How to Beat the Elden Ring Tree Sentinel
Having trouble with the Tree Sentinel in Ring of Elden, the new game from the creators of Dark Souls? Here are some tips that will help you cut down that (sentinel) tree.
What you need to know about Tree Sentinel is that you do not do have to fight it. Yes, it’s pretty much the first enemy you’ll see after the tutorial, but it’s prowling in open terrain and it’s easy to outrun it from a good distance. He won’t see you and you won’t have to fight him. In fact, it is better do not challenge him right away; you’ll almost definitely lose unless you’re the Soulslike equivalent of that little kid who made his way through Guitar Hero on Ellen or whatever.
So yes, first tip: don’t fight this guy! At least not at first.
You’ll want to avoid this mounted warrior and invest time in powering up your character before facing him. Following the golden path in the sky that guides you forward, you will come across the Church of Elleh. It is important that you visit the site of the Church of Lost Grace, this game’s version of a soul checkpoint. Then continue through the woods, to the ruins of Gatefront. This is a good opportunity to farm runes, which you can use at a grace site to level up your character once you’re no longer maidenless. You’ll probably want to attack this camp as stealthily as possible, as there are plenty of guards here, including a few wolves; you may also have to deal with some bats, depending on the time of day. Focus on backstabbing the guards on the cliff side of the camp, as they are more spread out and easier to crawl through.
After collecting around 800 runes, head to the large gate of the castle which the path led you to. Just outside you will find a site of thanks. If you stop and think there, you will be visited by Melina, who will do two main things for you: first, she will calm down all those assholes who laugh at you for being “girlless” by offering you to be your maiden, and secondly she’ll give you a whistle (the Spectral Steed Whistle, actually) that you can use to summon Torrent, a ghost horse that’ll be your companion throughout the game. Torrent opens up a few new attack options and is also fast enough to get you past some encounters; this last skill will be useful to you right after this site of thanks. Torrent is also crucial in beating the Tree Sentinel.
If your goal is to defeat Tree Sentinel as quickly as possible, don’t go through that door yet, even after getting Torrent. Keep farming runes in the ruins of Gatefront, using them to level up, oh, a dozen or so times at this site of grace. Honestly, it’s probably best to leave the Sentinel alone until you’ve played the game for several hours and leveled up naturally before coming back to challenge it. If you’re determined to take it down, you might be ready to take on the Tree Sentinel after boosting your health and offensive skills past level 20.
When you feel ready to fight, call Torrent with the Spectral Steed Whistle. Also prepare by crafting Rowa Raisins, which restore Torrent health; you won’t want to lose your boyfriend in the middle of this melee. Ride your ghost horse back to the road that the Sentinel of Trees is guarding and get ready for a fierce fight.
Like every boss battle in Ring of Elden, you’ll need to be patient, you’ll need to search for Tree Sentinel schematics, and you’ll need to hit fast and dodge faster. If you’re a magician or have a ranged weapon, it always helps to attack from a distance before you get close enough to use a melee weapon. Once close, you’ll want to be constantly on the move; sprint, hit them, and keep moving out of range of his spear, which has an absurdly large attack range. Sometimes the Sentinel’s horse appears to crouch or kneel; when you see this, know that it is about to unleash a huge jump attack and get out of the way. You can also wield the power of the jump attack yourself, if you time Torrent’s jumps at the right time.
If you stay patient and alert, dodge the Sentinel’s attacks, and launch yours quickly before he strikes again, it’s only a matter of time before you take this guy down. You will get quite a big bounty in return; shooting down the Tree Sentinel nets you 3200 runes, a hero rune, a large Erdtree shield, and the Golden Halberd, a powerful weapon that deals Holy damage and grants you the skill Golden Vow, which briefly increases your damage to armored enemies .
Again, the Tree Sentinel is optional. You don’t need to fight it at all, and absolutely should not fight it until you’ve leveled up multiple times and acquired Torrent. Even then, combat will be tedious work, so it’s a good idea to be prepared. There are also two other Tree Sentinels in other places in the game, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to take down this jerk. Just make sure you’re ready for it whenever you decide to take on one.