When it comes to dungeon delving, Elden Ring gives you almost too much to be getting on with. If you’ve found yourself inside the Minor Erdtree Catacombs then you’ve probably run up against several problems, not least of all the giant boss fight just outside the entrance. This guide will teach you how to get through the dungeon safely, and even what to expect in the boss room when you get to it.
How to find the Minor Erdtree Catacombs
You can actually reach this dungeon pretty much immediately, but since it’s found in Caelid it’s also surrounded by tough enemies. Head to the north of the misty forest, and you’ll find an area where the landscape changes to a mars-like red color. Stick to the north edge of the area and keep heading east and you’ll come to the base of an Erdtree. This particular tree is guarded by a boss, so fight it if you want, or ignore it and run around the tree to find a doorway in the side of the cliff face that you can get inside of. This is the Minor Erdree Catacombs dungeon.
Minor Erdtree Catacombs walkthrough
Head down the stairs from the point of grace but be on your guard and stop when you reach the bottom. You should see an imp clinging to the ceiling who plans to drop on your head and take you down. Bait him to the ground and finish him quickly. Keep moving forward and activate the summoning pool if you like, then get on the lift and head down. Ignore the hallway behind you as you’ll come back that way later on. Instead, head down the stairs and carefully take down the imp that’s waiting for you.
Around the corner, another imp will start throwing projectiles at you, but if you rush into the room you’ll be ambushed from the left side. Take him out from a distance, then duck into the room and take out the imp in the back left corner. There are no other enemies in the room so head for the opposite door. Don’t run straight for the level, because in the room just to the right of the entrance is another imp, with a second one hanging from the ceiling. Use baiting tactics to take them out and then pull the switch to unlock the boss.
If you want to skip straight ahead to the boss you now can (just go to the ‘straight to the boss’ heading below), but there is some other loot to get as well. Go back to the lift and stand on the switch, but quickly jump off again before it rises. This should reveal a secret passage below the lift where the rest of the dungeon is hiding. From here, you can snipe the imp below if you have ranged abilities, or just hop down there and take him out if not. Head down the stairs but don’t run into the red pool. This stuff will give you the Scarlet ROt, which is a deadly status effect. NEVER ROLL IN THIS LIQUID. Elden Ring uses Dark Souls 2 logic, and if you roll in it, the status effect will last way longer than it should.
From the bottom of the stairs, follow the path that we indicate above. You should be able to sprint forward and up the stairs to the right without getting caught on the weird blobs that inhabit the red stuff. Whatever you do, don’t stop to pick up any items in the red gunk. Those blobs will drop onto your head and have a good chance of killing you unless you’re at full health. If you want any of those items, you’ll need to bait the blobs down from the roof first and then grab the items while they’re distracted.
At the top of the stairs, you’ll find a room filled with crabs. They’re pretty easy to kill and the only other thing in the room is 3 more crabs who crawl out of the ground. Grab the loot once they’re dead, then head up the ladder on the right. To your left is an imp pretending to be a statue, so take him out, then do the same with his friend that’s opposite the ladder. Head through the corridor and an imp will drop down near the end ready for you to end his life.
The next chamber is clear so run in and grab the item on the altar. The room to the right connects to that corridor I told you to ignore at the start of the game, and the ground floor of it is filled with that crimson goo and those blob monsters. The upper level has two different imps who will throw exploding urns at you when they spot you. Run straight at the first one and take him out before the other can get his crap together, then do the same with his friend. Jump down into the red stuff and sprint straight for the opposite corridor, because if you pick up the loot you’ll get slimed by roof goo. You can grab it once those blobs are on the floor, but either way, follow the corridor back around the drop back into the hole again.
Straight to the Boss
Run down the stairs and stop at the edge of the red pool to let your stamina come back. Then sprint straight forward and around the corner to find yourself outside the boss room. Ignore all the loot, because it’s liable to get you killed if you try to get it. There’s not much to find in this room other than the statue of Marika (which should at least be some comfort), so head down the stairs to find the fog gate.
Minor Erdtree Catacombs Burial Watchdogs boss fight
Just like the other catacombs, you’ll find this one guarded by a Burial Watchdog, the only difference this time is that there are two of them at once. One obvious tactic would be to summon someone to help you because it means that someone can pull aggro on the one watchdog you’re not trying to take on. If you’re determined to go completely solo, at least consider putting down your own summon sign outside the gate so you can get a bit of practice in.
When you enter, if you’re fighting alone you can perform an ash summons while the two are still waking up if you want to draw some of that heat off of yourself. Other than that, make sure that you keep the lock-on turned off, and use the camera manually to watch both of the watchdogs at the same time. You don’t want to get caught out by one of their heavy attacks while you’re focusing on the other watchdog.
Minor Erdtree Catacombs Burial Watchdogs attacks
Each watchdog has only a few different kinds of attacks, and pretty much all of them can be avoided by running fast enough in the opposite direction. The scepter watchdog has a cluster of magical projectiles, a magic AOE, and a few measly swipes. The sword watchdog focuses mostly on swings with the sword but can wind up a huge spin attack if you’re standing behind him. Both will occasionally get up on their hind legs and slowly approach until they slam down with their weapon. This attack has a huge recovery time, so attack them quickly and get out of there.
One final attack to look out for is fire breath. It’s pretty slow and does considerably less damage than their other attacks, so you can usually run around them and swipe at their back while they’re distracted. The only real tactic here is to bide your time and wait until both watchdogs have performed an attack at the same time that leaves them both vulnerable. Make sure you keep your eye on both of them and try your best to stick to running rather than dodging unless you’re sure an attack is going to hit you if you don’t. For your reward, you’ll get a pretty decent ash summons: the Mad Pumpkin Head.