The 17 most dreadful moments in Dark Souls 3

Contributed by
Oct 17, 2016

Finding a dreadful moment in Dark Souls 3 is like finding a guy in a Deadpool costume during a Comic Con -- there'll always be one around every corner (my favorite is still the Gwenpools). But each and every Dark Souls 3 character will definitely find a way to crawl up your spine and invade your dreams, as the experience of playing a Dark Souls game has been known to send gamers into a rage (lovingly known as Dark Souls Rage), a passive depression or a fit of annoyance that leads to throwing your controller at a wall. For the people that love the game, it creeps under the skin, like a tattoo or a scar, as a badge of achievement for beating one of the hardest games currently made. Below are 17 of the most dreadful experiences one faces in Dark Souls 3. Enter if you dare!


  1. When we first meet one of these guys, it is stuck to a wall hanging out in the Irithyll Dungeon. It doesn’t attack you (though all of the following ones you meet will); it just simply moans and tells you that yes, this is a screwed up game that doesn’t mind including gigantic fetus-looking creatures with giant heads and membrane eyes.  As you would expect from prisoner fetuses, they aren’t difficult to beat, and only pose a threat when they come at you in numbers or in a surprise attack but these creatures are certain to invade your dreams and provide a stark reminder that in a Dark Souls universe, there’s no limit to how haunting a creature may be.


Every now and again, a Dark Souls game will throw an enemy at you that is unreasonably tough at an inopportune time that will make even the Dalai Lama yell obscenities at the television. The Giant Crab in Road of Sacrifices and Farron Keep is definitely one of those. It’s incredibly difficult to kill, comes in pairs, and is really freaking quick as it runs sideways at you. You’re already in a creepy wooded area, so your hair is already on its end, and the last thing you need is a really fast crab trying to pinch the life out of you, but that’s Dark Souls. Hope you didn’t die as much as I did at this part.


Little thing about me: I hate silverfish. It’s a number one fear of mine. So, a quick way of making my skin crawl is to have silverfish-like centipede creatures that run REALLY fast come at you in the water. I might have even screamed the first time I saw one.  When you encounter one of these in the sewer in Irithyll of Boreal Valley, it looks like a body floating with its head down in the water. When you hit it, the horror begins, and as it attacks you, with its body raised high in the air, well I wouldn’t blame you if you throw your controller down and say you’re done right then and there.


The Catacombs of Carthus is one of the most annoying areas of Dark Souls 3. It’s confusing getting around, it has a big ball of bones ready to crush you like you’re in a pinball game, and the boss of the level arrives in the most terrifying way possible. First, you touch a skull goblet that oozes out a dark fog, smothering the candles in the area until everything is black with the exception of a small beacon of light on a body offering a gift. It’s only when you go to pick up that gift that the BIGGEST SKELETON EVER appears. Why is this skeleton lying on its stomach, why does it have so much jewelry on, and what happen to its legs? These are questions that we’ll never know the answer to. What we do know is maybe it would be smart not to touch a skull goblet next time.


There are a lot of interesting names in the Dark Souls games, including Ceaseless Discharge, Monstrosity of Sin, and, of course, Pus of Man. The Pus of Man comes at you in a transformation from an easy undead creature into a really difficult Humanoid Abysal with a long reach that looks like a worm creature from the movie Tremors. Making you think you’ve got a simple kill and then transforming it into a creature that just won't die is a hallmark theme for the sadistic people that make the Dark Souls franchise, and the glory that is the Pus of Man is a highlight. 


As I said before, I hate big silverfish, but I hate spiders as well (anything that crawls, really), and I especially hate big spider mini-bosses that hang upside-down and jump down on you. The Deep Accursed appears twice in Dark Souls 3, first in the Cathedral of the Deep in a room and second, hanging upside-down, ready to ruin your day, in Anor Londo. This inexplicably hairy spider LOVES to jump off the screen and pounce as well as curse you with its bite. It’s time to dodge for your life again. Gotta love this game!


Prince Ricard is a shirtless man that appears with a crown and a loincloth in Archdragon Peak. Not only is he absolutely ripped with a six pack, but he’s a freaking master with a rapier with a move set that demands instant respect. The worst part about this guy, though, is that he respawns again if you don’t kill the man-serpent next to him! Yep, so you’ve worked incredibly hard to eliminate this cave man prince and, within seconds, he shows up again. Thanks, Dark Souls 3! Gotta break down a man’s soul!


I don’t care how strong you are, this guy is plain tough to beat. Arriving on a dragon and spitting fire, and then combining quickness with absolute power, the Nameless King is the hardest boss in Dark Souls 3. His attacks are fast and erratic and they hit with major damage. Even worse, you can’t bring in summons to help you. Harkwood is the only one you can summon, and he totally wusses out when you go to fight the king. The Nameless King is one of the most difficult enemies in the entire Dark Souls trilogy, so when you’re about to fight him, cancel your plans for the week, because you’ll be there for a while.


Maybe it’s the fact that I live next to a church, but the idea of killing undead clergy just seems freaking wrong to me, and Dark Souls 3 throws a LOT of priests at you. Whether it’s the Deacons of the Deep or just an individual Deacon Priests, these seemingly wealthy undead figures in their purple and gold garb always rub me the wrong way, especially when they do a séance with the nightmare-inducing Cathedral Evangelist. Ahhh, Dark Souls, where killing religious figures of the undead is never an out of bounds concept.


The Vordt of the Boreal Valley is the first tough boss you face in Dark Souls 3 and, while he is on all fours like a dog, he still packs one hell of a punch if he hits you, and he loves charging at you when his health is depleted. Bosses in Dark Souls offer that excellent moment where you’re stressed out beyond all belief and constantly yell, "Oh, my god" and the Vordt of the Boreal Valley will be your first test. Good luck; it doesn’t get any easier from here.


There comes a moment in any Dark Souls game when you realize that you’re simply not strong enough and you’re going to have to farm souls to increase your level. Farming is basically setting aside hours in your day to do the exact same thing: killing the enemies, running back to the bonfire, and then going back to those same enemies and killing them all over again until you have enough souls to increase enough levels so you could beat the boss or area that is just plain too hard. It’s a humbling experience and one to make any girlfriend or boyfriend that doesn’t understand Dark Souls shake their head at the purely ridiculous, but necessary, repetition of your actions. We all have to do it, so put in the hours, beef up, and keep moving forward.


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say "and...I realized that’s when I have to start over." This may be because they would not be able to get the ending they wanted, or that they made a decision that would severely hurt their characters ability to achieve certain powers but, with Dark Souls, you always have to remember, whatever choices you make, you’re stuck with. So, if you kill someone, join a particular covenant, or even accidentally hit someone you shouldn’t have, it can have monumental ramifications that may cause you to have to start the entire game over. Sadly, the Dark Souls series doesn’t allow you to save and take back mistakes, so be cautious. The wrong hit could make all those hours you spent means you’ve just been doing a practice run and you have to start all over again.


The worst enemy you fight in a Dark Souls game will always be the person who invades you at exactly the wrong time. This is especially bad for part-time players. who will constantly play with a paranoia that, at any time, someone will attack that is simply a better fighter, and will destroy your progress, making you go back to the bonfire and kill all the enemies again.  And it always will happen at least once right when you wish it didn’t; when you wish you could just plead to the guy that invaded that you have been playing for hours and you have finally gotten to this section and please, please, please will he reconsider and not kill you. But, of course, you can’t, so prepare to fight against a guy with a giant axe and no heart, because you’ll be at that bonfire with your head down again before you know it.


While Dark Souls has made many improvements from Demon Souls to Dark Souls 3, there’s still the major problem with the camera. There’s always a moment or two in the game when the camera will get stuck, and you’ll have no idea what is going on and, plain frankly, you freak out.  This could lead you to death by falling, death by getting pummeled in a corner, or death by, well, not knowing how you died because you simply can’t see. It’s a horrific moment, especially in a boss fight, and one where you’ll eventually sigh a breath of futility (or a Dark Souls rage...whatever floats your boat). Sometimes, the game just makes you die, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Back to the bonfire, my friend, and hope it doesn’t happen again.


There will undoubtedly be lots of moments in Dark Souls 3 when you’ll die. If you play smart, you should always go back to the Firelink Shrine and never waste large portions of souls. Unfortunately, it’s incredibly tempting just to keep going and not return only to kill all the enemies you just killed with the hope that you’ll persevere. Sadly, you won’t. You’re in Dark Soul 3, where the cards are already stacked against you, so the moment where you lose a massive amount of souls and then fail to recover them will always be a moment of pause when you wonder why you didn’t play it safe. It’ll happen, and just remember you just lost about a half an hour of your life that you’ll have to now spending farming. Enjoy that!


Dark Souls giveth, and Dark Souls taketh away, as in each of the Dark Souls trilogy there are mimics: monsters that pretend to be chests that give you things, only to actually be traps intent on chomping your head off. Once you out them for what they really are, they are very tough creatures, with long arms and legs, that love to grab you and bite away. Just a reminder that in this universe, nothing is ever as it seems.


Size is definitely imposing in Dark Souls, as there will inevitably be times where you’ll look at a creature and be overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of it. The Giant Slave, as well as the Lovecraftian horrors in Bloodborne, impose fear through their incredible size and power. Each time you find one of these creatures in the game, it creates a moment of pause in which you’ll be, like, "Oh, damn, how am I going to beat this guy?" Just be prepared to jump...a lot!