Baldur’s Gate 3: Search The Cellar Quest Guide

Let's dive in a secret cellar to explore the darkest secrets of necromancy in Baldur's Gate 3.

Search the Cellar is a side quest you can acquire and complete within the Blighted Village area of Baldur’s Gate 3. This quest requires you to follow a chain of steps in a precise order and can be easily missed if you are not careful.

This guide will explain how to complete the quest and help you make a decision that will impact your standing with your companions. Due to his keen sense of traps and dangers, we recommend recruiting Astarion and making him an active party member.

How to start Search the Cellar quest in Baldur’s Gate 3

Once you reach the Blighted Village (West of Druid Grove), go to a broken house to the West. This house belongs to an apothecary who is also a necromancer. Hold the alt button to locate Apothecary’s Leger on a table (X: 36, Y: 383).

Right-click on the ledger and read it. It will discuss some medicines that you need to acquire from the cellar. This will add the quest Search the Cellar to your Baldur’s Gate 3 journal.

Locate and Search the Cellar

There is a wooden hatch in the same house (X: 35, Y: 377), which you can use to enter the cellar. Search the Cellar to collect some loot in BG3 and go to the Northeast corner to find three boxes stacked on each other. If you have Astarion in your party, you will easily pass the perception check.

A hidden lever is behind those boxes (X: -704, Y: -357). Move the boxes away and pull the lever. This will move a bookshelf nearby, revealing a hidden location. The next area is a sort of cave with some moldering coffins lying around.

If you go near one, an undead skeleton will emerge from it. Make sure to kill it fast, as it will raise others from the different coffins, making this fight unnecessarily difficult. The coffin behind the pillar (near the table) contains the Dark Journal. You can read it to learn more about the Necromancer and his experiments in the cellar.

Ornate Mirror Puzzle

In the farthest corner of this region, there is a magic mirror known as the Ornate Mirror. If you interact with the mirror, it will ask you some questions. If you have read the Dark Journal, you can answer its questions. Reply to Ornate Mirror with the following dialogue options.

  • Tell it your name.
  • I am an ally of your master.
  • Szass Tam is a foul and wretched creature.
  • To clean wounds.
  • I would look for a spell to eliminate the parasite in my head.

If you don’t get the options beyond the first answer, use Intimidation to make the Ornate Mirror disappear. Otherwise, it will summon an eye that will deal fire damage to your party and raise the remaining undead skeletons in the area.

Finding Necromancy of Thay and deciding its fate

In the next room, go west to find a Rusty key. There is a locked door in the east that you can open with the rusty key. You can also open it with a lockpick or use the Knock spell with the help of Gale.

An ominous-looking book is lying on the table (reminiscent of the Book of the Dead from Evil Dead). It is known as the Necromancy of Thay. All your party members except Astarion will want you to destroy it. This book is inherently evil and needs to perish. But before you follow your companions’ advice, read further the consequences of both actions.

1. Destroy the Necromancy of Thay

You only need to drop the book and then attack with holy magic to destroy it. Shadowheart has access to Guiding Bolt spells from the beginning. No other attacks will work on the Necromancy of Thay.

As you approach the book, it summons three shadows. These formidable foes can deal massive damage and debuff your attack rolls. However, they are also vulnerable to Holy Magic. The Search the Cellar quest is over once you kill the shadows and destroy the book.

2. Read Necromancy of Thay

The other option involves trying to open and read the book. However, it is easier said than done as you must find a keygem to open it. The keygem is known as Dark Amethyst and can be found in the Whispering Depths. You must defeat Phase Spider Matriarch to obtain it, a near-impossible battle in the game’s early sections.

Once you insert the dark amethyst in Necromancy of Thay, you must pass three increasingly difficult Intelligence checks (5 -> 15 -> 20) to read it. You will get the Forbidden Knowledge permanent buff (+1 on Wisdom saving throws) as a reward. You can only read the book’s final page in Act 3, which will grant you the Speak with the Dead spell as part of the Unlock the Ancient Tome side quest.


Going this route will not complete the quest, as you must read Necromancy of Thay fully in Act 3.

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Usman is an Associate Editor at Segmentnext who is obsessed with retro gaming. His love for video games begins all the way back in 91 with Final Fight on arcades and is still going strong ...