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The most loyal and devout servants of the King.

Simple, weak creatures find strength by forming a hive and obeying a ruler. Such creatures become the arms and teeth and claws of their monarch.

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Royal Retainers are enemies in Hollow Knight. These bugs were the most loyal servants of the Pale King, but a number of them died after the King disappeared.[1][2] They can still be found in the White Palace in the Dream Realm where they wait for the King.[3]

Behaviour and Tactics

Stand in small groups and bow when the Knight approaches. They deal no damage on contact.

They can be used as a convenient source of SOUL by using the Dream Nail on them.

Dream Nail Dialogue Essence.png

In the White Palace:

  • ...My King... All for us...
  • ... We will wait... King...
  • ...King... Your troubles... Let us...

Corpse in the Abyss (Lighthouse):

  • ...Turn it off?...Cannot...
My King. I'm sorry...the sea calls...

Corpses in Ancient Basin:
(Pale Fountain):

  • ...Return to us...
  • ...Missing monarch, we need you now...

(White Palace Ruins):

  • ...Where have you gone?...Dear King...

(In Mawlurk corpse):

  • ...Mine...

(Room left of destroyed lift):

  • ...the madness spreads...


Living Royal Retainers are only found within the White Palace, although some corpses can be found elsewhere in the Ancient Basin.



  • Their Hunter's Journal entry is automatically unlocked after picking up the White Fragment.
  • When hit they simply dissipate into white Essence instead of leaving a corpse.
  • Royal Retainers are one of the few enemies that has various different looks, but no change in behaviour.
  • Royal Retainers are one of the few enemies that respawns upon leaving and re-entering the room.
  • Various other dead Royal Retainers can be found around the Ancient Basin and other areas bearing some varying headdresses and clothes, the unique ones are as follows:


  1. Royal Retainer Hunter's Journal entry: "The most loyal and devout servants of the King."
  2. Royal Retainer corpse Dream Nail dialogue: "...Where have you gone?...Dear King..." "...Missing monarch, we need you now..."
  3. Royal Retainer Dream Nail dialogue: "... We will wait... King..."
Compendium Broken Vessel Idle.png
Main Game CrawlidVengeflyVengefly KingGruzzerGruz MotherTiktikAspid HunterAspid MotherAspid HatchlingGoamWandering HuskHusk HornheadLeaping HuskHusk BullyHusk WarriorHusk GuardEntombed HuskFalse Knight (Failed Champion) • MaggotMenderbugLifeseedBaldurElder Baldur

MosscreepMossflyMosskinVolatile MosskinFool EaterSquitObbleGulkaMaskflyMoss ChargerMassive Moss ChargerMoss KnightMossy VagabondDurandooDurandaAluba

Charged LumaflyUomaOomaUumuu

AmbloomFunglingFungoonSporgFungified HuskShrumelingShrumal WarriorShrumal OgreMantis YouthMantis WarriorMantis Lords

Husk SentryHeavy SentryWinged SentryLance SentryMistakeFollySoul TwisterSoul WarriorSoul Master (Tyrant) • Husk DandyCowardly HuskGluttonous HuskGorgeous HuskGreat Husk SentryWatcher KnightCollector

BelflyPilflipHwurmpBluggsacDung DefenderFlukefeyFlukemonFlukemarm

ShardmiteGlimbackCrystal HunterCrystal CrawlerHusk MinerCrystallised HuskCrystal Guardian (Enraged)

Furious VengeflyVolatile GruzzerViolent HuskSlobbering Husk

DirtcarverCarver HatcherGarpedeCorpse CreeperDeeplingDeephunterLittle WeaverStalking DevoutNosk

Shadow CreeperLesser MawlekMawlurkBrooding MawlekLightseedInfected BalloonBroken Vessel (Lost Kin)

BooflyPrimal AspidHopperGreat HopperGrub MimicHivelingHive SoldierHive GuardianHusk Hive

Spiny HuskLoodleMantis PetraMantis TraitorTraitor Lord

Sharp BaldurArmoured SquitBattle ObbleOblobblesShielded FoolSturdy FoolWinged FoolHeavy FoolDeath LoodleVolt TwisterZoteGod Tamer

XeroGorbElder HuMarmuNo EyesGalienMarkoth

WingmouldRoyal RetainerKingsmouldSiblingVoid Tendrils

Hornet (ProtectorSentinel) • Hollow KnightRadianceShadeHunter's Mark

Hidden Dreams Icon.png Hidden Dreams Grey Prince ZoteWinged ZotelingHopping ZotelingVolatile ZotelingWhite Defender

Grimm Troupe Icon.png The Grimm Troupe Grimmkin NoviceGrimmkin MasterGrimmkin NightmareGrimmNightmare KingSeal of Binding

Lifeblood Icon.png Lifeblood Hive Knight

Godmaster Icon.png Godmaster FlukemungaPale LurkerSisters of BattleWinged NoskNailmasters Oro & MatoPaintmaster SheoGreat Nailsage SlyPure VesselAbsolute RadianceVoid IdolWeathered Mask