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Dark Souls II

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games

This page is for the original release. For the re-release, see Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin.

Dark Souls II
Dark Souls II cover
Bandai Namco Entertainment
Japan FromSoftware
Release dates
Windows April 25, 2014
Metacritic 91
OpenCritic 88
Monetization One-time game purchase, DLC
Microtransactions None
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Third-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Action, RPG
Themes Fantasy
Series Dark Souls
Dark Souls II on HowLongToBeat
Dark Souls II on IGDB
Dark Souls II guide on StrategyWiki
Dark Souls II on MobyGames
Dark Souls II on Wikipedia
Dark Souls
Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition 2012
Dark Souls II 2014
Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin 2015
Dark Souls III 2016
Dark Souls: Remastered 2018

Dark Souls II is a singleplayer and multiplayer third-person action and RPG game in the Dark Souls series.

General information

Official manual
PC Report
Official Bandai Namco Support Thread
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
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DARK SOULS II Bundle also available.
Windows (unavailable)
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Green Man Gaming (unavailable)
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All versions require Steam DRM.

DLC and expansion packs

Essential improvements

Improve controller deadzone

The default controller deadzone is handled poorly compared to every other game in the franchise.
Steam Input Method[1]
  1. Right click on Dark Souls II and choose "Properties" > "Controller" > "Enable Steam Input"
  2. While the game is running press Shift Tab to access Big Picture Mode and then click "Controller Configuration"
  3. Click the Left Analogue Stick & then Click "Additional Settings" in the bottom right.
  4. Set "Dead Zone Shape" to Cross, "Dead Zone Inner" to 10 and "Anti-Dead Zone" to a value between 13 and 16 (I use 15). Repeat this for the Right Analogue Stick. Click a Slider and tap Left or Right on the keyboard to adjust it by 1.
  5. Export the configuration to save it and have the game automatically re-use it during subsequent game sessions.
Durazno XInput Wrapper Method[2]
  1. Download Durazno XInput Wrapper.
  2. Go to <path-to-game>\Game\ and extract the contents of the archive.
  3. Run the <path-to-game>\Game\Durazno.exe file.
  4. Enable the LinearADZ option.
  5. Change the AntiDeadzone option to 36%.
  6. Change the Deadzone option to 20%.


Running Durazno.exe regenerates Durazno.ini which you can also alter manually by opening it with Notepad.
If you don't want to use Durazno.exe, then you can use the following values in the Durazno.ini file: LinearADZ=1, AntiDeadzone=360 and Deadzone=200 to closely mimic the first game's deadzone.

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %APPDATA%\DarkSoulsII\GraphicsConfig.xml
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/236430/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game data location

System Location
Windows %APPDATA%\DarkSoulsII\<user-id>\DARKSII0000.sl2
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/236430/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud


Basic and advanced graphical settings.
Basic and advanced graphical settings.
Screen option menu.
Screen option menu.

Graphics feature State Notes
Widescreen resolution
16:9; use Flawless Widescreen to remove letterboxing.
Use Flawless Widescreen.
Use Flawless Widescreen.
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Default FOV is 75°. Use Dark Souls II FOV Fix.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Use Flawless Widescreen
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
On or Off Setting, FXAA
Vertical sync (Vsync)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
60 FPS
120+ FPS
Capped at 60 FPS.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.


Game option menu.
Game option menu.

Xbox buttons prompts explanation

The game is always displaying Xbox button prompts regardless of real input scheme thus making very hard to navigate menus.
Fortunately the game is also accepting in-game actions what would be bound on Xbox controller buttons. Use this as a reference guide.
Actions listed below can be bound to the same key.
Xbox controller button Action in-game
A Interact or confirm.
B Dash/backstep/roll or Cancel.
X Use item or Menu function 1
Y Wield right weapon two-handed or Menu function 2

Delay between mouse clicks and actions

You can bind some of your actions to mouse double clicks, however this feature is causing slight delay between single click and its action as the game is waiting for another click.
An option to disable double-clicking functionality was added in one of the patches, but it's bugged and doesn't persist after you exit the game.
Use QOL mod
Disables double-clicking functionality regardless of in-game setting.
Requires Scholar of the First Sin edition of the game.
  1. Get the mod here.
  2. Put dinput8.dll file in the game's main folder (where DarkSoulsII.exe is located).
Use additional buttons on gaming mouse[citation needed]
For users with gaming mouse or mouse with additional buttons.
  1. Bind your attacks on any unused keyboard key (F keys for example).
  2. Open your mouse setting application and bind your new attack keys to additional mouse buttons.
AutoHotkey script[3]
  1. Unbind all the mouse bindings in the game.
  2. Download and install AutoHotkey.
  3. Let application create sample script. This script file should open after installation.
  4. Delete everything, insert these lines and reload script (open AutoHotkey window (green H icon in tray area), navigate to File and hit Reload Script).

AutoHotkey script:

#SingleInstance Force
#MaxHotkeysPerInterval 99999`
#IfWinActive ahk_class DarkSouls2

; Hold to block with a shield in left hand
LShift::Send {u down}
LShift Up::Send {u up}

; Strong attack (left hand) / Parry
XButton1:: send {y down}
CapsLock up::
XButton1 up:: send {y up}

; Attack (left hand)
XButton2::send {u down}
XButton2 up::send {u up}

; Boss key
LAlt & Tab::AltTab

; Wield right weapon two-handed (hold for left weapon)

; Attack (right hand)
    send {h down}
    send {LButton down}
$LButton up::
    send {h up}
    send {LButton up}

; Strong attack (right hand)
    send {g down}
    send {RButton down}
$RButton up::
    send {g up}
    send {RButton up}

; Equipment menu
    send {Escape down}
    sleep 30
    send {Escape up}
    send {ENTER down}
    sleep 30
    send {ENTER up}

; Inventory menu
    send {Escape down}
    sleep 30
    send {Escape up}
    send {right down}
    sleep 30
    send {right up}
    send {ENTER down}
    sleep 30
    send {ENTER up}

; Player status menu
    send {Escape down}
    sleep 30
    send {Escape up}
    send {right down}
    sleep 30
    send {right up}
    send {right down}
    sleep 30
    send {right up}
    send {ENTER down}
    sleep 30
    send {ENTER up}

; Message menu
    send {Escape down}
    sleep 30
    send {Escape up}
    send {right down}
    sleep 30
    send {right up}
    send {right down}
    sleep 30
    send {right up}
    send {right down}
    sleep 30
    send {right up}
    send {ENTER down}
    sleep 30
    send {ENTER up}

; Interact (open doors, speak to the NPCs)

; Use item (drink dat estus)

; Guard break
    send {w down}
    send {h down}
    send {w up}
    send {h up}

; Jump attack
    send {w down}
    send {g down}
    send {w up}
    send {g up}

; Switch left weapon
    send {left down}
send {left up}

; Switch right weapon
    send {right down}
    send {right up}



  • This script was made with default DS II controls in mind, please reset your controls or be sure to adjust the script before using.
  • Doesn't break menu controls.
  • Left mouse button and right mouse button are bound to the right handed attacks.
  • Shift and Capslock are bound to the left hand, mouse 4 and mouse 5 works too
  • Tab to toggle between one-handed and two-handed stances, also try holding it and see what happens. Doesn't break AltTabbing.
  • E for interacting.
  • Q for using items (drink estus, etc.).
  • One-button jumping attacks and guard breaks with R and C, Ctrl + left or right mouse button works too.
  • Move your mouse wheel to the left or right to change weapons in both hands (if your mouse doesn't support this, remove ^LButton:: and ^RButton:: lines from Jump attack and Guard break sections.
  • 1 for equipment menu.
  • 2 for inventory menu.
  • 3 for player status menu.
  • 4 for message menu.
  • F1 to enable/disable the script.
  • The script only works when Dark Souls 2 is running and has focus.


Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Voice, SFX, Music (scales from 0 to 10)
Surround sound
7.1 surround sound supported
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Traditional Chinese
Fan translation, #1, #2.
Japan version only.
Brazilian Portuguese
Fan translation


Dark Souls II and Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin players cannot play together.[4]

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
Online play


No port information; you can edit this page to add it.
This game supports Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) for automatic port configuration.

VR support

3D modes State Notes
Nvidia 3D Vision
new Geo-11 3D Driver (RTX3000/4000 compatible)
Officially supported game, see official vorpx game list.

Issues fixed

Run the game at screen refresh rate

Fullscreen mode forces 60 Hz refresh rate even if your monitor supports higher than that.
Override refresh rate set by game[5]
  1. Download Chiri's resolution forcing tool.
  2. Extract d3d9.dll and d3dx.ini to the installation folder.
  3. Open d3dx.ini.
  4. Change refresh_rate=60 to desired hertz; e.g. refresh_rate=120.

Game volume decreases when summoning/being summoned

Disable communications activity sound reduction[citation needed]
  1. Open the Start screen/Start menu, type mmsys.cpl and press Enter.
  2. Go to the Communications tab.
  3. Choose Do nothing.
  4. Click OK to save your changes.

Mouse cursor reappear when using controller

If playing with a controller, the mouse cursor will always reappear in the middle of the screen, even if not in use or relocated.
Use AutoHideMouseCursor

Pink artifacts with Radeon GPUs

Make sure you are not forcing AF through AMD Catalyst Control Center[citation needed]
  • Open AMD CCC
  • Gaming --> 3D Application Settings --> Texture Filtering --> Anisotropic Filtering Mode
  • Make sure to set it to "Use application settings"
You can set the AF as high as you want in game without the artifacts reappearing.

Controller not working

Disconnect every non-XInput device[6]
Alternatively, place the blocker dinput8.dll in <path-to-game>\Game\

Xbox 360 Controller Freezes game

When using an original Xbox 360 controller, your game freezes when struck or fat-rolling (actions that activate rumble).
This may be caused by previously using MotionInJoy and even after the uninstall, your controller will still be labelled "MotionInJoy Virtual XInput Device for Windows"
Remove MotionInJoy remnants[7]
  1. Uninstall MotionInJoy.
  2. If the controller is still not detected, install the Xbox 360 Accessories Software.

Other information

Disable profanity filter

Not required for Chinese, Korean, or Russian setups.[citation needed]
Disable profanity filter[citation needed]
  1. Go to <path-to-game>\Game\NGWord\Chinese\.
  2. Copy win32OnlyNgWord.bin.
  3. Go to the preferred language folder and replace the content with copied file.


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9.0c 11 available in Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin.
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
64-bit available in Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin.


Middleware Notes
Physics Havok
Audio FMOD
Interface Scaleform
Cutscenes Windows Media Video
Multiplayer Steamworks

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) Vista SP2
Processor (CPU) AMD Phenom II X2 555 3.2 GHz
Intel Pentium Core 2 Duo E8500 3.17 GHz
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 12 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon HD 5870
Nvidia GeForce 9600 GT
DirectX 9.0c compatible
Sound (audio device) DirectX 9 sound device


  1. 1.0 1.1 File/folder structure within this directory reflects the path(s) listed for Windows and/or Steam game data (use Wine regedit to access Windows registry paths). Games with Steam Cloud support may store data in ~/.steam/steam/userdata/<user-id>/236430/ in addition to or instead of this directory. The app ID (236430) may differ in some cases. Treat backslashes as forward slashes. See the glossary page for details.