The Dark Sword is a great weapon. Here's how to get it.
Dark Souls 3: Dark Sword farming guide
The Dark Sword is one of the most popular weapons in Dark Souls 3 as of 1.03, because it is rad. The signature blade of the terrifying Darkwraith NPC invaders, it boasts a unique vertical slash heavy attack, and is the only sword with the Stomp weapon art.
Stomp, for those not yet au fait with advanced duelling techniques, is normally reserved for Greatswords and Ultra Greatswords. It allows players to assume a low stance which high poise (very hard to interrupt and stagger) and then unleash a spinning slash strong attack. This heavy-hitting ability, combined with the much speedier move set and lighter weight of a straight sword, makes the Dark Sword a fearsome blade indeed. It is perhaps the best one-handed sword in the game.
The Dark Sword requires 15 strength and 15 dexterity, and inflicts bleed. It has C grade strength scaling and D grade dexterity scaling, but when upgraded beyond +4 achieves A grade strength scaling with a Heavy Gem infusion. It can also achieve A grade faith scaling with a Blessed infusion, S grade intelligence scaling with Crystal infusion and S grade faith scaling with Lightning infusion.
We fully expect From Software to nerf the Dark Sword or to buff alternate weapons, as it currently makes the entire Greatsword and Ultra Greatsword class look ridiculous. Enjoy it while you can.
Update, July 2016: Yeah, FromSoft nerfed it.
How to get the Dark Sword
The Dark Sword only drops as rare loot from Darkwraiths. Although there are a couple of opportunities to fight these foes, by far the easiest place to farm them is near the Farron Perimeter bonfire. Travel cautiously towards the Abyss Watchers boss arena and two Darkwraiths will patrol in from your left. They will attack a group of Ghru (stayrs).
If you wait patiently until all the Ghru are dead, the Darkwraith will often take a great deal of damage. Pull them towards you from a distance to battle them one at a time.
Need more help? Check out our monstrous Dark Souls 3 guide and walkthrough.
You can reach this area very early in the game if you are willing and able. After defeating Vordt of the Boreal Valley, fight through Undead Settlement and take the lift down to the Outrider guarding the path to Road of Sacrifices. Make your way through Halfway Fortress and cross the swamp, killing or avoiding the NPCs at the ladder to the Farron Keep bonfire. Push through the swamp, lighting the three flames, and open the doors. You can spring through the next area, hugging the right wall, to reach the Farron Perimeter bonfire - but watch out for the Darkwraiths.
Increase item drop chance
For best results, you should increase your item drop chance before beginning to farm. Some ways to do that include:
- Equip the Golden Covetous Serpent Ring, found in Siegward's cell in Profaned Capital.
- Use a Rusted Coin or Rusted Gold Coin. These can be farmed from the Jailer Handmaids near the Yhorm the Giant boss arena.
- Reach 15 or more hollowing and equip a Hollow infused weapon - or two if possible, and preferably upgraded to +10.
- If you can spare the attribute points, respec yourself with a higher Luck stat at Rosaria's Bedchamber; you can only do this five times in each playthrough, and will need to pay a fee in Pale Tongues, so consider this a drastic last resort.