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Shambler

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Shambler
Shambler.png
Enemy Type Eldritch
Size Large
Actions per round Turnticker.png
Stats
Variation Shambler Grotesque
Shambler
Abhorrent
Shambler
HP 77 116 158
HP (Stygian/Bloodmoon) 93 140 190
Dodge 0 8.75 22.5
Protection 33 33 33
Speed 0 1 2
Tray stealth.png Stealth None None None
Resistances
Poptext stun.png Stun 100% 120% 140%
Poptext poison.png Blight 40% 60% 80%
Poptext bleed.png Bleed 40% 60% 80%
Poptext debuff.png Debuff 40% 60% 80%
Poptext move.png Move 50% 70% 90%

Shambler Tentacle
Shambler Tentacle.png
Enemy Type Eldritch
Size Small
Actions per round Turnticker.png
Stats
Variation Shambler
Sycophant
Shambler
Spore
Shambler
Spawn
HP 8 12 16
HP (Stygian/Bloodmoon) 10 15 20
Dodge 17.5 26.25 40
Protection 0 0 0
Speed 10 11 12
Tray stealth.png Stealth None None None
Resistances
Poptext stun.png Stun 50% 70% 90%
Poptext poison.png Blight 40% 60% 80%
Poptext bleed.png Bleed 40% 60% 80%
Poptext debuff.png Debuff 40% 60% 80%
Poptext move.png Move 40% 60% 80%

Behold the infinite malignity of the stars!
~ The Ancestor

A predatory nightmare summoned from the darkest recesses of the unknown, the Shambler is an Eldritch miniboss that lurks in blackest pitch, dropping Ancestral trinkets when killed. When traveling with your torchlight at 0, the Shambler may appear, replacing any hallway fight (1% chance on Apprentice, 8% on Veteran, 12% Champion), or when a Torch is used on a Shambler's Altar (which will also set the light to 0). Every turn, it will attempt to spawn two Shambler Tentacles, fairly weak enemies that give themselves an enormous buff with every attack, causing it to grow stronger and stronger. Even if a Tentacle is killed, the Shambler will just create a new one, replacing ones that were killed.

Behavior[edit | edit source]

The Shambler fight will always be at 0 torchlight, with all the buffs and debuffs associated, and the light cannot be increased with torches or skills while the Shambler is still alive. The party will always be surprised when the battle starts, disrupting party formation. If summoned but then ran away from, the Shambler will appear again as the next encounter. Don't summon it unless the party is prepared to kill it.

Due to a very low speed, it will most likely act last, using either Obdurous Advancement or Undulating Withdrawal and summoning 2 Shambler Tentacles. Unlike the Shambler itself, the Tentacles have a very high speed; they are very likely to take actions before the party, applying an extremely strong buff to themselves. If one or both of the Tentacles are killed, the Shambler may attempt to re-summon them the next time it acts by. If at least one is left alive, the Shambler has a chance to use Stentorious Lament, which will shuffle your party's formation again in addition to causing stress.

Strategy[edit | edit source]

The Shambler is easily more dangerous than most bosses, meaning it's usually better to avoid fighting it. If you decide to spawn it from an altar, you should probably wait until you've finished the quest, as you'll likely be in no condition to continue afterwards. In the likely scenario where you have to flee from the Shambler, you can, at least, turn in the finished quest and return to the Hamlet immediately without worry of it chasing down the party.

The Shambler is equally vulnerable to bleeds and blights, but at only 1 action per round, they will not progress very quickly. They might still be ideal to use though since this demon has 33% PROT and a significant Dodge stat. Fortunately though, it has a slow speed, so your party is almost guaranteed to go first for setup.

The first notable feature of the fight with the Shambler is that it's always in complete darkness. This raises everyone's crit rate, but also jacks up the Stress that your party will be experiencing. When preparing for such a fight, equip Trinkets that benefit in low-light situations. Stress relief will also be important if you intend to endure a drawn-out battle. If you feel that your Stress relief options are not sufficient for the fight, consider Virtue chance-increasing traits and Trinkets to give your heroes a chance to turn the battle around in a pinch.

The next notable feature is constant shuffles. Your party always starts the fight ambushed, causing a scramble and forcing you to spend your first turn getting everyone back in position. Bring party members with movement skills so that you can reposition them while also attacking the Shambler. You can also pre-shuffle your party before triggering a fight from the Altar and hope that your party gets reshuffled into a favorable position.

The third and most dangerous feature of the fight is the Shambler Tentacles it spawns. It always summons enough for two to be on the battlefield at a time. The tentacles start out relatively easy to pick off, but their single attack skill grants them a stacking PROT, DMG, and CRIT bonus that will make them incredibly tough threats. The Tentacles don't disappear if the Shambler is dead and can become the cause of a party wipe, so it's important to wipe them out (or stun them) as soon as possible. Area-of-effect attacks are effective here in keeping the Tentacles in check while also affecting the Shambler - too much attention on the Tentacles means that the Shambler gets more free turns to cause havoc on the party.

The Shambler does have weaknesses, though. Because its attacks always hit the entire party at once, it's highly vulnerable to Riposte. Maintaining Riposte on your party (usually with a Highwayman or Man-at-Arms) lets you pile on incremental damage over time while you're clearing out the Tentacles. And if a Tentacle does manage to get away with stacking up to 75% PROT, bear in mind that Bleeds and Blights will still eat through its health in a few turns.

Team Selection[edit | edit source]

Preferred Heroes[edit | edit source]

These heroes usually have good mobility to quickly recover from shuffles, and can operate safely from any part of the formation.

  • Man-at-Arms - Bolster provides a long-lasting Stress reduction buff. Retribution is a great Riposte source, and Rampart can stun and reposition.
  • Highwayman - Duelist's Advance is the skill to use here, as it enables Riposte and repositions the Highwayman.
  • Occultist - Damage bonus against Eldritch can tear into the Shambler and its Tentacles. Weakening Curse can reduce their PROT.
  • Jester - Easily jumps back and forth to any part of the party; good Stress relief for the fight. Equip a Dark Tambourine for best performance.
  • Grave Robber - Lunge and Shadow Fade can arrange your party against the Shambler's shuffle. Pick to the Face can severely damage a Tentacle through its PROT buffs.
  • Shieldbreaker - Perfectly at home with movement. Impale can tag the Shambler and its Tentacles with Blight all at once and Pierce will bypass any PROT the Tentacles might have stacked. You can also prepare for the fight with her Armor Piercing camp buff.

Reasonable Choices[edit | edit source]

  • Abomination - While transformed, he can spam Rake and constantly shred through the Tentacles. Be mindful of his mounting Stress.
  • Plague Doctor - Since a lot of damage comes from Blight and Bleed, Battlefield Medicine can remove them and keep the party together. However, she can't heal while in the front, and has little in the way of repositioning.
  • Crusader - Holy Lance can break him out of the back lines. Zealous Accusation can clean up leftover Tentacles, and Stunning Blow can keep them in check.
  • Houndmaster - Cry Havoc can keep the whole party's stress low. Hound's Harry is also great for spreading minor Bleeds across the Shambler and its Tentacles.
  • Hellion - Breakthrough is great for forcing forward from the back and crashing through Tentacles and Shambler alike, but mind the debuff. Equip a Hell's Hairpin for best performance.
  • Flagellant - Can easily recover from shuffles in a single step to the front, and his bleeds can bypass PROT stacks across enemies. Good emergency heals and Stress relief, too.

Discouraged Heroes[edit | edit source]

These heroes usually have limited position function and can be crippled by shuffles.

  • Leper - Powerless if forced to the back, and has to trudge forward one square at a time.
  • Arbalest/Musketeer - Powerless if forced to the front. The hectic fight may make it hard find an opportunity to Mark.
  • Vestal - Loses access to healing skills if forced forward. If the rest of your party can reposition to compensate, she can be viable.

Ancestral Trinkets[edit | edit source]

The main reason for hunting down this monstrous creature is because it carries 5 unique Ancestral-rarity trinkets. Every time the Shambler is slain it will drop 1 of the 5 trinkets below. Since all ancestor trinkets are unique, once you have all 5 of these, it will start dropping gems instead. The trinkets are dropped regardless of the Shambler's difficulty level, meaning there is almost no reason to go hunting for a Champion-level Shambler.

Ancestor's Map Ancestor's Bottle Ancestor's Candle Ancestor's Tentacle Idol Ancestor's Scroll
Ancestor Map.png Ancestor Bottle.png Ancestor Candle.png Ancestor Idol.png Ancestor Scroll.png
  • +25% Trap Disarm Chance
  • +25% Scouting Chance
  • +10% Stress
  • +25% MAX HP
  • +50% Food Consumed
  • +10% Stress
  • +15% DMG if Torch above 50
  • +2 SPD if Torch above 50
  • +5 DODGE if Torch above 50
  • +10% Stress
  • +20% Virtue Chance
  • +8% Death Blow Resist
  • +25% Healing Skills
  • +25% Stress Skills
  • +10% Stress

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Since the Shambler fight is starts at 0 torchlight and cannot be illuminated during the battle, enemy abilities are buffed +25% DMG, +5% CRIT, +12.5 ACC). The tables below show the unbuffed numbers.

Shambler[edit | edit source]

Apprentice Level
Skill Name Range Rank Target Accuracy Crit
Chance
Damage Effect
(Target)
Effect
(Self)
Obdurous Advancement Melee 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 82.5% 2% 1 Poptext bleed.png 100% Bleed 2
New game plus save icon.png Summon 2 Shambler Tentacles*
Poptext move.png Forward 1
Undulating Withdrawal Ranged 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 82.5% 2% 1 Poptext poison.png 100% Blight 2
New game plus save icon.png Summon 2 Shambler Tentacles*
Poptext move.png Back 1
Stentorious Lament Ranged 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 82.5% 2% 1 Tray afflicted.png Stress +10
Poptext move.png 80% Shuffle Party

Shambler Tentacle[edit | edit source]

Apprentice Level
Skill Name Range Rank Target Accuracy Crit
Chance
Damage Effect
(Target)
Effect
(Self)
Clapperclaw Melee 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4 82.5% 2% 2-4 Tray afflicted.png Stress +10 Poptext buff.png Buff: +20 ACC, +5% CRIT,
+50% DMG, +3 SPD, +25% PROT

Shambler[edit | edit source]

Veteran Level
Skill Name Range Rank Target Accuracy Crit
Chance
Damage Effect
(Target)
Effect
(Self)
Obdurous Advancement Melee 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 88.75% 6% 1-2 Poptext bleed.png 120% Bleed 3
New game plus save icon.png Summon 2 Shambler Tentacles*
Poptext move.png Forward 1
Undulating Withdrawal Ranged 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 88.75% 6% 1-2 Poptext poison.png 120% Blight 3
New game plus save icon.png Summon 2 Shambler Tentacles*
Poptext move.png Back 1
Stentorious Lament Ranged 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 92.5% 6% 1-2 Tray afflicted.png Stress +10
Poptext move.png 90% Shuffle Party

Shambler Tentacle[edit | edit source]

Veteran Level
Skill Name Range Rank Target Accuracy Crit
Chance
Damage Effect
(Target)
Effect
(Self)
Clapperclaw Melee 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4 88.75% 6% 3-5 Tray afflicted.png Stress +10 Poptext buff.png Buff: +20 ACC, +5% CRIT,
+50% DMG, +3 SPD, +25% PROT

Shambler[edit | edit source]

Champion Level
Skill Name Range Rank Target Accuracy Crit
Chance
Damage Effect
(Target)
Effect
(Self)
Obdurous Advancement Melee 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 102.5% 9% 1-3 Poptext bleed.png 140% Bleed 4
New game plus save icon.png Summon 2 Shambler Tentacles*
Poptext move.png Forward 1
Undulating Withdrawal Ranged 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 102.5% 9% 1-3 Poptext poison.png 140% Blight 4
New game plus save icon.png Summon 2 Shambler Tentacles*
Poptext move.png Back 1
Stentorious Lament Ranged 1,2,3,4 1+2+3+4 100% 9% 1-3 Tray afflicted.png Stress +10
Poptext move.png 100% Shuffle Party

Shambler Tentacle[edit | edit source]

Champion Level
Skill Name Range Rank Target Accuracy Crit
Chance
Damage Effect
(Target)
Effect
(Self)
Clapperclaw Melee 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4 102.5% 9% 4-7 Tray afflicted.png Stress +10 Poptext buff.png Buff: +20 ACC, +5% CRIT,
+50% DMG, +3 SPD, +25% PROT

* Summoning will occur whether the ability lands or not.

Related Enemies[edit | edit source]

Wandering Bosses[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • In the early access and the original release the Shambler left a normal Corpse after it was killed instead of a large one, despite it taking up 2 Ranks during a fight.
  • As evidenced by its corpse, the Shambler has purple blood.
  • The Shuffling Horror, the boss from the first Darkest Dungeon quest, "We Are the Flame," is a stronger, corrupted version of the Shambler. This version does not summon tentacles, but instead has another unit guarding it.
  • The Shambler features in two Journals that can be found in the game. The first, "Journal of Darius, Highwayman", ends with Darius' party being ambushed and slaughtered by a Shambler. The other one, "The Blackest of Fates", documents the fate of a party whose occultist, "thrice damned Mizir", activated a Shambler Altar and unleashed a Shambler upon everyone.
  • As of the Inhuman Bondage update, the Shambler will physically drag the party into another dimension. The area resembles a violet galaxy and functions the same as Pitch Black.
  • The name "Shambler" likely comes from the "Dimensional Shambler", one of HP Lovecraft's creations. The Dimensional Shambler is a creature that comes from another dimension and attacks its prey by using a form of hypnosis to make the victim believe they've been dragged into another plane of existence. However the appearance of the Shambler does not match the description given of the Dimensional Shamblers, as they are mostly humanoid. Rather the Shambler's appearance closely resembles the description given of the Shoggoth, said to be "vaster than any subway train— a shapeless congeries of protoplasmic bubbles, faintly self-luminous, and with myriads of temporary eyes forming and un-forming.[1]"
  • Another reference to Lovecraft is when the narrator calls it a "Star-Spawned horror." In Lovecraft's work the Star Spawn are another name for the Cthulhi, which are spawn of the Great Old One Cthulhu, one of the central beings of Lovecraft's mythos.


view
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Roaming / Event Shambler MiniScrollpip.png Collector MiniScrollpip.png FanaticThe Crimson Court DLC MiniScrollpip.png Thing from the StarsExclusive to The Color of Madness DLC MiniScrollpip.png Shrieker MiniScrollpip.png Brigand Vvulf
Boss Minions Cauldron MiniScrollpip.png Brigand Matchman MiniScrollpip.png Shambler MiniScrollpip.png Wilbur MiniScrollpip.png Drowned Anchorman MiniScrollpip.png Shrieker's Nest MiniScrollpip.png Barrel O' Bombs
CourtyardThe Crimson Court DLC Baron MiniScrollpip.png Viscount MiniScrollpip.png Countess MiniScrollpip.png Crocodilian MiniScrollpip.png Garden Guardian
FarmsteadExclusive to The Color of Madness DLC Miller MiniScrollpip.png Fracture MiniScrollpip.png Sleeper
Darkest DungeonContains spoilers for the Darkest Dungeon
Spoilers
Shuffling Horror MiniScrollpip.png Templar Impaler MiniScrollpip.png Templar Warlord MiniScrollpip.png Mammoth Cyst MiniScrollpip.png Ancestor MiniScrollpip.png Heart of Darkness
  1. H. P. Lovecraft, At The Mountains of Madness