The rebel Raime, after his defeat at the hands of Velstadt, came to Brume Tower in search of greater strength.
When he found it, it came not from a regal father figure like before, but from a newfound mother who gave him true purpose.1
- Extremely High Fire Resistance
- High Magic Resistance
- Medium Lightning and Dark Resistance
- Immune to poison (This also includes Toxic)
- Immune to bleed (Tested with 44 lacerating arrows)
- Note: Damage calculation does not work like non-DLC enemies, meaning you actually do less damage with pure spells than mixed (infusion, enchantment)
After he reaches 60% health, he discards the small sword and buffs the greatsword with a mix of Fire and Dark. At this stage he gains two special attacks, each accompanied by a distinct sound and visual effect;
- A very slow horizontal swing with a large reach due to the buff. When you see it, walk towards him then roll diagonally forward and to your left, through the blade. You should end up right behind him, allowing you to get in a hit or two.
- He thrusts his weapon into the ground and creates an explosion that sends out fireballs in an outward spiral. Back off then roll through the fireballs.
His attacks also become much faster and aggressive, sometimes coming as a surprise when he seems to be recovering.
He has two main sets of combos. He can choose based on your position on how far he goes into the combo, but you can tell which set of combo he'll use from the first swing:
*An overhead swipe going from his right shoulder to his left shoulder. Note that he has a very similar attack where he slashes down from his right down to his left. He will not chain that attack further. However, if the greatsword goes to his left shoulder, he'll follow up with downwards smash into the ground. When he does this, he leaves a window open to strike. He can however follow this attack by a 270 degrees right to left sweep, which he sometimes will follow up with another such sweep going from left to right. You can tell when he does this when he holds the blade for a moment ready to swing. This is a delayed attack, so don't dodge too early. The downwards smash leaves enough time to make a hit and dodge the sweeps in time, and right after his final sweep you can get another hit in.
*An overhead swipe going from his left shoulder to his right shoulder. This is an important difference to notice since that when he uses this attack he's locked into a different moveset for the combo. The second attack of the combo is the same as the first, but going into the opposite direction. What happens next is important:
-Either he does a forward trust. When this happens, there's a very safe, but brief, moment, to counter. He'll not follow up this attack, as this move ends the combo.
-He'll use a 270 degrees left to right sweep (again, left to right from his perspective). Note that this sweep has longer range. This attack too leaves a window open to make one strike. He can however combo this further into another one or two 270 degrees swipes, albeit these are a bit shorter in range. Again, after the final sweep he's open for another jab.
It's important to note that he can break off the chaining of attacks at any time. He'll usually only do this for the first few attacks when you are far out of range, but the further you go into the combo, the further he becomes random with whether or not using follow ups. He always has tell signs when he continues on.
There are four Ashen Idols just outside the boss arena. When Fume Knight gets close to them, he will be healed as if he were standing in range of the Warmth pyromancy, but much more quickly. To prevent this, destroy them with Smelter Wedges. Players who have already destroyed every Ashen Idol available while exploring the tower will be short one Smelter Wedge until after the Fume Knight is defeated, so it's recommended to leave the Ashen Idol encountered by the first bonfire at the top of Brume Tower alone. However, it's very possible to fight while keeping him away from a single remaining healing point.
It is worth noting that taking more phantoms into this fight increases the Fume Knight's resistance to damage, just as all other bosses. Consider tackling this boss alone. His focus will of course be entirely on you, but he has quite easily dodged attacks and offers plenty of opportunities to strike after the ultra-greatsword swings.
Furthermore, unlike other bosses (namely the Smelter Demon in Iron Keep), when he powers up, he does not become more resilient to attacks during the animation, thus this is a great opportunity to get several strikes in. However, this power up phase is very short, and he will most commonly end it by using his with his slow, empowered sweeping attack, which can deal a huge amount of damage to unaware players.
Acute timing with dodges is essential, as his attacks are highly damaging and will punish you heavily.
Best opportunity to strike (only applicable after he discards his smaller sword):
a) After he does his thrusting attack (he will sprint a bit and then thrust his sword towards you with one hand). Roll either side to avoid damage and then hit him once. Hit him twice and you may not have the time to avoid his side slash or his area of effect fireball attack.
b) When he does the slow fire swipe, calmly roll TOWARDS him when sword reaches the center or roll through the flaming sword when it is still on his side. Careful though, as you roll through the flaming sword, you may get hit by it after he get his sword behind him. Especially if you are using a Greatsword as most of its attacks after rolling involves your character moving and automatically do a 180 degree swipe.
c) His second special attack has two parts that can do damage. The first is an area of effect blast, roll away from him to avoid receiving damage, then roll forward to avoid the fire balls.
He is vulnerable to strike weapons. Use weapons with fast recovery, such as a Mace or Blacksmith's Hammer, and the fight will be easier.
A +5 Curved Dragon Greatsword or +5 Fume Ultra Greatsword is also quite effective against him. Just pick the right moments to attack, and be ready to dodge any incoming attacks.
Rolling is a better strategy, but if you have low Agility it is entirely possible to tank with a suitable Greatshield. This strategy becomes less and less viable in higher NG cycles.
Equipment and items:
Fully-upgraded Havel's Greatshield and Gyrm Greatshield are good choices of shield, due to their high stability and fire resistance. It might be worth infusing your Havel's Greatshield with Fire, or your Gyrm Greatshield with Dark.
Use a relatively quick, stamina-efficient weapon. Hammers are a good choice, since they deal Strike damage, have a usable R1-R1 combo, and tend to scale off of the high strength required to hold your greatshield.
Third Dragon Ring, Flame Quartz Ring, Dark Quartz Ring, Baneful Bird Ring, and Chloranthy Ring are all useful rings for this fight.
Stamina conservation is of utmost importance. High Endurance is vital. To increase stamina regeneration, wear light armor to keep your equip load low, equip Chloranthy Ring, and use Green Blossom.
It's a viable strategy to two-hand your shield for 5 extra stability, and exclusively attack with shield bashes. Both Havel's and the Gyrm Greatshield have respectable AR when fully upgraded. If you also have Baneful Bird Ring equipped this will give you an effective 90 stability. This also allows you to wear the Blossom Kite Shield on your back for even more stamina regeneration. The shield bashes deal a great deal of poise damage even without Stone Ring, so you will stagger him frequently. The downside to this approach is that shield bashes are slow and use a fair amount of stamina, so you will need to pick your openings more carefully.
Gradual health regeneration items like Elizabeth Mushroom or Lifegems can be useful in mitigating chip damage when blocking fire and dark attacks.
The basic strategy is to lock on, hug him closely on his right side, and block his attacks if you can't outright avoid them. You want to avoid the FUGS in his left hand as much as possible, but the smaller Fume Sword in his right hand deals very little stamina damage. Stand behind him during the FUGS horizontal swings.
After he completes a heavy attack or combo, get one or two hits in with your weapon of choice if you have the stamina. As a rule of thumb, if the combo finishes with a FUGS horizontal swing and you didn't need to block it, you have time for two Hammer R1s. Otherwise, you have time for only one.
During the second phase, his attacks will drain more stamina and deal significant chip damage, but they are slow enough to allow two hammer swings or one swig of Estus afterwards.
You can block the slow fire swipe, but you don't have to. Just walk behind him to your right, and you should avoid it without having to block it. There will even be time to get a hit or two in afterwards. The closer you are, the easier this becomes. If you react quickly, you can simply walk underneath it to the left at the beginning of the swipe.
Strafing to the left with your shield up will often avoid his sprinting thrust attack. Worst case you end up blocking it, which is not that bad.
When you see the explosion attack, roll backwards twice to clear the initial explosion, keep walking backwards to allow the fireballs to spread out, then step between the fireballs (block if you can't find an opening). There is enough time to drink Estus or use an item after you're clear of the fireballs.
It is especially important to conserve stamina in the second stage. His multi-hit combos in the second stage can take out a huge amount of your stamina. Strafing to your left usually allows you to only block 1 or 2 hits out of 3, so with careful stamina management you shouldn't be guard broken.
Be sure to bring a lot of cast-regenerating items with you. It is a long fight. Since he has high defenses against basically every sort of magic, you'll need heavy hitting spells whatever the type is. Preferably use either sorceries and/or hexes (faith and pyromancy builds will have an even harder time against him). Never run out of stamina, as you'll need to roll a lot. In general, you either want a high adaptability for more iFrames, a shield with high stability that soaks up high percentages of physical, fire and dark damage or preferably both. Don't bother too much with resistances in armor and/or resistance rings. If he hits you, chances are you'll not survive it no matter what you are wearing. Instead, clutch rings, Chloranthy Ring and Dragon Ring are your best friends. Especially in NG+ and beyond.
-In the first phase, bait out his combos while staying out of range of them. If you see him moving his ultra greatsword (has quite a long wind up) and you are out of range, cast one and only one spell. Preferably use crystal soul spears, soul spears, and great heavy soul arrows. Don't use soul geyser since its casting speed is too slow,. Always wait for him to use his ultra greatsword while staying out of range, and you'll never get hit if you dodge roll his longsword attacks. I was able to fire off 4 crystal soul spears, 8 soul spears and 4-6 great heavy soul arrows before he buffed to second stage.
-The second stage is tricky, and I honestly prefer using melee with my moonlight greatsword. You can however still use magic if you have the patience. Never attack between his normal combos; I've seen him going from a normal 3 hit combo standing still for 1 or 2 seconds before suddenly adding 2 horizontal attacks to it. Casting inbetween means death. Rather, wait for him to use his slow horizontal sweep. Roll through it and cast. Often when he finishes that particular attack, he jumps back and does a running thrust at you. If you have the stamina, dodge and cast right away again. If he doesn't jump back, prepare to dodge. His area of effect attack also leaves room for a cast, after a successful roll through the fireballs. Never ever get greedy and do only one cast or hit at a time. Even if you pull off multiple hits, chances are you'll run out of stamina which means death when he combos.
Magic (Dark Orb)
Dark Orb is the most efficient spell for hex users due to it's quick casting time and moderate damage. This spell is also easily available and can be obtained 3 times in a single playthrough. Although fighting the boss alone will grant more damage per spell it is recommended that the caster summons or gets summoned as to offer the boss an alternative target so the caster can use more Dark Orbs. One summon seems to be the better option as three would severely affect the damage output. Once in the fight, beware of casting too close to the boss as he may target the caster (< needs further testing). Circle him like any other ranged strategy and move/dodge backwards when being attacked. Cast Dark Orb whenever possible while watching stamina. An upgraded shield is also recommended but not necessary.
While locked on, continuously circle diagonally back and right, dodging in that direction when needed. During his first form, attack after he does his 2 diagonal swings followed by either a stab or a sweep with his large blade. With low enough equipment load you can simply walk backwards from the third attack and cast while he is recovering.
In his second form, attack when he does either an overhead slash into the ground, or when he does the slow fire sweep (similar to the first form, you only need to dodge backwards once to put yourself out of range, then attack while he is recovering). His fire sweep is also a good time to use any recovery items.
- Stats collected by FromSoft reveal him as the hardest boss in the game, sporting a 93% failure rate.
- As with all of the Crown of the Iron King bosses, when his HP falls to approximately 30%, he will automatically stagger for a brief moment.
- If you wear Velstadt's Helm, he will immediately buff his Fume Ultra Greatsword.
- This applies only to the host player. Summoned phantoms wearing Velstadt's Helm will not cause him to immediately buff.
- Furthermore, if you attack him long enough with spell casts while he's raising out of the ground, he'll prioritize attacking first instead of immediately buffing. If however left untouched for a very brief period, he'll take the moment to buff.
- The Crown of the Old Iron King can be found in a small room after the boss has been defeated.
- Summoning NPCs for this battle is not recommended as both of them have poor damage output and rarely dodge, although Steelheart Ellie can last longer against the boss than Carhillion of the Fold.
- If he is within striking distance of a healing player, he often seems to instant-aggro to that player with a jumping or charging attack. This seems to happen most when he is powered up.
- Redeye Ring does not seem to affect aggro.
- Enchanted weapons such as fire, magic, and lightning, etc. will deal less damage than the non-enchanted +10 weapons.
- As is the case with all bosses, should the player die shortly after or during the Fume Knight's death animation, the boss fight will be considered a failure and the player will need to try to defeat the Fume Knight again.
- He may not buff his greatsword once reaching 60% health, three times in a row he only did so past 30% (PS3 SotFS edition, might be a bug of sorts? - Also seen it happen on the 360 version of SotFS - also confirmed on PS4 SotFS - Also confirmed on PC vanilla DS2, seems to be caused by dealing enough damage to him that his heal goes from ~61% to 50% thus skipping his buff - The overhead UGS smash which he often uses to punish item usage during Phase 1 buffs his UGS with a fiery effect, which cancels his second phase until the effect wears off as documented here.)
- The fireballs from his special attack can be "parried" by a shield that can parry spells.