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Nature of the beast

Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins Game Guide

Strategy Guide and Walkthrough by Jacek "Stranger" Halas gamepressure.com

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Description: You're going to be stopped by Mithra upon your arrival in the [Brecilian forest] - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Description: You're going to be stopped by Mithra upon your arrival in the [Brecilian forest]. Don't worry about choosing the correct answers during this conversation, because sooner or later you'll be granted an audience with Zathrian. The meeting will take place in [Brecilian forest - Dalish camp] (M44, 1). Agree to help Zathrian to get rid of the werewolves by finding Witherfang, killing it and collecting its heart. Proceed to the edge of the camp when you're ready to leave and confirm that you want to travel to [Brecilian forest - Western part] (M41, 7).

During your time spent in the western section of the forest (M42, 1) you'll be dealing mostly with werewolves and Plague wolves - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

During your time spent in the western section of the forest (M42, 1) you'll be dealing mostly with werewolves and Plague wolves. Eliminating both types of these creatures shouldn't be a big deal as long as you don't attack several larger groups at the same time. There are also going to be several mini-bosses running around the forest, but it's nothing you can't handle. Get to the only bridge leading to the eastern section of the map (M42, 3) and you'll automatically trigger a conversation with Swiftrunner. Once you've made the introductions you can use persuasion, lie to the werewolf or intimidate the beast to make the conversation last longer or you can attack the werewolves right now. If you choose to fight you won't kill Swiftrunner, because it'll escape when it's heavily wounded. Generally speaking you don't have to be too excited about this meeting, because it won't effect the rest of this quest.

Keep moving slowly, because you'll be encountering new monsters every few meters and a large ogre is going to be one of the creatures you'll have to kill - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Keep moving slowly, because you'll be encountering new monsters every few meters and a large ogre is going to be one of the creatures you'll have to kill. Try to provoke the ogre to chase after you, so you won't have to worry about killing any other beasts at the same time. You can also consider using traps, especially by placing them in narrow passageways. Your current objective is to get to a large clearing with a Grand Oak. Be careful, because the area is being guarded by wild sylvans and the trees will be coming back to life whenever you get close to them. Try attacking one sylvan at a time and watch out for the roots coming out of the ground, because they can immobilize your team members. Get rid of all nearby trees aside from the Grand Oak (M42, 6).

You will be allowed to talk to the Grand Oak once it's safe again and it'll probably take you a while to fully understand what the tree is trying to tell you - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

You will be allowed to talk to the Grand Oak once it's safe again and it'll probably take you a while to fully understand what the tree is trying to tell you. Naturally you can decide to destroy the oak, however I would recommend holding on with that idea until you explore all areas and meet other inhabitants of the forest. The best solution at the moment is to agree to help the oak in finding one of its missing acorns. In return the tree will agree to help you in finding the Witherfang. End this conversation and choose one of the passageways leading to [Brecilian forest - Eastern part] (M42, 7).

The eastern part of the forest (M43, 1) is going to be much smaller, however you will have to pay more attention to new monsters, including other wild sylvans - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

The eastern part of the forest (M43, 1) is going to be much smaller, however you will have to pay more attention to new monsters, including other wild sylvans. The biggest gathering of the walking trees can be found in the center of the map. You should go north-east, because that's where you'll meet mad Hermit (M43, 4). Save before you engage him in a conversation, because you'll have to choose the ending for this quest here.

RETRIEVING THE ACORN:

It won't take you long to figure out that it's Hermit (M43, 4) who stole the acorn from the oak and there are a few ways of retrieving it - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

It won't take you long to figure out that it's Hermit (M43, 4) who stole the acorn from the oak and there are a few ways of retrieving it. If you want to avoid combat start the conversation and agree to his game of asking and answering questions. Focus on asking him what he wants in return for the stolen acorn and you'll find out that he would be interested in a ring you might have found in the ruins in the western part of the forest. Aside from trading the acorn you can also trade a book for an ancient elven helmet. Make sure to finish all transactions right now if you're planning on attacking Hermit later.

Attacking and killing Hermit on the other hand is not as easy as it sounds, because even if you force a duel he'll ignore you and you'll return to the conversation - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Attacking and killing Hermit on the other hand is not as easy as it sounds, because even if you force a duel he'll ignore you and you'll return to the conversation. The only way to provoke Hermit is to click on a nearby tree stump and to try taking something from it. This will make him angry and he'll start the battle himself. Make sure to attack Hermit first, because he's a powerful mage. Once he's dead check his body for the acorn. You can now return to [Brecilian forest - Western part] and return this object to the Grand Oak (M42, 6). In return you'll receive a mixture which will start working automatically, allowing you to get past a magical barrier in the forest.

DESTROYING THE OAK:

You can also comply to Hermit's wish (M43, 4), because during the initial conversation you'll find out that he wants you to kill the Grand Oak for him - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

You can also comply to Hermit's wish (M43, 4), because during the initial conversation you'll find out that he wants you to kill the Grand Oak for him. This means you would have return to [Brecilian forest - Western part] (M42, 6). Inform the tree that you've arrived to destroy it and start the battle. Eliminating the oak shouldn't be a big problem, however you will have to spend about a minute fighting it. Once the dirty deed has been done return to Hermit and tell him about your success. Hermit will reply by telling you that he can help you in crossing the magical barrier if you deliver him a single werewolve's skin.

FINDING THE WITHERFANG:

Both methods described above lead to this common solution which is to travel to [Brecilian forest - Eastern part] and to find the magical barrier (M43, 6) - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Both methods described above lead to this common solution which is to travel to [Brecilian forest - Eastern part] and to find the magical barrier (M43, 6). Now that you have a proper item from Hermit or the oak you can cross the barrier without being stopped. Save your game once you're on the other side and head forward.

Keep going straight until you're stopped by the Swiftrunner again - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Keep going straight until you're stopped by the Swiftrunner again. You won't be allowed to skip this fight, so you'll have to be ready to engage the werewolves in a battle. As soon as the fighting has started focus your attention on the Swiftrunner, because once it's badly injured it'll escape and you'll be allowed to move on. Head forward until you meet the Gatekeeper (no fights this time). Choose the only passageway leading to [Brecilian forest - Upper ruins] (M43, 8).

The game starts in the eastern section of the ruins (M44, 1) and you'll be moving west - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

The game starts in the eastern section of the ruins (M44, 1) and you'll be moving west. Make sure to inspect northern and southern corridors as you progress, however don't count on finding a lot of cool items. Soon after you've entered a larger section of the ruins you're going to be attacked by a small group of werewolves and it also won't take long until you come across spiders. Make sure not to move too fast, so you won't end up being surrounded by too many beasts for you to handle. Turn south-west at the end of the main corridor (M44, 2).

Watch out for a lot of dangerous traps in your vicinity, however they're not your biggest concern - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Watch out for a lot of dangerous traps in your vicinity, however they're not your biggest concern. As soon as you've entered a new room (M44, 3) and moved forward a few steps you're going to be attacked by a dragon. I would recommend that you return to the previous corridor, so that during this battle you won't step on any traps. Monitor your team members and their health bars and apply healing spells or potions each time their lives are in jeopardy. Prevent the dragon from stunning your allies too many items by using stun abilities and spells yourself or by freezing the monster with ice spells. Once the dragon has been defeated enter the large room again and spend some time looking for the dragon hoard (M44, 4), because you'll find A LOT of items there. You may now travel to [Brecilian forest - Lower ruins] (M44, 5).

This time you'll be heading south (M45, 1), however after a while you'll turn east - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

This time you'll be heading south (M45, 1), however after a while you'll turn east. Notice that this level is swarming with different types of skeletons. It's a good thing, because these monsters won't deal a lot of damage and they'll be relatively easy to kill. Watch out for new spiders on the other hand, especially for a larger group which will take you by surprise near the first large room.

Your primary objective for the time being is to reach the second large room of the ruins (M45, 2) - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Your primary objective for the time being is to reach the second large room of the ruins (M45, 2). That's where you'll meet the ghost of a young boy, however the conversation will be cut short and it will result with a huge battle during which there are going to be more skeletons for you to dismember. Once it's safe proceed south-east and keep killing the undead creatures as you progress.

Continue eliminating all the monsters you encounter until you make your way to a much larger room of the ruins (M45, 5) - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Continue eliminating all the monsters you encounter until you make your way to a much larger room of the ruins (M45, 5). I would recommend that you encourage enemy archers seen nearby to chase you to the previous corridor. Once they're gone enter this room with a rogue and disarm at least some of the nearby traps. When it's relatively save for the rest of the team to show up order everyone to head west. Enter yet another large room (M45, 7) and start off by eliminating closest targets. It would be a good idea to save your progress before using the stairs.

A new mini-boss (arcane horror) is waiting for you at the bottom of the stairs (M45, 8) and defeating this creature using standard methods won't be a simple thing - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

A new mini-boss (arcane horror) is waiting for you at the bottom of the stairs (M45, 8) and defeating this creature using standard methods won't be a simple thing. The boss would teleport itself a lot and it would inflict a lot of lightning injuries to the main character and to the rest of the team. The best way to get rid of this monster is to attack it with your archers or with your mages from a safe distance. Keep attacking the arcane horror until it dies and only then get closer to its body. More skeletons will appear (two groups), but winning now won't be a problem. The only passageway to the next area can be found in the northern room. Click on a small pool in the center of the room (M45, 9) and you'll travel to [Brecilian forest - Werewolves Lair].

You'll start exploring the last level of the ruins in a bad spot (M46, 1), because there are a lot of monsters nearby - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

You'll start exploring the last level of the ruins in a bad spot (M46, 1), because there are a lot of monsters nearby. Move your team members away from the door and open the door by standing next to it in order to attract only some of the nearby werewolves. Wait for the beasts to show up and kill them before dealing with the next group. Be careful, because some of the werewolves will use camouflage similar to what your rogues can do. Kill them as soon as possible in order to prevent them from making any similar attempts in the future. Remain in this room until the area is safe.

The next room will be guarded by a couple of werewolves and it would be a good idea to avoid fighting more than one beast at a time - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

The next room will be guarded by a couple of werewolves and it would be a good idea to avoid fighting more than one beast at a time. You'll also have to watch out for deadly traps near the center of the room (M46, 2). Keep disarming these objects as you move forward to prevent your allies from stepping on them. Head south (M46, 3) and it won't take long until you meet the Gatekeeper. Make sure to SAVE YOUR GAME before talking to this werewolf, because this is where you'll have to decide how to end this quest (M46, 4).

HELPING THE WEREWOLVES TO GET RID OF THE ELVES:

Choosing this ending will result in Dalish elves being exterminated and replaced with werewolves as your allies in dealing with the Plague problem - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Choosing this ending will result in Dalish elves being exterminated and replaced with werewolves as your allies in dealing with the Plague problem. Notice that the werewolves will still be cursed, because the only hope for them will die along with Zathrian and the rest of the elves. This is an ideal ending for an evil hero and if you have good characters in your team they'll protest against what you're trying to achieve. In order for you to help the werewolves you'll have to convince the Gatekeeper (M46, 4) that you're friendly and then you must also convince Lady of the Forest (M46, 5) using persuasion that she shouldn't negotiate with Zathrian anymore.

Your negotiations will result in you and other werewolves returning to [Brecilian forest - Dalish camp] - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Your negotiations will result in you and other werewolves returning to [Brecilian forest - Dalish camp]. Have a little chat with Zathrian and begin the huge battle between the elves and the werewolves. Focus all of your efforts on eliminating elven mages, however I would also recommend killing Zathrian sooner rather than later. Once you've eliminated all the elves you can talk to Lady of the Forest again and she'll agree to assist you when the time comes to defend the land against the Plague. It will also mean that you've successfully completed this quest.

LIFTING THE CURSE:

Achieving this ending is going to be quite difficult, however it's best you can hope for while playing as a good character - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Achieving this ending is going to be quite difficult, however it's best you can hope for while playing as a good character. The biggest advantage of you choosing this ending is that both sides (elves and werewolves) will survive. Start off by talking to the Gatekeeper (M46, 4) and agree to have a meeting with Lady of the Forest (M46, 5). During this conversation you'll have to convince the leader of the beasts that she should invite Zathrian for a peace meeting and to ask him to lift the curse.

End the conversation with Lady of the Forest and follow her advise by heading towards a newly unlocked passageway (M46, 6) - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

End the conversation with Lady of the Forest and follow her advise by heading towards a newly unlocked passageway (M46, 6). Use the stairs and open the door to find yourself standing in [Brecilian forest - Upper ruins]. All you have to do here is to make a few steps forward until you come across Zathrian (M44, 6).

You won't be able to effect the outcome of this conversation in any major way, but thankfully Zathrian won't attack you when he finds out that the werewolves are still alive - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

You won't be able to effect the outcome of this conversation in any major way, but thankfully Zathrian won't attack you when he finds out that the werewolves are still alive. He'll eventually agree to have a meeting with Lady of the Forest. You must be more careful from now on, because your decision will affect the ending of this quest. Wait for Zathrian to ask for your opinion and choose the first or the second dialogue option from the list to side with the werewolves.

A huge battle is going to take place inside this cavern - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

A huge battle is going to take place inside this cavern. You'll have all the werewolves on your side (including the Witherfang aka Lady of the Forest). Zathrian won't be alone, because shadows and sylvans will join him. The most important thing for you to know about is that you should IGNORE all the enemy units aside from Zathrian. Keep attacking him, because once he's lost all health points this battle will automatically end. The easiest way to defeat him is to surround him with at least two warriors to prevent him from casting too many spells.

You'll now witness an interesting cut-scene during which Zathrian and Lady of the Forest will sacrifice their lives to lift the cruse and to transform the werewolves back to being elves - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

You'll now witness an interesting cut-scene during which Zathrian and Lady of the Forest will sacrifice their lives to lift the cruse and to transform the werewolves back to being elves. Talk to some of the civilians and when you're ready you'll return to [Brecilian forest - Dalish camp] where other elves will greet you (M41, 1) and promise their help against the Plague. Congratulations on completing this main quest.

HELPING THE ELVES TO GET RID OF THE WEREWOLVES:

This is also an ending reserved for an evil character and your good followers this time will protest even more against the werewolves being exterminated - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

This is also an ending reserved for an evil character and your good followers this time will protest even more against the werewolves being exterminated. There are a few ways for you to reach the ending and the best one is to betray beast's trust at the very last moment. Start off by talking to the Gatekeeper (M46, 4). I wouldn't recommend attacking the keeper, because aside from the mini-boss you would also have to deal with a large group of standard werewolves.

Thankfully even if you do manage to kill the Gatekeeper you won't turn all the other werewolves hostile towards you and you'll still be allowed to choose between several endings during your conversation with the Lady of the Forest (M46, 5) - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Thankfully even if you do manage to kill the Gatekeeper you won't turn all the other werewolves hostile towards you and you'll still be allowed to choose between several endings during your conversation with the Lady of the Forest (M46, 5). In this case you shouldn't start the fight right away, because you would be vastly outnumbered. Instead agree to help her in asking Zathrian for a peace meeting (M44, 6). Check the description of the previous ending (Lifting the curse) to find out exactly how this can be achieved.

During the conversation with Zathrian you can agree to killing the werewolves right away or you can wait with your decision until you've returned to the Lady of the Forest - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

During the conversation with Zathrian you can agree to killing the werewolves right away or you can wait with your decision until you've returned to the Lady of the Forest. Once the werewolves find out that you're not their ally anymore a huge battle will start, but thankfully you'll have Zathrian on your side which will make things easier.

Having Zathrian to join the battle at your side is a crucial thing, because he's a powerful mage and he'll help you in defeating the werewolves - Nature of the beast - Main quests - Dragon Age: Origins - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Having Zathrian to join the battle at your side is a crucial thing, because he's a powerful mage and he'll help you in defeating the werewolves. Notice that killing the Witherfang won't end this battle, because your objective will be to dispose of all the beasts in the lair. I would recommend killing some of the weaker werewolves as soon as possible, so you won't be surrounded by hostiles from all directions. Finish off by killing several mini-bosses and the Witherfang. Once you've won Zathrian will thank you for your assistance, he'll give you gryphon's nib and he'll promise to join the battle against the Plague. This is where you'll end your journey into the forest.

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