Dark Souls 3 is full of tough and diverse bosses. Many are one single character, mostly of the giant variety, who smash the player into tiny bits with huge weapons. Others are smaller, faster, and often feature multiple foes that the player has to deal with at the same time. The Abyss Watchers are in this latter group, and they are one of the tougher bosses in all of Dark Souls 3. They are also one of the four Lords of Cinder that you have to defeat in order to beat Dark Souls 3. So beating the Abyss Watchers is pretty important. With that in mind we put together this guide for how to beat the Abyss Watchers in Dark Souls 3, just to give you some helpful tips and tricks.

First up, this fight, like so many in the game, takes place through two distinct phases. The first of these is where you will have to deal with multiple foes, as more and more Abyss Watchers are awakened to fight against you. The main enemy is the only one that you can attack and actually deal damage against the overall boss’ health, so focus on him if/when you can. He fights like most enemies in Dark Souls 3, so most of your general combat strategies will be useful here. He’s fast though, and can deal a ton of damage if he catches you off guard. Use your shield and dodge move to avoid this, and wait for an opening. When you have one, hit as much as you can, as most of your hits will stagger him.

Once a second Abyss Watcher wakes up you probably want to pull back. The key here is that if there are three total Abyss Watchers in the room, they will begin fighting amongst themselves. Use this as a distraction to heal up with your Estus Flask, and get prepped to slam the main boss. Keep your targeting reticle on him throughout the fight, avoiding any confusion once more spawn. Then when they begin fighting each other, move in and get a backstab, or just a nice combo. Do enough damage and you’ll trigger the second phase, which is much simpler, but also a lot harder.

During the second phase of the Abyss Watchers boss fight, the boss will ignite his sword on fire. All of his attacks will be more devastating in almost every way, so be ready to go defensive when necessary. Keep your distance, wait for him to finish a combo, then move in for the strike. Get in just a hit or two and pull back as soon as possible. This should take him out, though it might take a lot of tries. Once you get the pattern down you can use Ember before the fight to give you that extra boost.

This will also allow you to call in some support, as there are a few summons that you can do for the Abyss Watchers fight. Sirris of the Sunless Realms, Londor Pale Shade, and Black Hand Gotthard can all be summoned if you’ve met them and met the requirements for calling them for help. If you see the summoning signs, which are outside on the stairs or inside and to the left, then use them once you are ready to take out the Abyss Watchers.

After you beat the Abyss Watchers in Dark Souls 3 you are well on your way to the end of the game. Check out our other guides for help with everything else that might trouble you with the game.