You Died: A Story Told in Vagrant Symbols, Pages 10, 20, 30

Most pages in You Died: The Dark Souls Companion feature a symbol at the top. It’s black when the page is white, it’s white when the page is black/red.

But the symbols on page 10 and 30 are red. The only red ones in the whole book. Coincidence? They must be linked somehow. The red item bag (page 10) never re-appears in the book, but the red Vagrant (page 30) does re-appear: Inbetween the other two symbols on page 20 there’s a white Vagrant.

If you’re familiar with Vagrant spawning in Dark Souls, you know that they spawn on the condition that a player failed to pick up an item. This item is transferred into other player’s worlds and then, later, turns into a Vagrant.

So these three symbols tell a kind of mini story arc:

1. Player fails to pick up item. Item becomes drift item (the item bag symbol, page 10) in another player’s world.
2. Nobody picks up the drift item so it becomes a good vagrant (the white vagrant symbol, page 20).
3. Nobody kills the good vagrant so it upgrades into a more powerful black phantom version (red vagrant symbol, page 30)

And the reason these symbols are 10 pages apart: The drift item needs to pass 10 player’s worlds without being picked up for it to become a good Vagrant. And a good Vagrant needs to pass 10 player’s worlds without being killed to upgrade into the black phantom Vagrant.

This little story arc ties in nicely with the new chapter that was created exclusively for the hardcover edition of You Died: Vagrant Story.

It’s an interview with Patrick “Illusory Wall” Todd (Twitter, Tumblr) who did extensive research on the topic of Vagrants and is the reason we even know the conditions of their spawning mechanics.
Taking a look at his Patreon we can see a familiar sequence of symbols.

Jason Killingsworth (author and publisher) and Andrew P Hind (art director) actually talk about this easter egg in the podcast Don’t Give Up Skeleton.