The king fly agaric has a 10-15 cm wide cap and a stalk up to 20 cm long and 2.5 cm thick. The fruiting bodies are spherically closed when young and covered by a yellowish velum universale, which ruptures when the cap is parted and remains on the cap skin as warty, scaly, white to yellowish remains. The cap itself is yellow or leathery to dark brown in color. Beneath the cap’s covering layer, the flesh has a narrow stripe of yellow, yellow-brown, or greenish color. The free and bulbous lamellae are very crowded and have a white to yellowish coloration. The spore powder is white. The white stalk, full in young specimens, becomes hollow with age. It terminates at the base in a tuber up to 3 cm thick, which has several flocculent scales. The pendulous ring in the upper half of the stem is ephemeral.
The species is distributed in temperate to boreal Europe, colonizing the original range of spruce, it has been reported in northern Italy, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Norway, Sweden and Finland. In Scandinavia, it is widespread north to the 69th parallel.