Ketheric Thorm/Combat

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This page focuses on Ketheric Thorm's behavior during turn-based combat gameplay.

Attacks and abilities[edit | edit source]

Generic Necrotic.webp
D8 Necrotic.png 3d8 + 3 (6~27) Damage TypesNecrotic damage

Spawn a skeletal involucre. After 1 turn, the involucre explodes, dealing 3d8Damage TypesNecrotic damage and birthing a necromite.
DEX Save
 Range: 24 m /  ft
Generic Control.webp

Command your troops to prioritise attacking a specific foe.
 Range: 24 m / 80 ft
Divine Smite.webp
Normal weapon damage
+
D8 Radiant.png 2d8 (2~16) Damage TypesRadiant damage

Your weapon deals an additional 2d8Damage TypesRadiantDRS damage, increased by 1d8Damage TypesRadiant damage when attacking Fiends or Undead.
 Range: Normal weapon range
Blinding Smite.webp
Normal weapon damage
+
D8 Radiant.png 3d8 (3~24) Damage TypesRadiant damage

Evoke a heavenly flare and possibly Blind Blind your target
CON Save
 Range: Normal weapon range

Honour Mode[edit | edit source]

Generic Damage.webp
D8 Force.png 4d8 (4~32) Damage TypesForce damage

Launch a hammer of spectral force at a creature your minions are attacking.
DEX Save
 Range: 16 m / 52 ft

Allies[edit | edit source]

Ketheric will be accompanied by the following allies. Detailed information can be found on their respective pages.

Moonrise Towers Rooftop (Stage 1)[edit | edit source]

Mind Flayer Colony (Stage 2)[edit | edit source]

Encounters[edit | edit source]

Ketheric Thorm's actual battle has two individual stages, with some of the choices of the party coming into play in them.

Stage 1[edit | edit source]

The first part of the encounter with Ketheric takes place atop Moonrise Towers. Ketheric will be joined by Susdera, an acolyte of Myrkul, as well as eight necromites. Susdera will stand immediately before the party, while Ketheric will stand on the small balcony behind her, necromites flanking the stairs to it on both sides.

The necromites can be safely ignored if the party is equipped to have a high DC or has necrotic resistance, as they only cast Reach from Beyond, a low damage spell. However, both Ketheric and Susdera can summon more of them, so it's best to dispatch them with AoE attacks to avoid being overwhelmed.

Susdera herself may prove to be more of a direct threat at the start of combat given that she can cast Fireball and the party begins the fight grouped together by default. Silence or Darkness spells can neutralize her and give the party a chance to form up as needed. She's also able to cast "Bone Chill", preventing healing for one entire turn.

Ketheric may be a challenge if the party has no means of reliably damaging high AC enemies as he boasts a strong 22 AC. Additionally, though his Dexterity skill is relatively low, he has advantage on Dexterity Saving Throws via Ketheric's Shield. Spell with a dex save component can still be used should Ketheric use Reaper's Embrace, which would negate the advantage he has. Charming or putting him to Sleep is out of the question too given his Fey Ancestry.

Ketheric has relatively low Intellect, so spells with it as a saving throw are a good means of damaging him. Alternatively, players may lean more into the melee side of things and attempt to knock him prone, paralyze him, disarm him or otherwise. Blinding him or other means of granting the party Advantage are also means of getting hit in more reliably.

Ketheric's main source of damage will be through a combination of his melee attacks and Smites. As a Paladin type of enemy, his attacks can very quickly burst down party members if his hits all connect. Radiant damage resist, AC increasing spells and granting him Disadvantage are all methods to mitigate his burst damage somewhat. At the end of his turn, Ketheric will also order his necromites to focus fire using Deadly Orders and cap his turn by casting Incubate Death. Be careful of the AoE explosion of the summoned entity should it not be destroyed before transformation.

Ultimately, the best course of action is to burst Ketheric down as soon as possible through whatever means available. Should the player have spared Aylin, she will join the fight on the party's side and assist. She's capable enough of quickly dispatching Susdera through her own Smites and greatly help with Ketheric.

Once Ketheric's health drops to around 25%, he will interrupt the fight by summoning a gargantuan tentacle, kidnapping Aylin should she be present, and fleeing down the destroyed tower to the Mind Flayer Colony. If all of his allies are dead, combat ends immediately, otherwise they must be dispatched first. The party is then free to explore the surroundings and follow Ketheric when ready.

Stage 2[edit | edit source]

Phase 1[edit | edit source]

The next stage of the fight begins shortly after catching up to Ketheric in the Mind Flayer Colony. A Restoration Pod that grants the benefits of a Long Rest can be found to the right of the elevator that brings you to him. This is also an excellent opportunity to prepare for the coming fight by summoning additional help. If available, a set of Elementals can be particularly helpful in keeping the necromites and skeletal involucres under control; likewise Azers. The area also offers unlimited fodder for Animate Dead.

After the cutscene regarding Ketheric and his allies, players will enter a short conversation with Ketheric. During this dialogue, he can be talked down from fighting with a DC 18 Persuasion check, which will be available only if party members laid the conversational groundwork during the prior conversation on top of Moonrise Towers. On a success, Ketheric will kill himself and the battle will skip directly to phase two. Otherwise, a fight will ensue.

This time, Ketheric can be found on the raised, round platform before the party. To the far right, a Mindflayer can be found overlooking the battlefield, further in, four Intellect Devourers will quickly approach the party. Should she be alive, Aylin will be found trapped by spectral hands, granting Ketheric invulnerability once more. On the other side of the room, to the left, four necromites will sling spells down at the party.

Ideally the party should split in three: one to deal with the Mindflayer and help Aylin if alive, one to keep Ketheric occupied, and one to deal with the Necromites. Dispatching the Mindflayer quickly will help the party keep control of the battle as otherwise it will attempt to stun them. It will also grant the party member a vantage point to fight against the intellect devourers and Ketheric. Dispatching the intellect devourers shouldn't be too difficult, most AoE spells should work, and they are not too troublesome either, though they could prove an annoyance should they threaten a ranged unit.

Aylin can be freed from her prison via the Help action. Once free, she will assist the party in the fight, usually by charging directly at Ketheric. The Necromites on the left platform are not too dangerous, however, they should be eliminated before the next phase, otherwise Ketheric will have a great power spike. One party member with an AoE spell should suffice, leaving them up there will also provide another vantage point for the rest of the fight.

Finally, dealing with Ketheric himself should be relatively similar to his first encounter. Beware that much like any other NPCs, he will quickly deplete all his spell slots using Smite on each of his attacks, so any form of mitigating this burst damage is good, such as an Elixir of Radiant Resistance. Like in the previous fight, Ketheric can order his party to focus using Deadly Orders and raise new necromites using Incubate Death.

As soon as Ketheric is defeated, the next and final phase of the fight begins. It's recommended to clear all of Ketheric's allies before moving on to the next phase of the fight.

Phase 2[edit | edit source]

The last phase of the fight begins as soon as Ketheric is killed, and this time the party faces the Apostle of Myrkul. Twisted by necrotic magic, the Apostle takes up the entire space in the center of the room, summoning necromites as the fight begins.

During this phase, up to four additional Skeletal Involucres will be created at random points at the edges of the battle space at the end of every turn. Since the involucres are resistant to piercing damage but vulnerable to bludgeoning damage, party members with access to highly mobile summons that have powerful melee attacks, such as Elementals, will find themselves in good shape on this front.

The Apostle hits hard, hits often, and has a large health pool. However, the battle is manageable provided you take care of the necromites and keep the Apostle occupied. The main gimmick of the fight is that the Apostle will sacrifice a necromite in order to gain the Finger of Death Finger of Death spell. Should the necromites be dealt with (or the Apostle itself prevented from consuming them), then this spell won't be an issue.

The Apostle's presence also applies Bone Chilled Bone Chilled to anyone near it on the platform, which prevents healing damaged party members. Wounded party members can use Disengage to leave the platform (or move to a few small areas at the very edge of it outside the Bone Chill aura), and downed ones can be shoved off by others if necessary.

Party members having trouble hitting the Apostle can turn to area-of-effect attacks, such as spells or smokepowder bombs.

Despite the large size of the Apostle, it's still susceptible to most regular conditions, such as weakened or blinded, and can be made wet using Create Water. The effect from Arrows of Ilmater that prevents healing and similar effects that prevent healing are extremely effective. Likewise, although it has a difficult-to-overcome saving throw versus many more severe conditions, casting Darkness Darkness on it will blind the Apostle thereby helping any melee fighters prevent some of the damage and combos, in particular removing its ability to opportunity strike.

The Apostle's Reaper's Scythe does respectable damage and also knocks foes back, potentially off of the platform itself. Positioning all melee units with the spikes of the arena at their back will prevent them from being knocked off the platform this way. Alternatively, the Apostle can be disarmed of its scythe, removing the threat entirely.

Once the Apostle is defeated, Ketheric will finally die for good, allowing the party to retrieve his Netherstone, and proceed to Baldur's Gate.

Achievements[edit | edit source]

A-No Free Lunches.jpg

No Free Lunches
Defeat the Apostle of Myrkul before it consumes any necromites.


Notes[edit | edit source]

  • If Gale uses his Netherese Orb Blast during the second encounter with Ketheric, the game can end at this very moment, allowing the party to kill Ketheric Thorm, Enver Gortash, Orin the Red and the Absolute in one fell swoop. This only works during the cutscene; using the ability outside of the cutscene will trigger a Game Over as usual.
  • Ketheric has Necrotic resistance and Poison immunity on Tactician difficulty.
  • Susdera and the Necromites can be slain without angering Ketheric by reaching the roof of Moonrise Towers before Aylin is met and remaining far away from Ketheric. This makes it possible to leave him with no allies when the party finally confronts him. Susdera is especially vulnerable to being pushed or displaced in some manner due to her proximity to a lethal drop.
  • If you are an Oathbreaker Paladin above level 11, it is possible to use Control Undead on the Apostle of Myrkul and have him fight for you against his minions. His movement speed of 0 means he will not follow you anywhere to fight anyone out of his range. You could then attack him again and kill him while he remains friendly and won't fight back. This death however will not trigger the cut scene where he turns back to Kethric or the Dream Visitor returns. Looting the body of the Apostle will give you a supply pack, a letter from Isobel, Kethric's Warhammer, and Kethric's Sheild, but not the Reaper's Scythe, Reaper's Embrace or Kethric's Netherstone. This option thus prevents the game from progressing to Act 3.