Watchguard of the Reaching is a side quest that occurs in Circle Tower during the Broken Circle main quest in Dragon Age: Origins.


Finding any of the six Apprentice's Notes will trigger the quest. Note that it is possible to start or finish the quest before leaving the tower, and after the cleansing is complete as well.


Find the notes

Begin the quest by finding any of the six apprentice's notes. On the PC version you can make this easier by pressing TAB every now and then to highlight objects (such as the containing these notes). Please see Codex Entry: Watchguard of the Reaching for full text of notes; only the first few words of each note are given here.

Ico Area Map Apprentice Quarters (the first floor)
  • In an Apprentice Footlocker in the middle of the first dormitory before you meet Wynne ("No, no, no and stop asking...").
  • In an Apprentice Footlocker on the south wall of the second dormitory before you meet Wynne ("I'm telling you guys...").
  • Apprentice Note in the middle of the room filled with bookcases, the final one before the central room with stairs to the second floor ("First Enchanter Dorval fell suddenly to a disease..."). The "x" for this one is wrong in the picture (leftmost x of first image). It should be in the middle library room.
Ico Area Map Senior Mage Quarters (the second floor)
  • In the room north of the staircase that leads to the lower floor ("Today we passed even further...").
  • In a pile of books on the floor of the room where blood mages are ambushed by an abomination ("His silver cord transmuted black...").
Ico Area Map Great Hall (the third floor)
  • In the room with the three statues ("(Hastily scribbled) Whispers say Great Hall?").

Complete the ritual

When you have the notes, go to the third floor of the Circle Tower. Right-click on the statues in the following order. Note that you can't just click anywhere, there is a very small area on the base of each statue where you will get an inspect icon. You must right-click when you see that icon.

  1. The statue holding a bowl in the Common Room
  2. The statue holding a sword pointing UP in the Common Room
  3. The statue holding a sword pointing DOWN in the Common Room
  4. The statue holding a shield in the central room (with stairs to 4th floor)

Remember you get no confirmation of your click. If you get shocked, you need to start over because you clicked too many times. In the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions, you get shocked if you've made a mistake and a burst of flame if you've done it correctly. (PC) You get a quest update on the final click.

Finish the fight

After completing the ritual, you can return to the original location where you found Wynne (on the first floor, near the spot where Petra, Keili and Kinnon are). Trying to enter the basement at this point will cause Shah Wyrd to spawn. He is similar to other Rage Demons, only much stronger, being a Boss. One thing that makes this fight easier is that Petra, Keili and Kinnon will attack the demon as well, and their spells really pack a punch.

Once the demon has appeared you can no longer activate stealth. But you can activate the stealth mode BEFORE opening the door. The demon will appear behind your character, attack and kill the 3 mages here, then get back to his spawning point and won't move as long as you stay in stealth mode. If you reappear and tease him he will chase your character around the tower but he will not fight anyone else, and no one will notice him. Don't expect Greagoir, Irving or the templars to help you.

After the combat, you can loot the demon for the unique two-handed sword Yusaris. If your goal is to obtain Yusaris, you may find it wise to save before actually fighting the demon, as the sword does not have a 100% chance of dropping (you may be able to actually search the demon twice, the first time a pile of rags, and the second time Shah Wyrd's corpse, and the second time he will have Yusaris).

Object-Statue Shield

Statue with shield.


  • The two-handed sword Yusaris
  • Malachite
  • Fluorspar
  • Quartz
  • Possibly a piece of armor, or a lyrium potion, or both

See also

Ico Tower Circle Tower
Circle Tower Side Quests
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