Dark Souls 3 may seem like a straightforward game, but it is anything but. Like all Dark Souls games, you can get through the entire game without visiting certain areas, as the game doesn't promote or even acknowledge its various hidden areas. If you played the game without a guide, then you undoubtedly missed a few interesting areas, most of which are well worth exploring. They contain interesting pieces of loot, intriguing lore, and even gorgeous vistas that you have to see to believe. Luckily, we're here to help.
These are ten hidden areas you didn't know existed in Dark Souls 3.
10 Undead Settlement Elevator
About halfway between the middle and top levels of the elevator in the Undead Settlement (where the spear-hurling giant resides), there exists a secret area. If you walk off correctly, you will enter a secret level and meet Siegward, who is enjoying a drink on a ledge. You will also see a massive area with a central fire and a wandering demon who pounces around looking for trouble. If you enter the area with the demon, you and Siegward will team up to destroy the enemy. You will also find the Chloranthy Ring and the Mirrah Set in this area, making it well worth your time.
9 Smouldering Lake
This is exactly what we're talking about when we say that Dark Souls 3 contains massive hidden areas. To get to the Smouldering Lake, you have to cut away the rickety wooden bridge in the Catacombs of Carthus. Once that is done, simply descend the bridge (now more a ladder) and enter the secret area. And may we say, this is one of the most stunning vistas in the entire game. The area is absolutely massive, the ground is made of lava, there are enormous...tree-things throughout the area, and the air is littered with floating embers. It's absolutely gorgeous. Oh, and there is tons of loot, a worm, giant crabs, a crossbow, and a boss called the Old Demon King. So yes, it is well worth exploring.
8 Firelink Shrine Rooftop
Throughout the game, the calming Firelink Shrine serves as your hub. It is here you level up, upgrade your character, and purchase necessary items for your quest. But what some people may not know is that you can access the roof of the Firelink Shrine. To do so, you must purchase the Tower Key from the Shrine Handmaid for 20,000 souls, which grants access to the Bell Tower. This is an interesting area to explore, and it contains the NPC Pickle Pee, Pump-A-Rum Crow, who you can utilize to trade various items. It's certainly not as complex as the Smouldering Lake, but it's worth a visit all the same.
7 The Aldrich Faithful Basement
Those looking for easy access through Irithyll would do well to avoid this basement. This area can be access by traveling through the valley of giants from the Pontiff Sulyvahn bonfire. After reaching the door at the far end, you can strike an illusory wall to reveal a secret area. After descending the ladder, you will find yourself in a wet basement surrounded by two Sulyvahn's Beasts, and let us tell you, that fight is not for the faint of heart. After defeating them you can visit Archdeacon McDonnell, who is chillin' out in the northwest corner. He will gift you Aldrich Faithful, allowing you to join the covenant.
6 Rosaria, Mother Of Rebirth
We're sure that the more exploratory amongst you have found Rosaria, Mother of Rebirth, but those who stormed through the Cathedral of the Deep almost certainly missed her. To find her, you need to access the elevator in the Cleansing Chapel and make your way through the area to access the roof arches of the Cathedral. You then need to make your way to the opposite side, jump down to a stone platform, and then jump down again to the area below. After that, you will eventually come across Rosaria, who allows you to change your physical appearance and re-allocate stats. She definitely comes in handy.
5 Archdragon Peak
It's amazing that Dark Souls 3 hides an area as stellar ans massive as Archdragon Peak. To reach this secret area, you need to get the Path of the Dragon gesture from the Consumed King's Garden. After that, you need to reach the meditation area in Irithyll Dungeon, the same area where you found the Dragon Stone Torso. After finding this location, you simply need to perform the Path of the Dragon gesture while aiming towards the mountains in the distance. After that, you will be transported to the mysterious, beautiful, and ridiculously challenging Archdragon Peak.
4 Untended Graves
The Untended Graves is another beautiful area that you absolutely need to experience. To access it, you need to find the illusory wall behind the chest in Oceiros's boss room. The Untended Graves is a dark and foreboding area that serves as an exact replica of the Cemetery of Ash. Here, you will find and fight Champion Gundyr, a much tougher version of Iudex Gundyr. You will also find the original Firelink Shrine, which is shrouded in darkness and silence. It's actually quite eerie! But also very cool. In this area you will find various key items, including the Eyes of the Firekeeper, the Blacksmith Hammer, and the Coiled Sword Fragment.
3 Consumed King's Garden
While we're talking about Oceiros, we may as well mention the Consumed King's Garden. To reach the Consumed King's Garden, you need to turn left after ascending the ladder in the cathedral of the High Wall of Lothric. This is a very hard area, complete with a massive, toxic swamp and Cathedral Knights. Making your way through the toxic swamp will eventually lead you to Oceiros, the Consumed King, who must be defeated to access Archdragon Peak. Also found scattered throughout the area is the Ring of Sacrifice, the Shadow Set, the Dragonscale Ring, and the Magic Stoneplate Ring.
2 Old Wolf Of Farron
The Old Wolf of Farron is an NPC and the covenant leader of the Watchdogs of Farron. If you pray to the sleeping Old Wolf of Farron, you will be granted the Watchdogs of Farron medallion, which allows you to join its covenant. According to the item description, "Summoning takes place automatically while this is equipped," and doing so allows you to be auto-summoned to defeat various bosses, including the Abyss Watchers and Crystal Sage. To get to the Old Wolf of Farron, you simply need to locate the slug-guarded ladder in Farron Keep, near the Keep Ruins bonfire. After ascending the ladder, you will find yourself at the Old Wolf of Farron bonfire.
1 Stray Demon Hidden Area
Located near the Old Wolf of Farron is the Stray Demon, a particularly challenging miniboss that grants you a boss soul (despite not being an official boss). What some people may not know is that there is a hidden area near the Stray Demon. While walking back to the bonfire you will see a broken piece of the wall. Simply go through this hole and make your way across the path to locate the hidden area. While here, you will find Crystal Lizards, the Dragon Crest Shield, a Heavy Gem, and the Lightning Spear, a miracle that allows you to conjure and throw a lightning spear at your enemies. Those doing a Faith run owe it to themselves to check this area out. You won't regret it.