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How to beat Blackgaol Knight in Elden Ring Shadow Of The Erdtree

Here's the weakness, location, and rewards of the Blackgaol Knight in Shadow of the Erdtree

An image of the Blackgaol Knight in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdree, standing with Greatsword and Repeating Crossbow at the ready.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

Trying to beat the Blackgaol Knight in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree? Challenge runs high from the very beginning of Elden Ring's huge new DLC, Shadow Of The Erdtree, and this is particularly true when it comes to the Blackgaol Knight, an early boss.

While he might be accessible immediately after entering the Lands Of Shadow, the Blackgaol Knight hits like a tank, with a Greatsword and Repeating Crossbow combo that'll keep you on your toes. In this guide, we'll explain exactly what you need to do to beat him.

In this guide:

How to beat Blackgaol Knight in Shadow Of The Erdtree

To defeat the Blackgaol Knight, you'll need to rely on your own tactics, as Spirit Ash summons aren't available during the fight. Abide by the following tips for an eventual victory:

1. Immediately dash towards the Blackgaol Knight to get off a few hits before he can load up his Repeating Crossbow.

Attacking the Blackgaol Knight with the Carian Greatsword Sorcery in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree.
A Greatsword will come in mighty handy during this tough fight. Watch out for the Blackgaol Knight's own Greatsword too! | Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

The Blackgaol Knight can be interruped with multiple strikes from heavy weapons. If you have a Greatsword (or the Carian Greatsword Sorcery, which is what I used), you should be able to interrupt his attack and get five or six strikes on him before he can react, taking off about a third of his health bar.

2. Once you're out of stamina, roll to dodge the strikes from the Blackgaol Knight's Greatsword, which has tremendous range.

The Blackgaol Knight usually strikes in three swift arcs which you can disrupt if you get behind him and attack or parry his blows. Occasionally, he'll unleash a jumping Greatsword slash. If you manage to hit him while he's in air, he'll be knocked onto his back. Otherwise, it's tough to stagger the Blackgaol Knight, as his poise is very high.

3. When the Blackgaol Knight raises his Greatsword in the air above his helm and glows white, roll out of the way immediately.

It's very important to recognise this telegraph, as the Blackgaol Knight will unleash a vertical wave of energy directly at your last location. It's easy to avoid if you know it's coming, but get hit once, and a huge section of your health bar will be in shambles instantly.

4. If the Blackgaol Knight ever loads his Repeating Crossbow, try to get close and attack. If not, dodge.

Avoiding the Blackgaol Knight's exploding Crossbow bolts in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree.
The Blackgaol Knight's Crossbow blasts are annoying but not too tough to avoid, though rolling past them makes it tricky to find a spare moment to heal during this fight. | Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

The Blackgaol Knight's Crossbow loading time marks the best chance to attack him. Of course, if it's impossible to approach him before he begins shooting, strafe around him and you'll easily avoid his line of fire. The Blackgaol Knight shoots both regular bolts and exploding flame blots, and typically switches to the Crossbow whenever you're a good distance away from him or when you're resorting to heals.

5. The Blackgaol Knight will heal himself when more than half of his health is gone.

You can keep him from doing this by continuously applying pressure, but if you don't manage to hit him in time, no worries. He only has one heal.

6. If you're an Incantation or Sorcery user, be aware that the Blackgaol Knight will roll around many long-range attacks.

Targeting the Blackgaol Knight will be an effort, and AoE spells like Meteorite will be too slow in this fight. Rely on faster magics like Black Flame or Comet, and try to catch him when his back is turned or he's in mid-attack animation. Your best option is to use a magical weapon if you've got one, however. The Royal Greatsword from Blaidd's quest in the base game scales with Intelligence and is a good choice; alternately, the previously-mention Carian Greatsword Sorcerery works great.

Blackgaol Knight location in Shadow Of The Erdtree

A map of the Shadow Realm in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree, showing the location of the Western Nameless Mausoleum
Standing in front of the Western Nameless Mausoleum in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree.
You can find the Blackgaol Knight's hideout immediately after starting Shadow Of The Erdtree. You don't even need to enter a dungeon first before fighting him. | Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

If you're wondering where you can find the Blackgaol Knight, head to the Western Nameless Mausoleum, which is located in the northwest of your starting point at the Gravesite Plain Site of Grace. You can also find the mausoleum by heading east from the Scorched Ruin Site of Grace.

There's no dungeon to confront in the Western Nameless Mausoleum - get ready for a boss fight (and Crossbow bolts to the face) as soon as you enter its door.

Blackgaol Knight rewards

Wearing multiple pieces of Solitude armour, after defeating the Blackgaol Knight in Elden Ring: Shadow Of The Erdtree.
A fine armour set, well worth the time it takes to beat this early boss. | Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Bandai Namco

After you've killed the Blackgaol Knight, you'll receive the following:

  • Greatsword of Solitude
  • Helm of Solitude
  • Armor of Solitude
  • Gauntlets of Solitude
  • Greaves of Solitude
  • 70,000 runes

Aside from looking cool, all of these pieces of Solitude armour constitute an excellent set for taking on the challenges of the Land of Shadow, and the physical protection they offer is an immediate cut above the vast majority of armour sets from the Lands Between. A fitting reward for a tough boss right at the onset of Shadow Of The Erdtree!

That's all we've got on beating the Blackgaol Knight, who's just the start of the bosses available in Elden Ring's expansive DLC. If you need more assistance, we have a guide on the locations of all 78 bosses in the Land of Shadow for your perusal, as well as a guide on the best order to fight these bosses. Good luck!

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