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Elden Ring Shadow of The Erdtree Messmer The Impaler Boss Guide

Prepare to face the flames as we show you how to locate and defeat Messmer the Impaler in Elden Ring's Shadow of The Erdtree.
Elden Ring Shadow of The Erdtree Messmer The Impaler Boss Guide

As you go through the main bosses of Elden Ring's new Shadow of the Erdtree DLC, you'll eventually need to face the poster child of the DLC itself, Messmer The Impaler. This boss is not an easy task for any player to overcome, regardless of level, but not all hope is lost.

In this guide, we will show you how to locate Messmer in The Land of Shadow and provide some tips on how to defeat this flame-wielding terror in Elden Ring's Shadow of The Erdtree.

Messmer, The Impaler Boss Location

Messmer the Impaler is a two-phase boss fight that you will naturally encounter as you progress through the DLC, as he is a required main boss. You'll find Messmer in the Shadow Keep as you make your way to the top of the building. Before entering, you will come across a Site of Grace and a Stake of Marika for summoning.

Shadow Of The Erdtree Messmer Boss Location
Messmer can be located at the very top of Shadow Keep. (Picture: Shane / FromSoftware)

Regarding Messmer himself, he wields a large staff/spear/polearm weapon and employs various combos that you will likely need some time to get used to. Let's break down his attacks first, then go over the tips you'll need to be aware of before taking on Messmer.

Messmer, The Impaler Boss Fight Overview

Messmer the Impaler Phase 1 Abilities

Shadow Of The Erdtree Messmer Boss Phase 1 tips
Below are the attacks Messmer will use during phase one of the fight. (Picture: Shane / FromSoftware)
  • Spear Thrust: At close range, Messmer quickly thrusts his spear toward you while you're attacking.
  • Double Spear Swing: At close range, Messmer swings his spear to the right and left towards you.
  • Leaping Fire Spear Throw: At mid-range, Messmer leaps high into the air and throws his spear very fast.
  • Messmer's Fury: A multihit combo consisting of several attacks:
    • Jumps towards the target's right backside.
    • Performs a flurry of at least 8 spear thrusts.
    • Attacks from above.
    • Creates an explosion with multiple spears emerging from the ground.
  • Fire Grab: Messmer's hand glows, and then he attempts to grab your character, engulfing them in flame and impaling them if successful. This attack will likely kill or severely injure your character at any level of vigor.
  • Leaping Fire Ball: Messmer leaps into the air, summons a fireball in his hand, and charges toward you.

Messmer the Impaler Phase 2 Abilities

Shadow Of The Erdtree Messmer Boss Phase 2 attacks
Below are the attacks that Messmer will use during phase 2 of the fight. (Picture: Shane / FromSoftware)
  • Explosive Bite: Messmer transforms into a snake, soars sky-high, and then lands with a fireball in his mouth that explodes shortly after. This attack always starts in the second phase but may occur later as well.
  • Snake Attack: Messmer transforms into a giant one-eyed snake and attacks randomly up to three times. This attack has a long range.
  • Wrath of the Serpent: Messmer roars and releases a two-part attack with a medium area of effect. Multiple snakes surround him during this. After the snakes are gone, he attacks similarly to the third and fourth parts of Messmer's Fury.
  • Teleport: Messmer attempts to attack the target from below in serpent form.
  • Messmer's Finesse: At the end of a sword combo, Messmer attacks similarly to the first part of Bloodhound's Finesse.

Taking on Messmer the Impaler is going to be a rough experience at first, but as you get to know his abilities and, most importantly, his cooldowns, you'll be able to face him without too much trouble. During phase 1, the best strategy for both ranged and melee players is to wait for his attack cooldowns before countering or healing, as he hits hard and can delete your health bar in three or four swings if they're charged.

Shadow Of The Erdtree Messmer Boss Phase 1 tips
During phase 1 you'll want to only engage Messmer as his attacks cool down as he doesn't stagger easily and counters extremely quickly to being punished. (Picture: Shane / FromSoftware)

The reason for this is that Messmer has tons of gap closers he can use, be it his regular combos, the Leaping Fire Spear Throw, or even the Fire Grab, which he will run across the arena to perform. So, we suggest keeping your distance as much as you can to see the telegraphing of his attacks, but also give yourself enough range to escape his pokes and optionally dodge into him to deal some damage or safely back away to cast your spells.

You'll also want to ensure that when he does the Messmer's Fury attack, you focus on rolling through it, as getting out of range can be inconsistent. For this fight, you'll want to save as much of your healing as possible for the second phase and dodge as much as you can.

Shadow Of The Erdtree Messmer Boss Phase 2 tips
For phase 2 you'll want to dodge the larger snake attacks and punish them every time if possible, or take the time to heal and engage when he does his regular (though buffed) phase 1 attacks. (Picture: Shane / FromSoftware)

This leads us to the second phase called Base Serpent Messmer, where he uses all the same abilities from phase 1, but now he's faster, can summon massive snakes to attack you, and can teleport around the arena for surprise attacks.

For this phase, you'll want to make sure you dodge the large snakeheads when they attack, and if Messmer teleports to the location of the snake's head, you can squeeze in a few attacks. However, try to back away and not get too greedy as he doesn't stagger easily. When he does his regular (but now more intense) phase 1 attacks, follows the same formula of waiting for his attack to end, countering, and then backing off.

Shadow Of The Erdtree Messmer Boss rewrads
Following these tips you should (with some practice and numerous attempts) be able to bring down Messmer The Impaler. (Picture: Shane / FromSoftware)

This is the best method for phase two, as getting in his face can easily overwhelm you, especially with his Snake Attack, which you can more easily dodge at range and give yourself space to heal or run in and counter. Keep up these strategies, and very soon, Messmer will fall, opening up the next half of the Shadow of The Erdtree DLC.