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Dark Souls Wiki

The Dragonrider is a boss in Dark Souls II.


Scholar of the First Sin[]


The Dragonrider is clad in heavy red or black armor. He is large and physically imposing.


The Dragonriders used to serve in King Vendrick's royal guard long ago. These riders mounted wyverns and caused chaos on the battlefield due to their unparalleled strength.[1] The rank of Dragonrider was reserved for honorable warriors who helped found Drangleic. Together with the King, they crushed the land's former inhabitants and erected a magnificent kingdom upon their graves.[2]

Those wishing to join the ranks of the Dragonriders were forced to undergo intense and dangerous training. Only those who passed the training were allowed in the order, those who failed would be ripped apart by the very mounts they tried to command.


Heide's Tower of Flame[]

The Dragonrider possesses a highly predictable attack pattern, consisting of mostly mid-ranged attacks, with the biggest threat being falling off the edge of the circular arena, a threat essentially eliminated if the guarded levers found earlier in the level are pulled. Dodging the attacks give players ample time to counter-attack. Blocking may prove useful, although good timing allows rolling through its slow attacks. Circling around it is also highly effective.

Masterless Glencour can also be summoned from a sign just to the right of the fog gate. He is a powerful tank wielding a Zweihander and an Iron Parma, and is capable of parrying the Dragonrider. In Scholar of the First Sin, Devotee Scarlett can be found past the three Old Knights near the second lever, in the direction of the Old Dragonslayer.

On the stone bridge after the third Old Knight, there is a spot where it is possible to shoot the Dragonrider from outside the arena. After taking a certain amount of damage, it will raise its shield, preventing any further damage. The player can then enter the arena to fight the Dragonrider, who should now be at very low HP.

It is also possible to exploit the AI by standing close to the Dragonrider's back. This causes it to attack as if the player was standing in front of it, thus allowing easy damage to be dealt.

The Dragonrider will be instantly killed if it falls off the arena. This can be used to the player's advantage, if they can time their dodge correctly. Without raising the arena rings from the water, one can simply wait by the fog door. By rolling at the right time, the Dragonrider will swing, and fall into the water, allowing for a quick victory, although it can be risky if not practiced.

Drangleic Castle[]

Two Dragonriders are fought at once in this encounter. The first Dragonrider will be engaging the player in melee combat while the second fires at the player from above with a greatbow. Once the first Dragonrider is down to roughly half health, the second one will come down. It is a good idea to quickly eliminate one of them to minimize the amount of time spent fighting two-on-one. The second Dragonrider has much less Health than the first, and may prove easier to dispatch. Once one is defeated, the fight becomes very similar to the original fight in Heide's Tower of Flame, without the risk of falling off the stage.

If the archer proves to be too much of a nuisance, players can take it down with ranged attacks of their own. Care should be taken if this is done as being hit by the first Dragonrider can be fatal.

Alternatively, one can wait by the pillar where the second Dragonrider is perched. The Dragonrider on the floor will attack the pillar, breaking it and causing the second Dragonrider to fall down earlier. If this happens; the second Dragonrider won't change weapons, preferring to fire the bow until it is defeated.

In Scholar of the First Sin, the summon sign for Pilgrim Bellclaire is available just outside the entrance to the boss arena.


Throughout the boss fight, the attack combos get longer as the Dragonrider's health decreases. There are three different phases (start, middle, and near-end of fight) to the attack patterns based on its health, and the new attacks simply combo after the previous ones. Most of the new attacks are simply extra horizontal swings with a few exceptions. Like most enemies, the combos are only performed if the player is still in range of the attacks.

  1. Lines up the halberd and does a straight thrust.
    • Phase 2: Adds a horizontal slash.
  2. Raises the halberd behind itself and does two horizontal strikes.
    • Phase 3: Finishes with a downward smash.
  3. Raises its halberd and does a straight downward slash.
    • Phase 2: Adds an upward, diagonal slash.
  4. Raises its halberd and does a single, twirling swipe with a wider range to its left.
    • Phase 2: Adds another horizontal slash.
  5. Performs a shield bash that breaks guard. Range is shorter than the other attacks and has a long recovery time. Staying close to the Dragonrider while blocking can be done to bait out this move.

The Dragonrider has two main defensive moves: One is to sprint a short distance to get some space between itself and the player; the other is to simply raise its shield for a short period of time. Blocking is often done after a dash.


Heide's Tower of Flame

Physical Defenses
Physical Defense Strike Defense Slash Defense Thrust Defense
??? ??? ??? ???
Elemental Defenses
Magic Defense Fire Defense Lightning Defense Dark Defense
??? ??? ??? ???
Poison Resist Bleed Resist Can be Backstabbed Can be Parried
??? ??? No Yes

These stats have been estimated through various formulae, and as such, may not be precise.

Drangleic Castle

Physical Defenses
Physical Defense Strike Defense Slash Defense Thrust Defense
??? See Notes 667 603
Elemental Defenses
Magic Defense Fire Defense Lightning Defense Dark Defense
306 293 246 306
Poison Resist Bleed Resist Can be Backstabbed Can be Parried
??? ??? No Yes

These stats have been estimated through various formulae, and as such, may not be precise.


Item Boss Soul.png
Dragonrider Soul
Drop Rate Guaranteed


  • The first Dragonrider can be respawned by using a Bonfire Ascetic on the Heide's Ruin bonfire.
  • The Dragonrider pair can be respawned by using a Bonfire Ascetic on the Forgotten Chamber bonfire.
  • There is a glitch that may occur when trying to make the boss fall off the arena, where the AI won't trigger after the player dodges, rendering the fight one-sided.
  • The Dragonrider can be parried, but can not be riposted.
  • The black Dragonrider Set can be bought from Magerold of Lanafir after the first bonfire in the Iron Keep reaches intensity two (on some occasions, it needs to be on intensity three). The Dragonrider's weapons and shield can be obtained from Straid through trading Dragonrider Souls.
  • Due to its low health, the Dragonrider is susceptible to poison.
  • Oddly enough, the Dragonriders (Drangleic Castle), compared to a player having 0 Strike Defense, receive about 9.42% more damage from strike weapons.
  • Wearing the full Tseldora Set and the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring (Dark Souls II) during the battle in Drangleic Castle yields an upwards of 80,000 souls.
  • The Dragonrider at Heide's Tower of Flame can be seen but not killed before entering the boss fight. All damage done before entering the fight will be dealt all at once upon entering the fog door up to a limit of one health remaining.




Dark Souls II Soundtrack OST - The Dragonrider


  1. Dragonrider Soul description.
  2. Dragonrider Greatshield description.
Aava, the King's PetAfflicted Graverobber, Ancient Soldier Varg, and Cerah the Old Explorer
Aldia, Scholar of the First SinAncient DragonBelfry Gargoyles
Burnt Ivory KingCovetous DemonDarklurkerDemon of SongDragonrider
Elana, the Squalid QueenExecutioner's ChariotFlexile SentryFume Knight
Giant LordGuardian DragonLooking Glass KnightLost Sinner
Lud, the King's Pet & Zallen, the King's PetMytha, the Baneful QueenNashandra
Old DragonslayerOld Iron KingProwling Magus and Congregation
Royal Rat AuthorityRoyal Rat VanguardRuin SentinelsScorpioness NajkaSinh, the Slumbering Dragon
Sir AlonneSkeleton LordsSmelter Demon
Smelter Demon (Iron Passage)The Duke's Dear FrejaThe Last Giant
The PursuerThe RottenThrone Watcher and Defender
Velstadt, the Royal AegisVendrick