Dragon Age: Origins Walkthrough - Dalish Elf Origins Story
We're starting off as a wild elf this time. Your Dalish tribe is apparently right next to a bit of the darkspawn menace. You need to explore a new cave and then go back in for another mission. If you need any help with the traps, the spiders, or the darkspawn, then look here.
Exploring the Cave
We get off to a quick start. It seems that a few humans are in our neck of the woods. Ask them a few question to find out about the new cave that they discovered nearby and that it apparently has a demon inside it. Naturally your friend, Tamlen, wants to investigate it. You can make your own decision on what to do about the humans. It's mainly a role playing thing.
When you're ready, start moving down the circular path until you run right into 2 wolves. Just cut them down. As a side note, your character already has an archer and melee weapon set equipped. Just flip back and forth between "/" if you want. You can also do it in the inventory screen. Look at the dead elk thing behind them. This Halla will add a note to your codex and give you some experience. The rotten stump ahead will do the same. Keep going until you reach the cave itself.
Head on inside and go into the main chamber. 2 giant spiders will drop down right on top of you. Just slice them up. They aren't too tough, even if they manage to trap you in a web. Go ahead and search the cocoon and the pile of bones. There's a chest too, if you can lockpick it. Go ahead forward to the split in the path. We'll go into the room on the right. There's a flame trap by the door, so don't just stand there if you trigger it. Move out of the flame and you'll barely have a scratch on you.
There are 3 spiders in here. Go ahead and kill them. Search the cocoon and bone piles for loot. If you want, you can head through the door in the wall down to the other chamber that we would have visited if we'd gone to the left. There are 2 pressure plate traps linked to fireballs though. These do about 60 points of damage, so wait a moment to heal after getting hit. The 3 spiders inside shouldn't be a problem.
There's a few things to loot in the left chamber and a door to try and pick, but not much else. The path at the back of the right chamber leads to our goal. We need to move over until Tamlen stops and points out the fancy elf statue. We're almost at the big finish. It seems like the only good way to open the door is to trigger the acid trap. It unlocks afterwards for whatever reason. Run away from it to avoid the damage. 2 skeletons come to life too. They aren't hard to kill, if you can avoid the acid. Just focus on one and then kill the other.
Rest and heal, then open the door and fight the boss. This thing is called Bereskarn. He's actually not that tough. Just gang up on him and he'll die. He's got a tough overwhelm attack, but that's about it. Once that's done, check the room for another chest, some bones, and a very odd mirror.
The Dalish Camp
After that long exploration in the cave, we have to figure out what happened. Duncan dragged you back to the camp, but it looks like Tamlen in gone. We have a bit of work to do before we mount our little rescue op. Talk to the Keeper and get your instructions. You can also learn some history.
There's a lot to see here. If you look at the skulls on the huts in the camp, you can usually get a codex. The statue outside the halla pen also gives you one. You can talk to Fenarel and he'll offer to join you. Go ahead and accept. You can try to lie to Merrill or scare her into taking him with, but that's a little pointless. You can just talk to the Keeper and she'll grant you permission.
Ilen, the bowmaker, is over in a little training ground offshoot. You can use persuasion to get a free bow. You can also talk to Paivel Hahren now and help or ruin his story to the children. He's by the main fire. There are also a ton of chests you can lockpick. You should probably also talk to a woman named Ashalle. She's at a campfire past the Halla pen. You can persuade her to tell you about your parents. She'll give you a key to one of the chests if you do. It's worth a shot at least.
Merrill is at the end of the path. Just talk to her and tell her when you're ready to go out to the cave again.
Into the Jaws of Death Again
This is the exact same path that we took before. There are now darkspawn on it though. They're just genlocks, so no worries. They aren't even as tough as giant spiders. Move up and rush the 2 archers across from you to interrupt their shots. Move past and advance to the ruins. There should be a group of 3 in your way, but they won't be a challenge.
Take your party into the ruins and note that the whole place is full of darkspawn corpses. It looks like Duncan has been busy. Move forward and into the right chamber once again. The door trap is active again, so make sure that no one stands over it if you trip it. Rush inside the room and kill the genlocks in here. Heal up and push down the route again. There are a whole bunch of bear traps set up now though, so you might get stuck for a moment. Just wait it out. Turn the corner and kill the few genlocks here. The big opponent is the genlock emissary. This mage is pretty tough, so do a melee rush to pin him down. Merrill should do plenty of damage after that.
Move on into the chamber with the mirror to meet back up with Duncan. Talk to him to learn about the mirror and trigger it's destruction. Duncan will ask you if to head back to camp with him. You should probably turn him down though and ask to search for Tamlen. There's a new sarcophagus in the back corner along with a new area behind the mirror. You can climb the slope to get to a new locked chest in back. There's also a strange statue in back. If you use it, it will bring the skeletons to life. It's not too hard of a fight, and you might want to do it for the experience. When you're ready to leave, backtrack out.
Once you're back in the camp, you're basically done. Duncan will stop to talk to the Keeper about your condition. We need to talk to Paivel over by the fire. Ask him to do the ceremony. Duncan will be back out, so talk to him to learn your fate. We're now ready to join the main quest line in Ostagar.