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Evil's First Soft Touches is the first main quest in the Hearts of Stone expansion.

Walkthrough[]

While visiting the notice board by the Seven Cats Inn you will see someone hanging a new contract on it after a short conversation you can pick it up and read it. Now go see Olgierd von Everec about the contract, when you reach the residence his "friends" will mock Geralt and you will end up fighting one of them if you mock them back. After all is said and done one of them will take Geralt to Olgierd. Apparently his cook was killed by a monster after her cousin told her there is a prince that was turned into a toad beneath the sewers of Oxenfurt, if you try to haggle he will agree to pay 450Oren3.png for the job. While leaving a woman will stop Geralt and propose to him another job if you agree this will start the Rose on a Red Field quest.

A Sewer Full of Surprises[]

Enter the Sewer through a well and use your Witcher senses to find lots of footprints, most are male, however one will be female now start following them. Soon you will meet Shani who will be trying to save some soldiers life, but Geralt will tell her he is dead. After a conversation she will "agree" to be your guide. The path is blocked but there is a breakable wall nearby, soon you will find more of the dead soldiers and Shani will tell you who had the key to the lower sewers, find it and move on. Soon you will find more bodies and Drowners, after getting rid of them Geralt will examine one of the bodies and deduce the monster likes alcohol. After fighting some more Drowners you will eventually reach the lair and Geralt will use alcohol to lure out the monster. Soon The Toad Prince will appear, and your potions/bombs will be replenished, this can be a tough fight so don't expect it to be easy just because it's the first boss of the main story. Use Cursed oil for increased damage and Tawny Owl as Yrden is very handy here, also Golden Oriole as there will be lots of poison to deal with. Dancing Star, Igni, and Northern Wind are very useful here for keeping him from jumping around, in addition to fire's notable damage to him. The Prince will hop around a lot which will push you back, however Yrden will pin him down for a bit allow you to strike it, if you have Magic Trap unlocked it will also work if it hits him, also if your sword has Replenishment then charging it with Yrden will also work. If you have Active Shield unlocked you can use it with Ancient leshen decoction to build up a massive stamina regeneration rate thus making the fight much more easy. After the Toad prince goes down to around 5% HP a cutscene will play where it turns out he really was a prince turned into a toad named Sirvat of Ofir.

We Meet Again[]

Geralt has been captured by soldiers from Ofir, obviously they aren't happy that their prince is dead and are taking Geralt to Ofir to be executed. Geralt will now be talking to a man called Phelippe Calagrande, who was their guide to try and find the prince. Guards will interrupt to feed & insult Geralt.

Note: There will be a timed dialogue choice for the chance to gain experience by correctly remembering how to say "take me to your captain" in Ofieri (the bottom option), or no experience by accidentally saying funny nonsense to them.

After Geralt gets "fed" by the soldiers Phelippe will go to sleep and Gaunter O'Dimm will appear. He will offer to help Geralt in exchange for a favor, obviously there is no other option so he will agree, Gaunter will then mark Geralt with a symbol on his face and make good on his promise, although probably not in the way Geralt was hoping for. A storm will cause the ship to crash and when Geralt wakes up he will be dragged by the soldiers, but will manage to free himself and will now be fighting the remaining soldiers and a mage. You can run away if you like or kill them, they aren't very hard to deal with, apart from the mage, just be sure to avoid his sand twister attack, also all your gear is in your inventory so you don't need to fight them half-naked. Bleeding and poison effects are very effective since he constantly disappears/teleports away.

Regardless go to Yantra to meet Gaunter, once there you will find some kids singing a very interesting song, now meditate till midnight. Gaunter will reveal to Geralt that Olgierd knew who the Toad Prince really was and that he is in debt to him too, however before he can claim it he must fulfill 3 tasks for him, but he cannot do them himself he needs someone else to do it, which is how Geralt will pay his own debt to him.

Contract Fulfilled[]

Now go meet Olgierd at the Garin Estate.

Note: If you go to Garin Estate before meeting Gaunter, you will encounter him there and he will not be happy about it. However, there are no real consequences for doing this.

As it turns out, the estate is engulfed in flames and two members of Olgierd's gang are about to kill one of their own for apparently violating the chivalric code. The first set of dialogue choices makes no difference in the outcome, but the second set of dialogue options will decide how it unfolds. Choosing either the first or third options will lead to the man being killed and you won't fight Olgierd. If you choose the second option, "let him go or face my wrath", Olgierd will challenge Geralt to a duel and the man will be spared if you win. Olgierd fights similar to Ciri in some respects, as he can teleport around and do something similar to her Charge attack. However, if you manage to strike him while he is charging at you, he will start choking, thus allowing you to make a few easy hits on him. Quen is very useful during the fight, Aard and Igni can also choke him if used when he charges.

Regardless, you will get your promised payment after the execution or fight and Gaunter will then appear. You can ask about the Toad Prince and Gaunter will reveal how it happened. After that, Olgierd will send him away and talk with Geralt, ultimately revealing the first two tasks. After this conversation concludes, Geralt will leave the estate only to find Gaunter has been waiting for him. Gaunter reveals that while he cannot complete the tasks himself, there is no rule preventing him from helping Geralt. He then gives Geralt a few tips as well as a vial of Von Everec blood. Geralt sets off to complete the first two tasks, and the quest ends. Upon completion, the Open Sesame! and Dead Man's Party quests will be added.

Journal Entry[]

When Geralt later told me the story which began at the Seven Cats Inn notice board, he mentioned he had felt drawn to that place, as if some strange, undefined force wanted him to appear there on that day and at that time. I didn't give this remark a second thought until I heard the tale to its conclusion, and realized its beginning had been no accident...
And it began like this: One day Geralt arrived at Seven Cats Inn Inn in search of his next contract. He perused the notices hanging there, yet found none to be of much interest, and was about to go on his way when a man came to nail a new parchment to the board. The notice announced a certain Olgierd von Everec, residing in the nearby Garin Estate, was looking for someone to kill a dangerous monster lurking in the Oxenfurt sewers. "Sounds like a job for me," thought Geralt, and he set off to see this Olgierd and learn more about the contract. Little did he know this was to be the beginning of a great adventure, one filled with both delightful diversions and deadly dangers...
As you might have guessed, what looked like a run-of-the-mill monster hunt, the kind Geralt had already completed countless times, turned out to be but the very tip of a very large iceberg. The first icy underwater hunk exposed itself when Geralt quite unexpectedly encountered our old friend Shani, an Oxenfurt medic, in the sewers during his hunt for the toad monster. He promised to visit her as soon as he took care of his task, and kept his promise – but not before going on quite the detour.
When Olgierd mentioned rumors floating around that the sewer monster was an enchanted prince, the thought never even occurred to Geralt to grant them any credence. When he finally found and slew the beast, he learned the error of this disbelief. Once slaughtered, the toad revealed itself to be, as rumored, a prince. Geralt was dumbstruck – partly by this surprise twist, I'm sure, but mostly by the poisonous gasses that had escaped from the toad's body and still filled the air. He was thus in no state to resist the unit of heavily armed men led by a mage which suddenly appeared and captured him.
When he next awoke, he was on a ship, imprisoned with a strange man who informed him they were bound for Ofier. There Geralt was to be executed for the crime of killing the Ofieri crown prince. Geralt was wracking his brain for a way to jump out of this pot of trouble, when, suddenly, out of the shadows came Gaunter O'Dimm, a merchant Geralt had met earlier on his path, with an offer of help. The merchant charged a high price for his assistance: he left his mark on Geralt's face and forced him to make an open-ended promise of repayment. And then... then a terrible storm broke out, flinging the ship against the rocks.
Geralt made it out of the resulting chaos unscathed and went to meet O'Dimm. The merchant asked him to carry out three wishes for the man who'd sent him after the toad, Olgierd von Everec. Willing or not, Geralt agreed, and the two set off together to the Garin estate. Once there, they discovered the manor was on fire. The witcher decided to see what was afoot.
Near the burning manor two of Olgierd's men were setting up the execution of a third.
If Geralt intervenes and saves the man's life:
Geralt decided to intervene. As soon as he did, Olgierd emerged from the manor – and did not stand idly while Geralt interfered with his orders. Instead he engaged Geralt in unrestrained combat, during which the witcher sliced off his head. This proved but a temporary setback for Olgierd, who simply placed his decapitated head back on the bloody stump of his neck.
If Geralt doesn't intervene and lets them kill the man:
When Geralt asked what the poor fellow was accused of, Olgierd emerged from the manor. They had barely begun to discuss the matter when a bereaved young woman thrust a sword into his back, blaming him for the death of her father. This grave – deadly, it would seem – wound did not bother Olgierd one bit. With the blade still stuck in his guts, he began to calmly explain to the young woman that he was not responsible for her daddy's death.
It then became crystal clear Geralt was dealing with no mere mortal.
Soon thereafter Master Mirror appeared and introduced Geralt to Olgierd, explaining the witcher would, as his assistant, carry out Olgierd's three wishes. This turn of events did not please Olgierd one bit, but he clearly had no choice but to agree and tell Geralt his wishes. For his first, he demanded Geralt bring him the house of Maximillian Borsodi [sic], and for the second, he asked Geralt to show his brother, Vlodimir von Everec, the time of his life. Geralt then turned his attentions to these labors...

Objectives[]

  • Check the notice board outside Seven Cats Inn.
  • Go see Olgierd von Everec about the contract. (150 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level)
  • If Geralt starts a fight at the estate:
    • Defeat your opponent. (150 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level)
  • Enter the Oxenfurt sewers.
  • Search the sewers using your Witcher Senses.
  • Go to the spot where the monster attacked Shani and the Redanian soldiers.
  • Find the key to the lower level of the sewers using your Witcher Senses.
  • Search the lower level of the sewers using your Witcher Senses.
  • Find the monster's lair.
  • Kill the monster. (600 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level)
  • (Optional) Defeat the Ofieri warriors. (200 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level)
  • Meet Master Mirror at midnight at the crossroads beneath the willows. (300 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level)
  • Go see Olgierd. (400 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level + 450 Oren3.png)
  • If Geralt starts a fight at the estate:
    • Defeat Olgierd.

Notes[]

  • If you go straight to the Garin Estate instead of the crossroads outside Yantra, O'Dimm will initiate a conversation with Geralt before he reaches the Estate and the dialog between Geralt and O'Dimm will have a slightly different beginning. There is also an additional comment that Geralt can make about the burning mansion.
  • Yrden Trap is extremely helpful against the toad.
  • In a conversation with ship jailors, you may choose the correct dialogue option (#3) for an additional 200 XP earned based on the Story and Swords! difficulty level

Trivia[]

  • When you first enter Garin's estate and ask to speak to Olgierd, the scene when everyone stands up claiming to be him is clearly inspired by the scene from the film Spartacus, when everyone claims to be Spartacus.
  • The sculptor of the statue Olgierd is inspecting is 'Votticelli', a reference to the Itallian rennaissance painter Botticelli
  • The duel between Olgierd and Geralt has many references to the duel between Kmicic and Wołodyjowski from the 1886 Polish novel The Deluge.
    • Michał Wołodyjowski is the best sword fighter of Poland in the novel, while Geralt is the best sword fighter of the north and both win their respective duels
    • The exchange of words between Geralt and Olgierd before their fight ("Would you wait sir, for the dribble to subside ?", "Makes no difference to me", "Justly said, Stand and fight!") which is the same as between Wołodyjowski and Kmicic only it is Wołodyjowski who makes the suggestion
    • The duel is fought over someones life, only in the novel Wołodyjowski promises Kmicic that he will be allowed to go free if he manages to best him in their duel, while in the game Olgierd promises to spare the man that was about to be killed if Geralt manages to best him
    • The duel takes place in a similar environment i.e. during the night while it's raining and torches are used to provide light, while in the game the torches are replaced with the burning estate
  • In the last scene, while speaking with O'Dimm about Borsodi's House, Geralt mentions that his "swords got almost auctioned off there once." This is in reference to an event which took place in Season of Storms.