After defeating Dragonslayer Armour, proceed past the bridge into the next area where you will find a staircase leading deeper into the keep. First, go right to find a small path leading to a Titanite Chunk. Just ahead of you is the Grand Archives bonfire.
To your right is a door leading to a lift that doesn’t work at the moment. Move forward to find a corpse holding the Grand Archives Key and the Gotthard Twinswords.
Open the door to the Grand Archives and you’ll find yourself confronting the Crystal Sage – or another enemy exactly like the Crystal Sage. This enemy will use the same skills as the boss fight from earlier in the game, except you aren’t in a courtyard anymore, but in a maze of books and shelves. As you approach him, he will teleport to a higher level while continuing to shoot spells at you.
After he’s gone, head right up the stairs to find a Thrall who will run away in hopes to lure you into an ambush by another Thrall. Kill them and loot the Titanite Chunk on the balcony. Now take either stairs up to find a Crystal Lizard who will hop down onto a ledge. Don’t worry, that’s the only way to go, so follow him and take him down to receive a Crystal Gem and Twinkling Titanite. More Thralls await ahead, including Scholars who are slow enemies but can dish out good damage.
When you come to an intersection, take left and loop around to a ledge to find a Soul of a Crestfallen Knight, while keeping your guard up for the ambushing Thrall. Take a right at the next intersection to come onto a balcony with another ambushing Thrall. Loot the Titanite Chunk and turn around to fight the Scholars. The Scholars are slow but can cast spells to slow you down, so take them out fast.
Before you move forward, interact with the pool of molten wax and dip your head in, as it will be useful in the next part and throughout this area. Search for a bookcase stairs to your right and go up to find a Titanite Scale.
Now go left and around to come face to face with a Lothric Knight with a spear. Pull him back to the open area if you’re having difficulty fighting him in the narrow confines. After you defeat him, grab the Titanite Chunk to his right and then head into the smaller room to obtain a Crystal Chime.
Go back to the area with scholars and the molten was pool. Dip your head in wax before enter through the door to your right into a dark room. You’ll find a crystal lizard who will scurry up some stairs. Chase it down to find a Twinkling Titanite and a Chaos Gem. Don’t be alarmed by the ghostly hands stretching out of the books on the shelves. If you hadn’t dipped your head in wax, these hands would damage you and build up your curse meter. But assuming you have, the ghost hands are harmless (which probably explains why all the scholars had wax on their head).
There should be another Crystal Lizard in this room, but in case it escaped, return later to take it down too for 2 Twinkling Titanite. Loot the Soul of a Nameless Soldier in the corner and don’t be scared of the ghost hands trying to grab you, as your head should be dipped in wax still. From here, look to your left for a passage between the book cases that will lead into a small room where you can find a chest containing the Power Within Pyromancy spell and Witch’s Locks.
Proceed up the stairs where a Scholar guards a Titanite Scale to the left. Another Scholar will emerge from the door on the right lined with bookcases containing the ghost hands. In the outer room you’ll find another Crystal Lizard who will drop 2 Twinkling Titanite, but this will also bring you in range of the Crystal Sage. Check the right side of the doorway for a corpse holding a Titanite Chunk. Look for a ladder close by and kick it down, creating a shortcut up here from the entrance.
As you move forward, you’ll need to dodge the Crystal Sage’s spells until you reach below the platform he is on and out of his sight. Head to the balcony outside and loot the 3 Homeward Bones. There’s a switch in the middle of the inside balcony to lower a few of the shelves that’s also surrounded by hands. If you need more wax to dunk your head into, look for the three Thralls on the stairway who are guarding another pool. Kill the Thralls, loot the Titanite Chunk nearby, and go back to the switch between the bookcases to pull the lever.
Go up the stairs on the right but be prepared to take on 2 Thralls. Head downwards to avoid getting hit by the sage then sprint towards the scholar. Take out the scholar then attack the sage. You could also take the ladder in the balcony around here to approach him from behind. If you don’t manage to kill the sage in time, he’ll teleport onto a bridge across the way.
To reach him you need to kill some more scholars, but watch out for the Thrall lobbing firebombs at you from the stairs. Clear these enemies and move forward. Go back and dunk your head in wax again if you have to as many of the shelves ahead are trapped with the ghost hands. A scholar waits to your left who is guarding a Titanite Scale.
Drop down onto the bridge to fight the sage and finish him off. Even if he teleports, it’ll be just down the bridge so you can take him out here. Defeating him rewards you with a Crystal Scroll.
From here, you can drop off onto a balcony so that you can go back to get the rest of the loot you passed by. A crystal lizard waits just down the balcony that will drop 2 Titanite Scale. Now if you had pulled the lever between those trapped bookcases, you can go back and search the balcony near the first scholars to find that some of the bookshelves have been lowered to make way to a chest containing a Titanite Slab, which is needed to reinforce a weapon to its max level!
As a side note, you could summon Orbeck for the boss fight of this area assuming you met some prerequisites. If you give Orbeck all 4 Scrolls and buy all his spells, he will depart from the Shrine, but then he will be available a summon before the boss area. Also, Orbeck will give you different rewards as you give him scrolls. Buy 3 spells and give him one scroll to obtain the Young Dragon Ring. Buy Aural Decay, Farron Flashsword and Pestilent Mercury to obtain the Slumbering Dragon Ring. You’ll also obtain the Silent Ally Gesture from him.
Now go back to the main platform where you found the second pool of wax. Go up the stairs where the Thrall was waiting on the bookshelves. Before moving forward, dunk your head in wax. Kill the scholar at the end of the trapped cases and drop down onto a bookshelf below to obtain a Titanite Scale.
Drop down onto the bookshelves below (this one is a longer drop so make sure you have enough HP) to find Avelyn, a very powerful crossbow.
Time to return to the area with the ghost hand books on the floor. A corpse behind the bookcase next to the ladder holds a Titanite Scale. Notice the wall here that has an arch outline on it? Strike it to reveal an illusory wall. Enter the room to fight another Outrider Knight. Approach him sneakily to get a few free hits in before the fight starts. If your head has no wax, avoid the bookshelves as they are trapped with the ghost hands. Defeat the Outrider Knight and now you’ll have the full Outrider Armor Set! Moving on from here you will come onto a small walkway with a corpse holding a Soul Stream sorcery.
Go back to the ladder and head down. Loot the Shriving Stone in the corner and find the lever on the right side. Pull the lever and it will remove some rows of shelves to create a shortcut back to the small wax pool. There’s also a corpse here holding a Scholar’s Ring.
It’s time to head to the other side of the bride and into a corridor where a Lothric Knight awaits. Try sneaking up to land a backstab and then carefully take him out. Cross the bridge and ascend the stairs to find a lift to your right. Take the lift down to the very bottom floor where you will find another level to remove even more shelves, creating a new shortcut to get up there.
Take the lift back up and proceed forward to find yourself in a room with many bookshelves and scholars. If you approach the scholars up close, be wary of the ghost hands. Kill the scholars and search the back of the room for a Large Soul of a Crestfallen Knight. Move on and loot the chest on the way to find 3 Titanite Scale.
Ascend the stairs and look for a Crystal Lizard to your right who will drop a Twinkling Titanite and a Refined Gem. A bit more to the right is also a Fleshbite Ring, but this is guarded by the trapped ghost hands.
Go outside and take the ladder down onto the rooftops. Move down the path and head right. There is a small pit you some roofing below. Jump from the raised roof onto the buttress on the other side and the drop below safely to obtain a Titanite Chunk. You will have to go back up after you drop, however.
When you’re on the roof again look to your right for a body that will give you a Titanite Chunk, but as you approach it, a Gargoyle will descend to block your path. Use the same strategy as you had in the Profaned Capital to take out the Gargoyle. Wait for it to lower its wings when its defenses are down.
Go left from here and you’ll see another Gargoyle up above. If you look below you’ll spot a Corvian Shaman and some Corvians around him. If you want to take them on, you could try with a plunging attack but it would be a very difficult fight with all the Corvians around. So let’s wait before we do that.
Move forward around the rooftop to find another Gargoyle in front of a Soul of a Weary Warrior. Kill the Gargoyle and notice the two Crystal Lizards up ahead. If you attempt to go for them, the last Gargoyle will swoop down to block your path. So you may want to snipe the Gargoyle and draw its attention before you try to go for the Crystal Lizards. After you kill the Gargoyle, go for the Lizards to obtain a Heavy Gem and Twinkling Titanite from one and a Sharp Gem and Twinkling Titanite from the other.
Now onto the Corvians below. If you had dropped from the buttress, loot the Hollow Gem inside a small room by the balcony. From here, you could try to pull the Corvians in small groups into the alcove where you can take them down with fewer number of enemies to contend with. After you clear them, you’ll notice a small section of the roof past them that leads back to the balconies of the mail hall. There’s a tower in the way, however, so to get there you would need to make a running jump onto the other side. There’s a corpse here holding 3 Titanite Scale.
Now, go back again to the roofs with the Crystal Lizards where you will find more paths to explore, but all lead to the same destination. Past the lizards you’re basically back where you originally came onto the roofs where you will find a Titanite Chunk. The path to the right takes you to a small balcony with a corpse holding 2 Titanite Chunk.
Inside, you will face a Lothric Knight who uses enchantments on his Greatsword. Kill him and move along the walkway to find some Thralls on the inside support beams who will ambush you. Use ranged weapons to bring them down. The path ahead also has a broken window which is where you would have entered through had you taken the other side. A scholar waits here guarding a corpse holding an Undead Bone Shard. Loot the Ember nearby and kick the ladder down to create a shortcut to bypass the rooftops. There’s also a pool of wax if you need to dunk your head into wax again.
Prepare for a challenging fight ahead as you go outside. You’ll find yourself in a large courtyard where three human opponents await. One of them wears Faraam Armor and wields a greataxe. Another is a thief sporting two katanas and a bow. And the last is a mage who will rain crystal spells at you. You don’t want to rush into the courtyard. Try to take them one individually. Engage the enemy with the greataxe, letting the other two attempt to take you out from a range. Be constantly mobile and dodge around the Farram warrior to kill him quickly. This warrior may use his weapon art roar to buff his attack, so watch for his long reach attack when he’s boosted. After defeating him, go for the thief, who will use his weapon arts to lunge at you and attack his sides. Go after the mage after the first two are down. He is rather weak up close after his buddies are down. The Warrior will drop a Golden Wing Crest Shield, the Thief will drop Onikiri and Ubadachi, and the Sorcerer will drop a Sage’s Crystal Staff.
Proceed to the stairs ahead but make sure to loot the Large Soul of a Crestfallen Knight before you enter the next room. Here you will find the lift that goes all the way down to the first bonfire, creating a shortcut to bypass the Grand Archives entirely!
A few more things to do before we go find Prince Lothric. Go around the first dome to find a corpse holding a Soul of a Crestfallen Knight. Before moving up the domes, look up. Do you see the 3 Winged Knights up on the tower? As you ascend the stairs, these golden Winged Knights will descend down and start patrolling the area. So don’t rush into them, and wait for them to separate before you take them on one by one.
One of these Knights wields axes and has great mobility. So when you fight this one, use extra cation. He will often soar into the air to dive at you with his axes. But you can roll around his attacks and position yourself to land backstabs. The other two use their traditional halberds, but they will also use their wings to their advantage to fly out of reach before charging at you. Watch out for the very fast charge which you should try to roll to your side to avoid. After you defeat all 3 of these Knights, you will be rewarded with another legendary Titanite Slab.
Don’t leave yet, search the other side of the tower for an Estus Shard on the balcony. Also, take the stairs inside the spire to go up and find a Hunter’s Ring.
Go to the base of the spire and enter the building from the other side. There is a trapdoor that leads to the rafters of the Archives. Drop down onto the beam and then onto the cage. Look for the trapdoor on the cage and drop down inside where you will find a Divine Pillars of Light miracle. Exit the cage and onto the beams but watch out for the Maggot Priest below who will shoot spears at you. Don’t drop down yet, make your way to the other side to find a corpse holding a Blessed Gem. Drop down and take out the priest now, approaching him with your guard up.
Go right and you’ll find a ladder. There are two chests by the ladder, one with a Divine Blessing and another with 3 Twinkling Titanite. From here take the passage out of the broken window to get back to the rooftops.
With the rest of the area explored, it’s time to make your way towards the last Lord of Cinder. Take the shortcut lift onto the bridge that leads to the throne room. You’ll notice many barricades on your way with an army of Hollows hiding behind them waiting to stop your advances.
4 Hollow Soldiers are stationed behind the first barricade. 4 Archers wait by the second group. 3 more Hollows with spears will come down the stairs. You will also find a patrolling red-eyed Lothric Knight up ahead. Try to take on the Hollows in groups as you make your way up to the Knight. Kill the Knight and climb the next set of stairs where you will find 2 more Knights coming down with spears, with another wielding Greatsword beyond them. Be patient and pull the Knights when they are out of range with a throwing knife or arrow. The pair with the spears is difficult to divide, so use caution. This may be a very challenging climb, but this is the last push before we meet Prince Lothric.
After you take out the Hollows and the Knights you will find yourself in front of the door to throne room where our dear Prince Lothric awaits along with his brother Lorian. Before you charge in, however, activate the lift on the right that will take you all the way down to the bridge by the bonfire of the Dragon Slayer Armour, creating a very convenient shortcut to the boss fight.
One last thing before engaging the boss. This lift is like the lift back in Undead Settlement that was giving Siegward such a hard time. When you take the lift to the very bottom, hop off as it is about to go up. Another lift will come up from below! Take this lift down in order to find a corpse holding yet another legendary Titanite Slab!
With the Grand Archives explored, and the shortcut to the boss created, it’s time to head up to the throne room. You will find the summon signs for Sirris and Orbeck, assuming you have completed their quests so far. When you’re ready, it’s time to fight the twin princes Lothric and Lorian.
BOSS FIGHT – LORIAN AND LOTRHIC
As you enter the throne room, Prince Lothric will actually be out of reach safely while Prince Lorian charges at you during Phase 1. After you defeat Lorian, phase 2 will begin with Lothric will join the fight on his brother’s back.
Don’t be fooled by the hulking Lorian’s crippled state. He makes up for it by teleporting all over the place throughout the fight followed by powerful slashing attacks, and he will teleport right by you and attack you as you enter the throne room, so be on your guard. Note that because of his random teleport location, you will have to get used to rotating your camera quickly to find him and lock on to him if you want to roll out of his attacks safely.
Lorian’s attacks consist of 2 to 3 hit combos in front of him in wide arcs. He is fast and preparing himself for another combo, which will leave very little openings. So be mobile, and try to get a hit or two in between his combos. His attacks hit really hard, so you will have to be roll happy. A strong shield with fire resistance helps a lot too to block his attacks safely. At mid range he’ll do a thrust attack which you can roll to your side. Unless you can roll close to him, be careful about trying to get some hits in as he will retaliate rather quickly. If you’re trying to chug estus from a safe distance, you may be taken off guard with his lunge that has a decent reach and is insanely fast. Lorian is very smart as he will try to feign an attack only to teleport behind you and catch you off guard. So keep your ears pricked to hear for the sound of his teleport and also the flashing light. Because of the camera, sometimes it is difficult to roll out of the way after his teleports. Another strong attack is when he gets on one knee. He will try to stand and then plant his sword on the ground for massive aoe damage. You want to run back as far back as you can when he does this.
If you’re a spellcaster and trying to create distance, be wary of his ranged attacks as well. Look out when he charges his blade with a glow. Be ready to dodge to your side as that indicates a magical blast coming your way. He’ll also raise his sword and slice in front of him in an arc to send out a flaming trail.
After you defeat Lorian, Lothric comes to his side during Phase 2 and resurrect him. The main objective of Phase 2 is to kill Lothric (they each have their own HP bar). Since Lothric is on Lorian’s back, you could try to position behind Lorian and attack with a thrusting weapon to do damage directly to Lothric. Otherwise, you could try taking Lorian down again, in which case, Lothric will resurrect his brother yet again (at 50% HP) and keep doing so until Lothric himself is felled. However, while Lothric is resurrecting Lorian, this buys you some time to get a few strong hits in. So buff yourself up and strike him as hard as you can during the few second when he is vulnerable. If you can’t get the job done in one try, get back to safety to avoid the aoe damage as Lothric rises again.
As for their attacks. Lorian has the same moveset as in Phase 1, but he will be even more aggressive and his teleportation will be more erratic. His brother Lothric will attack you as well with homing soulmasses, which you will need to roll out of the way for. As the shards are flying at out, Lorian will teleport and keep trying to hit you as well as the brothers try to pinch you from two directions. You have to be constantly rolling out of the way while these shards are coming at you. Lothric will also shoot soul spears at you, indicated by a glowing charge up, and this usually follows right after Lorian’s magical blast. So you’ll have to dodge these blasts twice in a row, sometimes 3 times.
Lorian is weak to magic damage and lightning damage, so if you have weapons or spells base on those damages, you should use them. Another strategy is to equip a good fire resistant shield and circle around him to position behind him to get some hits in. Also, attacking Lorian a few times from the front will cause him to stagger which you can follow up with a critical hit. Lorian’s attacks can be parried, but you won’t be able to riposte him.
Take your time during phase 2 to carefully deplete Lothric’s HP. Don’t get greedy to try to aim for Lothric only. If you find the openings, go for Lorian and take him out, as this will mean you have plenty of time to hit Lothric too. After you have defeated Lothric, both the brothers will fall and you will be rewarded with the last Cinders of a Lord and the Soul of the Twin Princes.
That’s it. You have defeated all the Lords of Cinder. You’ll now have to place their cinders on their respective thrones in the Firelink Shrine and then proceed to the last boss fight of the game. If you haven’t explored the Consumed King’s Garden or Untended Graves yet, now may be a good time to check it out before you go for the last boss fight. Also, the secret area Archdragon Peak has some more loot and items to offer as well.
On a side note, if you had bought all of Orbeck’s spells and he had departed from Firelink Shrine, you can now find his corpse and ashes in the Grand Archives. If you turn in these ashes to the Shrine Handmaid, she will sell you all of his spells. Giving his ashes to Yuria will earn you the Morion Blade.
Also, if you have been helping Sirris so far (assisting her Irithyll and in Undead Settlement), then you can head to that area outside Firelink Shrine with the lone hollow looking out over the cliff. Where you had found Hodrick’s Shield earlier, now you will find Sirris’ Sunless Talisman. Her armor set will also be available for purchase from the Handmaid.