Major Bosses

  • The major bosses can only be killed once per playthrough. The reward for defeating such bosses varies between Humanity, Twin Humanities, or in rare cases Homeward Bones.
  • The required bosses must be killed to finish the game, whereas the optional ones may be avoided.
  • The Souls column represents the amount of souls you get during your first playthrough. For each New Game Plus, that amount increases proportionally.
  • Even though some of these boss fights don't immediately start after you enter the fog gate, you cannot go back out through the fog gate. If you want to exit, you can use a Homeward Bone or Homeward miracle, and be returned to the last bonfire you rested at. Alternatively, you can quit the game, and when you reload, you will be in front of the boss' fog gate.
Boss Loot Souls Area Required? Notes
Asylum Demon Demon's Great Hammer 2,000 Undead Asylum Yes Only drops his loot if you kill him the very first time you meet him in a playthrough.
Bed of Chaos Lord's Soul 60,000 Lost Izalith Yes After killing it, Quelana will now gift you the Fire Tempest pyromancy
Bell Gargoyles Gargoyle Helm
Gargoyle Halberd
Gargoyle's Shield
Gargoyle Tail Axe (tail cut)
10,000 Undead Parish Yes Except for Gargoyle Tail Axe, their loot doesn't have 100% drop rate.
Black Dragon Kalameet Calamity Ring
Obsidian Greatsword (tail cut)
60,000 Royal Wood No Need to trigger a specific event involving Hawkeye Gough to normally fight him, although you can kill him without Gough.
Capra Demon Demon Great Machete 6,000 Lower Undead Burg No With the Master Key, or by using the elevator near the Darkroot Basin bonfire, you do not need to get to the Undead Burg, Lower Undead Burg, or Depths, as you can get to Blighttown through the Valley of Drakes.
His loot doesn't have 100% drop rate.
Ceaseless Discharge None 20,000 Demon Ruins No It's possible to run through the lava even without the Orange Charred Ring. High HP, high Fire Resistance, and Dark Wood Grain Ring needed. The second bonfire won't appear, but you can kill Demon Firesage to make it appear.
Centipede Demon Orange Charred Ring 40,000 Demon Ruins No If you have the Chaos Servant +2 covenant, you can use the shortcut to Lost Izalith before even entering Demon Firesage's fog gate.
Chaos Witch Quelaag Soul of Quelaag 20,000 Blighttown Yes -
Crossbreed Priscilla Soul of Priscilla
Priscilla's Dagger (tail cut)
30,000 Painted World of Ariamis No Killing her counts as sin.
Dark Sun Gwyndolin Soul of Gwyndolin 40,000 Anor Londo No Killing Gwyndolin breaks the Blade of the Darkmoon covenant.
Demon Firesage Demon's Catalyst 20,000 Demon Ruins No If you have the Chaos Servant +2 covenant, you can use the shortcut to Lost Izalith before even entering this boss' fog gate. Demon Firesage and Stray Demon have identical movesets and nearly identical stats.
Dragon Slayer Ornstein &
Executioner Smough
Soul of Smough (Smough)
Soul of Ornstein (Ornstein)
Leo Ring (Ornstein)
50,000 Anor Londo Yes Their drops depend on whom you kill last. The equipment sold by Domhnall of Zena also depends on whom you kill last.
Four Kings Bequeathed Lord Soul Shard 60,000 The Abyss Yes Covenant of Artorias needed to fight them.
Gaping Dragon Blighttown Key
Dragon King Greataxe (tail cut)
25,000 Depths No With the Master Key, or by using the elevator near the Darkroot Basin bonfire, you do not need to get to the Undead Burg, Lower Undead Burg, or Depths, as you can use the Valley of Drakes shortcut.
Gravelord Nito Lord's Soul 60,000 Tomb of the Giants Yes Does not break Gravelord Servant covenant if you kill him, but you can't raise the covenant's rank afterward in that playthrough.
Gwyn, Lord of Cinder Soul of Gwyn, Lord of Cinder 70,000 Kiln of the First Flame Yes Once you kill him, you will not be able to leave without ending the current playthrough.
Iron Golem Core of an Iron Golem 40,000 Sen's Fortress Yes It is possible to knock them off of the platform, instantly killing them.
Knight Artorias Soul of Artorias 50,000 Royal Wood No -
Manus, Father of the Abyss Soul of Manus 60,000 Chasm of the Abyss No -
Moonlight Butterfly Soul of the Moonlight Butterfly 10,000 Darkroot Garden No Guards the Divine Ember and Watchtower Basement Key
Pinwheel Mask of the Child
Mask of the Mother
Mask of the Father
Rite of Kindling
15,000 The Catacombs Yes Can be skipped by using an exploit. See the page for more details.
He will always drop a mask, but which mask you get is random.
Sanctuary Guardian Guardian Soul
Guardian Tail (tail cut)
30,000 Sanctuary Garden No Two respawning Lesser Sanctuary Guardians can be found in the same area after the defeat of Artorias.
Seath the Scaleless Bequeathed Lord Soul Shard
Moonlight Greatsword (tail cut)
60,000 The Duke's Archives
Crystal Cave
Yes You can skip the first encounter with Seath (Video). Killing Seath at the Crystal Cave after skipping opens up the archives, including the prison.
Sif, the Great Grey Wolf Soul of Sif
Covenant of Artorias
40,000 Darkroot Garden Yes Killing it does not break the forest hunter covenant.
Stray Demon Titanite Slab 20,000 Undead Asylum (Revisited) No Demon Firesage and Stray Demon have identical movesets and nearly identical stats.
Taurus Demon Demon's Greataxe 3,000 Undead Burg No Although possible, if not in NG+ the Taurus Demon is nearly impossible to avoid. The path through the door behind Havel in the same tower as the Taurus Demon's fog gate can be opened using a Master Key, opening to Darkroot Basin next to the Hydra, the player can go back to Darkroot Garden, through the Undead Parish backward to the Altar of Sunlight, and end up near where the Taurus Demon fight ends up. His loot doesn't have 100% drop rate.


Boss Loot Location
Armored Tusk Fang Boar Helm Undead Parish
The Duke's Archives
Black Knight Black Knight Sword
Black Knight Greatsword
Black Knight Greataxe
Black Knight Halberd
Black Knight Shield
Titanite Chunk
Red Titanite Chunk
Blue Titanite Chunk
White Titanite Chunk
Undead Asylum (revisited)
Undead Burg
Undead Parish
The Catacombs
Darkroot Basin
Tomb of the Giants
Butcher Sack Depths
Golden Crystal Golem None Darkroot Basin
The Duke's Archives
Giant Undead Rat Humanity Depths
Havel the Rock Havel's Ring Undead Burg
Hellkite Dragon Drake Sword (tail cut) Undead Burg
Hydra Dragon Scale Darkroot Basin
Ash Lake
Parasitic Wall Hugger None Blighttown
Prowling Demon Demon Titanite
Titanite Catch Pole
Undead Parish
Sen's Fortress
Anor Londo
The Catacombs
Lost Izalith
Undead Dragon Dragon Scale Valley of Drakes
Painted World of Ariamis
Undead Prince Ricard Ricard's Rapier Sen's Fortress

Order of major bosses

Since Dark Souls is more-or-less an open-world RPG (though "seamless" would be the better word), it is not always easy to find the next boss you should defeat to advance; this is a list that shows an example of an order in which you can beat the bosses. Since you can access many places right from the start, there are not many restrictions on which order to use to defeat the bosses.

Ringing the first bell

  • You start in the Northern Undead Asylum, the tutorial area. The boss here is the Asylum Demon, but the very first time you meet him fighting is optional. An open door to the left of the entrance will allow the player to skip the boss temporarily. After acquiring a decent weapon, however, the player will be required to face the Asylum Demon yet again. This second encounter is not optional.
  • Your next boss encounter is the Taurus Demon in the Undead Burg. You'll find it after the first bonfire between two castle towers on top of the castle walls. Players with the Master Key may skip this boss by unlocking a door before the fog door. This door leads to Havel the Rock who is guarding yet another door which must be opened with the Master Key. This door leads to Darkroot Basin. To access the other side of the Taurus Demon's zone, follow Darkroot Basin -> Darkroot Garden -> Undead Parish -> Undead Burg. Note that this route is much more complicated than fighting the Taurus Demon itself.
  • Within the Undead Parish, a non-respawning tower knight and six-eyed channeller guard the path to the Bell Gargoyles. They are technically optional as a player may run past to the fog door, but defeating them is highly recommended as they never respawn.
  • Venturing on you'll have to fight the two Bell Gargoyles on a rooftop. They're guarding the first bell you need to ring.

Ringing the second bell

Note : The Capra Demon and the Gaping Dragon are actually optional, as there is a shortcut, if you want to skip these, take this path: Undead Parish -> Darkroot Garden -> Darkroot Basin -> Valley of Drakes -> Blighttown (this way you don't need the keys these two bosses drop, making them optional) Alternatively, if you have the master key, you can take this path: New Londo Ruins -> Valley of Drakes -> Blighttown. Just take the elevator down from the undead parish to the Firelink Shrine.

  • Next step is the Capra Demon far down in the depths of the Undead Burg. Kill it, and you'll get a key to open up the door that leads to the next area.
  • Now it's time to find your way to the second bell. Your first boss on this journey will be the Gaping Dragon, located in the Depths. This area is accessed via the Lower Undead Burg.
  • From the Depths you can now access Blighttown with a key, there is no required boss here, but there is an optional mini-boss, the Parasitic Wall Hugger. This mini-boss may be defeated from a range, but note that a path leads to the tunnel it is covering. From this path, it may be beaten in melee and does not fight back.
  • Once you made your way down to the swamp at the bottom of Blighttown, walk up to the spiked hill on the far side. It contains the next essential boss, Chaos Witch Quelaag. She is guarding the second bell.

Meeting some more requirements

Note: These two below are required, but you can do them in any order you want.

Getting the Lordvessel

The Lordvessel is an essential item in the story of Dark Souls that you need to get your hands on. Getting it will also lift the orange fog opening up new areas you couldn't access until now.

  • Ringing the second bell opens up the large gate near the Undead Parish. The gate leads to Sen's Fortress, a nasty dungeon full of traps and enemies. Make your way up to the top and fight the Iron Golem. It's a pretty easy battle compared to the nasty dungeon you had to go through. A shortcut to the entrance of the Fortress may be unlocked using the Cage Key on a cage near the Iron Golem boss door.
  • Once the iron golem is history, touch the ring of light at the middle of the boss area, and you will be dragged away to Anor Londo (talk to the gargoyle atop the wall to return if you need to). Your next target (which may take time reaching) is to kill the dynamic duo of Dragon Slayer Ornstein / Executioner Smough. One of the harder battles, but never forget you can summon other players for help.
  • Now the path (elevators left or right) to Gwynevere, Princess of Sunlight is opened up. Talk to her and get the Lordvessel; this lifts the orange fog doors blocking the path to The Duke's Archives, Demon Firesage, and Tomb of the Giants. Your next step is to fill the Lordvessel with the four Lord Souls.

Filling the Lordvessel

So after the orange fog is lifted, three new areas open up, each with one of the holders of the Lord Souls. Note that The Four Kings are accessible before attaining the Lordvessel.
** Note:** There is no order in which you have to kill them. You only need to retrieve their Lord Souls and feed them to the Lordvessel, so select as you like from below :

Confronting Gwyn

Important Note: After killing Gwyn, the game is over. If you touch the bonfire or leave the game, it's over, and you'll see yourself starting from the beginning with a New Game Plus. So if you want to do other things (such as optional bosses or farming), don't kill him yet!

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