The Abyss Watchers are a legion of troops that all wear a distinctive armor consisting of leather over chain mail, a long cloak, and a distinctive, pointed helm. They are known for combating and ridding the world of the Abyss, and whatever comes from it; and are believed to serve in the name of Artorias the Abysswalker, who was sworn to the same duty.
All of them use a greatsword and carved dagger. The dagger is not primarily used for offense, or even parrying, but as a hook for the Watchers to utilize their wild, unpredictable fighting style.
By the time the Ashen One encounters the Legion, they are mercilessly fighting one another, seemingly because some of the remaining Watchers have gone mad from exposure to the Abyss, hence their glowing red eyes.
Found at the end of Farron Keep, from the Farron Keep Perimeter bonfire (which is near two Darkwraiths fighting multiple Ghrus). From there is a stone path (or alternatively a side path along the right exit of where the bonfire is) where the Ashen One will encounter closed chamber doors were the fighting of the Watchers can be heard.
The Abyss Watchers were the main component of the Undead Legion of Farron, a special fighting force formed to combat the threat of the Abyss. Taking inspiration from the Wolf Knight (Sir Artorias, the Abyss Walker), the Abyss Watchers themselves sought to utilize the techniques of Artorias, and partook of wolf blood to do so. Now equipped with the strength of Artorias, they became intensely strong and agile, fighting in a coordinated and sporadic pack akin to wolves.
Though the Legion was not inherently evil or overtly violent, at the slightest threat of the Abyss the Watchers would go so far as to decimate an entire territory. Their distinct outfits, topped off with a tall pointed helm, became an ill omen for any who saw them. Their wolf-blood fighting style was enhanced by the revolutionary use of an ultra greatsword modeled after Artorias' sword along with a carved dagger, utilizing the dagger as support for them to develop their own unique, highly agile fighting techniques that were even more unpredictable and vicious than their predecessor. As such, they disdained the use of shields and preferred a constant offense.
Their wolf blood did more than enhance their bodies, but their very essence, for all those who partook in it were linked to the soul of Artorias himself. As such, instead of each body hosting distinct souls, all that partook the wolf blood share the one soul distributed among them.
Along with the actual Abyss Watchers, the complete Undead Legion consisted of two other levels. To assist them, the Abyss Watchers recruited acolytes, who provided support via miracles and sorceries. At some point, they made a pact of uncertain terms with one of the Crystal Sages of the kingdom of Lothric, who agreed to come to their headquarters in Farron and train their acolytes in sorcerous arts. Due to the Legion's emphasis of speed over physical power, they asked the skilled sorcerer to develop unique variations of existing sorceries for the acolytes to use. Some of them were made by a scholar named Heysel, the daughter of the head acolyte, and refined even further than that.
Perhaps the most telling of their fall were the number of foot soldiers tasked with the covert disposal of corrupted members, as the Abyss would slowly alter them, so the "Followers" as they were called would be sent to execute them before they were transformed into creatures. Their primary technique was to surround the target, burning and stabbing them, and finishing them with honor by throwing a spear to kill them.
Beneath their home in Farron Keep, is the Catacombs of Carthus, which contain a chalice holding High Lord Wolnir, who fell to the Abyss long ago. Along with the cindered Smouldering Lake, nearby is the Cathedral of the Deep, resting place of Aldrich, Devourer of Gods.
With nothing to live for after the Abyss Watchers linked the flame, the Followers went hollow, roaming the land and eventually disappearing into the Painted World of Ariandel. Since there were none to execute the corrupt, the acolytes were slowly devolved by the Abyss, and Farron was consumed in a rotting bog. Once the Abyss Watchers had awakened, their home was corrupt and their mission unsuccessful. The Watchers in the keep now fight against themselves; endlessly slaying their brethren corrupted by the Abyss.
- Black Hand Gotthard: His summon sign will appear before the stairs leading up to the boss arena.
- Londor Pale Shade: If the player has done Yoel of Londor's questline and met Yuria of Londor, the Londor Pale Shade can be summoned for the fight. His summon sign can be found near the Farron Keep Perimeter bonfire.
- Sirris of the Sunless Realms: If the player has given the Dreamchaser's Ashes to the Shrine Handmaid and then talked to Sirris afterward, she can be summoned for this fight. Her sign will be located to the left of the door leading into the boss arena.
- Yellowfinger Heysel: If the player has defeated Heysel when she invades the player either in Crucifixion Woods or Farron Keep, and then encountered Rosaria, Mother of Rebirth at the Cathedral of the Deep and deepened devotion to her covenant, Heysel can be summoned for this fight. Her sign can be found between the Keep Ruins bonfire and the door leading to the mausoleum, next to the ruined tower covered in Rotten Slugs.
Soul of the Blood of the Wolf
Cinders of a Lord
The fight consists of the player fighting a lone Abyss Watcher, who is present during the entire battle. More Abyss Watchers will awaken to join the battle as it progresses. These Watchers are much more fragile than the main Watcher, but they can still deal a considerable amount of damage, especially when multiple attack at once.
Every other Watcher that awakens, starting from the second, will be red-eyed and hostile toward other Watchers. They can directly attack the player or each other, but they will mostly focus on the other watchers. These Watchers can be used to the player's advantage, as they assist in dealing damage and taking aggro. As such, it may be a good idea to switch to a more defensive playstyle while the player waits for these Watchers to even out the odds.
The main Watcher, although carrying a greatsword, is extremely fast and dexterous. He is constantly jumping around and evading the players swings by doing so. He will also try to take an advantage by swinging his greatsword around the floor of the arena. Never let your guard down, each and every attack can take you by surprise.
Depleting the main Watcher's HP will trigger a cutscene, which shows the main Watcher absorbing power from the corpses around the arena. After this, the second phase of the battle commences.
At this point, the Watcher's sword will ignite, causing it to deal additional Fire damage and leaving trails in the floor that erupt into large pillars of flame. The Watcher himself will also take on an Embered appearance, revealing his true form as one of the Lords of Cinder.
The other Watchers no longer rise during the second phase, but the main Watcher is considerably more aggressive and powerful. The fight plays out in a similar fashion, but most of the Watcher's greatsword attacks are altered in some way. Killing the Watcher at this point will end the fight, but dying will reset it entirely, requiring the player to beat the first phase again.
- Can be parried, riposted and backstabbed in both phases of the encounter.
- The Watchers wake up based on a timer. Damage dealt has no effect on how many of them are active.
- All Watchers are instantly killed when the first phase of the fight is finished.
- The Abyss-corrupted (red-eyed) Watchers are capable of finishing off the main Watcher. This has no direct effect on gameplay, however.
- If an enemy followed the player up to the fog door, it may attract the corrupted Watcher's attention and he will keep trying to attack it for the rest of the first phase, rendering him unable to help against the others.
- The Watchers that resurrect in the first phase of the fight are actually the same two Watchers, they will resurrect on the spot where they were killed.
- After defeating the Watchers, the Undead Legion Set will become available for purchase with the Shrine Handmaid, and the Hornet Ring will be found outside the Dark Firelink Shrine resting upon a grave next to a Black Knight.
- The Wolf Knight Set also becomes available from the Shrine Handmaid in the Untended Graves following their defeat.
- Hawkwood the Deserter is a former member of the Watchers, and is speculated that he eventually deserted the Legion in part because of the mockery he received for his shield.
- From the description of their soul and the ability to create the Wolf Knight's Greatsword, it seems that the massive soul of the Undead Legion is a reincarnation of Artorias himself, as many souls have been known to eventually reincarnate.
- The design of the Abyss Watchers appears to be based on the Keeper of the Old Lords from Bloodborne.