The enemies here have a habit of transforming into more troublesome types, but during the 10 seconds or so that they take to change form they're pretty vulnerable, so strike quickly.
Follow the path down and to the left, pass the caravan, and head through the pass ahead. Turn right and drop down to the area below.
Before you make your way through the arch head down the narrow slope opposite it to face a Brigand - he takes a fair amount of damage, but quick strikes should be enough to stunlock him if you can keep him on the narrow slope. He also drops a set of gear - nice!
Head through the arch now, and run up the slope to your left to deal with the enemy above before carrying on through the area. Just in front of the large archway ahead are a large group of enemies. If you give them a chance to transform things can escalate very quickly, so work fast!
Head through the arch and activate the Halfway Fortress bonfire. Talk to the two characters in the area, then carry on down the slope.
The enemies in the next area all have long pointy sticks which they'll try and poke you with. While their attacks have a long wind up time and are easily avoided, if several of them bunch up together it can get tricky. The water plays host to some giant crabs too, so watch out if you stray too close.
Follow the path down, and when it reaches the edge of the water take a detour to the right to collect an item. Now head the other way, and spend some time amongst the trees as there are several items to collect, as well as some barnacle-encrusted creatures that emit poisonous gas if you hang around too long.
Light the Crucifixion Woods bonfire
When the area is clear, head between the two crumbling pillars and up the slope to the right to find the Crucifixion Woods bonfire.
You can proceed in one of two ways here:
Head forwards and slightly to the left to confront a couple of tree-wielders. Kill them and then locate a nearby, collapsed section of wall you can enter through.
There are a large number of enemies in here, including one with projectile attacks, so leading them out through the small opening should help you keep things manageable.
Head up the stairs and cross the stone walkway. Just to the right of the doorway ahead is a waiting enemy, so prepare to dodge as you enter. Turn right and then left and prepare for an ambush as you grab the glowing gem insect from the end of the corridor, then head through the archway.
Drop into the water and wade across to the square stone area opposite, then climb the steps and head through the arch on your left. Deal with the enemy opposite.
Loot the Ring of Sacrifice
The paths reconvene here. Head up the stairs past a couple more enemies, then duck through the arch at the top and drop down on to the platform below to grab a Ring of Sacrifice. Drop down again, head through the arch, cross the room, and head into the stairwell.
Turn right at the end and through the door on your right into a long room. An enemy lurks behind the pillars to your right, a couple more are hiding towards the other end, and a projectile firer is in the far arch - watch out for the hole in the ground too.
Deal with them as needed and head on up the path at the other end to fight the next boss.
How to kill the Crystal Sage
The first phase is fairly simple. The boss has limited physical attacks and will mostly just fire purple crystals at you from range. Dodge-roll towards him and get in a few blows, and after he's taken a bit of damage he'll vanish and reappear elsewhere.
Repeat this a few times to wear him down to half health and trigger the second phase.
Now there will be multiple enemies, but the only one you actually have to defeat is the one firing purple crystals - the others will shoot at you still, so you need to weigh up the risks and benefits between getting the fight over more quickly and reducing the time that you're under threat, or eliminating potential sources of damage.
The longer the fight goes on, the more chance of being hit by a blue shot, but the more blue guys you kill the fewer things you'll have firing at you. Which strategy you take depends partly on where the purple boss is in relation to the others, but if you can locate him quickly and position yourself so that he's between you and the others, the fight can be over quickly.
Light the bonfire, return to Firelink to attend to any levelling up or restocking you need to do, then return to the bonfire once more.
Head through the narrow archway to the left of the bonfire and follow the path aound. You'll encounter a saw-wielder, and a second one is a little further on - look out for him if you get too close while fighting the first.
Don't go all the way down the slope yet. Once the saw heavies are dead, head back up and turn the corner at the top, and then drop down to the platform below to find another gem insect.
The path branches now. Heading straight on will drop you back on the slope, while taking the right fork will bring you to a vantage point behind a magic user with a heavy hammer.
Whichever route you take, deal with her, pillage the corpse for a set of gear, and then cross the stone bridge to find the Cathedral of the Deep bonfire.
- The next part of our walkthrough explains how to beat the Deacons of the Deep in Dark Souls 3.
- Alternatively you can return to the index page for more entries in our Dark Souls 3 guide.