Poor Astarion has had it hard. And he channels much of those decades worth of trauma, abuse, and manipulation into being the most snarky High Elf alive. But when it comes to actually helping reach the end of his character arc, you’ll be faced with a bevy of choices. Here’s the consequence for every choice you can make with Asterion in Cazador’s Dungeon.
Baldur’s Gate 3: All Possible Choices and Outcomes for Astarion and Cazador (BG3)
Before we get into this, expect quite a few spoilers.
Astarion’s quest leads you to the home of his Master, Cazador, in the Lower City. If you make your way into Cazador’s Dungeon, you’ll have to fight Cazador and a few of his minions. But once they’re taken out, you’ll face a pretty significant choice. If you have a particular one in mind, jump to it using the table of contents below.
Table of Contents
- Allow Asterion to Ascend
- Refuse to Help Astarion
- Persuade Astarion into Not Ascending
- Release the Vampire Spawn
- Kill All the Vampire Spawn
What Happens if you Allow Astarion to Ascend
Once you arrive to the scene of the ritual, Astarion will be overcome by the years of trauma and hatred he has for Cazador. And he seems to lose himself in it, wanting more than anything to have the power that Cazador seeks. If only to protect himself from fear and pain.
But if you give Astarion the go-ahead to ascend, you’ll get big disapproval ratings from your two other party members (even Lae’zel will say this is wrong). Astarion’s “brothers and sisters” will explode, as will Cazador, who takes Astarion’s place in the ritual, and the seven thousand spawn trapped in the cells below.
The cinematography for this cutscene is also very ominous, making it pretty clear that this is the “evil” ending.
In return, Astarion will feel very powerful. And he’ll gain a new ability: Vampire Ascendant. This will let Astarion take on Gaseous Form (much like Cazador does during his fight), gives his unarmed attack Necrotic Damage, and gives him the new move, Ascendant Bite.
And… that’s it. Despite Astarion’s very blood being changed, supposedly, he receives no other stat boosts, passives, or distinguishers.
What Happens if you Refuse to Help Astarion
This is, somehow, even worse than the Ascension ending.
Astarion will ask for your help. If you reject him the first time, he’ll beg. And if you reject him again, he’ll absolutely brutalize Cardoza with a knife. Following that, he’ll sob and have a bit of a breakdown.
But once he recovers, he’ll leave all the spawn in the cells, destroy Cardoza’s staff (preventing you from looting it later), and then tells you he hopes you die screaming. He’ll then leave your party permanently.
When you speak to Ulma at the front of the dungeon, she’ll be happy that the spawn are still in the cells and grateful that you give her the choice about whether to kill them or not. So, silver lining, I guess?
What Happens if you Persuade Astarion into Not Ascending
This has to be the “canonical” good ending.
It can be triggered by telling Astarion that he shouldn’t do the ritual because it will kill all the spawn in the cages or by telling him that the ritual will consume him.
You can persuade him outright, or use Insight to find out that he’s absolutely full of fear and the lust for power. Passing the Insight check, which requires 20 or better, will then trigger two new Persuasion options. These options require you to roll a 15.
If you pass it, you’ll get approval from Astarion. He’ll still kill Cardoza by stabbing him a lot. At this point you’ll get an update to your Gather Your Allies quest (if you have it, though it also works retroactively).
You’ll then be faced with the decision of whether to release the spawn or kill them.
Either way, when you go back to camp and rest, Astarion will want to speak with you. He’ll thank you for talking him out of ascending and you’ll get +5~ affection points.
What Happens if you Release the Spawn
If you opt to release the prisoners, they’ll wander out of the cells. Astarion’s “brothers and sisters” will then be tasked with taking care of them in the Underdark, where you can encounter them later.
Ulma, from the Gur Tribe, will confront you as you try to leave the dungeon. She’ll be annoyed that you let them free, but she’ll reserve judgment until she sees how the spawn behave. After all, those spawn are the Gur Tribe’s children.
What Happens if you Kill the Spawn
Astarion’s siblings will push back on your decision. They’ll then explode like blood boils. Pretty much everyone around you hates this option, except for Ulma from the Gur Tribe. At least… until she realizes that all those spawn were the Gur Tribe children.
But if you let Astarion speak by choosing the ‘Stay silent’ option, Ulma will realize that Astarion has done her a great kindness. The Gur Tribe will then stand with you in the battle to come.
Really, there’s no perfect “win” here. Choosing to help Astarion in any capacity will net you both Woe, a staff, and Rhapsody, a dagger. So, go with what feels best for your run. Except for rejecting Astarion outright, I guess.
If you want a choice that’s much cleaner, why not save a child before she’s consumed by a monster?