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Elden Ring: How To Beat Commander O'Neil

With a game like FromSoftware's "Elden Ring," it's all about the boss fights. The latest title from game designer Hidetaka Miyazaki pits the player against more than a hundred bosses with ultra-large health pools and complex combat animations. Some are necessary to beat to complete "Elden Ring," others are optional, but most of them offer useful rewards–not to mention hefty amounts of runes.

Commander O'Neil is a midgame boss of the optional variety, although it's still worth fighting him. In addition to the 12,000 Runes and Commander's Standard that he drops, he also drops the Unalloyed Gold Needle, a Key Item that's necessary to complete Millicent's quest line. The Commander can be found in the middle of the Swamp of Aeonia, in the eastern portion of the Caelid region. The closest Site of Grace is Inner Aeonia. The swampy area is riddled with Scarlet Rot, so it's a good idea to ride your mount, Torrent, to the destination.

As a battlefield commander, Commander O'Neil is at his most dangerous when he can summon troops to fight with him. Fortunately, the Commander himself isn't too difficult. Here's how to bring him down and add his gear to your collection.

Commander O'Neil hits hard, but fortunately he's also slow

One technique that makes this fight easier is to use Torrent. Not only is Torrent much faster and more agile than O'Neil, using him will also protect you from the Scarlet Rot that infests the ground. In general, if Torrent is available for a boss fight, use him.

Twice during the fight, O'Neil will summon spectral Exile Soldiers. When he's just about to summon, he will cast a white circle of light around himself. O'Neil starts by summoning sword-wielders and archers, and will summon ax-wielders later in the fight. While they're not especially dangerous, they can be distracting enough to disrupt you entirely. So, whenever he summons them, ignore him and focus on them. It also helps to bring your own Spectral Summons to the fight, particularly one that involves a group of allies like wolves or Marionette Soldiers. They probably won't damage O'Neil much, but they will keep him occupied.

Commander O'Neil has a wide hit range, can use combo attacks, and deals heavy damage. Fortunately, he's also slow, and it's relatively easy to anticipate his attacks. Use a hit-and-run strategy to deal one or two hits to O'Neil while he's occupied, then run away and reset for another. Repeat until his health bar hits zero.