Archespore is a plant-like monster that appears in CD Projekt's The Witcher franchise. While it's restricted to the ground, this doesn't make it any less dangerous so caution is heavily advised when going up against one. However, just like any plant, it has a weakness to fire.
Fortunately, fire proved an equally efficient remedy for these cursed plants, and using the Igni sign does not require carrying an inconvenient tank on one's back.
- Some crimes are so terrible that they fill people with terror and offend the gods. The criminal's ill will and the cruelty of his deed conceive a curse that brings the archespore to life. The beast attacks innocent creatures hatefully, trying to take vengeance until justice is done.
- In Chapter III, Geralt can talk with a "Townswoman" sitting at The New Narakort. She is blonde and wearing a green dress with a yellow shirt. She will tell him she is in the mood to spin a tale but she is thirsty. Depending on her mood, she will ask for "a mug of beer" or milk, in exchange telling Geralt about Basilisks, Wyverns and eventually Archespores.
- Geralt must exit and then re-enter the inn (or meditate) after each tale to speak to her again. After Geralt has acquired all the entries she knows about, she will still ask for milk and beer but will not give any new tales or journal entries.
- Curses and the Cursed
- Archespore remains will not contain Archespore juice unless you have their bestiary entry.
- Early in the game, torches are a quicker and safer anti-Archespore weapon than Geralt's swords. Each hit will stun it and occasionally incinerate it.
Blood and Wine expansion
- Looks like a flower to me. A hideous, disgusting flower.
– Blasco Tennerbe, last words
- Archespores look like gigantic, aesthetically unpleasing flowers with some of the traits of exceptionally cruel and bloodthirsty sundews. They are, however, far more dangerous that even the most colossal sundew. Their peculiar appearance makes them practically impossible to discern amidsts other plants. By the time one draws close enough to realize what they are, it is often too late to flee.
- According to popular belief, archespores are cursed plants grown in soil fertilized by the blood of the dying. They are most often found in places which in the past saw pogroms, bloody rituals or cruel murders Four types of archespore have been catalogued to date, differing from one another in terms of coloring: brown (the least dangerous), green and purple (the most dangerous). The final variant, said to have been cultivated by mages from Ban Ard, is the yellow archespore, whose strength is similar to that of its green-colored-cousins.
- Regardless of color, all archespores fight using similar methods: attacking with powerful, jaw-like leaves. If their victim is out of reach, they can also spray caustic acid which if it makes any contact whatsoever with the skin, can provoke a reaction similar to that caused by severe poisoning.
- Like other plants, all archespores are extremely vulnerable to fire, which is one of the most effective methods of fighting them. Silver also works well, as does any sort of shock wave. Archespores do not like strong vibrations, which cause them to flee underground at once. Due to the nature of their origins, oil damaging to cursed beings can also be useful against them.
Archespores have several deadly techniques. From a distance, they shoot venom that not only causes substantial damage, but also deals additional poison damage after striking. Their pods can explode, releasing an explosive poison that deals extremely high damage (but no lingering poison damage). The creature will also lunge forward if you get too close. They also have the ability to quickly sink into the ground and sprout from any nearby pods currently on the ground. They will do this if you manage to land several attacks in a row (3 Fast Attacks for example) and will leave a pod where they sank into the ground. If you don't immediately roll away, it will explode in your face like the other pods do. Fighting more than one can be very tricky, as the archespores you aren't currently attacking will use its ranged attacks to interrupt you as you try to kill its buddy.
Should it stick its head underground, it will summon explosive pods, but also become vulnerable. Run directly at it while the pods appear, and once you've closed the distance, hit it three times with strong attacks. An archespore will retreat into the ground after three hits, so you'll want to make them count. If time allows, position yourself behind it to increase the likelihood of landing critical hits to maximize your damage. Should it stay above ground and shoot poison globs at you, use the roll to dodge the globs. Rolling will allow you to move forward and close the distance, but a forward dash dodge will just be struck anyway. Once you roll into close range, the archespore will immediately strike with a lightning fast melee attack that will interrupt any of your attacks or Signs. So directly after your roll, dash dodge to the side. Then, counter with one fast attack (to stun it before it attacks again), one strong attack, and one use of slightly charged Rend for maximum damage. If you don't have Rend, just use a strong attack instead. When it retreats, back away from the soon-to-explode pod and repeat the process.
Multiple archespores are a bit trickier. While you're trying to deal with one, the other can pelt you with poison and interrupt your attacks, giving the spore you're currently after the chance to whack you with its melee and build up damage quickly, so you'll need to immobilize one. The Dancing Star bomb will do very little damage, but the burning will keep an archespore occupied long enough for you to approach and strike its buddy using the tactics detailed above. Bomb one, attack the other. Keep the fires burning until there's only one left, and then eliminate the survivor.
If you manage to destroy the pods, the archespore will be unable to escape while you mash attack, but so many pods tend to spawn that this usually isn't an option. As for your Signs, they're surprisingly ineffective in this fight. Igni will set a plant alight, but also causes them to relocate in order to smother the flames, which puts you back where you started with very little damage dealt. Curiously, Dancing Star fires will not cause it to relocate. Aard will knock a plant back and give you the chance to attack, but you won't be able to get it off before dodging its melee strike, and once you've dodged the melee strike, it's open to sword strikes anyway, rendering the Sign pointless. This isn't the case if you have long range on it though, as that will let you stagger a spore from outside its melee range, so if you have that perk, feel free to make use of it.
Use Golden Oriole if possible. It will protect you from the majority of the damage dealt by the poison spit, and if you have the superior version, you'll be able to slurp up the poison for free, massive heals, instantly turning the fight into an absolute joke.