Ghostflame Dragon Boss Guide – Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree

Be wary of this foe, as it will begin curled up, looking like a rock or rotting wood.

You didn’t think that just because you left the lands between, you also escaped the presence of dragons, did you? This skeletal Ghostflame Dragon, guarding the new Great Katana, is a mix of the dragon fights you’re used to, with some additional mechanics thrown in to throw players off.

  • Like most dragons, being near and locked on to the head while on foot is usually ideal, and lets you get good damage and staggers in. Jump attacks and weapons with overhead swings are ideal for this.
  • The Dragon’s deadly Ghostflame Stomps are harder to avoid than most stomps, and so you should move away from the side of the dragon’s raised foot as soon as you see it. In general, the Dragon’s ghostflame attacks are its deadliest.
  • If you have a method that works to slay dragons from the base game, it will likely work here.
  • Use Torrent to avoid the dragon’s ghostflame attacks.

You’ve almost certainly faced at least a few dragons before, in the base game of Elden Ring. And, luckily for you, this first dragon fight is mostly a return to that form of fighting, with a few extras thrown in. For those that need a refresher, though: there are really two ways to attack dragons in melee. The first is by attacking its legs, which opens you up for stomp attacks and tail swipes. The second is by attacking its head, putting you in a better position to dodge stomps, but opening up bite attacks.

For most players, it is better to lock-on and target the Dragon’s head, unless you are using a weapon with particularly low reach (like daggers or certain swords). In that case, it can be preferable to attack the legs. It is worth noting that the Ghostflame Dragon in particular has a very difficult stomp attack and underbelly attack, though, so if you opt to go for its legs, you’ll need to be prepared to move quickly. Comparatively, the head should make those moves easier to avoid, and give you a better chance at staggering the Dragon for crits.

ghostflame dragon crit 1

Now, for the actual fight, there is a flow to it. If you are close to the Dragon, wait to dodge an attack, and the jump or overhead slash at the dragon’s head. Many moves will bring the Dragon’s head low enough to attack regularly or with charged heavy attacks, too.

If the Dragon flies away, or you are fighting at range, be ready for it to either fire a Ghostflame Breath or Spray, or to do one of its charging moves. If it fires Ghostflame, hop on Torrent quickly and then run away, moving back in as soon as you can to land a hit. If it charges as you, though, time its attacks to dodge them, usually rolling forward while locked on to the Dragon’s head, which you can attack as soon as the attack is over.

ghostflame dragon charging stomp

The only other moves you need to worry about are the Hover and Smash attack, which you can simply dodge when the dragon descends after two wing flaps, and the Ghostflame Stomp and Ghostflame Release that trigger when you are very close or under the dragon. When it does either of these, begin moving away immediately. In the case of the stomp, as soon as you see the leg rise, move away, then dodge when it comes down; this should help you avoid the Ghostflame. For the release, simply running or using Torrent to retreat from the Dragon for a moment should be enough.

Later versions of this Dragon after the first in Gravesite Plain each have extra enemies in the arena. In Scadu Altus, near the Moorth Ruins, the Dragon is being attacked by a huge group of Messmer Soldiers, who will fight you just as well. Meanwhile, in the Cerulean Coast, the dragon there will occasionally summon Skeletal Warriors, who will fight alongside it and can be damaged by it.

With enough jump attacks, critical hits, or leg stabs, you ought to be able to make quick work of the Ghostflame Dragon. When he is dead, make sure you grab the item that was near him when he awoke: the Great Katana.

  • Ghostflame Stomp: The Dragon leans back and then stomps down, and ghostflame erupts from where its foot lands. To dodge this, start moving away from the side that the raise foot is on immediately, then dodge to avoid the stomp. By moving long before the stomp, you should be able to avoid the ghostflame the stomp creates. Alternatively, rolling right into the foot can allow you to avoid both it and the flame with a single roll, but the timing is much harder.
  • Charging Wingswipes: The dragon, from a distance, will charge toward you, smashing its wings into the ground twice, and then a third time after a short delay. The second and third wingswipes could hit you, so you should roll toward the Dragon’s head (while locked on) to avoid both.
  • Charging Headbutt: The dragon will charge at you, taking two steps before lowering its head and then flipping it up quickly for an attack. Roll when the head swings up.
  • Bite: The dragon will take a swipe with its head to bite you. Rolling any direction as its head swings toward you should keep you alive.
  • Hover and Smash: The dragon will fly up in the air, flap its wings once, and then crash back onto the ground. When it flies into the air, lock on to the head and roll backwards as it descends to avoid the attack and put yourself right next to its head for damage.
  • Ghostflame Spray: The dragon will move its head from side to side and spray ghostflame in front of it. To avoid this, get on Torrent and move away, then charge in as the flame dies down for a solid hit.
  • Ghostflame Breath: The dragon, froma distance, will breath ghostflame toward you. This attack moves slower than Torrent, so you can hop on your horse and ride to either side to avoid it. When he finishes, or if you get very close, you can get a strike in at the dragon’s head.
  • Ghostflame Release: After a roar, the dragon will release Ghostflame from its bony insides, which will spread along the ground around it. When you hear the dragon roar and seeing it arching its back and neck, get on Torrent or run away.

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Graves is an avid writer, web designer, and gamer, with more ideas than he could hope to achieve in a lifetime. But, armed with a mug of coffee and an overactive imagination, he'll try. When he isn't working on a creative project, he is painting miniatures, reading cheesy sci-fi novels, or making music.

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