Online or Multiplayer is part of Dark Souls 3. Players are encouraged to summon and be summoned and experience the game with others. Please see the Hollow Arena page for information relating to PVP arena.


Online Information


  • Connection Servers are dedicated
  • Online play is platform specific; no cross-platform play.
  • Online interaction happens when the player has used an Ember by summoning of phantoms via signs they place on the ground with a White Sign Soapstone. You may also encounter unwelcome invasions from hostile players using invasion items and covenant mechanics.
  • Up to 6 players can interact in the same session, which happens seamlessly during gameplay, each player taking on the roles of cooperator and/or hostile invader. The different Covenants and soapstone signs change the ratio of companions to invaders. It is possible to have anything from a 3v3 to a 1v5 scenario. Even 4vs2 (4 Friendly, 2 Enemy) Check Dried Finger Notes 
  • The amount of souls gained by the phantom post boss fight appears to be 25% of the boss's normal reward (Tested on Soul of Cinder).
  • Using the Dried Finger resets the invasion timer and allows a host player to summon a 3rd phantom as well opening themselves up to a 2nd invading phantom.
  • Matchmaking is once again level-based, as well as taking into account the upgrade level of a player's weapon. Please see the Summon Range Calculator for details on the exact level ranges.
  • You can summon other players regardless of NG/NG+ differences. There are no NG conditions for matchmaking.
  • Password Matching (as seen in Bloodborne Online) is a feature and disregards the aforementioned soul level and weapon upgrade level matchmaking in lieu of a normalizing adjustment to phantom attack power. Password matching DOES NOT allow you to summon a friend in a cleared area with a White Sign Soapstone. However, you can still summon them using a Red Sign Soapstone
  • In addition to the basic online parameters listed below, Covenants also alter the multiplayer experience for players. Several of the covenants are defense pacts that send players in to defend a specific area from being completed by exploring players, each with their own specific mechanics.
  • Phantoms have half their current estus charges when in a host's world, rounded down (i.e. 1 flask turns into 0, 3 turns into 1, etc).
  • Covenant signs cannot be swapped out when trying to connect to someone else's world. 
  • Other players summon signs will disappear as long as yours is active.
  • Hosts, friendly phantoms, and hostile phantoms can get an estus chargeback if another hostile or friendly phantom dies.
  • Some bosses will only allow you to summon a specific amount of phantoms.
  • 6 player PvP matches can be quickly made in Irithyll of the Boreal Valley by equipping the Way of Blue Covenant in the area after the Pontiff Sulyvahn bonfire.
  • For killing an invader, the host receives 15% of the souls required for the invader's most recent level-up (rounded down). See the Level page for the soul requirements.
  • For killing the host of another world, invaders receive 4% of the souls required for the host's most recent level-up (rounded down).
  • For killing an invader summoned via Red Sign Soapstone , the host receives roughly 1% or less (topping at 0,75%) of the souls required for the invader's most recent level-up (rounded down).
  • For killing the host of another world which summoned the invader via Red Sign Soapstone, the invader will receive around 10% of the souls required for the host's most recent level-up (rounded down).
  • Remember, accepting items via online play is risky, some of these may be hacked items in which you can get banned for. So be careful about who you accept items from


Phantoms (Ghosts)

Other players will be shown in the game world as phantoms (ghosts). You cannot interact with phantoms, and they cannot interact with you. Use other phantoms as a guide to what may happen next in-game.


Examine a blood stain left behind in a spot where another player died, and you'll view a replay of that player's death. Like with phantoms, you can use this as a guide to what may happen next.


The messages you can write in the main menu will be sent to other players. You'll also receive messages written by other players in your world. Messages can be rated. If other players rate your messages, you'll regain a little HP.

Use a White Sign Soapstone to cast a soul sign, and that sign will be sent to other players' worlds. If you're summoned from the sign, you'll be transported to the summoner's world. Soul signs can be cast by anyone, whether living or undead, but you must have the power of the Lord of Cinder to summon other players.

white_sign_soapstone-icon.pngCo-Op Play

Use a White Sign Soapstone, and you'll be able to play co-op with up to Three other players. However, playing with three other players requires the host to use the Dried finger. The summoning player is called the "host", and the summoned players are called the "clients". You cannot become a host if you've already defeated the boss of the current area. If you've turned voice chat on in the network options, you can chat between the host and the client.

Starting Co-op

  • The clients use a White Sign Soapstone to place a soul sign.
  • The host then examines the soul sign and summons the client.
  • The host and client play together in the host's world.

Success Conditions

If the host defeats the area's boss, the clients will receive rewards and return to their own worlds.

Failure Conditions

If the clients or host die or any return items are used, the client will return to their own world.

red_eye_orb-icon.pngCompetitive Play

Use a Red Eye Orb or Cracked Red Eye Orb and you'll be able to invade other players' worlds and play against them competitively. The invaded player is called the "host", and the invading player is called the "client". Up to two people can invade a world at once. Invaders treat each other as enemies and can attack and damage each other. You may also use a Red Sign Soapstone to be summoned to duel.

Starting Competitive Play

  • Please see Hollow Arena for PVP arena information.
  • The client uses a Red Eye Orb.
  • The client automatically invades the world of the selected host.
  • The host and client play against each other in the host's world.
  • You cannot invade into a host's world if the boss is dead.
  • Players can also use the Red Sign Soapstone to leave a summon sign for duels.
  • The red soapstone sign can still be used to be summoned into a host's world that has already killed the boss.
  • RSS phantoms don't take a health penalty.
  • If the host uses a Dried Finger, the invasion timer is reset, making more rapid invasions possible.
  • When Summoned by RSS you can profit of the health bonus from ember form if you embed BEFORE placing your sign, resulting in being a red phantom with 1.3x health.

Success Conditions

If the host is defeated, the client will receive rewards and return to their own world.

Failure Conditions

If the client dies, the host enters a boss room, or any return items are used, the client will return to their own world.

ember-icon.pngLord of Cinder

In order to summon other players, you must use an Ember to obtain the power of the Lord of Cinder. Using an Ember allows you to become a multiplayer host. When in Lord of Cinder mode, your character's appearance will change, and you'll have the following effects until you die:

  • Maximum HP boosted 1.3x
  • Able to summon other players via soul sign as well as be invaded.
  • The icon next to gauges change.

Note: If you're summoned by another player while in Lord of Cinder mode, your maximum HP will go back to normal until you return to your world.

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    • Anonymous

      Pros and cons of ds3 pvp(as an invader):

      Pros: more build options, more balanced enemy placement for anti-ganks, consistent combos, good setups for earlygame damage, insane freedom for late game builds, heavily rewards skill and game sense

      Cons: gankers, hackers. I would say twinks here as well, but that can be countered pretty well by certain weapons that reward certan playstyles, like Lucerne/glaive, Hollowslayer, sellsword twinblades, dark hand, etc.

      Also, no offense to you RKPG twinks, but y'all are honestly easier to fight than non twinks.

      • Anonymous

        I am currently trying out a SL-1 (no weapon upgrades) pvp build and usually the pairing (red soapstone) with other players works just fine.
        However, sometimes I also get paired with players that deal damage well outside the expected level ranges. Like losing 4/5 of the hp from a simple 2-handed firelink greatsword swing or getting outright one-shot.

        Is the scaling/summoning range different for the red soapstone (e.g. compared to the white signs)?

        • Anonymous

          RoF stamina glitch really dampened this. The amount of people who run forever, hide themselves on ladder if they can, really bums out the experience.

          • Anonymous

            Reasons Ds3 online is bad:
            - poorly designed p2p severs
            - next to no balance
            - terrible anticheat
            - no maintenance or patches
            - bad invasion system

            Reasons DS3 online is good:
            - despite how terrible it is, it is still fun

            • Anonymous

              How to enjoy online without any lat: Nuke every country that isn't yours
              (solution only has a 25% chance of eliminating all lag)

              • Anonymous

                *defeats an invader after an intense chase resulting in an all or nothing duel round the bonfire*

                Overly competetive players who hate any form of simple weapon: point down and dung pies

                Chads: point up regardless of what build they were using, only dissing hackers

                • Anonymous

                  Hey Flanders, I was working on a thesis for why Dark Souls 3 Online is good, but I accidently proved god isn't real instead.

                  • Anonymous

                    Basically if u wanna do pvp u have to use a longsword, goddamn people just spam R1 with that absurd phantom range

                    • Anonymous

                      Hey all,
                      lately, I feel kinda burnt out on the PVP of Dark Souls 3.
                      I really enjoyed PVP for a time, but after trying out different playstyles (invasion, duels etc.) and different builds/weapons I have the feeling to have seen it all.
                      Do you have any suggestions or ideas on how to mix up the PVP for a "new" or "different" PVP experience?
                      Maybe something along the line of "Capture the flag" where red phantoms go against blue phantoms to lead the flag (the host) to a certain location.
                      However, I don't think that this could be pulled off with the given mechanics of Dark Souls 3 PVP.
                      I would be happy to hear your thoughts. :)

                      • Anonymous

                        Back in the days of ps3, in ds1, i used to invade at darkroot garden, where pvp was quite active (some gonkers, but wasn't nearly as problematic) . Got some hatemails and i remember answering one of them with the following phrase: "when i get dark souls 3, maybe i show some honor."

                        That didn't age well. Glad i don't pay for ps scam plus anymore.

                        • Anonymous

                          I'm i the only one who plays in offline or only plays with my mates if so well i better quit this game because im clearly not playing it right

                          • Anonymous

                            Hey guys is it possible to summon 3 white phantoms with the Dried Fingers AND summon a red-sign phantom for 5-player DS3?

                            • Anonymous

                              I really hope that Elden Ring focuses the majority of the game's features to appeal to it's pvp like how it did with DS3. DS3 may be my second favorite Soulsborne game but it is very flawed when it comes to the pvp.

                              • Anonymous

                                DS3 pvp is one of those rare pvp's that is so bad that even when you're doing good you still don't enjoy it and you very quickly become bored of all of the backstabbing, lag switching, spell spamming meta slaves

                                • Anonymous

                                  Dark souls pvp ain't the best but it definitely isn't the worst as it's unique function's like no other pvp game. It just isn't meant for everyone but it's respectible

                                  • Anonymous

                                    Ds2 was the only Souls game with the tiniest bit decent PvP and Miyazaki didn't direct it. I don't know why y'all are getting you're hopes for Elden Ring PvP.

                                    • Anonymous

                                      Pvp was never meant to be competitive, some of you guys just have a superiority complex from playing a difficult game

                                      • Anonymous

                                        Do many people still play online, I’m looking to help out players with bosses and just wondered whether it’s still popular enough to be worth it?

                                        • Anonymous

                                          The horrible state of multiplayer in this game are the devs's fault for a minor part of it, but most of the fault falls to the community, wich has like 60% of the playerbase being players who got ds3 as their first souls game and never got any sense of difficulty thanks to straight sword's r1 spam winning most situations.

                                          At the beggining fromsoft did listen to the community a little, like "ok, let's be a little more lenient". But these ppl complained from day 1 about the things they weren't interested about, such as invaders being able to kill hosts, the usage of twink builds, certain weapons now known for the nerfs that killed them, etc.

                                          While hosts of embers and blue dudes got babysitted, ppl with interest in pvp for their covenants or some sort of fun got stuck with problems that never got solved, such as infinite summons, bypassing sl limitations to a phantom summoned from ng+2 to ng, dedicated gank squads with nothing else to do than camping the spawnzone of covenant members who needs to invade in order to progress in said covenant (yeah the items can be farmed, but they say the same about blues and darkmoon rewards and they start hating), matchmaking prioritizing worlds with most phantoms summoned, blue phantoms appearing non-stop, etc.

                                          The community asked for host's problems to be solved, but the invader's problems were ignored as they weren't interested in losing that long list of advantages. Therefore invaders had to make do with how little they had left, like one-shot builds and gankspank builds. That's the meta nowadays. Invaders get in a world of a solo host and they have a harder time against a host fightning alone because of how used is the invader to 3 or 4 ppl swimging mindlessly at him. Ganks are that frequent.

                                          Thankfully, invaders got hollow arena and spears of the church, the latter being the best solution against the ganking problem. Of course the majority of the community would complain about the spears of the church being "forced pvp", "artificial difficulty", etc. But the devs stopped listening by that point for a good reason: they accustomed the community to play with summons on the host's back and all the odds in their favor, wich wouldn't be different from the artificial difficulty Lautrec had in ds1 when we tried to kill him via black eye orb. Devs got tired in the last moment and said "we're done. Not fixing stuff we didn't break".

                                          Then there is hollow arena, empty as gael's arena. Ppl too used to have buddies on their back would likely be stomped whenever they find themselves on even ground with their opponents, and the brawls died rather quickly. Only 1 vs 1 left in there, wich is yet another example of the community too accustomed to 3 vs 1 situations.

                                          To finish this long rant, the state of multiplayer in this game is only on you, hosts of embers. If you encounter one-shot daggers, rtsr builds or force + hammer invaders against your gank squads, remember what brought them in the first place before hating on them.

                                          For invaders with some interest left in soul games's pvp, this state of online is a ds3 exclusive. Don't invade here if you want to be creative or have genuine fun.

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