Looking Back: The Absolute Hardest Dark Souls Bosses of All Time

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Wipe the blood off your screen, ladies and gentlemen, 'cause we're going to look back at some of the toughest bosses that ever stomped you flat, cut you in half, or incinerated your pitiful little soul. These are of course the Dark Souls bosses which made you rage, shout, and beat you down until you finally overcame them.

But what was the first thought that popped into your head when you saw that image? Was it seething rage? Suffocating despair? Traumatic flashbacks that made you go numb?

All of the above?

Fantastic! Let's keep going and count down the hardest Dark Souls bosses to date.

It won't be pretty, but if you can make it to the end, you just might have what it takes to go back and show them who is really the boss.

The Four Kings

Dark Souls

Trapped in a pitch-black void, a single King appears before you. You battle, exchanging blows, and just when you think you've won, a second appears. Then a third. Then a fourth. Then you die.

They spawn in every 40 seconds until you're facing four Kings, giving you less than a minute to kill one before you become outnumbered. And with the four of them all wielding magic swords and homing missiles, it's all too easy to become overwhelmed if you can't slay them quickly enough.

The Twin Princes

Dark Souls 3

Lorian, the elder Prince, despite being crippled, comes at you on his knees with sword in hand. You engage him and score a few hits when he suddenly teleports away. He charges his blade with holy energy and slams it into the ground, sending incredibly powerful light straight at you. Dodging your blows with teleports right to your blind spots and striking at you, the Prince does not fall easily.

And when he finally does, Lothric, the slimy little younger Prince revives him and gangs up on you. Jerk.

Lorian still attacks with his sword, teleporting around and coming at you from behind, but now with Lothric launching homing spells and soul spears. If that weren't annoying enough, he also revives Lorian anytime he is defeated, meaning you need to focus on the younger brother to end the fight.

Smelter Demon

Dark Souls 2

An enormous hulk covered in flames and armor, this monster is entirely optional and you should probably avoid him.

His gigantic sword puts Sephiroth's katana to shame and can reach across nearly the entire room, and once you whittle him down to half health, he covers the titanic blade in flames. Hell, even just standing close to him burns you, so get your damage in fast.

And this guy's damage is insane. He can easily kill you in only a few hits, so be vigilant as you slowly pick his gigantic health pool apart.

Nameless King

Dark Souls 3

Wanna fight a super powerful king?

How about his wyvern?

Okay. Now how about both at the same time?

Blasting you with lightning spears while his steed bites at you and rains down fire from its maw, this guy is considered the toughest boss in all of Dark Souls 3 by a lot of folks. Just keeping your eye on them is a challenge in and of itself as they fly around you. 

And once you manage to drop the beast, the King himself is still a deadly threat. He's both fast and strong with erratic movements that can be hard to predict. His lightning blast and lunge are both particularly powerful and can easily kill an unprepared player.

Just make sure you're equipped with lightning resistant items.

Dragon Slayer Ornstein & Executioner Smough

Dark Souls

Just like those jerk Princes, you have to fight these guys two-on-one.

Ornstein is incredibly fast and uses various lightning spells and spear attacks to destroy you from a distance. Smough is slow but incredibly strong, and can just absolutely crush you with his gigantic hammer. Combining them makes for a very solid balance of close and long range attacks to keep you on your toes.

You must balance them, dancing back and forth and side to side, using the various pillars around for cover. And after a hard fought battle when one finally falls, they are absorbed by the other, making for a one-on-one with a now-buffed enemy.

This also means that should you go back for a second play-through, you must kill them in the opposite order and face a different second phase battle in order to get both specific drops.

Fortunately, you can summon Solaire of Astoria to help you even the odds.

Soul of Cinder

Dark Souls 3

The final boss of Dark Souls 3, the Soul of Cinder is a fittingly difficult encounter.

Starting off with a simple one-handed sword fight, he quickly begins adding movesets to his repertoire. Transforming his sword into a stave or catalyst, his fighting styles quickly raise the stakes.

Fire magic, homing missiles, healing, and a dozen other abilities, the Soul of Cinder easily has the most extensive list of abilities in the game.

And after his first health bar is depleted, he will heal himself and stop holding back. He becomes faster, hits harder, and can use a Sunlight Spear ability that has three different forms.

His typical sword form can be dealt with as with Gwyn from the first Dark Souls but beware his ultimate combo. If caught in it, he can juggle the player with his blows then slam them into the ground with a fiery explosion. This single combo is enough to completely deplete a player's health if you aren't careful.

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Now you know the hardest Dark Souls bosses and what to expect, if you can get past the hair-pulling madness of dying over and over again long enough to defeat them, then you can take on anything. But if we have forgotten any of the hardest Souls bosses, let us know in the comments below!

Published Apr. 15th 2017

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Aspiring author and video game enthusiast just waiting to become rich and famous and loved by everyone.


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