How to Beat the Black Blade Kindred (Forbidden Lands) – Elden Ring

Found guarding the steps that lead to the Grand Lift of Rold, this challenging foe is one of two Black Blade Kindreds in Elden Ring — the other one guards the Bestial Sanctum in Dragonbarrow. Both are seriously difficult fights, but fortunately, both can be cheesed. In fact, the cheese for this particular Black Blade Kindred is actually fairly easy to pull off, provided you’re willing to spend some runes and upgrade materials. Read on to see how it’s done!

This strategy includes some projectiles and a specific Spirit Ash — if you don’t have something that’s mentioned below, click on the item and you’ll be able to see where and how to acquire it.

It’s really not fair that this guy is so tall (and can two-shot builds that have 2000 HP), so we aren’t going to fight fair either. If you used our Lichdragon Fortissax guide, you’ve already upgraded Latenna, but otherwise, that’s going to be your first step — go to Roderika in Roundtable Hold and upgrade Latenna the Albinauric as much as possible. If you lack Ghost Glovewort, don’t forget about the Ghost-Glovewort Pickers Bell Bearings [1] and [2], which let you buy infinite gloveworts. Don’t be shy about using those Golden Runes in your inventory if you need money to buy glovewort or pay for upgrades!

Next, if you aren’t playing a ranged build, make sure you have a decent number of throwable projectiles in your inventory. Anything is fine — it doesn’t have to do a lot of damage, so you can craft Bone Darts or something similar. Pots can also be helpful, but you’ll definitely need at least 20-30 longer-ranged throwables like the Bone Darts if you don’t have a long-range attack as part of your regular build.

Properly prepared, you can head south from the Grand Lift of Rold site of grace, towards the stairs. If you don’t have this site of grace, you should get it — see walkthrough for details — as it makes pulling this strategy off much easier. At the top of the stairs, go left, and make your way onto the highest ledge that runs parallel to the stairs. Get to the middle of the ledge (relative to the stairs) and then summon Latenna.

With that done, go back the way you came and down the stairs to trigger the spawn of the boss. Once you see the boss’s health bar, quickly go back up the stairs and make your way to the opposite ledge, on the other side of the stairs from Latenna.

Now all you need to do is juggle the boss aggro with Latenna, so that she doesn’t die to the boss’s weak — but consistent — ranged attacks. To do this, use your Bone Darts or other projectiles on the boss every time the boss turns to face Latenna. Once he’s facing you, you can just block or dodge his ranged attacks while Latenna dumps arrows into his butt — often, he doesn’t even bother to attack you. When he turns towards her, start throwing stuff at him again!

black blade kindred cheese gif elden ring
This is basically all you have to do

If he ends up close enough, you can use Fire Pots or something similar, which will speed up the fight considerably. Naturally, characters with effective ranged attacks can just use them from the ledge the entire fight.

If for some reason the boss makes his way up onto the ledge, or goes around a corner and doesn’t come back, you can just quit to the main menu and try again — as long as you’re quick getting onto your ledge, the boss should behave and remain in the position visible in the above GIF.

It’s worth noting that if you get lucky and Latenna spawns far enough back from the edge of the ledge, she’ll be able to free-fire on the boss without being hit by his ranged attack. If this happens, you can just take a break, get a snack, call your mom, etc.

black blade kindred cheese good luck elden ring
A lot of Latenna’s arrows might hit the ledge if she spawns far back, but she’s got a magic bottomless quiver (and she’s safe here!)

This is included for masochists who choose to fight this boss fairly, and therefore need to know the boss’s moveset. Interestingly, it appears to be the exact same moveset as the Valiant Gargoyle (specifically, the one that also wields a twinblade and an axe). The only difference is that the Black Blade Kindred, when charging up his attacks with a roar, also adds a damage-over-time black flame effect.

  • Swipe – The gargoyle hops into the air just a bit (closing the gap if his target isn’t in range), and swings its weapon horizontally from (your) right to left.
  • Leaping Plunge – The gargoyle leaps towards his target and stabs with his weapon.
  • Ground Slam – The gargoyle roars and raises his twinblades high, then slams them into the ground. After a very brief delay, the ground around where his weapon struck quakes, doing damage to anything standing in the AOE.
  • Stomp – The gargoyle stamps his front foot — often chained into Sweep + Slam.
  • Sweep + Slam- The boss rings his weapon around his back and drags it on the ground before sweeping it upwards. He then quickly brings his weapon around again for a high-to-low slam attack. There’s a long delay between the stamp and the sweep, and then the final attack comes quickly, so this one can be tough to avoid.
  • Stomp + Slash – The gargoyle stamps his front foot, then quickly slashes with his weapon horizontally.
  • Slam + Sweep – The gargoyle raises his weapon high and quickly slams it down, then dashes away and starts dragging his weapon, then sweeping it upwards diagonally
  • Double Slam – The gargoyle slams his weapon high-to-low two times.
  • Sound Wave – The gargoyle roars, and a sonic projectile shoots rapidly towards his target.
  • Thrust + Spin – The gargoyle thrusts its twinblades towards its target, then spins twice, sweeping horizontally with its weapon — sometimes chained into the Leaping Plunge.
  • Slash + Stab – The gargoyle slashes diagonally (this can come from either side) and then stabs with the closer part of the weapon — sometimes chained into the Leaping Plunge.
  • Leaping Whirlwind – The gargoyle turns 360° and starts spinning his weapon in front of him. If you’re close to the boss, it will do a large, sweeping horizontal attack to end this move. If you’re far away, he leaps into the air and plunges towards you, doing a spinning attack as he lands. If you’re below him on the staircase and he lands in front of you, this plunging version seems to miss every time.
  • Whirlwind Sweep – The boss puts his weapon behind him, spinning it, then slashes horizontally after a brief delay.

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Unabashed FromSoftware fanboy still learning to take his time with games (and everything else, really). The time he doesn't spend on games is spent on music, books, or occasionally going outside.

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