Vigil's Keep, informally known as the Vigil, is an ancient fortress in the Arling of Amaranthine, in north-east Ferelden. It was formerly the seat of the Howe family and is now the Grey Wardens' main base in Ferelden.
Vigil's Keep is one of the oldest settlements in Ferelden, older than Denerim and Gwaren. The barbarians who battled the Tevinter Imperium chose this location for a fortress so that their warning fires would be visible at great distance, when Tevinter ships neared the coast.
The fortress was built by Alamarri Avvars to stop the Tevinter advance from the North. In their time it was known as the Fort of a Thousand Vigils. It was built over caves leading to the Deep Roads, believed to be carved as a gift from Korth, an Avvarian god of mountains.
The Avvars residing in the fortress lived peacefully with the dwarves, which was unusual as the dwarves were allied with their enemy, the Tevinters. The alliance of Avvars and dwarves predates building the fortress. The dwarves helped the Avvars defeat and bind a dangerous shade called the Dark Theurge, who was previously one of their own, Ruadan.
As the Avvar culture declined, the ownership of the keep changed, eventually becoming the property of the Fereldan noble Howe family from which they governed the entire Arling of Amaranthine.
Vigil's Keep was the first fortress to fall during the Orlesian invasion in Ferelden and the last to be liberated during the Fereldan Rebellion. It is probably also the place where Prince Maric Theirin met Byron Howe in order to thank him for his support of the rebellion.
In 9:31 Dragon, after Arl Rendon Howe disgraced his family during the Fifth Blight, the Howes were stripped of all their holdings, including Vigil's Keep. The keep itself was then run by Fereldan soldiers. The last soldier to be in charge of the keep was Lieutenant Gable. The stronghold became a temporary base for Orlesian Grey Wardens who were helping Ferelden in the aftermath of the Blight, killing darkspawn stragglers.
In the month of Ferventis of the same year, the keep was officially given to the Grey Wardens by the Fereldan monarchy along with the rest of the Arling. The Warden-Commander was appointed to re-establish the Grey Wardens presence in Ferelden, using Vigil's Keep as the order's main base.
The keep was assaulted by the Architect's disciples who either killed or kidnapped all of the Grey Wardens stationed there. It was a surprise attack on the day the keep was to be officially handed over to the Warden-Commander. The darkspawn entered the keep from a Deep Roads entrance located in the basement. The Deep Roads run deep underneath the keep.
The Warden-Commander may investigate the Deep Roads and, with the help of Voldrik Glavonak, shut the access to the keep. The Warden-Commander may also upgrade the walls of the keep, also through the help of Voldrik.
If the Warden-Commander decides to save Amaranthine instead of Vigil's Keep, it is destroyed by the Mother's invading darkspawn army. Depending on player choices, the Keep may be rebuilt completely within five years. If the Warden-Commander decides to protect the Vigil, instead, their victory during the siege becomes one of the most important and famous military victories in the history of the Grey Warden Order.If the Warden-Commander invested in silverite armor for the Vigil's soldiers, they eventually come to be known as the Silver Order. Under the tutelage of the Wardens, the Silver Order developed into one of Ferelden's most revered military forces, a lasting memory of the Vigil's famous commander.
- Keep Interior
- Vigil's Keep - Throne Room
- Vigil's Keep - Dungeon
- Vigil's Keep - Deep Roads
- Vigil's Keep - Basement
- The Assault on Vigil's Keep
- The Survivors of Vigil's Keep
- Bombs Away!
- Cost of Doing Business
- It Comes From Beneath
- What is Built Endures
- The Siege of Vigil's Keep
- Ambassador Cera
- Lieutenant Gable
- Captain Garevel
- Dworkin Glavonak
- Voldrik Glavonak
- Sergeant Maverlies
- Seneschal Varel
- Mistress Woolsey
- Alec (if he was conscripted into the keep's army during A Day In Court)
- Armaas (if he was asked to trade at the keep during Trade Must Flow)
- Lillith (if she was rescued at the Abandoned Farm)
- Groundskeeper Samuel (if Nathaniel Howe joined the Grey Wardens)
Upgrading the Keep
The Keep can be upgraded in the following ways.
The following have the largest effect on the ending:
- Completing Cost of Doing Business rebuilds the gatehouse.
- Completing What is Built Endures upgrades the walls and gatehouse and replaces a nearby palisade with a stone wall.
- Completing It Comes From Beneath protects the keep from attack by way of the Deep Roads.
- Completing Elemental Requirements improves your soldiers' armor.
Recruiting merchants for the quest Trade Must Flow allows for new items to be available for purchase:
- Lillith - is recruited during the Abandoned Farm encounter.
- Armaas - can be found near the end of the Silverite Mine.
- Statue - initiates dialog with Velanna and Anders
- Kitten - initiates dialog allowing it to be taken as a gift for Anders
- Codex entry: The Great Strife
- Codex entry: Vassals and their Liege
- Codex entry: Ancient Vows
- Codex entry: The Vigil
- The east side of the Keep (where the kitten is found wandering) has two locked chests and a wooden crate. These periodically respawn containing new items.