I love saying how all Hollow Knight NPCs have a special place in my heart. Team Cherry did an incredible job giving every NPC unique characteristics that differentiate them from one another. They are all memorable so let’s see what we know about them in this Hollow Knight Characters guide.
Elderbug is the first NPC you will see in Hollow Knight when you arrive at Dirtmouth. He is the oldest and the last citizen of Dirtmouth left. He warns you about the dangers that await you in the Forgotten Crossroads and he’ll explain how the bugs of Hallownest lost their memories long ago. As other bugs return to Hallownest, he starts talking about them so you can speak to him every time someone new comes back to Dirtmouth.
He will even accept the Delicate Flower and even starts thinking that dreams aren’t such a bad thing after all. The only thing he minds throughout the game is the Grimm Troupe and their arrival. He says that it fills him with dread and will ignore them. If you banish the Grimm Troupe, he will be relieved, and he even invites Nymm into Dirtmouth, bringing some joyful music into a windy town.
No price is too high for Cornifer’s maps. He is one of the essential NPCs in Hollow Knight and one that you will actively be on the lookout to find every time you enter a new area. He will always be happy to sell you a map and share his opinions on the environment that you are in right now.
In Greenpath, he is delighted that there is so much life right beside a wasteland, and later in Deepnest, you can find him afraid as we all should be in Deepnest.
Iselda & Sly
Iselda and Sly will be the first shopkeepers you will see in Hollow Knight, and they will both move to Dirtmouth after events are triggered. For Sly, that event is finding him in his little house in the Forgotten Crossroads. For Iselda, Cornifer’s wife, the events are meeting Cornifer, obtaining Vengeful Spirit, or seeing the False Knight.
Both Sly and Iselda have useful goods for you, and you will even get a charm from Sly after learning all three Nailarts.
- After learning the Nailarts and visiting Sly in his shop, you will find him in the basement. He will there explain that he used to be a Great Nail Sage, and he will give you the Nailmaster’s Glory charm as a reward for learning all three Nailarts.
Jiji locked herself behind a stone door in Dirtmouth that you can open using a Simple key. You can buy one from Sly as well as a Rancid Egg for her. When you enter, you will find her sleeping, but she will quickly introduce herself and offer to help you when you need it.
She sees what the world has come to, and she is afraid of what will come if she falls asleep again. When the Grimm Troupe arrives, she says that their sent is unfamiliar to her but that helping them might benefit you.
Steel Soul Jinn
In the Steel Soul mode, Jiji’s services can’t be used as when you die, the game ends. Jinn replaces Jiji, and instead of eating Rancid Eggs, she offers to buy them from you to give to a friend that likes them.
The Grubfather is an elderly patriarch who was very unlucky when the Collector trapped all of his Grubs in jars and scattered them everywhere. Grubs are harmless but find their way into every small passage and find Geo and other valuable items.
When you free them, they go back to their home, the Grubhome, and the Grubfather rewards you for rescuing the Grubs.
There are a lot of them, but after you save them all, you will be left with a lot of useful things, and the Grubfather will be happy as well. It does look like he ate all his children, though.
- By defeating the Collector, you get a map showing where he hid all of the Grubs.
The Last Stag
The Stag that will take you on rides through the tunnels of Hallownest is the last of its kind. He still hopes that there are Stags or baby Stags somewhere else.
After you’ve found every Stag station and reminded the Last Stag of all of these places, he will offer to take you to his home.
He will say that visiting again made him feel the age getting to him, but Dream Nailing him earlier will reveal that he already realized he is getting tired more easily now.
- When you first encounter the Last Stag, he will be happy and surprised that anyone still uses the old tunnels and will be glad to take you anywhere; he really dislikes the Tram, though.
The Snail Shaman
The Snail Shaman is a member of the Snail Shaman tribe, and he isn’t the only one you’ll notice. He knows he isn’t the only one and that his relatives are somewhere in Hallownest but doesn’t know much about them as he is closed to the room where you get Vengeful Spirit.
- The Shamans can make and give you spells like Vengeful Spirit, but not the Shade versions (upgraded versions) of the spells as they’ve never been in the Abyss.
Myla is a happy bug singing away in the mines, digging to find something valuable in the crystals. We can see how the infection overtakes a mind when visiting her. At a certain point, she becomes fully infected but doesn’t leave her little cave.
You won’t get a Journal entry for her because she is indistinguishable from the other husks when she is fully infected. The only way that you can tell that it’s Myla is by the lantern she still has on.
- WE DO NOT KILL MYLA.
Speaking of the Hunter’s Journal, you can visit the Hunter in Greenpath, and he will give you a Journal to fill out throughout your journey. After you finish it, you go back to him and… well, you’ll see for yourself. You’ll be surprised. He lives for the hunt.
Sadly the Menderbug is considered an enemy in Hollow Knight, and killing him will give you a Journal entry. You can rarely find him fixing his favorite sign at the bottom of the well in the Forgotten Crossroads.
The sad part comes after you kill him. You can then enter his house and read his diary in which he says how someone keeps breaking his favorite sign – that’s you. He is good at spare parts, and he is happy to fix it.
He doubted that there was a bug in Hallowest happier than him; now remember how you killed him.
Hornet is the daughter of Herrah the Beast and the Pale King. She was raised in the Deepnest and became the protector of Hallownest.
She sensed the awakening of the infection like Quirrel and you, and she is there to contribute to the happy ending.
Related: Comprehensive Hornet Guide
Quirrel is Monomon the Teacher’s apprentice who wandered out of Hallownest with no memory, only his blade and Monomon’s mask. He returns to the kingdom to meet Hornet and you.
His memory comes back while being on a quest he didn’t know he was on. In the end, he remembers everything and helps unseal Monomon’s seal on the Temple of the Black Egg.
Check out our complete Quirrel Guide.
Monomon the Teacher, Lurien the Watcher, and Herrah the Beast were the three Dreamers chosen to be placed as seals on the Temple of the Black Egg to stop the infection from spreading.
Herrah the Beast declined, so she made a deal with the Pale King to give her a child – Hornet. She was given some time with Hornet before being put to eternal sleep in the Beast’s Den.
Lurien the Watcher was voluntarily put to sleep in his tower behind six Watcher Knights, and he didn’t want the seals ever to break.
Entirely on the other side of the spectrum, Monomon the Teacher wanted the seals to break, and she telepathically called Quirrel to undo the extra protection she put on her seal.
In all of this Herrah didn’t care about the kingdom as the Spider Tribe never even accepted the Pale King as their ruler and didn’t have any opinion on whether she wanted to seals to be undone or not.
Bretta is a bug who wandered off similarly to Sly but much deeper below. You can find her scared in the Fungal Wastes where she will be surprised that someone came all the way down to find her and after that make her way back home.
- You can find a Mask Shard in her house along with her diary in Dirtmouth, and she will blush when you sit next to her on the bench.
Millibelle is a banker in Hollow Knight that will actually be helpful for some time to keep your Geo safe before she runs away.
Later, you can find her resting in a Hot Spring and punch the Geo out of her in the City of Tears.
Midwife is a terrifying creature that I can’t unsee and often visits me in my nightmares. She is just a bug with information about Herrah the Beast and the Spider Tribe that loses control, opens her face up, and tries to eat you.
She also does a mask of damage to you here. I was diagnosed with PTSD after this.
The Moss Prophet
Moss Prophet is a prophet in Queen’s Gardens that had already succumbed to the infection and preaches the word of Radiance. You can see him in two forms.
One where he can still talk, and then when he is fully infected and silent with his dead listeners in front of him.
Leg Eater & Divine
Leg Eater is in Fungal Wastes, and he is the guy that sells you breakable charms and fixes them. The charms bought can be taken to Divine in Dirtmouth, where she will eat them and push them out, making them unbreakable.
If you go back to Leg eater with unbreakable charms and then back to Divine, you will see that Divine ate him as well, leaving only his legs behind.
If you visit Leg Eater with the Defender’s Crest equipped, he will lower the prices for charms and repairing.
Relic Seeker Lemm
Lemm is a relics collector in the City of Tears, and he will pay a significant amount of Geo for the relics you bring him.
The most valuable relic is the Arcane egg, there are only four in the game, and you can sell them for 1200 Geo.
Seer is the last surviving moth that gives you the Dream Nail and encourages you to collect Essence.
After you have collected 2400 Essence, she will explain that the Radiance is causing the infection because the bugs of Hallownest and the Moth Tribe collectively forgot about her light before she turns into Essence and disappears.
Revek is the protector of the Spirit’s Glade right across Seer’s cave. Seer will open the Spirit’s Glade, and Revek will warn you not to harm his inhabitants. You can, however, harm them, and Revek will hunt you down, dealing two masks of damage, but you can Dream Nail all of the Spirits and come back and Dream Nail Revek as well.
You will get one Essence per Spirit, including Revek.
Cloth is a warrior with a mission to prove her courage. You will see her several times throughout the game. She is adorable.
Oro, Mato, and Sheo are the Nailmasters, and they will teach you their Nailarts. Oro will teach you the Dash Slash, Mato will teach you the Cyclone Slash, and Sheo will teach you the Great Slash.
- Nailarts deal more damage than regular Nail hits and scale with the Nail’s damage.
- After learning all three, you can get the Nailmaster’s Glory charm from Sly.
Nailsmith is on the outskirts of the capital of Hallownest, the City of Tears. He will upgrade your Nail using the rare metal Pale Ore, and after he has created a Pure Nail finally, he will ask you to cut him down. He has done his purpose and wants to feel the strength of the Nail as his last wish. Don’t do this, though.
- He will go to Sheo’s hut and make wooden figurines after you learn the Great Slash.
- There are two different achievements here; you can’t get both.
Charm Lover Salubra
On your way back into the Forgotten Crossroads, you will find Salubra’s shop. You can buy charms and charm Notches there, and after you collect every charm in the game, you can buy an upgrade called Salubra’s Blessing.
- This upgrade will refill your Soul on every bench.
The Little Fool
The Little Fool is the first thing you will see when you enter the Colosseum of Fools, and he will unlock the trials for you.
You have three Trials where the first one, the Trial of the Warrior, leaves you with a charm Notch and 1000 Geo after you complete it, the Trial of the Conqueror that leaves you with one Pale Ore and 2000 Geo, and the Trial of the Fool that gives you 3000 Geo and nothing else valuable except the Fool achievement. So, good job!
Tiso is an NPC you will first meet in Dirtmouth, where he hints at the existence of the Colosseum. He’ll be resting on the bench in the Colosseum of Fools, and after you go through the Colosseum, his corpse can be seen in Kindom’s Edge, meaning the great warrior who disliked the Stags died in the Colosseum.
Zote the Mighty
Zote is the most annoying and, at the same time, one of the most interesting NPCs. You will save him from death several times throughout the game, and he will always nag about how he didn’t need any help and tell you how he is Zote the Mighty and that he didn’t need your interference. You will then ruin the fool in the Colosseum.
He will move to Dirtmouth and spend the rest of his time with Bretta. You can fight Grey Prince Zote using the Dream Nail on a statue of him Bretta made in her basement. You can fight him ten times, and already after the first time, you see Bretta becoming sad, realizing that Zote isn’t as mighty as he says he is (while carrying some armor from the Colosseum of Fools around). If you talk to him while he is in front of Bretta’s house, he will keep reciting the “Fifty Seven Precepts Of Zote”.
Other than fighting him ten times, he gains more HP during the first four fights. Each time you defeat him, a new adjective gets added to his name – which by the end becomes: the “Invincible, Fearless, Sensual, Mysterious, Enchanting, Vigorous, Diligent, Overwhelming, Gorgeous, Passionate, Terrifying, Beautiful, Powerful, Grey Prince Zote”. During the fourth fight, he deals two masks of damage, and after you defeat him four times, Bretta leaves, and he starts dealing one mask of damage more each time you defeat him.
Which still isn’t all; after you defeat him ten times, the stature turns to gold. This still isn’t all; if you don’t save him, the game completely ignores his existence (even in the Pantheons). There’s still more; in the Hall of Gods, there is a secret room in the ceiling where you can fight tiny Zotes in many forms with a counter, and the goal is to get fifty-seven.
Unn is a higher being who created life in Greenpath. You will get the Shape of Unn charm from her; she’ll just spit it out at you. She is below the Lake of Unn.
The Grey Mourner
The Grey Mournet can be found behind breakable walls in the Resting Grounds. She will give you the Delicate Flower that you need to take all the way to the Queen’s Gardens to the Traidor Lords Child’s Grave to get a Mask Shard without taking damage or using fast travel. Other NPCs will accept the flower, though.
Two are Elderbug and Sheo, but the third one is interesting. The Godseeker will accept the Delicate Flower after you’ve completed the second Pantheon. This will unlock the Delicate Flower ending, but if you didn’t get the Embrace the Void ending, it’ll be locked on that save the file.
- You can offer the White Lady the Delicate Flower, but she will decline.
Tuk is an NPC found behind a breakable wall in the Royal Waterways digging for something, and he will sell you Rancid eggs until you get to eighty in your inventory. She will then refuse to sell more.
Fluke Hermit is an uninfected NPC in the Junk Pit that sensed that the mother is angry – the Flukemarm. She can later be seen looking down on the Godseeker, wishing she’d go away. She will, after that, return to her hidden room and not leave again.
Bardoon is an old caterpillar that climbed to the top of the Kingdom’s Edge to escape the infection. He is aware of the plague, the Pale King, the King’s Brand, and all about the Wyrms. He is not one himself, though.
The Mask Maker
The Mask Maker is bizarre. He knows about the Void entities, the Abyss, and the vessels. He makes masks for the faceless and says that you can’t distinguish a mask from a bug’s face, which is eerie as he has masks and/or faces everywhere.
You can perform Desolate Dive/Descending Dark on him to remove his mask; he’ll say that his face can be another mask. So you can do this several times until you get to see his real face, and it’s scary.
Willoh is a bug who is seen eating a unique fungus in the Queen’s Gardens. You can also make your way and find the room she’s eating in. She has eaten a lot of bugs in Hallownest and wants to eat you too.
There is nothing in this game that you don’t have the potential of taking damage from. The floors will start dealing damage. Oh, wait.
Mister Mushroom is an NPC that ignores you almost throughout the whole time of hunting him down in Hallownest. You have to have the Sporeshroom charm equipped in order even to understand him, and he is only in the game to give you an ending, an achievement, and the least expected cutscene in the game.
He is fascinating, and you can go full-on Game Theory to understand who he is talking to, and doing that is actually really fun. He does realize that you’re there in the end, but then he flies away into the sky, leaving you with no answers.
Troupe Master Grimm or Nightmare King Grimm is the leader of the Grimm Troupe. He is an optional boss, and he’ll give you a charm, a charm Notch, and an epic battle – two epic battles, in fact.
Nightmare King Grimm is the only Dream Boss that doesn’t give you Essence. He calls his fights dances, and they really are like a dance.
These are, to me, the most enjoyable boss fights in Hollow Knight. Everything in this DLC is finely constructed and very balanced.
Brumm & Nymm
Brumm is the bug that will first let you in on the option to banish the Grimm Troupe from Hallownest, as the situation with the Nightmare Heart is very similar to the Radiance’s infection.
You can find him in Deepnest while collecting flames and then later at the lantern where you first summoned the Grimm Troupe, where he will help you break it.
If you do banish the Grimm Troupe, Brumm will disappear as well, and a bug that looks an awful lot like him named Nymm will appear in Dirtmouth.
You can talk to him and get the Carefree Melody charm to replace the Grimchild charm’s place.
The Godseeker comes chained in a coffin in the Junk Pit that you can open with a Simple Key. She is a part of the Godmaster DLC, and in Hollow Knight, the Godseekers have the most powerful minds capable of bringing anything into existence.
She sees herself in a way that is incomparable to how she really looks and keeps continuously insulting you throughout your journey in the Pantheons.
Pale King & White Lady
Pale King is the one that started the events in the game by coming to Hallownest and giving bugs free will creating a functioning society in the process. This made the bugs of Hallownest forget about their light Radiance, leaving only one surviving member of the Moth Tribe to tell the tale – Seer.
Radiance’s revenge was the infection. The Pale King and the White Lady, both creatures of the higher being, plan to keep Radiance a memory. That plan was to make an empty vessel to contain the infection within itself for, hopefully, eternity. Each vessel was made out of Void and an outer shell. For the vessel to be pure, it had to be void of thoughts and feelings, and so what was thought to be the perfect vessel was created – the Hollow Knight.
The Hollow Knight was trained and raised in the White Palace, and his adult form can be seen in the Temple of the Black Egg in chains sealed with the Seal of Binding. The Hollow Knight wasn’t a pure vessel because somehow, he developed either feelings or thoughts for the Radiance to infect and start spreading.
It was never clear how the Hollow Knight was chosen. Still, a memory that you can unlock in the Abyss by Dream Nailing the egg on which you can see your reflection and from which you seemingly hatched from will reveal that you climbed to the top of the Abyss to see the Pale King walking out and the Hollow Knight looking back at you.
The White Lady’s part in this is uncertain; she recognized you as a vessel and even has special dialogues when you have certain charms equipped. She has poor eyesight and often thinks that someone else is in the room with her, other than you. She also thinks that her guardian Dryya is still alive.
The Pale King escaped Hallownest when the deed was done, somehow with his entire palace. The White Lady chained herself with the Seal of Binding in Queen’s Gardens never to move again, but she can be seen in God’s home larger than Hallownest. The Pale King, on the other side, upon entering the White Palace by Dream Nailing the Kingsmould’s corpse where the palace used to be, can be found dead on his throne.
- In the game, the White Lady gives you one half of the King’s soul charm, and you find the second half in the White Palace after hitting the corpse of your dead father. You get most of the explanation of your creation here. You are Soul of Wyrm and Root with the heart of Void.
- You have your pale head and the same vines as the White Lady (the Root), and you’re filled with Void. After getting the full Kinsoul charm, the White Lady will tell you that you may be more special and tell you to go to the Abyss where you will then find the egg, and this is where you get the Void Heart.
Question: Who are the characters in Hollow Knight?
Answer: All the significant NPCs in Hollow Knight are listed in this article.
Question: Is Hornet a vessel?
Answer: Hornet isn’t a vessel.
Question: Who is Hornets dad?
Answer: Hornet is the daughter of the Pale King and Herrah the Beast.