Shadow of Yharnam

hp.jpg blood_echoes.jpg Location Drops
2046 / 2602 / 3645 20460 Forbidden Woods Blood Rapture
Defenses (Sword/Candle/Mage)
physical_DEF.jpg VS_blunt.jpg VS_thrust.jpg --
89 (all) 89 (all) 89 (all) --
blood_DEF.jpg arcane_DEF.jpg fire_atk.jpg bolt_DEF.jpg
89/89/89 60/60/160 90/100/90 68/68 /160
slow_poison_RES.jpg rapid_poison_RES.jpg VS_beasts.jpg VS_kin.jpg
200 (all) 180 (all) No No

Shadow of Yharnam (ヤーナムの影 Yānamu no kage lit. "Shadow of Yharnam") is a Boss in Bloodborne.


Shadow of Yharnam Information

  • You gain 0 Insight for finding the boss and 2 Insight for beating it.
  • If left alive too long, all 3 will transform, plus gaining the summoning ability.
  • With Impurity rune equipped, you can summon Younger Madaras Twin. The summon spot is near the place where you'd find Clockwise Metamorphosis rune.
  • If killed, Henryk can be summoned for this fight. Summon him at the fork just before the Forbidden Grave using Old Hunter Bell. If Henryk has not been killed, Younger Madaras Twin will be summoned instead.
  • Make use of obstacles such as the huge rock/grave to separate them temporarily. Fighting all three at once is disadvantageous. Obstacles(tall ones) can also give you cover from fire spells.





  • Blood Echoes NG (20,460), NG+ (97,948), NG++ (107,743), NG+3 (122,435), NG+4 (146,922), NG+6 and so on (244,869)
  • Blood Rapture


Combat Information

  • Strong against Arcane damage.
  • There are three Shadows in this fight. The first wields only a scimitar weapon in his left hand, the second a scimitar and a candle which acts in a similar fashion to the Flamesprayer, the third holds a flame in hand similar to the pyromancy flame from Dark Souls.
    • Dont let them swarm you, move around, take cover in obstacles, lure the melee, charge the mage if no one is near him...etc
    • When one Shadow has been damaged below the 40% threshold, they will all transform gaining additional abilities.(phase 2)
    • When 2 are dead, or 1 is dead and the remaining reached 30% health, the survivors will gain the ability to summon giant snakes that generally kill you in 1 hit.(phase 3)
  • They will not heal between stages, so it is recommended getting them all close to 30% HP before letting them transform, then during the second phase, get them both close to death, and you can then finish the last one off right after the second, essentially skipping the third phase.
  • All three of the Shadows can be parried. After you kill the fully melee one, the second one starts swinging his own sword, leaving him open to parries and when you get close to the fire throwing one, he switches to physical attacks, which can all be parried.
  • The Shaman Bone Blade works on them allowing you to easily kill them off.
  • Especially weak against Bolt - Tonitrus or Bolt Paper makes this fight much easier.
  • Summoing an NPC hunter helps a lot - the two melees will generally focus on the NPC, letting you stun lock the mage. Finish him quickly, or the NPC may be killed before you can help him with the other two.

During the first phase, the first and second Shadows will be extremely aggressive and chase you around while the third will fire soft-homing fireballs at you that come in waves of three. This puts you in a very evasive position and the obvious course of action is to kill the third ASAP. The third tends to hang back from you compared to the others, leading the first and second away from the third is recommended. Obstacles throughout the arena are useful for stalling the aggressive pair's movement. When the third becomes isolated, charge at him and beat him down, but watch out, because the other two will be on you again quickly. The first is the most aggressive, but that doesn't mean you can ignore the second. The second will occasionally blow on his candle and unleash a flame in a wide arc that tracks you. If you're caught in the middle of it you're likely to die, but if you can get away from it you should survive just fine.

After you've done enough damage to kill one of them (you don't actually need to kill one of them, but just do enough damage between the three that one would be dead if all that damage was stacked on them), the Shadows reveal their inhuman nature. Their movesets change at this point, becoming rather bizarre; they can stretch their limbs at odd angles. You'll find that this increases their range immensely. If you put too much distance between yourself and the two melee Shadows, they'll hit you with melee attacks with a near unlimited range. There's very little wind up to these attacks, meaning that you've got an incredibly narrow window to dodge. If they land one of these attacks they can take off significant amounts of health.

At this point the second will light his scimitar on fire, if you attack him during this animation and manage to stagger him, you can prevent this weapon buff. The third will occasionally shoot the fireballs up in an arc rather than fire them in a wave now, where the fireballs land will leave a patch of fire. Otherwise, the second phase is largely the same. After killing the third, focus your attention on killing the first Shadow, as it is more aggressive. Use the obstacles in the area to separate the two remaining Shadows, but be careful - when the Shadows stretch their limbs for their attacks, it seems they can clip through the obstacles.

After killing your second shadow, the remaining shadow gains an extra ability; a new "summoning" ability wherein he will pause for a moment, become enveloped in a crimson aura, and cause several ENORMOUS serpents to rise from the surrounding mire and attack you. It doesn't matter which Shadow is left alive, all three are capable of this attack when they're on their own. In practice, they're not so much enemies as an attack unto themselves, as they'll eventually go away. Their range covers pretty much the entire arena, so keep on your toes. If you're feeling brave, when the Shadow gets down on his knees to summon you can sprint in and land a couple of hits. You can interrupt this summoning process if you can get enough hits in quickly enough which will stop the snakes appearing.

If you're having trouble with the snake spawns in the last phase, try to leave the third Shadow until last and then stay right on top of him attacking constantly. It takes a second for his fireball to wind up so you can interrupt it and if he's being hit he won't stop to summon the giant snakes. The only thing to look out for is his occasional mace attack.

Attacks and Counters

Attack Name Attack Description & Counter
Phase 1 Mage (Mace & Fireball)
Homing Fireball The Mage Shadow casts out 3 fireballs that will home in on your location. This attack is easily dodged, or you can use the terrain to your advantage.
Phase 1 Candle
Fire Breath (Candle) The Shadow holding the candle will periodically blow fire in your general direction. Keeping your distance is good. Bait the attack out and keep distance until the fire is done spewing. Dodging to the side will help.
Phase 1 Sword
Upward Swing Swift close-range launcher used in combos and on its own; counter, or quickstep forward or backward.
Running Slash Mid-range running knockdown attack; counter, or quickstep sideways or forward through them.
Phase 2 Sword
Whip Thrust Long-range forward thrust with slightly delayed startup; counter, or quickstep sideways
Whip Uppercut Identical to the Upward Slash, except slightly delayed startup and long-range; counter or quickstep any direction.
Phase 2 Mage
Triple Raining Fireball Throws three arcing mid-range fireballs that converge on your location and create large spherical explosions; quickstep backward or forward.
Phase 3 All
Snake Summon Summons three giant snakes that perform long-range strikes or mid-range sweeping bites depending on their distance from you. Snakes appear in random locations; keep moving and roll in any direction when attacked.


Strategy 1 (Hunter Axe with Pistol - Physical build)

  • initially kite the bosses, until fire tossing boss is out of Line of Sight. preferably use the big grave stone to the right of the entrance. the one with katana is extremely easy to counter with the pistol. 3-4 counters will drop him to low enough health for him to transform.
  • when he is transforming, DO NOT BACK OFF, dash in and finish him off ASAP, the katana one is very very annoying in the snake form, and becomes less aggressive overall.
  • next kill the scythe one.
  • lastly the fire one is really easy.


Strategy 2 (Happy Feet)

This strategy makes the fight trivial. Focus the fast katana user first, and kite around the fire mage. Use obstacles in the arena to block his fireballs. Once the first katana user is dead, there will be two left. The now snake bellied fire caster, using AoE bursts of flame (simply avoid the areas he's shooting), and the one with the flaming katana. The one with the flaming katana is promptly named "Happy Feet," because he does nothing but sidestep you. This has happened to me twice now, both NG and NG+, and I'm not sure if it's supposed to happen, but all he does is sidestep you. You can pin him in to a corner, or just laugh at him, but all he does is dodge sideways. To finish the fight, simply pin him in a corner and attack him to death, he will not ever attack. For both fights I used Ludwig's Holy Sword in greatsword form. After happy feet is dead, the fire caster will pull out an Tonitrus without any lightning buff, and poorly try and hit you with it. It does some damage, so watch out, but nothing to stress about, as he is very slow and short range.
(This seems to only have happened due to a bug where enemy AI would become extremely simple if the game was left on for too long. It no longer happens, and the AI will attack as normal on current patches.)

Strategy 3 (AI)

The fight is tough, especially on NG+ but don't give up. This strategy involves killing the caster first. This seems obvious but the strategy begins to work once it is dead. I chose to wear high fire resist armor for the times I made mistakes. Anyways once the caster is dead, next start to work on the katana only boss. The trick for the 2nd phase is to keep both bosses in line of sight and keeping a certain distance. Once you find the distance they seem to become incredibly predictable. This strategy is designed to take away the advantage the boss has which, at this point is 2 AI threads running independently. If you properly distance yourself you can bait the katana wielder to do a normal melee attack while the other breathes fire. Once you get in this rhythm you can start to parry the katana wileder consistently. The AI may to do some weird things so pay attention during this second phase cause it isn't guaranteed to keep them from doing something random. The idea is to get as many V-attacks on the katana wielder. This will mitigate the damage you take by giving you i-frames and healing you if you use the proper rune. Also if you wear the Charred set, the damage the candle boss will do is reduced. If you can get through this second phase you should be in great shape for the last phase.

The last phase should be simple. Stay aggressive and bait attacks to push the last boss into a corner. As long as you keep stamina and consistent Damage you shouldn't have a problem.

Strategy 4 (New Game +)

This is a very tough fight on New Game+. Prepare to die, and be very patient. Focus only on one at a time. Out of the three the most annoying one is the fire caster. Focus on him first, and kill him as fast as possible. Use the giant tomb stones, and the little ones as cover perpetually so you can draw the two swordsmen away from the fire caster. Once you get him low enough they will all transform. That's when you kill him as fast as possible and start focusing on the other two. Next one to kill is the one with the katana. This one is also very annoying. Since he is already transformed he will have long range sweeps and a uppercut thrust which deals a lot of damage. Just keep circling and use the tombstones as cover again. Use the Hunter Axe in trick form to do a sweep attack knocking them back repeatedly over and over. If you can use your pistol to counter him when he is in the middle of an attack, this will make it go by a lot faster. Once you have killed the Katana wielder rush to the last guy and do not let him breathe. Continuously attack him because he can summon snakes at this point which will kill you in one hit. DO NOT LET THAT HAPPEN. Keep on him and you will find success.

Strategy 5 (Waste of Skin, level 4)

The hardest boss battle in level 4 run can be made somewhat easier if you know what you are doing. First you have to prepare for the fight. You need two important things. Shaman Bone Blade (Brainsucker near Alfred NPC and the Forest entrance drops those) and piece of tape or some object to put in front of your TV to mark the exact place in the healthbars that triggers the phase two. Damaging the shadows in phase one is much easier than in phase two so getting the melee Shadow and the Mage as low health as possible before triggering the phase two is essential. Once those two are in low health (like 33%) and the next swing would trigger the phase two get the Shaman Bone Blade ready. Trigger the second phase by attacking and when the Shadows are transforming hit either the Katana or Mage with the Shaman Bone Blade. This way Shadows will fight each other and with luck kill the Bone Bladed one so you only have to worry about the last remaining two. I recommend to kill the melee Shadow with Bone Blade since the Mage has lesser health pool and is maybe easier to finish off later. Try to trigger the Candle Shadows fire breath attack and then run to the low health Shadow. Either kill him by attacking or use another Shaman Bone Blade if you can. After the second one is down just run to the last one, swing once and walk forward to create the famous loop strat.


Strategy 6 ( bloody hunter )


Have bloodtinge of 30 or higher ten bone marrow ash an Evelyn pistol 20 blood vials 20 bullets and any weapon that's +6 to +10. Find the one shadow you just hate with your whole heart, use your bone marrow ash on your Evelyn pistol for each shot, if he isn't dead kill him off with your weapon. If you don't kill the one with the candle first go for him this is where you use fire paper. Once its just one left avoid attack when possible, and NEVER EVER let them do the ground touch, it summons annoying ass snakes. Sadly I'm unable to help with how to dodge the attacks either find what works for you or use the guide above. Thankyou for reading my strategy.


(( Please respect these video posting guidelines))


Notes & Trivia

  • It is very easy to charge a power attack and then v. attack one of them when they reach stage 2
  • You fight them again as regular enemies at Mergo's Loft Middle.
  • Their appearance loosely resembles the Nazgul (Ringwraiths) from The Lord of the Rings.





    • Anonymous

      02 Oct 2017 06:58  

      Equipped Bolt to strongest weapon. Visceral the katana shadow while dodging fireballs until dead. Went after fireball next. Then dodge counter the last guy. Just be super freaking aggressive. Once I stopped trying to avoid them and just keep wailing on them they went down in like 5 minutes.

      • Anonymous

        17 Jul 2017 14:18  

        It says "they're" strong to arcane, but it's just one of them who is. Even if "they" all are, I still summoned the two hunters and spammed the augur over and over, works every time.

        • Anonymous

          07 Jun 2017 04:53  

          "Loosely" resembles the Nazgul.... Nope, I don't see it at all! Did the Nazgul have CUTE LITTLE SHADOWY FACES hidden under their hoods???

          But really, I love the way they emerge from the mist in the badass villain formation, accompanied with that bizarre trilling of strings. Of course the first thing you notice is those big-ass scimitars.

          I'm still a little puzzled as to what "Shadow of Yharnam" means, though. Are they servants of the Pthumerian Queen, or does "shadow" imply they stalk her like prey? They don't seem to want you getting near Mergo, but that doesn't coincide with the Queen's presence in Mensis... I'm still trying to wrap my head around the symbolism of snakes, too.

          • Anonymous

            27 Jan 2017 17:09  

            You cannot lock on to and damage the snakes. They also have a health bar that depletes. Only problem is they have crazy defence
            198 ar = 42 damage per head. Plus they have a death animation if you kill the boss while they are summoned. Leading me to believe you can kill them.

            • Anonymous

              06 Jan 2017 17:40  

              There's a confusing level of conflict on this page about the resistances of the Shadows. In the combat description, it says that they're weak to bolt and strong against arcane. However, in the stats section, it indicates that (aside from the mace shadow who's also equally resistant to bolt) they have a fairly notable weakness to arcane, even greater than their weakness to bolt. So...anyone know which one it actually is?

              • Anonymous

                02 Dec 2016 20:02  

                The advantage of the summoning is that the shadow MUST have a margin to do it. I kept close to him and it never summoned those giant snakes. Its exactly the same as Vicar Amelia, she heals herself when she gets enough space between the hunter and her

                • Anonymous

                  18 Nov 2016 01:04  

                  NG+ this fight was simple IMO. Use a summon to distract 2 at a time and use bolt paper and single them out. Caster first. Backing them up one at a time into the dead end with the big gravestone helps in keeping them unable to dodge.

                  • Shadow of Yharnam [Bloodborne Wiki]11 Nov 2016 09:23  

                    Unless you play a SKILL based character there's a simple mechanic.

                    Step #1 Equip Hunter's Axe
                    Step #2 Equip it in Trick Stance (2-handed mode)
                    Step #3 Hold down R2, wait for it to fully charge and.....UNLEASH THE CYCLONE.

                    Seriously though. The fully charged strong attack, ase mentioned above, is a spin. A spin that knocks enemies down...including the Shades.

                    I use this tactic no matter the SL, the NG+ and the Stat-based character i am building.

                    The moment you enter the boss area, the melee Shade rushes you, giving you a hard time dodging him, as well as the Fireball-spewing Shade. Make your game easier.
                    The moment the sword-wielding Shade starts rushing you, use strong attack and knock his *** down, until he dies.
                    Same goes one for the second one...not particularly with Hunter's Axe or Stong attacks, that is only for the beginning to get rid of the annoying melee Shade.

                    As for the footwork and the positioning. That is kinda easy.
                    The moment you enter the boss-area, there is a stone/gravestone/rock on the right side. You can "easily" guide the fireballs to hit the stone and rule him out for some time. If he moves, you move as well, working/moving around the stone.

                    To be honest i agree with the comments above. Provided you can get rid of the fireball-Shade first, that is better, not to say the best approach. But... if you can't do it ( i know i could never do it ) try going brute, a bash the head of the melee Shade first using the stone/rock/grave/pebble thing for cover. ( That did work for me... ^^).

                    • Anonymous

                      04 Nov 2016 15:36  

                      I found this boss intimidating because of the comments I've read about people having such a hard time with them. Well, my strategy is simple and I killed them blind on the first try. First thing to note is you will need nothing but Blood Vials. Don't bother with fare/bolt paper or throwing items, the bosses move too fast. All you need to do in this fight is dodge and strike, rinse and repeat. That's it. Go for the ranged guy first. Don't even attack the other two until this guy is dead. Don't be worried about getting each one's health down to certain percentages simultaneously, it takes too much time and effort and you'll probably die trying to do this when you could be just wailing on them. The dreaded twin snakes summon in the third form did not instant-kill me, it only took about 1/2 my life. You can use the giant pillar in the middle of the area to heal up. After the first guy is gone, just pick the guy who's giving you more grief and focus on JUST him, until he's dead. Then go for the last guy. Even in his third phase, one guy is with full health is SO MUCH EASIER than three with low health. Just dodge, duck, dip, dodge, dodge, and roll around them, getting in thrust attacks when you can. I used Ludwig's Holy Blade +5 and I made short work of them. The entire battle took me about 5 minutes. I'm not saying this is an easy fight for everyone, but don't be intimidated by all this health percentage and phase 1, 2, 3 hubbub. Just run in there and show 'em what for.

                      1. Kill ranged fireball guy 100% dead.
                      2. Kill next guy of your choosing 100% dead (keep in mind the fire whip guy has a mid-range strike).
                      3. Kill last guy. Watch out for snake summons (when they come dodge towards last guy. The snakes spawn right next to you anyway, so you can dodge away for some hits while he's summoning and avoid the snakes).

                      • Anonymous

                        Origins of the boss?05 Oct 2016 05:05  

                        While reading more into HP lovecrafts works, al ot of monsters in this game can be traced back to some of his works and creations. the trivia says its resembles a Nazgul which is true but hastur cthulhu has more resemblance does he not?

                        • Anonymous

                          I *****ing hate this boss.03 Oct 2016 23:06  

                          No matter how many times I fight it, I never enjoy it. It's just a pretty *****ty, not at all fun boss.

                          • Anonymous

                            very fun fight14 Sep 2016 13:09  

                            just beat this boss (new to Bb) , this is a satisfying boss fight. not too hard but fun to fight

                            • Snake Attacks13 Aug 2016 07:30  

                              I always assumed that the giant snakes they summon in phase 3 did arcane damage. But when I got the Madaras Whistle and didn't have enough bloodtinge to use it, I started to wonder if the Shadows' snakes did bloodtinge damage instead. Can anyone confirm for me whether they do arcane or bloodtinge?

                              • Anonymous

                                Happy Feet09 Aug 2016 08:18  

                                I can confirm that, even on the last update, this technique still works. What's even better, all 3 had this behaviour when attacked close quarters, so all 3 got locked against a rock and whacked into oblivion.

                              Load more