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For the Godmaster Icon Godmaster variant, see here.
Ferocious but extremely social creature. Becomes aggressive if not able to mingle with its own kind.

I hear this beast crying out sometimes as I prowl the caverns, although I've never actually laid eyes on it. Who or what is it calling for? As far as I can tell, its voice is never answered.

Behavior and Tactics

The Brooding Mawlek uses the following attacks:

  • Slash: Brooding Mawlek will use its claws to perform a downward slash towards the Knight. They only use this attack if the Knight gets too close and will use it in conjunction with other attacks.
  • Spit: Brooding Mawlek will spit a blobs of infection in a parabolic arcs at regular intervals. These blobs fly towards whichever side of the arena the Knight happens to be standing on. This attack can happen in conjunction with the Slash Attack.
  • Leap: Brooding Mawlek leaps to the Knight's location, landing where the Knight was at the beginning of their leap. Then, they immediately follow that leap with a jump back to the center of the arena.
  • Vomit: Brooding Mawlek will shoot a multitude of blobs of infection in a parabolic arc simultaneously. These blobs fly towards whichever side of the arena the Knight happens to be standing on at the time.

Hollow Knight Boss Discussion - Brooding Mawlek

Hollow Knight Boss Discussion - Brooding Mawlek

Brooding Mawlek Boss Guide Video

Without reach enhancement Charms, Brooding Mawlek may retaliate when hit, so a solid strategy is to hit them a few times and move away quickly when Brooding Mawlek raises their claw. It's also possible to jump over the boss, downstriking them to get to the other side.

To dodge Brooding Mawlek's Leap, the player needs to run quickly in whichever direction they have space to move. This is also an opportunity to hit Brooding Mawlek, which cannot spit or slash while in the air.

If the player has managed to obtain the Baldur Shell charm and Nail Art: Cyclone Slash, it's possible to chip away at Brooding Mawlek's health with the edge of Cyclone Slash and use the SOUL gained from the attack to heal safely inside Baldur Shell. While using Baldur Shell, the Knight can also enter into the body of Brooding Mawlek without taking damage, allowing the Knight to heal while Brooding Mawlek attacks.

When Brooding Mawlek uses the Vomit attack, it is possible to safely dash over them with the Mothwing Cloak before the acid comes down. There are also some small safe spots in between the projectiles.

If the player has the charm, Sharp Shadow, it can be used to dash through Brooding Mawlek and deal  damage.

Another Brooding Mawlek is fought as part of the Trial of the Fool in the Colosseum of Fools in a very tight area where dodging their attacks is much more difficult.

Dream Nail Dialogue
  • Where...Where are they...?
  • ...Do they hear me...?
  • ...Alone...Alone...


Brooding Mawlek is found in the Forgotten Crossroads beyond a wall jump section in a blocked room to the left of the vertical shaft filled with Gruzzers and Crawlids. Defeating it rewards a Mask Shard.

Despite being "inaccessible" at the beginning, it is possible to reach by nail-jumping on the spikes with downward strikes.

Another Brooding Mawlek can be fought in the Colosseum of Fools.


Gameplay Demonstration - Brooding Mawlek

Gameplay Demonstration - Brooding Mawlek

  • Due to the Hunter's notes on the Brooding Mawlek and the many Mawlek corpses that can be found in the room before and in the room Brooding Mawlek is confronted, it is suggested that Brooding Mawlek is the last "Greater" Mawlek alive within its natural habitat, as one is kept in captivity in the Colosseum of Fools. Besides that, the only other Mawleks ecountered in Hallownest are smaller Lesser Mawleks and mutated Mawlurks.
  • The Brooding Mawlek was the second mini-boss revealed in a Kickstarter update as an optional boss.