Sir Knight Artorias was one of the four Knights of Gwyn, the commanding knights of Lord Gywn's army. Artorias had an unbendable will of steel, which both helped and fed into his hatred for dark servants the Darkwraiths of Kaathe in particular. Artorias was unmatched with a great-sword which Lord Gywn had the Wolf Ring made to help further skill with one. When in New Londo, Artorias discovered the ability of abysswalking, which gave him the name Artorias the Abysswalker and allowed him to enter the home of the Darkwraiths and the Four Kings themselves. At some not specified time in the past, when Oolacile was attacked by the Abyss, Artorias traveled to Oolacile to rescue Princess Dusk of Oolacile.
Artorias, deeply marked by the Abyss (after realizing he was losing against the Abyss), gave his shield which served as a magic aura, to protect his loyal battle-companion, Sif The Great Wolf, (which was very small at the time, compared to the time the player faces him in the present) from the Abyss and broke his own arm to prevent himself from using the Dark Hand ability. Then he was defeated by the Abyss and became Artorias of the Abyss. After that, an unknown hero (the player), who traveled to the past, killed Artorias, releasing him from his wretched state, and keeping his honor intact, because none would ever know what really happened to Artorias; he was then believed to died while facing the Abyss, instead of being defeated and corrupted to fulfill the Abyss's means. Then the hero killed the dark creatures of the Abyss and saved Sif, who was being held captive (protected by the magic aura of Artorias' Shield but unable to escape) by them. This way the player can acquire the Cleansing Shield.
He has a charge, a 3-hit Combo, a somersault attack (which can be done multiple times in succession, so be careful) , spreading something goo-like around him and his two attacks which are the ones that you must focus on: his Charging up and his second version of the somersault where he will jump high in the air and try to drop down on you with an unblockable or nearly unblockable attack. Artorias is extremely aggressive, much like Gwyn, but is using dodge-rolls as well to defend himself. All of his attacks can be blocked with a fairly nice shield quite easily (Balder Shield + 5 for example is more than enough). But when he starts emitting some kind of aura around him and charging something up, is the moment you NEED to attack him. After a few blows this attack will be interrupted, if you let him fully charge however he will emit an AoE attack and increase his damage for some time. After a few times he may be far to strong to be blocked in any way, depending on the used shield.
NG+: The charge-up which increases his damage will not last for the entire fight, but he might charge again before it has run out. Even charged though, he remains blockable, only his very high leap can be unblockable and must be avoided by walking backwards from him, otherwise he will strike behind your shield. If only attacked in uncharged state and healed when he´s at a distance makes this fight very controllable.
Always keep stamina bar over 50% at all time as none of his direct attacks are to be taken lightly and considering Artorias' extremely fast stance recovery/follow-up speed.
Completed with >75% equip load, great club +15, great-shield of Artorias, 10 estus flasks (not all used) and 2 charges of Replenishment at Soul Level 108.
- Savage Leaping Strike - Artorias howls, then leaps to the player to use him as a sheath for his sword, dealing massive damage. Can be blocked while moving sideways or avoided by rolling forward/to the side when he's about to land. Good moment to hit once.
- Stabbing Charge - Artorias dashes to the player in an attempt to pierce the player. This attacks hits twice if unblocked and unavoidable. Can be blocked/avoided. If blocked, good moment to hit safely on Artorias as he will back off if hit. If hit in the back, he will swing his sword around wildly while jumping away.
- Light Stab - Artorias will often follow with a light stab after closing up on the player with a previous attack.
- Gliding Slash - Artorias glides a short distance to slash horizontally in front of him. There is another version where Artorias rather slashes downwards after approaching with a dis-articulated upper-body motion. Can be blocked or avoided by rolling sideways. May follow with a Light Stab.
- Slashing Combo - Artorias will swing his blade 1-3 times. Commonly followed by 2-hit Hurricane Swing/Light Stab.
- 2-hit Hurricane Swing - Artorias will swing his blade for 720°, hitting the player twice in the process. Can be blocked or dodged. Used when standing near him for a long time/after he does a melee attack.
- Somersault Smashing Combo - At medium range, Artorias might do a fast somersault towards the player to heavily smash his sword downward. If it connects, might be repeated up to 2 more times while locking on the player. Dodging/blocking the first attack is vital as each strike will stagger the player/crush the player to the ground, which are very hard to avoid if having higher than 50% Burden. Not recommended to hit after avoiding the first hit since Artorias can do the same counter as the follow-up of Stabbing Charge - Can safely hit if you blocked the 4 somersaults. (he slowly regains his stance after the last smash)
- Oozing Darkness - If standing behind Artorias for too long, he will throw sludge at the player with a backhand swing of his free hand. Medium-ranged, can be blocked or avoided with a back roll.
- One with the Abyss - after chopping off close to 1/8 of his HP, Artorias will gather Darkness around him to unleash a violent AoE explosion while giving him a damage buff and a trail of harmless Darkness will float behind him. He can stack the buff if he does it again before it runs out and the explosion has a medium-sized AoE. The explosion can be avoided/blocked and the whole attack can be interrupted by hitting Artorias 3-4 times before the explosion. (it is recommended to use at least a medium speed weapon, such as an axe, an Halberd or a Great-sword, or faster weapons) However, it is better to interrupt the buff as it may be troublesome to deal with Artorias when a buffed
- Savage Leaping Strike - Might drain a whole HP bar/stamina bar, even with Havel's Great-shield. Interrupting is quite easy and makes the fight end faster as there is rarely another situation where the player can strike Artorias safely more than once.