Oceiros

Prince Lothric was born destined to be a Lord of Cinder, but who decided this destiny for him? Making a prince of the kingdom a King of Kindling is called the work of Lothric’s blood as well as the royalty’s dearest wish, and the head of the royalty is King Oceiros. In that case, he had brought a new life into the world for the sole purpose of making him an offering to the First Flame, a living ritual sacrifice. Prince Lothric was a tool, a propaganda piece, and nowhere is this more obvious than in the platinum holy sword forged expressly for his mission, clearly based on the sword emblazoned at the center of the kingdom’s coat of arms. He would represent his namesake as a Lord of Cinder and nothing more. A statue of the adult prince has already been erected in front of a barracks for this result. Kneeling down with a sword in-hand, the youngest son’s head points skyward as the sun shine upon his face. The symbolism is obvious. Prince Lothric is a loyal servant of the gods submitting to his holy duty preserving the fire. Much like the statues of the knights, this was intended to convey the ideal expected of its subject — and so often do ideals fail to live up to their standards.

Prince Lothric was born an invalid, and would remain so his whole life. But without this hindsight, Oceiros likely assumed that the boy would heal with time, perhaps genuinely believing that providence would smile on the child. Why the fervor in proclaiming the prince’s destiny to the public before he actually fulfilled his mission then? The King had a personal stake in his son’s success. The description for the Estus Ring confirms that the tragedy involving Gundyr eventually became a popular legend among the general public, but how would it sound to the royalty? Lothric is a nation that reveres the firelinking ritual and prides itself on serving as the stage for it, and yet the most popular king in its history is remembered by its populace for failing to become a Lord of Cinder? Whether Gundyr’s tale was beloved as a tearjerker or a joke, it is nevertheless a stain on the royal family’s reputation. And Oceiros grew up knowing that his blood was burdened by that dishonor.

Raised by holy women and flooded with propaganda all his life, the young prince unsurprisingly took to his tutelage concerning his royal duties. His personal guard wield shields blessed with Dark resistance. Despite what the localization claims, this blessing didn’t necessarily come from the Cathedral of the Deep and is more likely to have originated with the priests in Lothric, hence even his guards at the royal garden possess them. Naturally, these blessed shields bear the king’s personal crest, a bird gazing skywards — to be more accurate, “looking up to heaven” (天仰ぐ) with the meaning of revering or appealing to God. And this large bird is flying toward the heavens to reach one goal: a crown. Oceiros recognizes the Kings of Kindling as gods to admire and emulate, considering the firelinking which exorcises the Dark to be the highest, holiest, of honors. In that case, Gundyr could have only brought him shame. The royalty’s only contribution to this sacred mission is being facilitators for other heroes, producing no such champion of their own? The very idea must have frustrated Oceiros to no end.

Bulky iron great shield of knights of the Church of the Deep. Has a high cut rate against the Dark due to a blessing.

The great bird looking up to heaven which is boldly depicted on its face in gold is known as the crest of Lothric’s previous king.

It is no mystery as to why he is so obsessed with his family creating a firelinker. Everything from the king’s marriage to Gwynevere to the propaganda foretelling their son’s success linking the fire had been done to restore the royal family’s honor — more specifically, to assuage Oceiros’ injured ego. Rather than bet on a child turning Undead, he would leverage his position to wed a goddess and sire a son with her medial blood, allowing the royalty to inherit the power of a god; not just any god, but the king of the gods who went on to become the first Lord of Cinder. Oceiros had arranged everything to all but guarantee that he produced someone qualified to link the fire. But in the end, all of his efforts amounted to failure. The prince’s physical condition never recovered, making him incapable of wielding a sword let alone take on the trials to become a Lord of Cinder.

In that case, why didn’t King Oceiros simply have another one of his children take up the mantle or sire a new one? It was probably matter of sunk cost by that point. The monarch had already invested a great deal into Prince Lothric being the firelinker, going so far as to commission statues and inscriptions proclaiming his future success. Imagine his humiliation if he admit to the world that he put the cart before the horse, that his proclamation of his family’s firelinking hero was premature — that his family had failed a second time. Oceiros would never allow that to happen, and so the Lothric Royal Family degenerated to repulsive acts in order to create a qualified candidate. Considering that Lorian was likely raised to one day inherit the throne, cursing the prince to be joined with his younger brother was probably only performed out of desperation, but Oceiros’ questionable lengths still only succeeded in creating a monster out of his two sons. Even if Oceiros wanted to offer the elder sibling up in the other’s stead, he couldn’t now.

With these mounting failures, the king must have been desperate for a way out. And he ultimately found it at the Grand Archives. As part of his blood’s work, Oceiros came in contact with the heretical worship of Seath being spread amongst the scholars. But rather than reject the sacrilege of this cult, he was intrigued by its possibilities. This fascination with Seath had most likely begun even before cursing his sons. Part of the paledrake’s research did involve bonding souls — as manscorpians Tark and Najka perfectly demonstrated in Dark Souls II — so the twin prince’s curse is more than likely an imperfect application of this research. But if it was, the failure didn’t result in Oceiros losing faith in using Seath’s works so much as faith in using humans at all. The king is described as having been entranced by dragons in his later years, and it shows. Lothric soldiers bear the image of a white dragon on their wooden shields, not the lion. Blue Stoneplate Rings imbued with the power of sorcery were given to his royal guards. And the king himself wore a scale-hide ring crowned with a blue dragon scale.

Soul of Bewitched King Oceiros. One of the atypical souls tinged with power.

Can either acquire a vast amount of souls by using it or extract its power via molding.

It is said that the king going mad in the work of the blood of Lothric was connected to the heresy of the Great Archives. That was the warped faith of the white dragon Seath.

Enchanted as he was, Ocerios was naturally dubbed the “Bewitched King” (妖王) for his obsession. Much like Seath and Logan before him, Oceiros had been gripped by deep-seated delusions that made him lose reason, convinced that dragons and specifically Seath would solve his problems. It is no surprise then that many assassins were sent after the king, presumably from members of his own court fearing that his ability to rule was compromised. But all of them failed to assassinate the Consumed King, who attributed his survival to the “divine protection” of the dragon scale he wore on his finger — in fairness, the ring does have the power to reduce damage from backstabs that his assassins had almost surely attempted, echoing the protection of a dragon’s scaly back. But Oceiros’ unhealthy obsession still remained. The sorcery staff he uses to cast a lethal silver fog similar to Pestilent Mist as well as petrifying crystals makes it clear that he too has fully converted to his library’s perverse cult of reason.

According to the original description for White Dragon Breath, Oceiros wasn’t just “edified” by Logan’s known sympathy for Seath and recreation of their god’s art through his nude research; he acquired the same “enlightenment” as the sage. If we encounter Oceiros, we find that he has turned himself into a scaleless archdragon like Seath, complete with the same petrifying crystal breath as the boss faced in the original Dark Souls. (DS1) As the sorcery’s description relates, that breath was the result of the Consumed King’s delusions. And as a white dragon, the king has shed himself of clothing. While concept art portrays him as still wearing the Dragonscale Ring, he has discarded it since entering the royal garden, leaving it to be collected by some other now deceased individual we can come across. All of this indicates that the transformation was just another development of Oceiros’ warped worship of dragons, namely Seath.

Sorcery resulting from the Bewitched King Oceiros’ deep-seated delusions.

Fires the crystal breath of White Dragon Seath. Crystal breath pierces.

It is said that Big Hat once sympathized with the white dragon and, at the end of his naked research, made the art of that god his own. Oceiros probably knew that and also acquired enlightenment.

Seath was the product of very specific, if random, circumstances after conception. In order for Oceiros to copy him, he would need to replicate the magical environment while inducing a similarly radical physical development. Lothric was certainly familiar with the draconification performed at Archdragon Peak. And as observed with the gif for his soul, Oceiros has been imbued with the power of moonlight to his very core. Not only that, the existence of resentful spirits of the paledrake provided him the opportunity to absorb these dregs into his own soul. By undergoing a draconification heavily influenced by Seath’s soul, Oceiros could transform into an archdragon with a moonlight affinity, resulting in a body bearing the same traits that the paledrake was born with despite retaining a more humanoid skeleton. This is why we can create the Moonlight Greatsword — a weapon previously only derived from Seath’s body or soul — from the soul of the Consumed King. His fellow heretics at the Grand Archives probably weren’t the ones to engineer this transformation, however.

As the wretches of Irithyll Dungeon illustrate, Sulyvahn was also interested in draconification at one point. How convenient that the Pontiff was experimenting with turning humans into scaleless white moonlight archdragons around the same time that the king of the neighboring country actually made himself into one, doubly so when said king had collaborate with the sorcerer several times in the past. Oceiros had most likely reached out to his longtime ally for help with his plan beforehand. It was certainly a worthwhile endeavor. The ever-curious polymath could invent never-before-seen magic, and help preserve the First Flame while doing it; the Pontiff need hear no more. And after much trial and error, the sorcerer perfected moonlight draconification and shared the knowledge with the King so he could perform it on himself — the results speak for themselves. All that said, Oceiros wasn’t emulating the dragon god merely for the sake of fanatical adoration or crazed whimsy.

Before she disappeared, the Queen of Lothric gave birth to their youngest son whom the mad king calls a dragon child, indicating that he was only conceived after his father’s transformation. This also comes with darker implications concerning the nature of his mother’s pregnancy, making it likely that the queen was forced to carry the baby to term. She simply left afterward, so she probably didn’t have the opportunity to flee until she provided her husband with the child. Once her womb fulfilled its purpose, continuing to keep her there was of no concern to the king. Oceiros has since taken the child and sequestered himself within the old temple deep in the royal garden where he obsesses over the baby, considering the boy his “everything”. The reason is obvious.

Recall that the Consumed King only indulged in the scholars’ heresy as part of his efforts to produce a Lord of Cinder from his family. All of this madness was done for the holy goal of firelinking, which is likely why the boss sports vaguely angelic wings and the internal name “Dragon Angel”. (竜の御使い) Oceiros was still a servant of the gods; he simply redirected his efforts to producing a child with the power of a moonlight dragon. Surely, a child with blood of both a medial and a dragon would have all the power to qualify as a firelinker without any health issues. The mad king just had to remove human blood from the equation. This faulty thinking is probably why the babe is named “Ocelotte”, or “Little Oce” in reference to his father’s new form that he presumably inherited to some degree. The same can be said for him squatting in ruins linked to the firelinking and ultimately leading to Firelink Shrine — the sign of a madman giddily anticipating a newborn child maturing into someone ready to take on the Soul of Cinder anytime now.

Putting all of his chips on Ocelotte is, of course, an admission that Prince Lothric is a failure as a firelinker, but the Consumed King clearly no longer cares about optics at this point. In his deluded state, producing a Lord of Cinder is all that matters, so much so that the king is paranoid about others stealing his accomplishment. Aside from his personal guards, Oceiros has isolated himself from everyone and hasn’t dealt with the going-ons of his kingdom for some time. When confronted, the Consumed King immediately assumes that we are some enemy who’s “finally” recognized Ocelotte’s power and seeks to steal the child from him. In reality, no one seems to care.

Ah, you fools. Finally noticed, did you? The power of my beloved Ocelotte, a dragon child. But, he won’t go. This child is everything to me.

Assassins were still being sent after the Consumed King’s life, as we find Eastern spies tasked with slaying the king dead in the garden, but nowhere is there even a hint of anyone attempting to kidnap the child at any point. Legally, Oceiros was still King, so he would need to be killed or forcibly removed before a new government could be formed. Whether Ocelotte could fulfill the king’s dream was irrelevant to those concerned for the kingdom’s future. As the current civil war raging throughout the kingdom shows, the power vacuum that the king created was the bigger issue. In all likelihood, King Oceiros plans to return to the public once his child has ripened into a suitable offering for the First Flame. In the meantime, his kingdom has collapsed as various factions vie for control, hence why item descriptions often reference him as the previous or former king despite there being no successor. It may also be why his original name is “Osroes” (オスロエス) — Osroes I was a Parthian king whose reign was briefly interrupted by war.

However, Oceiros is unable to confirm his child’s condition. Even though the king is clearly holding the boy in his hands, Ocelotte himself is invisible. This is why the description for the Moonlight Greatsword claims that the king couldn’t “see” the moonlight he had been chasing after. Even after all his efforts to create a half-dragon bearing the power of moonlight, Oceiros has never actually seen the fruits of his labor. And even whilst protecting him during his boss battle, the white dragon asks Ocelotte’s whereabouts, goading the baby to reveal himself for the implicit purpose of showing off his amazing dragon power. The Japanese dialogue makes it clear that the Consumed King is slowly losing patience with the boy, which peaks once our attacks force the white dragon to drop his staff. Furious at a baby ignoring him, the mad king smashes the child he coveted so dearly into the ground and continues the battle like a wild animal in a blind rage, fighting on all fours without a weapon.

Legendary dragon weapon associated with the white dragon Seath.

Unleashes a wave of moonlight by charging the strong attack to its limit.

The previous king Oceiros chased after the moonlight in his deep-seated delusions. But he couldn’t even see it.

… Ah, my beloved Ocelotte. Where are you? Where did you go? Come out. There is nothing to be afraid of. After all, you are a dragon child, born that. So, come now, Ocelotte. Ocelotte.

Many fans have suggested that Oceiros doesn’t actually kill Ocelotte, some positing that the Queen of Lothric took the baby with her when she left. It is true that Ocelotte’s invisibility makes it feasible for the mad king to be cradling nothing in his arms. However, given the circumstances, it is unlikely that the queen was either willing or able to take her newborn son away. Did she really want to risk her husband sending people after the child he was so obsessed with when she clearly just wanted to escape? Highly unlikely. We may not see the child, but we can hear him crying throughout the entire boss fight, before entering the boss room even. The baby also reacts when staggering his father for the second time, so these wails are completely diegetic. If the mad king is just hallucinating, why do we share in his hallucination? Moreover, Oceiros smashing his seemingly empty hand into the ground causes a small magical explosion on the spot, so something is definitely there. And so, Ocelotte’s apparent invisibility is probably soft self-censorship by FromSoftware.

Cut content confirms that the developers had originally planned for Oceiros to hold an infant. This fully-rendered baby model would then be visibly smashed into the ground repeatedly until it was just a crushed corpse plastered across the palm of the king’s hand, all of it accompanied by the sounds of the babe’s wails of agony and squishing flesh. This already disturbing scene may have been deemed too graphic, forcing the developers to tone it down. But rather than cut the whole thing outright, they compromised. The event would still occur, but the actual baby would be invisible. DS1 had already introduced a dragon-medial crossbreed capable of total invisibility, so it isn’t unfeasible for Ocelotte to perform something similar. And by allowing the invisible baby to continue the occasional cry after seemingly being crushed, the scene is left ambiguous enough to not impact the game’s age rating. Therefore, Ocelotte is just casting magic on himself, perhaps unknowingly. Maybe this is a testament to his power, but Oceiros expects a baby to understand him and obey, resulting in a crushed dream left to slowly die.