Balthazar Baldur's Gate 3
Screenshot by Prima Games.

Should You Help Balthazar in Baldur’s Gate 3 (BG3)? – Answered

Keep your enemies close.

When you get far enough into the Temple of Shar in Baldur’s Gate 3, you will eventually reach a necromancer named Balthazar who needs help looking for a relic beyond the Gauntlet. Of course, this necromancer is full of evil, so should you help Balthazar in BG3?

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Who is Balthazar?

Balthazar is one of the most evil Undead necromancers in the entire game. A servant of General Ketheric Thorm himself, Balthazar wields necromantic powers to do the most unspeakable experiments and dark rituals known to man. He’s an incredibly important NPC for the following quests: Find Ketheric Thorm’s Relic, The Chosen of Shar, Defeat Ketheric Thorm, and Find the Nightsong.

Where Can You Find Balthazar?

Balthazar can be found within the Gauntlet of Shar under the Thorm Mausoleum, more specifically, X: -840 Y:-786. It’s to the north of Reithwin in Act 2’s Shadow-Cursed Lands, just west of the Mason’s Guild. You’ll be ushered here as both a part of the main storyline and Shadowheart’s quest line.

To actually get into the Gauntlet of Shar, you’ll need to solve a puzzle involving some murals inside the entrance of the Mausoleum. Upon doing so, a door will open, and you’ll be able to descend into the Gauntlet.

The “Find Ketheric Thorm’s relic” quest should be assigned once you talk with Balthazar. You’ll have an option to help him or attack him. And while attacking him seems like the better option, you might find it more beneficial to help Balthazar.

Should You Help or Attack Balthazar in BG3?

Yes, you should help Balthazar when he initially tasks you with searching for the relic hidden within the Temple of Shar. As soon as you talk to Balthazar, he will believe you are a True Soul and trusts that you can help his cause. You can either keep talking to him or attack him on sight, but we would refrain from attacking—it’ll pay off later.

When you decide to help Balthazar in BG3, you’ll be given the opportunity to acquire the Summon Golem Bell from him, which allows you to summon a Flesh Golem to ease your Gauntlet of Shar journey. This item is exclusive to this area.

Balthazar reveals himself as a major player for Ketheric Thorm, who is at the heart of the evil in Moonrise Tower. If you’re someone that wants to help Thorm and his cause, then you would want to help Balthazar regardless, but we still recommend it for those against the Absolute. Through dialogue, Balthazar can provide some useful information as well as provide helpful materials if you pass persuasion checks.

After agreeing to help him and retrieving the relic that keeps Ketheric Thorm immune to Shadow Curse, you will be rewarded. Balthazar can provide you with a Moon Lantern, which is invaluable in getting to Moonrise Tower or searching the Shadow Cursed Lands in general. A Moon Lantern makes you immune to all levels of shadow, and the lantern even harbors a Pixie. Which means it’ll be time to decide if you should release the Pixie in Baldur’s Gate 3.

How to Fix Broken Moon Lantern in BG3

During your travels through the Underdark, you might come across some Broken Moon Lanterns in BG3. At first, these don’t do anything special but don’t throw them away yet. There’s a way you can fix them and use them to aid your trip across the Shadowlands.

In Balthazar’s Hidden Laboratory Room, which is at coordinates X:-605, Y:-1431, and just behind the Gauntlet of Shar, you’ll find the grisly remains of his sinister experiments. A few dead pixies can be found lying on the lab tables. Take one, then forge it with your broken Moon Lantern, and this should make it glow again. You can use it to avoid the curse in the Shadowlands.

How to Kill Balthazar

Screenshot of a character in Baldur's Gate 3 who is named Balthazar.
Balthazar is a formidable foe. Screenshot by Prima Games.

Once you collect your reward, you can still attack Balthazar while in the Gauntlet of Shar and take down another source of evil in the Absolute. It’s the best of both worlds and the main reason why we recommend initially helping the necromancer. Patience can provide even more rewards for your party.

Killing Balthazar in Baldur’s Gate 3 allows you to loot his body for valuable items, including the rare Circle of Bones headgear, uncommon Warped Headband of Intellect, and the level 3 Necromancy spell Animate Dead.

Circle of Bones Stats

The Circle of Bones (coordinates: X: -845 Y: -793) is a powerful piece of headgear in BG3. We love its ability to grant physical damage resistance to your teammates. Here are the stats for it down below:

  • Rarity: Rare
  • Price: 240 GP
  • Weight: 0.5kg
  • Undead Ward: Allied undead within 6m are Resistant to Bludgeoning, Slashing, and Piercing damage.
  • Animate Dead: Cast as a level 3 spell (recharges on Long Rest)

Warped Headband of Intellect Stats

Here are the stats for the Warped Headband of Intellect in BG3:

  • Weight: 0.5kg
  • Value: 270 gp
  • Increases the wearer’s Intelligence to 17

Fighting Balthazar Before or Within Shadowfell

Balthazar is no foe to be taken lightly. He is formidable and with his army of dead minions, the fight against him is difficult. We suggest saving before attacking Balthazar. He can be fought before or within Shadowfell. Here is how those fights go:

Before Shadowfell

You can first encounter Balthazar in a locked room just west of the Gauntlet of Shar waypoint. After a conversation with his undead guards out front and a battle with some Dark Justiciar Avengers, you’ll be invited into the room. This is possibly the worst place to fight him in the storyline.

If you choose to fight Balthazar in his chambers before entering Shadowfell, you will be up against Balthazar, a hoard of minions and his brother, Flesh.

  • Talk to the Duelist.
  • Complete the battle before the doors.
  • After the battle, go into the unlocked doors.
  • Set up your party and initiate the fight with Balthazar.

This fight requires no conversation and is the hardest fight against Balthazar. It is not worth fighting him before Shadowfell as you will be outnumbered.

Within Shadowfell

Screenshot of a battle in the game called Baldur's Gate 3.
There are many different platforms to use to your advantage. Screenshot by Prima Games.

Waiting to fight Balthazar will give you interesting dialogue choices before you take him to Shadowfell. You’ll get more information on the story of Balthazar and the Nightsong, as well as the Find Ketheric Thorm’s Relic quest.

Balthazar reveals that he is not the Monk Balthazar you think you’re talking to, but instead an imposter who has killed the monk and stolen his name. To help secure the relic, Balthazar will gift you a summoning bell that summons his brother, Flesh.

After killing the enemies guarding the relic, you will take Balthazar to Shadowfell and learn that the Nightsong is actually a person. She is trapped on a platform, and Ketheric Thorm is keeping her there to sustain his invulnerability. At this point you can either side with Balthazar, or choose to help Nightsong and fight Balthazar.

Fighting Balthazar within Shadowfell is more favorable than fighting him before Shadowfell. Do not end your dialogue with Balthazar before setting up the fight. There are many platforms to use to your advantage in Shadowfell. Detach available party members from the dialogue and set them up around the terrain. We recommend these companions for the fight:

  • Lae’zel: As a fighter, Lae’zel can complete Strength checks and push enemies off the edge.
  • Gale: As a wizard, Gale fight from a distance, or spam Thunderwave in the middle of the battle.
  • Shadowheart: As a cleric, Shadowheart can spam Turn Undead to make enemies around her run in fear for three turns.

Good skills and tools for this fight are Eldritch Blast, Arrow of Roaring Thunder and anything that knocks away enemies.

Tip:

To instantly end the fight, you can shove Balthazar off the platform and into the void during your party’s dialogue. Doing so is a great way to avoid a potentially messy fight. Any ability with knockback or an Arrow of Roaring Thunder can do the trick.

If you decide to knock Balthazar off the ledge, you will end the fight, but miss out on the loot he drops. Here is a list of the loot he drops upon killing him the normal way:

  • Three Speak with Dead scrolls.
  • A dagger.
  • Circle of Bones: rare headgear.
  • A book about Soul Cage Research.

The loot is low tier except for the Circle of Bones headgear. Ultimately, knocking Balthazar into the Shadowfell’s void is the funniest way to go, and that’s worth more than the loot he drops!

What Happens if You Let Balthazar Take the Nightsong?

To be clear, unless you’re playing an evil run and want to help Thorm, we still recommend killing Balthazar before leaving Shadowfell whether or not you decided to help him. If you end up handing the Nightsong over to Balthazar and neglect to kill him, you’ll end up with some unfavorable consequences.

For one, Shadowheart will have some unkind words for you and permanently abandon the party. For two, you’ll be placed in a difficult position upon meeting Ketheric Thorm. Ultimately, you’ll end up imprisoned in a weird fleshy chamber and at the hands of Balthazar, who will be tasked with taking the Astral Prism from you. It’s not a good look.

But hey, if you do kill BG3’s Balthazar, you’ll need to decide what to do with the Nightsong next.


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Daniel Wenerowicz
Dan has been writing gaming guides, news, and features for three years after graduating with a BA in writing . You can find him covering Call of Duty for eternity, action-adventure games, and nearly any other major release.
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Dominique McClain
Dominique' McClain is a passionate writer on anything Esports and video games. She has 4+ years of experience covering games in the industry and enjoys Overwatch 2, Fortnite, and Elden Ring.
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Seth Lowe
Seth has been a writer for Prima Games since 2023. An avid Nintendo lover and a true Pokemon master, surely you'll find him glued to a Game Boy no matter where he is. You can find his previous work at TheGamer.