Dark Souls revolves mainly around combat, so it's important to know how the fighting system works.
I will be covering the major parts of combat, what's important to know, and some tactics.




Dodging is possibly the most important skill in Dark Souls, it's pretty easy to learn and will save you time and time again. You dodge using a skill called dodge-roll. Which can be used by pressing on an X-Box 360 Controller or on a PS3 Controller.
There are 3 different rolling speeds, depending on how much weight you're carrying.
Fast Rolling: 0-25% Weight = Faster Rolling
Mid Rolling: 25-50% Weight = Medium Rolling
Fat Rolling: 50-100% Weight = Slow Rolling


Attacking is the second most important skill in Dark Souls. This is how you eliminate enemies and bosses. Each weapon type has a different moveset along with a strong and standard attack. Each weapon type has its own advantages and disadvantages. Find something that fits your play style.

Weapon Types

Short Swords Great Swords Ultra Greatswords
Curved Swords Curved Greatswords Thrusting Swords
Katanas Hand Axes Greataxes
Spears Halberds Gauntlets
Clubs Great Clubs Whips
Daggers Bows Crossbows

When to Attack

The best time to attack is directly after dodging or blocking an enemy's attack, when they are either in cooldown or staggered. It's important to know which attack to choose, Standard attacks (Activated by tapping on your X-box 360 or PS3 controller), are fast and safe attacks, they do mediocre damage but are much safer than Strong attacks (Activated by pressing on your X-box 360 or PS3 controller), Strong attacks do much more damage but have a long build-up and drain a lot more stamina, meaning it can be hard to avoid a counter attack. Both can be very effective with good timing, it's just important to know that timing.
Strong Attack Standard Attack


The last thing to learn about combat in Dark Souls is Healing and Stamina Management.


Healing is done by using the item Estus Flask which is gained in the first area of the game. Estus can be used by pressing on an X-Box 360 controller or on a PS3 controller. You gain 5 to 10 Estus Flasks from Bonfires (or checkpoints) you rest at. Estus Flasks can be upgraded throughout the game to gain more healing per use.


Stamina is the thing that keeps combat balanced and scary. Your stamina is a bar below your health that drains when you sprint, roll, or swing your weapon. If you run out, you cannot do any of those things. You regain stamina by walking and not attacking. It's good to keep a balance of attacking, dodging and regaining stamina. Otherwise you won't last long.