Wow. Just now I managed to defeat the DLC boss completely solo, without even the NPC summon, at level 86. Holy moseys, that was punishing, but the payoff at the end matches if not exceeds it. I have never gone from feeling like “I will never be able to do this” to “I have this on lockdown” in a shorter time.
The first time I fought her I did summon the NPC, and more or less brute-poised my way through the fight, which isn’t to say that it wasn’t difficult but having her attention on you for less than 100% of the time does make a huge difference.
I’d been told that the first stage is especially easy to parry, which was only half true because anything slower than a fist weapon parry is too slow to get a perfect parry on most attacks. It still worked though, I took a bit of damage but I landed more parries in all of the attempts at this boss than in all of my previous playtime combined. Initially I was using the BK greataxe which hits like a truck but takes up all my stamina in two swings, so I used the BK glaive instead.
So phase one was relatively trivial, but the same tactic just wasn’t going to cut it for phase two. So I kept my attention on target number two, rather than risk being cut to ribbons. This worked out well enough that I beat phase two three times in my two dozen attempts or so, and only for phase three did I ember up.
In the first two I just got slaughtered, first because I was still wielding the greataxe, and second because I kept getting caught by the grab attack. My third attempt was a thing of beauty though, I’d beaten the second phase with only a sliver of health left, got it all back from my ember, and wore phase three down with perfectly spaced halberd swings, interrupting her jump attacks and generally being in control of the situation. I won with six estus left. It was awesome.
I also did the Nameless King today but he’s lame horse compared to this boss. Although, a lame horse with a lot of poise. This was more like fighting a peregrine falcon. Now I just have Old Demon King left and I’ll have wrapped up this no-summon run.
The scythe is ridiculously popular, I’ve fought dozens of people who just spam the spin-to-win weapon skill in the arena. It’s so satifying to just poise through it and smash them down though. They try it again and again, but I have a big-ass weapon and loads of poise, so come at me.
When I saw a video of someone using the scythe in PvE I actually saw moves that I didn’t even know it had. I guess that’s a testament to the skill level of my opponents: normal attacks and spin-to-win are all I ever saw them use.