In Dark Souls 2, the order in which the DLC becomes available doesn't seem to match up with the difficulty of the areas it appears in.
For example, most players (speedrunners and regular players alike) tend to avoid most of the areas until end-game, or even until NG+.
What is the actual difficulty level of the DLC's? (In terms of main storyline difficulty vs DLC area difficulty)
EDIT: With the addition of the new ending, and the additional storyline content, the DLC has now effectively tied itself back into the main storyline. So, taking this into account, is there a particular order the DLC should be played, taking into account the difference in difficulty and the storyline content?