|“||Discarded shell of a Watcher Knight, re-animated by a swarm of infected flies. When these silent warriors fall in battle, their bodies split open and strange bugs come flying out. I wonder, what will come flying out of me when I die? Will my hopes and fears drift away into the darkness?||„|
|~ The Hunter's Guide on the Watcher Knights.|
The Watcher Knights are supporting antagonists and bosses in Hollow Knight. They are the elite bodyguards of Lurien the Watcher, one of the three Dreamers of Hallownest. Much like the rest of the infected, they have gone feral and have turned against their master and the rest of society.
When Lurien went in a permanent rest with the other Dreamers to seal the Black Egg Temple to keep the infected Hollow Knight at bay, the Watcher Knights were tasked in defending the spire that Lurien lived in. Following the Infection's return, only six of the knights were still alive by then and have mysteriously burst from their shells into a swarm of infected flies. When trespassers appear, the flies reanimate the shells to attack everyone who enters the Watcher's Spire regardless of their affiliation with Lurien.
Located in the Watcher's Spire in the City of Tears, the Watcher Knights serve as the final obstacle before the Knight can access Lurien. When the Knight enters the arena, the fly swarm reanimates one Watcher Knight, attacking by slashing its nail, or by curling into a ball, moving across the arena either by rolling on the ground or by bouncing twice. A few seconds go by before a second knight reanimates, followed by a third once one of the two goes down.
They are immune to Nail attacks while curled in a ball, although Spells can still damage them while they are attacking. Since the Watcher Knights attack in twos for all six, they can be unpredictable in nature as they can move at a fast pace while curled and their nails have a long range. Several charms, such as Quick Focus and Stalwart Shell, can help the Knight recover quicker, while Fragile Strength and Shaman Stone can boost their attacks and Spells against the Watcher Knights. Defeating all six Watcher Knights unlocks the doors of the room, granting the Knight access to the top of the Watcher's Spire where Lurien lays at rest. Absorbing him and the other two Dreamers will open the seal to the Black Egg Temple.
- A part of the ceiling is breakable directly left to the arena, revealing a secret room containing the anchoring for a chandelier. Cutting the wire drops the chandelier onto one of the Watcher Knight shells, permanently crushing it, and reducing the number of knights to five.
- The Watcher Knights are referred to as "Black Knights" in the game's files and in early development.
- In the beta versions of the game, the Watcher Knights had the ability to roll backwards to evade attacks.
- Combined, the Watcher Knights have the most health out of every boss outside of Godhome, excluding the White Defender, Nightmare King Grimm, and The Radiance.
- In the Lifeblood update, the Watcher Knight shells have been rearranged.
- The battle with the Watcher Knights is accompanied by False Knight's theme.