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High Lord Wolnir

General Info
hp.jpg souls.jpg Location
15,041 22,000 Catacombs of Carthus
Drops Soul of High Lord Wolnir
Defenses
Weak Resistant Immune
Blessed Weapons, Bracelets

Dark Dark

PoisonPoison & Toxic


Bleed Bleed
Frost Frost

 

High Lord Wolnir Information

High Lord Wolnir is a boss enemy in Dark Souls 3. This colossal skeleton is imbued with deadly darkness and commands an army of skeletons to his defense.

  • You can't summon a phantom inside the room with the goblet. However, you are able to summon a phantom right before the door.
  • Not optional: must be defeated in order to traverse further into Irithyll of the Boreal Valley.

 

Location

  • Catacombs of Carthus, at the very end, up the stairs past the suspension bridge.
  • You need to touch the goblet on the altar in front of the stairs in order to trigger a cut scene and be transported in the arena.

 

Drops

  • Souls: NG (22000), NG+ (86,000), NG++ (96800), NG+3 (99000), NG+4 (105,600), NG+6 (110,000), NG+9 (112,200)
  • Other: Soul of High Lord Wolnir
  • Pickup in arena: Grave Warden Pyromancy Tome. If you didn't pick it up, it will spawn in the corner of the room with the bonfire next to the stairs.

 

Combat Information

  • Health: NG (15041), NG+ (27752), NG++ (30527), NG+3 (31915), NG+4 (33302), NG+5 (36078), NG+6 (37465), NG+7 (38853)
  • Deals Standard Damage and Dark Damage. Permanent cloud dealing dark damage coming out of his ribcage. Getting caught in this almost guarantees instant death.
  • Weak to weapons with the Blessed infusion and weapons that deal extra damage to Abyssal foes. (Farron Greatsword, Wolf Knight’s Greatsword, Anri's Straight Sword)
  • Medium resistance to Dark Damage.
  • Immune to Frostbite and Bleed 
  • Resistant to Poison and Toxic
  • May spawn a sword at any time (no bracelets are required to be broken).
  • He will move towards you if you go too far away. After doing this 3-5 times you'll be trapped against the wall and vulnerable to his dark cloud aura. However, he pulls back a good distance every time you break one of his shackles.

 

Strategies

Video Strategies

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Strategy 1 (Melee)

Wolnir is a deceptive boss to fight. On the one hand, he can be very easy if you know how to beat him, but conversely he has several attacks that can kill you very quickly. The key to the fight is breaking the shackles on his wrists. He has a huge pool of HP and while it's perfectly possible to kill him without breaking the shackles, it's not advisable. Each shackle breaking takes 1/3rd of his HP away.

When you enter the fight, make a bee-line for his right hand (your left). This shackle is the hardest to break as he moves this arm a lot and only attacks with it when he has his sword in play. Take a strong weapon and two hand it to deal maximum damage. He tends to keep his right arm near to his rib cage which Is covered with a localised dark cloud. Be careful when attacking this shackle as you can easily take damage from the cloud. If he somehow manages to get you cornered in the other side of the arena, don't be afraid to go nuts on the other shackles in an attempt to force him back.

Once you have broken the right shackle, move to the left hand and continue trying to break the other shackles. When you've broken a shackle, Wolnir will start summoning skeletons of varying stature, from regular skeleton soldiers all the way up to bonewheels. You can largely ignore these enemies as his Melee attacks will normally kill them. Only engage them if they're likely to do any damage to you. Focus instead on the shackles.

He spawns different skeletons depending on how many bracelents he has remaining. All bracelets: 3-4 normal skeletons, 2 bracelets he will spawn 3-4 normal skeletons and 2-3 bonewheel skeletons, and with 1 bracelet remaining he will spawn 2 murakumo wielding skeletons, 2 wheel skeletons and 5 normal skeletons. His normal attacks can harm the summoned skeletons and he usually kills most of them quickly. This phase can be avoided altogether if you manage to kill him quickly.

During the fight, if he lifts his head right up, run to the back of the boss room as he is about to breathe his dark cloud attack. This will deal enormous amounts of damage very quickly to you. Once he's done this attack, he'll claw his way closer to the back of the room. When he's as far up as he can go, the breath becomes a major issue. Instead of running to the back wall which will still result in death, run between his head and his ribs. The cloud attack moves forwards from his mouth, not backwards. There's only a small sweet spot where you won't take damage so be careful.

Lastly, when he brings his sword out, roll under the swipes to avoid taking damage. When he dismisses it, he will smash it into the ground and cause an AoE attack. This does physical damage and is largely unavoidable, so when you see him go to stab it into the ground use a 100% physical damage reduction shield. It'll stagger you, but you'll not take damage from the AoE.

 

Strategy 2 (Magic)

Start by moving towards Wolnir to prevent him pushing you against the back wall early on. Proceed to target Wolnir's golden bracelets (either side) and move in close, hit him a few times with a Farron Flashsword or Soul Greatsword then back off as he will attack now. Roll back to dodge his attacks then simply attack his bracelets once he places his hands back down.

Quickly target the next bracelet and get some good hits in (run up and Farron Flashsword/Soul Greatsword or Heavy/Great Soul Arrow from a distance) then be prepared for his next attack (watch carefully for his deadly breath attack, get as far away as possible to avoid it) while avoiding the skeletons that have now spawned. Wait until Wolnir wipes the skeletons away and continue the onslaught from afar or close-up. Rinse thoroughly and repeat. 

 

Strategy 3 (Sorcery with White Dragon Breath on NG+)

All you need is the spell White Dragon Breath and your standard Sorcerer equipment. When you enter the room, run to the far right side and target his left (your right) hand. Position yourself so that his bracelet is between you and the white target dot and cast WDB when his arm is down. After 2 full hits the bracelet shatters, rinse & repeat with the remaining ones. If you are quick enough he won't spawn a single enemy, the whole fight you see in the video above was over in 60 sec. Sadly this only works on NG+ because you get WDB later in the game.

 

Strategy 4 (Pyromancy)

With Great Chaos Fire Orb and +Pyromancy rings (Great Swamp RingWitch's Ring and Fire Clutch Ring) you can use both the initial damage burst as well as the short-lingering lava to break the shackles with little to no effort. As you enter the room, grab the tome and head to the left side of the room. Attack and break his right (your left) bangle before you move to the others since it's the hardest to hit and keep track of. Once you break that bangle, it's very likely he will either crawl up the hill or raise his head up to use his cursed breath attack. Just stay back and make your way to the right side of the room to his left hand and repeat the process on the remaining bangles. If he summons skeletons, your Great Chaos Fire Orb will make short work of them. Once you break 2 bangles, they become much stronger, so take out his right hand first! Make sure to dodge the hand strikes and move away from Wolnir's sword as well as his fist strikes and swipes and you are home free!

Attacks

  
Attack Name Attack Description
Dark Cloud Raises and releases a dark damage smoke cloud from his mouth that does heavy damage per second.
Has a safe spot under his head which, unlike running away, is much less likely to trigger him to move forward. Be careful of moving too far forward or to either side and hitting the cloud around his ribcage.
Summon skeletons Summons a group of skeletons using his left hand. He spawns different skeletons depending on how many bracelets he has remaining. His normal attacks can harm the summoned skeletons and he usually kills most of them quickly.
Sword summon Invokes a gigantic sword from the ground using his right hand and swipes it towards you. He can unsummon the sword by sticking it into the ground, when this happens it deals AOE damage.
Crawl Advances towards the player if he is too far to attack. Usually does this right after releasing the smoke cloud to push the player towards the back wall.
Hand slam Slams his hand down on the player with substantial tracking.
Hand swipe Sweeps the arena with his left arm, threatening damage over a large area.

 

Lore Theories

  • Wolnir does not seem to be in control of the Abyss that he is in and instead fears it, as once the bracelets are destroyed, he is devoured by the darkness.
  • "When Wolnir fell to the Abyss, he was gripped by a fear of true darkness, and pleaded to the gods for the first time. This holy sword, together with three armlets stripped from the corpses of clerics, gave him some semblance of comfort." - Wolnir's Holy Sword.

 

 

Notes & Trivia

  • Exploit: If you run all the way back after you enter the area, Wolnir will follow you until it can no longer do so. Head to either side and stay near Wolnir's wrists, and then continue to attack his bracelets. None of his attacks will hit you, although the skeletons he summons will still target you.
  • The band on his right hand (your left) is harder to hit as Wolnir doesn't leave it down as long. Thus, it's recommended to break that one first during the easier part of the fight.
  • He takes much more damage on his bracelets before waking up (first one was two swings of a fire broadsword+2, others were 6 or so).
  • From footage of older trailer Wolnir was apparently meant to be in a different place, or have a different arena.
  • When Wolnir is asleep, his HP is lower by about 2/3, comparing to state, when he is not asleep.
  • Pestilent Mist does not wake him up, what makes him very easy to kill.
  • Killing Wolnir with at least 1 remaining bracelet will trigger different death animation.
  • Oddly, if the player instantly follows Wolnir once he is killed, they will simply see a wall where the Abyss is supposed to be; Wolnir simply disappears.

 

Gallery

 

 




    • Anonymous

      13 Jun 2018 08:49  

      I literally cheesed it with Pestilent Mist. Cast it on his left hand and since the damage is so low per tick he doesn't get aggroed and won't attack.

      • Anonymous

        30 May 2018 14:02  

        Yeah... I had to go change pants the first time I saw him creeping out of the darkness.
        I had to change pants again when he was dragged back into the darkness, too.

        • Anonymous

          26 May 2018 12:25  

          I beat him 1st try in 45 seconds without getting hit
          I just used the meele attacks with my axe.It does 262 physical damage.

          • Anonymous

            09 May 2018 21:50  

            An easier Sorcery strategy is to use Pestilent Mist. You can cast it on him without him aggroing, then simply sit back and let him die. Takes about 5-6 casts of Pestilent Mist to do this, and he only aggros if you get too close.

            • Anonymous

              09 May 2018 06:25  

              I wasnt able to find and NPC phantoms to help me in this fight. (I'm playing offline for NG.)

              Yes I was embered.

              • Anonymous

                22 Apr 2018 19:32  

                Dragon god, Bed of Chaos, Wolnir. There are people out there who could have created interesting bosses out of all of these (Sony). But FROM has no idea what they are doing.

                • Anonymous

                  20 Apr 2018 22:52  

                  Nitpicking here, but for strategy 3: WDB is definitely available in NG before this fight. Killing Dancer early gives you access to Oceiros, and thus, his soul and the spell.

                  • Anonymous

                    14 Apr 2018 22:13  

                    This guy actually made me throw my controller. Not because he is hard but because he is glitchy. One time I fought him and almost killed him then got ass raped by an immortal baby skeleton. The very next time I almost kill him again but get trapped between his armpit and the wall and died to his chest cloud.

                    • Anonymous

                      05 Apr 2018 21:20  

                      Anyone else have a bug where his skeletons he summons can't be hit? I swung at a bonewheel skeleton and my weapon went right through it. It's happened with others in different attempts as well.

                      • Anonymous

                        02 Apr 2018 15:46  

                        My FPS drops massively during and before the fight, in the room where the boss fight can be activated. Does anyone know what is causing this or how to fix this? (PC)

                        • Anonymous

                          04 Mar 2018 23:33  

                          IDK about anyone else but i beat this game 6-9 times already and never had a problem with this boss. Then i tried a miracle build and every time i went in the room to fight him he would ingore me and just climb up the slope to the very top then use his breath attack. He would continue to do this every time i fought him. I dont know if it was a glitch or just bad luck but i had to get way overpowerd to finaly beat him.

                          • Anonymous

                            02 Mar 2018 05:43  

                            Probably the most over hyped boss. I mean you see the description of his crown and its all like "he conquered like everyone and stuff" and then i go in there, doent get hurt at all, he never summons skeletons but he almost spooked me. Kinda funny how he's like the easiest boss in one of the most annoying areas. (imo) Talk about over compensation

                            • Anonymous

                              17 Feb 2018 22:38  

                              I broke all of those magic pots in the room because I thought the boss would activate them, and then he just teleports us away..

                              • Anonymous

                                09 Feb 2018 09:39  

                                Okay, maybe I shouldn't have wiki'd this boss. Just rushing for the shackles totally trivializes the fight. Each shackle only took 4 hits with +3 BKS. Fight only lasted about 15 seconds and took no damage. I feel cheap now.

                                • Anonymous

                                  03 Feb 2018 22:44  

                                  His bracelets break easily with a few great heavy soul arrows. Even with heavy and great soul arrows if you can't afford the requirement for the first.

                                  • Anonymous

                                    03 Feb 2018 21:33  

                                    This boss is broken for summons. I’ve been summoned several times to help out with this boss and the moment I arrive my health drops instantly, as if I’m in his fog cloud, despite me being a very far distance away that not even his breath should reach me. I can only lag is the issue but it has never been this bad this consistently.

                                    • Anonymous

                                      22 Jan 2018 15:26  

                                      Just saying, but if you have atleast 30intel, just buy Pestilent Mist and don't even bother. When you get in the boss room, cast it on his right arm and watch his hp go down. Might take some casts to get him fully down, but it is the simplest and easiest way to defeat Wolnir.

                                      As for people who care about the tome that Wolnir guards, you can pick it up when he is nearly dead or you can pick it up right after you kill him : before you take the stairs, in a little space on the left there will be the pyromancy tome.

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