Grappling is a combat mechanic in Dragon's Dogma.


Dragon's Dogma - Hold02

Grapple hold - "Nelson" on a goblin

Dragon's Dogma - Hold01

Grapple hold - "Pinned" Saurian

Grappling allows the Arisen or pawn to grab, hold, pin or restrain enemies in position, allowing others to attack without risk. When an enemy is out of battle position, the attacker delivers additional damage to a helpless enemy.

Only Fighters, Warriors, Assassins and Mystic Knights can grapple foes, other vocations can pick up, carry or throw downed or staggered enemies, but not grapple.

Once grappled foes will struggle to free themselfs, just as the Arisen can struggle when grabbed by larger foes - eventually they will break free - additionally grappling consumes thus Stamina and if stamina is fully depleted the hold will be broken prematurely.

In some cases, to be grappled a foe must either be stunned, staggered, knocked down, or in some other way incapacitated. Depending on the foe they will either be held in a 'Nelson' hold (e.g., bandits), or 'pinned' to the ground (e.g., Saurians).

Giant enemies cannot be grappled, but can be climbed; whilst small enemies such as Spiders cannot be grappled or climbed, but instead can be picked up and thrown.


I believe I can fly

After attempting to 'grapple' a harpy in flight ..

  • Grappling is done by holding the "grab" button, whilst carrying is done by tapping the same button.
  • Grappling has the effect of greatly reducing an enemy's defense, and prevents them attacking, casting, or moving.
  • Pressing attack whilst grappling will kick the enemy, and release it.
  • Heavier and larger characters are better at grappling, and lose less stamina when doing so.
  • Undead may grapple their targets - the correct response is to grapple back, or if held, attempt to shake lose.
  • Vocations that cannot grapple have the option of grabbing, carrying, and throwing enemies.
  • Most giant creatures have a variant of a grapple attack; for example a Chimera may grab with the snake's head, or hold down with the front paws whilst mauling the victim.
  • Attempts to "grab" a harpy in flight may result in the Arisen cling to the harpy's legs in a situational reverse of when harpies grab humans - some degree of control over the flight is possible - for details see Harpy § Flying