The Abyss Watchers are a legion of troops that all wear the same outfit consisting of leather armor over chain mail, a long cloak, and distinctive, pointed helm that was their signature. They also have iron kneecaps due to their unique sword techniques.
All of them use a great sword and a crooked dagger. The dagger is not primarily used for offense, or even parrying, but instead as fulcrum for the Watchers to utilize their wild, unpredictable fighting style.
By the time the player meets the Watchers, they've already gone mad and have been reduced to hacking each other to pieces.
The Abyss Watchers, Farron's Undead Legion, were a special fighting force formed to combat the threat of the Abyss and partook of wolf blood to do so. Taking inspiration from the Wolf Knight (Sir Artorias, the Abyss Walker), if there were even a slight threat of the Abyss, the Watchers would go so far as to raze a country to the ground.
They were unique in the sense that instead of one body hosting multiple souls, it is the reverse where multiple bodies share one soul. They noticeably engage the Watchers who resurrect with red eyes. This is because they are forced to perpetually fight each other, in order to purge the abyss that corrupts them.
Their distinct outfits became an ill omen for any who saw them. Their fighting style was unique in that they utilized a crooked dagger to allow them to perform strange, wild flipping and scrambling maneuvers that were incredibly unpredictable and vicious. As such, they disdained the use of shields and preferred a constant offense. At some point however, they were known to enlist the services of one of the crystal sages and use magics that put more emphasis on speed like Farron's darts.
Soul of the Blood of the Wolf
Cinders of a Lord
The fight consists of the player fighting a lone Abyss Watcher, who is present during the entire battle. More Abyss Watchers will awaken to join the battle as it progresses. These Watchers are much more fragile than the main Watcher, but they can still deal a considerable amount of damage, especially when multiple attack at once.
Every other Watcher that awakens, starting from the second, will be red-eyed and hostile toward other Watchers. They will never directly attack the player or each other, but can still hurt them, should they be caught in a swing. These Watchers can be used to the player's advantage, as they assist in dealing damage and taking aggro. As such, it may be a good idea to switch to a more defensive playstyle while the player waits for these Watchers to even out the odds.
The main Watcher, although carrying a greatsword, is extremely fast and dexterous. He is constantly jumping around and evading the players swings by doing so. He will also try to take an advantage by swinging his greatsword around the floor of the arena. Never let your guard down, each and every attack can take you by surprise.
Depleting the main Watcher's HP will trigger a cutscene, which shows the main Watcher absorbing power from the corpses around the arena. After this, the second phase of the battle commences.
At this point, the Watcher's sword will ignite, causing it to deal additional Fire damage and leaving trails in the floor that erupt into large pillars of flame. The Watcher also takes on an appearance similar to a Host of Cinders.
The other Watchers no longer rise during the second phase, but the main Watcher is considerably more aggressive and powerful. The fight plays out in a similar fashion, but most of the Watcher's greatsword attacks are altered in some way. Killing the Watcher at this point will end the fight, but dying will reset it entirely, requiring the player to beat the first phase again.
- Can be parried and backstabbed in both phases of the encounter.
- The Watchers wake up based on a timer. Damage dealt has no effect on how many of them are active.
- All Watchers are instantly killed when the first phase of the fight is finished.
- The red-eyed Watchers are fully capable of finishing off the main Watcher. This has no direct effect on gameplay, however.
- Hawkwood the Deserter is a former member of the Abyss Watchers.
- From the description of their soul and the ability to create the Wolf Knight Greatsword, it seems that the massive soul of the Undead Legion is a reincarnation of Artorias himself, as many souls have been known to eventually reincarnate.
- Despite claiming to pay homage to Sir Artorias, their fighting style is more akin to how he fought after being driven mad by the Abyss.
- Ironically, this would make Hawkwood closer to Artorias, as he fought with a shield which earned him mockery from his comrades.