Imagine that you finally get your invitation to Hogwarts, but when you arrive, everyone wants to kill you, and you have to fight hellhound form Sirius Black to the death instead of finding out that he’s your wrongfully accused estranged godfather. That’s Elden Ring’s Raya Lucaria Academy, and we’re here to help you defeat the legacy dungeon’s first boss, the Red Wolf of Radagon.
PREPARING FOR THE FIGHT
The Red Wolf is the mid boss of Raya Lucaria, but depending on your stats and loadout, might actually be harder than the academy’s main boss. It has a few different types of attacks, and unleashes them in unpredictable ways, making this one tough puppy to properly deal with. Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to prepare.
GEAR UP: RAYA LUCARIA EDITION
There are several useful items just lying around the academy for you to grab, although they’re fairly well hidden. For armor, nab the Carian Knight set, as there’s a good chance that it’s better than whatever you’re currently wearing. Find it near the Church of the Cuckoo site of grace.
Venture through the graveyard like normal, but just before you reach the entrance that takes you to the large lift, look to your right over the ledge, and jump down toward the three zombie-things kneeling at the large tombstone. The armor has fairly high magic defense for its weight category, and it’s light enough that you can probably incorporate pieces (or all) of it into your loadout without passing the threshold into “heavy load” territory, where your dodge roll will become significantly slower.
If you’re too close to that equip load threshold to equip anything new, you should pay a visit to the Roundtable Hold, where you’ll be able to pick up the Arsenal Charm from Nepheli Loux in the library — if you spoke to her at Stormveil Castle and summoned her for the Godrick fight. This talisman is incredibly useful, as it raises your maximum equip load, allowing you to wear heavier gear without slowing your movements.
Lastly, if you’re a spell-caster, grab the Graven-School talisman. Offensive spells won’t help you much against the Red Wolf, which has high magic resistance, but there are still some sorceries you might want to cast during this battle, like Scholar’s Shield, which will improve your ability to block the Wolf’s attacks as long as it’s active. The talisman is behind a false wall just shy of the Red Wolf’s boss fog gate (along with a powerful spell that you probably can’t cast yet).
The Scholar’s Shield enchantment spell, meanwhile, is available from Sellen, a spell vendor located underground at the Waypoint Ruins in western Limgrave.
Lastly, if you don’t already have the Spelldrake Talisman, head to the Earthbore Cave dungeon on the Weeping Peninsula, the landmass south of the Bridge of Sacrifice in Limgrave, and defeat the boss there to get it. Equipping it will increase your defense against the Red Wolf’s powerful magic attacks, so it’s well worth the trip.
LEARN THE RED WOLF’S ATTACKS
The Red Wolf of Radagon has some truly mean attacks, and he likes to launch them in quick succession and in unpredictable sequences that can break your guard — and your spirit — faster than a glinstone arc kills penguins on the beach.
These attacks fall generally into three categories:
- Flame sword: The Red Wolf manifests a flaming sword in his jaws and swipes it at you. There are several versions of this, including a single slash, a double slash, a spinning slash that can hit you twice, a leaping slash with a long delay, and a triple combo that starts with two ground slashes and ends with a fast leaping attack. When the Wolf pulls this sword out, it’s almost impossible to predict which of these attacks he’s going to use, so it’s best to simply dodge and pray to the Erdtree.
- Bite: The Red Wolf lunges at you with his jaws. He almost always strikes twice. However, sometimes he adds a third bite after a short delay, so don’t try to get a hit in after two snaps. The third bite seems to be more likely to occur if you’re still in front of him after the second one. Count on that, pause for a moment, then dodge toward him, and get a strike in after the third bite.
- Magic: The Red Wolf has a few different offensive spells. His most common involves a flanking leap that summons glyphs in the air, which shoot you with a magic missile after a brief delay. It shouldn’t take you too long to get the dodge timing down on that, although things get tricky when he follows up with a close range attack after setting up the glyphs. The more dangerous spell by far involves a delayed leap into the air and a much larger missile that can potentially take out your entire health bar. If the Wolf jumps without summoning its flame sword first, be sure to dodge or get your shield up in time to block it (this is where that shield enchantment spell, Scholar’s Shield, comes in handy).
As far as damaging the boss back, you’re not going to have much luck with magic attacks, so don’t bother enchanting your sword with a spell like Scholar’s Armament. Similarly, if you’ve been pumping points into intelligence and your main weapon is doing magic damage, consider altering its damage affinity using the Ash of War system at a site of grace. You can always change it back once you’re done at Raya Lucaria.
You can also check your inventory for Fire Grease and coat your armament with it to cause the Wolf some extra damage. The cookbook that includes the recipe to craft it can be found in a bandit camp northeast of the Agheel Lake North site of grace back in Limgrave.
SUMMON SUMMON SUMMON
With a boss as tough as The Red Wolf of Radagon, there’s absolutely no shame in summoning help. There are no NPC summons available for this fight, but you can always open your multiplayer menu and use the Furlcalling Finger Remedy item to enable you to see other players’ summon signs. And don’t forget that you can use the Tarnished’s Furled Finger item to place your own summon sign, allowing you to help other players beat the boss in their own world, while getting to practice the fight without risking your runes.
With these strategies, you should be putting down this bad dog before long. Afterward, have fun exploring the rest of Raya Lucaria before taking on the second shardbearer, Rennala, Queen of the Full Moon, and claiming your second Great Rune.