First bosses are a rite of passage in the Dark Souls series, and the first boss in Dark Souls 3 is no different. Here’s how to get the latest instalment started right.

Iudex Gundyr, aside from having a name as difficult to pronounce as Dark Souls 3 is to play in its later stages, is not the most challenging boss players will encounter over their adventure into the Kingdom of Lothric. Not everyone is capable of beating Iudex Gundyr using only their fists, however, and for many gamers Dark Souls 3 will mark their first entry into a series that has grown much more popular in recent years since its humble beginnings. For those new to the series or needing a refresher course on the fundamental mechanics of Dark Souls 3, Iudex Gundyr can be a surprisingly frustrating challenge.

While not being a proper boss battle in the Souls series sense of scale and difficulty, Iudex Gundyr is a big enough challenge that he warrants discussion as a potential roadblock for Dark Souls 3 beginners. Adventurers should employ what has become the standard approach to big dude fights in the Souls series and circle Gundyr, rolling towards and behind him as he swings his impossibly large weapon. This tactic will allow gamers to survive most of Gundyr’s attacks unscathed while also leaving the boss vulnerable to a few quick attacks from behind before he is ready to swing again. Of course, those players experiencing a poor framerate in Dark Souls 3 will find these timing-based mechanics a little more frustrating, but luckily this fight takes place away from the area most affected by these problems.

Gamers who have to use an Estus Flask or two will need to be wary of Gundyr’s leaping attack, as it has a fairly long range but a relatively small hitbox – dodging to the left or right is usually enough to prevent taking any damage, but players need to give themselves enough time to do so. Get familiar with dodging in Dark Souls 3, as it is a skill just as important now as it has been in past Souls games, and will be necessary in making sure gamers who decide to purchase the “You Died” Dark Souls 3 gear that was recently announced are doing so ironically.

Once players have whittled down Gundyr’s HP to about one-third, the already hulking brute will transform into his even more grotesque second form. Gamers who find they’ve been doing solid chunks of damage in bursts will find this phase relatively simple, as they should be able to kill Gundyr before any of his new abilities come into play. Those who have been taking a slower approach will need to be wary of his suddenly increased range, which will make Estus breaks that much more difficult to attempt safely.

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Overall, the most important thing to keep in mind while fighting Iudex Gundyr is that he’s a boss designed explicitly to hammer home how important the basics of Dark Souls 3 combat are. Players willing to take the extra time to manage their stamina, learn when to roll or block, and enact patience during each stage of a boss fight will be rewarded with a relatively easy start to their Dark Souls 3 campaign.

Once gamers have vanquished Gundyr, they’ll be rewarded with the Coiled Sword key item and the sense that maybe, just maybe, they’ll survive the harrowing yet enjoyable Dark Souls 3 experience.

Dark Souls 3 is available now on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

Source: VG 24/7