Skip to main content

5 Skyrim hidden bosses - you haven't completed Skyrim until you've seen these guys

You may be feeling pretty proud of yourself after defeating the mighty Alduin, but there are even tougher foes out there, and if you want to prove yourself worthy then you'll need a Skyrim hidden bosses guide to track them down. There's a hidden dragon, a glacial giant, a vampiric demon, and more if you know where to look in Skyrim, and they're all just spoiling for a fight with the Dragonborn. Before you retire to your Thane's mansion and hang up your weapons for good, follow our Skyrim hidden bosses guide for some epic battles.

1. Vulthuryol

Blackreach is a stunning cave underneath the Tower of Mzark, filled with luminous blue mushrooms, soft lighting, and towering Dwemer ruins. When I first walked in there it took my breath away, but little was I to know that trying out most of my shouts on the bright orb hanging from the ceiling would have such disastrous, fiery consequences. Blackreach has a hidden, level 50 dragon boss named Vulthuryol, who you can summon by yelling the Unrelenting Force Thu’um at the giant globe which hangs from the cavern ceiling. But there’s some good news too: if you summon him but decide you don’t fancy a fight, he’ll swoop around killing enemies in Blackreach until you initiate combat. Thanks Vulthuryol!

2. Karstaag the Frost Giant

Some of you might be in for a nostalgia trip here, as this boss is a throwback to Morrowind. If you're playing the original release, the ruins of Castle Karstaag can be found in the Dragonborn DLC in the north-west of Solstheim, and are in a bit of a sorry state. They’re now in a cave instead of their former, magnificently glacial form. During the events of Morrowind: Bloodmoon, the castle was lorded over by Karstaag, a frost giant, and his Riekling minions. But now all that remains is a solitary throne. If you find Karstaag’s skull at the back of the Glacial Cave and put it on his throne, you can get a brief glimpse of his ghost. And I mean brief, because he’s level 90 and will destroy you unless you prepare before charging in (I found this out the hard way).  

3. The Reaper

He comes for us all, but this one can be specifically found in the Soul Cairn from the Dawnguard DLC. When you’ve been granted access to the Soul Cairn, gather three Reaper gem fragments. You can find them underneath the big purple crystals which, be warned, drain your health. As if that wasn’t incentive enough to stay as far away from the Reaper as possible, once you’ve got all three you’ll need to put them on the altar in the Reaper’s Lair, an ominous-looking black building. Once summoned, the hooded Reaper will spout green slime and has Bonemen minions, and his difficulty will increase depending on your level - so make sure you stock up on potions, decent armour, and weapons before you take him on. 

4. Ebony Warrior

A good quest for those of you who don’t like to search for things to do in Skyrim, the Ebony Warrior will seek you out himself. He likes a fair fight though, so he won’t come anywhere near you until you’re level 80. Once you reach it, however, he’ll hunt you down and challenge you to a duel to the death. You’ll soon be growing cold in a pool of your own blood if you’re not careful, as The Ebony Warrior is the real deal: he’s immune to a heap of shouts, he’s got similar perks and abilities to you, and he’s got 50% resistance to shock, frost, and fire damage. Plus he can cast spells. And he can use two dragon shouts: Disarm and Unrelenting Force. The Ebony Warrior is not an encounter for the faint hearted, but once beaten his enchanted armour, weapons, and jewelry are well worth the trouble. 

5. BONUS: Strange orb 

So this isn’t a boss exactly, but it’s certainly an encounter which you won’t want to miss. At the eastern-most edge of the map you’ll find the Dwemer ruin of Kagrenzel, which you should enter before simply following the hallway. Eventually you’ll reach a large chamber strewn with bandit corpses (that can’t be a bad sign, right?). There’s a strange light in the centre of the room, so go and touch it. I’m not going to tell you what happens next, but you should probably save your game beforehand. Have fun!

Skyrim cheats | Best Skyrim mods | How to install Skyrim mods | Best Skyrim companions | Skyrim armor | Skyrim perks | Skyrim enchanting guide | Skyrim alchemy guide | Skyrim hidden chest locations | Skyrim hidden quest locations | Skyrim Black Books guide | Skyrim Daedric Quest guide

Hi, I'm Zoe! When I'm not gushing over Bioshock or playing Dungeons & Dragons you'll find me trying to unearth another ring to add to my knuckleduster-worthy collection.