Flame Lizard (Flame Salamander)

HP NG: 3,325
NG+: 5,678
NG+7: 11,100
Weakness Magic, Poison, Plunging Attacks
Resistance Impervious to fire
Respawns Yes

Flame Lizard (Flame Salamander) is an enemy in Dark Souls 2. They are first encountered in a tunnel found by jumping off a ledge near Cardinal Tower bonfire. 


Flame Lizard (Flame Salamander) Information

"Fire Salamanders are lizard-like in appearance, and possess the frog-like ability to engorge their vocal sacs with hot air from their lungs
Fire Salamanders are impervious to fire, have high HP, and move swiftly. They deal great damage by spewing fireballs, tongue lashing, and thrashing
Fire salamanders' physical attacks consume great amounts of stamina to block, and some may outright crush players even with their shields up
Poison is recommended to whittle down Salamander HP, and their tongue lashes are relatively easy to dodge by rolling.

 They can be seen again in Memory of the Old Iron King as regular enemies and Iron Passage as statues.

Location Note: see Forest of Fallen Giants, Flame Lizard Pit for details on this tricky-to-access area. 




Strategy Tips

  • General: The two in the pit under Cardinal Tower bonfire can be sniped. They are high hp, so it can take a while. For the ones in the lair, try luring them back to the lair entry-way. At some point, they'll start to back off, and you can get good hits in. Rinse and repeat for easy Soul Farming. Contains a weak spot on their underside just above what would be their collarbone. When hit, it pretty much doubles the damage it takes.
  • Ranged: Can be defeated with ease at range using arrows, first from the ladder at cardinal bonfire, second from the fire tunnel, just open the door beside the chest with fire longsword, move back to near the start of the tunnel and use box, his fire attack will hit the door, the third is at the door beside the last giant boss fight stay by the door and use arrows, the last is by the hill out of the fire cave, a spot can be found where he cannot hit you with fire but you can hit him with arrows.
  • Casters: It is possible kill the salamander in Forest of the Fallen Giants with sorceries and the binoculars, 30 - 20 hits of Soul Arrow is more than 1000 HP.

Move Set

  • Head Butt: Can do this multiple times in a row; try dodging
    • Physical Damage
    • Cannot be blocked
  • Body Sweep: Similar to head butt, but happens when you're next to it, trying to strafe.
    • Physical Damage
    • Cannot be blocked
  • Lunge: lunges forward and can fly across the cave. The attack still has active frames even after the Salamander physically stops and loses his momentum.
    • Physical Damage
    • Cannot be blocked
  • Three Fire Ball
    • Fire Damage
    • Can be blocked
  • Tongue Sweep
    • Physical Damage
    • Can be blocked
  • Tongue Stab Ball
    • Physical Damage
    • Can be blocked



  • The first salamander can be killed very early in the game, respawning 12 times, and makes for big cash early on. Slide down the ladder from the bonfire and cast any soul arrow at the salamander in the pit below. Locking on works regardless of the distance here. Finish with a few throwing knives or arrows if you didn't kill him with casts.
  • The second salamander cant be locked onto and fired on safely with casts due to the step forward casting takes, and it wastes alot of your reward to use arrows here, so wait til you can make the jump to the pile of rubbish by the big opening to the outside, with falling gear or high hp, before taking on this second one. Walk up above his hole and cast at range.
  • The third salamander inside the pit below can be safely lured to the low-hanging rock on the right side of the top of the tunnel leading down by kiting them as you walk under the overhang, keep kiting them under the overhang and they wont be able to walk past it, making for an easy kill. Also a great way to learn how kiting works early on in the game
  • The fourth salamander can be kited same as the 3rd above, or drawn to the locked door requiring the Iron key and killed safely from the narrow passage leading down to the door, which is too narrow for his head
  • If a plunge attack hits the top of a Flame Lizards head with certain weapons, it will activate a unique critical attack animation.


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    • Anonymous

      06 Sep 2021 23:07  

      This enemy is the perfect example of bad IA design, artificial difficulty and not tested, all of that made fighting one of whis lizards very unfairm i got perma stunlok with the headbutt attack and insta killed by the flamethrower because the character get up when the fire passed again on them.

      • Anonymous

        29 Aug 2021 05:49  

        Why do these guys carry around a few square miles of invisible walls strapped to their heads? They turn 10 degrees and I'm sent sliding into a corner where the camera proceeds to do the unholiest breakdance conceived by my mortal eyes

        • Anonymous

          05 Mar 2021 04:59  

          Y'know, I don't like crying to enemies or bosses, everything has a fair flaw or strategy to face it... but these things... at distance? they burn your ass, at close range? unpredictable attacks that are impossible to escape or block, hell, their spins are light-speed. It's cheese or getting cheesed

          • Anonymous

            19 Feb 2021 06:31  

            The only way I ever managed to melee these, is by ledging myself between their legs in a peculiar way, and spinning together with them at around 2-5 full rotations between attacks then hitting them once or twice while they spitballed.

            May cause dizziness.

            • Anonymous

              12 Jan 2021 03:24  

              So I just had one of the lizards do a move I've never seen before. It did a wide reaching flamethrower attack that caused a burning status while I was on the ground. Performed by the lizard guarding the Rebel's greatshield and dlc key.

              • Anonymous

                08 Jan 2021 12:57  

                every dark souls game has a stupidly hard 4 legged encounter;
                DS1: The optional cats near sif
                DS2: Salamander pit
                DS3: The two pontiff beasts (which really is nowhere near as bad as the others)

                • Anonymous

                  16 Sep 2020 11:17  

                  Screw these things, yet another cheap enemy. Their fireball locks on to the player as if they were turrets and they're able to quickly adjust their position when you are out of sight and cannot be out run. Also what's with the high hp??? No way should they be this annoying this early.

                  • Anonymous

                    11 Jul 2020 07:58  

                    If you're struggling against the ones that only spit fireballs, use this tactic: get up close, let them face you and start the attack, roll to the right on the first one, roll again on the second one, the third one will always be in the same direction as the second one, so attack it while it's attacking and recovering. Repeat this until you kill it, and be careful to not get stuck in the corner against the one that blocks the cave entrance.

                    • Anonymous

                      26 May 2020 20:18  

                      This is the most childish and obnoxious enemy in all of dark souls. Literally no way to deal with these guys with melee at all, they hitbox everywhere amd cant even be blocked. Only way to deal with them is just cheese with arrows. But whatever, act like a baby get treated like one.

                      • Anonymous

                        29 Apr 2020 20:42  

                        New to DS2, but I'm basically most of the way through the game. I thought I was doing something obviously stupid, good to see based on all the comments that the enemies are just flat bull*****

                        • Anonymous

                          18 Apr 2020 22:32  

                          Melee Guide posed by u/Wowgreatmovie1 on r/DarkSouls2 Don't know if there already is a "guide", but i wanted to give my observation that i gathered after fighting these things for hours last night. I do not recommend fighting them even with knowing their moveset and weaknesses. Their cheap attacks are a real pain in the ass. If you really want to kill them, do it ranged, please. Do no suffer the same fate as me. Useful information: Their tails are just fashion. They don't have a tail attack. The tails also can't be damaged and they don't count to the main bodys hitbox. Okay, here we go: The two salamanders behind the iron door have 7 different attacks: 1; The classic triple fireball. They will not use it unless you're far away from them. This one hits hard, is incredibly accurate, has a large aoe and a fast fire rate too. Dodge dodge dodge from afar, and circle up close on the lizards side. 2; The fire breath. Rarely used, but incredibly lethal up close, because they can turn around in half a second while doing the attack and it's a one-hit. When you see their throats getting loaded up, run out of their range. Also, the fire breaths range is longer than it shows, the flames disappear, but they can still damage you and travel invisible further. So keep a big distance. 3; A 180 degree tongue lick. Probably the easiest to dodge and it leaves him a bit open for 1-2 strikes. 4; A straight tongue shot. Second easiest to dodge, because it's his attack with the least amount of hitbox overall, but when you're exactly before his mouth, almost undodgeable. The tongues hitbox is about 3x as large as it really shows. Seriously, i've stood where their side head pieces end, and it still got me even though there was no connection between their mouth/tongue and my character. 5; A 180 degree head swing, a bit like the previously mentioned 180 degree tongue lick. Unpredictable and fast, but doesn't have the range of the tongue lick. 6; The flying stomach slam. This one is the easiest to predict, because you can see their stomach and feet getting ready when they're about to jump. DON'T grab onto their bodies when they do it, get a bit away, because the hitbox of the attack is horrendous. Every area of their body you touch will damage you (the tail is the only safe part). Yes, they jump away from you, while you are behind them and they hit you. Makes no sense and is exactly why they are so hard, because of ridiculous cheap attacks like this. Also, after the land, don't instantly grab onto their body again, the attack hasn't instantly ended when they land, they can still damage you while they are lying on their stomach and standing up. It's safe again when their legs are positioned normally again. 7; Now the last and most dangerous move: The "Forward walk". Absolutely unpredictable, because it's hilariously fast. Even if you're on the side or behind them, they will start this attack, turn to you around in less than half a second and damage you. The cheapest attack in the whole game, if not all soulsborne games. Every other attack of the fire salamanders has a counter or is somehow predictable, except this one. Doesn't matter where you stand, where and how you dodge, when they spam this move you're dead and you can't do anything against it. First off, fight always against one, that should be obvious. The two on the upper level of the pit only have the triple fireball attack, which makes them much easier. The only real problem is getting close to them. Sprint, dodge, jump, get somehow on their side legs and keep circling around, they can't reach you there. Circle around and regenerate stamina while they shoot, attack when they load up. Easy. Now to the real threat. The melee ones, how's the tactic to defeat them? We start at the iron door, where we sprint to the one at the left side of the cave/pit. STAY on this side and don't try to go after the salamander when he makes a stomach slam to the other side. Wait for him to come back, but don't stay too far away or he will start doing the triple fireball attack. Now, the trick is: Stay on his lower right leg (From our characters perspective, the left leg, next to his tail). That is the "safezone". Attack when he ends an attack of his, and don't get greedy. 1 heavy attack with a fast weapon or 1 light attack with a slow weapon. They don't rest long after an attack. Also, when you see an attack of theirs starting, NEVER press against their body. It could be either a stomach slam or a forward walk, which have a whole body hitbox. When they do a stomach slam, chase their path, but don't grab their bodies after they land, wait next to their tail until they positioned themselves again. Of course, if you have a weapon with a good range like a spear, you can get an attack in while they stand up. Keep circling around and NEVER leave this safezone. Sprint and dodge forward "into them" and a bit to the left side, so you don't touch their body. 3 of their melee attacks are useless here. That's mostly it. Hope that they use the forward walk as rarely as possible. They have everything. Their attacks are unpredictable, fast and spammy. Their movement is incredibly fast for their body size. They can make a 360 turn in half a second. Their range and aoe is crazy high. They don't rest long after an attack. They have ranged attacks. Their health and damage is disgusting, which is even worse in NG+'s. Well, hope that for those that do want to try melee them this helps.

                          • Anonymous

                            21 Feb 2020 22:08  

                            There is also a glitch associated with the flame salamander. When killed right before using the side to side fire breath attack (a move I noticed has been forgotten on the move list) it fades away but there's a continuous explosion coming from the place where it dies for the remainder of time it would've taken for it to have finished the attack. Sounds like the explosion from its fire ball attack except rapid fire and can easily destroy you if you're in range. Here's a rather poor quality video documenting it:

                            • Anonymous

                              13 Feb 2020 20:29  

                              There is also a glitch associated with the flame salamander. When killed right before using the side to side fire breath attack (a move I noticed has been forgotten on the move list) it fades away but there's a continuous explosion coming from the place where it dies for the remainder of time it would've taken for it to have finished the attack. Sounds like the explosion from its fire ball attack except rapid fire and can easily destroy you if you're in range. There's a rather poor quality video posted on YouTube documenting this if you search for flame salamander glitch.

                              • Anonymous

                                14 Oct 2019 02:23  

                                The worst "animation" I've seen on an enemy in a Dark Souls game. Second to none. Not even Falconers or those poor Alonne Knights when you see them from afar.

                                • Anonymous

                                  23 Jul 2019 19:51  

                                  Similar to the SotFS Falconers, the lack of animation paired with the absurd tenacity of their character lock makes Flame Salamanders look INCREDIBLY stupid when they spin in place with their nose glued directly to your frantically strafing crotch. Just one of the dumbest looking and badly designed monsters in gaming history.

                                  • Anonymous

                                    18 Jul 2019 21:14  

                                    I've gotten plenty of Fireball and Fire Orb pyromancies to drop from them in the pit. But never Great Fireball. Not even once, and I have farmed the hell out of that location multiple times. Sorry, I don't buy it.

                                    • Anonymous

                                      05 Jul 2019 10:50  

                                      If you use the iron key to open the door down near where the boss is, you can then summon Luet from just outside the boss room and use him to tank the salamanders while you hack them from the rear.

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