I'll make a better guide soon, but here you go for now:
1) First, buy Flame Toss from Freke's Apprentice, then get Intelligence to 14 and upgrade your Magic as high as possible. Work through 4-1 to get the Crescent Falchion. Then use your strongest range attack to kill the Vanguard (between Soul Arrow and Flame Toss, Soul Arrow should work better). That will get you some souls early on. Walk around and pick up the Uchigatana for later. You can either try to beat the rest of the stage for souls or just come back later. I would come back later.
2) Go to 3-1 and beat that stage so you can rescue Freke. With Flame Toss, the Mind Flayers shouldn't give you any trouble; they stagger easily to Fire. Same with the Fool's Idol.
3) Once Freke is in the Nexus, use the Fool's Idol's soul to learn Soul Ray. Upgrade your Intelligence to 18; this will allow you to carry all 3 of your spells, Fire Toss for fire-weak enemies, Soul Arrow for other enemies and Soul Ray for more powerful ones.
4) Go to 1-2. Run through to the bridge and retrieve the Winged Spear. It's the second item on the first part of the bridge. Climb the first tower, kill the two archers and pick up the Wooden Catalyst. Then cross the second part of the bridge. Make sure to bait the Dragon ocne before you run so he will kill all the Dreglings. When you get to the end, take cover behind the large wagon and kill the archers. Then keep going. When you get to the end of the third part of the bridge, stay as far back as possible so the Blue-eyed Knight won't see you and KEEP MOVING. Take out the archers while making sure the ones on top don't surprise you. When they're dead, make sure your MP is full and take on the Knight. Enough casts of Flame Toss will break his guard, but try to get in a shot before he brings his shield up the first time. When he's dead, repeat the process with the other Knight. Now the Tower Knight. He's pretty easy as a Royal…just run to his right when the battle starts and up the stairs. If you don't stop running, he'll have no way to hit you. Kill all the archers on the right side and take one's place. When the Tower Knight draws back to throw a spear, shoot him. With good timing, he will die quickly.
5) Spend your souls upgrading your stats so that you can wield the Winged Spear (13 Strength, 12 Dexterity). Extras go to Magic, but if Magic hits 20, increase Vitality and Endurance some instead. Then you can work through 2-1 without much trouble.
That's all I have for now. I'll try to update later.