Guardian raids in Lost Ark are the culmination of all of your hard work leveling and developing your character. As with most end-game content, Lost Ark Guardian Raids are challenging and require cooperation and skill to tackle effectively. You’ll need to memorize each Guardian’s abilities and attacks, and the game keeps the Guardian’s health bar hidden, so you have to maximize your damage to kill the boss before time runs out.
Each Guardian Raid has a minimum item level requirement, and you can use the materials the boss drops to increase your item level and progress through each Guardian Raid sequentially. That doesn’t mean every fight has the same difficulty level—some guardians have insta-kill mechanics or other tricks that can result in a party wipe. Working together with your party members and learning a boss’s weak point is key to defeating the guardian and moving on to the next tier.
How to Unlock Guardian Raids
To unlock Guardian Raids, you need to build a level 50 character and complete the main storyline quest. Once you meet those two requirements, you can talk to Raid manager Seifeltz in Vern Castle to take the Guardian Raid Certificate Qualification test. The quest itself is pretty straightforward, and once you get the certificate, you’re free to start your first Lost Ark Guardian Raid.
Check your item level before starting a raid—you may be able to unlock Guardian Raids but not have a suitable item level to begin a guardian raid.
The best way to raise your item level in the early end game is to complete Chaos Dungeons. These give you the upgrade materials for your weapons, armor, and gems that raise your item level and let you participate in more difficult end-game events. They’re also the best way to earn the engraving books, jewelry, and gems you need to tackle guardians effectively.
How Raids Work
Once you unlock guardian raids, you’ll see a red banner indicating the location of a Raid Notice board in every major city. Each Lost Ark guardian raid consists of a boss fight against a single guardian. Each guardian drops a Guardian Soul, which you can exchange for honing materials, engraving books, ability stones, and accessories after the event.
While you can tackle a guardian raid solo, in most cases teaming up with other players is a more efficient way to defeat the boss within the time limit. If you’re struggling to understand how various guardian raids in Lost Ark work, check out our guide to UI and online gaming to help you make sense of common MMO mechanics and set up your UI correctly.
Daily Raid Limits
While there isn’t a hard cap on how many guardian raids you can do per day, you have a limit on how many Guardian Souls you can save. The Raid Notice Board has two circular slots in the top left that represent Guardian Soul slots. As long as you have a slot empty, you can fill it with a soul, but be careful—defeating a guardian without collecting their soul still counts towards the daily limit, so make a special note to loot the soul as soon as it appears.
When the slots are full, you can still enter raids but won’t get any rewards from the bosses. The good news is that failing a guardian raid won’t fill a soul slot, so you can try to clear a boss as often as you need to without any penalty.
Guardian Soul slots refresh once daily during the server reset, meaning you can harvest a maximum of two souls per day.
Raid levels indicate difficulty, with higher levels being more difficult than lower ones. Each level has four Guardian Raids; you’ll need to defeat each guardian at least once to unlock the next level. When you first start Guardian Raids, you’ll only have access to raid level 1, and you’ll need to defeat all the level 1 guardians to access level 2 raids.
Most MMOs with daily events require people to log in daily to prevent falling behind. Lost Ark operates slightly differently and gives players a catch-up mechanism in case you can’t play for several days.
The rest bar is a progress bar that has a 100-point capacity. Every time you have unfilled guardian soul slots during a server reset, you get ten rest bonus points, up to a max of 100. When you kill a guardian while having at least 20 rest points, you get an extra guardian soul from the fight.
Rest bonuses have several limitations to prevent abuse. You can still only get souls from your first two guardian kills per day, and the extra rest bonus souls drop along with these normal daily souls. Effectively, this means you can only get a maximum of four souls (two normal + two bonus) per day, no matter how many rest bonus points you have.
To keep Lost Ark raids challenging, each fight has several restrictions that apply to all Guardian Raids (unless explicitly stated otherwise). These include:
Minimum item level requirement: The main gating mechanism of Guardian Raids is your item level, which is a combination of the average level of your armor and weapons, excluding ability stones and accessories. Generally, higher item-level requirements mean a more difficult boss fight.
Time limit: Your team has 20 minutes from entering the raid to defeat the boss. Your damage per second and crowd control skills need to be on point, especially as some bosses have mechanics that force players to waste time. Failing to kill the guardian within the time limit results in a wipe and failed attempt.
Respawn limit: Most guardian fights limit the team to three respawns across the group. If you use up all your respawns, the fight will end in a wipe.
Item limits: Players can only use Battle items during a raid instance and only one item per category. To make things even trickier, each battle item has a limited amount of uses per instance, though higher rarity items have more uses per run than lower rarity ones.
Tier 1 Guardian Raids
Tier 1 raids exist as an introduction to Lost Ark Guardian Raids to showcase unique mechanics you’ll see in later raids. Knowing how to tackle these is essential to progressing to higher tier levels.
Raid Level 1
You’ll need to beat all of the level 1 guardians before moving onto level 2, but it’s worthwhile doing them in order of item level.
Minimum level: 302
Ur’Nil uses close-range attacks and has a fire area of effect attack during its enrage phase. The fight introduces you to counter-attack, enrage, and escape mechanics.
Minimum level: 340
Lumerus has a combination of close- and long-range area of effect (AoE) attacks. It also introduces the concept of an HP threshold—several attacks become stronger when Lumerus drops below 30% health. Having at least one class with a counter skill allows your team to take advantage of these stronger attacks.
Minimum level: 380
Icy Legoros has high movement speed and introduces you to the stagger mechanic, which slows down the boss and allows you to attack it with several combos.
Minimum level: 420
In addition to having a range of combos, knockback, and launch attacks, Vertus has three phases—the second phase begins when it becomes enraged, and the third after it passes a 30% threshold.
Raid Level 2
Almost all bosses from this level onwards have a three-phase mechanic. Loot drops are also higher and offer better rewards and engraving recipes.
Minimum level: 460
Chromanium is an armored guardian with powerful smash effects and several wide area of effect bubbles that seriously damage your team. Destroying its armor increases the damage it takes.
Minimum level: 500
Nacrasena has mostly close-range attacks but also has a devastating tail attack that can hit most of the group. Use stagger and destroy the tail with destruction bombs to limit damage before bringing it down.
Flame Fox Yoho
Minimum level: 540
Flame Fox Yoho has many fire attacks, including setting the ground on fire and burning on contact. Staggering extinguishes the flames, so that should be your top priority.
Minimum level: 580
Tytalos has a unique mechanic that uses a shock wave attack to damage the entire party unless you’ve got temporary invincibility from standing in a sandstorm for a few seconds. Standing in the sandstorm will give you a debuff along with the invincibility.
Tier 2 Guardian Raids
Raid Level 3
The raids in level 3 continue to increase in difficulty and introduce new mechanics.
Minimum level: 802
Positioning is essential in this Guardian Raid, as you can use its back jumps to force it into a wall and reduce its mobility.
Minimum level: 840
Helgaia evolves between phases, gaining new powers and mobility. Staggering at the right time can interrupt the evolution, but the window is extremely narrow and easy to miss.
Minimum level: 880
Calventus is one of the less complex Guardian Raids, with few tricky mechanics. However, he hits hard and can destroy armor with every attack, so bring a character with the cleanse skill.
Minimum level: 920
In addition to loads of standard attacks, Achates has an invisibility shield that protects it from all attacks. While the shield is up, it spawns four statues that drop colored orbs. You must destroy the statues and then throw the right color orbs at Achates to smash the shield.
Raid Level 4
This level of Lost Ark Guardian Raids reintroduces older guardians with some new gimmicks. You and other players must prepare the right items, abilities, and skills and coordinate to get past the higher-level raids in Lost Ark.
Minimum level: 960
Very similar to normal Helgaia, Frost Helgaia deals a lot more damage and applies Slow with every attack.
Minimum level 1,000
Along with its regular attacks, Lava Chromanium sets the ground on fire and applies burn on attack. It also has an HP threshold attack, Melting Core, which will target your group one by one with devastating attacks until you defeat it.
Minimum level: 1,040
Levanos has incredibly tough armor that negates almost all the damage you can do to it. Ensure your character has at least one skill with a weak point affix to remove Levanos’ armor.
Minimum level: 1,080
This Lost Ark Guardian Raid ups the difficulty dramatically and requires patience and effort to beat. Alberhastic has several forms with unique attacks, including a ground smash and skewer attack.
Tier 3 Guardian Raids
Raid Level 5
At level 5, you’ll face the toughest bosses yet that take incredible skill and preparation to beat.
Heavy Armor Nacrasena
Minimum level: 1,302
This upgraded version of Nacrasena has two armor-break sequences instead of one. As with the lower item-level raid, break the armor before hitting Nacrasena with every ounce of damage you have.
Minimum level: 1,325
Much less mechanically complex than other Lost Ark raids; just avoid standing in front of its devastating front-facing charges and AoEs.
Night Fox Yoho
Minimum level: 1,355
Night Fox Yoho spawns two foxes that drop defense orbs after you get them and can turn your character into a fox for a certain time. Focus on bringing down the summons before targeting the boss.
Minimum level: 1,385
At the capstone Lost Ark boss, Velganos moves fast, hits hard, and has numerous mechanics you need to avoid. Prepare with health potions and flares to help you bring him down before the time limit.
Tips and Tricks to Help You Complete Guardian Raids
Lost Ark guardians are fun fights but can feel frustrating if you’re unprepared. Simply meeting the item level requirement isn’t enough—you’ll need to bring the right items and abilities to face each boss.
To save time, ensure you understand the fight before trying it yourself. Check out our Lost Ark guides on preparing the right affixes and handling various fight mechanics. And once you’re done, check out our PC gaming news page to stay up to date on current and upcoming games.
Dane started off gaming at the tender age of 3 with the first Atari console. His favorite video game genres are turn-based RPGs (can I get a shout out for Tactics Ogre?) and fighting games. Read more...