How to Find the Diablo III Secret Cow Level - Whimsyshire Land of the Unicorns

Note This guide will help you gather all the materials to craft the Staff of Herding -- required to gain access to Whimsyshire.


Following the tradition of Diablo II, Blizzard Entertainment added the Secret Cow Level to Diablo III. In order to get access to the Secret Cow Level, the player has to acquire several rare items scattered throughout Sanctuary and pay a lot of hundred thousands of gold for some of the items.

In addition, the player has to create a staff from Plans: Staff of Herding with the help of Haedrig Eamon (Blacksmith).

The first step is to find the items required to build the Staff of Herding. Check out the screenshots and step-by-step guide for each item by clicking the item names below.

Act I

Act II

Act III

Act IV

After you gather all these items, you can now create the Staff of Herding at the Blacksmith Haedrig Eamon.

Secret Cow Level - Wimsyshire

After creating the Staff of Herding, leave the game. Click the Change Quest button located at the character screen.

Make sure the Normal Difficulty is set at the bottom-left. Otherwise use the dropdown menu.

Choose Act I chapter 3: A Shattered Crown. Select Begin Quest (beneath A Shattered Crown).

Start the game. Your character spawns at the New Tristram. Go to the waypoint and teleport to Old Tristram.

Remember that big hole on the ground with a weird ilumination located between Old Tristram and New Tristram? That's where you must go. Nearby is the skeleton of a cow. With the Staff of Herding in your inventory, the Ghost of the Cow King will hover above the bones. A yellow exclamation mark appears on his head. Click him to start the dialogue.

Check out the last step of how to access the Secret Cow Level: Whimsyshire:

Black Mushroom

At the character screen, click Change Quest.

Under ACT I Chapter 4: Reign of the Black King, select Begin Quest. Click Select Game.

Start the Game. At the Waypoint, select Cathedral Gardens.

Don't enter the entrance next to the Cathedral Gardens waypoint (That's Leoric's Passage). You have to walk west of the Cathedral Gardens waypoint, and past the gates you will see the Tristram Cathedral's front door. Break the door. Enter the Cathedral Level 1 entrance.

The Black Mushroom is an item that spawns randomly in the Tristram Cathedral Level 1 inside one of those big rooms with two exits -- as illustrated below.

There's a fissure on the ground where the Black Mushroom grows. Hover your mouse over the stack of mushrooms and click it to loot the Black Mushroom.

If you don't find the Black Mushroom, leave the game and click Resume Game. A random map of the Cathedral Level 1 will spawn. Rinse and repeat until you find the Black Mushroom. The room you are looking for looks like this in the mini-map.

Note: I haven't confirmed this in Diablo III Retail: In beta, the Black Mushroom used to drop from the Cauldron located within the cellar at Adria's Hut.

Leoric's Shinbone

The Leoric's Shinbone is by far the easiest item to find for the Secret Cow Level. First, at the character screen, click Change Quest.

Under ACT I Chapter 9: The Imprisoned Angel, select The Cursed Hold.

Click Select Game. Walk to the New Tristram Waypoint and search under The Highlands. Select Leoric's Manor.

You will spawn at the back of the Leoric's Manor. Walk into the ritual room and move toward the front of Leoric's Manor. The room to the east has a fireplace with a big painting of Leoric's face. It takes a few random games to see the Burnt Logs inside the fireplace.

Click the Burnt Logs to loot the Leoric's Shinbone. It's one of the materials needed to get access to the Secret Cow Level in Diablo III.

This is the Leoric's Shibone Tooltip.

Liquid Rainbow

At the character screen, click Change Quest.

Under ACT II Chapter 6: Betrayer of the Horadrim, select The Forgotten Ruins. Click Select Game.

Start the Game. Now walk to the New Tristram waypoint, and under Dahlgur Oasis, select Path to the Oasis.

You don't have to walk the entire map in search of this item. Follow all the southern wall border up to the north east corner. There's a small peninsula full of water that can appear up to three times throughout the wall border in a single map. Take a look at the mini-map below to see the shape of the peninsula.

The Mysterious Cave doesn't have an icon on the map. It's enabled and opened by an NPC. This NPC rarely appears in the Dahlgur Oasis. He is random. You should try running different games until the right random map appears. The NPC has no name at first. It's easy to miss if you aren't looking sharp. The screenshot below shows you how he looks like. He looks sick (sobbing position).

After killing the nearby demons, the NPC will stand up normal and a silver exclamation mark will hover above his head to talk to him.

After clicking him, you will now see his name. The NPC is named Zaven the Alchemist (Merchant). He says: "I meant to explore that cave over there for trinkets, but after that --- it's all yours."

At that point, Zaven the Alchemist walks toward the sealed door behind him, and the Mysterious Cave becomes enabled. Check out if the merchant has something you like. He will have a different Rare (Yellow) item every time you manage to find this random NPC. Enter the Mysterious Cave.

The Mysterious Cave has two levels. What you are looking for is a chest named Mysterious Chest. There's a catch, however. Zaven the Alchemist appears in a random Dahlgur Oasis map to enable the Mysterious Cave for you -- but you won't find a Mysterious Chest in all the random Mysterious Cave. It might require several trials. I ran about 10-15 Dahlgur Oasis maps. Zaven the Alchemist spawned two times, and only one had a Mysterious Chest. I'd consider myself lucky.

Inside the Mysterious Chest, you will -- again -- randomly find or not find a Liquid Rainbow.

Wirt's Bell

At the character screen, click Change Quest.

Under ACT II Chapter 7: Blood and Sand, select Begin Quest. Click Select Game.

Your character will spawn at the Hidden Camp. Don't use the Waypoint. Instead, walk to the northeast entrance to the Caldeum Bazaar as shown in the mini-map below.

Locate the small water fountain to the left. Next to the water fountain you will see a small girl, who immediately says ...

Squirt the Peddler: "I may look small, but I'll hurt you if you try to steal from me."

She's a merchant. Click the Miscellaneous tab (with the red potion icon). At the bottom you should see the Wirt's Bell item for 100,000 gold. (Looks like the girl is the one trying to steal from you ...)

Squirt the Peddler might not have the item for sale all the time. It's random. You might have to leave the game, and resume. Rinse and repeat until she has the Wirt's Bell on sale.

Bonus: Once you buy the Wirt's Bell, an achievement appears onscreen titled: "Wirt's Case Scenario".

Gibbering Gemstone

At the character screen, click Change Quest.

Under ACT III Chapter 5: Machines of War, select Destroy Ballistae. Click Select Game.

Click Start Game. Your character spawns at Bastion's Keep Stronghold. Go to the waypoint; and under Field's of Slaughter, select The Bridge of Korsikk.

You don't need to go past the bridge at all. Roam around the Field's of Slaughter. Usually to the northwest or far east side of the Field's of Slaughter are small mounds. One out of several random Field's of Slaughter maps contains a rare cave named Caverns of Frost Level 1.

On top of the random map containing the Caverns of Frost, there's a random chance you might find a rare (yellow) Lacuni named Chiltara.

Chiltara has a random chance to drop the Gibbering Gemstone.

Plans: Staff of Herding

Assuming you have already beaten Diablo III Nightmare, Hell or Inferno already, you might already have looted the Plans: Staff of Herding from Izual in Act IV. This item is the hardest to find, so make sure to follow these steps.

Go to the Blacksmith Haedrig Eamon. Under the weapons tab, scroll down to the Staves.

Check out if the Staff of Herding is already there. It will mention the material requirements:

The screenshot below shows all 5 materials at the Blacksmith Haedrig Eamon's weapon recipes UI.

If the Staff of Herding isn't within the Blacksmith's recipes, prepare for a lot of runs in Act IV Normal Difficulty. It took me approximately 20-30 Izual kills to loot the Plans: Staff of Herding.

The end result when building the Staff of Herding. Equip it. Be careful where you place your weapons in case you accidentally sell or --worse case scenario -- disenchant.

The Staff of Herding cannot be sold. It's not consumed either. You can use it once and again, and again by selecting the Shattered Crown quest in Act I, and starting a new game. Learn more at the Cow Level: Wimsyshire section.

Farming Izual (Normal Difficulty)

At the character screen, click Change Quest.

Make sure Normal Difficulty is selected at the bottom-left corner. Under ACT IV Chapter 4: Prime Evil, select Begin Quest. Click Select Game.

Your character will spawn at the Bastion's Keep Stronghold. Go to the waypoint, and under Silver Spire, select The Crystal Colonnade.

At your level, Normal Difficulty demons don't even tickle. Ignore them and run through toward Izual.

You might have to run for about three minutes going through the Crystal Colonnade, Gateway to the Silver Spire, and The Silver Spire Level 1 -- searching for the Great Span portal.

You will find Izual at the Great Span. Kill him. There's a low random chance for the Plans: Staff of Herding to drop from Izual (Normal difficulty).

Secret Cow Level - Whimsyshire

After creating the Staff of Herding, leave the game. Click the Change Quest button located at the character screen.

Make sure to the Normal Difficulty is set at the bottom-left. Otherwise use the dropdown menu.

Choose Act I chapter 3: A Shattered Crown. Select Begin Quest (beneath A Shattered Crown).

Start the game. Your character spawns at the New Tristram. Go to the waypoint and teleport to Old Tristram.

Remember that big hole on the ground with a weird illumination flaring up in beta? -- it's located between Old Tristram and New Tristram. Not too far from Old Tristram. That's where you must go.

Near the big hole you will find the bones of a cow. With the Staff of Herding in your inventory, when you approach these bones -- the Ghost of the Cow King will automatically spawn and hover above the bones with a yellow exclamation mark to start a quest.

  • Ghost of the Cow King: We see you have brought the item. That is good. We are udderly pleased.

  • Character: I studied all of the holy texts for years. There was nothing about cows with speech. Yet you ... are a cow.

  • Ghost of the Cow King: And you are a stinking bag of flesh with no fur. Haha, touche! This is no time to be silly. The level of sparkling happiness and rainbows awaits you!

  • Character: You mean the cow level?

  • Ghost of the Cow King: No. There is no cow level. Now, moo---oh, uh, excuse me. Move along!

Afterwards, the big hole on the ground will flash rainbow beams. Hover your mouse cursor over the hole and it will display the name: Whimsyshire.

Enter the dungeon.

Prepare to be overwhelmed by Chubby Pink Unicorns, Twinkleroot (flowers) and ... Pink Carebears -- err, I mean -- Cuddle Bears.

After clearing the dungeon and selling all the items dropped in Whimsyshire -- I counted 13,500 gold in revenue (Normal difficulty).

Tip: The player gains a special buff in Whimsyshire. Seems the buff stacks up to 5 times. I'd kill all the mobs, and later loot all the Happy Clouds, Mushrooms, Diablo Piñata, and Pot O'Gold -- just in case.

  • Nephalem Valor: Defeating an Elite pack has increased your Magic Find and Gold Find. This effect ends if you change skills. 30 minutes left.

Tip: The Staff of Herding cannot be sold. It's not consumed. Thus, you can leave the game, start a new game and do Whimsyshire all over again as many times as you wish.

Tip: In a random Whimsyshire level you might find a Diablo piñata hanging off a tree. It will drop items of different qualities, gold and gems. Hmm, gems.

Tip: Click the Happy Clouds. They drop a lot of loot. You might also find Pot O'gold which drop lots of loot too.

Achievements

Entering Whimsyshire will automatically trigger an achievement: In the Land of Killer Unicorns.

This is the Banner Pattern Reward unlocked by this achievement:

This is the new sigil unlocked by this achievement:

Upgrading the Staff of Herding

After you beat the Whimsyshire (Normal Difficulty), leave the game.

Change the Quest. Choose the Nightmare difficulty. Then, under Act IV -- select The Prime Evil: Enter the Crystal Arch option.

Your character spawns at the Bastion's Keep Stronghold. Walk to the southeastern corner of the room. You will find Gorell the Quartermaster next to the Followers (the Templar, Enchantress and Scoundrel).

Gorell the Quartermaster should have a new item for sale: Plan: Nightmarish Staff of Herding (Note: You must have defeated Diablo (Nightmare difficulty) previously to unlock this item at the quartermaster). The item only costs 1 gold.

Go to Blacksmith Haedrig Eamon. Choose craft. Click the Plan: Nightmarish Staff of Herding in your inventory. The Blacksmith will learn the recipe. You can find it under the Weapons tab, under Staves. You require the Staff of Herding and 200,000 gold to upgrade it into Nightmarish Staff of Herding.

Leave the game. Create a new game in ACT 1: The Shattered Crown. Use the waypoint to teleport to Old Tristram and approach the Ghost of the Cow King to enter Whimsyshire (Nightmare difficulty) and defeat the secret level.

Rinse and repeat for Hell and Inferno difficulty.

Update: Once you reach the ACT IV: Prime Evil chapter (Inferno) go to the Bastion's Keep Stronghold. You don't need to kill Diablo (Inferno) to get access to the Plans: Infernal Staff of Herding recipe. Talk to the Quartermaster Gorell. He will have the Plans: Staff of Herding recipe. You need the Hellish Staff of Herding and 1 million gold to craft the Infernal Staff of Herding at Eamon Haedrig (Blacksmith). Get ready to get spanked in Whimsyshire (Inferno) and to earn some good gold running people who wants to farm it with your aid.