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Elden Ring Black Knife Catacombs walkthrough

Here's how to get through this tricky dungeon full of traps, secret passages.

elden ring player by skeleton pile in black knife catacombs
Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

The Black Knife Catacombs in Elden Ring is an optional dungeon in the north of Liurnia.

These Elden Ring Catacombs are filled with skeletons, some of which are controlled by powerful necromancers, which you need to defeat to move ahead safely. However, the dungeon is also filled with plenty of loot to get your hands on so the risk is worth the reward.

When you're ready to dive in, here's our Elden Ring Black Knife Catacombs walkthrough.

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Black Knife Catacombs location in Elden Ring

The Black Knife Catacombs are located north-east of Liurnia's Minor Erdtree, which is clearly visible on the map, and the Frenzied Flame Village, just off the Bellum Highway.

A headless knight stands in front of the entrance, by the way. Here is the location on the world map:

elden ring Black Knife Catacombs entrance map location
Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

Exploring the Black Knife Catacombs in Elden Ring

From the Site of Grace behind the entrance, head down the stairs. The main enemies here are skeletons, which will rise again after falling apart unless you smash their shimmering remains.

In the room with the boss door you can find Root Resin and 1x Grave Glovewort (2) then head left deeper into the walls.

elden ring player facing skeleton remains in black knife catacombs
The first skeletons will stand up again until you have smashed their remains. The others with the glowing chest are bound to a summoner. | Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

The two skeletons behind the next area will get up again until you have killed the necromancer in the corridor.

On the left-hand side, you can use a Stonesword Key on the imp statue, but watch out: inside there are two skeletons. Take them out, and then pick up Rosus' Axe next to the coffin and continue through the adjoining passage

elden ring player collecting axe in black knife catacombs
Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

On the left there is 1x Grave Glovewort (2), while the chamber on the right is rather ominous looking, thanks to its three guillotine-like blade traps.

You can ignore the two skeleton archers (they are bound to a necromancer anyway) and run through as soon as the blades have briefly disappeared into the ground. The item in the centre is 1x Spellproof Dried Liver.

elden ring player standing in hall with skeleton enemies in black knife catacombs
Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

In the next room there is 1x Grave Glovewort (3) and a skeleton guarding a ladder down. It leads to a flooded area full of crabs.

Pick up the nearby resources and go carefully into the larger room on the right, where you'll find a corpse with a Rune Arc on it. Two giant crabs will dig their way to the surface and take you in their pincers when you try to do this, so approach with caution.

With a bit of luck, you can have them fight each other, but otherwise you'll have to deal with them both together. You can't go any further down here, as there is a gate blocking access to the lever.

Now what? Go back into the room with the guillotine traps and wait until the central one has sunk into the ground. Stand on it and you will reach the ledge with a skeleton archer and the necromancer. You will also find 1x Grave Glovewort (4) growing here.

elden ring player collecting plant in black knife catacombs
Stand on the trap and you will go up. | Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

After clearing out a few more enemies, you will come to a hidden wall (watch out for online messages), which you can break apart with a sword strike. Behind it, there's another 1x Grave Glovewort (4) and a fog boss fight against the Black Knight Assassin.

Beat the Black Knife Assassin Boss in Elden Ring

You can summon D, Hunter of the Dead for this boss fight if you've progressed far enough in Rogier's quest, so we'd recommend seeking these characters out and completing their sidequests first before attempting this boss.

For more battle tips to help you win this tricky fight, read our guide on how to beat the Black Knife Assassin.

elden ring player battling black knife assassin in catacombs
Image credit: Eurogamer/FromSoftware

Your rewards for beating the Black Knife Assassin are 3150 runes, the Assassin's Cerulean Dagger and the Black Knifeprint.

But that's not all. The Black Knife Assassin isn't actually the 'real' boss of this dungeon. For this, you have to drop into the alcove on the right to land in the chamber behind the barred gate.

You will find Ghost Glovewort (3) and two levers. One for the boss door in the upper area and one for the grate.

Beat the Cemetery Shade Boss in Elden Ring

The Cemetery Shade is an optional boss, but the rewards for defeating it are worthwhile. You'll find a Deathroot you can trade with Gurranq in the Bestial Sanctum, as well as 3500 runes and the Twinsage Sorcerer Ashes.

The Cemetery Shade isn't alone, though, as he's also accompanied by three skeletons. For more tips on how to succeed in this boss battle, read our guide on how to beat the Cemetery Shade.

Once you've defeated the Cemetery Shade, you're safe to exit this cave and carry on with your journey.

That's it for now! If you're looking for more content, check out our Nokron Eternal City walkthrough, Lake of Rot walkthrough, or our Siofra River walkthrough.

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