Access to Lower New Londo is granted by turning the lever in the Spiral Staircase Tower in Upper New Londo to open the seal and drain the flood waters into the Valley of Drakes. With the water lowered, there are a number of ways to access the area:
- The large door that you opened with the seal lever leads to the Valley of Drakes, providing means to access Lower New Londo from there - or indeed vice verse.
- The two elevators (one in the first tower and the other near to the seal lever) are now both operational after lowering the water level.
- Back at the very start of the area, after crossing the two wooden bridges, go to the back on the right to find a place where you can drop down to the lower area - this is the easiest way to get to Lower New Londo from Firelink Shrine in the likely event of your death.
The lift near the seal lever brings you down to Lower New Londo very near to the now open seal door that leads to the Valley of Drakes. Shortly after arriving at the bottom of the lift you will be attacked by a new enemy that was previously kept trapped by the flood waters - the Darkwraith Knight. These are the standard enemy of Lower New Londo and you will encounter several of them as you explore. Darkwraith Knights are humanoid and when not attacking they are not the fastest movers and so can be easily backstabbed if you strafe around the back of them. Avoid going toe-to-toe unless you have good armor and poise as they can power through your stamina with either their two-hit power combo or four-hit regular combo. Also, back-off if you see their fist glowing white as this is a charge-up for a grab attack that will not only hurt greatly but can also steal Humanity you may be storing.
After defeating the first one just outside the elevator, you'll see where the Seal used to be, it's now a doorway leading to the Valley of Drakes guarded by a few Drakes who won't see you unless you get close. There is also a wooden structure up some stairs on a small elevation behind you to your left, if facing the Drakes. In this structure you'll find a Soul item and another Darkwraith to dispose of. Beyond that you'll find a fog gate to enter the lower floor of one the towers you explored earlier in Upper New Londo.
In here there's three Darkwraiths, the first being immediately on your left as you walk inside. The next one is further inside to the left and he has his back to you, so you should take the opportunity to backstab him if you can. You may then notice, through the darkness, a large slime-like monster coming from the right side of the building - this is the Mass of Souls. They are big, tough and can spawn Wisps. If you haven't encountered a Wisp yet then note that they are floating disembodied heads that explode in proximity to you, so when you see one starting to shake and glow red, that's your cue to back-off as quickly as possible before it explodes. Before you fight the Mass of Souls, try to run around the building and attract the attention of the Wisps and the remaining Darkwraith in the vicinity and then lead them away so you can safely take them out. With them gone, the Mass of Souls will be much easier to deal with. You should simply manoeuvre behind or beside it to attack, as all of it's melee attacks are forward facing. Keep hacking away until it expires and it will not respawn.
With everyone gone now you can freely explore the building and pick up any items. So go to the right side of the building, past all the wooden stalls, to find a doorway on the right at the end. Go up the stairs in here and you'll be up on the next floor with a path ahead and one to the right. Follow the path straight ahead to find an item on a ledge (Soul of a Brave Warrior) and then take the path to the right. Keep following the path along the ledges and up the stairs and you will eventually find a chest with the Very Large Ember inside - this can be given to Anrdei in Undead Parish to ascend weapons to +15 on the standard upgrade path. Now make your way back down and out the door on the other side of the building from where you came in and you'll now be outside again.
Note: This outdoor area between the first and second tower is where you'll drop into when you come from Firelink Shrine, outlined above in option 3 in the ways to access Lower New Londo. So, should you die after lowering the water, which is almost a certainty, then ensure you know how to access this shortcut in order to limit your frustration, as this is the quickest way to get back to where you were.
Descend into the shallow pool of water and turn left. Go straight forward to find dry land and another Darkwraith in the resulting ruins. Close by you should be able to see a blocked up archway and if you hit it then it'll reveal a secret passage across a thin walkway, but don't venture across the walkway as there's another Darkwraith Knight waiting on the other side. Lure him with an arrow and once he's disposed of then cross the walkway to find a a Titanite Chunk. Nearby the arch leading to this secret you should see the stairs leading up to the second tower, but we'll explore the rest of this outside area first.
Look to the left of the stairs to find a corpse draped over a well holding six Cracked Red Eye Orbs and take a right from there to find another little area down some stairs with another Darkwraith. From here you'll be able to see the area around the seal door again and allows to you access it again via a short drop. Now go back and climb the stairs toward the second tower's entrance, but before you go in, have a look to the right once you climb the stairs and walk along the ledge of the building around to the right to find a corpse with a Soul of a Proud Knight in the open.
Before entering the building, please note that there are two Ghosts that will come through the left wall - it's adviseable to take them out before going inside. Once they're gone, proceed inside to find another two Darkwraiths and another Mass of Souls to condend with. Again, luring the Darkwraiths away from the Mass of Souls so they can be dealt with separately is the ideal strategy. Ensure the Wisps that it produces are also all exploded and once that's done then take care of the Mass of Souls ( Tip: If you get it's attention and get it to follow you out the door you came in then it will get stuck in the door, making for an easy ranged kill) There is a third Ghost who will also come out of the left wall once you venture in far enough, so ensure you're prepared. In the corner you'll find a chest containing a Titanite Chunk.
Out the other door here you'll immediately see the fog gate leading to The Abyss. Take a right first though and you'll find yet another Darkwraith lurking in the darkness around the corner. If you look around the large piller close-by you'll find a summon sign for Witch Beatrice if you're in human form and she'll be of great assistance during the boss fight ahead. ( Note: Beatrice's summon sign will only appear if you already inlisted her help for the Moonlight Butterfly boss in Darkroot Garden).
Before you head through the fog gate, ensure you have the Covenant of Artorias ring. If you don't have it then be aware that only a deathly black demise awaits you on the other side of this fog gate, in the form of The Abyss. You won't be able to exit once you go through, so ensure you have obtained this ring by defeating The Great Grey Wolf Sif in Darkroot Garden before you go in. If you already have the ring though, then equip it and head through the fog gate.
Note & Tips
- There is a "Soul of a Proud Knight" in Ingward's tower. It's around the opposite side from where you come in. Before entering the Banshee room with the ladder, it's a 3rd doorway (across from where you enter this junction room).