Bloodborne: Forbidden Woods to Shadow of Yharnam

By Staff
15 March 2015 20:16 GMT

Our Bloodborne guide continues on through the mysterious Forbidden Woods.

Bloodborne gets a little bit outdoors-y now with a trip through the Forbidden Woods. We start in the Cathedral Ward, however, so head to Grand Cathedral lantern there.

The first thing you should do, if you didn’t after the battle with Vicar Amelia, is examine the altar to receive the password for an upcoming door. You just need to watch the short cutscene.

Backtrack down the big stairs, facing the two souped-up Gravekeepers and then the Axe Reaper and what’s likely to be four more Gravekeepers. Finally, deal with the Hound.

When you’re sure the area is clear and you won’t have any nasty surprises, pull the lever to open the big gate where you can see two Axe Reapers gadding about. Take them both down, but make sure you don’t tackle both at once. Retreat back to the stairs if you need more space.

Once they’re down you can search the large, empty arena for five Madman’s Knowledge items, then go through the metal gate on the far side. There are two more Gravekeepers beyond, and they’re unusually armed – one has a lantern, and another has a flamethrower. Once they’re down, look around for a Crazed Crow near a Thick Coldblood, and then another Thick Coldblood sitting off on its own. Near this second item drop is a gate with a lever, which we won’t go through right now.


Instead, head off to the right and down two flights of stairs until you find 12 Poison Knives. Take the stairs down until you hit bottom and look for the door in the far left corner. Speak to the character here twice and tell her the chapel is safe. (Next time you die, stop to speak with her in the Cathedral to receive a gesture and Blood of Arianna.) The window here doesn’t have much to say, though.

Go back down the street in the other direction and you’ll be attacked by a Henchman just past the stairs. A little further on there’s another Henchman, this time with a rifle, and a Half-beast – a sort of souped-up Henchman. They’re not that tough to beat but getting Countershots on them is much harder, and they have good range, so be careful. Two more melee Henchmen will rush you as you move forwards.

Passing through these streets, look really carefully in the corners of the alcoves to the left to find the Black Church attire set.

The next two lit windows don’t have much to say – pretty dull corner of town, really – so head towards the stairs. As soon as you approach you’ll come under fire, so dash into the little nook to the left, where as it happens you will also be able to grab 18 Poison Knives. Wait for a gap in the barrage, then run up the stairs and dash left again. You’re not really safe here, either – there are a bunch of Henchmen, including one with a rifle, and a Half-beast to fight. Take the battle to them before they all aggro and mob you.

There are two items gleaming ahead but the one by the upper ledge is kind of a trap. if you were to stand by it for longer than it takes to grab the item and leave, a Crazed Crow and an Infected will fall down through the ceiling and attack. It won’t happen if you’re quick. For your pains you get two Blood Vials and a Thick Coldblood.

Got your stuff? Good. Take the ladder up to read a note, then use the almost invisible ladder to one side of this raised, lit area to shortcut down to the rooftops, then another ladder to the ground near the gate to where the two Axe Reapers were. Return to the gate with a lever that you ignored before, but go through this time. Head down the stairs to kill another Axe Reaper and loot the nearby two Blood Stone Shards.

There’s a path leading down to the left on narrow stairs; it goes back to where you found some gear and avoided a portal on your way through this area before, so ignore it.

Instead, continue on through the next gate and battle the multiple Crazed Crows and two Brutes in the lower area. Just past these guys you can find a Monocular, and then go on and around to find a Crazed Crow guarding three Blood Stone Shards.

I’m sure you can see the enormous Reaper ahead, but don’t go for it yet; look past and spot an Imp. Kill that first by running past our burly friend, than knock him down, too. You can then grab five Blood Stone Shards.

Move on to the right and take the stairs to the left. Pass through the room filled with vases to a chest with a Tempering Blood Gemstone. The door here is locked, so backtrack again to the area where there were two Axe Reapers.

There’s yet another path out of here, a big stone arch on the left as you enter from our last sortie. Go in and take out the Crazed Crow and Infected who tried to ambush you earlier. On the right side of this balcony you can smash some stuff to find two Twin Blood Stone Shards, and opposite that is 12 Shining Coins.

Now take the hallway on the right. There’s a friendly NPC Hunter ahead if you checked the altar back at the start of this section. Grab the Tempering Blood Gemstone and then chat to him for a bit of a plot update, before moving on to the stairs on the right, where you can grab an Antidote. Go on down the stairs and use the password to open the door.

The man inside won’t chat but trying will net you a Madman’s Knowledge. Take the stairs to the right, go through the door and then go down the stairs to reach the Forbidden Woods.


Forbidden Woods

Finally here! If in doubt in this area, follow the yellow lanterns.

After you leave the tower, walk down the stairs and immediately turn right to find a Thick Coldblood tucked back behind the trees.

Follow the path left and down the hill, eventually to meet a Frenzied Henchman. He’s not as scary as he looks. Be sure to grab the Twin Blood Stone Shard up and to the right as you progress along the path, before the intersection ahead.

At the intersection you’ll be attacked by a Henchman and then be able to collect two Pebbles.

Of the three paths here, take the one continuing on from your previous course past the Henchman, heading up the hill. There’s an Axe Brute to deal with; sneak up on him for best results. Keep going to pick up a Madman’s Knowledge and Adept Blood Gemstone.

Go back down to the intersection and take the right fork (in the direction you’re now facing). Here’s the Forbidden Woods Lantern. Light it and then continue past to find a cell and two Crazed Crows near three Antidotes tucked around the corner. Beyond this is 100% trap: you can’t get to the path below safely.

Instead, go up and over the bridge. killing the two Henchmen (the distant one has a rifle) as you go. As soon as you cross, turn left and go around the corner where you’ll find a Twin Blood Stone Shard.

Back on the previous path continue on, but be very careful passing through the boards on the ground – see all the skeletons? This road is trapped with a spiked log. Foil the schemes of whoever wants to off you (everyone?) by hugging the left wall. Ah ha! Tricked the trickers.

Safely past the trap, look right to spot a Frenzied Henchman. If you kill him then move to the edge of the nearby cliff, you can drop Pebbles on the heads of the enemies below. The Hounds will race up and attack you, possible dying of fire along the way. In any case, clearing them out here helps later on.

Go down the hill along the path and collect the Thick Coldblood. Carefully lure the next two Henchmen to you with Pebbles. Now, you could rush forward and face the there of them that’re over there, or you could go back to the cliff and jump down on the nearest Henchman like some sort of ninja. That leaves just two more Henchmen to take down the old-fashioned way. The reason we suggest doing it carefully like this is that one of them will throw oil at you, and the other one has a torch, and it is a nightmare of flaming, screaming, firey doom. Anyway, however you get rid of them all, you can now grab ten Quicksilver Bullets, a Twin Blood Stone Shard and two Blood Vials.

Moving on again, stop when the scenery opens up a bit. If you push through the tall grass on the narrow path on the right you can kill an Imp and three Crazed Crows. Go back to the main path and cross to the other side, looking for yellow flowers. There’s a Frenzied Henchman up here, and in the burnt house you can find three Beast Blood Pellets.

On the left path is a Thick Coldblood. Now head towards the settlement ahead; between you and the temptingly lit gate is another spiked log trap, so go around to the left, taking the branching path to the house with the red lantern to chat with an NPC (you’ll receive the Tonsil Stone if you haven’t already got it elsewhere). The item by the ledge here is just Quicksilver Bullets, and it’s best to skip them and first go behind the house to quickly kill the Hounds in cages; if you’ve been quick and silent none will have bust out.

Keep on down this path and look for an opening to the right leading to a Crazed Crow and two patrolling Hounds; just wait a bit and maybe run in a circle to aggro them if they don’t turn up. Once they’re dead, climb the ladder and kill the three Crazed Crows before collecting the White Church Hat, White Church Garb, Surgical Long Gloves and White Church Trousers/Dress. These have pretty good Poison resist, so bear that in mind if you find yourself being exposed regularly.

Go back to where the Hound cages were and take the path into the cave; look for the lanterns off to one side if you can’t find this path. Move down the ramp then turn to see two Antidotes. Keep going through until you reach a large room. This area is covered in a toxic cloud, so you need to keep moving through it quickly, use Antidotes, wear your best poison resist gear, and try to avoid prolonged exposure. Wait patiently between dips for your buffer to drain fully. The gas also blocks vision considerably, and there are loads of enemies about, including Reapers and Poison Worms. Make sure you use weapons that hit low to the ground (overhead strikes are good) on the latter.

Start by walking around the corner to the right (on dry land) to grab a Frenzied Coldblood. Continue by chucking a Pebble at the nearest Reaper; draw it out and kill it outside the poison cloud.

Look ahead and spot two Reapers. Move cautiously towards the left one, which is sitting down, by hugging the cavern wall. There are Poison Worms all around it. Throw a Molotov at them so they come over where you can kill them safely. If (when) the Reaper aggros, draw it back to the entrance so you can fight it comfortably. You may need to use Pebbles on it.

Make a dash for the little hillock the Reaper was sitting on, where you can lure out more Poison Worms. Make a dash for the next bit of safe ground off to the left, but then pause and look around until you see an item on your right. If all the Worms are dead you ought to be able to run over, grab the Nourishing Blood Gemstone and then get back to your island without too much fuss.

Ignore the cave just ahead; let’s go back and get the other treasures in this room. Go back to the entrance and then step boldly into the middle of the room towards the rocks ahead to aggro a bunch of three Poison Worms. You know the drill – lure them back to safety and off ’em. Then you can run to the safe bit of ground lit with a green glow, where you should be able to find a Dirty Blood Gemstone. Look to the far right corner for another cave, and more importantly, follow it through to the little bit of safe ground with an item on it, which you can hopefully run out and grab without aggroing the Reaper (unless you want to). The item is a Frenzied Coldblood. Go back inside a small cave and climb a ladder. Climb the second ladder above it, too, to enter the graveyard and be back in Yharnam – temporarily.


Bloodborne guide: Forbidden Woods to Shadow of Yharnam

In the graveyard, look ahead and left to find a Coldblood Dew. Open the gate with the lever here; it leads back to Iosefka’s Clinic, so now if you die you have a quick shortcut back.

Take the other gate, in the corner, to go down some stairs and battle an Infected and grab a Madman’s Knowledge. There’s a ladder near the well leading to some Crazed Crows – a couple just on your right, and four on the next rooftop. Take ’em down, then cross the rooftop to enter the next building, avoiding a portal if it opens.

Inside, turn right and open the door, battling a Cranium Creature and collecting Iosefka’s Blood Vial and the Cainhurst Summons. Turn around and head back all the way to the end, ignoring the path on the right, to find a room with a chest containing a Communion Rune. There may be Cranium Creatures waiting for you; it depends on whether you’ve sent NPCs to Iosekfa.

That’s all for here, so head back to the Lantern and use it to go back to the Forbidden Woods. (Again, don’t go down the path we ignored; there’s an optional boss here whom you should leave for later to avoid closing a side quest.)

Forbidden Woods

Go back to where the Hounds wait in cages. Take a right just past the cages and continue past the house, killing the Crazed Crow and two Hounds, then circling around the boulder to the right to kill a Henchman and go past into the house on the right to grab four Blue Elixir – the lever here just shuts this gate. Back outside, go back through the gate and around the big house a little higher up. Be careful; there’s a Death Dealer just behind it you can kill in order to grab – six Blood Vials?? Not worth it, but you need this guy down in order to be safe here.

On the other side of the house you’ll find a doorway, and inside there’s a Beast Roar. Go back outside and go forward until you see a bunch of Henchmen on a roof, including one hiding just to the left of the ramp down. Once they’re dead, including the two ahead who throw Molotovs, drop down to the ledge where you’ll find 14 Molotov Cocktails.

Take the plunge down into the water and beat up the Undead Crawlers. With the ledge you dropped from at your back, take the left path to find a Frenzied Henchman you can sneak attack, and two Twin Blood Stone Shards. After grabbing this, do a 180 and cross over to the other side enter the tunnel to find another two Twin Blood Stone Shards and a door at the end. On the other side are three Pungent Blood Cocktails.

Exit the house through the path on the left and kill the Henchmen and Frenzied Henchman. This area is littered with pitfall traps; look for the wooden boards. One path out of here goes back to the water you just left. Take the other, entering the house ahead and take out three more Henchmen (one has a gun) to collect four Pungent Blood Cocktails.

Moving forward, take out the Henchman patrol and then the one sitting next to the house to grab the five Blood Vials nearby. Turn around after collecting them and you should see a stone gate to the side of the house you just exited. Don’t go through – traps, of course – just take note of it; the path to the right of it goes back to the Hound cages, a place you should by now consider a second home, if you need a shortcut.

Instead, go back to the bonfire near the pitfall trap, where you killed some Henchman, and pass it on the left, taking a small path around behind some houses to kill a Henchman with a gun. You can then go all the way around to find the entrances to the houses; the first one is empty, but the second one has six Beast Blood Pellets.

Back at the bonfire, go down the path to the left to get back to the water. If you continue on all the way to the end you’ll spot a path on the left with a bunch of Henchmen and a wooden ramp. Climb that and take out the lone rifleman Henchman waiting for you.

Our next destination is down the path ahead, but proceed with caution, as you’ll come under cannon fire, which may insta-kill you. You can use the houses to shelter, so clear out the Henchmen as you go; there are two in the second house on the left and two in the last house on the right. There’s also a Frenzied Henchman in the last house on the left, along with four Beast Blood Pellets.

Make your way up to the cannon and kill the Henchman. Approach the house ahead and look around its right corner to grab a Twin Blood Stone Shard before entering. Take the stairs down, follow the path left and out the door (not down the ramp), drop down to the ledge and kill the Frenzied Henchman. Climb up the ladder and wander through the corridor, carefully picking your way across the boards between the gears to grab the eight Poison Knives on the left. Through the nearby door you’ll find another three Poison Knives. Look around for a friendly NPC and send him to the chapel for a reward – but be aware that he will kill everyone else there, so if you want them alive, send him to Iosefka.

Back inside, cross to the furthest bit of machinery, then drop down to the item below, which is a Cannon. Jump down again, then go down the small ramp you ignored before, and battle the Mutant Henchman; watch out for its longer reach and poison attacks after its head changes form. There’s a Madman’s Knowledge nearby. Once you’ve grabbed it, move to the other end of this area and cross the bridge to fight another Mutant Henchman.

Head up the ramp to the house on the right, grabbing the Twin Bloodstones from the nearby ledge before entering, then take the lift. Go up the stairs and grab the four Antidotes. Open the gate to open a shortcut back to the Lantern. Gosh, it’s been quite a trek, hasn’t it?

Take the lift back down and return to the main path to find a Frenzied Coldblood, then go along to meet your first two Snake Clusters. They’re easy to smack down as they have very low stun resistance. Once they’re dead, grab the six Shining Coins, and go around the big stone marker to find another couple of Snake Clusters.

Keep on the left as you advance, taking out two more Snake Clusters and grab the Twin Blood Stone Shard. When the grassy path meets the stone one, cross over and continue on to kill another two Snake Clusters and grab a Madman’s Knowledge and two Twin Blood Stone Shards a little further along (hug the right wall to find it).

There are two more Snake Clusters and a Mutant Henchman on the way to the fire, and two Snake Clusters and a Twin Blood Stone Shard on the other side. Then: two more Snake Clusters! Isn’t this exciting? It’s like Christmas, only instead of presents, there’s snakes.

There’s another set of Twin Bloodstones on the far side of the stone path, guarded by another Snake Cluster, if you want to have an explore now that it’s a bit safer here. Look further ahead from here to see a Madman’s Knowledge. Grab that before returning to the path.

Moving along the path, take the first branch to the right and go up the hill and back a bit to face two more Snake Clusters and – just for variety – a Mutant Henchman. Then you can grab two Twin Blood Stone Shards.

Hug the right wall as you push forward. Some excitement: a Giant Snake Clusters. I find waiting for a gap in the spitting projectiles, then dodging forward gets you behind them pretty easy; just keep circling behind and stabbing their butts. Tails. Whatever.

After you beat the first one, grab the Thick Coldblood on the right, and go around the stone marker for the Cold Sea Rune. Turn around and look for the little path leadinf gurther up the hill, back towards the start of this area, for a Twin Bloodstone Shard.

Go back to the main path. A Giant Snake Cluster and four Snake Clusters await you. If you run down and get behind the weird cactus thing on the left, you can usually block the Giant Snake Cluster’s venom spits and lure out the babies one by one. Then, chuck a rock or a Molotov at the big one to make it start to move towards you, so you’ll be able to get behind it; the fire blocks you otherwise.

This area is a maze of twisting paths full of baddies, and it’s super easy to get lost. There’s treasure everywhere, but you have to watch out for multiple Giant Snake Clusters, Snake Clusters and Mutant Henchmen. If you aggro baddies and run away, have a care to go straight back to where you came from and not get lost and end up in a worse situation. Remember: lanterns light the way.

If you explore carefully you’ll find Shining Coins, a Blood Stone Chunk,
two lots of Frenzied Coldblood, the Graveyard gear set, some Twin Blood Shards. There’s at least one item guarded by two Giant Snake Clusters in a tight corner which I chose to ignore.

You know you’re on the right path after you meet a Crazed Pigs, but hopefully you’ve grown enough since you met the last one that you don’t panic as a result. Eventually you’ll come to some water with fireflies on it, and then head left until you reach the cave.

There are two Cranium Creatures waiting for you, but your reward is a Madman’s Knowledge just up the hill on the left. Two Mutant Cranium Creatures are a little further ahead – watch out for their magic projectiles. There’s an Anti-Clockwise Metamorphosis Rune nearby. Further into the cave, another Madman’s Knowledge can be found near another Mutant Cranium Creature. This pattern then repeats in reverse – a Mutant Cranium Creature and a Madman’s Knowledge. Then you’re done, so head out.

Cut across the water – no roads, no rules! – and head up the hill to the right when you reach the other side. There’s a Mutant Henchman there; once he’s down, take the path through the building to the lift. Another shortcut opened, like a boss.

Hey so speaking of bosses we’re almost there. Go back out and down to the water, then follow the path to the left until you reach the large tree roots. There are a couple of Undead Crawlers here, but you can also grab a Dissipating Lake Rune. Move on through the delightful swamp to find another three Undead Crawlers and a Crazed Pig before collecting a Sharp Blood Gemstone. (If possible, patiently pull all the Crawlers away so you can backstab the Pig).

Now look for two fires; walk between them and you’ll hit an intersection. The left path goes to the boss – so go right, obviously, and open the gate at the end to kill a Mutant Henchman and grab the Clockwise Metamorphosis Rune.

What a marathon. You may now take the other path if you wish to battle the Shadow of Yharnam.

Back to Bloodborne guide.

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