Amid the intricate narrative of The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings, players encounter a pivotal quest known as “Woe to the Vanquished.” This quest unfolds during the “To the Temple” questline, when Geralt of Rivia is tasked with finding a way into the castle temple by King Foltest.
The village confrontation
As players traverse the village inside La Valette Castle, a distressing scene unfolds. A group of soldiers is ruthlessly mistreating the villagers, imposing financial burdens, and instigating fear. This prompts a woman to emerge from her house, pleading for help. However, tragedy strikes as a soldier callously takes her life.
Enraged by this brutality, Geralt initiates the “Woe to the Vanquished” quest. Players have the option to intervene in two distinct tasks, each presenting a choice that influences the outcome.
Task 1: Confrontation in the house
Upon entering the house from which the woman emerged, the players confront soldiers extorting the villagers. A trio of options is presented: using the Axii sign to force them to leave, intimidation to issue threats, or persuasion to scare them away. Each approach proves effective, though a physical altercation might ensue if intimidation is chosen.
After successfully dispelling the soldiers, the villagers express gratitude. At this juncture, players can opt to request a reward, a decision that bears consequences later in the game.
Task 2: Confronting the commander
Venturing further into the village, players encounter a commander who has trapped villagers in a building, intent on setting it ablaze. Confronting the commander initiates a battle, with victory compelling him to halt the perilous operation.
Subsequently, players must free the trapped villagers. Navigating to the designated location, individuals are found behind a door, awaiting liberation. Once again, players can choose between requesting a reward or freeing the villagers without compensation.
Impact on rewards and endgame
Choosing not to seek rewards for both tasks carries its own significance. As the castle is conquered, grateful villagers may approach Geralt, expressing gratitude and offering a reward—50 orens and a diagram of a heavy leather jacket. This outcome only materializes if both sets of villagers are freed without demanding payment.
Completing both tasks yields a collective reward of 150 experience points, contributing to Geralt’s progression. Conversely, should players opt for rewards in either task or fail to intervene altogether, the endgame narrative unfolds differently.
Failure and alternate outcomes
An additional option during confrontations allows players to abstain from interference, marking the quest as failed. Choosing this route has implications for the overarching story, influencing subsequent events.
It is crucial to note that completing one task and proceeding to find the temple results in the other task being marked as failed. Thus, players must navigate these decisions judiciously to optimize rewards and impact the narrative trajectory.
The “Woe to the Vanquished” quest in The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings encapsulates the complex decision-making inherent in the game’s narrative. Geralt’s intervention in the mistreatment of villagers not only shapes his character but also molds the course of subsequent events. Players must navigate moral dilemmas, choosing between intervention and non-interference, with each decision rippling through the fabric of the game’s narrative.