The next chapter of the Dark Souls franchise has arrived courtesy of the Ashes of Ariandel expansion, which introduces the new area known as the Painted World of Ariandel into the world of Dark Souls 3. Designed for higher-level players, this DLC is built to integrate into the game’s main narrative while bringing horrible new souls for you to slash your way through. But to do that, you’ll have to discover it first.
Like previous pieces of downloadable content in the Dark Souls franchise, Ashes of Ariandel doesn’t give you much direction regarding the location of the new area. You’re expected, like always, to find the key to opening it on your own and dive into the treacherous new area without any direction — but we’re here to tell you that you can access it from one of the first bonfires in the Cathedral of the Deep.
To reach the Cleansing Church bonfire where the new NPC is located, you’ll have to navigate your way through the starting area of the game and the High Wall of Lothric. From there, you’ll head into the Undead Settlement and down to the Road of Sacrifices. Instead of heading towards Farron Keep, however, make sure to loop around towards the ruins and kill the Crystal Sage to gain access to the Cathedral of the Deep.
Proceed up the path behind the boss and clear out the passageway, then move across a small stone bridge into the Cathedral of the Deep area. Here, you’ll fight your way through hollows and undead dogs until you reach a small cathedral. Open the doors and go inside, where you will find the Cleansing Church bonfire and a new NPC kneeling next to it who will get you into the Painted World of Ariandel.
If you’ve already cleared the area and unlocked the Cleansing Church bonfire, you can just travel to it with the DLC installed and speak with the NPC to begin your journey into the new area.
Photos via Nicholas Bashore, Bandi Namco