Caria Manor may be an optional location in Elden Ring, but it’s one that many players will wind up tackling, since it gives access to the witch Ranni and opens up Ranni’s questline. That means getting through Royal Knight Loretta, a blue shade with powerful ranged and melee attacks. Hey, it could be worse — at least you’re not fighting an even bigger nightmare hand-spider here.
Preparing for the fight
Loretta uses a combination of ranged and close-quarters attacks, and her most powerful moves deal magic damage. With that in mind, there are some items you should make sure to grab around Limgrave and Liurnia.
Defense against the sorcerous arts
To defend against Loretta’s magic attacks, you’ll want armor with high magic resistance. The most easily accessible set is one you probably already have, if you followed our guide to defeating Rennala, Queen of the Full Moon at Raya Lucaria. That would be the Carian Knight armor set, the pieces of which boast decent physical and magic defense. If you didn’t already grab it at Raya Lucaria, you can find it near the Church of the Cuckoo site of grace. Travel 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 worshipping at the large tombstone.
Faith-based casters can purchase the Magic Fortification incantation from Brother Corhyn in the Roundtable Hold; in fact, since it only requires 10 faith to cast, even characters without much faith may find it useful. There’s also the Spelldrake Talisman, which can be looted from the boss in the Earthbore Cave dungeon on the Weeping Peninsula (southern Limgrave).
A shield for all seasons
In addition, you’ll want to use the Carian Knight Shield, which is dropped by the NPC who attacks you just before the elevator to Rennala in Raya Lucaria and boasts an impressive 71% magical damage negation. Granted, it requires 15 Intelligence to wield, so if you’re not playing as a spell-caster, you might not have the stats. However, there are ways to get around that.
For example, you can use equipment to temporarily boost certain attributes:
- Olivinus Glintstone Crown. From Raya Lucaria’s Schoolhouse Classroom site of grace, enter the next hallway and turn left, and then attack the far wall).
- Twinsage Glintstone Crown. Found by exploring Raya Lucaria’s rooftops.
Both increase Intelligence at the cost of other attributes.
Another option is Marika’s Scarseal, a talisman that increases Mind, Intelligence, Faith, and Arcane while increasing the damage you take. Find it at the base of a waterfall underground in the Siofra River area (though be warned, you’ll have to fight a Dragonkin Soldier boss).
Also keep in mind that, assuming you’ve defeated Rennala already, you can respec your character fairly easily, assuming you have found a Larval Tear.
Another alternative is to enchant any shield with the Scholar’s Shield spell (purchased from Sellen in Limgrave’s Waypoint Ruins), which will help you tank through those magic attacks while using up less stamina.
That all may be too much work just to increase your magic defense, so you might want to simply get good at dodging Loretta’s attacks instead. Your magic defense won’t come into play if she never hits you.
Learn the Loretta fight
The battle with Loretta at Carian Manor spans two phases, although they aren’t too different from one another. The main key to beating her is mastering avoiding her magic attacks — whether by dodging or blocking them — and recognizing her predictable melee patterns so you can get in close.
Alternatively, you can try to keep your distance and pelt her with magic attacks from afar. Loretta’s magic resistance isn’t as severe as Rennala’s was, so spellcasting is a viable option; furthermore, a spell like Rock Sling, which does physical damage, can be very effective against her (if you don’t have Rock Sling, find it in a chest underground in the Street of Sages Ruins in Caelid).
Faith casters, meanwhile, will have the most luck with lightning-based incantations like Lightning Spear, which you can buy from any incantation vendor after finding the Dragon Cult Prayerbook on a knight who patrols just south of the Artist’s Shack in Liurnia.
Loretta’s most common magical attack by far is the Carian Phalanx, which summons several swords around her that hurtle toward you after a short delay. In her first phase, the swords fire all at once, while in phase 2 there are more of them, and they fire in two bursts. In both cases, they’re easy to predict and simple to dodge — although complications arise when she lunges in for a close-quarters attack at the same time as the swords are headed your way. It’s still possible to dodge all her attacks in those instances, though you’ll need some measure of luck as well as skill.
Meanwhile, Loretta’s close-range attacks are fairly easy to dodge and leave you plenty of room to retaliate with attacks of your own. Her overhead slams generally have a predictable wind-up, though she often follows up with a string of further strikes, so it’s not always safe to hit back right away. The best times to use your own melee attacks are while she’s casting her phalanx spell, and after she ends a combo with either the horse-rearing attack or the heavy overhead slam.
At around 50% health, Loretta enters phase 2, and her magic attacks grow considerably more deadly. The phalanx swords are more numerous, and their delivery becomes staggered, while her singular magic missiles become clusters that can do serious damage. Some of her swipe attacks become imbued with magic damage, and she’ll occasionally pull out her magic great bow for attacks that, while easy to dodge, can one–shot you if you aren’t careful.
Luckily, these new attacks add new opportunities for retaliation. For example, Loretta has a tendency in phase 2 to spam the clustered magic missile attack your way. Once you master dodging through these, that presents a good time to close the distance and get some melee strikes in. They’re also fairly forgiving to block with your shield, especially with the Scholar’s Shield spell in play.
You still have to watch out for her close–range strikes, though, since even with the shield enchantment, they can easily break your guard. And though circling behind her is a good way to get in some safe hits during either phase, she’ll occasionally kick you with her horse’s hooves.
May I offer you a summon?
Loretta is a great example of a boss that grows significantly easier when you summon help, whether in the form of a Spirit Ash or other players, since her ranged attacks are much easier to dodge than her up–close melee strikes.
Just like with other boss fights in Elden Ring, you can use the Furlcalling Finger Remedy item to enable you to see other players’ summon signs, or use your own Tarnished’s Furled Finger item to place a summon sign down and help other players beat the boss in their own world. However, keep in mind that the more players or NPCs you summon for the fight, the more health the boss will have. That isn’t the case with ash spirit summons, so if you choose to go that route, you might actually have an easier time.
Royal Knight Loretta drops
Master dodging Loretta’s strikes, and you’ll send her riding off into the sunset in no time. Then the only thing standing between you and Ranni is — oh, right, the enormous, magic-spewing dragon in the next area. Good luck!
Defeat Royal Knight Loretta, and you’ll get a Rune Arc x1 and a Furlcalling Finger Remedy x1, as well as Loretta’s Greatbow, the Loretta’s Slash Ash of War, and 10,000 runes.