A short but crowded loop with some great rewards.
Dark Souls 3: Profaned Capital and Irithyll Dungeon loop
Here we are in the Profaned Capital. Let’s start not by making the crawl to the boss door, but by tidying up and treasure hunting in an optional loop, furthering two NPC quests. This page assumes you’ve obtained the Old Cell Key and unlocked all the shortcuts in Irithyll Dungeon.
From the Profaned capital bonfire, take the ladder inside the tower (not the one accessible outside), and then walk through some broken wall, dropping down to ground level. Move around the tower in an anti-clockwise direction (there’s nothing the other way) until you aggro a gargoyle warrior – or run right past it, skipping to the next paragraph. When the gargoyle goes down, look for a ladder leading up the outside of the tower. Climb this to collect two Rusted Coins. You can always drop back into the tower from here if you fall out or off accidentally. For now, return to the bottom of the ladder.
Continuing around the tower, look ahead for a wooden ramp leading to a narrow corridor. You’ll see a Crystal Lizard ahead once you enter – but there’s a deadly pitfall just in front of you! Ignore the lizard and turn left, and then right, to attack a different Crystal Lizard. You can then continue along this corridor and turn right so you can see the other lizard. They both drop Twinkling Titanite.
All paths lead to Rome in this area so go grab the Rusted Coins in one corner you probably noticed earlier. You can then exit this area via the other corner at this end to end up on a boardwalk above a swamp. Turn right and walk right to the end to collect some Blooming Purple Moss Clump. The swamp below inflicts toxin rather than poison, so your poison resist gear won’t help, and normal Purple Moss Clumps won’t cure it. It’s also far more deadly and eats your health bar quickly, so you may want to put the Blooming Purple Moss Clumps in your quick slots or tool belt.
Before dropping down, you might want to put arrows in the six crawlers down here; if they go under the planks where you can’t shoot them, just hang out for a bit without shooting and they usually get bored and wander off – or at least hold still when you yourself wander off to get a better angle on them.
See the item glow on the island? Drop down, then rush over to grab the Purging Stone. From this perch you can look around without exposure to toxicity. There’s a cave area tucked away to one side of here; you can see the entrance under the boardwalk. There are three crawlers in there you can lure from the safety of the island, plus one crawler in the same area you can’t see from your island, but who isn’t a bother. Brave this area to collect the Cursebite Ring, then turn around to spot another item glow with a Poison Gem. Run back to your island and chow down on a Blooming Purple Moss Clump.
From the same little island, scan the wall of the building and locate the ladder. You can quickly nip across to the tumbled masonry below to get to it. Climb up and follow the roof around. Ignore the opening where you can see a sleeping fist beast and continue to go around the roof. Climb the stairs to fight a tough NPC.
This fine fellow is very deadly. As well as sending stacks of Soul Darts at you, he has a huge mace that also does fire damage. Luckily, he’s not bright. Stand where you can get a headshot but not aggro him, ping him and run (not sprint) right back around to the ladder. The trick is to get moving even before you see your arrow strike. If he pauses to cast his spell, as he usually does, it’s easy enough to evade his subsequent notice. Give it a good 30 seconds standing by the ladder, and he forgets you exist. You can cheese him entirely this way, the big twit. He drops Logan’s Scroll, which you can return to Orbeck to unlock further sorceries.
You can walk all around the rooftop after gormless is gone, and collect 18 Poison Arrows. Enter the little cupola and you can drop down to a structure in the room with the sleeping fist beast to collect Wrath of the Gods, a heck of a miracle. Look down to see a treasure chest; yes, it’s a Mimic. It drops the Court Sorcerer’s Staff when you kill it. If you cheese it and use Spook before you drop down, and the Mimic dies some distance from the fist beast, you can grab it and make for the exit without waking it. Otherwise, you can just sprint past and make for the ladder. The item glow among the vases near the fist beast is the Court Sorcerer set. You may be able to sprint up and grab it and get out, but even if you haven’t yet disturbed it, the beast will wake when you get that close.
You’re probably going to want to kill a fist beast sometime, so here’s the deal. Fist beasts spit projectiles, which is why cheesing it from the little structure doesn’t work. They crawl slowly towards you, and then stand up to smash their fist face down on you. If they grab you in their hands, they suck out some of your souls, which is less than ideal. If you can shoot them in the fist face while the fingers are open it does wonders, but it’s also pretty hard. They have a ton of health. This one will go back to sleep after a bit if it can’t see you, so you can fire arrows at it through the broken wall, then go sit on the ladder until it nods off – rinse and repeat.
Don’t worry about it yet, as we have other places to be. Go back up onto the roof. There’s a fairly obvious path up some stairs here, but the one we want is a bit hidden: you need to run and jump over the gap between the wall and the rooftop to land in the open doorway. Follow the stairs up and use the Old Cell Key to unlock the door. Speak to Siegward of Catarina and exhaust his dialogue completely to secure his aid in an upcoming battle. He’ll give you a Titanite Slab. There’s also a Covetous Serpent Ring in the corner of the room, which is extremely handy.
Return to the roof and take the stairs. There’s a Jailer directly ahead when you arrive at the top, but it’s very difficult to see. Another Jailer appears from somewhere along the corridor here. It’s a dead end, but you’ll get the Jailer’s Key Ring at the end. Finally, we can get to that NPC back in Irithyll – more on that momentarily.
There’s one other area to visit on this side of Profaned Capital. Remember the swamp? There’s a long stretch of it running past the blue-roofed building you’ve been exploring. If you traverse to the end (go along the roof and drop down to save some toxic time) there’s another Crawler and a Shriving Stone. Continue on this way to enter a room with three fist beasts. If you kill even just one, you’ll get the Eleonora, a very fancy axe with a unique weapon art enabling it to restore health and cause bleeding.
Assuming you survive that bit (or decide not to bother), return to the room with the single sleeping fist beast. If it’s alive and you don’t want to have a go, just sprint past to the stairs on the opposite side. You can collect some Rubbish here, but more importantly, drop back down to the tower housing the bonfire.
Before we go on with Profaned Capital, let’s make use of this new key. Climb back into the bonfire tower via the external ladder (if the gargoyle warriors is still alive, it’s usually staring at the corridor you took to exit this place, so you can sneak behind it and climb the ladder in safety). Return to the bonfire and travel to Irithyll Dungeon.
Assuming you did all the optional treasure hunting and didn’t take the one-way shortcuts in Irithyll Dungeon, the easiest way to get to Karla, in our opinion, is to take the shortcut gate right by the bonfire. Take the lift down to the giant pit where we saw Siegward, hurry over to the short stairs (just run past the rats if you like) and climb the long ladder, then drop down to the giant’s ledge. Fight through the rats in the sewer tunnel, and then the two giant rats, to arrive in the area with seven Jailers patrolling. This side of the room is the easiest place to cheese them, but take them down however you fancy.
When it’s safe, proceed cautiously to the side of the room you haven’t explored yet, taking down the single Jailer lurking in a tunnel. Do not open the first cell door on this side; you may aggro the crucifixion victim inside, and there’s absolutely nothing of interest in the cell to make it worth the fight. Move on to the second cell and unlock the door. Speak to the NPC inside several times and be kind to her. This is Karla, an advanced magic vendor. She accepts dark pyromancy tomes and dark divine tomes, and after she arrives at Firelink Shrine you can buy her outfit from the Shrine Handmaid.
There’re two more doors we can with this key, and we may as well since we’re already here. Head back up to the bonfire and move toward the main crawl path; the third cell on your right can be unlocked for a Rusted Coin.
Proceed into the main body of the dungeon, battling all the usual suspects. The locked cell we’re after is on this side, at the far end, on the bottom level – pretty much below the shortcut window. Get there however you please; we think it’s easier to sprint along the top ledge and then ambush the Jailer in the bend of the stairs from above, rather than have to fight back past her the other way if you drop down. In the cell you’ll find the Prisoner Chief’s Ashes; return this item to the Shrine Handmaid.
That’s it! Head back to Firelink Shrine to turn in your umbral ashes and scroll and have a chat with your new friend if you like, and then we’ll get on with things.