Dark Souls 3 Boss Guide: How to Beat the Demon Prince, Demon in Pain, and Demon from Below
Coming fresh from my hard-earned victory against the Demon Prince and his two vessels -- Demon in Pain and Demon from Below -- I must admit that my head is still spinning with adrenaline. The first boss fight in The Ringed City DLC for Dark Souls 3 is, simply put, tough as nails.
I butt my head against this boss for hours trying to crack its secrets and puzzle over how it all fits together, and I've finally struck gold. If you're having problems with ridiculous homing attacks and meteors in the final phase, there's a trick to get around that.
But before we dive into analyzing the Demon Prince fight itself, we must first understand the two "mini"-bosses who serve as your opponents for the first phase.
How to Beat the Demon in Pain and Demon from Below in Dark Souls 3
The Ringed City's Demon in Pain and Demon from Below both jump into action the moment your fall is broken by a soft pile of ash, ganging up on you much like the majority of Dark Souls 3's growing roster of kick-your-teeth-in boss fights.
They seem to sporadically spew poison and fire at random, but if you're observant you can spot a suspicious pattern. They actually share the same moveset and alternate between two different states during battle.
- A Demon in the Kindled state will put the fire under your ass with aggressive, close-ranged attacks. They are lit up by embers and easy to see in the dark arena. Eventually, they burn out into an Unkindled state through pounding the ground in a fiery explosion.
- A Demon in the Unkindled state spews toxic clouds and shoots toxic lasers at medium to long-range. They are unlit and generally hard to see in the dark arena. Upon swapping to a Kindled state, they let loose a mighty roar.
Knowing this, you'll notice that the fight always begins with the Demon in Pain Unkindled and the Demon from Below Kindled. Each will eventually swap states on their own time throughout the battle.
Try to be aware of both the Demon in Pain and Demon from Below at all times. The camera is fiddly, and you'll have to maneuver so that they both remain relatively on-screen while locked onto your main target.
Speaking of main targets, it's also a good idea to focus your initial efforts on a demon of your choosing until it dies. After one of them dies, the other Kindles up (if they aren't already) and remains in that state for the rest of the fight.
Note that the Demon you kill last has an impact on the boss's moveset in the final phase, which I'll detail in the next section. Keep this in mind when you decide whether to kill the Demon in Pain or Demon from Below first.
How to Beat the Demon Prince in Dark Souls 3
Upon finally defeating the second Demon, it crumples over in death shortly before bursting into flames and reincarnating into the Demon Prince -- an intimidating final phase for the first boss of Dark Souls 3's The Ringed City DLC.
While he retains some of the Kindled moveset of the previous phase, his abilities are now augmented by flight-capable wings and some incredible firepower. In addition to that, the Demon he resurrects from holds sway over some of his more interesting and game-changing attacks.
- If he is reincarnated from the Demon in Pain, he gets an annoyingly aggressive homing attack that's shortly followed by a meteor storm with a huge area of effect.
- If he is reincarnated from the Demon from Below, he gets a laser attack that hits in a zig-zag in front of him, followed by a powerful laser aimed straight ahead, coupled with a burst of energy that only hits within melee range.
Judging from these two descriptions, I bet you can guess which incarnation of the Demon Prince is easier to deal with. There doesn't seem to be different prizes, either, so there's almost no reason to put yourself through the hell of homing attacks and meteor storms. Stick to the easily punishable lasers and you'll be golden.
Additionally, the final phase of the boss is far more resilient than the two from in the first phase. It'll take quite a few hits to bring him down, so take your time and don't get greedy. Conserve your Estus, don't give up, and eventually you'll reach the bottom of his obtuse health bar.
After finally defeating the Demon Prince and stealing his soul, you can light the bonfire and pick up the Small Envoy Banner that can be used to further access new areas of The Ringed City.
While you're at it, why not kindle our comments section below with your own strategies for this boss? And if you need more help be sure to check our other guides on Dark Souls 3's latest DLC.