Shadow Keep is a main area in the north of the Scadu Altus in Elden Ring DLC Shadow of the Erdtree, and hosts a Boss Fight against the Golden Hippopotamus and Messmer the Impaler. In this Elden Ring guide, we are going to reveal how to complete Shadow Keep via a step-by-step walkthrough.

How Do You Complete Shadow Keep in Elden Ring?

Elden Ring: How to Complete Shadow Keep Guide 1

On this page, we're going to reveal how to complete Shadow Keep. We'll include the location, a step-by-step walkthrough, and any additional information, like item drops.

Shadow Keep Location: How to Find It

Shadow Keep is immediately identifiable as soon as you enter the Scadu Altus — it's the gigantic, towering castle off in the distance. From the Site of Grace for Highroad Cross, follow the path north through the large enemy encampment and take the elevator inside its entrance to access Shadow Keep.

Shadow Keep: Walkthrough

Once you have the Site of Grace for the Shadow Keep Main Gate activated, enter the entrance courtyard and you will be immediately greeted by a Boss Fight encounter with the Golden Hippopotamus. For information and strategies covering how to beat Golden Hippopotamus, please click the link. Once it's dead, use the Site of Grace and then take the only path open to you to the left.

You can speak to a ghost in the first room, then ascend a wooden staircase to find soldiers to kill. Having done so, go up the next single staircase and stop. Turn to your right and you'll find a room with a window at the end overlooking a giant, glowing tree. There's a side room to the right with enemies inside guarding a Main-gauche. Having collected it, jump down into the courtyard with the glowing tree to find the Talisman of Lord's Bestowal. To return to the main path, head through the armoury off to the side of the tree and take the ladder in the back up. This leads you into a grand dining hall with knights patrolling; if you notice the staircase to the right through the opening, that's where you would have come from had you not investigated the tree, so you haven't missed anything.

In the dining hall, you'll happen upon two very tricky customers: heavily equipped knights, one with a Greatbow (it switches for a Twin Blade at close range) and another with some sort of Greatsword and a Greatshield. Try to break them apart so you can focus on one without worrying about the other if you want to get through this encounter. Once they're both dead, grab the Golden Vow and Shadow Realm Rune [6] from the two corpses and head back outside via the exit to the left of the fireplace.

Follow the path round to the right, and once you reach the fork, take a right down the long staircase to open a set of double doors creating a shortcut back to the Site of Grace where the Golden Hippopotamus once stood. Once you've rested, head back to the fork in the road and press straight on to face a new enemy type guarding an elevator. Once you've killed them, take the elevator up to the Specimen Storehouse where a Site of Grace lies.

This area is large and labyrinthine, making it difficult to navigate and direct you through. If you stay on this current floor and head all the way to the back, you'll find Sir Ansbach reading. Exhaust all his dialogue, then take a right out of the room he's in and use the staircases to reach the top floor. Take a left, then you should be level with a hanging statue you can jump onto, using its legs and then climbing up its back. Jump off its head to reach a Site of Grace and a Scadutree Fragment and the Storehouse Cross Message.

To progress, head out onto the balcony and hang left up the staircase defeating the enemies you come up against. When the two bats appear, go down the stairs to reenter the Specimen Storehouse on a higher level and grab the Secret Rite Scroll. Now, return to the bats and continue on. The next floor up outside takes you back inside, where sticking to the right-hand path will take you up more floors. You'll find another Site of Grace and Redmane Freyja on the top floor. Talk to her, then head to the area opposite where the bull statue is hanging. Jump onto its back to grab the Revered Spirit Ash, then drop down to the level below and pull the lever to activate the central mechanism, making all the statues move.

Now, if you fast travel back to the Site of Grace on the seventh floor, you can jump over to a new platform and use the statues to access a new area up above. Once outside, ascend the staircase and go to battle with the red-caped soldier at the top to your left. This is a tough fight for a standard enemy, as it employs flaming attacks. Once it's down, push open the double doors it was guarding. Inside is a Scadutree Fragment and a staircase leading even higher into Shadow Keep.

At the top is another Site of Grace to activate, called the Dark Chamber Entrance. Push open the double doors and you'll be greeted by Messmer the Impaler. For a guide covering how to beat Messmer the Impaler, click the link. Having beaten his two phases, Shadow Keep will be complete.

In order to push the main story forward and keep making progress, you'll need to return to the Site of Grace on Storehouse, First Floor and take a left to use the elevator leading down to the basement. Explore this area until you come to a large and long hallway packed full of pots and pot enemies. Follow this linear path and it'll eventually bring you to the West Rampart and then the Viaduct Minor Tower. Ahead of you will be the Ancient Ruins of Rauh, which is where the core narrative continues.

Shadow Keep: Item Drops and Loot

  • Aspects of the Crucible: Thorns
  • Scadutree Fragment
  • Festive Grease
  • Smithing Stone [1]
  • Rainbow Stone
  • Main-gauche
  • Talisman of Lord's Bestowal
  • Somber Smithing Stone [9]
  • Golden Vow
  • Shadow Realm Rune [6]
  • Holyproof Pickled Liver
  • Rune Arc
  • Fire Coil
  • Ember of Messmer
  • Smithing Stone [8]
  • Fire Knight's Shortsword
  • Hefty Beast Bone
  • Beast Horn
  • Ash of War: Wall of Sparks
  • Scadutree Fragment
  • Storehouse Cross Message
  • Secret Rite Scroll
  • Shadow Realm Rune [5]
  • Smithing Stone [6]
  • Revered Spirit Ash
  • Remembrance of the Impaler
  • Messmer's Kindling

Did you find our guide covering how to complete Shadow Keep in Elden Ring helpful? Share any of your own strategies in the comments below and check out our Elden Ring guide for more guidance and information.