This page contains different methods of efficiently obtaining standard souls to purchase items, upgrade equipment and level your character.
Rating system to be created by someone else. Information posted might have guidelines. Please modify posts to contain accurate in-game information.
Tomb of the Giants Second Bonfire Giant Skeleton and Skeleton Beast
10,000+ souls every minute, best I have achieved is 672,000 in 60 minutes.
Recommended SL: 40+
Firestorm is recommended for optimization, also possible with Greater Fireball. Go from Tomb of the Giants second bonfire up the spiral ledge. There is 1 Giant Skeleton and 1 Crawling Giant Skeleton that give 3,600 souls combined when wearing Symbol of Avarice and Covetous Silver Serpent Ring. If you run along the wall then cut in right between them you should be able to cast firestorm on the both Skeletons killing them with that one cast, this takes some practice to perfect. Alternatively using any other way to kill them quickly will still net good results, though possibly not as optimal. Rinse and repeat by running to and from these two skeletons and the bonfire ad infinitum, or until you get bored. This farming method is very effective because the proximity and use of the bonfire not only removes most of the danger of farming, but also negates the adverse effects Helm of Avarice allowing you to get up to 44% more farm per kill. -video explanation here-
Firelink Shrine's Graveyard Giant Skeleton
1000 souls in less than 1:00
Recommended SL: 5+
Drake Sword and Fireball will help with this method. Go from Firelink Shrine to the graveyard. There are 2 Giant Skeleton that give 500 souls each and also some weaker skeletons. Kill the small ones,then cast some fireball on the big Skeletons to kill them easily. If it is your first time here you can also find a useful item.
Clan of Forest Protectors (Darkroot Garden Humans)
7000 souls in less than 1:30.
21000 in NG+.
Recommended SL: 30+
Careful farming of the NPCs past the Crest-locked gate in Darkroot Garden is quite good. In the Black Forest there are 4 npc's. A mage, a thief who is almost invisible, a cleric and an axe warrior. From the bonfire head down the stairs to the area they are in. Run right out into the forest on the left to come upon the mage with a round shield. He fires Soul Arrows.You can use the trees as cover from the Mage's spells. The next enemy might be the thief. Although hard to see, you can hear him/her running at you. Enemy 3 is a mace and shield fellow, looks like a cleric almost. The last enemy is an armored axe and shield enemy who could kick your ass with little effort. With the Onion Knight armor and a 2 handed super fat axe, the enemies stagger from your hits and go down fairly quickly. Mage=2000 souls, Thief=2000 souls, Cleric-type=2000 souls, Axe Soldier=1000 souls. Run to the bonfire up the stairs and repeat. Coaxing visible enemies with arrows seems a lot safer than tanking with low melee prowess. Information relayed from a video on Youtube.
Clan of Forest Protectors Alternative
7000 Souls in approximately 2-3 minutes.
Recommended SL: 30+
Unequip all armor and heavy weapons. When approaching the NPCs in the forest, run straight at the Sorcerer NPC. He will cast Soul Arrow, but his aim is slow and it should go over your shoulder or hit a tree. Run directly to his left and keep going. As you approach the cliff face, the Priest on the right will notice you and begin to approach. Ignore him and continue straight until the Warrior with the Axe sitting on the top of the Cliff stands to pursue you. Immediately turn right and head back into the woods. Keep the glowing flower on your left, and run straight towards the stairs again. You have now gone around the semi-invisible Thief, and he should follow as well. He is very fast, so unequipping everything for maximum speed is best. As you approach the stairs, run to the right of them and push your character into the corner between the base of the stairs and the ledge of the cliff. As the enemies approach, their AI pathing will lead them up the stairs, and then over the side to get you. They should then glance off your head (no damage) and fall to their doom. Keep your shield up, and face the cliff. If they do land, one blocked swing will force them over. Use the camera to watch for the approaching NPCs. If they get stuck on trees and turn away, leave the corner and run out and circle them again to get their attention before returning. They will always exit the forest area well away from the cliff, thus forcing them to take the stairs as they approach and fall when they reach you.This nets 7000 souls with almost zero risk. Even if you fail, your bloodstain is always within sprinting distance.
Alternately, instead of running back to the stairs, you can keep running along the cliff (towards the direction you'd be coming from if you came from Darkroot Basin). If you follow the cliff to your left, you should eventually be able to tell where there's solid ground under the ledge since you'll start seeing trees again. Drop down to the right of the leftmost tree and walk left around it and you'll end up in a small crevice between the cliff wall and oblivion. Just like with the stairs spot, the chasing NPCs will go flying right off into the void. This is slightly faster but the walk back to the bonfire is longer, so it's better if you have access to Homeward. If you don't have Homeward and you are confident, you can jump off the cliff and pick up your blood stain each time you head out.
There are three additional NPCs in that area, a knight (3000 Souls), a Bandit (5000 Souls) and an archer (5000 Souls + Black Bow of Pharis + Pharis' Hat), all cloaked, that won't respawn.
My game has the knight respawning (both the knight and the bandit were respawning before 1.03, but after killing them after the patch, they do not respawn, at least in my game…might be a bug…needs confirmation <—- Started my first playthrough on 1.03, KNight respawned two times, but after that was never to be seen again). Standard knight, heavy equip burden, use a 2 handed sword and shield. Switches between both styles. Can use sword effectively. Does not heal. With a decent shield, block his 2 handed attacks and roll away. He will then switch to sword and shield style. He should stagger with his attack and leave him open to one strike. His 2 handed vertical attack downwards has a vertical follow up. Be careful.
Undead Asylum Torch Hollows
600-900 souls in 1:30.
When you return to Undead Asylum, the zombies (torch and sword) grant 100 souls on their deaths. Travel to the bonfire in the clearing before the area where you fought the Asylum Demon. From there, head back in and kill the sword zombies to your left and right. Run to the other end of the room and strike the right wall before the door. This will pull one torch zombie to you, while also attracting a second. If you are lucky, it will also pull the zombies above you to ground level. After killing them off head out and kill the last 2 torch zombies. Run back to the bonfire and repeat.
3000 souls in 3 minutes.
This method is done in the Depths after you've unlocked the shortcut back to the bonfire. It involves killing the curse frogs, so if you can't one shot them or don't feel comfortable killing them, try something else. From the bonfire, go down the stairs, down the ladder and more stairs to the hallway where the merchant sits. Go kill the 3 large rats, then continue around the corner where the frogs are. The first 2 are solo, then there are 2 frogs together to the left. Continuing on, there is one frog still on the upper level that will patrol towards you. After that, to the right a frog will notice you, but will get hung up on another frog when trying to path to you. You can take these out with a fireball, or drop down and kill them from behind. The other three frogs can then be killed from behind without them attacking. Each frog drops 241 souls, for 2,410 souls for the frogs, plus ~600 from the rats you killed. If you want to farm humanity and/or shards, kill the slimes near the bonfire, and before you head down the ladder, go to the next room where 5 rats are gathered in a corner.
Undead Burg Bridge Dragon Fire
555 souls every 3o Seconds.
Recommended SL: Any
At the first bonfire in Undead Burg, after the ladder has been lowered, climb the ladder and head up the stairs to the top of the bridge. Take one step into the center of the bridge and run back down the stairs to safety. The Hellkite Dragon should incinerate the 5 enemies on the bridge, earning you 555 souls. Jump back down to the bonfire, rest and repeat. Useful early in the game.
Note: In NG+ with the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring equipped will give you 3314 souls. -video explanation here-
Tomb of the Giants Skeleton Baby Slaughter
4000 souls every minute
Recommended SL: 50+
Directly before the fog gate that leads to Gravelord Nito there are a few pinwheel servants that give you a few souls, but that's not the enemy you will be farming. In the watery area below most of the pinwheel servants, there are skeleton babies that spawn in packs of 5-10. Each baby gives you 121 souls (145 each with the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring) and they respawn about 1-2 seconds after you have killed them. I suggest farming them around a ramp, because only 1 or 2 of them follow you up the ramp and you'll have time to heal if you get into some trouble). The babies die in 1 hit (They have about 40-50 health each). I personally suggest that you use a weapon with a long reach (such as a spear) because the babies still do a bit of damage, but once you get the hang of it, you won't be hit very often. If you use the Evil Eye ring, you will more than likely out heal their damage, unless you let yourself get hit a lot. The main benefit of this strategy is that you don't have to run back and forth to a bonfire, you can continue farming these babies until the end of time. As an added benefit, the babies also have a chance of dropping humanity.
Souls gained 12600 every 4 minutes (first playthrough(15120with CSSR))
Recommended SL 50+
In Anor Londo there are 12 silver knights situated in the palace area. When you first get in the palace there is a bonfire on your left through the door. Start here. Exit that room, and go to room across, 1st silver knight (spear), kill 2nd silver knight (sword) at bottom of stairs, past him go through the door to your right for the 3rd and 4th silver knight (spears), go back and run up the stairs, go through left door for 5th silver knight (spear), go back past the stairs and kill 6th (archer), through the door on the right 7th, 8th and 9th (sword wielders) (personally i lure them out one at a time), up the strairs to the top (outside) for 10th and 11th (sword and archer), down the stairs to the right of the stairs where you came up for the12th (sword). Exit that room at the far end and down the stairs to return to the bonfire.
This does seem like more trouble than its worth, but if you take the time to master parrying, you can kill them in one riposte using a lightning spear (mimic drop, Sen's Fortress) at +3, hence the 4 minutes.
*With the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring, you can easily get ~12k in just a few minutes. With an upgraded Pyromancy Flame and Combustion you could kill everything in 2-3 hits, making it fast and easy. Definitely the best way to farm before end game. There are also some good rare drops like the Silver Knight Shield which at the very least is another 100 souls from Kingseeker Frampt
Also, you can kill the 2 giants and silver knight archer in the hall before Smough and Ornstein, as well as the 2 guarding the doorway to the courtyard were all the gargoyles are. This is especially easy to do with the Hawk ring and a decent bow. These 5 enemies will give 10300 souls, 12360 with the CSSR. A full run through this area will give 27480 souls with the CSSR.
Anor Londo Silver Knights (Circular Path)
This is assuming that all of the doors in the living quarters of Anor Londo Cathedral have been opened.
- Starting at the bonfire where Solaire of Astora is sitting next to, leave the room and go around the large, central, dual, spiral staircase and kill the sword knight (ignore the knight in the room across from the bonfire, he will wait until you return.).
- Stand in the right doorway to bait the spear knight and kill him in the hallway (leave the other knight in that room).
- Go up the central, spiral staircase and kill the spear knight in the left room overlooking the small chapel.
- Go around the central staircase and, whilst keeping to the left so not to draw other agression, kill the bow knight.
- Whilst you are up the end of the hall with the bow knight's corse at your feet, look on the right wall. Stab your weapon about three-quarters (from the balcony end to the stairs) in-between the first and second pillar to the sword knight (he can do the same to you so be ready with a block). Move up towards the two doors (but not between them) to draw the knight you have just hit up to you to kill.
- Stand in the right doorway and move slowly forward until the visible sword knight is baited and comes out into the hall for you to dispose of.
- Do the same as above except for the sword knight that is inline with the open door (be careful).
- Enter the room on the left of the hallway and kill the sword knight in the next room next to the smaller, spiral staircase.
- Ascend the staircase and kill the sword knight standing in the archway of the adjacent small, spiral staircase (careful not to be spotted by the bow knight).
- Kill the bow knight and decend the large, spiral staircase.
- If you want to include the royal knights in this trip for the sake of titanite chunk farming than go straight ahead, otherwise, go through the right door, down the stairs and kill the spear knight.
- Run around the cathedral and kill the bow knight.
- Go down the stairs and proceed up the back stairs. The far royal sentinal will chase you, attack and, if unprovoked, will walk backward to its starting position; you will be able to kill them one at a time now.
- Kill the first one then kill the second and then run back up the stairs to the living quarters (do not forget your Covetous Gold Serpent Ring when killing them).
- Exit the room with the spear knight you have just killed. Run around the central staircase and kill the spear knight in the left room.
- Reset at the bonfire in the adjacent room.
Requirements: Great Chaos Fireball, Quelaag defeated
Souls gained: up to 31 souls/second
After defeating the Chaos Witch Quelaag and obtaining the Great Chaos Fireball from Eingyi, proceed to the Demon Ruins and stop at the first bonfire surrounded by several Egg-bearers. What you want to do now is use your Great Chaos Fireballs on the egg-bearers. The bearers don't give out any souls but the larva that hatch after they die give out 18 souls per larva. By using the great fireball the initial blast will kill the bearers and the flames the ball leaves on the ground will kill off the larva. With the Dusk Crown Ring you get 6 casts of the great chaos fireball. I found the optimal number of killed bearers to be 7, making the total of larva killed 35, times 18 souls per larva makes it 630 souls per run. Since the bonfire is just a few steps away I managed to get 630 souls in about 20 seconds, making 31 souls per second.
Note: When the larva hatch some of them might bug out and jump in the air thus not getting killed by the fireball flame.
The Duke's Archives' Garden Crystal Golems
Souls: 11800 (with CSS Ring)
Time: 5-7 minutes
Place: Crystal Garden (forest area before the CRYSTAL CAVE)
There are 10 Blue Crystal Golems here, With Crystal Ring Shield +5 and Lightning Spear (weapon) +5 Just go and kill them all. Best to rest at the Bonfire in the DUkes Library Shortly before the fight with Seeth. There is also a crystal hollow at the bottom of the secret stair, so be sure to na him too. Good chance to drop Blue Titanite from the Golems, thats worth 3 green shards or 15 small shards with Frampt. Great and easy with the right equipment.
The Depths Bonfire
Souls: 700-1000 +humanity green and large titanite shard drops
Time for complete cycle: 2 minutes; from bonfire and back
Place: Depths at bonfire behind locked door
This method is basically the same method as the farming for green titanite method. The obvious benefit is that you get shard drops along with the soul farming. Basically go to the bonfire behind the locked door in the depths kill the 2 hollows and slimes in the hallway just outside. Rinse and repeat. Works better if you have a strong weapon or spell to dispatch the slimes quickly. Fire works well on the slimes. Have some loose humanity up if you want more drops. Works best before your kill the area boss as your humanity will slowly increase as well. Although it makes the run slightly longer you can also go down the stairs to the right as you leave the bonfire, and head around to the right path to the mob of passive rats and kill them all for 300 souls and occasional humanity drops.
The Depths Bonfire (alternate)
Souls: NG+ 19000-20000 depending on your overkill ability
Time: 5-10 minutes depending on how good you get at the route
Place: Depths at bonfire behind locked door
Advantage: Also gains Large Titanite Shard and Green Titanite Shard, and Humanity
Requires: Symbol of Avarice, Covetous Silver Serpent Ring, Power Within, Great Combustion, Ascended Pyromancy Flame +5, 10 soft Humanity, High Endurance (preferably 40)
Helps: Homeward - requires 18 FAI, Havel's Ring/Ring of Favor and Protection,Gold-Hemmed Black Set/Painting Guardian Robe +5, Quelaag's Furysword +5, second casting of Great Combustion, second casting of Power Within or Lingering Dragoncrest Ring, Grass Crest Shield
Preparation: Try to get under 25% burden using the gear listed above - and using the Symbol of Avarice. This is easiest with Havel's Ring, but then you need to be able to cast Power Within at least twice otherwise you won't maximize your souls.
- Don't cast Power Within yet. Head out the door, and kill the zombie with your weapon. Run straight ahead, and kill the zombie hiding in the door, also with weapon.
- Turn around and cast Power Mithin. Use Great Combustion to kill the 6 slimes. If you do it right you can save 1 or 2 castings of Great Combustion. With Power Within you will overkill every time.
- When you get to the bonfire, turn left and go to the end. Kill the 5 rats that are to the right at the door with your weapon.
- Turn around and head the other way in the same corridor. Block the rat that jumps out of the box and kill it.
- Turn left and kill the 4 rats down the stairs (one of them falls off the top usually).
- Make a U-turn and go through the door next to the stairs. Go all the way until the hallway turns right.
- This is the Channeler room. Fortunately he doesn't respawn. However, the three Large rats down the stairs require a little caution. You can use Great Combustion castings here if you have two of them attuned.
- Turn right and kill the rat by the door. Go through the door and immediately turn right and kill the rat before he runs away. Do *NOT* keep going straight and fall down the hole, unless you want to fight Basilisks.
- Just before the hole, there was a turn left. Go that way, and kill the rat in the hallway. Power within (if you are not using Lingering Dragoncrest) should run out after you get him.
- Turn right at the end of the hallway, you will be in the Giant Rat miniboss room (empty now).
- As you make the turn, hug the left wall, and slide down the ramp. Push to the left as you slide to make sure you don't fall into the hallway below.
- If you fell into the hallway, immediately turn left. As the hallway turns into the right, you will see 3 Large rats and 1 Regular rat. Kill them.
- If you didn't fall into the hallway, Great Combustion the slime in front of you, then turn left and kill the same 4 rats from above.
- Either way, head back into the room with the slime. As you run towards the second slime, stay on the left side of the pool and move quickly to make sure the third slime falls, but not on your head. Great Combustion these two slimes and kill the last two rats. One of them may run into the door on the way to the Gaping Dragon room.
- If you HAVE homeward, cast it now.
- If you do not, head back to where the first slime was in this room and run up the stairs to your left. Climb the ladder in front of you and go up the stairs that head to the right in front of you.
- Turn left, and you're back at the bonfire!
Souls: 10,000+ (NG+ 15000-16000)
Time: 45 - 60 seconds (Pyromancy + strong weapon); 4 - 6 minutes
Place: Painted world of Ariamis
Requirements: Firestorm (Fire Tempest or Chaos Firestorm work as well), armor with a lot of poise, a way of killing survivors + the three hollows before the door. (If you have the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring and/or Symbol of Avarice, equip it for more souls each time)
After the bonfire, run through the first door and quickly kill the three Skeletons so they don't follow you. Then sprint through the large oppening into the courtyard where the mob which looks like phalanx from Demon's Souls is. Depending on how much poise you have, you may want to move around to the back so that you have some time before they attack you. If you get interrupted, depending on how many survivors there are either recast or remove the survivors another way. Casting Iron Flesh is a good way to stop your casting from being interrupted. If you have a lot of Poise and can take a good melee hit or two if you're a second late, all you have to do is run straight towards the Phalanxes, and two feet past the chain on the ground, cast Chaos Storm. This can kill every one of them, but will likely leave three in the back. Flank and finish them. Using a the Symbol of Avarice & attaining overkill additional experience on this run will yield ~11,300 souls per 45 to 60 seconds. This can be further increased using the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring). This entire run can be done very quickly this way.
-Video explanation here-
This method can also be done with a Greatsword's running horizontal sweep attack if you lack the Pyromancy level or Firestorm spell (ex: Black Knight Sword or Greatsword of Artorias both work well at +3 and better in NG.) After you get the phalanx like mob to start moving towards you, two-hand your choice blade and charge the front and attack. The wide arc of the sweep attack can take out 3-6 of them in a single shot. The individual enemies don't have too much HP, so as long as they aren't facing you directly with their shield up, they'll more than likely die instantly. Just don't sit still. Circle to their back and keep the sword spinning. Retreat to behind the stone blocks if you need to heal from a cheap swing they might manage to get off.
Keeping you equipment weight under 50% and having something that will help stamina regeneration help keep this tactic running smoothly. Grass Crest Shield works well since you'll be two-handing the Greatsword for this tactic. I clocked this tactic at an average of 60-70 seconds.
Phalanx vs Wrath of the Gods:
Wrath of the Gods can take out the Phalanx Cluster in 2-3 casts. Run in (avoiding the first undead) and blast the group. The long range will hit most of them but you might have to run around to snag any stragglers. Casting Homeward after clearing the pack shaves 2-3 seconds off running back to the bonfire again (loading times permitting). 7000 Souls/~35 secs. Symbol of Avarice and Silver Serpent Ring buff this to 10k/~35secs. Overkills (~550-600+ dmg) will buff this further to a whopping 12,000 Souls every 35 seconds. This can also be done with grant´'s two-handed Strong attack.
Additionally you can use a slightly upgraded halberd to take down 4-6 in one swing. Equip a decent stability shield and run at them from the bonfire. Chop the zombie at the door and keep running till the phalanx engages you. Circle around then counter-clockwise till about halfway around. They should all be facing you at this point and just let the halberd R2 rip. Should take out 1/3 of them. Run in the same direction a bit more and you can get the rest with two more swings.
Phalanx vs White Dragon Breath
WDB can clear the cluster in 5-6 casts with a few left to mop up. The key is to cast WDB and then step behind one of the blocks before the cast starts, or you will be hit with enough spears to kill a standard mage. They drop spears and leather shields, so you may want to skip the mop up and just run back to the fire after hitting the biggest clump.
The best Painted World of Ariamis for higher levels.
Souls: NG+ (51,000+)
Time: 2 minutes (no joke, tested many times, took me a while to get it down easy though.)
My SL: 155
- Equip: Grass Crest Shield, Symbol of Avarice, Giant Armor +5, Ring of Favor and Protection, Covetous Silver Serpent Ring, Quelaag's Furysword +5, 10 soft Humanity, Ascended Pyromancy Flame +5, Power Within and Chaos Storm.
- With this set up, cast Power Within, then 2H your QLFS, then run and kill the three Undeads lurking before the phalanxes. Equip the Pyromancy Flame and Chaos Storm, run to the phalanx then to the left and completely to the other side. Cast chaos storm roughly a step away from the nearest phalanx, for roughly 1000 damage to each phalanx which is enough to achieve overkill. 2h QLFS to finish off any that were not killed, then run back to the bonfire. There man be an undead with a torch you must be wary of. During all of this, heal using Estus any time you are running below a full estus dose. Because Power within lasts 100 seconds and each run takes roughly 50 seconds, quickly rest at the bonfire and repeat for the full 51,000. Once you finish two runs, power within will run out and you'll be 50k richer! Rinse and repeat for masive souls in tiny bits of time.
- Now excuse me while I go do more runs!
- (Same net gain can be done at SL 120ish, but is not recommended to go much lower if you want the full 50k in two minutes. If you play your cards right, 40dex, 40str, 40vit, 14 attun and 40end should be minimum req. for this kind of farming.)
Painted World Alternative
(Souls, Souvenirs of Reprisal, large Titanite shard and humanity)
15,000 souls every 5 to 7 minutes depending on build and level
Recommended SL: 40+
-Video explanation here-
Painted World Alternate 2
Strength Level: 50
Souls: 7000 (first playthrough) + 1080 (Undead)
Time: less than 2 minutes
Place: Phalanx Statue
Equip the Dragon King Great Axe (2 handed wield) and from the bonfire run up the stairs, kill the Undead in the way (optional nets 360 souls each). Upon reaching them, run slightly to one side of the group and use the power attack, should take out 7-9 of them, follow with a 2nd power attack to finish group. If any survive, finish them with light attack. Rinse and repeat with trips to bonfire
You can also Equip the Ring of Fog which makes the fight a joke since they wont throw their spears, pyromancy recommended.
Souls: 9000 (10,800 souls w/ CSSR)
SL: 50+ or so.
Time for complete cycle: 7 minutes; from bonfire and back
Place: Anor Londo
Requirements: A great shield (such as eagle shield, shield of artorias, black iron, etc.), great and/or normal combustion, and great chaos fireball. Bellowing Dragoncrest and an upgraded flame makes this even easier.
At the Anor Londo bonfire w/ the firekeeper, go out, and go to either the right or left area with the giants wielding the halberds/shields. These guys shouldn't be too hard one versus one as they telegraph their attacks like no other. Draw one of the two away, block/evade its attacks, then smash them with some fire. I find combustion/great combustion to work the best because they're casted fairly quickly as opposed to the projectile spells, still kick ass damage wise, and are overall easier to use than trying to time the tossed spells. Using projectile flames leads to them often being blocked by their shield unless you strafe around them when they do a shield slam. After you take out the pair, stand in the doorway that leads outside to where the third giant of that vicinity is, and you should be able to hit, and kill, it with a great chaos fireball from the side. Rinse & repeat with the three giants on the other side.
Depending on your flame's level, and if you use the bellowing dragoncrest ring, this can take another minute or so. When I first did this w/ a +15 flame and bdr, I needed to use 3 normal combusts, 2 great combusts, or a great chaos fireball (afterburn included) to kill one. Once I used the bdr and ascended my flame to +5, I needed one less combust to kill them, and I could use a great fireball instead of just chaos because the afterburn was no longer needed.
ALTERNATIVE: The titanite catch pole works on these guys fairly well for people wanting to melee them. If upgraded to +5, it can kill a giant in three hits when two handed. Most other weapons of mine didn't seem to really do much to them in comparison to the catch pole, considering it's speed.
ALTERNATIVE 2: I used a Zweihander +9. If you two-hand it, either the light or heavy attacks should be enough to two-shot the sentinels at around SL45-50 with 30-34STR and 18DEX. Just walk right up to them, blocking with the Zwei until you're under their legs or slightly behind them and swing away. The first hit should stagger him, giving you an opening for the second swing. You may end up taking a couple of hits on the way so you might need an Estus or two since the Zwei isn't a shield (use a greatshield if you want, but one-handing the Zwei might not do it in two hits with the light attack anymore, but still should with heavy). Unless the Sentinel decides to do the shield bash, in which case you can run/roll right between his legs and smash him in the back. I was able to clear both sides this way in about four minutes round trip from the bonfire back to the bonfire.
(Zweihander +10 with one-handed can 2 hit kill if you can get them in the back with heavy attack (str:24, dex:20))
ALTERNATIVE 3: With a high enough intelligence, you can one-shot the sentinels with soul spear (Crown of Dusk or Bellowing Dragoncrest ring can get you enough power without maxing intelligence) or crystal soul spear. If you only have the one Soul Spear attunement, it's more effective to take out all three on one side and run back to the bonfire to recover the castings, rinse and repeat. Most effective if you have enough stamina to run all the way from bonfire to sentinels, one-shot all three on one side, then Homeward miracle back to bonfire to reset and repeat.
ALTERNATIVE 4: With either the Oolacile Catalyst, or the Oolacile Ivory Catalyst, and the Bellowing Dragoncrest Ring or Crown of Dusk, you can easily dispatch the Sentinels with Great Heavy Soul Arrow, followed quickly by Great Soul Arrow before they recover from the first arrow's stagger. Useful for sorcery builds below the 36 INT required to use Soul Spear. Just make sure you stand at the edge of lock-on range, and slightly to the left, so your Soul Arrows get around their impenetrable shields.
ALTERNATIVE 5: (38,880 souls in NG+ in only 1:30 when executed perfectly) Need: About 50 INT, multiple copies of Soul Spear (Normal or Crystal) for at least 12 castings, Logan's Catalyst, Covetous Silver Serpent Ring, Symbol of Avarice, Cloranthy Ring, Homeward, and any talisman. Strip your character of everything accept the mentioned items; the Symbol of Avarice is no threat as you will be back at your bonfire well before it can kill you. Start at the first Bonfire in Anor Londo (with the firekeeper), and choose the set of sentinels on the left or the right, it does not matter. Start with the left most sentinel, working your way to the right (their left sides are more exposed) kill all three sentinels. Two castings of soul spear will kill each one. Immediately run to the other side for the last three sentinels and repeat. Just after you cast the last Soul Spear, cast Homeward (be careful not to cast it too fast or the souls from the last sentinel will not be counted). This is faster than running back and acts as a rest at your bonfire, so you can turn around and start over as soon as the you stand up.
SL: 45+ or so.
Time: 1 minute 30 seconds
Place: Demon Ruins
Requirements: Any high stacked weapon
Leave the second bonfire (the one guarded by the Burrowing Rockworm) and head back up the stairs to the hallway of 5 Capra Demons. They are worth 800souls each and with my Lightning +4 they only take 3 hits each to be killed. After you have killed all 5 you can drop down back to the bonfire (instead of running back down the stairs) and rest, respawning the Capra Demons. Repeat.
Souls: 10300 in NG, 30900 in NG+, more than 45000 with the Symbol of Avarice and the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring
SL: High enough that you can kill the Royal Sentries in Anor Londo fast. Works really good for high-intelligence sorcery build
Time: 1 minute 30 seconds if everything goes exactly as it should, but more likely two minutes
Place: Anor Londo, Gwynevere's bonfire with the princess alive
Requirements: At least 700 HP to survive the fall to the bottom of the chamber. Homeward miracle. Whatever works for killing the sentries extremely fast. In NG+ with the Tin Crystallization Catalyst and 50 INT, I kill one with two soul spears.
This method brings about as many souls as the very first one and occurs in the same place but the Royal Sentries drop Titanite Chunk and the Silver Knight drops Dragonslayer Arrow. Besides, out of the five enemies, you can get three of them from behind.
For high INT builds, use Soul Spear, Crystal Soul Spear and Homing Crystal Soulmass with the Bellowing Dragoncrest Ring. If you don't have the Symbol of Avarice, wear the Crown of the Dark Sun to enhance your sorceries.
From the bonfire, turn back and fall down. Heal yourself and run to the first sentry. You should kill it from afar with soul spears without it turning back to you. Cast Homing Crystal Soulmass and go up the stairs to the right cautiously to kill the archer. He should be killed by the soulmass if it is strong enough and if he didn't raise his shield. The second sentry should go up the stairs. Kill it while its back is turned as it goes up. Then go to the front door and kill the two regular sentries from afar. If everything goes well, you can kill the first without aggroing the second. Cast homeward and repeat.
10,000 souls per minute w/ CSSR and symbol of avarice
Symbol of avarice
your strongest spell, (soul spear works well as you can kill the last 2-3 in 1 shot)
bellowing dragoncrest ring (optional)
tin crystallization catalyst (optional, works well if you have 2 strong spells to switch off on)
If you are strong enough to one shot the skeleton beasts w/ a soul spear, go to the 2nd bonfire in the tomb of giants. cast light and proceed to shoot the 5 skeleton enemies that are in the direction of the boss. You should be able to kill 2 or 3 of the last skeleton beasts in 1 soul spear shot with the right angle, meaning you can do a run w/ just the 4 soul spear shots. The enemies shouldnt attack you within range of your spells, so you can do this w/o risking being attacked at all. if you are strong enough to overkill them by 20% dmg or so the souls go up to 12k per run. run back to bonfire, and repeat. cast light should last for several runs.
The Duke's Archives' Prison Pisacas
Souls: 8000 for NG (11520 with CSSR and Symbol of Avarice)
Time: 1 minute 30 seconds exactly if done right
SL: 60+ (this could be less, the important thing is the ability to kill Pisaca quickly, preferably in one shot).
Place: The Duke's Archives - Prison Area
Other Benefits: Humanity
Requirements: the ability to kill Pisaca in one shot.
Recommended: Symbol of Avarice, Covetous Silver Serpent Ring. An equipment load less than 50% or even 25%. Homeward Miracle, or Homeward Bone.
- Warp to The Duke's Archives then go up the stairs to the upper left to get back to the prison area.
- Rest at the Bonfire in The Duke's Archives - Prison Area.
- Run down the spiral staircase (optional: kill the two Serpents) to the room with all the Pisaca.
- (Optional) Drink an Estus Flask to top you off.
- Run straight in the room, and kill the Pisaca as quickly as you can. Grab any dropped Humanity.
- Use Homeward Miracle, or Homeward Bone (will reduce each run by 500 souls) to get back to the bonfire. Running back will almost double the time, and is not recommended.
- The Pisaca have a VERY short aggro range. For example, the ones at the back of the room will not aggro while you are killing the ones in front. This means you can run in, kill the two on the right in one hit, and you will likely only aggro the one in the middle, and 1 more from either or both sides.
- Their attacks generally have a pretty short range as well, so simply back away a bit from any you do aggro, and then smack them when the opportunity presents itself.
- You only really need to watch for their "grab" move which can take a big chunk of your hp.
- If you have a reasonably fast weapon you can simply strike them while they are setting up for any of their attacks.
- Back away anytime you get in trouble and drink an Estus Flask.
- If you can overkill the Pisaca with the CSSR and SoA they drop 1382 souls, so that's an extra 230 souls each, for a possible 2300 extra souls per run.
- Pisaca drop Humanity at a pretty decent rate. Use 10 Humanity to increase your Item Discovery to 410, and they will drop even more Humanity.
- If you're using a mage build, In NG, with about 34 [Intelligence, using only the Sorcerer's Catalyst, a Great Heavy Soul Arrow can one-shot a Pisaca.
The Duke's Archives' Prison Pisacas - Safer Gramophone Alternative
Souls: 8000 + 1600 (undead) + 2000 (serpents)
Time: 2-3 minutes
This is like the one above with a few changes:
- Keep the gramophone on. This keeps the Pisacas moving up the staircase and splits them apart. You'll end up with batches of them in 2-3 at a time (with a cluster of 4 at the bottom). This makes the runs safer, breaks up the monotony of the journey down, and reduces the risk of Serpents ganking you from behind while you are on the ground floor.
- Kill the other undead in the cells while you are going down. They are going to bother you, anyway. Be careful when you end up with both Pisacas and undead in the same place. In many cases, you can kill them inside their cell (through the bars).
- Kill the two Serpents going towards the ladder. You have to be quick about it, else they will just run past you. (Don't bother if you miss them. Sometimes they end up falling off, anyway.)
- With luck, you may end up with two Serpents on the ground floor, stuck trying to go up the ladder at the same time. End their suffering.
- DO NOT use a Homeward Miracle/Bone, as this resets the gramophone back off. Using it takes about 5s plus 15-20s of loading, anyway, and you should be able to run back up in less than 30 seconds. So it doesn't add much to the overall time.
Addendum for the Reckless - Farming with the Symbol of Avarice
Souls: depends on the place you farm but up to 44% more souls.
SL: any, but in places you feel relatively safe (often in NG+, unfortunately)
Time: varies, but fast enough that you don't die because of the item
Requirements: Symbol of Avarice, Covetous Silver Serpent Ring, as many Estus Flask as you can muster or a way to get life back easily. Several Ring of Sacrifice can save you a lot of frustration.
The Symbol of Avarice is a double-edged item. It offers the same boost in item drop as the Covetous Gold Serpent Ring but doesn't stack with it (although it stacks with Humanity), so wearing the ring is useless. It also offers a +20% boost for souls, which stacks with the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring to give you a +44% increase in souls drop. You can either wear the Symbol of Avarice only, leaving your two ring slots free and still giving you the same effect as wearing the two serpent rings, or you can wear it with the Covetous Silver Serpent Ring for an added increase of your soul drop while still having one free ring slot.
There are two major downsides to this setup, however. First, the Symbol of Avarice weights 10, which will slow you down if you have a fast build. Second, it has a 5 PV/second life drain, making it very dangerous to actually use. The Sanctus shield gives a 1 PV/second life boost, which doesn't offset the drain fully, so be prepared to drink a lot of Estus Flask. If you are farming on many enemies, the Ring of the Evil Eye is a good way to keep yourself healthy (especially if you are farming against the Skeleton Babies). If you have the means to use it, the Server is another alternative.
This equipment is especially worthy if you are farming your souls on enemies that drop other items you farm (Crystal golems, Skeleton babies). It also works quite well in coop if you fight a boss as a white phantom that you know you can kill easily (such as Chaos Witch Quelaag for sorcerers or Crossbreed Priscilla for pyromancers), given that you don't lose any souls if you die, but keep in mind that you can't use Estus Flasks as a white phantom so wear it only during the boss fight or you won't even go that far.
If you feel REALLY skilled (or ballsy), you can try to parry and riposte some enemies for additional souls (EXTREMELY DANGEROUS!), or fight your bosses with it (also really dangerous unless you have insane skills against specific bosses, for example sorceries with Flash Sweat and the Bellowing Dragoncrest Ring works well against Quelaag).
Another method for bosses, reorder the Covetous Gold Serpent Ring so it is next to your normal ring and reorder your Symbol of Avarice so it is next to your normal helmet. Once a boss is defeated you can easily switch your helmet and ring to those soul increasing items in time to get the 44% increase in souls.
All in all, this method can be adapted anywhere you feel confident enough but keep in mind that it can be dangerous and frustrating. You'll probably die several times while no enemies are present because the Symbol of Avarice drained the last of your life while you were chugging an Estus Flask. Don't say I didn't warn you!
Massive Farming with an Increasing Rate of Return
This requires a friend that can be summoned repeatedly and the Red Sign Soapstone. The players will be arbitrarily labeled Player One and Player Two. Player One should first gather a somewhat large number of souls to start with.
- Player One lays down a red soul sign is summoned by Player Two.
- Player Two kills Player One, gaining souls. Player One should then retrieve his own souls once back in his own world.
- Now Player Two lays down his red soul sign. The process alternates ad infinitum with an increasing rate of return.
*Note: If the summoned player kills the summoning player, the summoning player will lose a humanity, and that would be inefficient.
*Note: Remember that the area boss in each player's world must be alive to see each other's sign.
*Note: This method is best performed next to a bonfire. Many bonfires are located in areas where no summoning or invading may occur. Some possible locations for this method are the bonfires at Oolacile Township and Darkmoon Tomb, the latter of which might be less prone to interruptions.
Obsidian Greatsword 2h Strong Attack VS Phalanx
About 9000 souls every 4 minutes with CSSR and Symbol of Avarice
In the Painted World of Ariamis, from the first bonfire, run through the shortcut to the Phalanx enemies. Stand closely in front of the mob, holding up your shield (Must have good stability/Balder Shield +10 works well). Let the enemies disperse enough so that you can run into the center of the Phalanx circle. (You may have to run around a little. You can also use the big stone blocks to protect you while the enemies disperse). Use the Obsidian Greatsword's 2h strong attack. This will annihilate a large number of them. Take out the remaining stragglers with your preferred methods. Pyromancy works well. Run back to bonfire and repair the Obsidian Greatsword. Rinse and repeat.
*Note: This requires an upgraded shield with good stability, and the Obsidian Greatsword, which is only obtainable by cutting off Kalameet's tail in the DLC.
*Note: This was done using an Obsidian Greatsword +4.
Kingseeker Frampt Farming (Patched)
If Frampt is present at Firelink Shrine, and you have the Undead Burg tunnel unlocked, you can run to the Undead Merchant (female), purchase 99 Prism Stone for 990 souls, run back to Frampt and he will give you 100 souls for each. This can be done in just over 1:30 and will get you 8910 souls profit each time. This can be repeated an unlimited amount of times.
Darkwraith and Ghost
Location: New Londo Ruins Ghost and Darkwraith - Bonfire; Firelink Shrine
Souls; 15 600 (no overkill, no CSSR)
Time: 3-7 minutes(depend on your level)
Need the Lordvessel, to be able to drain the water level of New Londo Ruins after getting the key from Ingward.
Darkwraith HP: 528 / Souls: 1200
Ghost HP: 230 / Souls: 200
Items needed; Slumbering Dragoncrest Ring, Covetous Gold Serpent Ring or Covetous Silver Serpent Ring (depending if you're going for the drop or the soul), Any kind of long Sword or high damage spell. Grass Crest Shield(if necessary arise), Light Armor of your choice, 10 Humanities can be useful.
First of all, you need a few Transient Curse or a Cursed weapon, and a lot of Homeward Bone or the Homeward miracle.
Then you go down the elevator that lead to the New Londo Ruins, and make your way to the first elevator which lead you down to the Ruin. On the second wooden bridge, use a Transient Curse(Important not to do it before, because it might run out before you've finish your trip), and kill the first two ghost after the bridge, the two other up the first stair, then you enter the first building, kill the ghost in front of the elevator. It is not necessary to kill all the ghost of this building, but if you do, you'll be sure to drop more Transient Curse than you use, and you gain a little more xp.
Once you're down the elevator, you absolutely need the Slumbering Dragoncrest Ring, because if you don't have it, you'll end up with two or three Darkwraith to fight at the same time, which is really dangerous. For the Darkwraith them-self, there's only one really dangerous attack pattern(note that each of their attack hurt a lot, but they are kinda easy to dodge, and only one or two swing at the time), when he use his sword with one hand, and start a combo of 2 to 4 hit. If you get hit by the first swing, and don't have enough poise, you'll be stunt until the third or fourth swing, and probably end up dying. But if you keep your distance, they are pretty easy to kill one on one.
There's is two Darkwraith in the wooden construction(one to the left and one to the right), right after the elevator, and one to the other side of the room. If you have the SDR equip i recommend to backstab him, along with the two Darkwraith on the way to the door that lead to the Drake Valley. After killing those 5, you go back through the basement with the first Darkwraith, and face the sixth one in the low level water pool. Right after the pool, there's an illusionary wall in front of you, and another Darkwraith on the other side. You need to lure him toward you since there's only a little ledge in-between you and him. After that, you go up the stair to the second building, and only step on the first slab of the porch and wait in the stair. A few second later the eight Darkwraith will show up, and you won't need to face the other one in the room, the ninth one. There's also a ghost that will show up for the first Darkwraith, and another for the Second. Once you've make your way through the building, turn right and there's the tenth one in the corner behind the building. After killing this one, you go to the left side of the door, drop down the edge to the left of the bridge that lead to the Abyss, there is the last Darkwraith, that you can also backstab. Now your trip is done, and you can teleport back to the Firelink Shrine Bonfire.
*Note: The trip itself give a good amount of Souls, but also a ton of Titanite Chunk, it is also a very good way of Farming Titanite Slab. If you have encountered Frampt You can break the Titanite Chunk for Large Titanite Shard and then for simple Titanite Shard. You either keep them, or sell them to Frampt, but if you break the Chunk down to simple Shard you gain a fairly amount of soul.
13 Chunk = 39 Large Titanite Shard
39 Large Shard = 195 Shard
195 Shard = 9750 soul
It's almost impossible not to drop at least one Chunk per trip, and sometime you get 5 or 6 Chunk, and since 1 Chunk broken down to Shard give 750 soul, it is a nice bonus to gain for your effort. Or you can also upgrade your equipment.