Dark Souls 3: How To Identify & Avoid Fighting Mimic Chests

Dark Souls 3, like its predecessors, has a vast variety of unpleasant surprises in store for the unwary. From weak enemies that can transform into relentless abominations to ambushes waiting to happen, the game rarely misses a chance to set a trap for the slacking player. After being caught off-guard the first couple of times, you learn not to expect mercy from the game at any point, but every now and then, an enemy or area will force you into a corner, and in all the haste and panic that ensues, trick you into to make a costly mistake, such as running past enemies to quickly grab the loot out of a seemingly innocent-looking chest.

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Loathsome beast!

Those who’ve played one or both of the first two games in the Dark Souls series probably knew to exercise caution around chests. While some of these are just regular chests that’ll reward you with items, others are known to sprout arms, legs and razor sharp teeth, dragging in and devouring unsuspecting players on being opened. The latter are called Mimics and they are every item-hoarder’s nightmare. Early in the game, being devoured by a Mimic will most surely kill your character. Even much later in the game, and this is if you’ve invested a good number of points in the Vigour attribute, it’ll bring you into an inch of death.

So, how does one tell a Mimic apart from a regular chest?

How To Tell A Mimic Apart From A Regular Chest

1. In the first two Dark Souls games, there were subtle visual hints in place for this purpose, and Dark Souls 3 seems to have stayed in line with that trend. There is a chain to the right of each chest. If it is curled inward and away from the front, the chest can be opened without fear of being munched on. If the chain is pointing outward and to the front, you’re looking at a Mimic. Note that this chain might not always be clearly visible.

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Regular chest (left) versus Mimic (right)

2. Another way to identify Mimics is to read any messages left by other players around chests. Unless you’re playing offline, you’re bound to find a “Mimic ahead” or “be wary of miscreant” message before almost every Mimic in the game.

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Or “be wary of liar”

3. The third way is to attack the chest once. If it is a Mimic, it will reveal itself, giving you a bit of time to wail away on it before it starts attacking you. The fight can be won easily with well-timed rolls and counterattacks. This method is the least ideal, as it will force you into a fight for which you might not be ready, though it certainly beats gambling away your character’s life on a whim.

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Getting Its Items

Once you’ve identified a Mimic, there are two ways you can go about dealing with it.

1. One is to kill it, of course, but while it is more satisfying to down the darned pest, it is a lot less safe. The Mimic’s attacks deal quite a bit of damage. Watch out for its kicks and grabs, in particular. The latter is likely to kill you, especially if you don’t have a significant investment in Vigour. When you’ve defeated a Mimic, it will drop whatever items it holds and, if you’re lucky, the Symbol of Avarice – a rare helmet that looks like the head of a Mimic. When equipped, the Symbol of Avarice eats away at your health at 10 points per second while giving a huge boost to item discovery (+100) and souls earned per kill (+50%).

Mimic-Dark-Souls-3

You will need a little space for the fight and not all situations can guarantee the man-eating chest won’t be joined by another enemy, which is where the second, risk-free solution comes in.

2. To get your item from a Mimic chest without having to fight it, chuck an Undead Hunter Charm at it. The item can be found at a few locations early in the game or bought from the Shrine Handmaid for 500 souls, provided you’ve give her Paladin’s Ashes.

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The item will temporarily pacify the Mimic, causing it to open its mouth and allowing you to take any trinkets that it has to offer, including the aforementioned Symbol of Avarice. After a while, the Mimic will return to its chest form. Players have been known to use this to get the Symbol of Avarice to drop, returning to the same chest and repeatedly using the Undead Hunter Charm.

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Pacifying a Mimic chest and retrieving items using the Undead Hunter Charm

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  • Patrick Lofton

    Interestingly enough I once left the game in front of a chest in Cathedral after I’d cleared the enemies to go to the restroom. When I came back and sat down I looked up and thought my eyes were playing tricks on me… I thought I saw the latch of the chest sigh. The chain for this chest is hidden so you can’t see it.

    I watched further and sure enough, I realized that the mouth of the chest would very slightly rise and fall every 10-15 seconds as if it were breathing. So there you go, even if the chain is not visible you can watch a chest for around 15 seconds to see if the lid moves to tell if it’s a mimic.