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How to Beat Starscourge Radahn in "Elden Ring"

Matt Bird writes all sorts of nonsense, but he dedicates a large chunk of his time to writing game walkthroughs.

All images copyright FromSoftware.

All images copyright FromSoftware.

Known as one of the larger bosses in Elden Ring - especially noteworthy since he's so mobile - Starscourge Radahn is both tragic and ridiculous. Feasting on the dead with no further aim in life but to wander the desert, Radahn is terrifying and sad... and so, too, is his horse, which is incredibly small compared to its massive rider. You have to take them down to complete the main story of Elden Ring, however, so put your misgivings aside.

This guide will help you defeat Starscourge Radahn in Elden Ring. This is a very different boss battle from anything else in the game, so be prepared to change your way of fighting drastically if you want to bring Radahn down.

Finding Radahn

Radahn lives in a huge chunk of desert on the eastern side of Caelid, though you're barred passage to this place from all but one spot: Redmane Castle. You'll find Redmane Castle on an island in the south of Caelid, accessible by traveling to Caelid's central swamp, going through Sellia, Town of Sorcery, and heading south. You can make a beeline down the road from Sellia to Redmane Castle.

Once you reach Redmane, you'll find the grounds barren of life, hostile or otherwise. On the castle's side of the bridge is a teleportation portal. Enter it to reach the castle grounds, where you'll find a number of warriors waiting to begin a festival. Agree to participate and you'll learn Radahn's story, and be sent off to fight him. Follow the path down to the beach north of the castle and you'll find a teleportation portal over to Radahn's miserable home. The fight begins as soon as you arrive.


Radahn's Moveset

Radahn's moveset changes as you get closer to him and do more damage. Initially he'll fire massive arrows at you as you're approaching his hill, and all you can do is try to avoid them by rolling, or, if your Stamina is high, throw up a shield. Get close enough and he'll call down a massive hail of arrows. Stay out of their path. (Occasionally he'll fire this fistful of arrows directly at you, so keep an eye on the angle of his bow.) Once you're within melee range, Radahn will do the following:

  • He'll swing his massive stone cleavers at you. Pretty standard attack, though Radahn's size makes them a force to be reckoned with. Rolling away from them isn't likely to get you out of the way, so it's wiser to try and roll towards Radahn. Radahn will often turn this into a four- or five-slice combo, so avoiding the initial slices probably won't be enough.
  • He'll try to chop down at you with both cleavers. Again, roll towards Radahn, not away. (Though the range on this one isn't quite as far-reaching as his other attacks, so rolling any direction is fine.)
  • He'll leap into the air, then perform his double chop. Radahn's hang time gives you a moment to roll out of the way, though don't roll too early or Radahn will squash you anyway.
  • He'll use a gravity pull to suck everyone in towards him, doing minimal damage in the process. So long as there are lots of summons around this is generally to your advantage, as you can get right in at his feet and knock him around a bit.
  • He'll zip around on his horse (that poor horse needs to retire) and slice at the ground. Roll towards him as he's coming towards you and he'll fly right past.
  • Radahn will slam the ground and send a crackling cone of purple energy at you. Roll into the blast to avoid it. Rolling backward will generally ensure you get caught.
  • Radahn will slam his cleavers together and then into the ground, releasing an area of effect shockwave. Get out of the way when you see the clap, as rolling to avoid just the initial slice isn't enough.

Once you cut Radahn down to half of his health he'll leap into the sky, and the battle will seem to be over... until he rockets back down. He'll become more aggressive in the second phase, and seems more likely to target you, personally, over any summons. At this point Radahn adds one more move to his repertoire:

  • As the second phase starts Radahn will summon meteors that hover around his head. He will fire these at you if you're far enough away, which is a major pain if you're off trying to summon people. Not much you can do but roll to avoid, and keep mountains of sand between the two of you.
  • Radahn can also conjure up small balls of energy and send them flying towards you. If you ride hard to one side you should skim past all of them.

Beating Radahn

Unlike many battles, where you need to adapt as you go, fighting Radahn will be a bit paint-by-numbers in terms of your approach. That doesn't make the fight easy, but it is predictable on your part. This is a multi-step battle:

  • When the fight begins, run towards the piece of wreckage and the three glowing symbols that are straight ahead. These are summoning runes, and they'll pull warriors into the battle with you. Rapidly bring them all in. Radahn will fire an arrow at you, but so long as you're behind the wreckage you'll be safe.
  • Ahead and a bit to the right is another piece of wreckage and two more summon signs. Run towards it, roll when Radahn fires his next arrow - wait maybe a second after he fires, just as you can hear it coming, before you roll - then get behind the wreckage and summon the next two warriors.
  • Hop on your horse and wheel to the left. There's a line of wreckage in the distance with another summon sign. Get it, then head back to roughly the center of the battlefield, where Radahn was raining down arrows. There's yet another summon sign.
  • By this point your warriors will be reaching Radahn, and you can either join them in fighting him or check atop Radahn's starting hill, and off to the right, for a few more summon signs.
  • Get in close to Radahn on your horse and start to smack him around. If you're a melee character you'll want to get right under him from behind and just sit there, hitting Radahn in the butt. If you're a ranged fighter, keep at a bit of a distance and move immediately if Radahn starts to target you.
  • With so many warriors pelting Radahn at once he should stagger before he hits his second phase. If so, take advantage of the moment to whittle his health down. If not, well... either way, Radahn will take off into the sky.
  • Immediately wheel towards the sea. There's more wreckage down here with new summon signs to exploit, and going this far over will protect you from Radahn's explosive return to the battlefield.
  • After this all you can do is continue to smack away at Radahn and hope your team holds up. If your horse goes down, make sure you stay under and behind Radahn to avoid the majority of his attacks.

In short, do not try to fight Radahn alone. Your job in this fight is to summon fresh blood, not to go solo. (Though you probably can defeat Radahn alone, it's just... very difficult.)

You'll earn 70,000 Runes, the Remembrance of the Starscourge, and Radahn's Great Rune for defeating Stascourge Radahn. Bear in mind, however, that you need to go to the Divine Tower of Caelid before you can make any use of the Great Rune.