Conan Exiles Shaleback King Guide

Conan Exiles Shaleback King Guide: Lord of Kappas

Conan Exiles Shaleback King guide will help you defeat this early-game monstrosity. The Shaleback King is the first boss I came across on the Exiled Lands, though, at the time, I had no idea he was a boss.

At that point, I didn’t know what a Conan Exiles boss was as my knowledge was limited. In my head, there were no “world bosses” or roaming bosses; instead, they were all confined to arenas or dungeons. But I soon learned the truth.

It happened when I noticed a Shaleback that was quite large compared to others I had seen. I approached him only to realize unlike his smaller family members; he was aggressive.

Thus my first boss fight begins and ends all within a three-second time span. I suggest you avoid my method of approach and instead prepare yourself against this underrated early-game boss.

You might also be interested in: Conan Exiles Bosses Guide

Shaleback King Overview

  • The Shaleback King is one of the first bosses you may face
  • The Shaleback King is known for its relatively high health.
  • Focus on dodging when fighting this boss.
  • Theri attacks are slams, slaps, and ground smashes.
  • The Shaleback boss is located near Lookout Point, Oasis of Nekhet, and other random locations.
  • Defeating the Shaleback King will reward you with Shaleback King Head, Bones, Thick Hide, Chitin, and Exotic Flesh.

Shaleback King Location

Conan Exiles Shaleback King Guide
Screenshot by Emily Medlock

The Shaleback King is a boss you will likely see early on in your journey. He frequents the Savanna and River along with other Shalebacks. However, there are two primary locations that he calls his home.

Remember that the Shaleback King can roam, so he doesn’t have an exact nest where he can always be found. If you’re looking for a boss head, consider searching for the Elk King instead.

  •  Lookout Point – a thrall camp peninsula that sticks out into the water and is easy to spot on your map. The Shaleback King loves this area. To reach it, travel to north-central J-5. If you want to avoid the thrall camp, consider stopping at the base of the peninsula.
  • Oasis of Nekhet – the Shaleback King’s favorite spot. You can find him around the oasis with many other Shalebacks surrounding him. To reach this area, travel to B-8 and then carefully search the oasis, avoiding jaguars who can spot you from afar.

Defeating the Shaleback King

defeating the shaleback king
Screenshot by Emily Medlock
  • HP – 8914
  • Armor – 65
  • Base XP – 32,400

The Shaleback King isn’t difficult to defeat later on, but when you’re level 10, scrambling for stone and wood, you will probably struggle. He doesn’t do a lot of damage compared to other bosses, but his HP is relatively high.

He does more than twice as much damage as a regular Shaleback, but thankfully, his attacks are easy to dodge. The problem is doing enough damage to him while preserving enough stamina to dodge.

  • Slap – a fast-paced slap that doesn’t do a lot of damage and can be blocked or dodged.
  • Slam – a heavy attack that you can dodge easily because it’s so slow
  • Jump Smash – this gorilla-like attack is short-range, but it is difficult to block, so rolling away is better

As far as experience, to put things into perspective, if you defeat him at level one somehow, it will automatically take you to level 9 or 10. If you defeat him at level 10 (more likely), it will only take you to around level 12. So after around level 10, defeating the Shaleback King for experience is fairly pointless.

Shaleback King Loot

The Shaleback King isn’t a Legendary Creature, so he doesn’t have a Skeleton Key. He also doesn’t guard any chests. Instead, the only loot he provides is harvested. All of these items can be harvested with tools from the carcass of a Shaleback King.

  • Bone – used for certain weapons, armor, deity items, and bonemeal. Use a pickaxe to harvest.
  • Chitin – used for Stygian armor, taxidermy items, and bonemeal. Use a hatchet or pick to harvest.
  • Exotic Flesh – high-tier meat that pets love and makes a great ingredient for player food recipes.
  • Shaleback King Head – used to make a Shaleback Trophy. Use a cleaver to harvest.
  • Thick Hide – primarily used for thick leather. Use a hatchet to harvest.

Other Wild Shalebacks

Screenshot by Emily Medlock

When you fight the Shaleback King, there’s a good chance you will find other Shalebacks nearby. So it’s also a good idea to know what you’re up against with them so you can choose whether to fight them first or leave them alone.

I almost always fight them while I fight the Shaleback King because they’re all so weak that it’s less trouble to kill them than get attacked by them.


  • HP – 167
  • Armor – 22
  • Base XP – 3600

Regular Shalebacks can be green, red, or purple. They all have the simple, fast slap attack that shouldn’t pose much of a threat. But their heavy attacks are different depending on the color.

Green or blueish ones will have the classic slam attack though they won’t attack you unless you attack another Shaleback or threaten them. The red ones will attack if you get too close to them and will pounce on you.

Undead Kappa

  • HP – 774
  • Armor – 84
  • Base XP – 17280

The Undead Kappa is significantly stronger than the basic Shalebacks. They normally only appear in the purge, but they do have two spawns in the wild. The first is Shaleback Hollow which is a cave southeast of the Unnamed City.

The second is the Wine Cellar dungeon, where it can appear randomly. It is not a boss and is instead considered a regular undead predator creature in Conan Exiles. If you see one, I suggest fighting it because it drops rare loot.

  • Brimstone – used in explosives, dyes, and steelfire (you’ll need a lot of this later on.)
  • Demon Blood – used for corrupted stones, potions, to feed certain pets, and more.
  • Demonic Shaleback Head – used for a trophy and at one point for the now-discontinued Undead Kappa pet.
  • Putrid meat – what most meat spoils into, useful for feeding some pets or compost.

Shaleback Hatchling

  • HP – 8
  • Armor – 10
  • Base XP – 180

The Shaleback Hatching does not fight. It can be picked up and raised as your own. However, if you attack any nearby Shaleback, it will run and isn’t always easy to catch. That’s why you should remain passive until after you capture the hatching if you’re searching for a pet.

If you don’t want a Shaleback, you can kill it with one hit and harvest it for the following.

  • Bone – used for certain weapons, armor, deity items, and bonemeal. Use a pickaxe to harvest.
  • Hide – used for armor and leather. Use a hatchet to harvest.
  • Feral Flesh – common meat for certain pets or food recipes.
  • Shaleback Hatchling Head – a rare item that you need for the hatchling trophy or to make a Shell Shield. Use a pickaxe to harvest.

Shaleback Pets

shaleback pets conan
Screenshot by Emily Medlock

There are five types of Shaleback pets you can get, not including the DLC Shaleback. To raise a hatchling, put it in an animal pen and then feed it certain foods, depending on which Shaleback you hope to get, though there are no guarantees on what it will turn into.

Shaleback (Green)

shaleback conan
Screenshot by Emily Medlock
  • Health – 296
  • Armor – 49
  • Agility – 1
  • Vitality – 1
  • Vitality Bonus – 89
  • Armor Bonus – 34

Also known as Variant A, this Shaleback is green and is considered the “worst” of all the Shaleback pets. But if you want to add a green one to your collection, you’re in luck because it’s the easiest to get.

In fact, I know people who prefer green because it’s the most turtle-like (understandable,) and a Shaleback is the closest thing you’ll get to a turtle in the Exiled Lands without any DLC or mods.

Best foods to get a Green Shaleback:

  • Plant Fiber – 90%
  • Vines – 85%
  • Highland Berries – 80%
  •  Shadespiced Plant Fiber – 77%
  • Unappetizing Shellfish – 75%

Shaleback (Blue)

Screenshot by Emily Medlock
  • Health – 389
  • Armor – 53
  • Agility – 1
  • Vitality – 1
  • Vitality Bonus – 117
  • Armor Bonus – 34

The blue Shaleback still isn’t great, but it is much better than the green version. The blue version is called Variant B Shaleback, and compared to its other stats, it has exceptional armor, giving it relevancy.

I love the vibrancy of the blue because some of the other Shaleback colors don’t stand out, even though they are supposedly a different color. The blue is the brightest and looks the “shiniest,” in my opinion.

Best for to get a blue Shaleback:

  • Shadespiced Vines – 14%
  • Shadespiced Highland Berries – 14%
  • Vines – 10%
  • Highland Berries – 10%

Shaleback (Purple)

Screenshot by Emily Medlock
  • Health – 451
  • Armor – 56
  • Agility – 1
  • Vitality – 1
  • Vitality Bonus – 136
  • Armor Bonus – 34

The purple Shaleback isn’t quite as good as the red version. This may be because the Shaleback King is also red, yet the purple is the rarest, making it special for its color, not its stats.

Don’t get me wrong; I love purple, and I think the color of this one is the prettiest. But the word purple is used loosely in this case as the in-game model doesn’t look that different than the red or blue one, so the color was kind of a fail.

Best foods to get a Purple Shaleback:

  •  Shadespiced Desert Berries – 14%
  •  Shadespiced Rotten Shellfish – 14%
  •  Shadespiced Shellfish – 14%
  • Shadespiced Succulent Shellfish – 14%

Shaleback (Red)

Screenshot by Emily Medlock
  • Health – 512
  • Armor – 58
  • Agility – 1
  • Vitality – 1
  • Vitality Bonus – 154
  • Armor Bonus – 34

Also known as Variant D Shalebacks, these red Shalebacks are finally starting to get good. They have great HP and armor for their tier, making them valuable in battle and one of my top picks for base defense.

If you don’t care about looks and are raising a Shaleback, I suggest trying to get this one or a Greater Shaleback. All of the other non-Greater Shalebacks are pointless compared to this one unless you want a rainbow of Shalebacks at your base.

Best foods to get a Red Shaleback:

  • Shadespiced Succulent Shellfish – 24%
  • Exotic Shellfish – 20%
  • Shadespiced Shellfish – 19%
  •  Savory Shellfish – 15%

Greater Shaleback

Screenshot by Emily Medlock
  • Health – 1297
  • Damage – 18
  • Armor – 179
  • Strength – 2
  • Vitality – 8
  • Grit – 3
  • Strength Bonus – 5%
  • Agility Bonus – 5%
  • Vitality Bonus – 82
  • Armor Bonus – 40

The Greater Shaleback is a valid pet that may be the first follower you get. Pets are easier to tame and raise than thralls, so they are common early game. It’s hard not to run onto a baby Shaleback.

When max level, if you feed them the right foods, you’ll have your very own Shaleback King to follow you around. Of course, the likelihood of getting one on the first try is super low, like 14% to be exact, and that’s with the perfect food.

Best foods to get a Greater Shaleback:

  •  Shadespiced Desert Berries – 14%
  •  Shadespiced Shellfish – 14%
  •  Shadespiced Succulent Shellfish – 14%
  •  Desert Berries – 10%
  •  Exotic Shellfish – 10%
  •  Savory Shellfish – 10%


Question: Where is the Elk King in Conan Exiles?

Answer: The Elk King is another early-game boss in Conan Exiles. He lives in the Highlands, Snow, and Tundra. The most accessible place to find one is near Freya’s Hovel, where he may roam into the forest.

Question: Are All Shaleback Colors the Same?

Answer: No. This can be confusing because some of them will attack you, and others won’t. In general, warmer-colored Shalebacks are aggressive, while cooler colors are not. However, the red Shaleback aggro range is still quite low.

Question: Is the Shaleback King on Isle of Siptah?

Answer: Yes. They typically live along the beaches to the south, but they can roam in the same type of biomes that you may find them in on the Exiled Lands; they just aren’t quite as common.

Become the New Shaleback King

Screenshot by Emily Medlock

Though he may be tanky, the Shaleback King is an easy fight. As soon as you learn to dodge, you’re ready to take on a Shaleback King. Just stay in range of him and dodge his attacks. It doesn’t matter how many hits it takes to take him down because, eventually, he will fall.

The harder it is to kill him, the more of an impact the XP you get from him will have. If you take pets or thralls with you, they, too, will benefit. Of course, if you’re only there for the boss head, like many other players, that’s completely fine too.

Trust me, if you can easily take on one of these before you master the game’s mechanics, the next few bosses will be easy for you too. I see the Shaleback King as a boss used to test your endurance. Now that’s a challenge I’m always willing to accept.

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