Game Progress Route


This page has a basic recommended progression for beginners. Some classes will find skipping some steps or altering the order easier, but this guide is made with the weakest classes in mind. The DLC is marked separately.

  1. Things Betwixt
  2. Majula
  3. Forest of Fallen Giants
  4. Heide's Tower of Flame
  5. Cathedral of Blue
  6. No-Man's Wharf
  7. The Lost Bastille
  8. Belfry Luna
  9. Sinners' Rise
  10. Huntsman's Copse
  11. Undead Purgatory
  12. Harvest Valley
  13. Earthen Peak
  14. The Grave of Saints
  15. The Pit
  16. The Gutter
  17. Black Gulch
  18. Shaded Woods
  19. Doors of Pharros
  20. Brightstone Cove Tseldora
  21. Lord's Private Chamber
  22. Iron Keep
  23. Belfry Sol
  24. Shrine of Winter
  25. Drangleic Castle
  26. King's Passage
  27. Shrine of Amana
  28. Undead Crypt
  29. Aldia's Keep
  30. Dragon Aerie
  31. Dragon Shrine
  32. Dark Chasm of Old
  33. Memories of the Ancients
  34. Throne of Want



Crown of the Sunken King

  1. Shulva - Sanctum City
  2. Dragon's Sanctum
  3. Dragon's Rest
  4. Cave of the Dead


Crown of the Old Iron King

  1. Brume Tower
  2. Iron Passage
  3. Memory of the Old Iron King


Crown of the Ivory King

  1. Frozen Eleum Loyce
  2. The Cathedral
  3. Old Chaos
  4. Frigid Outskirts (Optional)


World Inter-connectivity

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Quick Walkthrough:

To get to Drangleic Castle as the Emerald Herald asks of you, it is necessary that you collect four Great Souls: The Lost Sinner, Old Iron King, The Rotten and The Duke's Dear Freja. Alternatively you can have a Soul Memory of 1,000,000 souls and be allowed access through the Shrine of Winter Located in Shaded Ruins

The 4 Great Souls:

  1. The Lost Sinner is reached by first going through Forest of Fallen Giants, taking the bird's nest to The Lost Bastille (after defeating The Pursuer) then going through Sinners' Rise. Obtain the Bastille Key to light the far left and right of the arena and make the battle easier.
  2. The Rotten is reached by going down the pit in Majula. To do so, buy the Silvercat Ring from Sweet Shalquoir and jump down the well (or pay Laddersmith Gilligan 3,500 souls to set up a ladder). You can proceed through the Grave of Saints, or simply fall to the lowest platform to skip that area. Continue on until you reach The Gutter, and go downwards until you reach The Black Gulch. The Rotten is at the end of this area.
  3. Old Iron King is more complicated; in Majula, go into the tunnel right of the mansion, go down and pull the lever on the left to open the floodgate, and continue on until you reach Heide's Tower of Flame. Defeating the Dragonrider will lead you to a cleric merchant named Licia of Lindelt. Exhaust all talk options with her and she will return to the moving contraption before the entrance to Heide's Tower of Flame. For 2,000 souls she will move the contraption and allow passage to Huntsman's Copse. Enter Huntsman's Copse and go through there to Harvest Valley. You will need to defeat The Skeleton Lords (Executioner's Chariot is optional) to proceed to this area. Then to Earthen Peak by defeating Covetous Demon. Once you have made it in to Earthen Peak and have reached the second bonfire, you will see a small stone walkway leading up to the center of a large windmill, light a torch and approach this area to burn the windmill and drain the majority of the poison pools in this area. This will make the area boss Mytha, the Baneful Queen dramatically easier. After defeating her, proceed through the opposite end of the room you entered from to reach a lift that will bring you to Iron Keep. Progressing through this area will eventually lead you to Old Iron King.
  4. The Duke's Dear Freja is located in Brightstone Cove Tseldora. To get there, first you must go through the Shaded Woods, a zone which is unlocked by unpetrifying Rosabeth of Melfia who blocks the contraption north of Majula, where Benhart of Jugo sits. Through the Shaded Woods, go to the Shaded Ruins, fight Scorpioness Najka and proceed through the Doors of Pharros zone and reach Brightstone Cove Tseldora.

Accessing the Shrine of Winter:

  1. Start at Majula, go to the Shaded Woods and to the Ruined Forked Road bonfire. Near where you fight the second Flexile Sentry, there is a slightly hidden path that leads to the Shrine. The Shrine of Winter will open after you have defeated the four bosses listed above and lit the primal bonfires associated with them. If you have collected (not possess) a total of 1 million souls in your playthrough (or 6 million in NG+), you can enter the Shrine of Winter WITHOUT killing ANY of the 4 Primal Bosses, though it is easier to kill them.

Finding the King:

  1. Follow the path to the end to reach Drangleic Castle. Lead the Royal Swordsmen to the two golems and kill them in front of them to open the door to the castle.
  2. Continue through the castle, and you will find Nashandra, who beseeches you to find Vendrick. Kill enemies near the switch golem until you enable the elevator, and take the key that opens the passage to the Looking Glass Knight.
  3. You can now access Shrine of Amana. Defeat Demon of Song to proceed through to the Undead Crypt. After defeating Velstadt, the Royal Aegis, collect the King's Ring in the room behind him, ignoring the large roaming hollow Vendrick for now. He is an optional encounter made possible later on.


  1. Equip the King's Ring near Vendrick's door in the Shaded Woods to open it. You will find it by going to the Ruined Forked Road bonfire and taking the middle path. Continue into Aldia's Keep. Which will then lead in to Dragon Aerie and then Dragon Shrine. Here you will find the Ancient Dragon who will give you an important key item called the Ashen Mist Heart.
  2. Go back to the Forest of Fallen Giants, Cardinal Tower bonfire, go down the ladder, take a right across the small bridge the halberd wielding Hollow Royal Soldier resides on, use the Soldier Key on the locked door and make a left from there. Equip the King's Ring near Vendrick's door to open it. Interact with the dead giant to enter the Memory of Jeigh. Kill the Giant Lord for the next key item, Giant's Kinship.
  3. Warp back to the Drangleic Castle, King's Gate bonfire, use the same method as before to open the door and fight the final bosses: Throne Watcher and Throne Defender and Nashandra. Congratulations on making it this far! Though, the game is hardly over... greater challenges await you in New Game Plus and beyond. Good luck, and happy hunting!

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    • Anonymous

      29 Jul 2020 16:25  

      I'm doing platinum runs for all three games and I have to admit - DS2 on NG+ and above is far more difficult then DS1 was. Which is gut. Especially when u swing with Cryptsword which like to swing 180 degrees from locked enemy :D

      • Anonymous

        26 May 2020 10:37  

        The dlc is too hard. Going from the main game to the dlc now, for the first time, the difficulty doesnt make any sense.

        • Anonymous

          23 May 2020 22:14  

          wish me luck, 3 hours just to setup my controller. idk how many i need to beat this. beat the first one almost 2 weeks.

          • Anonymous

            17 Feb 2020 10:31  

            I remember walking back into game stop throwing the game in the managers face and yelling because I kept losing “what kind of a game is this” I remember saying ... 3 days later I bought it back and after a week I finally beat it. Now, I have all 3 games, statue, and a friggin t shirt that says “you died”... this game along with the others is beyond excellent. Okay, I’ll stfu now.

            • Anonymous

              09 Dec 2019 05:16  

              To clarify: The Wiki doesn't state this, but if one desired to do so, you can get 4 ascetics and kill one of the holders of their respective Great Soul 3 additional times after the first time to bypass the rest of them. Not recommended, considering you lose a lot of experience with the game, but it's always there.

              • Anonymous

                06 Mar 2019 16:18  

                I went to NG+4 but didn't find anything interesting. Enemy power based on your stats. Even if STR 99, you still have to slash enough times to kill the enemy. NG++ is not really attractive. If you choose to enter the champion covenant, normal enemies can also easily destroy you. Now I don't know if I will continue NG+5 or goodbye. The fact that you are weaker than enemies makes me bored. I want to become stronger, the game always makes you weak in every way. I play on pc sotfs and use mouse + keyboard + autohotkey instead of using controller hand. I know the game series souls because of the negative reviews of ds2. Now I have understood somewhat of the problem. I realized this game is only suitable for many people but I like solo. Actually more than 3 months and died many times to extreme stress... I chose the knight class and this is just my idle thoughts. Thanks and goodbye!

                • Anonymous

                  26 Feb 2019 23:02  

                  Man i hated ds2 until i got to ruin sentinels. It was then i realized i was playing over encumbered and i couldn't roll and kept dying. *****ing great game afterwards.

                  • Anonymous

                    07 Jan 2019 00:00  

                    Playing as a mage for the first time in any souls game. DS2 feels like it was made for mage players, so many damn spells littered everywhere.

                    • Anonymous

                      27 Nov 2018 11:28  

                      I'm only at Forrest of Fallen Giants and don't want to play this any more. By far the worst Souls game.

                      • Anonymous

                        02 Nov 2018 03:26  

                        Hold on. Is the shrine of winter DLC or not? I've collected the four old souls, picked up the stupid red orb from freja, lit their damn primal bonfires, and collected 1.6m souls and the bloody thing still won't open. If it's not DLC then what the hell is going on?!

                        • Anonymous

                          15 Sep 2018 03:02  

                          i remember fighting the old iron king and rekindling the primal bonfire. I think this is just the mandela effect cause i do remember that there is a door near the primal bonfire in iron keep that you can access and that it has a fountain that is similar from what you would find in shrine of winter. Can someone tell me where i can find that?

                          • Anonymous

                            28 Jul 2018 19:17  

                            I went into the castle and the emralde herald before I skipped that warning and now I'm in the bonfire after the 2 dragonriders boss fight and I can't access a bunch of areas why is that.. also a bunch of new areas popped up but can't access them ..

                            • Anonymous

                              02 Apr 2018 05:16  

                              On the section called "Accessing the Shrine of Winter," it says 6 million souls are required to open it in NG+. I thought it was 2 million.

                              • Anonymous

                                03 Aug 2017 10:51  

                                Where is the npc progression roadmap like darksouls 3 wiki and bloodborne wiki? I don't wanna miss anything but do i need to read a book for it? Or am i being dumb and just not looking in the right place?

                                • Anonymous

                                  26 May 2017 06:06  

                                  I'd like to point out that it says that it takes "6 million (Souls) in NG+" to open the Shrine of Winter, which is incorrect, the required amount being 2 million in NG+.

                                  • Anonymous

                                    23 Dec 2016 02:35  

                                    Undead Crypt needs to be done before you can access Drangleic Castle. You need the kings ring to access the castle, which you get at the end of undead crypt. This game progress route should be updated to reflect that.

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