The Steel Tide

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The Steel Tide

1325 AE
Personal story
Victory or Death
Pursuit Pass
(Cursed Shore)
Vigil's Plan
Preceded by
Armor Guard
Followed by
Against the Corruption

The Steel Tide is a mission in the personal story for any character, who has decided to go with the Vigil's plan at the end of Further into Orr.


Use the tanks to take control of Orr's Pursuit Pass region.

  • Meet Tactician Beirne at Caer Shadowfain.
  • Prepare for the invasion by the Orrians.
  • Speak with Lightbringer Ives.
  • Defend Caer Shadowfain.
  • Rendezvous with the Geargrind warband.
  • Use the tank to stop the counterattack.
  • Talk to Lightbringer Ives.
  • Proceed through the archway.
  • Find the leader of the Risen forces.
  • Kill Archmage Harshaf.
  • Speak with Crusader Deborah.


Click here to edit the reward data

All professions


Upon arriving in Caer Shadowfain, Tactician Beirne is greeted by Lightbringer Ives and talks to old friends. Some of the outpost's service NPCs are available at this time. Talk to Lightbringer Ives when you are ready to continue.

A cutscene will play, and afterwards Risen will spawn and attack Caer Shadowfain from the front and the back. You can either stay in the middle and try to assist both fronts simultaneously, or pick a side and help them out. There are quite a lot of Risen, so try not to get separated from your allies; many of them will end up getting defeated, too, and it's difficult to revive them mid-combat. Following the death of the Champion Risen Knight which appears five minutes after the risen assault begins, the Gear Warband arrives with the tanks, and you're ready to move out to join them. Follow the tanks and kill Risen along the way. Eventually, a massive wave of Risen will spawn and the tanks will stop. Corporal Beirne recommends that you make use of the center tank. Although you can fight the Risen normally, the tank tends to take out things in a single shot, so it is far more efficient. Just be aware that you can't use your normal skills while manning the tank, and it can't fire at things that get too close.

After slaying enough Risen, two Veteran Risen Giants appear, one to the left and one to the right. They throw rocks at your location, but don't seem to actually hit anything with their attacks. You must kill the Giants to advance the quest; there will be six in total, three on each side. It's much faster to use the tank to kill them. However, this becomes more difficult, because by now you will have lost several NPC allies, and increasing numbers of Risen will get close enough to be unhittable with the tank. Fortunately, there are four mortars set up behind the tanks. You can fire these off immediately (don't turn the mortar or charge the shot) to severely damage all nearby enemies. Alternate between firing the tank and the mortars while keeping yourself alive. After all six Giants are defeated, you are tasked with finding and killing the enemy commander. This last part has to be done on foot; the tanks won't come with you, so it's just you, Beirne, and a few others.

Proceed to the quest marker, where you will find a Champion Risen Wraith. He is not particularly dangerous. About halfway through the battle, a cutscene will play, and Beirne will be out of the fight from then on. Once the Wraith goes down, the mission ends.







Static environmental weapons[edit]


Reaching the outpost:

Lightbringer Ives: Tactician Beirne. I was told you'd be heading up an armored company.
Tactician Beirne: Yes, Lightbringer. They'll be here. I ordered them to get some rest and a warm meal before the next operation. Hope that's all right.
Lightbringer Ives: That was a terrible call! Heh, just joking. You're a good leader, Beirne. I'll brief you on the situation once you're settles in.
Lightbringer Ives: It's an honor to serve with you, Commander.
Tactician Beirne: Hello, Priestess Amelia! Didn't expect to see you out here on the front.
Priestess Amelia: As ever, I carry Dwayna's healing light and go where I'm needed.
Tactician Beirne: It's a pleasure to see you. Between you and Deborah, it's like being home in Divinity's Reach.

Talking with the different NPCs present:

(if human)
Priestess Amelia: It's good to see you again, Hero...I mean, Commander. I imagine fighting centaurs and elementals in Shaemoor was good training for this battlefield.
Talk more option tango.png Glad to see you, too. I know the Pact's wounded are in good hands.
Priestess Amelia: What can I do for you today, Commander?
Talk more option tango.png How are you handling the Pale Reavers' injuries?
Dwayna's Blessings transcend race, but I won't lie. It's been a struggle to figure out how to best treat them. Haven't lost any yet, and I'd like to keep it that way.
Talk back option tango.png I have another question.
Talk end option tango.png Sounds like you're on top of it. Thanks.
Talk more option tango.png How long have you been on the front line?
Not very long, but it feels like a lifetime. This is where I'm needed, however, so this is where I'll stay.
Talk back option tango.png I have another question.
Talk end option tango.png Glad to hear it.
Talk end option tango.png Nothing right now, thank you.
(if human)
Tactician Beirne: I remember the first time I saw you in Shaemoor. You look a lot more confident today.
Talk more option tango.png I've been through a lot since then. We all have.
Tactician Beirne: Was there something you wanted? Something I can help you with?
Talk more option tango.png I love your dog. How long have you had her?
I have her since she was a pup, about eight years now. My family's long gone, friends come and go, and a lot of fellow soldier have fallen, but Allie and I are inseparable.
Talk back option tango.png I have another question.
Talk end option tango.png She's a good dog. You're lucky to have each other.
Talk more option tango.png How did you come to join the Pact?
When I heard about a Pact effort to take down a dragon, I figured they needed me more than Divinity's Reach did. Once the Pact agreed to let me bring Allie, I signed up.
Talk back option tango.png I have another question.
Talk end option tango.png Glad to hear it, and glad you're with us.
Talk end option tango.png Nothing right now, thank you.
Allie: Allie looks up with bright eyes.
Talk more option tango.png Good girl, Allie. Remind me that I owe you a treat.
(if human and choose the Dead Sister storyline)
Crusader Deborah: Hey, <Character name>. Don't worry. I'll call you by rank when the other soldiers around, but right now, I'm still your sister first.
Talk more option tango.png Don't worry about the rank. It's just good to see you again.
Crusader Deborah: Was there something you needed? Something official?
Talk more option tango.png This looks like it'll be a brutal mission. Are you ready?
After being held prisoner by centaurs and almost sold as slave? You bet I am. I'd rather die fighting than waste away in chains.
Talk back option tango.png I have another question.
Talk end option tango.png Be careful. We've taken too many losses, as is.
Talk more option tango.png It seems you know a lot of people here.
It's not surprising. Plenty of folks from Shaemoor Valley signed up to take on the dragons. Tactician Beirne, Priestess Amelia, me...what can I say? Krytans know their duty.
Talk back option tango.png I have another question.
Talk end option tango.png Feel free to shout "For the Queen!" when Zhaitan falls.
Talk end option tango.png Nothing right now, thanks.
Carys: Was there something you needed, Commander?
Talk more option tango.png I wanted to see how you were holding up after Tegwen's death.
Losing her is like losing a part of myself, perhaps the best part. I'm so used to hearing her voice that I can almost still hear it, urging me on.
Talk end option tango.png The voice is right: keep going. If we stop, we're lost.
Crusader Afanen: I'm ready when you are, Commander. It's hard to even consider going into action without Tegwen, but we'll make her proud.
Talk end option tango.png We will. Stand by.
Warden Hywel: The Pale Reavers are still reeling from Tegwen's death, especially Carys. Perhaps this mission is just what we need: it'll distract us from our grief, advance the cause, and give us Risen to punish.
Talk end option tango.png Three worthy goals. Let's get started.

Upon talking to Lightbringer Ives (cinematic):

<Character name>: Everybody, where do we stand? Are we ready to roll on the Risen?
Tactician Beirne: Soon, Commander. We're waiting for Geargrind's warband to get here with the tanks.
Lightbringer Ives: There's a heavily defended Risen post southeast of here. If we take that position, the Pact will control the whole area.
Pact Agent: Lightbringer Ives! Scouts report a wave of Risen heading for Caer Shadowfain.
Lightbringer Ives: From what side, soldier? From the shore or the mountains?
Pact Agent: Both, sir! I think they're trying to take us out before the tanks arrive.
<Character name>: Ives, stay here and coordinate the defense. Beirne, you're with me.

When the assault starts:

Lightbringer Ives: Ready the defenses! Push the undead back!

Talking to Lightbringer Ives:

Lightbringer Ives: Welcome to Caer Shadowfain, Commander. Our job here is to hold this position and fortify until we're ready to push further into Orr.
Talk more option tango.png That's a tough job. How are you holding up?
It's not easy, but the Pact manages to keep a steady supply of rations and reinforcement coming in, and every day we push the Risen a little farther back.
Talk end option tango.png Glad to hear it. We're here to help.
Talk end option tango.png There's a tank column en route that'll do just that.

After defending against the undead attack (cinematic):

Lightbringer Ives: It's going well for now, but the Risen are relentless. I don't know how much longer we can defend the caer.
Tactician Beirne: Keep your spirits up, Ives. Out tanks will make a difference. Listen to me, I'm praising charr ingenuity.
<Character name>: Pact ingenuity, Tactician. Nobody's doing this alone.
<Character name>: We need to roll those tanks toward the Risen line. Once we hold that position, the Pact has a straight route to Arah - and Zhaitan.
Carys: Commander, the Pale Reavers volunteer to scout the route. We're tired, but together with you we started this fight, and together we'd like to see it through.
Tactician Beirne: Charr tanks, human escort, and a sylvari scout team. It doesn't get any better than this. We move on your command.

After reaching Geargrind (cinematic):

Ballista Geargrind: Hoo-ah! Tanks primed and ready to roll out on your order, Commander.
Ballista Geargrind: Commander, the soldiers want you to have the honor of being in the lead tank. They look up to you. It'd do them good to see you in the thick of it.
<Character name>: Thank you, Geargrind. Tactician Beirne, have our soldiers defend the tanks while we deliver firepower right down the Risen's rotten throats.
Tactician Beirne: Will do, Commander.

After the cinematic:

Ballista Geargrind: Here! Keep this area secure.

Talking to the NPCs:

Ballista Geargrind: We're ready to roll, Commander. If you've never seen a Gear warband tank column in an all-out firefight, you're in for a treat.
Talk end option tango.png Looking forward to it.
Mangonel Gearstrip: The Gear warband is ready, Commander! Just point us at the enemy. We'll grind the Risen up into undead sausage meat!
Talk end option tango.png Good to know. And never say "undead sausage meat" again.

During the onslaught of Risen:

Tactician Beirne: Abominations! Look out!
Tactician Beirne: Six Gods preserve us! Giants incoming!

After defeating the Risen (cinematic):

Ballista Geargrind: Our tanks won't make it through that rough terrain. The Risen will get close and tear us apart.
Tactician Beirne: We could send in foot soldiers. What are your orders, Commander?
<Character name>: Geargrind, you and your warband hold this position with the tanks. Carys, Beirne - you're with me.
Ballista Geargrind: Be cautious, Commander. We may have broken their line, but those Risen dogs will come back even stronger if we don't kill their leader.
Tactician Beirne: Hey, watch the dog cracks! [sic]He didn't mean anything by that, Allie-girl, I promise.

While crossing the area before the archway:

Crusader Deborah: This endless wasteland is starting to get to me. Half the time I can't sleep, the other half...I don't want to wake up.
Tactician Beirne: Petra sent a care package. Her tangleberry pie is a little taste of home.
Crusader Deborah: At least we're all together. There's comfort in that.

Upon getting Archmage Harshaf to half health in wraith form (ingame cutscene):

Crusader Deborah: Help! It's too powerful!
Tactician Beirne: Deborah! No! I won't let you have her!
Tactician Beirne: Quickly, Debs! Run! Just get out of here!
Crusader Deborah: Sam! No! Not you, Sam. Not you!

After defeating Archmage Harshaf (cinematic):

Crusader Deborah: Beirne, dead? Oh, poor Sam. I can't believe he's gone. He was so brave!
<Character name>: He deserves a burial befitting a hero. Will you take him home to Divinity's Reach?
Crusader Deborah: I'll do more than that. Sam was like family to me - so I'll take care of his family, too.
Crusader Deborah: C'mon, Allie. You're still a Pact dog for now, but when this is all over, you can run in the fields all day and sleep by my fire at night.

Talking to the NPCs present:

Allie: Allie whines softly. She paws the ground when she's not sniffing the air.
Talk more option tango.png Beirne's gone. I'm sorry, girl.

My story[edit]

Estate of Decay.jpg

I met Tactician Beirne at Caer Shadowfain and defended the site against an[sic] Risen invasion from the sea.

When the tanks arrived, we rolled on the main base of the undead. Although we were victorious, Beirne gave his life to save his friends. We won the day, but this victory has been paid for by the losses of many good people.

My story


  • Tanks don't always work and may kick you off.
  • If Beirne shows up as a revivable corpse, and you revive him, it will prevent the story from progressing and Deborah cannot be spoken to.
  • At the end of this story segment, a Toy Tank is placed in the characters personal story tab of the Hero panel.