Dark Souls 2 Twinkling Titanite Farming Guide

by JoeyTheSchmo

Spreadsheet here containing step-by-step guides, comparisons, analysis, and all that sweet, sweet data.


I’ve split the methods up into two groups:

Farming Methods

These methods are defined by being entirely self-sustaining, and consist largely of enemies that can be farmed while in Covenant of Champions. In order of availability:

  1. Poison Statue Clusters
  2. Frozen Golems
  3. Archdrake Pilgrims/Priestesses
  4. Dragon Aerie Runs

Ascetic Methods

These methods consume 1 Bonfire Ascetic per run, in return for very high efficiency. Also included here is the Aldia’s Keep run, which allows you to farm Ascetics sustainably. In order of availability:

  1. Brume Tower (Foyer bonfire)
  2. Dragon Sanctum (Hidden Sanctum bonfire)
  3. Aldia’s Keep (Foregarden bonfire)
  4. Dragon Shrine

Overview

Before we get our hands dirty in the hard numbers, I’ll point out a few of the methods which stand out.


Earliest Method Possible:

Far and away, this is the Poison Statue Clusters. These little guys can be farmed after beating only a single boss – the Rotten – and the DLC key can be grabbed even earlier, allowing you to stock up on Twinkling Titanite (and Human Effigies) before ever setting foot in the Forest of Fallen Giants.


Best No-Ascetics Method:

Likely a suprise to noone, this is the Archdrake Pilgrims and Priestesses, probably the single best known method of them all. If you are dead-set on never using an Ascetic, then you will see the best results with this method.


Best Self-Sustained Method:

A bit less commonplace, the Dragon Aerie Run is far and away the best method to not require any resources to run, although you will need to raise the bonfire Intensity every run.


Most Ascetic-Efficient Method:

For the low price of 1 Ascetic per run, using the Dragon Sanctum Ascetic method you can loot 3 Twinkling Titanite and 3 Petrified Dragon Bones. The closest competitor is the Dragon Shrine run, which offers 1 Slab along with 3 Twinkling.


Highest Twinkling-per-Minute:

This is actually a toss-up; if you have Ascetics to burn, then the Brume Tower Ascetic run has the highest output by nearly 20%. If you don’t, then this spot lands solidly in the lap of the Dragon Aerie Run.


Worst Method

Somehow, even with low expectations, I’m still disappointed by the Frozen Golems. The run is inconsistent, the enemies do too much damage, the drop rates are bad, and I lost 2.5m souls while farming them by going afk while wearing the Symbol of Avarice.

That’s nothing to do with the Golems really. I just needed to get that out there.


Breakdowns

With the best-of’s out of the way, let’s dive into the numbers!


Farming Methods


Poison Statue Clusters

  • Total Killed: 900
  • Average Run Time: 1:08.33
  • Twinkling Titanite Drop Rate: 8%
  • Effigy Drop Rate: 7.78%
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 0.2107

While it pales in comparison to methods that become available later in the game, this method has the distinction of being your single option for self-sustainable farming of Twinkling Titanite in the early-game. It is also one of two methods listed here which give Human Effigies, for what thats worth.


Frozen Golems

  • Total Killed: 250
  • Average Run Time: 3:02.09
  • Twinkling Titanite Drop Rate: 10.8%
  • Effigy Drop Rate: 11.6%
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 0.1779

This is easily the worst of the methods – not only does it have the lowest TpM of any method I tested, it also doesn’t unlock until Drangleic Castle, by which point it is nearly useless. Don’t bother with this one.

2.5 million souls!


Archdrake Pilgrims/Priestesses

  • Average Run Time: 0:44.62
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 0.8607

Pilgrims

  • Total Killed: 900
  • Twinkling Titanite Drop Rate: 21.33%

Priestesses

  • Total Killed: 900
  • Twinkling Titanite Drop Rate: 7.89%

Standing funny-helmet-and-shoulders above the other enemy-based methods is this old mainstay. If you plan to abstain from using Ascetics entirely, this will be your sole method of sustainable farming – hope you brought your galoshes!


Dragon Aerie Runs

  • Average Run Time: 3:07
  • Twinkling-per-Run: 7
  • PDB-per-Run: 1
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 2.2500

Far and away the best self-sustaining method, this is also the only Ascetic run where you don’t have to even see the powered-up enemies after you’re done – you can skip right over the Aerie on future NG cycles, so pumping the Intensity up has no practical downside. This run in particular really prioritizes Twinkling Titanite: you kill only the Crystal Lizards which drop Twinkling, the Drake which drops it, and grab the lootable 1x.


Ascetic Methods

A quick note on these runs: each will have “Adjusted” info listed. This factors in the time it takes to do one Aldia’s Keep run, effectively closing the resource loop. This “Adjusted” number is the one to look for if you intend to sustain these methods, while the standard listings apply if you are simply spending Ascetics.


Brume Tower (Foyer bonfire)

  • Twinkling-per-Run: 3
  • Average Run Time: 1:03.34
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 2.8420
  • Adjusted Run Time: 2:32.51
  • Adjusted Twinkling-per-Minute: 1.1802

This method is the absolute ceiling for Twinkling Titanite farming. If you find yourself with Ascetics to spend, then this is the fastest way to exchange them for Twinkling Titanite, though not the most overall cost-effective. Even factoring in farming Ascetics from Aldia’s Keep, this method still tops any other besides the Dragon Aerie Run.


Dragon Sanctum (Hidden Sanctum bonfire)

  • Twinkling-per-Run: 3
  • PDB-per-Run: 3
  • Average Run Time: 1:27.57
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 2.0555
  • Adjusted Run Time: 2:56.76
  • Adjusted Twinkling-per-Minute: 1.0184

This is the most bang for your buck, in terms of Ascetics. It’s worth noting that the Twinkling-per-Minute numbers here are the same for Petrified Dragon Bones, making this a strong method if you are in need of both. Shout-out to TheSphinxGuyOfAladin for helping test this one!


Dragon’s Shrine

  • Twinkling-per-Run: 3
  • Average Run Time: 1:27.11
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 2.0663
  • Adjusted Run Time: 2:56.29
  • Adjusted Twinkling-per-Minute: 1.0210

This is the most difficult of the Ascetic runs; it’s the only one where you are forced to fight, and not just any enemy. You have to fight the Greathammer Drakekeeper each and every run. It’s also worth noting that by adding ~25 sec to the run you can grab the respawning Slab as well, although they are pretty common by the late-game. This method doesn’t have much anything to set it apart from the other Ascetic runs, and is further damned by being a non-optional area.


Aldia’s Keep

  • Ascetic-per-Run: 1
  • Average Run Time: 1:29.18
  • Ascetics-per-Minute: 0.6728

You may also choose to grab the two PDB x1 lootables, giving these results:

  • Average Run Time: 1:41.63
  • Ascetics-per-Minute: 0.5904
  • PDB-per-Minute: 1.1808

This run is the crux upon which all the other Ascetic methods function. While you can farm Ascetics in the Chasms of the Abyss, it rapidly becomes inefficient – CoC doesn’t work there, and you will have to kill an increasingly powerful Darklurker each time you refresh the enemies.

While this is a non-optional area, there’s nothing thats too hard to handle on future passes.


BONUS: Giant Lord

This method only works in base DS2, not SotFS edition (where the Twinkling x2 no longer respawns), and as such I didn’t intend to mention it. I’m doing so now because TheSphinxGuyOfAladin stepped in and ran the tests, so thanks to them once again!

  • Average Run Time: 2:17.40
  • Twinkling-per-Minute: 0.7951

If you have the ability to do this run, then it is a solid option, especially given the 500k+ souls you will get in the bargain for completing each run.


Conclusion

Here’s a quick recap in the form of rankings, by Twinkling-per-Minute:

NO ALDIA RUNS

  1. Brume Tower: 2.8420
  2. Dragon Aerie: 2.2500
  3. Dragon Shrine: 2.0663
  4. Dragon Sanctum: 2.0555
  5. Archdrake Pilgrims/Priestesses: 0.8607
  6. Poison Statue Cluster: 0.2107
  7. Frozen Golem: 0.1779

WITH ALDIA RUNS

  1. Dragon Aerie: 2.2500
  2. Brume Tower: 1.1802
  3. Dragon Shrine: 1.0210
  4. Dragon Sanctum: 1.0184
  5. Archdrake Pilgrims/Priestesses: 0.8607
  6. Poison Statue Cluster: 0.2107
  7. Frozen Golem: 0.1779

And that’s all, folks!

800+ runs later,and I’m ready to put a bow on this one. Here’s hoping it’s of use or interest to somebody out there!

If you’re interested in my testing methodology, step-by-step guides for each method, my run notes, or a shit-load of data (including full drop table info for some additional enemies, tracking of drop rate changes over time, and more), check out the spreadsheet!

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