The Pale Elf
Objectives[edit | edit source]
Objectives and journal entries may vary pending player decisions.
- We met a strange elf who had also been infected with a parasite. He was hostile at first, but agreed to join us when he learned we were infected too.
- Astarion is a vampire! We woke up last night and saw him bent over one of us - drinking their blood. We let him drink his fill to regain his strength.
- Astarion is a vampire! We woke up last night and saw him bent over one of us - drinking their blood. We warned him never to do it again.
- Astarion is a vampire! We woke up last night and saw him bent over one of us - drinking their blood. We had no choice but to attack him.
- We told Astarion that he couldn't feed on innocents - but enemies were fair game.
- We told Astarion he could only feed on animals - intelligent creatures are off-limits.
- We learned that Astarion was murdered by a Gur nomad long ago. The vampire lord Cazador came to his aid and made him a vampire spawn.
- We learned that Astarion was a slave to the Szarr family. He couldn't refuse orders from them - and believes that might still be the case.
- Astarion suspects that the parasite may have negated some of the downsides of being a vampire spawn. Perhaps his master has no power over him anymore.
- We learned that Astarion might be a vampire! A monster hunter named Gandrel is looking for him.
- We fought a monster hunter who was looking for Astarion.
- Astarion killed a monster hunter who had been looking for him.
- We met a monster hunter who is looking for Astarion. We told the hunter where we were camping.
- We met a monster hunter who is looking for Astarion. We kept our camp's location a secret.
- We learned that the monster hunter was serving someone named Ulma.
- Astarion told us that he suspects the monster hunter is serving his master Cazador.
- Romance: After spending the night with Astarion, we learned that he has some kind of poem carved into his back. Cazador did this to him - but why?
- Romance: After spending the night with Astarion, we learned that he has a poem written in Infernal carved into his back. Cazador did this to him - but why?
Walkthrough[edit | edit source]
Note that Astarion’s story spans the entire game, and has spoilers for all Acts of the game.
Recruiting Astarion[edit | edit source]
Astarion (X:174, Y:287) can be recruited immediately after the Prologue by moving northwest of the Nautiloid wreckage to the Ravaged Beach. Astarion is by the cliffs and shouts out to the party for help as they approach. He states that one of the "brain things" is nearby and he needs help killing it. The party can either agree to help him, to which they'll realize it was just a boar, or turn away and tell him he seems strong enough to handle himself. Either way - Astarion pulls a knife on the player. If a Perception check is failed, then Astarion sneaks behind the player and pulls them to the ground, holding a knife to them. If the Perception check is passed, then he simply holds the knife out in a defensive stance.
He asks the player what they did to him and what they know, saying he saw them walking around freely on the Nautiloid. The player can attempt to deny that they are a servant of the Mind Flayers, but ultimately the tadpole power connects the group and clears up the misunderstanding. Astarion puts his knife away and apologizes for nearly gutting the player. The player can either leave Astarion on the beach or offer for him to join them, as they have a better chance of finding a cure for their tadpoles as a group. If offered, Astarion happily joins the party.
Astarion's Secret[edit | edit source]
During a Long Rest at camp, the player can notice Astarion can slinking off somewhere in the night, though is unable to question him on this. After this event occurs, a boar drained of blood appears before the bridge to the Blighted Village. With a Medicine check (DC 10), the party can learn it has two puncture wounds in its neck. If Astarion is in the party, he can be Persuaded or Intimidated (DC 10) into revealing that it seems to have been drained of blood by a vampire. Astarion apparently didn't want to say anything as he didn't want to frighten the party.
There are two ways that the party can learn about Astarion's condition. The first is a scene at Long Rest where the player awakens to Astarion crouching over them. He comes clean that he's a vampire spawn who is weak from hunger, and asks the player if he could drink some of their blood. The player can either hear him out, or drive a stake through his chest. If the player hears him out, they can either agree to let him drink their blood or tell him to go elsewhere. If they agree to it, Astarion has to either be Persuaded (DC 5) or shoved off with a Strength check (DC 7) to get him to stop. Letting him drink a little more instead requires a more difficult Persuasion check (DC 15). If this check is failed, the player dies and must be resurrected. Astarion pretends not to know what happened, but can be confronted by the player after the fact.
The second way the party can learn about Astarion is by adventuring with him and gaining his approval while not triggering the blood drinking scene. Eventually, when the player talks to Astarion in the party, he reveals he has something to share that hasn't come up naturally. He's a vampire. The player can either act shocked or say they knew all along.
Once Astarion's secret has been revealed, he gains the Bite ability. The player can tell Astarion he can drink on their enemies or stick to only non-intelligent creatures. Through dialogue at camp or in the party, Astarion can reveal more about past, such as information about his master, Cazador Szarr, who tormented him for two hundred years. Astarion was one of seven spawn created by Cazador, and Cazador insisted on calling them a 'family.' Thanks to the mind flayers, he's been lost, granting him his freedom. Even better, the tadpole has stopped his vampire weaknesses, such as being able to walk in the sun or enter homes uninvited.
The Monster Hunter[edit | edit source]
A Gur monster hunter named Gandrel is in the Sunlit Wetlands/Putrid Bog. If he's spoken to, he reveals that he's looking for a vampire spawn in the area and he may have to make a deal with the local hag to find him. There are several possibilities for how the conversation can pan out:
- The party can speak to Gandrel without learning more about the vampire spawn he hunts, and part ways with him.
- The party can persuade Gandrel to tell them more about his quarry through a Persuasion check (DC 15), to which he reveals his quarry is Astarion. The party can respond in various ways:
- Tell him Astarion is not a vampire, and reveal their camp location.
- Tell him Astarion is not a vampire, and refuse to give up their camp location.
- Meet with Gandrel after knowing Astarion is a vampire, and kill him. If Astarion is in the party, they can have him do the honours.
- Bring Astarion to Gandrel, who knocks him out and takes him away.
If Gandrel knows the camp's location, he, unsurprisingly, shows up to take Astarion away, losing him forever as a party member. Otherwise, Astarion remains unscathed. Astarion greatly approves of being able to kill Gandrel, and expresses his concern about his former master sending hunters after him. If Speak with Dead is used on Gandrel's corpse, the party can learn he was sent by someone named Ulma.
Astarion's Scars[edit | edit source]
Players who romance Astarion can learn more about Astarion's scars by having a tryst in the forest with him. Astarion can propose this through speaking with him in the party/at camp after gaining high approval, or he can propose it during the Goblin/Tiefling party if Save the Refugees was fully completed. After a night of passion, the player wakes up to see Astarion bathing in the sun with his back to them, showing strange scars. Asking about them, Astarion explains they're supposedly a poem carved into his flesh by Cazador in a single night, with heavy revisions. He refuses to elaborate more.
If the player has high approval with Astarion, a scene occurs at camp during a Long Rest. Both romanced and unromanced players can witness this scene, although romanced players can see this as early as Act One, while it triggers in Act Two for unromanced players. Astarion is shirtless and tracing his fingers against his back, while holding a mirror. The player can ask him what he's doing, to which he can be coaxed to explain that he's trying to figure out what the words on his back mean. With an Arcana check (DC 10), the player can attempt to decipher the runes and ascertain that they are Infernal in nature. Characters who can understand Infernal, such as tieflings, can read the sigils as a bunch of jumbled Infernal legalese that's part of a contract.
Players who do not have a high enough approval with Astarion won't be able to ask about his scars, but he can still have a scene in camp where he is eager to speak to Raphael again. He isn't willing to elaborate on why but asks the party to look out for him.
A Deal with Raphael[edit | edit source]
There are two places that Astarion can negotiate a deal with Raphael. The first is the Last Light Inn, where Raphael is playing a game of lanceboard with Mol near the staircase. Raphael only remains until the player triggers Resolve the Abduction by speaking to Isobel on the upper floor. After this, he leaves. If Raphael is spoken to with Astarion in the party, Astarion asks him about his scars and Raphael says he'll think up an agreement in time before disappearing.
The second place that Astarion can trigger a deal is the entrance to the Grand Mausoleum (X:-191, Y:112). Raphael appears to warn the party of a threat within the depths of the Mausoleum, an old enemy of his, as part of Kill Raphael's Old Enemy. Regardless of if Astarion has told the party or not about his scars, he asks Raphael if he can decipher them. Raphael agrees, but only if the party slays the beast he was speaking about. If the party calls him out about keeping secrets, then Raphael reveals his own surprise at Astarion "keeping his clothes on" for so long and magically takes them off so that the party can see the scars in question.
The enemy in question is an orthon named Yurgir, who is trapped deep within the Gauntlet of Shar located under the Mausoleum. If Astarion is in the party, then he disapproves of anything other than immediately killing Yurgir, even if the player plans to trick Yurgir into killing himself. Additionally, if the party attempts to help Yurgir as part of Break Yurgir's Contract, Astarion becomes upset that they haven't killed him and questions the player. If the player breaks Yurgir's contract instead of killing him, Astarion is furious and asks why he should remain in the party at all. He requires either a Persuasion or Deception Check (DC 14) to remain in the party.
If Yurgir is killed, Raphael is true to his word and comes to camp to explain the runes on Astarion's back. It is one part of seven of a contract with the demon Mephistopheles, stating that if Cazador completes the Black Mass Ritual, he can become a Vampire Ascendant who is free from the typical vampire weaknesses, like walking in the sun.
The deal with Raphael can technically be avoided if Astarion is not in the party and is avoided at camp. This means that the party doesn't lose approval for helping Yurgir, but Astarion also doesn't learn about his scars.
Araj Oblodra[edit | edit source]
An optional scene that is important to Astarion's story arc can be found in Moonrise Towers. Araj Oblodra is a blood alchemist and trader, who has a particular interest in vampires. If Astarion is in the party, she asks the player if Astarion is their spawn. She explains that she's always dreamed of having her blood drunk by a vampire since she was a little girl. She is willing to give a legendary Potion of Everlasting Vigour to the party if Astarion drinks her blood. Astarion is visibly disgusted and, if asked why, explains that her blood smells foul and that he doesn't want to do it. The player can insist he get over it or insist to Araj that Astarion doesn't have to do it if he doesn't want to.
Later at camp, if the player stood up for Astarion, he thanks them and explains that he didn't know how to say no. If Astarion was pushed to drink the potion, then he tells the player how disgusted he feels and that he can't use his body as a tool anymore. The player can remain in good standing by apologizing to Astarion for pushing him to drink the potion and saying he doesn't have to do that ever again. If the player is romancing Astarion, pushing him to drink the potion leads him to saying he'll sleep alone from now on, unless the player chooses the right dialogue options (which means avoiding the subject and saying you actually care about him) and to continue dating him.
Investigating Cazador Szarr[edit | edit source]
Finding the Spawn[edit | edit source]
Two of Cazador's spawn, Petras and Dalyria, can be found chatting about the Black Mass in Fraygo's Flophouse on the upper floor (X:-21, Y:76). Astarion immediately threatens them for information, but can be persuaded to hold back. Unfortunately, the spawn know little, beyond that preparations for the Black Mass are well underway. It's also clear that the spawn believe they too will become ascended if the ritual is successful.
The Gur Camp[edit | edit source]
There is a Gur Camp in Rivington (X:102, Y:-12), lead by Ulma. Ulma tells the party that Astarion has done immense damage to her tribe and even stolen their children. She wishes to have them back, or at least revenge taken if the children are already dead. If Astarion is in the party, he can be told that it's the least he can do to get vengeance for the Gur, which he will agree to. Ulma states that the Gur have tried and failed to infiltrate Cazador's Palace, but that a spawn could do it.
Potential Abduction[edit | edit source]
Several of Astarion's fellow vampire spawn attempt to kidnap him after the party has entered the Lower City and long rested. Failing to stop them before they drop Astarion to 1hp results in Astarion being kidnapped and sent to Cazador's palace. Once there, he is tortured by Godey, who uses magic in an attempt to force Astarion to obey Cazador. This starts a saving throw, but even if it's failed, the tadpole within Astarion sends out a psionic wave that disrupts the spell. Godey becomes hostile after failing to collar Astarion and needs to be defeated. The party can regroup with Astarion in the kennels.
The Guard Tower[edit | edit source]
Cazador's Palace can be accessed via the Central Watch Tower (X:-53, Y:-64), near the Lower City Central Wall Waypoint, by climbing up the stairs. There are a number of charmed guards who try to stop the party, but can be persuaded or intimidated into standing down. Follow the way north to get to the door to Cazador's Palace. Once inside, the palace will be surprisingly empty of vampires, but holds a conspicuously large ballroom door that is locked. The way forward is by getting into that ballroom.
Entering the Ballroom[edit | edit source]
Two things are needed to enter the ballroom - a Szarr family signet ring, and a special Kozakuran phrase.
The Signet Ring[edit | edit source]
Speaking to Vilhelm, he can be persuaded or deceived into revealing that Godey has the signet ring that can unlock the door. Godey is in the kennels in the lower floor. Godey is waiting in ambush (X:-1289, Y:982), but a perception check reveals him and he can be called out. If Astarion is in the party, Godey asks what he has brought him:
- [DECEPTION] Cazador hired me to capture Astarion. I'm here to deliver.
- [INTIMIDATION] Lay a hand on me and lose it, bones.
Astarion insists that they need to get into the ballroom. Godey states that he was told not to open the ballroom no matter what.
- [PERSUASION] Your master needs Astarion for the ritual. He'll be furious if you stop us joining him.
- [DECEPTION] Cazador gave me orders too - Astarion needs to be returned no matter what.
- [INTIMIDATION] How about I start breaking bones and keep going until I find that key?
Succeeding the checks makes Godey relinquish the ring. Otherwise, he becomes hostile and the key has to be looted from his body.
The Passphrase[edit | edit source]
A note upstairs on the Chamberlain's desk (X:-1243, Y:976) suggests that one of the spawn has misplaced the dictionary used to decipher the passphrases. The dictionary is downstairs in a room full of necrotic magic (X:-1299, Y:967). A cursed corpse gives the life drain status to anyone who walks in, but it can be ended using Remove Curse, or simply flying past it. The dictionary is in a mahogany wardrobe to the west of the bed (X:-1291, Y:957). Reading the book gives the phrase to enter the ballroom.
Once in the ballroom, a number of werewolves notice the party. They state that no one is meant to enter while the ritual is occuring, and become hostile to the party. Move to the door to the southwest after defeating them to find an elevator down to Cazador's dungeon.
Cazador's Dungeon[edit | edit source]
After descending the elevator, there is a hallway to the west that connects to Cazador's chambers. It contains the skull of Cazador's former master, Velioth, and more information about him and the Black Mass ritual.
To the north, there are several people in cages, which will call out to the party. If Astarion is in the party, one of the men recognize him. It turns out that this is Sebastian, the first victim Astarion brought back to Cazador. Sebastian can be persuaded or deceived into revealing how to unlock the cages - Cazador's staff. The cell across the way can also be interacted with - it contains several Gur children who were captured and turned into vampire spawn. If they are told that Ulma sent the party, they also share that the staff is the key to opening the cells.
A Special Weapon[edit | edit source]
Within Cazador's dungeon is the Pelorsun Blade. It can be found by using Misty Step or Fly to jump down the hallway to the northwest of the elevator. The Pelorsun Blade is in the room to the east, in a rosewood casket (X:-1927, Y:851). There is a button in the room to the west (X:-1964, Y:842) that will summon a lantern, which can be used as an elevator to get the rest of the team down. Or, there is a door in the room that connects to the Lower City Sewers - Gloomy Ascent. This weapon deals radiant damage, which is highly effective against Cazador.
Confronting Cazador[edit | edit source]
Cazador is just north of the prisoners' cells. Bringing Astarion to the ritual causes him to attack Cazador, no matter what is said. Cazador is too powerful, and uses his powers to trap Astarion in a rune circle. After this, Cazador attacks, along with several bats, werewolves, and fallen Gur hunters. Moving over to Astarion and using the help action releases him from imprisonment and allows him to rejoin the fight. If Astarion is not released in three turns, the ritual succeeds and Cazador becomes a Vampire Ascendant. If Astarion is not in the party, then Cazador can be persuaded in letting the party leave so they can bring Astarion back, or they can simply start the fight with him without Astarion.
If Astarion was never recruited or if he was killed (such as staking him in camp), then he is at the ritual as a zombie.
Once Cazador is defeated, he returns to his coffin in an attempt to enter a healing sleep. Interacting with the coffin has Astarion prying Cazador out of the coffin. Astarion attempts to use the ritual for himself, and requests the player for assistance. The player can agree, attempt to persuade Astarion against using the ritual, or simply refuse to help. If the player agrees to assist, Astarion completes the Black Mass by carving the runes into Cazador's back and sacrificing the six spawn and seven thousand souls. He becomes a Vampire Ascendant, warping his personality. When Ulma and the Gur arrive, they find him responsible for the deaths of their children and only one can come out alive - Astarion or the Gur.
If Astarion is persuaded not to use the ritual, he simply kills Cazador without performing the Black Mass, then he remains a vampire spawn for the rest of his days. He has the choice to kill the seven thousand victims or release them, or simply leave them. Freeing them, the other spawn lead them to live in the Underdark. Killing them, Astarion sees it as a mercy killing, as they never learned how to control their hunger. If he decides to leave them, Astarion breaks Cazador's staff and says that he is done with this place and done with all of them. Breaking the staff results in it not being available as a quest reward. Regardless of the choice, the Gur do not attack Astarion and see him as having redeemed himself.
If any of the other vampire spawn were killed during the Cazador fight, the ritual is unable to be completed and Astarion kills Cazador without attempting to perform the ritual, and moves onto the choice regarding the other spawn in prison. The dialogue with the Gur and the other companions will proceed as if Astarion had chosen to give up on the ritual himself. If Astarion was killed earlier in the game, then the only option is whether to kill or release the prisoners.
It is possible for Astarion to leave the party permanently during this quest. If the player fails to persuade Astarion or refuses to help him with the ritual, he will leave the party after deciding to keep the spawn locked up, stating that he was done with Cazador, done with this place, and done with the party. If Astarion was allowed to start the ritual, the player has the option to interrupt him by killing Cazador while the ritual is in progress, doing so will stop Astarion's ascension and cause him to become hostile, attacking the party.
Quest Rewards[edit | edit source]
- Allies for Gather Your Allies:
- Ulma and the Gur if Cazador is defeated and Astarion does not complete the ritual OR
- Astarion and his servants of the night if he becomes a Vampire Ascendant.
- If Astarion ascends, he gains the passive feature Vampire Ascendant which grants the actions Ascendant Bite and Misty Escape, and an additional 1d10Necrotic damage to weapon and unarmed attacks.
Achievements[edit | edit source]
|Just a Nibble|
Let Astarion bite you - ouch.
Notes[edit | edit source]
- As of Patch 1, there is a glitch where the vampire spawn will not take Astarion if he isn't in the party. The spawn will keep attacking him even though he's downed, making the only way to end the fight defeating the vampires.