Least Favorite Quest: “The Last Holdouts”
(art by runaire)
In Act 2, Anders tells Hawke that he is working with the Mage Underground, a secret organization of apostates that help free mages trapped in the Gallows. And while Anders did not form the Underground, it’s clear that over the past four years, he has become a major player within it; he even mentions personally leading dozens of mages to freedom using its resources.
But by Act 3, the Underground is all but gone, its members scattered and its secret hiding places destroyed.
A pro-mage Hawke never gets a clear answer. But a pro-Templar Hawke…
“The Last Holdouts”, which spawns only for a Hawke who sides with Meredith in the Act 3 opener, is an easily overlooked (and depressingly short) sidequest that sheds light on the exact fate of the formidable Mage Underground.
It’s also one of many cases where your actions subtly but definitively influence DA2’s meta-narrative. Only a pro-Templar Hawke can spawn this quest, because only a pro-Templar Hawke would be in a position to make events unfold they way they do. Although the Mage Underground is dismantled either way, none of what happens in “The Last Holdouts” comes to pass for a pro-Mage Hawke.
I realize I’m being vague. So let me be clearer.
In a pro-Templar Hawke game, what happened to Anders’s beloved Mage Underground?
Who removed the last hope Anders had for defying Meredith without bloodshed?
In case you’ve never gotten or completed this quest, I’ve transcribed a walk-through of the major dialogue/action/notes below the break.