Slave Knight Gael is considered one of the hardest, if not the hardest, bosses in all of the Dark Souls series. This enflamed dude will enrage you a lot and surely be that boss that will make you rage and quit.
He is a tough nut to crack, and you must ensure that you are at the peak of your game to subjugate him. So let us find out how you can beat Slave Knight Gael.
To defeat Slave Knight Gael in Dark Souls 3, you NEED to know all of his moves. This boss is a one-shot king and won’t give you much time to learn anything; hence slowly getting to know each move he pulls off will lead you to success.
It’s all about opponent knowledge and the right reflex to dodge any incoming attack.
Introduction to Slave Knight Gael
Slave Knight Gael is the final boss of Dark Souls 3 found and fought in The Ringed City DLC however it is still an optional boss. The boss fight starts out rather simple but becomes increasingly complex and difficult as his health starts to dwindle.
Some important things to consider when fighting him:
- He is not Parribale.
- No NPC summons are available for this fight. You can summon other players though.
- He is weak to Strike damage, Frostbite, and Poison/Toxic. And during the 2nd and 3rd phases, he is weak to Hollowslayer Greatsword.
- He is resistant to Slash damage, Bleed, and Dark in the 2nd/3rd phase.
- Most of Gael’s attacks can be disrupted by staggering him. Staggering him during his first phase is comparatively easier than during his second or third phase.
How to Beat Slave Knight Gael?
We will go over some strategies to beat Slave Knight Gael for all kinds of players. Read up and apply whichever suits your style.
The Basic Strategy
The following strategy is for any kind of player. It will teach you how this boss functions in its 3 phases, what attacks you should look out for, and what openings you should move in and strike.
Gael is vulnerable to stagger, and heavier weapons can easily cause it. At the beginning of the fight, Gael may jump into the air with a pink aura around him and fly toward you. Dodging this attack is crucial, as it can deal massive damage if it connects.
Gael’s attacks may appear faster than they actually are due to his quick movements, but his feet move faster than his arms, resulting in seemingly erratic timing.
The ideal time to strike is when he finishes his combos with a leaping attack, allowing you to land a couple of hits. Be cautious, though, as some leaps are longer than others, so timing your dodge is essential to avoid taking significant damage.
When Gael performs his plunging stab without any combo, he remains in the air for a longer period. Wait until the last moment to dodge, and then launch a counter-attack. However, if he initiates the plunging stab after an attack, it typically comes down faster.
Gael’s lunging stab causes more damage if it connects, but you can still get 1-2 hits in with a heavy weapon if you dodge correctly. Be mindful of your weapon’s range and your distance from Gael when attempting to execute a successful dodge attack.
In this phase, Gael’s attacks are accompanied by his cloak, which has a slightly longer range than his blade. Additionally, most of his attacks come in pairs, so it’s unwise to attack him immediately after his first attack.
When Gael uses Way of White Corona, it initially spreads out and won’t hit you if you’re at a mid-distance. However, keep in mind that it will eventually return to him. To avoid it, it’s best to position yourself behind his initial casting location. A good tactic is to roll through the initial cast of the miracle, attack him once, dodge his follow-up, and move around behind him.
Gael’s cloak typically acts as an extension of his blade, except during his forward stab, where it comes slightly after. His vertical smashes and thrusts have poor horizontal tracking, so you can easily run or walk to avoid them when standing close to the boss.
In this phase, Gael has a similar attack to his first phase, where he will fly into the air and rocket towards you, but you won’t be impaled. Instead, there will be a small explosion from his cape. Although the dodge timing is delicate, it offers an opportunity to land a free hit.
Horizontal swings can be tricky to dodge. When close to Gael, roll towards the attack. If there’s little room between you and him, it’s safest to roll away and wait until he finishes two slashes, which leaves him open to a highly punishable thrust.
When Gael teleports to you, he is preparing for a spinning attack, which can be challenging to roll out of since you must dodge his blade and cloak. A simple way to evade this attack is to dash away from his position, and he will spin anyway.
Gael will launch soul-like projectiles in this phase, but don’t worry! Just keep evading his attacks and you’ll be fine. Watch out for lightning markers on the ground – the souls cause these as they make their way into the ground.
If you get hit by lightning, it will deal heavy damage and leave you open to Gael’s assault. To avoid this, run in the opposite direction as Gael pauses and releases the souls.
Gael’s mid-air rocket attack now has two follow-up attacks, so wait for the third one before countering. If you fail to dodge the initial strike and block instead, you might get your guard broken and die from the second and third attacks. The second attack also releases skulls that cause lightning, so don’t stick around after countering the third attack.
Stay close to mid-range and watch for Gael’s three-attack combos. Thrust openings are still the best, but you can also take advantage of his jump smash attack without homing skulls. He’ll run at you and slam the sword down, then do an air spin follow-up with a sword slam. This attack is easy to counter and avoid, so bait it as much as you can.
There’s a variant of this attack where he won’t do a running slam, but a straight-up slam. He’ll delay the slam to shoot you with the crossbow, then come smashing down, and THEN go for a third quick Abyss Watchers air slam. You can safely counter this final attack.
Although staying in the arena-like part of the map with the ruins is a good idea, don’t forget that the map is massive. If one area becomes too dangerous with lightning, relocate to a safer spot. Gael may also teleport behind you, so be ready for that.
Melee and Faith Builds – Strategy
Avoid using Dark damage/Dark weapons/Dark blade against this boss. Instead, use Tears of Denial, a fast weapon like a longsword, curved sword, or rapier with lightning blade, and Yorshka’s chime with 60 faith.
The key to beating Slave Knight Gael is sustained, quick damage due to his high health pool and damage output. Use sunlight spear or lightning arrow miracle to poke damage when he gets away from you. In the first phase, a shield is effective, but be careful of his forward leaping attack, which is unblockable.
When he screams, roll away, as he will perform a three or four-hit flurry ending in a leaping attack. This attack provides an opportunity for you to deal damage.
In the second and third phases, rolling away from attacks is recommended instead of blocking as his dark damage follow-up can quickly drain your stamina and result in a counter hit from him.
Roll towards and behind him at the last moment to avoid his attacks. Wait for his longer combos or leaping grab to rebuff your weapon when your lightning blade runs out.
Pyromancy – Strategy
It is recommended for Pyromancers to use Chaos Bed Vestiges instead of Great Chaos Fire Orb due to its faster travel speed and straight projectile trajectory. GCFO has less base damage than CBV and may miss Gael if he is moving quickly or in a low, hunched posture. Avoid using dark pyromancies since he is resistant to them.
Only cast after Gael shows an opening, as his movements may cause your pyromancies to miss. In Phase 2, keep your distance from Gael and be aware of his range. He will usually attack twice in succession, and his cloak will typically follow his attacks, except for his forward stab which comes slightly after.
Look for moments when Gael has a large delay before his next series of attacks and take advantage of them to get some shots off.
Frost & Fire Build – Strategy
You can beat Slave Knight Gael using frost and fire-focused builds, which makes this strategy ideal. Essentially, any attack that can effectively trigger the frostbite status effect and any attack that can inflict fire damage can accomplish this.
One of the most efficient methods is by using a pure strength build, wielding Vordt’s Great Hammer and an Arbalest equipped with explosive bolts. When the frostbite effect is triggered, the enemy loses 11% of their maximum health and enters a 30-second cooldown where they lose stamina recovery.
Any fire-based attack can immediately remove this effect, allowing skilled players to stack frostbite on-hit effects indefinitely continuously.
On a “quality” build, players can achieve a similar effect using the weapon art of the Pontiff Knight Curved Sword at close range.
Casters can utilize Snap Freeze or Frozen Weapon, in conjunction with Fire Surge or any other pyromancy. Firebombs and black firebombs also scale with strength, making them useful with Vordt’s Hammer as well.
Ringed Knight Paired Greatswords – Cheese Strategy
To cheese Gael, it’s recommended to obtain the Ringed Knight Paired Greatswords from the Ringed Knights and reinforce them to +5. Once you have the weapon, use the two-handed L1 attack on Gael.
While you may take some damage when dealing the first 1 or 2 hits, Gael will be permanently staggered for the entire combo and take massive damage.
However, be cautious not to lose too much health during the first hits in his 2nd and 3rd phases. To avoid this, start the combo when you’re in full health. If executed perfectly, it’s possible to beat Gael in a single attempt.
If you are really frustrated and none of these words are making any sense then watch the boss guide video we have linked below:
If you can understand his move set and take advantage of the windows we mentioned for all the phases, this fight will be much easier. Although I’m aware that this is easier said than done but that is part of the game. You have to GIT GUD!