Hollow Knight: How to Beat False Knight


Randrew Mendrico

Writer and Storywriter

Drew is one of the game guide writers in PlayerAssist. He mixed his communications degree with his love for video games to help other gamers with different video game situations. Drew loves action-adventure, story or character driven role-playing games.


The False Knight is the first main boss in Team Cherry’s Metroidvania game, Hollow Knight. The False Knight can be a tough challenge for many players, especially if they are new to the game. However, it is possible to defeat the False Knight with a bit of strategy and a lot of patience.

Hollow Knight: How to Beat False Knight

This guide will review tips and tricks to help the player beat this boss and progress in the game. So, let’s get started and learn how to beat the False Knight in Hollow Knight!

Who is the False Knight?

False Knight is one of the main bosses in Hollow Knight. This boss is situated in the Forgotten Crossroads, the first major area players explore. The False Knight is a massive, armored creature who wields a mace-like object and wears a beetle-shaped helmet.

This main boss is one of the game’s earliest and most basic boss fights. The False Knight is part of the introductory segment of the game that teaches players the basics of combat and movement. However, despite its basic role, False Knight’s backstory is deeply intertwined with the lore of Hallownest, the kingdom in the game’s fictional world. 

The False Knight is a Maggot wearing the armor of one of the Five Great Knights of Hallownest, Hegemol. This Great Knight is called the “Mighty Hegemol” by Nailmaster Sheo. Hegemol had a large figure but was soft-spoken. The Mighty Hegemol’s current location is largely unknown.

The Maggot stole Hegemol’s armor to protect his siblings, who live in a ruined storeroom in the middle of the Forgotten Crossroads area. According to in-game lore, Hegemol was sleeping in his armored shell when the Maggot discovered it and stole it for himself, expecting the tremendous strength that donning the armor appeared to offer, and became the False Knight. Eventually, the False Knight succumbed to the Infection’s control.

False Knight is a tragic figure, a protector that fell to dark forces plaguing the kingdom of Hallownest. His boss fight is a challenging introduction to the world of Hollow Knight, and his tragic story adds depth and complexity to the game’s narrative.


The False Knight can be found in the upper half of a large room near the middle of the Forgotten Crossroads.

As mentioned above, the False Knight is the first main boss and part of the introductory segment that teaches the game’s combat basics. So, there are no required Spells or Abilities for the Knight to face the False Knight.

However, on their way to the False Knight, the Knight will encounter the following foes: a Leaping Husk, a Husk Hornhead, Tiktiks, Crawlids, Gruzzers, Goams, Vengeflies, Aspid Hunters, Husk Bullies, and a Husk Guard.

To face the False Knight, this is what the Knight must do:

  1. Start from the Bench up in Dirtmouth, head to the right, then drop down the well to enter the Forgotten Crossroads.
  2. Next, go to the left, where the Knight will face a Tiktik and a Crawlid. Then take the exit at the end of the room.
  3. After that, the Knight is in a large room filled with several Gruzzers and Tiktiks. Go down to the bottom of the room using platforms in the middle. The Knight can defeat or just evade the Gruzzers and Tiktiks along the way. At the bottom, drop down the exit in the middle of the floor.
  4. Then, drop down on the right, go through the gap in the middle of the floor, and head to the right. Drop down this platform, and drop down the gap on the right to land on a small platform. Then, head down using the small platforms to reach the floor on the right side of the room. At the bottom, go to the right to exit.
  5. Next, go to the right, drop down the platforms, continue to the right, and jump across the gap to get to a small platform. Here, the Knight will encounter an Aspid Hunter. Drop down to the floor below on the right and go to the right to exit.
  6. Afterward, go to the right, jump across the gap, continue to the right, and drop down the platforms on the right, where the Knight finds a couple of Goams. Wait for the Goam to retract, jump across its path, wait for the other Goam to retract, jump across the gap, wait for the other Goam to retract, and jump across. Here, the Knight will find a Vengefly. Jump across the spikes towards the platform on the right. Then jump up the platform where there is another Goam. Wait for it to retract, jump up the platform on the right, and take the exit.
  7. Then, go to the right, where there are three Vengeflies, and continue heading to the right, where there are more Goams. Wait for the Goam to burrow, jump across, wait for the next Goam to burrow, jump across, wait for the next horizontal Goam to retract, then jump up the platform on the right. Drop down the gap on the right and head for the exit.
  8. Next, jump towards the small platform on the right, jump towards another platform above on the right, then head to the exit above.
  9. After that, head up to the platforms on the left and the large platform on the right, where there is a Tiktik and a Vengefly. Head up the small platform above, jump to the ledge on the right, head up the platform above, then jump up the large platform on the left where there is another Tiktik. Go to the left, jump across the gap to the platform on the left, and exit the room.
  10. Then, head down to the platforms on the left, where there is a Husk Guard. Go to the left, where there are two Husk Bullies and a Leaping Husk. Take the exit at the end of the path.
  11. Next, go to the left, head up to the next small platform above, and head up to the three platforms above on the right. Go to the right, head up the platforms above on the left, go to the right, and the Knight will be in a huge room with two Husk Bullies and a Husk Hornhead.
  12. Lastly, try to exit the area on the left, and the gates will drop down and trap the Knight. Immediately after that, the False Knight will enter to fight the Knight!

How to Beat False Knight: Attacks

The False Knight will perform the following moves:

  • Leap – The False Knight will leap into the air to move about the arena or prepare for the Slam assault. This boss will not jump twice in a row or utilize this ability in the third phase of the battle.
  • Slam – This boss will prepare his mace, swing it, and crash it on the ground. This will cause a shockwave to ripple across the arena. The Slam attack will force barrels to fall from above during the next phases of the fight, and the number of barrels will increase in later phases.
  • Charge – If the Knight is too far away, the False Knight will run a short distance toward the Knight. This attack may deal contact damage. The False Knight will use the Leaping Bludgeon attack at the end of the Charge attack.
  • Leaping Bludgeon – The False Knight may smash his mace down after executing the Leap attack, targeting where the Knight was when the False Knight began the Leap attack. In the third phase of the battle, the attack will also force barrels to fall.
  • Rage – This boss will stagger and reveal the Maggot beneath his armor if enough damage is dealt to it. After taking enough damage, the Maggot will re-enter the armor and unleash the Rage attack. The False Knight will jump to the center of the arena and smash his mace on his left and right for around three seconds. Every time the mace strikes the ground, barrels fall from the ceiling. If False Knight is left alone for an extended amount of time, if it is staggered, he will get back up and start his normal attacks without using the Rage attack.

How to Beat False Knight: Tips

After delivering sufficient damage to the False Knight, it will stagger shortly before the fight enters Phase 2. Here, the Maggot’s garbled speech is now audible with each assault. Additionally, barrels will drop while the False Knight performs the Slam attack in this phase.

After doing sufficient damage, False Knight will stagger once more, and the fight will start Phase 3. In this phase, barrels will drop after the Leaping Bludgeon attack and even more after the Slam attack.

The Knight can stagger the False Knight when the Maggot’s head pops out. The Knight can use Focus to heal before attacking the Maggot to continue dealing damage. Because hitting the False Knight’s armor does not generate Soul, attacking the Maggot is now the Knight’s chance to gain Soul

As a result, preserve the Knight’s Soul by not utilizing Spells and just using them for healing. To counter this, the Knight can equip the Grubsong Charm, which causes the Knight to acquire Soul anytime it is hit by enemy attacks. However, that charm is easier to obtain later in the game.

The dropping barrels do not damage the False Knight’s armor, but the Knight can hit them to redirect them. When aimed correctly, these barrels can inflict damage to the False Knight.

After the False Knight’s first Rage attack, a part of the wall above the gate on the left will become breakable. This allows the Knight to exit the fight. However, leaving and then returning will restart the fight.

The False Knight will stagger three times so that the Maggot will stick its head out three times. After its last stagger, it will perform a last Rage attack. The arena floor will then collapse, and the False Knight will fall to the space below. The Knight can then descend the pit to pursue the False Knight. The Knight can keep attacking the Maggot’s head on the lower level until the battle ends.

After defeating the False Knight, the Maggot will fall from the armor and drop something bright. Inspect the shimmering item, and the Knight will acquire the City Crest. The Knight can use the City Crest to open the path to the capital of Hallownest, the City of Tears.


The battle against False Knight, like every other boss in Hollow Knight, requires patience and perseverance. It is imperative to keep calm and learn from mistakes. As previously mentioned, the battle against False Knight is simply a taste of the battles the Knight will face. Some are easier, but some are most definitely harder. Beating the False Knight is only a small step to discovering the world of Hallownest and its story.

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