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Ulgoth's Beard (AR1000) [After Durlag's Tower]

Did we miss anything in this location? Is there something we didn't discover? Let us know!


Overview

After clearing out Durlag's Tower and claiming the Soultaker Dagger, when you return to Ulgoth's Beard, you'll immediately be stopped by a cult enforcer (#1). He'll demand that you hand over the dagger. No matter what you say to him, he'll take the dagger and teleport away. You'll then be attacked by several cultists, including a pair of assassins who will sneak behind you and try to backstab your casters. You'll earn 3200 xp for defeating the cultists, and when you loot their corpses you'll find some Arrows of Biting, a Knave's Robe, a Long Sword +1, four Potions of Heroism, and a Wand of Frost.

With the welcome wagon out of the way, you'll be able to explore the town normally again. The cultists won't have killed or disrupted any of the NPCs, so you're free to complete quests, go shopping, or rest at an inn -- or even visit other maps and do other things for a while.

But eventually you should enter the Ulgoth's Beard Inn (#2) and talk to Hurgan Stoneblade. He'll tell you that years ago his grandfather and Durlag defeated a tanar'ri and captured its essence inside the Soultaker Dagger, and that now the cultists plan to use the dagger to release the tanar'ri upon the world. He'll then recommend that you retrieve the dagger before that can happen.

You'll find the cultists inside Shandalar's house (#3). You'll know it's the right place because you'll encounter a cult guard loitering next to the entrance. If you talk to the guard, then he'll summon help, so you should either not talk to him at all and just enter the house, or force-attack him before he can say anything. The cultists won't drop anything interesting when they die other than some more Arrows of Biting and Potions of Heroism, so there isn't any reason to trigger the fight unless you really want some extra xp.

Inside the house, you'll get attacked by more cultists, including two cult assassins, a cult enforcer, and a cult wizard. This can be a messy fight, so it's a good idea to buff up before going in. The easiest way we've found to deal with the cultists is to enter the house, talk to the wizard (who will start a brief conversation with you), and then immediately use the exit. For some reason, half the cultists followed us and half stayed behind, allowing us to break the fight into two much easier parts. You'll earn 4,700 xp for defeating the cultists, and when you loot their corpses you'll find the same stuff as from the first fight (#1), plus a Quarterstaff +1, a Traveler's Robe, and a Wand of Sleep.

When you descend into the basement of the house, you'll witness Tracea Carol and six other cultists preparing for a ritual. You'll get a chance to talk to Tracea, but no matter what you say to her, she'll break the Soultaker Dagger and release the tanar'ri Aec'Letec.

Obviously, as the culmination of the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion pack, this is a tough fight. Before entering the basement, you should buff up as best you can, including using whatever helpful potions you have available. Bless, haste, defensive harmony, mirror image, Potions of Invulnerability, and Potions of Storm Giant Strength are all useful.

Then when the fight starts up, we'd recommend that you put your tank on Aec'Letec while the rest of your party takes down Tracea (who conveniently starts out right next to you) and the other six cultists. If you don't kill the cultists, then Aec'Letec will take over their bodies when he dies, and you'll have to kill him multiple times.

The main difficulty with this fight is Aec'Letec's death gaze. If the character he gazes at fails their save (versus death), then they'll be paralyzed -- and eventually turn into a ghast, which will kill them permanently. The only way to prevent this is to increase your party's saves (thus the Potions of Invulnerability), and the only way to cure the gaze is to use Dispel Magic. So make sure your casters have multiple copies of that spell available. You can also summon lots of monsters around Aec'Letec to give him more targets for his gaze and improve your odds.

Note: If you're having lots of trouble with the battle, another thing you can try is leaving the basement. In the original game, Aec'Letec wouldn't chase you, but in the EE he will -- at least to the upper floor of Shandalar's house. But either way you can create an intermission in the battle and take the time to rest and regain health and spells.

When you win the battle, you'll earn 19,800 xp, and you'll find six Potions of Heroism on the corpses of the cultists. Then when you return to Hurgan, he'll thank you for your help -- and leave without giving you a reward. Oh, well. Congratulations for completing the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion pack!


1 - Cult Enforcer


2 - Ulgoth's Beard Inn


3 - Shandalar's House