Demonic Spiders: Dark Souls

Almost every single basic mook in Dark Souls would qualify as a Demonic Spider in any other game (and you are very likely to die a few times during the tutorial) than this one, but there are some that stand out to the point of making you want to punch the screen in frustration. Without further ado, here are some of those Demonic Spiders:
  • The Basilisks who were immediately notorious after the release of the game. They have a breath attack which inflicts Curse, the most debilitating status effect in the game. The way status effects work, you have a meter that fills up as you are exposed to something that has a status effect. Players in their first play through will likely have zero resistance against curse, meaning the meter will fill up in about a second, almost instantly if you get caught in the cloud created by two of them. Curse kills the player instantly. When players revive, their health is permanently halved, even if they die again. Getting cursed removed is a quest in and of itself.
  • The Undead Balder Knights, who are very swift with their sword strikes, reliable shield, and above all, the ability to parry you. For beginning players, they're almost akin to a Miniboss, due to the low damage players will be dealing initially. The sole fact that they can parry attacks is frightening, as your mistakes are often punishable by instant death in this scenario.
  • The cat beasts in Darkroot Forest definitely count. There are three of them, each has hundreds of health, and they attack and move rapidly. Fortunately, however, their AI is easily exploited, with multiple locations that they can't pathfind through, and an easily discovered glitch that will get them stuck on a incline.
    • There's a small copse of trees in one corner of the area that you fight them in that they can't move into. Standing in it with a spear, occasionally popping out to lure them back over makes the fight with them more tedious than challenging.
  • The large Mushroom People, to the point of exaggeration. After fighting the small ones, who are a joke (they even fall flat on their faces when they try to attack you!), their funny appearence and their laughably slow speed, most people will probably underestimate them and charge right in. The same people will then find out that these things not only have a metric ton of HP, but that their punches hit hard enough to easily kill most characters in one or two hits.
  • Skeleton Wheels. They're one of the few enemies in the game that are always faster than the player, and considering their main method of attack is rolling at you, this is a big problem. Blocking doesn't work well either; without either godlike stamina or a ridiculously good shield, you'll find yourself out of stamina alarmingly quickly, and then out of health. They're also surprisingly good at correcting their course, so dodging them is difficult without light equipment and very good timing. Weaving while running is about the best way to dodge them...until you enter the basement of the Painted Realm of Ariamis, and find them in tight, narrow corridors...
  • The Crow Demons of the Painted Realm. Tend to show up in groups of two or three, hit surprisingly hard, and they can jump on you and peck you to death. Worse, if you're trying to obtain Souvenirs of Reprisal without going online, they are the only enemies that drop them, meaning you will have to fight these things repeatedly.
  • To finish off the trio of awful things in the Painted Realm, we have the Bloated Undead, hollows with a massive tumor replacing their head. They come in two versions, ones with torches that attack the same way as the regular Hollows with torches (which, as mentioned below, are Demonic Spiders on their own), and unarmed ones that chuck huge fireballs at you. However, the real danger comes after you kill them, because the tumor explodes into a huge poisonous cloud that pretty much instantly causes Toxic, unless you kill them with fire damage. So if you don't have any way to deal fire damage, you don't have a bow/magic to deal damage from a distance, and you don't have a weapon with a long enough reach to avoid the cloud, then you're in for a rough time, because there is no way to leave the Painted World without going though plenty of these guys.
  • The Serpent People residing in Sen's Fortress. Ridiculous strength, ridiculous damage reduction, and Sen's Fortress has at least one (more commonly a horde) literally around every corner.
    • Serpent Mages are worse. They throw lightning bolts at you, at a point in the game where your lightning resistance is probably nonexistent. Even worse, the game likes to put them in rooms where you have to cross narrow passageways and dodge swinging pendulums.
  • Channelers. They like to hide on platforms out of your reach and bombard you with Soul Arrows, which take off major chunks of health and tend to be very hard to dodge. Even worse, when you finally close in on them, they do their buffing dance and boost the attack power of anyone near them, including themselves (and they know how to use that trident). Even worse, they tend to teleport before you can finish them off, retreating about thirty feet away to rain Soul Arrows upon you once more.
  • In the same vicinity as the Channelers, the Crystal Hollows in Duke's Archives. They're fast, hit quite hard (and hit even harder after being buffed by a Channeler), usually attack in packs, and have a tendency to ambush you at the worst possible moment. It's likely you will die more often to them than the Serpent-Men of Sen's Fortress.
  • Torch Hollows. Take the basic enemy of the game, confiscate the broken and rusty sword it normally carries and give it a torch. Torch Hollows have earned as much respect and fear as the Wheel Skeletons to some players, and can do significant damage if it lands a full frenzy attack combo. The Depths bonfire typically hosts the numerous bloodstains of those that tend to forget how much of a threat the single Torch Hollow guarding the corridor out can be.
  • The Drakes in the Valley of Drakes. Massive health pool, powerful lightning breath, and an all-around unpredictable A.I. pattern where they tend to take flight as you're about to strike them. They're even more aggravating due to the fact that they're the only respawning source of Dragon Scales (Hydras and Zombie Dragons don't reappear until the next playthrough after killing them in the current one), and even then they drop it at an absurdly low rate.
  • The Black Knights. As befitting of their intimidating stature, they all wield weapons that can break your guard easily and deal huge damage, and they have one of the highest aggro-ranges of any enemy in the game, meaning you'll have to defeat them or they might follow you around even as you retreat to a safe bonfire, and due to a bug they can still attack you even while you're resting at a bonfire. If the AI is feeling particularly merciless then it's very easy for them to stun-lock you unless you're wearing incredibly heavy armour.
    • The Silver Knights of Anor Londo, while not as powerful as their black brethren, are no slouches, either. High defenses, impenetrable shields (much more pronounced with spear-wielding knights, as they will spend most of their time poking at you from behind their shield), and the ability to wield the massive Dragonslayer Bows, which can catapult you off your feet and are the main reason why one section of Anor Londo is widely hated by players.
  • The Sentinels guarding most open areas of Anor Londo. They have a considerable amount of health coupled with massive damage resistance, and their halberd strikes are guaranteed to stagger you no matter how much poise you stack. Even worse, their massive shield is impenetrable, meaning they'll be impervious to any kind of damage unless you hit their blind sides. Royal Sentinels crank this up by having even better defenses and two miracles: Wrath of the Gods and Great Heal. You'll have to strike them down hard and fast if you don't want them to regenerate and beat you to a pulp.
  • Titanite Demons. While they often qualify as minibosses since none of them (bar one in Lost Izalith) respawn, not so much in Sen's Fortress, where getting hit by a pendulum throws you into a pit filled with them, giving you a taste of horror as you deal puny damage to their rock-solid skin and titanic health while they're about to crush you in one hit.
    • What makes the Titanite Demon pit in Sen's Fortress even more aggravating is that the pit itself is filled with tar that hinders your movement, making it difficult to dodge their attacks.
  • Blighttown's boulder-wielding Infested Barbarians. The regular ones are bad enough, wielding Large Clubs with added poison effect that can push you off ledges (which means instant death), but boulder-wielding ones have access to surprisingly long-ranged attacks (by throwing said boulders), rolling their boulders, and just plain swinging them. Not only they do a lot of damage, they have a very large aggro radius and can easily knock you down even if you sport a high Poise stat. They're such a problem that even experienced players opt to use a longer detour to avoid aggroing them at all.
  • Maneater Shells, in all honesty, are quite slow, very unbalanced, which means any hit from nearly any weapon staggers them (if not outright flipping them upside down), and do drop valuable items (Twinkling Titanite for unique weapon upgrades, and Purging Stones to remedy Curse). What people often forget is that their attack power is, for all intents and purposes, through the roof. Their body—er, shell slam attack can also throw YOU off balance, and they tend to spam them in rapid succession. Like other examples, their most popular farming place, just before Seath's second boss fight, have six of them spawn in very close quarters. Getting swarmed by them is basically instant death for unwary players.
  • The Stone Knights in Darkroot Garden. While slow and cumbersome, most of your attacks at this point will bounce off their armor, and they will cast the Tranquil Walk Of Peace miracle, which slows the player's movement to a crawl. While this annoying spell is in effect, it's very common for the nearby Ent-like Demonic Foliage to swarm you and start hugging you to death.
    • On this particular example, if you happen to be infected with a Gravelord curse while in New Game+, stronger Red Phantom versions spawn en masse in the same area alongside their original counterparts, making crowd control nearly impossible and thus making one of the hardest areas to fight your way through. Case in point.
  • Giant Skeleton Beasts in Tomb of the Giants. They lurk in the dark, are particularly ferocious, bite off enormous amounts of your health, and players will be in for a nasty surprise if they count on these monsters to stay stunned after an initial attack. Oh, and they're usually paired with a Giant Skeleton archer/sword-wielder (which are already quite deadly by their own rights) or stay in group. Their presence makes the tomb a nightmare for low-level players.
  • After a heated fight against the Sanctuary Guardian and a nice little rest near Elizabeth, you'd think there wouldn't be too much to worry while traveling through the next area, which is a near-exact replica of the future hunting grounds for the Forest Hunter Covenant. Nope. Be prepared to be swarmed by aggressive tree-like scarecrows wielding pitchforks and even shears, although they come off as little more than Goddamn Bats by the time you access the DLC. What's truly dangerous is the Guardians that are nearby. See the Stone Knight example above? Replace their weapon with a massive axe that can throw you off your feet and make the ground explode, and you have yet another unnerving Mighty Glacier to watch out for, made even worse as they often come around by the time you're still busy fighting the scarecrows.
  • The Bloated Sorcerers in Oolacile Township. While they don't teleport away like the Channelers, they still pose a massive threat to you given their wide array of Abyss sorceries, near-instant poisoning if they reach out for you with their hand, and are usually backed up by several ferocious Bloatheads who don't show remorse in overwhelming you with sheer numbers.
  • The Humanity Sprites in the Chasm of the Abyss. Sure, they're relatively harmless if you don't approach them, and they don't actually have a lot of health. What most players forget is that they are very resistant to elemental weapons, and cause Collision Damage at an alarmingly high rate; if you're not careful when attempting to heal after the initial surprise, you'll end up swarmed by several of them.
  • Every single red phantom enemy spawned by a Gravelord infection becomes this. Increased health, attack power and, most importantly, aggro-range, causing them to chase you even more aggressively than you would initially assume, and sometimes before you even notice them. Woe betide a player who attempts New Game+7 and gets gravelorded along the way, as those same red phantoms will usually One-Hit Kill even players with maximum health.
    • May Gwyn bless your remains if you somehow desire to download the mods 'Perma-Gravelord' and 'Hyper-Aggressive Enemies' for added difficulty.

Dark Souls II

  • Most of the NPC summons are both this and Boss in Mook Clothing, particularly the NPC summons in the Lost Crowns DLC thanks to Artificial Brilliance. Jester Thomas from Crown of the Sunken King is probably the most infamous example thanks to his sky-high resistances, insane speed, and Pyromancy spam.
  • Pretty much all the boss enemies once they become Degraded Bossess become this trope instead. Especially once the Ruin Sentinels start showing up, often in tandem with groups of Stone Soldiers to ruin your day.
  • Darkdwellers in Old Man's Wharf are fast, have very high attack range thanks to their long arms, can cause Bleed, and love to ambush you from dark corners. Even stunning them with bright light isn't always safe - trying to stun them for too long will enrage them and allow them to attack anyway.
  • Undead Huntsmen in the Huntman's Copse are slow, but powerful and can easily kill an unprepared player. They also do bleed damage and their attacks go around your shield.
  • The Undead Citizens. Aside from being fast and hitting ridiculously hard, they're nearly impossible to kill before they blow up in your face, and the detonation takes away a ludicrous amount of health, with enough power to hurl the player off ledges with ease. Oh, and the ones encountered at the Dragon Aerie don't do much physical damage... they just break all your equipment.
  • The Drakekeepers at the Dragon Shrine. Most enemies make two or three swings during their attacks. Drakekeepers, especially the ones with the big two-handed maces, start swinging and don't stop.
  • Anyone who sees a Cyclops (being new to the series or not) will instinctively believe that these brutes are very tough but slow, with attacks that should be very easy to avoid. Said players will then have the pleasure of seeing this massive monsters outrunning them, with attacks that are not only fast, but have longer reach than they appear. Also, they just love to grab players and chew their heads off.
  • The Mist-Shrouded Soldiers in Shaded Woods. You arrive at a patch of the woods covered in fog. Inside that fog are Hollow soldiers who can both fight melee range or shoot at you with crossbows. But hey, sounds like the typical mook, nothing much to worry about except the fog makes them a little less visible, right? WRONG. The bastards are transparent, Predator-style. They can only barely be seen by their silhouette if you squint hard enough, and practically invisible when standing still. By the time you see one, there's probably another one right behind you ready to stab you in the back and One-Hit Kill you. Oh, and to make matters even worse, they're practically indistinguishable from the shades of other players, so you'll run over to fight one you just saw only to find it's another player, leaving you open for yet another backstab. Interface Screw much?
  • For low-level players, we have the Hollow Spearman. Remember the old hollow spearman from Dark Souls? The ones that never lowered their shields and loved to poke you from a distance? Well, now they are back with an even longer range. Never fight two at the same time, because they will use freaking phalanx formation on you (when one of them is protecting himself with his shield, the other one will attack you from behind the first one)
  • The demonic spiders in Tseldora. While a bit of a pushover in first playthrough, in New Game+ they will swarm you relentlessly while you are attempting to defeat the Duke's Dear Freja and while you face one, or even two red phantoms. The spiders are weak to your attacks by this stage, but their movements are unpredictable and they hit for massive damage.
  • The Giant Pyromancers in the Giant Memories, but none more so than the two in Memory of Vamar. They camp on a rooftop near 4 or 5 other Giants, and just spam Great Fireball with perfect accuracy.
  • The Flame Salamanders in the Forest of Fallen Giants. While fighting them is completely optional, they are ridiculously difficult to kill. All but immune to fire, completely unblockable physical attacks, near perfectly accurate, infinite range fire balls, high health pools and surprisingly fast.
  • The dual-wielding Sanctum Knights in Crown of the Sunken King's Dragon Sanctum. Insane combo potential, coupled with the fact you'll have trouble finding a way to properly damage them (all physical attacks pass through them, for starters) in your first trip to the DLC. You need find and destroy their corpses to make them visible.
    • The Drakeblood Knights in the same DLC. Infinite poise, infinite stamina, massive damage for a small enemy, able to cancel any action into a roll (including another roll), and they are smart enough to backstab and guard-break you.
    • The Poison Statue Clusters in Crown of the Sunken King are basically the stationary poison-spitting statues from the Gutter and Black Gulch... except they can move around. And are nearly invincible to damage. And they fire darts that petrify you. Good luck with that.
  • Crown of the Old Iron King has gifted us with a new addition: The Iron Warriors. Giant metal-clad monsters who wield the biggest weapon in the game effortlessly (that you can actually use), have shoulder pads that periodically "bleed" lava which can stun you and there's another version that causes bleeding (you can't get that weapon).
    • The Possessed Armor enemies from the same DLC will be your doom. Their melee attacks deal heavy damage to health and stamina, and can be difficult to interrupt due to their high poise and long range. Their ranged attacks are far more threatening, however, as they are deadly accurate with their powerful greatbows, tracking the player's movement perfectly before firing.
  • Crown of the Ivory King has several nasties:
    • The Imitation Golems. While they are slow and can be avoided if they're not awakened by nearby mob deaths, they boast immense elemental resistances as well as colossal health, and can trample you for a huge amount of damage. What's worse, they're placed in areas infested with hordes of enemies that just beg to have their souls sucked into the golems for a swift awakening.
    • None are more aggravating than the Frozen Reindeers fought in the Frigid Outskirts. Large, fast and capable of charging you like a steam train, they also discharge electric attacks that stagger you regardless of poise. Due to the near-perpetual snowstorm of the area, it can be quite difficult to direct your attacks on the enemy, and if you're unlucky enough, you can get swarmed by several of them.