The Absolute Radiance is undoubtedly the hardest boss in Hollow Knight. She sits at the peak of the Pantheon of Hallownest. Getting to her, on top of defeating her, is the most challenging endeavor you’ll face in the game.
If you’ve fought and defeated The Radiance from the base game, you’ll be familiar with most of Absolute Radiance’s attacks. However, don’t let your guard down. Absolute Radiance is much more agile and way stronger this time around. You’ll need to avoid all of her attacks as best as you can as she deals double damage. Her phases are also different, so you’ll need to watch out for that as well.
To know how to defeat Absolute Radiance, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with each of her phases and the attacks she uses during each one. That said, let’s begin with the first phase of the fight.
Table Of Contents
Absolute Radiance Phase 1
The first phase of the fight will remain simple. Absolute Radiance will immediately arrive right above you. She’ll use most of the attacks she has during this fight. The floor remains safe, but there are areas you can fall on in both sides.
These are the attacks she uses during this phase.
Absolute Radiance will summon outward pointing swords surrounding her phase. These will then fly forward in a straight direction. She can either do this once and summon two sets of swords in a row.
You can easily surmise which direction the swords will fly towards. Stand at a safe space that’s directly below Absolute Radiance. You can then jump and strike upwards continuously to deal damage or hit her with an Abyss Shriek.
Instead of summoning swords, Absolute Radiance can also summon bursts of lasers firing outward from around her head. Before these lasers materialize, there are beams of light that telegraph where the lasers are going to hit. That said, stay away from the light and you’ll avoid getting damaged.
You can employ the same strategy you did with the Sword Burst attack to find windows of opening to deal damage to her while she does this attack.
Absolute Radiance will occasionally summon orbs around the arena. These orbs will then fly towards you. You can lure the orbs to hit the ground instead of have them fly off-screen. You can multitask during this and hit Absolute Radiance with your nail as you’re avoiding the orbs.
At some point during this phase, Absolute Radiance will summon sets of swords to rain down from above.
Before the swords start descending, you’ll see exactly where they’ll rain down from. There are also going to be spaces in between the swords that are more than enough for you to stand on without getting hit by them.
If the positioning is right, you can stand in a safe space that’s close enough to the position of Absolute Radiance so you can deal damage to her as well.
Absolute Radiance can also have her swords travel horizontally across the arena. Similar to the Sword Rain attack, there are also spaces between the swords you can dash through to avoid getting damaged.
It’ll be trickier to deal damage to Absolute Radiance during this phase. It’s best you worry about avoiding the attack rather than dealing it when this attack happens.
Wall of Light
A wall of light will begin traveling around the arena from left to right, or vice versa. To avoid this attack, you can simply dash through them.
Absolute Radiance Phase 2
After you’ve dealt enough damage to Absolute Radiance, Phase 2 will commence. She’ll use the same attacks she used during the first phase of the fight. The only difference is that she’ll now summon spikes to protrude from the ground. The spikes will only cover half of the arena, which means you can stand on the other side safely.
Before the spikes will sprout up, beams of light will indicate where they’ll sprout from. Be sure to watch out for this.
After a few seconds, Absolute Radiance will transfer the spikes to the other side of the arena.
Take note that while all of the Absolute Radiance’s attacks deal two masks of damage, getting hit by the spike during this phase will only cost you one mask.
Absolute Radiance Phase 3
Absolute Radiance’s Phase 3 is relatively short. She’ll summon two narrower sets of spikes on both sides of the arena, which means you’ll be forced to stay in the middle. During this, Absolute Radiance will only perform the Sword Rain attack. She’ll continuously do this until the end of the phase.
Remember what you’ve learned about this attack and deal damage accordingly. After receiving enough damage, Absolute Radiance will fall to the ground.
This is the best time to heal up, as after a few moments, the next phase will commence.
Absolute Radiance Phase 4
During the fourth phase of the fight, you’ll need to abandon the ground completely. Small platforms will then appear throughout the arena. As soon as the phase begins, you’ll want to land on the most bottom platform in the middle. It’s easier to navigate around and avoid Absolute Radiance’s attacks from here.
During this phase, Absolute Radiance will do all of the attacks she’s done thus far. However, her most prominent attack during this phase is the Orbs attack. She’ll constantly fire orbs at you. What you’ll need to make sure is to lead these orbs at the bottom of the arena. Otherwise, have them hit the ground instead.
As the Absolute Radiance teleports around the arena, she’ll eventually find herself right above you. When this happens, deal as much damage as possible. If you have enough Souls, hit her with a barrage of Abyss Shrieks.
Absolute Radiance Phase 5
This phase is also known as the “climbing” phase. After you’ve dealt enough damage during phase 4, Absolute Radiance will fly upwards. You’ll then need to use the platforms to rise to her position.
During the climb, she’ll continue to fire laser beams at you. Just like her regular laser beam attack, these beams will telegraph where they’ll appear before materializing.
The position of the beams seems to track where you’re about to land rather than where you’re currently at. That said, you can trick the light by jumping upwards and away from the direction of the next platform, then dash towards the platform if the light starts to show up.
Keep doing this until you reach the very top where you’ll find Absolute Radiance waiting for you.
Absolute Radiance Phase 6
This is the final phase of this arduous boss fight. During this, there are only two small platforms left. The only attack she’ll do during this phase is the Orb attack. She’ll continuously teleport between three positions. She’ll either be on the left, at the center, or on the right.
The best thing for you to do during this phase is to do nail pogos on Absolute Radiance. That way, you’ll remain above her and you can dodge away as the orbs are homing at you. What you’ll want to do to avoid the orbs is to make sure to dodge away from them and have them fly off screen. They’ll disappear once they fly out of the arena.
You’ll only need to land a couple of hits during this phase. The best thing to remember here is to remain patient. If you need to break from pogoing, land on one of the two platforms in the arena, but waste no time in getting back. You may want a break, but Absolute Radiance will not stop firing orbs at you.
Other Things to Remember During the Absolute Radiance Fight
It’s best to use the Quick Slash charm during this fight. While it’s good for you to use your spells as much as you can here, you’ll ultimately need to rely on the speed of your melee attacks to fully overcome this fight.
As long as you’re able to familiarize yourself with her attack patterns, you’ll be able to defeat this challenging boss. The added challenge here is that you’ll also need to adjust as she changes the state of the arena with each phase.
Before you attempt to fight her again in the Pantheon of Hallownest, be sure to practice first at the Hall of Gods. Use this area to become fully familiar with her attacks.