Astarion’s Dilemma in Baldur’s Gate 3: Should You Bring Him Along for His Final Quest?

RPG veterans know the drill: a party member’s personal quest usually requires their presence in the thick of things. It goes without saying – they have the biggest stake in resolving their own narrative. Yet, Baldur’s Gate 3 occasionally challenges this established notion. In the case of Astarion, the enigmatic vampire spawn, bringing him along for his final quest in Baldur’s Gate might actually be a strategic misstep. His presence complicates the climactic battle against his former master, making it significantly more challenging.

The Stakes: Astarion’s Quest & The Trouble with Spoilers

Without delving too deeply into spoilers, here’s the gist of Astarion’s final quest:

  • Location: His former home in Baldur’s Gate, once a sanctuary for his vampire coven.
  • Objectives: Your party must stop Cazador Szarr, the vampire who transformed Astarion (and numerous others) into a vampire spawn. This insidious master is about to complete a dangerous ritual, and Astarion, regrettably, holds a vital role in the process.

Astarion offers crucial insights during this tense exploration. He reveals the labyrinthine secrets of his old lair and suggests clever solutions that your party may not discover otherwise. Moreover, the dramatic revelations within Cazador’s hideout peel back the layers of his personality. Many players, myself included, initially dismiss Astarion as an irredeemable force of evil among a band of morally complex companions. This quest challenges that perception.

However, and this is where the dilemma begins, including Astarion in the final showdown against Cazador creates a significant handicap: you will end up with one less party member in the fight. There are workarounds, but they will influence how the pre-fight scene plays out.

Astarion & The Fight Against Cazador: Your Strategic Options

Here’s a step-by-step analysis of your options and how they impact the quest’s culmination:

Option 1: Leave Him at Camp

  • Ease of Combat: The most straightforward way. Up until the very last moment, you can travel back to camp and replace Astarion with a full-fledged fighter. The battle will be considerably easier with a complete team of four.
  • Narrative Trade-Off: You’ll need to fill Astarion in on the details later, but you gain a strategic advantage.

Option 2: “Ungroup” & Wait

  • Best of Both Worlds?: Ungroup Astarion from your party before entering the final battle room. The pre-fight dialogue will play out without him, followed by the commencement of the fight. Simply switch back to Astarion, guide him into the arena, and you’ll avoid the events that would otherwise take him out of the fight entirely.
  • The Downside: You’ll miss out on the tense exchange between Cazador and Astarion prior to the battle, reducing some of the pre-fight drama.

Option 3: “Help” Action Rescue

  • For Drama Enthusiasts: If Astarion is taken out of action during the fight, you can try to revive him. After certain events unfold (no spoilers here!), he’ll find himself on a different section of the battlefield. Reach him with a durable character and use the ‘Help’ action to bring him back to your side.
  • High-Risk, High-Reward: Requires navigating multiple enemies while Astarion remains defenseless. Make sure you send your tankiest team member!

The Choice is Yours

Ultimately, the decision rests in your hands. Do you crave a smoother fight, sparing yourself complications? Or do you live for the heightened drama and challenge? Astarion’s ending unfolds in a satisfying way regardless of your path. Choose wisely, and enjoy unraveling the complexities of one of Baldur’s Gate 3’s most fascinating companions.

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