Ranni the Witch’s questline in Elden Ring is one of the longest and most complex in the game. Unless you’re thorough with your exploration and talking with NPCs, it’s going to be quite easy to miss a step. Thankfully, we’ve got the information you need to complete Ranni’s questline and claim the Dark Moon Greatsword and the special ending, Age of the Stars.
It goes without saying that this guide will be full of spoilers. While I’ve done my best to avoid anything story-related, it does include names of locations and NPCs.
Ranni the Witch questline
Ranni’s questline in Elden Ring has you visiting several locations across the map. While most of it can be done before progressing through to the mid- to late-game, one area in particular is a bit difficult to deal with thanks to Scarlet Rot. Completing Ranni the Witch’s questline will reward you with the Dark Moon Greatsword and the ability to unlock the Age of the Stars ending.
Here is an overview of the steps you must take for Ranni’s quest:
- Visit Ranni at Ranni’s Rise
- Defeat Starscourge Radahn
- Find the Fingerslayer Blade in Nokron
- Ascend the Carian Study Hall and claim the item at the top of the Divine Tower
- Defeat a Baleful Shadow in Ainsel River
- Unlock the chest near Rennala
- Fight through the Lake of Rot
- Give Ranni the Dark Moon Ring
Church of Elleh
Ranni the Witch can first be met at the Church of Elleh at the start of the game after the player has unlocked Torrent, the spectral steed. Go to the Church of Elleh on the west coast of Limgrave and wait until night. She will appear on the church’s wall.
When asked, tell her that you can indeed summon the spectral steed. This will reward you with the Spirit Calling Bell, allowing you to summon Spirit Ashes.
Ranni the Witch’s questline continues with the player finding her in Ranni’s Rise, east of Caria Manor in Liurnia of the Lakes. In order for her to appear here, some prerequisites must be met.
- Defeat Rennala, Queen of the Full Moon (Raya Lucaria Academy)
- Defeat Royal Knight Loretta (Caria Manor)
If you have started the Radahn Festival in Caelid, you will need to defeat Starscourge Radahn before Ranni will appear. Resting at a Site of Grace in the Altus Plateau will also cause the festival to start.
Once the bosses are defeated and you’ve fought through Caria Manor, you can head to Ranni’s Rise along the west cliff. Use a Site of Grace to wait until night and head inside her tower and to the top. After speaking with Ranni, you will need to speak with War Counselor Iji, Blaidd, and Preceptor Seluvis.
You must speak with each NPC and then return to Ranni. With this done, you will be free to leave her tower. In the event she does not recruit you, go to the Roundtable Hold and talk with Rogier and then return to Ranni.
In the event you have not defeated Starscourge Radahn, that will be your next step in Ranni’s questline. You can either trot on down to Caelid and participate in the Radahn Festival at Redmane Castle or follow a more roundabout way by talking to a few NPCs. Here’s the NPC series of steps:
- Begin by heading to Siofra River via the elevator in the Mistwoods in Limgrave. When you reach the subterranean area, work toward Hallowhorn Grounds to find Blaidd and speak with him.
- Go and chat with Preceptor Seluvis in his tower near Ranni’s Rise. He will tell you about Sorceress Sellen.
- Visit Sorceress Sellen in the Waypoint Ruins in Limgrave. These ruins are in the east, along the cliff overlooking Mistwoods. Sellen will fill you in on some details about Radahn.
Now, go over to Caelid, head to Redmane Castle in the south, and participate in the Radahn Festival to defeat Starscourge Radahn. At this point, the stars will continue their movement and one will even fall to earth.
Nokron, Eternal City
With Starscourge Radahn defeated, you will need to find the star crash site in the Mistwoods, west of Fort Haight. Work your way down the hole in the ground to access Nokron, Eternal City. This underground city is where you can unlock the Mimic Tear Ashes. The item you need for Ranni’s questline is the Fingerslayer Blade. Find this item beneath the dead giant that’s sitting in a chair.
In order to get the Fingerslayer Blade from the chest, you will need to work your way through Nokron and out into the open, where you can see the giant across a chasm. Pass through the golden fog, defeat the boss, and cross the bridge to get to the Ancestral Woods behind the giant.
Stick to the left side of the Ancestral Woods to find a Site of Grace behind the giant. Drop down to the roof on the right and follow the ledges to the right. You’ll need to jump across several more ledges and roofs, fight some mimics, and cross a broken arch into a church.
Drop down into the lower level of the church, being careful not to get crushed by the huge ball. Go outside, down the stairs, and rest at the Night’s Sacred Ground Site of Grace. You’ll now be right across from the giant and the chest that contains the Fingerslayer Blade.
Be careful here, as the courtyard before the chest is full of mimics. Most of these will turn into soldiers, but one will turn into a giant! This is like many of the other trolls in the game, so hack at its ankles until it falls over or blast it from a distance with your spells or arrows. When you are safe to get the chest, open it up and claim the Fingerslayer Blade.
When you collect the blade, return to Ranni’s Rise to receive the Carian Inverted Statue. This will finally allow you to ascend the Carian Study Hall to reach the Divine Tower of Liurnia.
Carian Study Hall
With the Carian Inverted Statue in hand, head to the Carian Study Hall in Liurnia of the Lakes. Place the statue on the pedestal in the entrance of the study hall to cause the tower to invert. You must now work your way down the tower.
For this section, you will need to drop down the ledges, kill the hand spiders, and deal with Preceptor Miriam who will make another appearance. If you’ve fought Miriam before, the fight hasn’t changed much.
When you reach the bottom (technically the top) of the tower, open the door and head outside. Work your way across the bridge and up the Divine Tower. At the top, collect the Cursemark of Death. Go back to Ranni’s Rise to continue her quest.
At this point, you may be able to speak with Ranni again. However, to progress her quest, the next step will be to visit Renna’s Rise. This is the tower to the north of Ranni’s Rise. Go to the top and use the portal there to be transported to Ainsel River.
When you reach Ainsel River Main, look for an item on a nearby body to collect the Miniature Ranni item. Go to the nearest Site of Grace (Ainsel River Main) and use the “Talk to miniature Ranni” option repeatedly until Ranni speaks with you. Talk with Ranni until she asks you to kill a Baleful Shadow. You will now need to track down and kill this foe, which is found just after the Nokstella Waterfall Basin Site of Grace. Here's how to get to that location.
Start at the Ainsel River Main Site of Grace and follow the river west to the Uhl Palace Ruins. Go between the two giant statues on the right and continue through the tunnel as it slopes downward. Be careful of the ants on the ceiling and the ants on the left side of the tunnel. Run past the ants and continue following the river west.
You will reach a wall with a door on the left, pass through the door to enter Nokstella, Eternal City. Continue to follow the river west as it winds under the bridge. You will need to fight or run past a group of mimic slimes that use spears and some Nokstella soldiers on ants. At the end of the river will be an arch on your left that leads to a small building. Go inside the building and use the elevator to travel down.
Exit the elevator and rest at the Site of Grace in front of you, this is the Nokstella Waterfall Basin. To the south will be a tunnel, go through it being extremely careful of the basilisks. These frogs spew Death that will instantly kill you if the status bar fills up completely.
Get through the tunnel to enter a reddish area where you will find the Baleful Shadow. Defeat the Baleful Shadow using any means necessary to receive the Discarded Palace Key. Enter through the door to the southwest of the small area and ride the elevator down to reach the Lake of Rot. Activate the Lake of Rot Shoreside Site of Grace as you will come back here in just a moment.
With the Discarded Palace Key in hand, go to the Raya Lucaria Grand Library in Liurnia of the Lakes and open the chest beside Rennela. The chest contains the Dark Moon Ring, which you must now take through the Lake of Rot.
Lake of Rot
With the Dark Moon Ring in your inventory, head back to the Lake of Rot Shoreside Site of Grace which you should have activated after defeating the Baleful Shadow. If not, you will need to go back to Ainsel River and access it via the Nokstella Waterfall Basin.
The Lake of Rot is by no means an easy place to navigate. The entire area is full of Scarlet Rot, which means you should craft some Preserving Boluses to help you get across without losing too much health. If you need Sacramental Bud, plenty can be found outside the manor in Mt. Gelmir. This area also has several basilisks which spew Death.
From the Lake of Rot Shoreside Site of Grace, go down the slope to the edge of the rot and look out to the south to spot two massive statues, that is your goal. The only way to reach it is to wade through the Scarlet Rot, however, there are pressure plates along the way that raise up pathways for you to walk on.
Cross the Lake of Rot and enter the Grand Cloister. Just past the statues will be stairs on the left that take you down to a Site of Grace. From here, you will need to go down the stairs and use the crumbling ledges on the wall to reach the bottom of the temple where the Scarlet Rot flows left around a corner.
Carefully drop down the ledges and either fight or run past the pests. It's best to avoid them, as most of them will simply ignore you. Follow the rot around to the left to find a coffin teetering on the edge of the waterfall. Interact with the coffin to be transported to a boss fight against Astel, Naturalborn of the Void. This is one fight where you should seriously consider using the Mimic Tear Ashes.
After defeating Astel, Naturalborn of the Void, cross the large arena to the opposite side and take the elevator up to the Moonlight Altar. When you reach the top, head to the Cathedral of Manus Celes in the northeast and drop down the hole in the ground. Go through the tunnel to find Ranni. Interact with her to offer the Dark Moon Ring. Ranni will speak to you and offer you a reward, which is the mighty Dark Moon Greatsword.
The Dark Moon Greatsword requires 16 Strength, 11 Dexterity, and 38 Intellect in order to hold it effectively. Its weapon skill is called Moonlight Greatsword, which increases the weapon's magic attack and adds frost damage to the blade. Performing a charged heavy attack will send out a wave of moonlight at your foes. This is a great weapon for magic users, as it doesn't require that much Strength and actually scales off of your Intellect stat more than Strength and Dexterity.
With that, Ranni the Witch’s questline will be completed in Elden Ring. You will now be able to unlock the Age of the Stars ending, one of the many endings in the game. This is an extremely long and in-depth quest, but one that’s worth doing for the Dark Moon Greatsword and the ending. Be sure to check out the Shacknews Elden Ring strategy guide for more tips and quest guidance.