The Let's Play Archive

Dark Souls II

by IGgy IGsen

Part 16: Black Gulch

Let's get straight to it: I really don't like this area. I mean, it looks really cool. But there's way too many of those freaking statues. They slow down the pace of the area but not in an interesting way. Either that or you can just race through it and avoid everything. I don't blame people for doing that because I've done it on a couple of my runs but it's really not how I prefer to do things. Luckily the area itself is short enough to not weigh down the game as a whole.

The Rotten

A good ol' pile of corpses with a huge-ass cleaver thing. It can use that cleaver in a variety of ways all of which hurt if they connect. Thankfully they are telegraphed way in advance. If you feel confident in your dodging abilities you can just roll. Otherwise you can use the opportunity to get away. If you notice it soon enough, that is. The most dangerous thing he can do with that weapon is a 3-hit combo with two downward swings and one horizontal swing. Once you got his health down enough, I think about half, he may also do a long range directed dark damage blast when swinging his blade down.

Of course he has another hand too. Definitely watch out whenever he looks like he's going to attack you with it because there's a good chance he'll use it to grab you and just twist your body. You might be able to survive that if you upgraded your health sufficiently or have good armor but it does a LOT of damage. He can also just pound his fist to the ground but that's hardly an issue since I recommend panicking away whenever he does anything with it.

You can chop off both of his arms, of course, limiting him in the ways he can attack you. If you have trouble dodging his cleaver attacks just focus your attacks on that arm and you'll have a much easier time. It's usually easier to do than what you see in the video. Apparently it's a little harder on NG++ to actually get the arms off. That or I overestimated the damage I did to his arms.

Once his arms are gone he'll be left with only two attacks. One charge-up AoE blast with a recovery time long enough to get a few hits in and an oil vomit that does fire damage somehow and probably explodes you if you step into the actual burning oil pits that are everywhere.

Positioning yourself correctly is a very important part of this fight since you may get damaged and knocked out of poise for a second if you misstep which allows the Rotten to get an easy hit in. If you're not confident you can move around the Rotten you should get away and force him to move.

Lore-wise all we know is that he's an Old One and apparently related to Nito as he drops the Old Dead One Soul on New Game+, which is most likely the Soul of Nito from the first game.

Soul of the Rotten
Soul of the Rotten, who writhes deep within the Gutter.
The Rotten embraces all, in the sanctuary for all things unwanted or tossed away.


Trade Soul with: Ornifex
Moveset/Weapon Class: Axe
Physical Damage (+0/+5): 112/300
Scales with: STR: A
Requirements: 25 STR, 8 DEX
Damage Type: Slash

In-Game Description:
An oddly large butcher's knife. Not your standard weapon, but certainly deadly enough to be utilized as one.
Absorbs the HP of foes. Who in their right mind would create such a thing? Perhaps it is best not to dwell on how it was likely
used in the past. Effects HP absorb.

Old Dead One Soul
Soul of the ineffable.
This once magnificent soul continues to exert influence over the land, even after the eons have reduced it to these remnants.

Crypt Blacksword

Trade Soul with: Ornifex
Moveset/Weapon Class: Ultra Greatsword
Physical Damage (+0/+5): 148/370
Dark Damage (+0/+5): 80/130
Scales with: STR: D, DEX: D, DARK: A
Requirements: 40 STR, 10 DEX, 12 INT, 12 FTH
Damage Type: Slash

In-Game Description:
Ultra greatsword symbolizing guardianship over the Undead Crypt. The sword has never seen the light of day, and is steeped in dark.


Trade Soul with: Straid
Magic Type: Hex
Requirements: 42 INT, 30 FTH
Description: Reduces damage taken but limits vision to a small area in the middle of the screen.

In-Game Description:
A hex that transforms its caster's flesh. Temporarily reduces receive damage, but darkens one's sight.
If it cannot be observed, it does not exist. Certainly a common conception, but one with far too many exceptions in this world.
Catalyst: staff

Item Descriptions

Dark Souls II: A uniquely-shaped curved sword. The name of its creator is unknown, but he was clearly a true craftsman.
The curved blade is designed to reach around an opponent's shield to deal damage. Use the strong attack to utilize.
Effect: shield piercing (strong attack)
Dark Souls: Curved sword with sharply curved blade.
Created by Arstor, Earl of Carim. Requires great skill to wield, but evades shield defense to sneak in damage.

Sorcery: Great Magic Weapon
Dark Souls II: A sorcery superior to Magic Weapon. Reinforces weapon in other hand with intense magic, allowing for infliction of heavy magic damage.
The old purists of the Melfian Magic Academy view swordplay as a barbaric form of engagement.
Dark Souls: Sorcery which improves upon Magic Weapon. High magic augmentation: right weapon.
At Vinheim Dragon School, only magic swordsmen on special orders are allowed to learn this spell which grants powerful augmentation to various weapons.

Scraps of Life
An esoteric spell created by Navlaan, the infamous exiled sorcerer.
Awakens the souls of the long-buried dead.
The heretic Navlaan was executed along with his entire village, and the mere utterance of his name became a crime. Some say it was because he sought to restore the banned art of resurrection.
Catalyst: Sacred Chime

Forgotten Key
Key found in the Black Gulch Intricately designed, but of unknown origin. All manner of terrible things must have been cast into the Gutter in Majula, forming a settlement of filth and chaos

Soul of a Giant
The soul of a Giant who came to conquer Drangleic.
Will the Giants' resentment of the King be pacified in death, or only emboldened?
Can be used to acquire souls, only...

Havel's Armor
Dark Souls II: The origin of the name Havel is not clear. Some say it was the warrior who wore the armor, but others say that it was the name of a great kingdom ruined in a barbaric war.
Dark Souls: Armor worn by Havel the Rock's warriors. Carved from solid rock, its tremendous weight is matched only by the defense it provides.
Havel's warriors never flinched nor retreated from battle. Those unfortunate enough to face them were inevitably beaten to a pulp.