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How to beat Draconic Tree Sentinel and access Leyndell, Royal Capital in Elden Ring

The Draconic Tree Sentinel is the beefy version of the Tree Sentinel you may already be familiar with, except much harder.

Update: We've streamlined the information on this page and added some additional tips so that you have little to no problem taking on the ghastly Draconic Tree Sentinel.

Elden Ring is about to let you into one of its most beautiful, richly detailed, complex and difficult areas. We’re talking, of course, about the Royal Capital of Leyndell – which you may have heard a thing or two about over the course of your journey in The Lands Between so far.

Entering Leyndell is no easy feat, however. The capital is guarded by brutal, high-level enemies who are all ready to bounce on you at a moment’s notice. But while you can ignore most of them, one in particular must be defeated before you gain access to the city from a certain side.

That boss is the Draconic Tree Sentinel, a souped-up version of the Tree Sentinel field boss you’ve likely already fought. The Draconic Tree Sentinel may not be a demi-god Shardbearer, but he cannot be avoided if you want to access that part of the Altus Plateau.

When should you fight the Draconic Tree Sentinel in Elden Ring?

The Draconic Tree Sentinel is technically an optional boss, but it’s one many players will naturally run into as they attempt to access the Royal Capital of Leyndell from the Capital Rampart (north) direction.

The entirety of the Altus Plateau - where the capital is situated - is a challenging, high-level zone meant for players towards Elden Ring’s end-game. We recommend attempting the Draconic Tree Sentinel boss fight when you’re ready to face what awaits in the capital.

How to make the Draconic Tree Sentinel boss fight easier in Elden Ring

Despite his ornate gilded armour, the Draconic Tree Sentinel is ultimately just a human underneath. The boss takes poison and scarlet rot damage, and though it’s not massive, every tick gets you ever closer to taking him down.

We always advise players to summon Spirit Ashes for help, and this remains true for this boss. We recommend bringing along the Spirit Jellyfish. It does pitiful damage, but is great at inflicting poison – particularly if you can upgrade it. You can get the Draconic Tree Sentinel poisoned even faster if you enchant your weapon with any kind of poison or rot grease.

He also takes frost damage, though only temporarily. Afflicting him with this element will slow down his movement for a time. If you have it, the Icerind Hatchet (+4) is a great way to do this easily.

The Draconic Tree Sentinel is also rather strong against Bleed build-up, but that doesn't mean you can't use it. While it'll take a little longer than normal to build up Blood loss on the enemy, it's still possible, and watching those chunky pieces of HP get chopped off his health bar is still as satisfying as ever, if you can land enough hits in quick succession.

On top of that, if you want a very easy time of it, using Ekzyke's Decay to overwhelm the boss with scarlet rot rather quickly and easily. Especially when paired with a powerful summon such as the Mimic Tear or Black Knife Tiche who can easily take aggro for you.

We suggest starting the fight at level 60 or above, with a +12/+14 weapon.

How to beat the Draconic Tree Sentinel in Elden Ring

Unlike his earlier incarnation, the Draconic Tree Sentinel has two phases to his boss fight.

Draconic Tree Sentinel boss fight phase one

The Draconic Tree Sentinel is a challenging boss with hard-hitting melee attacks, as well as accurate tracking and ranged attacks. It’s a good idea to start the first phase of the fight on a horse, particularly if you brought a summon. Doing this lets you begin the fight faster, and allows you to land several free hits before he finishes his initial animation.

The first phase is generally easier, doubly so if you manage to stay on your horse for the entirety of it. In this phase, the boss relies on four main attacks. The first is a traditional swipe with his weapon, but its direction and speed vary – so you need to watch out for that.

The other common attack is another one he’ll use when you get close, and it can be a shield swipe or an overhead slam, depending on where you are in relation to him. The Draconic Tree Sentinel will also occasionally perform a far-reaching jump with an overhead slam. This attack is easy to avoid if you dodge into him/around him. If you decide to dodge backwards away from it, however, you’ll likely get hit.

If you stay at range long enough, the horse will shoot fireballs at you. The wind-up for this animation is long enough that you can anticipate it, and the fireball itself travels slowly enough that you can either outrun it by sprinting to the either side, or dodge into any direction.

Outside of that, you may see him perform a horse stomp, similar to the one the normal Tree Sentinels utilise, and it does around the same damage.

The boss’ hitbox is large, so be careful not to let him get you stuck into a corner, you likely won’t be able to get out of it.

Draconic Tree Sentinel boss fight phase two

Phase two is where things get much harder. The Draconic Tree Sentinel’s weapon is now imbued with lightning, which will not only up the damage of his normal attacks, it also adds a little bit of splash/AOE damage to the few of them that slam the ground.

The most devastating is also the hardest to dodge in this phase. The boss will raise his shield, allowing him to call down lightning. However, this could end in one of two moves, and one of which is hard to avoid.

The first combos into a swipe that creates a pool of lightning around him, which takes a couple of seconds before it spawns several columns of lightning. You can easily escape this zone once you see the ground is turning red.

The other attack he can combo into lets him call down a bolt of lightning that will hit you even if you’re moving/rolling. The only way to escape it is to dodge a split-second before it gets called. To do this, keep an eye on his shield and roll the instant he snaps it down. This is the only way to time your dodge correctly, otherwise you will take massive damage.

Finally, the Draconic Tree Sentinel will occasionally drag his weapon across the ground to produce a lightning wave. The arc of that wave is wide, but it’s fairly easy to avoid if you spot it coming.

If you find yourself whiffing, back off and reset. This is obviously easier to do in the first phase, but those few seconds could let you summon spirits (if you haven’t already), or heal up.

Want more Elden Ring boss fight tips? We’ve got helpful guides for Margit, Godrick, Rennala and others. Of course, you should always keep the main Elden Ring guide bookmarked to stay updated whenever we add new pages.

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