Baldur’s Gate 3: How To Defeat Commander Zhalk

Commander Zhalk is technically the very first boss that you can encounter in Baldur’s Gate 3. Players do not need to defeat Zhalk to successfully escape the Nautiloid, and his health pool and defenses are quite frightening. However, a good strategy and presence of mind can help you trounce him. Plus, on being defeated, he will drop one of the most potent weapons in the game, the Everburn Blade. So take on the tricky battle against Commander Zhalk in Baldur’s Gate 3 with the help of this guide!

How To Defeat Commander Zhalk In Baldur’s Gate 3

While progressing through the “Escape The Nautiloid” quest, you will meet Commander Zhalk battling a Mind Flayer in the Nautiloid chamber. You can choose to fight Zhalk or to bypass him and reach the control panel. However, it is recommended that you battle Zhalk for the loot and experience you will receive.


If you want to defeat Commander Zhalk in Baldur’s Gate 3, you must make the best use of the Mind Flayer. During the fight, Zhalk will mainly focus on the Mind Flayer, which allows you to land attacks on him  while he is busy. So make sure to keep the Mind Flayer alive for as long as you can! Before you get into the fight, you should have both possible companions with you: Lae’zel and Shadowheart. Since Zhalk is an enemy with a massive Health pool, defeating him alone will be nearly impossible.

How To Free Shadowheart In Baldur’s Gate 3


While Lae’zel will join you automatically, Shadowheart must be freed from her imprisonment. Freeing Shadowheart is one of the major steps to defeating Commander Zhalk. As you head towards the heart of the Nautiloid, you will find her trapped inside a Mind Flayer pod and struggling to get out. In order to free her, you must find the Eldritch Rune, which can open the pod. However, it is locked inside a chest, which requires the Elaborate Key to open.


You can find this key at the far end of the chamber. Simply walk through the strange-looking gate and look for the Corpse lying on the ground. Loot it  to get the key, then walk back to the chest. Lastly, interact with the chest to get the Rune you need.


With the Eldritch Rune in your hand, head back to the pod inside which Shadowheart is stuck and place your hand on the console.. Here, you must pass a DC10 Wisdom Check, and your work will be done! You should save your game here so that you can reload if you fail the roll.

Fighting Commander Zhalk in Baldur’s Gate 3

A mind flayer preparing to insert a tadpole into his victim's eye.

Once you have Shadowheart and Lae’zel on your side, you can fight Commander Zhalk. He will be busy fighting the Mind Flayer, so you will have several opportunities to land your attacks. You can also use Shadowheart’s abilities to boost the defensive stats of the Mind Flayer. Make sure to keep your party’s health high as well using potions or Shadowheart’s skills. (Don’t heal the Mind Flayer unless his health gets dangerously low, as you will have to fight him in a moment.)

After Commander Zhalk falls, you will have to finish off the Mind Flayer as well. Since Commander Zhalk is defeated, the Mind Flayer will now consider you his new enemy and try to take you down by using every possible means. Once both are defeated, loot Commander Zhalk’s corpse to claim the Everburn Blade.

With this strategy, you can defeat Commander Zhalk in Baldur’s Gate 3. If you find this guide helpful, make sure to share it with your friends! Let us know if you have any questions regarding Baldur’s Gate 3  or if you want any specific topics to be covered in future GameLuster guides!

Baldur’s Gate 3 is currently available on Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 5, with an Xbox release planned for the future.


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