Aava, the King's Pet

HP ~9,000 (Standard Game), 12,500 (NG+)
Weakness  None
Resistance  All magic

Aava, the King's Pet is an enemy in Dark Souls 2.


Aava, the King's Pet Information 

Pet Guardian of Eleum Loyce and the Ivory King's beloved child of the Dark.
Aava is a big sabertooth-like ice tiger whose duty is to protect the path to the Grand Cathedral. She is barely visible but can be seen fully after acquiring the Eye of the Priestess. She usually rests on the way to the Grand Cathedral but becomes Hostile when the player comes too close.


  • Boss of Frozen Eleum Loyce, found just past the first bonfire. After the large door across the bridge go left and down the stairs. The entrance is immediately ahead.





Attack Name Attack Description
Homing Ice Crystals Runs farther away and roars, conjuring five Ice Crystals that launch a few seconds after at their target, every crystal tracking the player.
Getting hit knocks the player down and thus the rest of them will miss. (With high poise you might get hit by more than one)
Leaping Ice Swipe Runs farther away like with Ice Crystals. Instead of conjuring crystals she leaps at the player and swipes with her paw.
Ice Swipe Swipes the area in front of her; can chain another swipe with her other paw.
Note: If she decides to change target and swipe at the same time, she can do a 180' degree turn.
Ice Smash Smashes the ground with her paw, summoning little ice pools around her which erupt an ice spike after a few seconds.
Ice Explosion After a short charging animation she does an icy explosion, dealing damage to and knocking back everyone around her.
Bite attack She leaps away and then leaps towards you with her mouth open. If you are too close to her head when she lands, you will be sucked in her mouth and suffer heavy damage.



Melee Strategy for Aava: It is important to note that Aava is a slow boss but can take away a great deal of health if any of the hits connect. Aava is a melee-oriented boss, so a shield with good damage reduction is recommended as to soak up the majority of the damage being dealt. If you’re a dual weapon user, then it is important to have high adaptability to help you when rolling away from attacks.

Now, the first order of business is to lock-on to Aava. This is important, as all your attacks will want to be focused directly Aava. Now that you've locked on, you must ALWAYS stay near the hind legs (the back legs) as Aava will only have 3 methods of attack to get you from there: she can use ice explosion which can and will damage you if you're behind her, as well as her ice smash attack, Aava will move her body to the side that is opposite to your side and do a claw sweep that will force her to directly face you. When this happens you have three things to do (depending on your build):

If you’re a tank with a shield: Raise your shield as soon as you notice Aava moving her body slightly to the side. When she attacks, your shield will soak up the damage and you can then proceed to sprint to her hind legs once again.

If you’re a dual weapon user: Roll to the front of Aava or to the away from her. If you roll to the front, you’ll get underneath Aava ( DO. NOT. ATTACK.), just simply roll to the side and repeat the process of attack that’s already been mentioned.

If you're a mage: Use phantoms to distract her, and then proceed to stagger her with Dark Hail, Block its magic with a shield that has good Magic defenses in order to absorb the majority of the damage. It is vital that you stay at a far away range from Aava, if she begins to focus on you, it is recommended to roll through her attacks OR use a shield to block the damage she may inflict on you. Retreat to a safe position while phantoms begin to distract her.

Aava also has a long-range attack. She will summon 5 soul spears, which will all fire in rapid succession of each other towards the player. When she summons them, just move behind her and 90% of the time they miss. If you're too far away to make it behind her, sprint to the left or the right and they should all miss you.

Alternate Melee Strategy: (Used at SL138 with Throne Watcher's Armor set +2, fire-infused Heide Longsword +10 and fire-infused Blue Flame +5, Chloranthy ring +1, Fire Clutch Ring and Old Leo Ring on a STR/DEX 40 build)
--(Feel free to use any combination of dual-wielded fire-infused weapons, my setup would have been better with a Fire Longsword instead of Heide Longsword)

You will want a fire-infused weapon for this, and a shield is optional as her attacks will very easily stagger you if blocked. For this reason, dual-wielding and powerstancing with fire weapons is preferable. Lighter, faster weapons are recommended, as you will have more time to dodge after your strike. If you can use Flame Weapon, use it. If not, the only other buff that is useful is Crystal Magic Weapon: it adds both physical and magic damage, and she resists both magic and Dark damage.

First, summon the two NPCS available for the fight; they serve as meat shields and will likely die before the end of the fight. As soon as the fight starts, lock on to Aava and stay that way for the rest of the fight. While Aava concentrates on them (she always turns her head to face her target), stand far enough away that you're out of her spinning swipe range, as this should be the only move that could hit you while she isn't targeting you (other than her AoE ice spike which is easy to dodge), but close enough that you can run in for a few hits. (Using a straight sword, you may feel like you have time enough to go for 4-5 hits, but her spinning swipe has next to no warning, so stay with 2-3 hits). As soon as she finishes her combo, dash in for a few hits to her side. Quickly back away once you finish. DO NOT strike at her flank: she will begin targeting you after doing a backwards leap/leaping bite combo if you do. Only strike at her side; the left side seems the best choice. Keep this up until the NPC Phantoms die, which should happen after she is at about 1/3 health.

Once the NPC Phantoms die, Aava will begin targeting you. DO NOT STRAFE at this point. She will unleash holy hell and wreck your ass with AoEs if you do. Allow her to use her biting and clawing attacks (she typically does either 2 swipes or a bite followed by 2 swipes) while facing her head-on. Simply back away before she strikes and after the combo, strike her face 1-2 times and repeat. The only moves you need to worry about are her back jumps followed by leaping bites, which are highly telegraphed but have a deceptively wide hit-box, her leaping swipes, and her spin attacks, which have almost no warning and a lagging hit box extending ALL THE WAY TO HER OPPOSITE SHOULDER (she shouldn't use this unless you strafe). Move backwards, not to the side, to avoid both of these. When you see her leap back, DO NOT APPROACH unless she is charging her soul spears, in which case you need to run forwards and roll between her legs, hit 1-2 times, and quickly move away once the attack is finished.

Optimal healing times are while she uses her ice spike AoE, which can be triggered by attacking her hind legs (not her flank or side, but in between the two) and her spin swipe, which can be avoided once you know how to trigger it and can predict when she will use it. This should take no more than 2-3 minutes.

Video Strategy:

Solo NG+3 Black Knight Greatsword
Aava: Ranged, Sword & Board and Power Stance
Ng+ boss strategy, solo, sl1, melee, no shield just a rapier
NG+2 Shield & Murakumo strategy
NG Rapier & Bow Strategy
Solo/Melee/NG+ with Bone Fist
Solo, Caestus Only
(( Please respect these video posting guidelines))


  • Without the Eye of the Priestess the player can barely see Aava. It is possible, although very hard to see Aava's very faint outline,
  • Even with a good shield Aava will most likely drain your stamina completly after 1-2 hits (especially in NG+ and further). However the Baneful Bird Ring might be helpful and allow blocking 1 more attack, (especially for smaller shields)
  • If she has summoned her Ice Missiles, just walk to the side of Aava. Normally none of them should hit you.
  • Aava is very resistant to all magic - dark orb does 25% dmg only and the other 3 elements seems to be no better.
  • However Dark Hail is actually handy for staggering Aava.
  • Its highly recommended to get your magic resistance as close to 900 as possible to minimize damage from her spells
  • Magic Shield and Rebel's Greatshield infused with Magic makes this fight almost trivial, as both provide 100% magic damage reduction



    • Anonymous

      02 Nov 2018 18:17  

      If you got a summon or two she's really not that bad. I used my +8 Flamberge, while she kept her attention on my two summon AI friends, i just stayed behind her and used my Flamberge R2 stab attack, and just kept poking her in the butt until she died. Took a while cause i had to keep chasing her down. It's still my first playthrough on DS2 SOTFS, so i would imagine shes much much tougher solo. Really fun battle though!

      • Anonymous

        08 Jul 2018 17:29  

        The boss itself is easy. Just roll through all the melee attacks which you can see coming from a mile away. When it arches its back, back off fast to get away from the AOE. When the missile attack comes, un-lockon and sprint perpendicular to them, they will miss.

        IMPORTANT: Attacking this boss DESTROYS YOUR WEAPONS. I would of had this thing on the third attempt, but after going through my first halberd, hot swapping in a second, then having it break, I got killed trying to find another weapon in my inventory. Saw no mention of this in the article.

        • Anonymous

          03 Jul 2018 07:17  

          Took me quite a few tries ( 30+ )

          Second most next to fume knight

          In the end just had to be patient and roll lots

          Had only glencour, he died just last half aavas health

          End was a nail biter, my ten year old son was bouncing in his seat

          • Anonymous

            22 Jun 2018 05:54  

            Just beat it using santiers spear and full Havel but kept it under 70%. Back up and with the shield and poke when the leap misses. Also run behind during range attack and do sprint 2h attack. I ended up using Lifegem a but it worked.

            • Anonymous

              10 Jun 2018 04:08  

              Have 2 weapons ready, additional items to heal, possibly get the a shield ready in case you can react, use the summon.

              I can solo many bosses at SL120, i can bet brume knight a SL80 solo, but i can't beat this guy at SL130 solo. Had to use shield, additional healing and the 2 summons.

              • 03 Apr 2018 10:43  

                I'd call Aava slow. I was tanking with a shield and had lots of time to recover stamina or get behind her between attacks - especially by using the summons to draw her attention. Tried a +10 fire longsword and the damage dealt was disappointing. Switched to my standard +10 broadsword and killed her before either summon died or the sword broke. Have repair powder slotted or a 2nd weapon ready as hits deplete durability rapidly. Keep your HP topped up and watch out for the bite attack.

                • Anonymous

                  26 Mar 2018 02:36  

                  The only way I was able to kill this at Soul Level 1 (Scholar of the First Sin) was to use the Hexer's Hood, a faintstone imbued sorcerer's staff +10, the Ring of Knowledge, Southern Ritual Ring +2, the Life Ring +2, the Steel Ring Plus +2. I also stocked up on Wilted Dusk Herbs and Crimson Waters. I took a bright bug, then summoned the NPCs. I used simpleton spice to enable both Crystal Soul Spears and Soul Spears (3 of each). I tried my best to stay behind the tiger, but not too far from the other NPCs, that way I could run toward them to increase the chance of the tiger's AI switching to them when it targets me. I managed to kill it with both NPCs still alive. I tried other methods I've seen, such as using the peasant set, simpleton ring, and two handing the broadsword, etc. That didn't work in Scholar of the First Sin, as it did in the vanilla game. Aava's AI seems a bit different and the hitboxes have wider range. Even with the first method I mentioned, I died several times before pulling it off. However, each time I managed to get it down to a sliver of health, so I knew I was on the right track.

                  • Anonymous

                    24 Mar 2018 08:30  

                    Although there are a few bosses in Dark Souls series that are comparably fast (or slightly faster), Aava is not a slow boss and can leap across nearly half the boss area in an instant. There is a long wind up to certain attacks, but this by no means makes the boss slow. The melee attacks of the boss do NOT have to connect to the player's character's body to inflict heavy damage. Whether we want to call it a hit-box issue or an "AOE" effect, this fact remains.

                    • Anonymous

                      08 Mar 2018 22:03  

                      Aava is noticeably faster than the Dragonrider boss, the Last Giant, the Pursuer, Mytha, Scorpioness Najka, the Skeleton Lords, the Ruin Sentinels, the Flexile Sentry, the Lost Sinner, Freja, the Prowling Magus, the Old Iron King, etc. No reasonable person would claim it is a slow boss. Was whoever wrote that was trying to sound like an uber-gamer? Seems like a questionable observation like that should be removed as it is neither helpful or accurate.

                      • Anonymous

                        22 Feb 2018 11:24  

                        "fire weakness" comes up against the boss,forgets to use a resin,deals some damage,remembers about the resin,uses it,does less damage.

                        • Anonymous

                          20 Nov 2017 01:25  

                          First Melee strat worked liek a charm, mastadon GS +10 with fire buff, baneful bird and +10 gyrm greatshield for that 83 DR, I summoned Masterless Glencour to take the heat off me and it didn't add too much time to the fight. Ellie was no help the first time.
                          when the homeing soul mass comes at you, literally unlock and walk sideways and they won't hit you. (unless you are right under the beast) SL 151 BTW. took me 4 tries. This boss is nice and slow. stay behind, block the swings and dodge that damn mouth grab, killed me twice. fun fun.

                          • Anonymous

                            17 Nov 2017 17:39  

                            Just to add to below, the Tiger has specific move sets that she executes before running off. The best time to attack is after her initial move. Example; She swipes at you up to three times, you wait for her to finish then you attack or drink the flask. Never interrupt her motion. If she raises ice spikes, stand still. If she pulses with a blast, roll away from her. Magic spears, run toward her rear and roll(hard to pull off). I usually swing a strike from behind her after she does her thing. Rinse and repeat...

                            • Anonymous

                              17 Nov 2017 17:02  

                              I dissed this tiger last night. I was undead so i couldn't summon. Get your Strength up to 40, Int 50, Faith 30 and box him out. I only had small amounts of time to use the Estus flask, so no magic or spell uses for me. I used the fire sword +10 and danced with him. It can be done, you need the Eye of the Priestess though...

                              • Anonymous

                                15 Oct 2017 07:18  

                                If anyone is having trouble with durability against Aava, keep the Bracing Knuckle Ring on. Having the +2 version slows weapon degradation in half. I've tested it with the Ice Rapier's special attack. Normally it would've lost 10, but with the ring it will lose 5.
                                (Some clarification on percentage reduction is only by my guess, but it may need to be checked.)

                                And if you have others keeping Aava busy, some repair powder or repair sorcery (15 intelligent requirement). The repair powder may repair more base on your stats, but you just might be able to repair at least 20 with the spell. The spell has 2 uses each but requires only one slot so it's supposedly lucky that you can repair without the powder.

                                • Anonymous

                                  01 Aug 2017 06:52  

                                  I feel like there's a problem with DS2's PC port... every time I attack Aava with my halberd, it takes 10-15 durability. I broke a 70 durability weapon before it was dead, the same weapon I killed the fume knight with easily.

                                  • Anonymous

                                    09 Jul 2017 12:25  

                                    Does Aava really have low fire defence? I summoned Ellie and couldn't help but notice that her pyromancies rarely did more than 10 damage, Aava is practically immune to fire as far as I can tell.

                                    • Anonymous

                                      02 Jul 2017 23:52  

                                      Aava is the most stunningly beautiful creature in Dark Souls II. It was an egregious tragedy to end her life.

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