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High Stakes is a secondary quest in Novigrad. It requires entering a Gwent tournament in Passiflora. A strong deck is needed, as well as an entry fee of 1000 Oren3.

Consider finishing the Old Pals and Big City Players quests to build a stronger deck before doing this quest.  You will not have an opportunity to leave the area and strengthen your deck once you sign up for the tournament; if you stray too far from the Passiflora, the quest will fail. Although winning these matches is not required to complete this quest, it is the only way to obtain certain leader cards.

Players


Walkthrough

Read the notice on the notice board near St. Gregory's Bridge in Novigrad to begin the quest.  Head to the Passiflora and speak to the scribe to enter the tournament. After the Passiflora is cleared of its regular guests, Geralt has an opportunity to speak with some of the other tournament participants, notably Sasha.  From there, the tournament begins.

Note: You do not have to win the tournament, or any of the matches, to complete the quest. If you lose at any point in the tournament, but agree to help Sasha, the tournament will skip to the end of the final round.

​​​​Gwent Tournament

Geralt's first opponent is Bernard Tulle, who uses a Northern Realms deck. Regardless of whether Geralt wins or loses his match with Tulle, Sasha will approach Geralt after the match and suggest that they work together to get the prize money. She does not provide any details regarding her plan, and instead only tells him that he should stay until the end of the tournament. Geralt agrees, and the tournament will resume.

If you defeated Tulle, your next opponent will be Sasha. She is the toughest opponent in the tournament, if not the entire game, with her Nilfgaardian deck. She plays a very strong spy-themed deck which is also filled with high-strength unit cards and an entire roster of Nilfgaard and neutral heroes. You should also be wary that she has several scorch cards in her deck. Counter her with a lot of decoys and spy cards; keep the unit cards in the deck as close to 22 as possible and with the highest possible unit strength. The White Flame leader card is useful for countering her unique leader card which draws a unit card from the player's discard pile for her own use. It is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED players make a save if they wish to win the tournament outright, otherwise Sasha beats Tybalt in the final round. She can be romanced if Geralt agrees to her proposition.

If you defeat Sasha, you will move immediately to the next round where you will face ​​​​​​Finneas, who uses a Scoia'tael deck. Unfortunately, there is no opportunity to save your game in between these two opponents. If you beat him, he will be enraged and engage you in a fist fight.  Defeat him and move on to the final round of the tournament.

​Your final opponent will be Count Tybalt, who uses a strong Monster deck.

To Catch a Thief

When the final match ends, regardless of who wins, the scribe will announce that the prize money has been stolen.  Sasha assures Geralt that she was not the thief, and that they should work together to reclaim the prize money.  She talks their way past the guard and up to the second floor.  Use your witcher senses to inspect the crime scene. Examine a bolt on the terrance and then head outside to look for more clues.  Follow the strange scent to a crate on the road. Sasha recognizes the guild seal on the on the crate, and tells Geralt to meet her at a warehouse on the docks.

Once at the warehouse, Sasha tells Geralt that the door is locked.  Go to the back of the warehouse to find another way in.  Along the way, Geralt will spot the wagon used by the thieves and note that it has the same scent.  Climb up the wooden scaffolding at the rear of the building, and enter the warehouse through the window. Approach the group of men to find the thief, Bernard Tulle. After a short conversation, you will have to fight Tulle and his henchmen.

After defeating Tulle, Sasha invites Geralt to dinner at the Kingfisher. You can either decline, which completes the quest, or accept the invitation, which provides you the opportunity to romance Sasha. If you romance her, she will leave Geralt while he is asleep, and leave him a ​​note on the pillow.  The quest concludes, and you receive 45 XP​ and 4500 Oren3.

Journal Entry

Geralt is hardly an ace gambler. He has had a few good runs in dice poker tournaments, true, but these were always local affairs against opponents whose skill level left much to be desired. A tournament in the world's greatest metropolis - now that was a horse of an entirely different color. The high entry fee and stringent deck requirements scared off amateurs, so only wealthy professionals had signed up. Everything was in place for play at a high level in exciting company - in other words, my friends, for pure pleasure.
It started with an indecent proposal. Sasha, one of the participants in the tournament, made Geralt a proposition so brazen even his jaded jaw dropped: together they were to steal the coin set aside as the tournament's prize.
Perhaps Geralt would even have been tempted by Sasha's proposition. Before he could accept or reject it, however, another double dealer made his presence known. While they were talking one of the participants stole the coin set aside for the reward, beating Sasha to the punch.
A halfling by the name of Bernard turned out to be the thief. This supposed farmer took the coin and hid with it in one of the city's warehouses. The witcher raced after him and defeated him in a final showdown.
As for Sasha, she turned out to be a Nilfgaardian agent known as Cantarella. Her cover blown, she had needed the coin so that she could skip town. As part of my duties as a chronicler I must note that before she left, she spent a night with the witcher, conducting various covert operations until the break of dawn.
If Geralt loses (or draws) to an opponent:
Yet Geralt did not manage to garner the tournament's grand prize. Such is life - you can't win them all, sadly. Geralt could only hope luck's cruelty at cards meant she would shower him with good fortune when it came to love.

Objectives

  • Find the scribe in the Passiflora and sign up for the high-stakes tournament.
  • Talk to the scribe.
  • Mingle with the other contestants.
  • Win your match against Bernard Tulle.
  • Meet Sasha on the balcony.
  • Return to the common room.
  • Win against Sasha.
  • Win against Finneas.
  • Defeat Finneas.
  • Win against Count Tybalt.
  • Follow the guard to the crime scene.
  • Investigate the crime scene using your Witcher Senses.
  • Check for clues behind the brothel using your Witcher Senses.
  • Use your Witcher Senses to see where the scent leads to.
  • Meet Sasha at the warehouse.
  • Find a way to get into the warehouse.
  • Climb up into the warehouse.
  • Check what's going on.
  • Defeat Bernard and his goons.

Notes

  • If you play against Sasha with your own Nilfgaardian Empire Gwent deck and go blow for blow using Spies and then, Decoys and Medics to reuse and/or revive the Spies you may reach a point where you, she or both of you run out of cards from your respective decks.
  • The quest follows a somewhat different course if you refuse Sasha's scheme or lose a round at Gwent, but since those both lead to sub-par rewards, they should be discounted as less than ideal ways to complete this quest, and are not worthy of mention.
  • The quest Geralt is telling Sasha about, during their dinner date, is the quest "Blue Eyes" from The Witcher. A member of the Order of the Flaming Rose (a militant branch of the cult of the Eternal Fire) asked you to look for his sister, who had taken up working at a brothel run by vampires.
  • Once done, you will also receive the achievement Gwent Master.
  • If you complete this quest after finishing A Matter of Life and Death but before Now or Never, dining with Sasha will cause you to be stuck inside the Kingfisher Inn and the only way to leave is by jumping from a balcony.
  • Accepting Sasha's proposition at the end of the quest will not have any impact on your romance options with Triss or Yennefer.
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