Shovel Knight Boss Tips and Strategy Guide

By   /   Jul 6, 2014

Don’t let the simplicity of the graphics fool you – Shovel Knight is a challenging and fun game that reawakens some of the classic side-scroller adventures many of us have taken in the past. Shovel Knight’s biggest challenges come when facing the bosses towards the end of the stages, and also facing those illusive foes that can appear randomly or need to be found.

Shovel Knight Boss Tips

Needless to say, the boss encounters are exciting, challenging, and can also be fairly frustrating if you’re walking in unprepared. This guide will help you get through all the bosses in the game, whether they are stage bosses or ones encountered in the overworld map.

The Black Knight
The Black Knight is a complete darkened mirror image of the Shovel Knight. He is the first boss of the game, and you face him in The Plains. The Black Knight’s movement and abilities are similar to yours, except for a few additional attacks that may surprise you.

One such attack is when he charges at you with his shovel, while there is also one projectile blast attack. He’ll also occasionally do leaps several times in which he’ll jump to the side, then attempt a downward shovel slash on you.

The Black Knight is fairly easy since it’s the first boss. You just need to watch his moves and learn the patterns, then attack whenever he misses with his moves. Attack him before he launches his projectile blast to disrupt it as well.

Continue this and he should be down in no time.

Specter Knight
The Specter Knight is the boss of The Lich Yard stage. This scythe-wielding agile foe will test your shoveling skills quite a bit, as he has plenty of health and a lot of tricks up his sleeve.

At first, the Specter Knight will attempt to throw his scythe in an arc, then teleport to the opposite side to catch the scythe. He will also have a move in which he will attempt to charge at you with his scythe. Once you have taken a small chunk of his health, he will begin spawning skeletons to fight beside him.

They can be quite a nuisance, so avoid getting hit from them and continue focusing on the boss. When most of his health is gone, he will reduce the lights, making it very difficult to spot yourself.

You’ll have to use visual memory to know your position in relation to the Specter Knight, and avoid his attacks (and attack him) accordingly.

The best time to attack him is right after he teleports to grab his scythe, and also when he is aimlessly floating around. Just be careful during the last stages of the battle as recklessness in the dark can easily make an otherwise successful battle turn into a defeat.

King Knight
The King Knight is the boss of the Pridemoor Keep. This fancy golden-armored king is quite the leaper. He’ll hop around the entire area, which can get fairly annoying. The best way to counter this is to hop with him and try to pogo jump off of him.

His more lethal moves include a dash attack which is followed by him readying his scepter, and also a trumpet move with deadly confetti. Avoid these attacks at all cost, and counter his hoping with your own bit of agility. This should eventually allow you to defeat the King Knight.

Treasure Knight
Big Daddy! The Treasure Knight is the boss in The Iron Whale stage, and he has a big, mean looking harpoon attached to his arm. Thanks to this augmentation, he’ll be able to launch himself all over the arena despite his bulky stature.

He’ll toss his harpoon at you and also try to get uncomfortably close himself, and will also try to counter your aerial maneuvers by launching his weapon towards you. Hopefully you’ve managed to collect a few relics, in which case you should have multiple ways of attacking him without compromising your defenses.

At very low health, the Treasure Knight will throw a chest in the center. Don’t be fooled by this treasure, as it will turn into a whirlpool, and he’ll start throwing bombs into the twisting horror. This is a perfect recipe for your destruction, so avoid it at all costs, and use your relics to make this fight easier.

Plague Knight
The Plague Knight is the main boss in the Explodatorium stage. This guy likes to keep his distance and throw flasks of potions here and there, making a mess and setting the entire place on far. In that start the entire arena will be filled with rocks – the Plague Knight will start throwing his potions, which will explode the rocks and also start fires that will travel towards the edges.

The best way to attack him is to attempt pogo jumps and side attacks, meaning you’ll need to use your aerial skills. He will also transform certain blocks into purple flasks – these blocks will create decent-sized explosions whenever a potion is thrown by the Plague Knight at them, so avoid standing there at all costs.

In the later stages of the battle, he will also turn several blocks close to each other into purple ones and throw a potion at one of them, causing a massive chain reaction that can do large amounts of area damage. Hopefully you have some defensive relics with you to make life easier.

Apart from these ranged attacks, there is little the Plague Knight offers. He’s weak against aerial assaults and has little threat when you’re up close.

OPTIONAL BOSS – Mr. Hat
If you want to fight Mr. Hat, you’ll have to go to the Armor Outpost and enter the Hat Shop. You’ll find three guys there who don’t have enough money to buy a hat. Give each one of them 1000 Gold, after which they’ll leave.

The owner of the shop, Mr. Hat, will become fixated on your ‘helmet’, so much that he’ll want to fight you for it.

Mr. Hat has two different styles, based on the type of helmet/hat he is wearing. This can be a bit hard to deal with if you don’t really know his pattern.

One hat is a black helmet with a spike, anis d he’ll wield a sword while wearing it, with a stance specifically meant to negate and counter your pogo attacks. He will also have a melee slash attack, and will throw additional swords in the air that will chase you around.

Try to avoid his attacks and stay on the ground – only counter him when he attempts slash attacks or after you have successfully dodged his flying swords. It’s advised not to use pogo attacks on him when he is wearing his black helmet.

His second hat is a maroon colored cap. When he wears it, he’ll now utilize explosives and flying discs. You can pogo on these discs to dodge his attacks and take him on during this mode of his.

Once you have defeated him he’ll give you 5000 Gold and leave you alone. Nice way to earn yourself a 2000 Gold profit.

RANDOM ENCOUNTER – Reize
Reize is a randomly encountered boss who will appear in the overworld map after you’ve defeated Treasure Knight. He’s a cocky looking teenager who comes armed with two big boomerangs, which he’ll toss about.

These boomerangs will ricochet around the arena, and while they do Reize himself will get busy jumping and attempting to dive-kick you. The best way to hurt him is to attack him midway his dive-kicks with a well-timed attack, or to cleverly avoid the kick and instantly counter with a couple of attacks. Make sure you’re avoiding the boomerangs though.

When he’s low on health, he’ll go ultra-defensive and conjure a fire shield. You need to punch through this shield to start hurting him again. Once he’s defeated, you’ll get some gold and also Music Sheet 13.

RANDOM ENCOUNTER – Baz
Baz, like Reize, is a randomly encountered boss in the overworld map. He’s a big, muscular guy who utilizes a large and lengthy whip as his weapon. This whip gives him both a lot of agility and excellent reach.

He’ll lash at you with his whip from distance and also block pogo attacks. He will also go into Pitfall mode and swing about with his whip, making him all that more difficult to track. Keep at him until he lowers his guard and lets in a few attacks from you. He is also quite susceptible to carefully executed attacks while he’s swinging about.

However, once he’s done swinging, he’ll slam on the ground creating a shockwave that can stun you and leave you open to some deadly attacks. At lower health Baz will start absorbing lightning strikes at him and unleash them towards you from himself.

It’s quite difficult to pogo attack him during this duration because of the lightning strikes, so tread carefully till he leaves an opening for you to attack him.

Once he’s down, you’ll get lots of blue gems as reward.

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