How to Search the Cellar in Baldur's Gate 3 BG3
Image Source: Larian Studios via Twinfinite

How to Search the Cellar in Baldur’s Gate 3 (BG3)

If you've got a bad feeling, it's because you should.

Baldur’s Gate 3 is filled to the brim with side quests and objectives for you and your party to complete and explore as you go along your journey. If you’re making your way through the Blighted Village, you might come across what appears to be a simple apothecary, but if you search the cellar, you’ll find yourself met with much more than meets the eye. Here’s how to complete the Search the Cellar quest in BG3.

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Starting Search the Cellar Quest in BG3

Baldur's gate 3 dark amethyst search the cellar map location
Image Source: Larian Studios via Twinfinite

The quest can actually be started in a couple of different ways, depending on where you find yourself going first. You can go through the Blacksmith’s Forge using the spiderweb-covered hole on the floor, or the town’s well and make your way through the Whispering Depths, where you’ll find Phase Spiders, Ettercaps and some dead skeletons – one of which will have a journal in their pack. If you read the journal, you’ll begin the quest to either destroy or unlock the Necromancy of Thay.

You can also start the quest by searching through the apothecary, where you’ll find a ledger on the counter that tells the apprentice to keep prying eyes away from the cellar. This piques your party’s interest and begins the questline to search the apothecary’s cellar.

How to Search the Cellar in BG3?

You only need to reach the quest location in the Blighted Village, but you have to read the Apprentice’s Journal in the Whispering Depths to officially start the quest. That journal will also give you the location for the Dark Amethyst which you’ll need at the end of the quest.

To get the Dark Amethyst, you’ve got to make your way into the Whispering Depths, under the Blighted Village. In there, you’ll find a web (no pun intended) of Phase Spiders and their matriarch that you can try to fight or try to slip past to get the Dark Amethyst off the ground. Once you’ve got it, the entrance to the cellar is directly behind the counter of the apothecary on the floor against the wall. If you choose to go through the shop first, you’ll come across the tome at the end before you find the Dark Amethyst you need to open it.

Baldur's gate 3 crates and lever secret door cellar
Image Source: Larian Studios via Twinfinite

Once you’re in the cellar, you can walk around exploring and pilfering plenty of alchemy supplies, but when you’re ready to get on with questing, you’ll find a bookshelf along a wall adjacent to a stack of Wooden Crates. Drag the crates away from the wall to reveal a lever that’ll slide the bookshelf aside when you pull it, revealing a secret passage. Head through the passage and prepare for combat.

The room you enter will have multiple caskets in it. The first one on the right has a Scroll of Summon Quasit, but the rest of them hold Guardians who will all attack once one of the caskets is opened. Attack each one from a distance to only have one Guardian wake at a time, or enjoy a nice combat encounter. Regardless, after you’ve taken out all the guardians you can make your way to the Ornate Mirror at the side of the room.

How to Pass the Ornate Mirror in BG3

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The Ornate Mirror is a fickle obstacle in your way through the apothecary’s secrets, but a bit of cunning can get you right through. The mirror will only let you pass if it believes you’re an ally of its master, Ilyn Toth, so you’ll have to answer a series of questions. Tell it who you are, then when it asks, tell it that you feel as though Szass Tam is a foul, wretched creature. It’s pretty cutthroat, for a piece of decor.

When the mirror asks you what balsam ointment is used for and if you didn’t read the healers log to find out, it’s used for cleaning wounds. Next, tell it that you want to see a way to get the parasite out of your head and you’ll earn the mirror’s respec and be allowed to pass. If it disapproves of any of your choices, you’ll be attacked by an exploding construct which doesn’t discriminate in the slightest, but once that leaves you should be able to give it another go.

Access the Necromancy of Thay

Baldur's gate 3 search the cellar necromancy of thay rusted key
Image Source: Larian Studios via Twinfinite

Passing through the Ornate Mirror grants you and your party access to the secret laboratory, which you can also pilfer for everything it holds. There’ll be a side room on the West side of the lab that contains a rusted key which you can use to unlock the rusted gate on the other side. Be careful when you do so, as there are traps set both in front of and behind the gate that require DC 10 Sleight of Hand checks to disarm.

If the game hasn’t saved in a while, I’d encourage you to do so before you start trying to interact with the book because only one of your party members are going to be able to interact with it during each given playthrough, and if you fail any of your saves, the book stays locked for the rest of your playthrough. You can read the tome yourself or give it to Gale or Astarion, but regardless you’ll have to pass a DC 10 Wisdom Save, followed by a DC 15 and if you choose to try to turn the page for your third choice, you’ll have a DC 20. You only need to pass one of these saves to be permanently blessed(?) with the Necromancy of Thay effect, allowing you to speak with the dead once per Long Rest. Pass all three and you officially Unlock the Tome, but you can also just use Radiant damage to Destroy the Tome instead.

Once you’re done with the tome, you’ve gotten everything you need out of the apothecary’s cellar. It’s a much deeper rabbit hole than it seemed at first glance of the ledger, but it’ll certainly add an interesting dynamic to the rest of your campaign. If you’re looking for more guides for your journey and its various quests, be sure to keep checking back here.


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Nick Rivera
Nick Rivera graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2021 studying Digital Media and started as a Freelance Writer with Twinfinite in early 2023. Nick plays anything from Halo to Stardew Valley to Peggle, but is a sucker for a magnetic story.