Elden Ring is FromSoftware’s most ambitious game yet, featuring a massive open-world that you can explore freely, along with a crap ton of bosses to fight. Truly, there are over 100 boss encounters in this game, and you likely won’t even see them all in your first or second playthroughs.
In this article, we’ll be ranking every major boss in Elden Ring from easiest to hardest. However, for the sake of my own sanity, this list will only include major story and side bosses, and will not cover repeated bosses that eventually become regular foes in late-game areas.
22. Mimic Tear
The Mimic Tear boss fight can be as easy or as tough as you want it to be. The beauty of this fight is that the Mimic Tear will copy whatever equipment and spells you have on you when you enter the boss fog, which means that you can trivialize it completely by going in naked and forcing it to fight you with its fists, then quickly equip your weapons and decimate it.
This is meant to be more of a cool, unique fight in Elden Ring than anything, and is easily the easiest encounter in the entire game.
21. Sir Gideon Ofnir, the All-Knowing
Gideon would be a tricky invader to fight, especially if he invaded while you were trying to navigate the open-world and dealing with other enemies at the same time. However, as a standalone boss, he’s pretty weak.
While Gideon does have a lot of spells at his disposal, by the time you actually get to his boss fight (which is at the very end of the game), you should have more than enough Vigor and HP to deal with his attacks. Unless, of course, you’re doing a level 1 run.
Gideon’s damage is pitiful, making him one of the weaker endgame bosses here.
20. God-devouring Serpent/Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy
It seems like we need to have some version of Demon’s Souls’ Stormruler in every game that FromSoft makes, and Elden Ring is no different. Rykard is more of a gimmick fight than anything, as the game deliberately gives you a new weapon in the boss arena itself to fight him with.
The Serpent-Hunter spear functions very similarly to the Stormruler in that you can utilize its weapon art to deal massive damage to the boss from a long distance. As long as you have enough FP to sustain those weapon arts, you’re good to go.
Credit where credit is due, though; Rykard’s move set is a lot more diverse and dangerous than that of Demon’s Souls’ Storm King and Dark Souls III’s Yhorm. He has a lot of combos that can absolutely destroy the player in a matter of seconds if you’re not careful, so you do still need to be cautious when dealing with him.
19. Ancestor Spirit/Regal Ancestor Spirit
The Ancestor Spirits can be encountered in Siofra and Nokron respectively, and they’re probably the most visually striking bosses of Elden Ring. They’re not particularly tough to fight as their moves are very predictable and well-telegraphed, but just like any other boss in the game, they’ll also punish you very severely if you get too greedy.
The Regal variant, in particular, mixes things up by making use of a self-heal mechanic to drag out the fight even longer. The key to winning these two fights is just patience, and not getting overly confident. Just because they’re beautiful elks doesn’t mean they’re pushovers.
18. Fia’s Champions
Another NPC-focused fight, Fia’s Champions are very dangerous when you eventually have to face them all in a group. This fight basically simulates what an invader would face when fighting a host and their summons, and it’s all about managing spacing and being aware of what each enemy is doing at all times.
While I’m not a huge fan of gank boss fights, Fia’s Champions showcase some pretty unique and varied builds that can really challenge you. It’s fun to try to predict what each NPC is going to do next, and countering that with the tools at your disposal.
17. Elemer of the Briar
Elemer of the Briar is an optional boss you can encounter at the Shaded Castle, and is essentially a powered up version of the Bell-bearing Hunter field bosses that will sometimes show up at merchant NPC locations.
That said, Elemer does have a move set that can be difficult to deal with, especially as he starts flinging his blade around, making it hard to see or predict where exactly he’s going to strike or when it’s safe to roll. The key to beating Elemer is by getting close and parrying him, or making use of guard counters to deal high damage.
Unlike the regular dragons, which are a dime a dozen in Elden Ring, the Lichdragons are a much more fearsome variant. Aside from the regular swoops that you see in the normal dragon moveset, the Lichdragons can also spew lightning at you, and force you to keep an eye on the ground lest you get struck by a bolt.
They’re more aggressive than the regular dragons, and also a lot harder to stun because of how mobile they are.
15. Grafted Scion
I know, I know. I’m breaking my own rule here because the Grafted Scion becomes a regular enemy that you can encounter in the Lands Between, but it absolutely needed to be included here because this is probably the most messed up tutorial boss in any FromSoft game ever.
Putting aside the fact that you’re thrown into the tutorial fight with no healing items whatsoever, the Grafted Scion also has a moveset that can completely trip you up. It’s hard to tell where its combos begin and where they end, and even now, with a level 150 character, I still have trouble fighting this thing.
14. Rennala, Queen of the Full Moon
On the surface, Rennala seems like she should be a really easy foe to defeat. And while that’s true of her first phase, her moves in the second phase are also designed to punish greedy behavior.
She’s easily staggered when you hit her, but she can also create space effectively by floating away and casting devastating long range spells. Get her down to half health, and she starts summoning spirits to wreak even more havoc in the arena. What should be a simple fight quickly turns into a mess of panic rolls and sprints as you try to dodge her spells as well as the other enemies that get dropped in the area.
13. Astel, Naturalborn of the Void
Astel is an optional boss in Elden Ring, and also one of the most visually striking ones you’ll encounter in this game. It usually opens up with a long range beam spell that can instantly kill you if you’re not already on the move, and it has quite a few tricky gravity spells to deal with close ranged foes too.
The most dangerous part of this fight is trying not to get caught up in Astel’s various AoE spells and letting it take the advantage. Like most other fights in the game, you want to play a little conservatively here and not get too caught up in trying to strike its head for a stun.
12. Red Wolf of Radagon
The interesting thing about the Red Wolf is that it has very little health, yet it’s still one of the main bosses that trips up most players on their first playthrough.
This is one of the most aggressive and fastest bosses you’ll encounter in the game, and while its moves are easy to read, it can be tough trying to get your dodge timing right. The second you mistime a dodge, chances are good that you’ll get hit in the back with a delayed glintblade or get completely stomped by the Red Wolf itself.
However, once you’ve mastered its moveset, this fight becomes trivial. The only question is, do you have the patience to sit through multiple quick deaths to learn its patterns?
11. Godrick the Grafted
Godrick will likely be the first demigod boss that most players face on their first playthrough, and yep, he’s a tough one. Godrick is incredibly aggressive in both phases, and is able to mix up his moves to trip you up and confuse you.
He’s got a two-hit AoE ground attacks that turns into a three-hit in the second phase, he’s got a grab attack that can one-shot most players at lower levels, and worst of all, he has a tornado projectile attack that’s pretty difficult to dodge reliably. And once you enter the second phase, Godrick becomes even more dangerous as he now has access to ranged fire attacks that will absolutely kill you if you’re not prepared to dodge.
The one good thing about this fight is that his moves are also quite well-telegraphed, and he’s easy to stun if you’re able to keep the pressure on him.
10. Commander Niall
Honestly, the hardest part of this fight is killing the two knights that Niall summons at the start. The knights themselves are tough enough as regular enemies, but when you put two of them in a small arena with Commander Niall, who’s looking to inflict you with Frostbite at every turn, things can get very overwhelming.
The first couple minutes will be a matter of trying to kite the knights away from Niall so you can deal with them safely, and once you’ve done that, this encounter becomes way more enjoyable.
Niall’s moves are easy to read, but like a lot of the other good bosses in Elden Ring, he punishes players severely for mistiming dodges or getting greedy. If you’re feeling confident, you can parry him into oblivion. If not, get ready to roll for your life.
9. Margit, the Fell Omen/Morgott, the Omen King
Margit is one of the early main story bosses in the game, and he shows up again later as Morgott, the Omen King, where you get to fight him at full strength. The first fight simply gives you a taste of his moveset, and has you dodging simple magic dagger throws and ground slams.
Once you reach Leyndell, however, Morgott stops holding back and starts throwing all sorts of ground AoE attacks at the player. Just like Godrick, he’s good at mixing up his moves to keep the player guessing, and he’s aggressive at every turn.
The only problem is that it’s easy to get overleveled by the time you reach Leyndell, which can trivialize the fight with Morgott especially if you’re using summons too, but you can bet that he puts up a hell of a fight if the playing field is even.
8. Starscourge Radahn
The hardest part of this fight is even getting to Radahn in the first place. The second you enter the arena, you’re greeted with a giant arrow flying your way, which can one-shot you if you haven’t been leveling your Vigor. And even once you get past that initial shot, you still have to make your way to Radahn while dodging the rain of arrows and summoning help along the way.
Things don’t get much easier once you actually reach Radahn either, as he moves really fast for his size and is able to mix up his melee and gravity attacks to catch you in dangerous combos. Let’s not forget his ultimate move where he flies up into the sky before re-entering the stratosphere to one-shot either you or your summons either. This guy is one of the roughest bosses to face on a first playthrough for sure.
7. Radagon of the Golden Order/Elden Beast
As far as final bosses go, I have to say this back-to-back encounter was a little disappointing, especially when you face off against the Elden Beast. The trickiest aspect of this fight is surviving the first phase with enough health and healing items to be able to finish off the Elden Beast itself.
Just like the Red Wolf, Radagon doesn’t have that much HP to start with. He also appears to move slowly and methodically, but make no mistake, he’s extremely dangerous when he catches you in a combo. Radagon’s moves have a lot of reach, and he’s able to stunlock the player in a deadly combo if you don’t manage to get out in time. He’s able to react to your attacks quickly as well, and it’s a real challenge trying to deplete his health while conserving your own healing items.
Once you do manage to defeat Radagon, though, the Elden Beast is a lot easier to handle. This cosmic dragon thing can still deal a lot of damage, but if you were able to keep a good supply of healing items after the fight with Radagon, you should be able to withstand its attacks and outlast it.
6. Godskin Apostle and Godskin Noble
If this was a ranking of the worst boss fights in Elden Ring, the Godskin duo would be somewhere near the bottom simply because this fight is basically just putting two regular enemies together in the same room to gank you. And the worst part? They resurrect in the middle of the fight.
While both bosses do share the same health bar, if you kill one, it’ll get resummoned back into the fight after a short period of time. This means that you’re pretty much spending the entire fight dodging and rolling around while waiting for both enemies to finally present you with an opening to attack. This makes it a difficult, but ultimately uninteresting, boss encounter.
5. Fire Giant
As we get towards the end of the game, Elden Ring starts to seriously ramp up the difficulty of its boss fights, and the Fire Giant is just the first of many.
The Fire Giant is a towering humanoid enemy who’s able to fling fire at you and conjure them up from the ground. Even as you enter the arena, it’s almost impossible to dodge his initial fire attack even if you’re on Torrent, showing just how dangerous he can be from a distance. If you’ve been playing a magic build and pelting your enemies from afar this entire time, that strategy isn’t going to work here.
The Fire Giant requires you to stick close at all times, while keeping a keen eye on the ground to watch his fire attack and also rolling at the right time whenever he wants to create some distance.
4. Beast Clergyman/Maliketh, the Black Blade
The first phase of this fight is fairly straightforward; the Beast Clergyman is fast, sure, but he also leaves a lot of openings for you to attack. Once you get to the second phase, however, Maliketh stops holding back.
Maliketh’s fight is so dangerous because he’s good at making the player panic roll, and then punishing them for that. Once he hits you with the black flame, your health starts ticking down slowly even as you’re moving away, and he takes that opportunity to press his advantage to stop you from healing or trying to create distance.
His moves are also a lot faster and wilder in this phase that it’s near impossible to beat him without using spirit ashes to distract him just so you can have a moment to breathe.
3. Mohg, the Omen/Mohg, Lord of Blood
You’ll first encounter Mohg, the Omen at the very bottom of the Leyndell sewers and he’s already tough enough without his full kit. But once you get to Moghwyn Palace, you’ll face Mohg, Lord of Blood in all his glory, and this is a fight that could leave you stumped for a while.
Mohg moves slowly, but his attacks inflict Bleed build-up, which can be absolutely devastating. His normal attacks alone deal a lot of damage, but once that Bleed meter fills up, you could be dead instantly if your HP isn’t high enough. Couple that with an attack that’s almost impossible to dodge, and a second phase where he starts zipping around the arena aggressively, and you’ve got one of the toughest bosses in the game.
2. Godfrey and Hoarah Loux
Godfrey and Hoarah Loux feels like the real final boss fight of Elden Ring, even more so than Radagon and the Elden Beast. This is definitely one of the more unique bosses in the game because Godfrey just moves like a fighting game character in a 3D environment, complete with terrifying grab attacks and insanely far-reaching AoE moves.
The second you see him lift his foot, you’d better get ready to roll because that ground stomp is going to hit absolutely everything in that arena. It definitely doesn’t help that the ground stomp is so delayed as well, making it tricky to tell exactly when it’s going to land.
In his second phase, he just gets even more aggressive and starts actively dashing towards the player for grab attacks (which, yes, can one-shot you), and his ground stomp also becomes a lot more ferocious. There’s very little breathing room in this fight, making it one of the toughest challenges to overcome.
1. Malenia, Blade of Miquella/Goddess of Rot
There shouldn’t be any surprise here. She’s an optional boss, but she’s also hands down the toughest boss encounter FromSoft has ever created. I’d say she was at least on par with Bloodborne’s Orphan of Kos, but there’s just one move that totally pushes her over the edge.
Malenia‘s first phase appears deceptively easy at first, as she can be stunned pretty easily and her moves are also relatively easy to read. However, her waterfowl dance move is incredibly difficult to dodge and can often end the fight once you get caught up in it. The waterfowl dance enables her to perform spinning slashes in midair, and propels her towards you over a long distance.
She does three combos in this technique, and once you get caught up in one, chances are good that you’ll get caught in the next one too. The worst part? Malenia also has lifesteal on hit, which means that she regains a bit of health whenever she lands a hit on you, even if you have a shield up.
Her second phase is even worse, as she moves a lot faster, is able to start flying around and swooping down from above, and she starts inflicting Scarlet Rot. The fight with Malenia demands perfection and luck, and is also one of the very few encounters in Elden Ring where spirit ashes can actually hurt you.
That does it for our boss ranking in Elden Ring. Do you agree with our placements here? Feel free to let us know in the comments down below.
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