Escort Quests offer the opportunity to guide and protect a person to a desired destination - in return they will offer a gift, gold, or other reward; additionally completing the quest raises the escortee's affinity with the Arisen.
The person escorted must be kept from harm - if they are armed they will defend themselves, though many are not, and are not skilled in unarmed combat. Group curatives, and healing spells can be used to heal the accompanied person. If the charge dies they can be revived with a Wakestone.
Tactics for dangerous situations include:
- Staying distant from any foe with the escortee whilst the pawns deal with the problem.
- Carrying the escortee to safety, preventing them from wandering into rampaging cyclops and so on.
Sticking to paths usually avoids many encounters with beasts and other enemies, but beware of ambush.
A number of destinations are popular with questees - guides to more difficult aspects of the journeys are given below:
- Route maps show the road routes described from Gran Soren, with destinations circled. Deviations are not shown.
The far distant Bloodwater Beach is a popular destination for all, for people from both Gran Soren and Cassardis.
The first path of the route is much the same as the Shadow Fort route - as far as the Miner's Toolshed - for persons starting in Gran Soren; if the Quarry is safe this path can be taken, and then backwards along the path to the Toolshed.
From the toolshed any wanderings southwest will lead to the beach - the final stage is fairly safe - the Conqueror's Sanctuary is dangerous, but easily seen and avoided from a distance - there is a safe route down to the beach via Noonflower Cliff Cave that avoids that battleground.
If taking a route through the Verda Woodlands a walk along the cliffs is an alternative - it is safe for almost all the journey and presents numerous opportunities for useful gathering of materials. Caution should be taken at the Tomb of the Unknown Traveler to avoid waking the Golem that rests there.
The journey to Cape Pactforge is one of the simplest that can be made; it lies on the coast just outside the southern gate of Gran Soren.
Cassardis to Gran Soren
The route from Cassardis to Gran Soren is fairly safe at most times. Bandit and goblin ambushes can be expected on the Seabreeze Trail, Manamia Trail and through the Moonsbit Pass - the pass adds the extra danger of harpies - which may attempt to carry you charge off to their deaths. At night wolves are common.
The final segment across the Estan Plains is usually uneventful - though at night a few undead may appear.
The journey becomes a hellish nightmare during the Post-Game - a few brave or foolish souls from Cassardis may still want to make the journey to Cape Pactforge or elsewhere - in these cases - prepare well.
The route to the Greatwall Encampment is one of the most hazardous of all. Risks including giant beasts, bandits, ambushes and deadly falls are all but unavoidable.
There are several routes to the Greatwall from Gran Soren:
The initial part of the journey from Gran Soren can made by routes both north and south of the river:
- The northern route can be taken by crossing the river bridge and then through the Deos Hills; a group of female bandits will be encountered here as well as the risk of encountering a nearby chimera if venturing away from the road.
- The southerly route is via the Wilted Forest and fording the river south-east of The Abbey. This passes a bask of sulfur saurians at the river crossing which can pose a real threat to low-level groups.
Past the cyclope, the only passage to the Greatwall is along a road rising into the mountains. There will be encounters with female bandits, wolves, possibly a nearby chimera, and at night, skeleton lords.
Before the road rises to a steep mountain track to The Ruins of Heavenspeak Fort there is the option to go into the eastern entrance of Soulflayer Canyon which is located in a hollow off the path. Both paths have their own dangers.
- The passage through Soulflayer Canyon has many risks of falling. This is exacerbated as the area is home to snow harpies which can lift both the Arisen and pawns into the air who may then fall to their death. Other significant hazards include phantasms, sulfur saurians, and hobgoblins. The route through the canyon from its eastern entrance runs roughly downwards from the broken bridge to a low area where the saurians and phantasms are encountered, though a winding tunnel inhabited by goblins, then upwards by crossing a bridge and ascending several ladders to the opposite side of the broken bridge where the western branch from the tunnel here leads outside. If side-routes and exploration are avoided the danger is minimized. The exit to the canyon is close to the Greatwall. There are further goblins, phantasms and poisoned waterways on the way but they should not pose a major risk.
- The mountain path route is guarded by a cyclope and female bandits. There are additional hazards, in particular a sleep and lethal drop to the left of the path and rolling boulders. The Westron Labrys Banditss inhabiting Heavenspeak Fort will become aggressive if there are any male pawns in the party. The main gate will be closed if this is the first visit. Beyond the fort there are several paths to the Greatwall. The shortest is the most dangerous because it is guarded by a chimera. Other routes are possible but all have various risks variously including falling rocks, snow harpies, hobgoblins and direwolves.
The journey from Gran Soren has a clear path all the way, but can present several dangers, especially to the unlucky or ill-prepared.
Exit from Gran Soren's north gate as it is closest, and travel to the landmark bridge over the great river and north along the Conquest Road. The road is usually safe as far as Windbluff Tower, but bandit and goblin ambushes have been known and also harpies might be encountered. At night, some skeletons will appear. If extremely unlucky, a Chimera will spot the party and attack coming from the woods.
Beyond Windbluff, the creatures become more dangerous as the climate cools - direwolves and snow harpies appear in number. Just past Windbluff Tower is Hillfigure Knoll on the left side, visible from afar - here any quests for that location can be completed.
The road continues northwards - a cyclops may be encountered blocking the road, which can either be fought or avoided. Further along the road are more direwolves and the chance of more bandit ambushes.
Eventually a fork in the road appears with an obvious path leading left, north towards The Blighted Manse, a clear landmark. This leads upwards into the hills, and eventually to the Manse's main entrance, and further on to the spring.
A trip to Hillfigure Knoll is popular for students of the obscure - this journey is the same as the Healing Spring route - turn off the road after Windbluff tower towards the foot of the giant warrior drawn on the hill.
A journey here can take the same route as the Greatwall route, but needs deviate at the final stage. Either route to the Greatwall takes one to the Barta Crags - from their several routes are possible, some more dangerous than others.. It is mostly that wish to make this journey - though they insist on starting in Gran Soren, not Heavenspeak.
If the route takes the party past The Ruins of Heavenspeak Fort then the destination can be reached by traveling northwest, braving either rockfalls, or a Chimera to the lake - from their skirting the lake leftwards when reached should take the party round the swamp. Eventually a largish campsite is reached, with several tents. Here a grounded boat forms a walkway across a narrow part of the swamp to the island that is the quests destination.
Within the Barta Crags snow harpies and Sulfur Saurians may be encountered - at night the swamps poison is neutralized by fireflies, but it then becomes haunted by Wights and lesser undead. The destination is close to the haunt of a wight, and if the party linger to long at night the wight may be roused.
There are multiple routes to the falls from Gran Soren - a direct path leads past The Ancient Quarry to a ford across the river to the Cursewood. This route is one option of the longer Greatwall route.
A relatively safe journey can be made by road, though the road through the Estan Plains poses the danger of a Griffin ambush. At night the wilted forest comes alive with undead, which are easily avoided.
Caution should be taken on the very last part of the trip at night, as if the route to the Abbey is taken first, the final few yards lead past two Ogres. A slight detour is all that is need to avoid these two brutes.
The Shadow Fort is one of the more distant and dangerous treks - there are several routes to it, and each must pass through one of two choke points - either through The Ancient Quarry, or the mountain pass from the Manamia Trail that leads to The Ruins of Aernst Castle and the Witchwood into the Verda Woodlands.
- Quarry route
If the Ancient Quarry had or had been cleared out this is a safe route, with little chance or truly dangerous encounters. However the quarry is initially infested with monsters including three Ogres - most persons would be unlikely to survive even a brief encounter with such a beast. Killing the monsters in the quarry forms part of the quest Of Merchants and Monsters.
- Verda woodlands
The route via the mountain pass into the Verda Woodlands is more scenic, and much longer. There are several dangers along the route, especially at day - large groups of bandits lurk along the pass and road to the castle.
At the pass itself there may be rockfalls to avoid.
Most of the bandits can be avoided by slipping into the woods of the once the pass has been crossed - however this leads to a Saurian infested area -it can be passed with care if tripwires are avoided and basks are not approached so closely to rouse the sleeping reptiles. The deepest parts of the forest should be avoided due to the presence of a Chimera.
The path leads to the Miner's Toolshed through goblin infested territory - the shed itself is also now home to goblins. Here the northern route should be taken, avoiding straying from the path as another Chimera lies in the woods. Eventually the Rest Camp should be reached. There are more dangers on either side of the path on the final leg of this route - a Drake in Devilfire Grove and a Cyclops south of that.
- Final leg
From the rest camp the Fort is west through territory occupied by Saurian's and Hobgoblins - if these cannot be defended against then the route is too dangerous for the party. The quarry route joins the path halfway along this final leg.
Stones of Courage
The route to the Stones of Courage from Gran Soren is short and relatively safe - little more danger than a few Hobgoblins should be encountered along the way. However, if the party is very unlucky they may be ambushed by a Griffin on the Estan Plains.
Most of the people wishing to travel to the Stones of Courage are Soldiers and are able to defend themselves - if not entirely abandoned they should be able to defend themselves against the common threats.
If starting from Cassardis the route is far longer; the Cassardis to Gran Soren route adds little real extra danger.
- The directions and paths given here are mere guides - as long as the quest giver is delivered alive to the desired destination the quest will end with success. Any roundabout route can be taken.
- Escorted persons can be healed with group curatives, additionally anodyne will heal the escortee completely.