Cerberus is a level 318 hellhound boss that is located in her lair, deep beneath the Taverley Dungeon in the cave entrance in the north-east part of the hellhound area which is found beyond the poisonous spiders. Cerberus requires a Slayer level of 91, along with a task of hellhounds or herself in order to be fought. In the event of a hellhound task, wild pies may be used to boost the player's Slayer level.
As the Guardian of the River of Souls, Cerberus protects the souls of the departed from whatever troubles they may face on their journey by the people of Arceuus. Despite her important task, Cerberus longs to escape her post, and has successfully done so on multiple occasions; however, she was quickly captured and returned. Cerberus has killed many adventurers who have stumbled into her lair, with one of her more recent kills dropping a damaged soul bearer which the Arceuus Elders inspected and eventually discarded when they could not repair it.
Cerberus drops three different crystals; the eternal, pegasian and primordial crystals which are used to upgrade infinity, ranger and dragon boots to the eternal, pegasian and primordial boots respectively, the best-in-slot boots for their respective combat styles. She can also drop the smouldering stone at a much better rate compared to her lesser brethren, along with the jar of souls and the hellpuppy pet.
A dwarf multicannon cannot be set up inside Cerberus' Lair; if attempted, you will receive the message: You cannot place the cannon here, it would melt.
When approaching her, Cerberus will become aggressive. She may attack with magic, ranged and melee attacks, each with a max hit of 23. The magic attack appears as a grey ball, the ranged attack appears as a ball of spikes, and the melee attack is her biting. Interestingly, she may use the melee attack at range.
Cerberus has three special attacks that she may use under certain circumstances:
- She attacks in quick succession with magic followed by ranged and melee. She will do this at the start of every fight and approximately every 30 seconds afterwards.
- She spits three balls of fire — indicated by her growling — on the ground, one at the player and two in random spots around the room. Standing on or near one will deal continuous damage. She will do this at random when below 200 health.
- She summons three souls — indicated by her howling — that come from the river behind her and attack the player with each combat style. Each attack will drain 30 prayer (15 with spectral spirit shield equipped) if blocked or 30 hitpoints if not blocked. She may do this approximately every 30 seconds after she is below 400 health.
If a player has recently fought the boss, a line of fire will spawn between the entrance and the boss; stepping over this will deal 5 damage each way. The line of fire may be bugged, as it will not despawn unless the challenger dies to Cerberus or goes back through the line of fire after it respawns and if the challenger comes back after teleporting away mid-fight. Cerberus will restore all of its health if there are no players in its lair (it only has an examine option when this happens).
Once defeated, Cerberus will respawn in five seconds.
Drop rates estimated based on 93,825 kills from the Old School RuneScape Wiki drop log project, unless otherwise cited.
The average value of one kill is 94,532.89, excluding the loot from clue scrolls.
There is a 1 in 128 chance of hitting the unique drop table. Below lists the effective drop rates.
|Rune 2h sword||1||4/128||37,700||38,400|
|Black d'hide body||1||3/128||7,356||8,088|
|Rune full helm||1||3/128||20,644||21,120|
|Runite ore||5 (noted)||3/128||56,865||9,600|
|Dragon bones||20 (noted)||5/128||45,680||1,920|
|Wine of zamorak||15 (noted)||5/128||29,895||0|
|Fire orb||20 (noted)||4/128||27,460||3,600|
|Uncut diamond||5 (noted)||3/128||14,190||600|
|Key master teleport||3||2/128||Not sold||18|
There is a 3/128 chance of rolling the rare drop table.
|Loop half of key||1||1/270.95; 1/268.93[d 1]||9,732||60|
|Tooth half of key||1||1/270.95; 1/268.93[d 1]||9,760||60|
|Uncut sapphire||1||1/1,092.27; 1/554.67[d 1]||556||15|
|Rune 2h sword||1||1/1,820.44||37,700||38,400|
|Uncut emerald||1||1/2,184.53; 1/1,109.33[d 1]||742||30|
|Rune sq shield||1||1/2,730.67||22,545||23,040|
|Silver ore||100 (noted)||1/2,730.67||5,600||4,500|
|Uncut ruby||1||1/4,369.07; 1/2,218.67[d 1]||1,364||60|
|Dragon med helm||1||1/5,461.33||58,933||60,000|
|Rune spear||1||1/5,765.37; 1/668.94[d 1][d 2]||11,963||12,480|
|Shield left half||1||1/11,530.73; 1/1,337.89[d 1][d 2]||65,595||66,000|
|Nature talisman||1||1/11,650.84; 1/5,916.44[d 1]||689||2|
|Dragon spear||1||1/15,374.31; 1/1,783.85[d 1][d 2]||37,309||37,440|
|Uncut diamond||1||1/17,476.27; 1/8,874.67[d 1]||2,838||120|
|Rune javelin||5||1/34,952.53; 1/17,749.33[d 1]||830||1,200|
Pre-release work-in-progress model of Cerberus
A piece of artwork depicting a player facing Cerberus.
- In Greek and Roman mythology, Cerberus is a multi-headed hellhound with a serpent's tail, a mane of snakes, and a lion's claws, guarding the entrance of the Greek underworld to prevent the dead from escaping and the living from entering. This reflects the area around Cerberus as it guards the rivers that take souls to the Underworld and explains the very rare drop Jar of souls.
- Cerberus stands on a trapdoor as a reference to the book/film Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (or Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone), in which a three-headed dog guarded a trapdoor. This also helps explain its four stone/crystal drops.
- At one point, if a player had killed the last Cerberus of their task but also happened to die in the room, the player would be unable to recover their items as entering the boss chamber required the player to be on a hellhounds task. This was changed so that the player can enter the chamber, but is simply unable to attack the boss.
- Along with this change, the summoned spirits it calls were also given weapons so that challengers could easily identify the combat style they would be using.
- Upon release, the summoned souls would continue attacking the player even if Cerberus died. This is no longer the case with the 16 March 2017 update.
- Cerberus is the first Slayer boss whose attacks are fully protected by protection prayers, the second being the Alchemical Hydra.
- When bones are used on Cerberus, a message appears saying "Those aren't Cerby snacks". This is a reference to "Scooby Snacks" from Scooby-Doo.
- About three weeks after the release of Cerberus, Mod Ronan did a stream in which he killed Cerberus 1,000 times to show off the possible loot.