Great Nailsage Sly

Location Godhome
Health 1050
Reward/s ??

Great Nailsage Sly is a Boss in Hollow Knight. Bosses are special Enemies that feature their own arena, a large amount of health, and a variety of unique moves and abilities. You will need to perform multiple attacks such as using The Nail and Nail Arts along with the Spells and Abilities in order to defeat them. Some bosses are capable of entering into a state of stagger after landing a number of attacks on them.

As soon as you encounter a boss, its name will appear on the screen, the music will change into a boss battle theme, and usually,  paths connecting the arena will close or will be blocked leaving you no choice but to face these devastating and unique foes.


Legendary sage of the nail arts and, recently, merchant of some success.

"Sagely God of the cunning and bold, Sharpen Our nails and show Us the odds, O greatest of masters, We wish to behold, That one still greater, the God of Gods!" - Prayer to the Sage


Great Nailsage Sly Location


Great Nailsage Sly Rewards

  • Rewards ??



Great Nailsage Sly Strategies

Strategy Writeup

The Great Nailsage Sly is quite a difficult and tricky boss. Compared to the others, he is faster and has a shorter recovery rate of executing one attack after the other. Sly can be fought in Godhome and appear as the final boss in the Pantheon of the Sage. It is recommended that you rely on your Spells or Charms that provide long-range effects or buffs. So first, let's talk about the Charms.

Quick Focus is a must to have equipped since Sly will not stop and will only give you little time or an opportunity to recover your health. So having this charm can help you recover health at a faster rate. Maintaining a safe space between you and Sly will be important, so in conjunction with that, make sure to have Mark of Pride to increase the range of the Nail allowing you to strike and be safe from a distance. Quick Slash is also helpful so that you can strike at even a faster rate.

Spells, Shade Soul or Vengeful Spirit will most likely work here, Abyss Shriek or Descending Dark isn't recommended since Sly constantly dances around the arena and you'll most likely miss. The reason why Shade Soul or Vengeful Spirit can work since it can be executed fast and can guarantee that it will hit Sly. But of course, if you plan on using your spells more often than The Nail, you must have the following charms equipped that can buff the overall effectiveness of your Spells - Shaman Stone to increase the effect of the spells, Spell Twister to reduce the SOUL required whenever you cast a spell, and Soul Catcher or Soul Eater to increase the amount of SOUL gained from striking the enemy with The Nail.

Keep your distance at all times, use long-range attacks, take your time, and use the opportunity to strike Sly whenever he falls onto the ground after performing an aerial attack. 


Attacks & Counters

Attack Counter
Phase 1
Triple Attack Sly will swing his nail twice and follow up with an aerial spinning attack. He will only spin in the air if The Knight is close to him. You will need to keep your distance when he swings his nail twice and be mindful to not jump afterward. When he finishes the third attack,  you can take the opportunity to land a few strikes while he falls back onto the ground.
Nailsage's Slam Sly will first jump into the air and immediately follow up with slamming onto the ground. You can avoid the attack by dashing away and following up with a spell such as Shade Soul since Sly will be briefly vulnerable after he performs this attack
Great Slash Sly will execute the Nail Art, Great Slash. Sly telegraphs this attack in place so be careful to not get too close since a column of energy is released after Sly swings his Nail. You can either keep your distance and use your ranged Spells or time your dash right to phase through Sly and attack him from behind.
Dash Slash Sly will execute the Nail Art, Dash Slash. For this attack, Sly will jump away from The Knight and follow up with a Dash Slash which covers mostly the arena. You can either jump high to avoid the attack or phase through Sly and follow up with striking him with The Nail or executing a spell.
Cyclone Slash Sly will execute the Nail Art, Cyclone Slash. Sly will spin around in the air for a brief moment and land back on the ground. You can avoid this by jumping above the attack and pogo off the attack to evade. If you get cornered, you can climb the wall and pogo off Sly.
Phase 2
Frenzied State Once you've dealt enough damage, Sly will enter a frenzied state which grants him improved movement speed. Sly jumps around the arena and bounces off walls for about 3-4 times before actually stopping midair and spin like a saw blade. Usually, Sly will stop midair close enough to The Knight to try and deal damage, you can actually land a few strikes while moves around the arena, and once he stops midair, try to dash away and follow-up with a long range spell.



Great Nailsage Sly Lore

Sly is first found at the Forgotten Crossroads fighting off The Infection. We are able to save him if we find him and later opens his shop in Dirtmouth where he appears to be a normal citizen who is just running a business. As the story progresses, The Knight eventually meets the three Nailmasters and learns the legendary Nail Arts, it is later on revealed that Sly is the Great Nailsage who stood as a mentor and parent figure to the Nailmasters Oro, Mato, and Sheo. He can only be fought in Godhome where he sits on top of the throne in the Pantheon of the Sage.


Great Nailsage Sly Notes & Trivia

  • Unlocks the "Focus" Trophy/Achievement after completing the Pantheon of the Sage



Broken Vessel  ♦  Brooding Mawlek  ♦  Brothers Oro and Mato  ♦  Crystal Guardian  ♦  Dung Defender (Boss)  ♦  Elder Hu  ♦  Failed Champion  ♦  False Knight  ♦  Flukemarm  ♦  Galien  ♦  God Tamer  ♦  Gorb  ♦  Grey Prince Zote  ♦  Gruz Mother  ♦  Hive Knight  ♦  Hollow Knight  ♦  Hornet (Boss)  ♦  Lost Kin  ♦  Mantis Lords  ♦  Markoth  ♦  Marmu  ♦  Massive Moss Charger  ♦  Nightmare King Grimm  ♦  No Eyes  ♦  Nosk  ♦  Oblobble  ♦  Paintmaster Sheo  ♦  Soul Master  ♦  Soul Tyrant  ♦  Soul Warrior  ♦  The Collector  ♦  The Radiance  ♦  Traitor Lord  ♦  Troupe Master Grimm (Boss)  ♦  Uumuu  ♦  Vengefly King  ♦  Watcher Knight  ♦  White Defender  ♦  Winged Nosk  ♦  Xero  ♦  Zote the Mighty (Boss)


Tired of anon posting? Register!
Load more
⇈ ⇈