Pillars of Eternity Stronghold Upgrades, Hirelings, Adventures, Prisoners, Bounties

The Stronghold or Caed Nua in Pillars of Eternity is the game’s main hub that you will use to carry out different operations. It is essentially your ‘safe haven’, and a place you can call your own home and rule over.

Pillars of Eternity Stronghold

The Caed Nua isn’t available from the get-go – it has to be found and taken charge of by completing a quest relatively early on in the game. However, that’s merely the begin; managing the Stronghold is a task that requires time and effort, as the place is massive, and has a lot to offer.

Quickly enough, it becomes one of the most intriguing and absorbing game mechanics in the game. This guide will help you get acquainted with all the requirements and necessities of the Stronghold, its upgrades, and the different key options that these upgrades provide to make your Pillars of Eternity experience better.


The Stronghold is located in the Eastern Reach north of Defiance Bay, directly above the Endless Paths of Od Nua.

You’ll be able to access it by completing the Stewards quest fairly early in the game. Once you complete the quest, the Stronghold will basically be your rally point and hub. When you gain possession of the Stronghold, it will be old and out of shape.

You will need to work with the Steward to get it into working shape. This is primarily done through Upgrades, and there are plenty of them (see the Upgrades section). These will open up new activities and quests for you to take participation in, making the Stronghold a very large part of the game.

More importantly, improving the Stronghold and maintaining a good prestige will get you to have people in it, and you can collect taxes and earn profit. This is a great way to get rid of money issues for the longest term.

Additionally, Stronghold will unlock specific quests and rare items that you wouldn’t find anywhere else.

Stronghold Upgrades

Stronghold Upgrades are of wide variety, and are extremely important if you want to take maximum advantage of the place.

In addition to adding prestige, they will also fortify the Stronghold and will allow you to fend off any potential attacks from foreign invaders and hostiles.

Stronghold upgrades will also allow you to acquire resting bonuses; have additional quests for idle companions; increase the land you own, hence increasing the amount of tax you collect; grant you specific ingredients, and grant additional storage.

All the upgrades in the Stronghold, along with their description, pricing, and Prestige/Security bonuses are listed below!

Upgrade Description Prestige Security Price Availability
Warden’s Lodge Survival resting bonus and bounties 2 2
Main Keep Needed for visitors and adventures 3 4
Eastern Barbican Bars passage to Woodend Plains 1 2
Forum Intellect resting bonus 4 0 1200 cp 2 days
Dungeons NPCs as prisoners after defetaing them 0 0 1200 cp 3 days
Hedge Maze Stealth resting bonus 0 3 1400 cp 2 days
Merchant Stalls Access to a merchant 0 0 1400 cp 2 days
Training grounds Might resting bonus 0 2 1500 cp 2 days
Training grounds Might resting bonus 0 2 1500 cp 2 days
Woodland Trails Athletics and Constitution resting bonus 1 2 1500 cp 3 days
Artificier’s Hall Mechanics resting bonus 1 0 1600 cp 2 days
Craft Hall Dexterity resting bonus 1 1 1600 cp 2 days
Brighthollow Courtyard Pool Repair Pool 1 0 1600 cp 1 day
Brighthollow Hearth Restore Order to Keep 1 0 1600 cp 1 day
Botanical gardens Creates plants every turn 1 0 1800 cp 2 days
Curio shop Produces creature parts every turn 1 0 1800 cp 2 days
Barracks Needed to hire Hirelings 0 3 2000 cp 3 days
Chapel Resolve resting bonus 4 0 2000 cp 2 days
West Curtain Wall Protection from West 0 4 2500 cp 4 days
South Curtain Wall Protection from South 0 4 2500 cp 4 days
Brighthollow Restoration Restiing bonus 2 0 500 cp 2 days
Brighthollow Lab Restore Lab 1 0 600 cp 1 day
Bailey Needed to build the Training grounds 2 0 800 cp 2 days
Towers Perception resting bonus 2 1 800 cp 3 days
Library Lore resting bonus 2 0 900 cp 3 days
Western Barbican Bars passage to Isce Ien River 0 2 900 cp 3 days
Additional Storage 3 Chests 0 0 900 cp 1 day


When you acquire the Barracks upgrade, you will be able to recruit Hirelings.

Hirelings are NPCs that will help in protecting your Stronghold and will maintain the upkeep of your Prestige and Security bonuses. This is a great investment if you want to keep your Stronghold as a prospering place.

There is a standard set of Hirelings available, each with their own set of offerings for Prestige and Security. Additionally, there are also guest Hirelings that can be recruited and will produce variety of unique benefits to your Stronghold.

Standard Unlockable Hirelings


  • Ogre 7th Level
  • 50cp/5 Days
  • +12 Security
  • -10 Prestige

Unlocked by traveling to the Ogre cave in Dyrford Crossing. If you speak with the ogre instead of killing him, you can convince him to come work for you at your stronghold for a fee

Crucible Knight

  • Paladin 5th Level
  • 20cp/5 Days
  • +4 Security
  • +8 Prestige

Unlocked by completing Winds of Steel for the crucible knights.

Dozens Mercenary Captain

  • Fighter 5th Level
  • 20cp/5 Days
  • +6 Security
  • +4 Prestige

Unlocked by completing The Bronze Beneath the Lake for The Dozens.

Avenger of Skaen

  • Priest 7th Level
  • 65cp/5 Days
  • +7 Prestige
  • -5 Security

Unlocked by siding with Wymund in the quest Blood Legacy.

Doemenel Thug

  • Rogue 5th Level
  • 20cp/5 Days
  • +8 Security
  • +2 Prestige

Unlocked by completing The Changing of the Guard for House Doemenel.

Brothel Hirelings
These Hirelings can be found in the Salty Mast in Defiance Bay. Only one can be recruited in a given play through of the game. You can only hire them if you make an attribute check of Constitution 19 and Dexterity 19 after sleeping with them.


  • 10cp/5 Days
  • +3 Prestige
  • + 0 Security

Big Durmsey

  • 10cp/5 Days
  • +3 Prestige
  • + 0 Security


  • 10cp/5 Days
  • +3 Prestige
  • + 0 Security


  • 10cp/5 Days
  • +3 Prestige
  • + 0 Security


  • 10cp/5 Days
  • +3 Prestige
  • + 0 Security


  • 10cp/5 Days
  • +3 Prestige
  • + 0 Security

Guest Hirelings
Guest Hirelings are hirelings that will visit the Stronghold from time to time looking to be hired.

Glanfathan Soul Hunter

  • Cipher 6
  • 50 cp/5 Days
  • +3 Security
  • +5 Prestige

Fellow of St. Waidwen

  • Paladin 6
  • 90 cp/5 Days
  • +6 Security
  • +1 Prestige

Aedyran Noblewoman

  • 250 cp/5 Days
  • +0 Security
  • +12 Prestige

Vicious War Criminal

  • Fighter 9
  • 350 cp/5 Days
  • +8 Security
  • -8 Prestige

Brutish Warrior

  • Barbarian 6
  • 50 cp/5 Day
  • +6 Security
  • +2 Prestige

Dunryd Psion

  • Cipher 5
  • 100cp/5 Days
  • +4 Security
  • -2 Prestige

Stronghold Attacks

Your Stronghold isn’t a safe haven unless it’s made so by adding Hirelings and other personnel to boost security. The reason you’re doing this is because the Stronghold will be periodically attacked by monsters and foreigners.

You can negate these attacks if you clear the various floors of the Stronghold as well. Below is the list of the enemies you would encounter for every level you clear:

Level 1
Wood Beetles and Spear Spiders

Level 2
Xaurip and Wurms

Level 3 & 4
Trolls and Oozes

Level 5 & 6

Level 11
Shades and Forest Lurkers

Level 12
Vithrack – Level 12

Level 13
Caen Gwlas and Spectres

Stronghold Adventures

Stronghold is a great place for idle companions that you may have. They will be allowed to take part in Adventures here.

Each adventure has its own specific time duration and unique rewards, and you’ll be informed every time one is available. This is a great way to make use of some of the companions you are not taking along with you.

Adventure Types
There are various types of adventures available. The larger adventures take much longer, but also bring much better rewards.

Minor Adventure

  • 1 Turn
  • +15% XP
  • 150-300 cp
  • Random Item (Minor)
  • Faction Reputation Bonus (Minor)

Average Adventure

  • 2 Turns
  • +15% XP
  • 150-300 cp
  • Random Item (Minor)
  • Faction Reputation Bonus (Minor)*

Major Adventure

  • 3 Turns
  • +25% XP
  • 500-1000 cp
  • Random Item (Average)
  • Faction Reputation Bonus (Average)

Grand Adventure

  • 4 Turns
  • +35% XP
  • 750-2000 cp
  • 2 Random Items (Average)
  • 1 Random Item (Major)
  • Faction Reputation Bonus (Major)

Legendary Adventure

  • 5 Turns
  • +50% XP
  • 1000-3000 cp
  • 3 Random Items (Average)
  • 2 Random Items (Major)
  • 1 Random Item (Grand)
  • Faction Reputation Bonus (Grand)

Stronghold Prisoners

You can take in Prisoners in your Stronghold, which can have a variety of Lore and gameplay benefits for you. Initially, the Caed Nau dungeon contains 9 cells, but by purchasing the relevant upgrade you can take certain NPCs as prisoners after defeating them.

The following are the NPCs you can hold captive in your Stronghold:

Found in a house in Copperlane, north of the Forum.

Found in the southwest corner of the Catacombs in Defiance Bay.

Found after defeating the Leaden Key Agents after the Riots in Defiance Bay.

Gramrfel the Wayfarer
Once you reach Copperlane, return to Magran’s fork to have an encounter with a high level band of bandits. After defeating the group, Gramrfel can be taken as prisoner.

Found in the ‘Supply and Demand’ quest in Defience Bay.

Mercenary Captain Esmer
Found alongside his crew in the Glanfathan lands of Twin Elms. Spare his life to capture him.

At Level 12 of the Stronghold, you will encounter her.

Warden Bounties

Once you acquire the Warden’s Lodge upgrade, you can begin receiving bounties after speaking to the Warden in his lodge.

There are various tiers of bounties available, and you need to complete one tier to unlock the next one.

Tier 1

  • Warchief Iklak
  • Nalrend the Wise
  • Sly Crydel
  • The Dweller

Tier 2

  • Songsmith Roska
  • Daroth Grimault
  • Thorfen
  • Glasdial

Tier 3

  • Devwen
  • Captain Muarumi
  • Foemyna
  • Galen Dalgard

Tier 4

  • Naroc the Prophet
  • Sserkal
  • High Arcanist Ysly

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