Dark Souls II Walkthrough, Part Twenty-Five: Iron Keep - Old Iron King

Dark Souls II owned by Namco Bandai. Images used for educational purposes only.
Dark Souls II owned by Namco Bandai. Images used for educational purposes only. | Source

Enough lollygagging. You've spent much of your blood and sweat in the Iron Keep, and despite the nicer times you may have enjoyed in Belfry Sol's cooler climes the end of this area lays close to the lava - perhaps too close for comfort. Yet you must brave the steel and heat, as a king waits to yield up his soul... or to strip your bones of flesh.

Iron Keep

- We'll start out at the entrance of the large room with the movable platforms. To your left is a set of stairs leading down to the side of the room, and a very annoying archer. Run up to him, leaping over the streams of lava that pour down as you pass, and take him out. This will make it much easier to cross the platforms above. There's also a corpse down here holding a Large Soul of a Proud Knight and a Radiant Lifegem. On the way here is one of those jewelled crawler things; kill it from afar and you can collect a nice bounty of a Large Titanite Shard, a Titanite Chunk, and a Firedrake Stone.

- Down the stairs from the archer's position is a path of lava leading to a chest. It contains the Chaos Storm spell. If you head right from the stairs you'll also find a Fire Seed. You'll want to douse yourself in water from jars at the top of this room, as well as suit up with as much fire resistance as you can manage, to grab these.

- Return to the main platforms. There's another archer ahead. Wipe him out, and look to the left of him, on the edge of his platform, for a corpse. It carries a Large Soul of a Nameless Soldier.

- Make your way to the bottom-left platform, nearest the mist door. There's one turtle soldier here. Chuck something at him and he'll run to get to you... likely frying himself on the fire traps in front of him.

- Make your way to the fire traps in the top-right of this area. Watch out for the two top-most platforms - they'll both collapse if you get close.

- Dash past the firetrap ahead when it stops breathing flame. Beyond, beside the mist door, is a body carrying a Large Soul of a Nameless Soldier and a Monastery Charm.

- After clearing the room, you can find a quick way to get back to this mist door. Return to the switch that lowers and raises the platforms and bring down the fire traps. They'll allow you to access a ladder at the far end of this room. At the top you'll find a long path, leading path two chests, and a ladder. The first chest is a mimic; attack to get it to reveal itself, then kill it off and it'll drop a Dark Armor and a Lightning Winged Spear. The second contains ten Destructive Greatarrows. Climb the ladder.

- The ladder leads to a small room with a Pharros' Lockstone face (no clue what's behind it yet) and a staircase. The staircase will take you out to a small walkway in front of a pit, watched over by three archers. Systematically kill them off, then check a corpse here for a Simpleton's Spice.

- Now the fun begins. You must carefully drop your way down into the building, falling from beam to beam. Be careful and slow, and only drop when you're correctly lined- up with the next beam. On your way down you'll find a corpse carrying a Cracked Red Eye Orb and a Torch.

- Eventually you'll drop into a wide room filled with lava. Fall down onto the large smelting pot below, minding the lava inside it (and the Covetous Gold Serpent Ring on the skeleton at the edge of it) and walk onto the beam it's beside. There's a soldier on the other side of the beam; kill him very carefully.

- Hop off of the beam to the stairs ahead. There's a misty door beside you; it leads back to the room with the platforms. Go down the stairs and through the narrow chamber ahead. There's an armoured turtle dude down it. Take it out.

- Use the switch by this guy to lift the small blockage here. Run forward until you reach the path to the right, then flee backwards, past the blockade. Another turtle soldier will come at you, and you don't want to get caught when the blade slides back into place. Fight it as you did the first.

- The next room contains spiked walls and a fire trap. Slowly make your way past the flames to get to the passage on the opposite side. Stand in the passage for a brief second, then back up. A third turtle knight will run in... and likely get fried by the fire.

- In the top-left corner of this small room is a ladder. Climb up it, and up the ladder in the next large room you find. Up here you'll find the Eygil's Idol Bonfire, at long last... and a switch that will shut down those stupid fire-breathing bulls everywhere in this dumb castle. Woooo!

- Climb back down to the spiked room, take out the turtle guard again if you used the Bonfire, check near one of the bull statues for a Lightning Short Bow +1, and go down the unchecked passage. You'll emerge at the rear of the castle. Ahead...

- ... is a mist gate. And, yes, this one has a boss.

Old Iron King

Compared to the Smelter Demon, the Old Iron King is actually a rather easy boss, though melee fighters will have a harder time of things. An enormous demon surrounded in lava, the Old Iron King relies on a mixture of fiery attacks and fist slams to do in his attackers. In all cases he's ponderously slow, and you can see his attacks coming a mile away. You can expect the following:

- A basic fist slam. The Old Iron King rears back and smashes the ground where you're standing (hopefully were standing). This seems to have a slight area of effect if you don't roll far enough to the side.

- A fire-breathing attack. The Old Iron King unleashes a spray of slow flames that cover a fair distance. If you're careful you can move between these flames, though it's better to just roll past the first flame or two as the King is sweeping across the platform.

- A beam attack. The Old Iron King points; a thin, quick beam follows. Not that difficult to avoid, though if you're in the way you're in deep trouble.

- A diving attack. The Old Iron King will dip into the lava, spattering your small platform with the stuff. It will emerge with similar effect a few moments later. Keep away from the edge and you should be safe.

Generally the key here is to wait until the Old Iron King is either in the middle of an attack or just recovering from one before unleashing your own barrage. Melee players will have to get up close and attack his belly; ranged fighters can back off and pepper him whenever he's not attacking with flame. If you're having trouble with pure melee the Lightning Short Bow you just found can seriously hurt the Old Iron King, as he's weak to lightning. Otherwise? Not that big a threat... so long as you don't get hit. If you do you stand a good chance of being tossed in the lava, and that's an instant-kill for the good King.

- Beating this hefty beast will earn you the Old Iron King Soul. You'll also gain access to the small building at your back, where you'll find a chest containing Sublime Bone Dust and a Primal Bonfire that'll shoot you back to Majula. Another great soul collected! Fine work...

- ... but you're not done in Iron Keep. There's one more item to collect now that you've stopped the flaming bull heads. Return to the Keep's foyer to find one of these heads, the first in the place. There's a corpse in front of it, and now that you've stopped the flame you can grab its item. It carries an Iron Key.

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