the first two stages alone sister Frieda continues the trend of DLC bosses being brilliant and breaks new ground in terms of endurance and speed challenges Music and now we have what might be the final piece of content ever released for Dark Souls the Ring City DLC its first boss is an homage to ornstein and smell and its the best demon boss and the best multi boss fight in the entire series so the first sage is actually pretty similar to dark lurker its two very similar enemies demon in pain and demon from below at once in a massive open arena the twist is that the two demons switch aggressive States on timers so that one is always passive and using mostly ranged poison attacks and the other is flailing around like a rampaging ball of fury there is some bleed over between states that can see both flailing so you need to 100% run the  __  away when that is happening but otherwise its extremely well balanced and challenging the passive demons ranged attack is this poison that spreads across the ground in a huge swath from the demon overtime this is perfectly telegraphed by this purple line indicating that the attack is incoming this means you can focus your attention on the aggressive demon without having to constantly keep the passive one in sight that worked for Ornstein and smo because they had very different move sets but the flailing of both demons at once is almost impossible to avoid so its an extremely effective design choice to do it this way unlike Ornstein and smo however both demons have to be fully killed before the second stage instead of immediately transitioning once the first falls and that second stage is just Oh Applause depending on which demon died last the demon Prince will have different moves in the second stage that vary pretty drastically if demon and pain is killed last and he gains this demon Kings firestorm nuke ability on steroids that blankets basically the entire arena in fiery Armageddon this attack can be stopped if you can do enough damage to him during the build-up but he throws down a defense beforehand in the form of these two little spheres that spit fire at you and jumps a fair distance away before building it up its one of the most devastating attacks in the series and its trickier than it sounds to stop if demon from below is killed its a bit easier and said spraying a laser all across the map that is ridiculous damage I prefer fighting demon and pain myself because of the increased challenge the endurance challenge in this fight is maybe even greater than sister Freda with the demon Princes insane health bar and devastating attacks hes got this dive-bomb attack that can break the lock on this sweep from the air that leaves lingering fire trails and carries over some of the attacks from the first stage like the forward thrashing only the variety and mix ups make it much more challenging to avoid than the attacks from the first stage and the damage is so sky-high that you can be killed in a single hit under the right conditions hes not the most aggressive with follow-up attacks in a game so its not the healing animation rather the supply of Estus that becomes the biggest challenge its hard to complain about this boss if I had to complain about something it would be the occasional bleed over of aggressive states in the first stage which can be a little frustrating the demon Princes are deserving of a lot of bests due to their balanced and well considered design theyre intimidating presentation and their variety and movesets half-light spear of the church is a wonderful idea that is today ruined spectacularly by the garbage Dark Souls community on release this was a pretty fun and unique boss fight having the chance to summon a real player to aid a painting guardian for a 2v1 fight like the looking-glass night it also has the chance to summon a much less threatening NPC when the steel sea released everyone was new and it made it a much more level playing field although still heavily weighed in the invaders favor if the player doesnt summon today it is a very different story the only players still being summoned are the worst of the worst cell sword twin-blade Karthus Rouge l1 spammers that are the venom coursing through the barely alive veins of the Dark Souls community they play like the worst invaders youve ever been up against constantly running away to buddy up with the hostile painting guardians who by the way have infinite healing and spamming covenant granted magic abilities I tried this fight about five times online and its just not possible with  __  playing like this so if you are attempting this fight today I was suggest going offline to avoid having to deal with a twelve-year-old gloating that they won the most heavily stacked in their favor fight possible by spamming the left bumper playing with the NPC it feels much more balanced and the way the fight was envisioned in the first place the NPC is actually unique and is much more passive than a real player making the fight actually doable he wills the frayed blade a weapon that a lot of invaders use anyways and mixes it up with magic and ranged attacks it still feels more like a PvP fight than anything which is not my thing personally in the second stage a second painting guardian is summoned making it a 3v1 if you havent killed the first I cant deny that this fight has some good elements and I love the score Music Applause but this is not a fight that has aged well what time and I can only imagine how much worse itll be in the future when the developers arent paying any attention to hackers halfway is one of the most frustrating parts of the series when an actual player gets summoned and is only kind of unique and okay for an NPC however after washing my hands free of the filth still populating the game is the remaining two bosses in the Ring City the first is dark eater mdear the best dragon boss in the series first you have this mini boss confrontation with him on a bridge where his attacks are much more limited its kind of like killing the optional wyvern back in arch dragons peak by baiting out the same two attacks but its mostly just a setup for the fight later it ends by doing a critical attack sending him to the bottom of a big hole the fight proper is where his full move scent is unleashed and its amazing mdear is the culmination of every dragon boss so far taking all of the best elements and expanding on them mdear has the size and health of the ancient dragon the varied moveset of sin and a special unique attacks of calamy lets start with the health its perfect it actually feels like fighting something way beyond your capabilities and not just a regular enemy with wings mcdeeres health also behaves differently than most other bosses in the game taking significantly more damage to the head then the legs like most dragons and beasts bosses this encourages the player to face mdear from the front instead of abusing his size like similar beast style bosses from the front youll face mostly frantic scrambling and rampaging attacks and this firebreath that is perfectly designed to catch players running under mdear going for the tail instead its easier to deal with it by waiting a second for it to clear and then running back in for more head damage some of these combos he has at this range are mixed up to a degree that isnt seen very often even for humanoid bosses with a combo into a forward fire breath or a horizontal sweeping one or even a combo into a flailing attack or this rampaging charge that takes him a good distance across the arena and distance is your worst enemy in this fight staying close to mdear is essential because his ranged attacks are the most devastating and difficult to avoid whole series his fire breaths can cover huge swaths of the entire arena and his laser is an instant kill his second phase is very similar to the first only gaining some more dark attacks like summoning a bunch of humanity that slowly homes in on the player hes also vulnerable to a critical attack when he nears low health because this fight is so complex and can be over in a second if caught an arranged attack initial impressions suffer instead its a boss that has aged beautifully over time and now knowing all his moves I think the sheer variety and danger of this move set is absolutely the best the series has to offer when it comes to dragons at the end of the world an undead and an uncannily for the power of the Dark Soul so far the ring city has finally perfected two of its recurring boss designs it has the best multi boss fight in the series with the layered and complex demon in pain and demon from below and it produced a genuinely nails hard dragon fight against dark eater mdear so I find it in comprehensive ly impressive that they nailed the final recurring boss design the big night with a big weapon so thoroughly that it stands head and shoulders above the others in a series filled with great duels of this type slave Knight Gail is the best Dark Souls boss and Im gonna go a step beyond that and say that I think this might be my favorite boss ever so its going to be difficult to talk about this boss objectively previously I always had senator Armstrong from Metal Gear Rising is the best because of the sheer spectacle of the thing that fight in Metal Gear Rising is presented just perfectly first you have a couple of minor squabbles with somehow both hilarious and thought-provoking dialogue before being thrown into a final battle in the rubble of a giant robot that fight is accompanied by the most amazing j-rock weeb song Ive ever heard in my life and I UNAC Lee love it dont judge me Music its not the fight mechanically that I find so impressive it certainly is extremely well designed and is a lot of variety and challenged his moveset its the presentation and build up of the thing slave night Gale manages to top that fight not just in terms of spectacle but mechanically and narrative Lee - lets start with mechanics Gale has the most varied and complex mu set of any boss in this series its another three stage and each stage has a staggering amount of attacks that then completely changed by the next stage the first stage is the simplest but also has a twist that makes it interesting Gale moves very unnaturally in a similar way to the dancer he scuttles around on all fours and has some attacks that hit so fast and are so strangely telegraphed that it takes a couple of tries just to get used to them after a couple of attempts the tells are blatantly obvious and it ends up being the easiest of all three stages but that initial battle can be immensely challenging youll also notice Gails stupid amount of Health this is to compensate for it being a lengthy three phase endurance fight on the same health bar without constantly refilling like sister Frida this is what Ive been waiting for in this series a fight that can truly test endurance and still have enough variety to make it interesting once he reaches 2/3 health hell enter his second stage where his sword is empowered by the blood of the Dark Soul the way the intro is timed to the music is perfect Music the fight in this stage becomes slower but deceptively more difficult gales attacks now have an X Factor his cloak works as an after trail that will damage beyond the end of his strike just a second after the sword hits this means both that he is double dipping on damage you will be hit with both the sword and the cloak upon a failed dodge and that dodging the sword is not enough you have to properly time the dodge that it can dodge the cloak - its a minor but a brilliant twist to the basic formula the amount of iframes you have in Dark Souls 3 is pretty substantial compared to the other games that makes reflexively mashing a dodge button on an incoming attack a little bit more forgiving than in the previous games here youre punished for dodging too early and it really forces you to master his dodge timings going a bit later than normally he also pulls out some other abilities that are used as mix-ups perfect for catching a player trying to heal or applying a buff he carries her on a  __  machine gun crossbow that does huge damage if caught in a straight line and the way of white Corona which boomerangs back to him after a few seconds the first stage is reflexive aggression the second stage is honourable and tactical the third stage is desperate fury gales third stage is when this boss ascends to the absolute top of Dark Souls boss to Zions gale now has lightning attacks that are indicated with a spot on the ground before they strike this works the same way the lava does with Quelaag incentivizing more careful positioning as well as the flurry of speedy aggressive attacks Gale now has Gale is easily the most agile boss in a series and will be leaping and literally gliding all around the map leaking remnants of the Dark Souls he has consumed all with the illumination of lightning striking around the map and a pounding masterfully dramatic score in the background it is the most striking presentation of a boss in the series to date the apocalyptic desolate arena the colorful blasting of gorgeously animated effects and the deadly rage of Gale and the Dark Soul it is so visually seductive that I never want this fight to end Gale now possesses so many moves that the mix-ups become an enormous challenge to reasonably predict he still carries over his easier to predict standing circular and forward sword strikes but these are mixed up with backflipping midair crossbow attacks and long-range leaps and glides only one other boss can compare to this many moves but it still doesnt cover the distance in variety that Gale can it is the best move set of the series and yet even after saying all that somehow Gale is just as effective narrative Lee as he is mechanically and visually Gale is a slave Knight speculated to be one of the oldest undead still walking the way of white Corona being a miracle completely lost a time that only he knows he first brings you into the ashes of aerion dell dlc on behalf of the painting woman whom the community has collectively decided to call aria she wants to paint a new world similar to the painted world of ariamis in Dark Souls 1 or arendelle that she currently resides in but she wants to use the titular dark soul as pigment Gale is who goes in search of it after the events of ashes of aerion dell in the ring city youll immediately notice gales helpful messages guiding you through the ruins of the drej keith hes not just helping you hes leading you eventually youll end up in the ring city proper and at the end of the city is when you are transported to the literal end of time the world is nothing but barren plains of dust with a few remaining structures of the old world standing like idol kept monoliths and this is where Gale resides only now hes no longer your friend and yet he knows this and he still knows you gales story is tragic but ultimately triumphant his goal was to find the Dark Soul and he did finding it here in this barren place from the blood of the pygmy Lords who he has consumed hes been in search so long and consumed so many that it has ruined him and it was a certainty that Gale accounted for and a plan for by sending you to confront him his blood is the Dark Soul he sacrificed himself knowing that by consuming that pygmy Lords the Dark Soul will be reborn in himself so he sent the champion of Ash who freed his lady to finish the job he knew he could not do himself his final act is done through you giving Arya the blood of the Dark Soul to create an entire new world embedded with the most powerful thing in the dark soul series the Dark Soul itself slave night Gale is a masterpiece of a boss fight and I can say that on ironically everything this series represents the brilliant combat mechanics emphasizing patience and diligence the spectacle of the amazing artists who work on these games and the trademark wordless storytelling is at its all-time high how fitting is it that the last boss in the series ends up being the best one slave night Gale is the last boss chronologically in the final boss of the ring city but there is still one more to cap off the Dark Souls experience this is the end the end of the world smashing together the end of the cycle at the end of the age of fire and the end of the series the final boss is the soul of sinner himself taking place in the most beautifully appropriate boss arena in the entire series its like something taken straight out of an anime with a field of flowers but corrupted by Dark Souls is bleak and desolate world the soul of cinder is an amazing boss fight on so many levels the soul of cinder is not just a generic version of another swordsmen battle to close out the series the soul is quite explicitly an amalgamation of everyone who went the first flame this means yes you are literally fighting your character from the first game as well as every player connected to you in Dark Souls through shared worlds his moveset is staggeringly varied and well balanced from a ninja flipping Pyromancer to a sorcerer to a spear or straight sword wielding powerhouse it starts off with a standard straight sword move set which ends up being way faster than a boss of this size would first appear mixed in with this are some very well time delayed attacks for punishing early dodges the ninja flipping Pyromancer is easily the most threatening because he fights at the speed of a regular player using a kur sword just with increased range and damage he can even use poison and pyromancies making this the most challenging of the MU sets in this first stage theres also the transition into a spear with miracles its pretty similar to fighting a regular spear enemy but this one attack where he delays and then thrust upwards is another perfectly timed attack to punish early dodges and the final switches to a sorcerer with a usual soul arrow attacks and the not so usual death laser that sprays out for immense damage in a straight line from him with this many attacks soul of sin there easily has the most variety of any boss in the series even still its not the move set that cements this boss as one of the Greats its the story impact because if you remember anything about the first flame it wasnt just other players who became lords of cinder the solo centers second stage is him regaining full health and summoning the power of Gwyn the final boss from the first Dark Souls he gains his weapon a modified version of his moveset with a Manus like juggle combo and an a brilliant artistic choice his legendary theme from the first game Music Applause Music Applause Music its a wave of nostalgia so powerful that it elevates the final fight into something else entirely this is not just a wicked cool boss fighting its a demonic night type the combination of nostalgia and unavoidable epic finality reinforces that this is the end the end of everything is a long time series putting things to rest confidently and pulling on the experience of past titles for maximum emotional impact and in the end its these types of bosses that demonstrate dark soulss most unique contribution to boss design this visual storytelling through music and lore and presentation it treats bosses not solely as mechanical peaks but as ways to tell a story through gameplay and presentation and while I think as a series it eventually grew to have some extremely well-designed bosses that can fully stand on their own its this quality this wordless storytelling that cements Dark Souls as a memorable series as an important series and even though I love nanomachines son Ill always remember Dark Souls as the series that can say more than Hideo Kojima can with just three notes Music Applause Music steam donkey This is a series of reviews chronicling every individual boss fight in the Dark Souls series from Dark Souls 1, 2, and 3 including the DLC. Its a critical analysis examining their mechanics, move sets, and unique elements that separate them from others.The gestures at the end of each review are a rating of sorts not meant to be taken fully seriously as its difficult to sum up a complicated opinion with one gesture. Basically point forward roughly equals (decent), point down equals (mostly negative), and point up means (mostly positive), and then the others mostly speak for themselves. Timestamps: Dark Souls: 5:32 Dark Souls 2: 36:30 Dark Souls 3: 1:31:54 Notes- Im sorry this video took so long to make. I had the most production problems Ive ever had when making one of these videos including my AC going out twice, loosing my voice, having to re-edit half of the video because of my voice, and lots of real life issues causing me to have to delay production. I love doing these but this one nearly killed me. how to give a copy of a game on steam cleaning games on steam windows 10 steam deck transfer steam games to new pc steam sale.