How to beat the Blackgaol Knight in Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree DLC

The Blackgaol Knight is one of the earliest bosses in the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC. However, he is quite a formidable foe and can take down lower-Vigor players with only a hit or two. His set is remarkably good, so here is how to defeat the Blackgaol Knight.

How to find the Blackgaol Knight in Shadow of the Erdtree

Map of the Nameless Mausoleum in Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree.
The Blackgaol Knight is located near the Scorched Ruins. Screenshot by Dot Esports

The Blackgaol Knight is located east of the Scorched Ruins in a dungeon called the Western Nameless Mausoleum. The dungeon is very small and harbors just the knight, and also has a stake of Marika nearby so the runback is short in case you get killed. Worry not, though, our guide will ensure that that doesn’t happen!

How to kill the Blackgaol Knight in Shadow of the Erdtree

Blackgaol Knight is a tough early challenge in the DLC. Video by Dot Esports

The Blackgaol Knight is a formidable opponent. He has extremely high Poise, can attack you from range with either his Crossbow or Weapon Arts, and even loves to rush you down with jump attacks and broad swings from his Greatsword. Attacking him head-on isn’t an option unless you’re playing a fully armored giant. Even then, given how the DLC’s leveling functions, you might want to take a different approach. Here’s what you need to do to defeat the Blackgaol Knight:

Avoid him and collect Scadutree Blessings

Before you try to beat the Blackgaol Knight, you may want to get a few Scadutree Blessings or Revered Spirit Ash Blessings before jumping in. These items are DLC-specific leveling tools that will increase your damage output and decrease how much damage you take. The Blackgaol Knight and other NPC opponents dish out significant damage if these blessings are at zero. You can find several at the first Grace near the entrance to Belurat, west of Scorched Ruins at the Church of Consolation, and one at the Main Belurat Gate.

Don’t rush him when you enter the boss arena

Blackgaol Knight shooting a barrage of arrows in Elden Ring Shadow of the Erdtree.
The barrage of arrows can be devastating if it lands. Screenshot by Dot Esports

The Blackgaol Knight starts his boss fight usually by cocking his Crossbow and firing a volley straight at you. The arrows get increasingly faster, but it’s generally a short burst that is easily dodged by walking to the side. However, if you decide to rush him and he gets the shots off, you will take huge damage that, if you are on the lower side with Vigor, will almost certainly kill you. Take your time with this boss as he can be unpredictable and kill you without your realizing it.

Keep your distance

Make sure to always maintain a medium distance between yourself and the Blackgaol Knight since his close-range attacks can bring you down very quickly regardless of the armor you’re wearing. Make use of said distance to do damage with Ashes of War or with your longer-ranged weapons. I’ve personally used two katanas, a Blood Nagakiba and Rivers of Blood, and the latter’s Corpse Piler to do incredible bleed damage from a safe distance. If the Knight closes in, dodge and reset the distance. He will also eventually try to heal

If you struggle, come back later!

It’s no shame to give up on a boss fight in Elden Ring to search for better gear and upgrades to empower yourself to try again. The game is designed to be approached in such a way, so don’t fret about not being able to kill a boss on the first try. Explore a bit, collect some more Blessings, and you should have no issue tackling the Blackgaol Knight.

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