In his serpentine form, elite boss Praetor Rykard rules over the hellscape that is Elden Ring’s Volcano Manor. Here’s the unique method to beating this monstrous foe!

After many hours traversing the Lands Between, you’ll have encountered some horrifically grotesque creatures. However, few can match the weirdness of Mt. Gelmir’s demi-god boss, Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy.

In the depths of the Manor, Rykard rests. Or rather, the god-devouring serpent that he willingly fed himself to. Rykard is an optional boss, but visually one of the most impressive, so you won’t want to miss him, or his Great Rune!

Plus, you’ll gain a cool new weapon, which is key to beating Rykard. Here’s where to find the Great Spear, and how to use it to bring him down.

Rykard can do some serious damage. Here are the best combinations for your Wondrous Physick Flask to see you through any battle!

God Devouring Serpent Elden Ring

Best Strategy to Beat Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy in Elden Ring

The best strategy to defeat Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy, is using the Serpent-Hunter Great Spear you find right before entering the boss arena.

The special skill of this weapon, Great-Serpent Hunt, unleashes a massive blade of light during this boss fight.

As soon as you pass through the fog wall, you’ll notice a corpse holding a spear. Unusually, you’ll be treated to a short animation as you prise the armament from its hands.

This is the Serpent-Hunter Great Spear, and it’s the key to this entire fight.

The special skill for this weapon uses a lot of FP, so make sure you’re using the best talisman to keep your blue bar full!

Elden Ring Serpent-Hunter

Phase 1: God-Devouring Serpent

  • Two-hand the Serpent-Hunter, as blocking is fairly pointless here.
  • Equipping a Firedrake talisman will help negate fire AoE attacks.
  • Avoid using the slow, heavy attack, instead opting for light attacks or the Great-Serpent Hunt weapon skill.
  • Hitting it a few times will stagger the Serpent!
  • The Great-Serpent Hunt skill takes a moment to charge but will do massive damage and stun the boss.
  • Right after the first Great-Serpent Hunt hit, follow up with a second L2/LT input for a combo that will uppercut the snake!
  • When the Serpent lifts its head, be ready to roll sideways, or it’ll grab you.
  • In rare instances, it will snap its jaws at you; when this happens, backward running works.
  • It also spits poison. The poison damage is minimal but can distract or displace you.
  • Remember that the arena is huge, so you have plenty of room to avoid attacks.
  • The boss is surrounded by magma, but the Serpent-Hunter has a crazy range, so keep your distance!

You can summon help in this fight, and the Mimic Tear will copy your loadout! Check out where to find it and take two Serpent-Hunter Spears into the battle!

Dead Serpent Elden Ring

Once the God-Devouring Serpent is defeated, it’s time for Phase 2: Rykard himself. You’ll be greeted to arguably the most bizarre (but captivating) cutscenes in Elden Ring.

Lord Rykard, whose face is on the bottom of the dead Serpent’s neck, awakens and retrieves his sword (comprised of writhing, bloody limbs) from inside the snake’s throat. This is where the fight gets serious.

Need to boost your base FP amount? Here’s how you can re-spec your Tarnished and allocate your spent XP differently!

Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy Elden Ring

Phase 2: Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy

  • When Rykard swings his sword in a 2-hit combo, dodge into the swing.
  • He will jump into the air, with his impact upon landing throwing magma around the arena.
  • When he extends his head, beware the flaming skull that he emits. Move away from it.
  • Once his health hits 50%, he’ll launch Rykard’s Rancor, an army of floating skulls that will rain down on you. Keep running, but watch out for his continued attacks.
    • Whilst he is charging the Rancor attack, you can get in some free hits.
  • If you survive the Rancor, then the Taker’s Flame attack is up next. Rykard will raise his sword above his head for an incredible slam attack.
    • You can dodge it, but you can also use this opportunity to get in more easy hits.
  • Remember, you can spam the Great-Serpent Hunt skill in this phase. If timed correctly, it is possible to stun-lock Rykard, and he will never hit you.
    • Try using only one L2/LT attack, and repeat it immediately as he recovers and starts to move again.

Rykard’s demise may not be essential for story progression, but some bosses must die. Check out which foes must fall on your path to becoming Elden Lord.

Rykard Sword Elden Ring

Loot Rewards for Beating Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy

Once you defeat Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy, you’ll be awarded:

  • 100,000 Runes
  • Rykard’s Great Rune
  • Remembrance of the Blasphemous

Rykard’s Rune is activated by ascending the Divine Tower of West Altus, which must be accessed via the Sealed Tunnel dungeon. Here’s our guide to help you find it.

And the Remembrance of the Blasphemous can grant you Rykard’s Rancor spell or the infamous Blasphemous Blade. Cash it in with Enia the Finger Reader at the Roundtable Hold to acquire either.

Or, if you want both, here’s how you can duplicate the Remembrances.

Be warned, however – Killing Rykard too early will lock you out of completing Lady Tanith’s questline and gaining the rewards!

Matthew is a writer, filmmaker and gamer from the United Kingdom. He can't remember what his first ever game was, but it was Halo: Combat Evolved that hooked him into the virtual worlds that he now writes about. He would also love to use his background in filmmaking to act as narrative designer on a video game of his own creation.