If you are new to the Dark Souls series like I am, then when you first pick up the game you will soon realize that a survival strategy is necessary if you want to have any hope of getting to the end of this game….or even through the next 10 minutes. So we have concocted a special list for you of basic rules to help you stay alive in your quest to stay alive!

dark souls mountain

1.) Always be aware of your surroundings

One can NEVER be too cautious in this game and the difficulty of the game is sometimes less in the enemies themselves but more in the location of the enemy. You will quite often find yourself dying from an enemy that you failed to notice upon your first entry into an area who then proceeds to lob off half of your health due to your lack of perception. Just take your time going into new areas and make sure you look for enemies EVERYWHERE!


dark souls 3 combat

2.) When battling enemies KEEP SWINGING

Enemies can be staggered in this game (assuming they aren’t holding up a shield,) and that ability to stagger will save your tail more times than you will be able to count. The hardest part of getting ganked by a foe is the fact that they get the first hit and keep hitting and staggering you, keeping you from being able to fall back or heal. If you can get the first attack in and just keep hammering them, then you should be able to win most fights against foes. Side note: THIS DOES NOT WORK ON BOSSES but ill tell you what does help with that.




Rolling out of the way of attacks will save your life SOOOO MANY TIMES. and it works against most bosses too ( yeah I said most….good luck!) However if you aren’t one to run away then luckily you have another strategy you can use as well.

dark souls blocking


Yes you can in fact block attacks in Dark Souls III…to an extent…you will take a bit of residual damage from the blow but the amount of damage is substantially less than it would be had you not been holding up your shield. As an added bonus, the game allows you to attack while holding up your shield which means you NEVER HAVE TO STOP BLOCKING and you very well shouldn’t ever stop! You can run, jump and attack all while still having your shield up to stop an enemy’s blow so feel free to just keep that block button held down for the rest of the game. Fair warning: it doesn’t stop attacks from behind….which is why you should DODGE


dark souls 3 dragon

5.) Allow your enemies to do your dirty work for you

Occasionally you will walk into an open area and have a swarm of enemies standing around ready to murder an unsuspecting you. ALWAYS BE WARY OF THESE TIMES. More often than not you will walk up to the area an begin battling a foe and some giant creature will come up out of the ground and kill everything or in the case of the photo above, you will hear the sound of an awakening dragon who is just as cranky as you are when you wake up and feels the need to burn everything that exists around it to the ground. My advice to you is just be cautious of those open areas and listen up, because if you do, then you will notice that the game does give you about a 1.5 second warning of whats about to happen either via rubble falling to bits or the sound of the giant creature about to wreck faces.

dark souls 3 mountain 2

6.)  Farm the Cleric Chimes at the start of the game!

Early on in the game you will find yourself at the edge of a cliff fighting the skeleton wraith things who while frail can still kill you fairly easily if you aren’t paying  close attention to what they are doing. You can avoid most of them but if you do, then you will miss the opportunity to pick up a set of chimes that allow you to heal without using all of your precious Estus Flask up.  These chimes prove to be invaluable given that in the next area after this is a boss who can lob off half of your health in one blow. I advise you to farm at least one set of chimes before proceeding to the next area so that you can have multiple sources of healing yourself in the coming battle.


dark souls messages

7. Read the messages!

Throughout the game you will come across messages that are written on the ground in what looks like burning claw marks in front of you. READ THEM AND LISTEN TO THEM. THEY WILL HELP YOU AVOID DEATH.Like the warning about turning back before you run into a giant crystal lizard at the start of the game. Or you could try to be all cool and fight it and stuff but whatever.

So there you have it. Follow these rules and you should survive pretty well through your first Dark Souls adventure!

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