One of the greatest pleasures in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is stumbling across a clue that leads you on a grand adventure you never expected to be on. Many of the optional quests in Skyrim can be discovered by talking to NPCs, traveling to out of the way locations, or finding unique items hidden throughout the world. These quests often start with simple tasks or investigations and quickly spiral out into massive subplots that, had you not taken that detour, you may have missed altogether.
These missable side missions are part of the charm of Skyrim and help create unique experiences for players and make the world feel lived in. They typically tell an interesting story about smaller characters, take you to parts previously unknown to brave strong enemies, and reward you with special treasures for your efforts. The best quests in Skyrim offer the player all three of these things.
One such questline in Skyrim is called "Forbidden Legend" and involves an object of great power, a story of men long since passed and completely forgotten, and a gauntlet of puzzles and battles that have left a lasting impression on players for nearly a decade. In this guide, we'll be covering the steps to complete the "Forbidden Legend" questline, the story details of the quest, and the infamously difficult Geirmund's Hall Puzzle.
How Do You Start The Forbidden Legend Quest?
The quest can be discovered in a number of ways. In order to begin "Forbidden Legend", you will need to locate and read the book Lost Legend. There are over 20 places to find or purchase the book throughout the world of Skyrim, and many players will naturally stumble across the book during their play. If you haven't found the book, however, a good place to get one would be at the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary, as you can find a copy on a shelf with candles near where Astrid usually stands.
It's worth noting that finding any of the amulet fragments will also start the quest, but if you wish to follow the quest in the intended and most organic way possible, finding the Lost Legend book is the first step.
The book tells of the Legend of Archmage Gauldur, a wise and powerful wizard who lived during the first era. Gauldur was known to be just and fair and beloved by the people of his time. His three sons resented his power and coveted it, eventually devising a plan to take it from him. Knowing that the source of his power was his magic amulet, the three sons killed Gauldur and divided the amulet into three equal pieces.
They quickly began a violent rampage throughout the country, gaining the attention of King Harald, who sent Lord Geirmund, the king's personal battle mage, and an army of his best men to stop them. One by one, the sons were tracked down, murdered, and buried in tombs spread throughout the world along with each of their amulet fragments. The king ordered that their deaths be kept secret and that record of Gauldur's deeds be erased from history. The amulet pieces are still out there, just waiting for a brave adventurer to reunite them and claim their power for themselves.
How To Complete The Forbidden Legend Quest
In Folgunthur, you will find a journal in a small camp that describes three adventurers who traveled together looking for the fragments. Journey through the tomb, avoiding the traps and slaying the monsters within until you locate the Ivory Dragon Claw and Danys Velen's notes, which will lead you to the three tombs of Gauldur's sons where the amulet fragments are located.
Use the Ivory Dragon Claw to open the gate and cross the bridge deeper into the tomb. You will come across a lever puzzle. If you are looking at the gate, the order you pull the levers in is 4-3-1-2-3. The gate will open and you will descend further into the tomb, investigating the Claw to discover the answer to the next puzzle, Hawk-Whale-Snake. Then you will enter the final chamber to face off against Mikrul Gauldurson, the weakest of the three brothers. Defeat him to collect your first amulet fragment
The next fragment can be found in Saarthal while completing the "Under Saarthal" quest. This quest is obtained by joining the College of Winterhold and completing the short "First Lessons" prerequisite quest. Follow Tolfdir to the excavation site and defeat Jyrik Gauldurson to obtain the second amulet fragment.
There is only one fragment left, and to find it you'll need to go to Geirmund's Hall, a tomb near Ivarstead, where the hero Geirmund gave his life to defeat the evil brothers and protect the world from Gauldur's amulet.
How To Solve Geirmund's Hall Puzzle
Geirmund's Hall is yet another dungeon filled with traps, draugr, and frostbite spiders. Start by dropping into the pit in the ground near the eastern wall. Swim toward the ramp and go through the iron door where you will need to defeat two frostbite spiders. Eventually, you will find a set of steps that lead to a room with another stone tablet puzzle.
Unlike the last puzzle, the engravings on the claw are not the solution. Instead, look back throughout the tomb for images of the animals depicted on each stone. The solution is a mirror image of the order you saw them in earlier. To open the gate simply spin the stones in order until they are showing Hawk-Whale-Snake-Whale, and the door will open.
Fight your way to the end of the tomb and you will take on Sigdis Gauldurson, the most formidable of the three brothers. The trick to defeating him is noticing that Sigdis will have an accurate health bar while the clones will always show full health. This is the best way to tell them apart.
Defeat Sigdis, collect his fragment, and travel to Reachwater Rock to reassemble the amulet. You will need to defeat all three brothers one more time in order to put the amulet back together and claim your prize: The Gauldur Amulet; +30 Health, Majicka, and Stamina.
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