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Dark Souls 3: Who Is The Nameless King?

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  • Who Is The Nameless King
  • How Do We Know He Is The Nameless King?
  • Why Was He Banished?

And now for a boss who needs no introduction… No, literally, we cannot introduce him.

The Nameless King is a secret boss found very late into the journey of Dark Souls 3. He resides in the legendary Archdragon Peak, and it seems he has befriended the hot-headed lizards there. The Nameless King is a formidable foe; he even fights with one of the legendary armaments of the Dark Souls timeline. This enigmatic figure has much more to him than meets the eye.

Many questions begin to surface upon our first meeting with this super-boss. Why is he nameless? Where did he get his weapon? What brought him to Archdragon Peak in the first place? Lucky for us, the Nameless King has a long history in the Souls series and even makes his first appearance in Dark Souls, though you may have missed him.

Who Is The Nameless King

The moniker "king" seems to be an understatement when referring to this character. All signs point to The Nameless King being Lord Gwyn's firstborn son. Gwyn had four children: Filianore, Gwynevere, Gwyndolin, and an unknown firstborn child. This child is only referenced a few times in a few item descriptions and based on those; we know this child was once a god of war. After some act of "foolishness," Gwyn banished his son and destroyed all statues of him, going so far as to strike any reference of his name from the history books.

So, we know that a god of war is out there, but how do we know this specific individual is that firstborn son? Let's look at the evidence, starting with a certain statue in Dark Souls. The Altar of Sunlight is located in the Undead Parish of Dark Souls, the main hub for the Warriors of Sunlight covenant. It is also crumbling into disrepair, with only the feet of the statue still intact, along with a bit of the weapon the warrior once held. This doesn't tell us much on its own, and the mystery as to why the Warriors of Sunlight altar had been defiled lasted until Dark Souls 3.

How Do We Know He Is The Nameless King?

In that title, we can unravel the mystery of the statue's identity exactly as you would expect: Feet pictures. No seriously. All we have left of the statue are its feet wrapped in cloth. If you look at the Nameless King's character model, his feet are also wrapped. Of course, we cannot draw conclusions from just a pair of feet alone. Behind the statue, we see a depiction of a weapon. This unique weapon can be found in both Dark Souls and Dark Souls 3. It is very clearly a broken representation of the Dragonslayer Spear.

In Dark Souls, this weapon can only be obtained by ascending a spear to +10 and then converting it to the Dragonslayer Spear. This meant that the weapon was considered a godly armament. However, it is odd to depict him with that spear since it belonged to Ornstein. There is an explanation for this, too, though. Ornstein was trained by The Nameless King and was most likely gifted the Dragonslayer Spear from the god of war. That weapon would have been seen as a bequeathment of divine right to the average citizen that made it up the ranks of the Warriors of Sunlight.

Additionally, when we fight against him, he utilizes lightning heavily, which is strongly associated with Gwyn in the games. The Nameless King is also one of the most difficult fights in the Soulsborne saga, which would fit with his lore of once being a god of war. Finally, when he is killed, "Heir of Fire Destroyed" flashes across your screen.

The fact that the Nameless King is an heir of fire is significant. Either he had a direct connection to the First Flame in some way, or he had once linked the flame in the past. Since he does not drop Ashes of a Lord like Aldrich or the Twin Princes, we know he never linked the flame, nor was he expected to link it like the Princes. Instead, he has a direct connection with the First Flame through Gwyn.

To summarize all the evidence, we can assume that this character is Gwyn's Firstborn in the following ways: He is depicted as the chief deity of the Warriors of Sunlight Covenant. No other character in the series has an appropriate character model to match the statue, and it is represented by the weapon that Gwyn's Firstborn gave to his star pupil. The Nameless King's headdress is directly modeled after Gwyn, which is referenced in the description of the item. The Nameless king has an unparalleled connection to lightning, greater than anyone else in the game, meaning he got his powers inherently, not through training.

Why Was He Banished?

What could cause such a monumental fall from grace for the first and most powerful child of Gwyn? The answer most likely lies in where we find him in Dark Souls 3. For a bit of background, there is nothing Gwyn hates more in the world than dragons. The first thing he did upon ascending to godhood was lead a genocide against the race of ancient stone dragons. Gwyn maintained this disdain for the dragon race throughout his life, and he would never be swayed from his hatred of the dragons.

The Nameless King, though, seemed to have an epiphany. At some point, The Nameless King felt pity for the dragons and switched sides from slaughtering them to protecting them. This most likely happened after the war against the Everlasting Dragons.

The Nameless King participated in the initial killing of the dragons, hence the name of his signature weapon, the Dragonslayer Swordspear. However, at some point, The Nameless King had a change of heart and either stood up to his father in open defiance or simply tried to get Gwyn to see the senselessness in his violence. Then, he was cast out of Anor Londo and began to wander the Lands Between.

It is unknown just how long he wandered, but eventually, he discovered the Path of the Drago,n and by extension, Archdragon Peak. The Nameless King called this mountain home for eons before we arrived. We have evidence of his open defiance to Gwyn all over the mountain. The fact that he has befriended and almost soul bonded with a storm drake, a lesser dragon, shows that he now has a positive relationship with the creatures.

Finally, when you first enter Archdragon Peak, you must kill an Ancient Dragon before progressing through the area. The Nameless King is, notably, located after this dragon, meaning to get to where he is, he had to bypass the dragon without killing it. Almost as if they were friendly, the dragon allowed him to come and go freely. We know that Gwyn's Firstborn was banished for allying with the dragons at some point in history. It would be the next logical step for that banished son to seek out the home of the dragons and find sanctuary with them.

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