Elden Ring Guide – Nokstella, Eternal City and the Lake of Rot

In Elden Ring’s Liurnia Region, the larger underground region and hybrid dungeon known as Nokstella, which also contains the Eternal City and the Lake of Rot, can be found. It is an optional underground area that is slightly more linear than the overworld, but it maintains many of the overworld’s core mechanics, such as fast travel and the restoration of flasks upon the defeat of enemy groups. This page contains information on the location, a walkthrough, and a guide to traverse this area, locate all of its treasure, and find out how to defeat the enemies that are located within it.

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EnemiesBossNotable Loot
Giant Ants, Clayman, Malformed Star, Lesser Kindred of Rot, Swordstress, Silver TearsBaleful Shadow, Astel, Naturalborn of the Void, Glintstone Dragon AdulaGolden Seed, Frozen Lightning Spear, Wing of Astel, Scorpion’s Stinger, Remembrance of the Naturalborn, Dark Moon Greatsword, Dragon Heart, Adula’s Moonblade, Larval Tear

How to Get To Nokstella, Eternal City

This location, which is a part of the Ainsel River but cannot be reached until after you have explored the underground river well, is inaccessible for the first time. After you have vanquished Starscourge Radahn, you will need to continue Ranni’s Questline by exploring Nokron, the Eternal City, in order to locate the item that Ranni is looking for.

Return to Ranni’s Rise in northern Liurnia (behind Caria Manor) with the Fingerslayer Blade you obtained from Night’s Sacred Ground in Nokron, Eternal City, and speak with Ranni to give her the blade. This can be done behind Caria Manor. If you continue to speak with her, she will eventually hand you the Carian Inverted Statue, which unlocks the remaining areas of the Carian Study Hall as well as the Divine Tower of Liurnia for you to explore.

After acquiring this, descend the tower and travel to Renna’s Rise, the tower that is the most northerly of the three. There, you will find a waygate at the very top of the tower. You can travel to Ainsel River Main by interacting with it, and once you’re there, you can activate the Site of Grace there.

Just before you reach the Site of Grace, there is a miniature Ranni doll encased in a coffin. There are also several Silver Firefly that can be collected from the area around the water stream. As you proceed forward, you will see another Malformed Star off to the right in the distance, as well as a few Clayman warriors out on patrol.

There are dozens of Dewkissed Herba plants scattered throughout the various bushes in this area. There are also a couple of dead bodies off to the left: one is floating in the water with a Golden Rune in its hand, and the other is lying on the stone floor off to the left with a Human Bone Shard in its hand. There are also a couple of Ghost Glovewort (6) plants located on the other side of the water from the Malformed Star. If you are able to eliminate the Malformed Star through the use of ranged combat, you will be able to easily traverse the entire area and acquire these items.

Moving to the left and following the water stream will lead you to a body that contains a Smithing Stone (4), and beyond that, a Giant Miranda Flower, as well as 4 smaller Miranda Flowers, and a couple of Clayman spearmen will be waiting for you. They are watching over a dead body that is guarding a Stonesword Key, and there is another Ghost Glovewort (6) plant tucked away in the back right corner of the area by the waterfall.

When you go back to the building that the Malformed Star was guarding, there are two Ghost Glovewort plants (6) and (7) hidden behind the statue on the left. Once you enter the building and deal with the Clayman sorcerer, there is another Ghost Glovewort plant (7) on the right-hand side of the room.

As you move down the slope beyond the structure, you will notice that there are several deposits of Formic Rock lining either side of the passageway. Additionally, there are two Giant Ants hanging out on the ceiling. After you’ve dealt with those blocking your path, you’ll be transported to a new area filled with bones and viscera and inhabited by a number of winged ants. You can stealthily approach two dead bodies and loot them; one of the bodies contains a Golden Rune (10) and the other contains Shield Grease.

After dispatching the two Winged Ants, head down the slope on the left to face an Armored Ant. To inflict maximum damage on its body, you should position yourself behind the shield protecting its head during this battle. After passing the Armored Ant, keep going down the tunnel until you come out on a ledge that is high above the room containing the first Malformed Star. Because there will be two spellcasters in this area, you need to be very careful not to get caught or blown off the ledge by any of their spells. If you want to play it extra safe, you can try to lure them back into the tunnel.

You’ll find a chest on top of the structure to the left after you make a sharp turn to the right, carefully follow the path as it curves around to the right, and then drop down to continue. A chest contains the Wing of Astel sword, so make sure you jump over it carefully. You can also choose the more difficult route, which will allow you to gain a Somber Smithing Stone by looting the corpse that you will have seen after completing the fight against the spellcasters (6).

After climbing back up through the tunnel, take a left turn and follow the water down until you reach another structure with good lighting. To enter Nokstella, the Eternal City, first retrieve the Ghost Glovewort (6) plant that is located near the grates, then ascend the stairs located on the left side of the room.

Nokstella, Eternal City

A Swordstress mounted on a Giant Ant can be found to the right of the Site of Grace. She is patrolling the water close to a Ghost Glovewort (7) plant.

As you make your way up the stairs on the left, after the first flight, turn left and engage the Swordstress who is located in the small building. After defeating her, look to the right for a chest that contains the Ant’s Skull Plate shield. On the landing at the top of the following set of stairs will be another Swordstress as well as several charged Silver Tears. After making a turn to the left, you will come across a second small room that is occupied by four shielded Silver Tears that stand guard over a chest that holds a Ghost-Glovewort Picker’s Bell Bearing (2). As you leave this room, you should go around the side of the building to the left and follow the path until you reach a dead end where you will find a body that contains the Archer Ashes.

As you continue along the arched corridor, a Silver Tear will fall from the ceiling and temporarily absorb you. This will happen just as you grab the Golden Rune (10) from the corpse that is hanging from the ledge on the right. You can go through an opening on the left side of the corridor about halfway down the hallway. Once you do so, a Silver Tear will fall from the ceiling above you and attempt to absorb you. A Somber Smithing Stone can be found within the chest in this room (7). The dead body that is holding another golden rune can be found at the end of the corridor (10).

After ascending the stairs on the left, you will notice that there is a Living Boulder on the other side of the large bridge to the right. This Living Boulder will roll towards you, and just like the one in Nokron, killing it will reward you with a Larval Tear. You can find an Imp Seal by going around the back of the building to the left and looking for it. Directly behind the Imp Seal are two Swordstresses and a chest that contains the ashes of the Nightmaiden and Swordstress Puppets.

After passing through the western opening and ascending the stairs, you will find yourself in a room that contains two Silver Tears and a Swordstress. These Silver Tears will morph into two separate warriors, one armed with a greatsword and the other with a shield and a spear. It is recommended that you use ranged attacks so that you can draw them out one at a time rather than getting overwhelmed by their extreme aggression. You can do this by attacking them at a distance. After they and the Swordmistress have been dealt with, the Moon of Nokstella will be found in the chest that is located behind them. To obtain a Nascent Butterfly, you will need to make a sharp turn to the right and go around the side of this enormous throne.

You can access the lift by going down the slope that is accessible from the passageway that is on the left side of the room. As you ride the lift down, you will notice that there is a Golden Seed tree directly in front of you. It is strongly suggested that you make a hasty return to Nokstella, the Eternal City Site of Grace, from this location.

A body containing Drawstring Holy Grease can be found in the ruins to the north, along with another body containing a Smithing Stone (6). Be cautious because there are swordstresses in the area. In a nook not far beyond the ruins, there are three snails guarding a dead body that is holding a bottle of celestial dew. Following the water downstream will lead you to a number of Silver Tears, additional Snails on the right side of the building, and a Swordstress riding an Ant.

A good number of these Silver Tears are electrified, and when they are killed, they will explode with a small electric sphere that has area of effect. You should take advantage of the fact that these can set off a chain reaction in order to dispose of a number of Silver Tears as well as the Swordstress and Ant without putting up too much of a fight. You’ll find a corpse with a Golden Rune on the right side of the area, near some rocks, and a Ghost Glovewort (8) on the left side of the area, near the grates (10). As you travel further to the northwest, you will come across more electrified Silver Tears and three Giant Ants on the right, in addition to a number of deposits of Formic Rock. You will need to get behind the Silver Tears on the ridge that are firing projectiles at you in order to get around their shield. A dead body can be found just beyond the Ants, to the north-northwest, and it is holding a Stonesword Key.

You will come across a stone structure to the left that has blue flames, but before you do, head past it to a structure with an arched entrance near the waterfall so that you can confront a group of Silver Tears. They are keeping watch over a dead body that contains a drop of Celestial Dew.

You can ride a lift down to a new Site of Grace that is beneath the waterfall of the arena that you found the Dragonkin Soldier of Nokstella in by entering the stone structure that is located to the left of the water stream in the picture that is located above. You’ll find a Ghost Glovewort (9) plant tucked away to the left, and if you go through the tunnel to the south, you’ll come across three Basilisks guarding two corpses that each have a Smithing Stone (4) and (5) in their possession, respectively.

When you reach the end of the passage, you will emerge into a room with a reddish hue. Within this room, a red spirit of Blaidd will reincarnate as a Baleful Shadow. After defeating Blaidd, who is able to inflict Bleed and use their own Crimson Tear Flasks, Ranni will thank you and give you the Discarded Palace Key. This conversation will take place after you have spoken to the Miniature Ranni doll at a Site of Grace multiple times and received the task of defeating these Baleful Shadows.

To reach the Lake of Rot Shoreside Site of Grace, ascend the stairs located to the right of the entrance, and then ride the lift down. A dead body can be found at the bottom of the slope to the right, holding a map labelled “Lake of Rot.”

Lake of Rot

The entirety of this zone inflicts the status effect known as Scarlet Rot, which, once the bar has been filled to the top, will cause your health to deplete much more quickly than it would from regular poison. This zone is initially intimidating.

The most effective tactic to use when you first enter the zone is to immediately spend as many of your runes as you can while also stocking up on health flasks. Even though Preserving Boluses can help mitigate the effects of Scarlet Rot, you will, in all likelihood, be throwing away resources if you use them on your first trip through this region. You should hurry to the southwest to reach the nearest pillar. The pressure plate is located on that platform, and it will raise a section of the pathway so that it is easier to navigate in the future. Carry on in this manner while moving in a southerly or southwesterly direction, activating the pressure plates by running from pillar to pillar, and topping off your health whenever it drops too low.

You can access a Site of Grace by going through the main doors after descending the steps on the left-hand side of the large stone structure built into the cliff face on the south wall. Because you now possess this item, you will no longer be affected by the Scarlet Rot and will be able to teleport with ease between the various sides of the Lake of Rot.

From there, return to the top of the stairs and dash to the west. You will see a smaller stone structure there, and inside it will be a chest containing the Nomadic Warrior’s Cookbook 22. Once you’ve returned to the Site of Grace, descend the stairs inside the structure, then make the jump across to the right side to reach the destroyed ledge. After you’ve traversed the gaps and rounded the back, you’ll find a dead body with a golden rune (10). As you make your way back to the opposite side, descend through the gap, and on the level below you will find a golden centipede. As you proceed to descend further, you will come across a number of Lesser Kindred of Rot as you approach the ground level.

You have the option of facing them head-on or running past them. In the building to the west, there is a chest up the stairs that contains the weapon known as the Scorpion’s Stinger. After descending the steps, take a right turn and immediately begin running towards the coffin that is located at the edge of the waterfall in the centre of the room. Interacting with the coffin will cause you to be teleported to a hidden boss.

Boss Fight – Astel, Naturalborn of the Void

Astel is a hyper aggressive Malformed Star. Due to the sheer ferocity of its attacks and the variety of moves it can perform, it is likely to take a number of tries before one is successful in defeating it.

Astel will most likely begin the fight by entering the arena through the mist wall. Once inside, it will most likely begin by conjuring a massive beam between its mandibles. Avoiding this attack, as well as the majority of the others that Astel employs, requires slightly delayed reactions. For instance, Astel builds up this beam by tilting its head backwards and then angling it downwards towards you. In order to avoid being hit by the beam as it is fired, you will need to wait for approximately a second while Astel is in this position.

When Astel wants to perform a double slam attack, it swings its tail like a scorpion and does so from above its head. Astel makes a slight ascent into the air as it prepares for the slams, and just like with the beam, you’ll need to dodge later than you’d expect, once Astel has landed again, in order to synchronise yourself with the tail coming down.

The vast majority of Astel’s attacks are based on the utilisation of gravitational energy, which he does by conjuring purple spheres with cosmic-looking trails attached to them. These can be in the form of swipes with its hands, which leave a trail of vapour behind it and explode after a brief delay. Alternatively, they can be in the form of blasts. If you get caught in this vapour trail, you will have enough time to get out of it if you roll in the right direction to get out of the trail’s path.

Because you will spend the majority of your time underneath Astel’s abdomen, particularly if you are a melee character, it is equipped with a number of punishing attacks that can be used against you if you become too greedy. These take the form of either Astel conjuring these purple spheres in its hands and slamming them into the ground, sending out pulsing waves of energy that will knock you down if they hit you. Alternatively, these take the form of Astel summoning these purple spheres in its hands and slamming them into the ground. You have the ability to roll through each of these waves, but doing so requires precise timing and the ability to keep your composure if you find yourself below Astel while it is preparing an attack. One more thing that’s happening is that Astel is creating a gravity well in a circle around itself, and you can tell because small rocks have started to float around in that area. After a brief period of time, everything inside that circle will start to levitate, and then Astel will bring it all crashing back down to the ground. Because this move has the potential to result in an instant kill, you should immediately flee the area and start running in the opposite direction the moment the slam hits the ground.

One of Astel’s mandible attacks is a regular two-move bite, and the other is a super-charged variant that is indicated by blue energy lining its mandibles. Both of these attacks take place if you linger in front of Astel. In the event that you are hit by this, Astel will lift you into the air before hurling you back down to the ground with such force that it almost always results in an instant kill.

If Astel squats down and a sphere begins to materialise and pulse above its body, it means that it is about to teleport to a different part of the arena. However, as it does so, the sphere will explode outwards, so you should get away as quickly as possible as it begins to do this. You will also want to keep your head on a swivel for where it spawns because, if you don’t immediately see a new sphere signalling Astel’s arrival, it is about to perform an arena-wide lunge attack from above that, if caught in its mandibles, results in an instant kill. If you don’t immediately see a new sphere signalling Astel’s arrival, you will want to keep your head on a swivel for In order to prevent the move from connecting, make a last-second roll in the direction of Astel if it does this.

Astel is able to rear its head back when it has approximately fifty percent of its health remaining, while cosmic portals appear behind it. As soon as the portals begin to pulse, they will begin to fire comets at you in rapid succession, causing it to snow comets for a few seconds. You won’t be safe from the comets that are heading in your direction regardless of how far away they are, so you’ll have to make a roll for your life as soon as the comets start emerging from the portals.

You will be awarded the Remembrance of the Naturalborn once you have successfully vanquished Astel, Naturalborn of the Void.

Moonlight Altar

If you have the Dark Moon Ring, which you can get by using the key you get from defeating the Baleful Shadow on the chest next to Rennala in Raya Lucaria, then the northern portion of the arena will be accessible to you and you will be able to travel there. Get on the lift at the bottom of the slope, and then head up it to reach the Moonlight Altar.

In order to proceed to the Cathedral of Manus Celes, you will first need to vanquish the Glintstone Dragon, Adula. You will receive three Dragon Hearts and Adula’s weapon, the Moonblade, after you have vanquished Adula. The next step is to go inside the Cathedral, activate the Site of Grace, and then descend through the hole in the floor while moving from one platform to the next on the right side of the room. Then, continue on through the tunnel until you reach Ranni, who will tell you that she used the Fingerslayer Blade that you provided to kill an instance of the Two Fingers. Interact with Ranni so that the Dark Moon Ring can be placed on her finger; doing so will completely free her from the bonds that have been holding her captive. She will express her gratitude to you and say that she hopes to see you once more in the future. After that, the Dark Moon Greatsword will be given to you.