How to Play the Dishonored Series in Order

Play DIshonored with honor.

by JB Cachila
Image: Arkane Studios

Dishonored is an award-winning series of stealth action games developed by Arkane Studios and published by Bethesda. While it only has a few standalone releases, it is considered one of the best in the genre. Today we’ll be discussing how to play the Dishonored series in order so you can get a better understanding of the game’s lore.

What is Dishonored About?

Dishonored focuses on the adventures of three main characters in the steampunk-inspired world of Dunwall and beyond: Corvo Attano, a royal guard member; Emily Kaldwin, an empress; and Billie Lurk, an assassin. The first two main characters are involved in a plot to overthrow the leadership of Dunwall, while the third is on a mission to eliminate a certain mysterious character who is important to the game.

While the series’ main entries center on the main protagonists’ activities in the Empire of Isles, some DLCs put the spotlight on other characters in order to flesh out the franchise’s entire narrative.

How to Play the Dishonored Series in the Correct Order

It’s best to play the Dishonored series chronologically in order to enjoy the game’s full story. For this article, we will only include entries and DLCs essential to understanding the lore.


Image: Arkane Studios

Start by playing the original title. This entry focuses on Corvo, who sets out on a journey to clear his name after he was framed for the assassination of Empress Jessamine Kaldwin and the kidnapping of her (and his) daughter Emily.

Corvo receives some help from The Outsider, a mysterious entity that grants him supernatural powers to use against the villainous Lord Regent. The latter is the one behind the assassination and kidnapping.

The Knife of Dunwall (DLC)

Image: Arkane Studios

This DLC expands on the first entry’s storytelling by focusing on Daud, the leader of the Assassins. He is the one who killed Empress Jessamine. This is only the first part of Daud’s story, however. Players will explore new areas in Dunwall in addition to familiar places.

The Brigmore Witches (DLC)

Image: Arkane Studios

The Brigmore Witches DLC brings Daud’s story to a close. Here, the assassin gets various groups to help him as he continues his pursuit of a notorious witch. Players will be able to carry over their chaos levels, powers, weapons, and upgrades from the previous DLC: The Knife of Dunwall.

Dishonored 2

Image: Arkane Studios

Dishonored 2 is set 15 years after the events of the first game. Players can play as Corvo or his daughter Emily, who is on her way to becoming the rightful Empress of the Empire of the Isles. Dishonored 2 builds on the first game and includes the neighboring city Karnaca, where Corvo or Emily must travel to fight the forces attempting to take the throne from her.

Dishonored: Death of the Outsider

Image: Arkane Studios

Originally meant to be released as a DLC for Dishonored 2, Dishonored: Death of the Outsider (2017) became a standalone title featuring a different protagonist and a different story.

Here, players assume the role of Billie Lurk, Daud’s former assistant. She reunites with her former mentor in an attempt to get his help in killing The Outsider—or actually helping the latter.

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