Warden's Keep is downloadable content available on the Xbox Live Marketplace, the PlayStation Store, and BioWare's official site for the PC. It is included in the Digital Deluxe Edition and the Ultimate Edition.
Warden's Keep grants players access to the fortress of Soldier's Peak, a quest to unlock the mysteries of the fortress, two new talents/spells for each class from the Power of Blood school, two achievements, and various items. In addition, Warden's Keep includes two new merchants and a Party Storage Chest that allows the player to store additional inventory.
Centuries before the events of Dragon Age: Origins, the Grey Wardens of Ferelden took up arms against their kingdom's rulers. This tumultuous event led to the expulsion of the Grey Wardens from Ferelden, leaving their ancient fortress of Soldier's Peak to the ravages of time. This downloadable content provides the Warden with an opportunity to aid Levi Dryden in redeeming his family name by proving that Sophia Dryden, his great great grandmother and commander of the Grey Wardens at Soldier's Peak, acted honorably.
- Main article: Soldier's Peak (quest)
The highlight of this downloadable content is the fortress of Soldier's Peak and the eponymous quest. The quest takes the Warden through the forgotten keep, where the restless spirits of the Grey Wardens who died there re-enact the moments of their deaths. The keep is also plagued with undead wardens and soldiers, and demons left behind which were summoned during the battle. The Warden uncovers the motivation behind Sophia Dryden's treasonous rebellion against King Arland from the Demon that possesses her corpse, and within the castle's tower, an ancient Grey Warden Blood Mage, Avernus, works to repair the damage in the veil.
The Warden can choose to free the demon into the world by slaying Avernus, or to destroy the demon. The Warden must also seal the veil, with or without the demon's help, preventing more demons from entering the keep and laying its spirits to rest.
Soon thereafter, Levi Dryden and his family move into Soldier's Peak, preparing the keep as their new trading outpost and setting up a smithy.
- Main article: Ancient History
On a desk in Avernus' study - the final chamber before the room where the Warden encounters Avernus himself - is a jar containing an "Alchemical Concoction". A journal documenting Avernus's experiments lies on another desk nearby; reading it triggers the final cut scene, which reveals he was learning how to tap the power of the Darkspawn blood ingested by Grey Wardens during the Joining.
If the Warden interacts with the jar before reading the journal, the jar is unidentifiable; only if the Warden triggers the cut scene will they realise it is the final fruit of Avernus' horrific research. Whether or not the Warden knows what the jar is, drinking it unlocks the Power of Blood talents, as well as the Diabolist achievement.
Party members do not seem to react to any of the Warden's decisions.
Once the quest is completed, the Dryden family will set up shop outside the Keep. Two merchants will be available, and they give the best discount in the game (better than the dwarves at your party camp). Levi Dryden's brother, Mikhael Dryden, is a smith, and has every conceivable non-magical weapon and armor for sale.
Meteor Metal Ore
- Main article: Meteor Metal Ore
- Main article: Items (Warden's Keep)
- - an above average Crossbow.
- - the longsword of the Grey Warden Asturian.
- - a robe that improves Blood Magic.
- - a belt that reduces hostility.
- - a two-handed greatsword. (or)
- - a longsword.
- - set of armor once worn by Warden Commanders.
- - a shield with a low random drop chance identical to Duncan's Shield.
- - a powerful magical staff.
- Codex entry: A Letter From Bann Mathuin Wulff
- Codex entry: A Plea from Commander Athlar
- Codex entry: Avernus's Notes
- Codex entry: Sophia Dryden
- Codex entry: Sophia Dryden's Journal
- Codex entry: The History of Soldier's Peak: Chapter 1
- Codex entry: The History of Soldier's Peak: Chapter 2
- Codex entry: The History of Soldier's Peak: Chapter 3
- Codex entry: The History of Soldier's Peak: Chapter 4
- Codex entry: The History of the Drydens
Power of Blood abilities
| Dark Sustenance
|A self-inflicted wound lets the mage draw from the power of tainted blood, rapidly regenerating a significant amount of mana but taking a small hit to health.|
| Bloody Grasp
|The mage's own tainted blood becomes a weapon, sapping the caster's health slightly but inflicting spirit damage on the target. Darkspawn targets suffer additional damage for a short period.|
| Dark Passage
||Passive||Tapping the power of tainted blood makes the rogue more nimble, able to move more quickly while using Stealth and more likely to dodge a physical attack.|
| The Tainted Blade
|The rogue's blood gushes forth, coating the edges of weapons with a deadly taint. The character gains a bonus to damage determined by the cunning attribute, but suffers continuously depleting health in return.|
| Blood Thirst
||Sustained||The warriors own tainted blood spills in sacrifice, increasing movement speed, attack speed and critical hit-chance. For as long as this mode is active, however, the warrior suffers greater damage and continuously diminishing health.|
| Blood Fury
|The warrior sprays tainted blood in order to knock back nearby enemies, which they may resist by passing a physical resistance check. The gush of blood, however, results in a loss of personal health.|
Achievements and trophies
Name Requirement Achievement Points Trophy Type Image Master of the Peak Completed "Soldier's Peak" 25 Bronze Diabolist Took advantage of Avernus's research 25 Bronze
- xbox360 Sometimes the player may not be able to look at weapon/armor/accessories stats while playing through the DLC. This can be fixed by reloading a save.
- If the player or a companion levels during the first fight with the demons on the second floor, the door into the next room (the Shrine) will stay locked, and the only way to complete the quest will be reverting to a prior save.
- After completing the keep, it is possible to zone back into the tower and then back again; Levi has dialogue meant for later.
- Occasionally, the trade option will not bring up the trade screen.
- Sometimes the location on the map disappears along with items found (this is probably due to the deactivated status of the DLC). If that happens, just quit and restart the game.
- On rare occasions, the player might face 9 undead skeletons instead of the Archivist and the two rage demons; if this happens the Warden Scribe will drop a heavy metal shield with the Warden-Commander emblem on it, comparable in looks to the Grey Warden Tower Shield without the stats. At first it may appear to be invisible, in which case the player should try re-equipping the shield.
- After killing Avernus, in some cases you may find that once the cut scene completes, enemies are detected in another room, which may require opening the door prior to fighting them. Once battle mode commences, doors cannot be opened, and there is no way to escape battle mode without resorting to a save, due to the room being too small to get far back enough to dis-alert the party. This can be averted by quickly opening the door before battle mode kicks in. On the PS3 the player can simply press up on the D-Pad to focus on the door during combat allowing you to open the door and attack the enemies that have spawned. When that is done, the battle mode ends and you will be free to leave the area.
- pcDuring the scene of repairing the Veil, it may happen that the demons that should emerge never do. The NPC who is commencing the repair just moves to the side and does nothing. Using a non-character targeting effect (e.g. fireball) to knock Sophia/Avernus into the ritual circle she/he was heading towards begins the sealing ritual and the demons begin to emerge.
- Another solution is to exit the area through the door to the bridge, then toggle graphical options such as "Frame buffer effects", "V-Sync" and "Anti-aliasing". Return to the area and after the cutscene, battle should progress. Some users report altering resolution also helps.
- You can also use the console cheats and type "runscript zz_gwb_debug" without the quotes, then choose "make jump to" > "warden keep (repaired)" and that will fix/teleport you to the end of the DLC but will not complete the quest line.
- A alterative console command option is to use "runscript rubberband" without quotes to restart the NPC's path and unstick them from the geometry.
- Speaking to a party member as the cutscene ends will sometimes cause the NPC to complete the path.
- ps3xbox360 If you place an item in the storage chest, leave and then return, there is a chance for non-unique items to change their properties; e.g., an Iron Longsword may transmute into a Silverite Longsword, etc.
- Levi Dryden is also present in the game before the DLC is installed and talking to him will let you purchase and download the DLC through dialogue choices. This has been criticized as breaking immersion - for example, in the Penny Arcade comic of 6th November, 2009. (The comic is also notable in that the Grey Warden in the comic named Dog "Barkspawn", and Bioware later referenced this in The Darkspawn Chronicles.)
- If the Warden returns to the cleared keep with Shale as a party member, there will be a group of three ravens on the ground who hop around and follow Shale. It's not possible to interact with them, but anytime Shale moves the ravens are quick to follow.
- In Dragon Age II, it is possible to find Avernus's research on a dead body on The Wounded Coast. There is a potion which will grant 2 attribute points upon drinking.
- In Dragon Age II, if you let Sophia go in the previous imported save, you will meet her again in the quest Terror on the Coast.