How to Defeat the Dung Defender in Hollow Knight

BY DREW

Drew

Writer and Storywriter

PUBLISHED 11 MONTHS AGO

In Team Cherry’s Hollow Knight, one of the main bosses the Knight will encounter in the depths of Hollownest is the Dung Defender (yup, that’s his name). Formerly known as Ogrim, he is the most loyal of the Five Great Knights of Hollownest and is known for the bad scent that he emits. The Dung Defender defends the path to Isma’s Grove (yup, he’s not defending dung). In this guide, you’ll learn the Dung Defender’s attacks, behavior, and how to defeat him.

How to Defeat the Dung Defender in Hollow Knight

Location

The Dung Defender is located in the east part of the Royal Waterways. The first time you hear him is at the entrance to his dirty domain. When you encounter him, he will mistake the Knight for a mindless husk and attack him. 

Moves

Dung Defender’s attacks consist of projectiles (which is kinda gross. You’ll understand in a sec) and attacks from underground. Here are the Dung Defender’s attacks:

  • Evade

The Dung Defender will try to evade the Knight by curling into a ball and rolling away for a short distance. This will inflict damage if he gets in contact with the Knight.

  • Dung Toss

The Dung Defender will form one ball of dung and throw it (see? Gross right?). The ball of dung will then randomly bounce around the arena in large arcs and will last for a few seconds (even if it hits the Knight) unless broken by the Knight by dealing enough damage to it.

  • Dive

The Dung Defender will dive underground and out again, like he’s swimming in water, to travel the arena. This will inflict damage if he gets in contact with the Knight.

  • Burst

The Dung Defender will dive underground but instead of going out and in again like he’s swimming, he will stay underground for a few seconds then burst out along with four balls of dung (two on both of his sides) that won’t bounce and will break once it hits the ground or the Knight.

  • Toss Combo

The Dung Defender will form and throw two balls of dung in quick succession and they will bounce around the arena for about six seconds.

  • Right after this attack, the Dung Defender may perform either of the two additional attacks:
    • Curl – The Dung Defender will curl up in a ball and bounce around the arena for a few seconds with the two balls of dung he threw.
    • Burst – The Dung Defender will perform the Burst attack
  • Zeal

After dealing a certain amount of damage to the Dung Defender, he will shout the same way as when the fight began and go into a rage mode where he will perform faster Burst attacks in quick succession. This will last for about twelve seconds and when it ends, the Dung Defender will target the Knight, dive, and perform the burst attack close to the Knight’s position. The Dung Defender will only perform this attack once.

After dealing enough damage to the Dung Defender, he will stagger and fall on his back and flail his arms and legs. He will stagger about three or more times during the whole duration of the battle.

Strategy

The key to defeating Dung Defender is by inflicting as much damage as you can without, or at least just minimal, taking damage. You can attack him while he’s forming his balls of dung for his Dung Toss attack. Just watch out for when he actually throws. Try dodging the balls of dung he throws as best as you can. It is important to note that the balls of dung cannot easily be destroyed by one hit with the Knight’s Nail but you can instantly destroy them by using Spells.

When he performs his Toss Combo attack, you can stand next to him and attack while he is forming the first ball, dash away when he throws it, step back in to attack him, and dash away again when he throws the second one.

The Knight cannot use his Nail to attack the Dung Defender while he is performing the Burst attack. However, you can perform the Desolate Dive or Descending Dark spell during this attack while he is still underground to cancel the attack and stun him for a short while. This strategy can be used to cancel Dung Defender’s Zeal attack when he performs it, as he will only use this attack once for the whole fight. You would have to time it perfectly though because of how fast this attack is. Attacking him while he is stunned will cause him to go back to his feet so you can use this time to heal or use a spell against him.

The corners of the arena can be your best friend during your fight with the Dung Defender. You can stand on corners to heal while he throws his balls of dung as it is less likely that they will hit the corners. The corners can also be a safe place to attack or heal while he is performing his Burst attack as he will always burst out of the ground close to the Knight’s position (unless of course if he will burst out right on the actual corner) and the balls of dung will bounce off the wall.

After defeating the Dung Defender, he will leave his Defender’s Crest Charm for the taking before diving underground. Then, after sitting on a Bench and coming back to the area, the Dung Defender will pop his head out of the ground and apologize for attacking him. He will also notice if the Knight already has Isma’s Tear in his possession and will then explain that his oath and duties prevent him from visiting his fellow knight’s grove.

Final Thoughts

The fight with the Dung Defender may seem a bit overwhelming because of the chaos brought about by the random bouncing of balls of dung but with enough familiarity with his attacks, you’ll be able to counter it and defeat him easily. There are lots of windows to attack and heal.

The Dung Defender’s apparent joy and silly nature (compared to the usual gloomy tone and mood of the game) paired with a great battle theme makes this battle one of the most memorable battles in the game.

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