This is a major milestone. Be ready.
The Witcher 3: Blood and Wine - Capture the Castle
Important: before you start this quest, consider taking a side quest break. Once you commit to the operation you pass a point of no return and some side quests close forever. There’s also a major branching point ahead, so if you want to see multiple endings with everything complete you should do all the optional stuff now.
There's a long, tough, multi-mission slog ahead. By this stage you’ll definitely want to be approaching at least the mid 40’s, level-wise; things get very hairy beyond this point, and there’s no opportunity to wander off for quite some time. You will not have any opportunities to shop, either, so make sure you have plenty of health and repair consumables as well as potions, bombs and alchemy ingredients.
When you’re good to go, head to the meeting point – the closest signpost you’ll likely have unlocked is your own vineyard – and meditate inside until midnight. Cutscenes start immediately, but you have one opportunity via a conversational option to back out if you’re not ready. Damien and Geralt then hash out a very tactical plan (cough).
When you have control again you’ll face a pack of guards. The first thing you should do is murder the shithead archer off to one side. The others aren’t so tough, although both this initial group and the small wave of reinforcements include one baddie with a two-handed weapon; don’t forget to roll or dodge their attacks, as they can’t be blocked, and use your favourite sign to stagger them if necessary.
Head to the next waypoint and you’ll face another group of guards as well as Roderick, the castle owner. He’s level 47, but if you get him alone and duel carefully it’s no trouble; he hasn’t got any fancy tricks. After the battle and interrogation, you can opt to quickly help him or leave him to suffer.
As you move towards the next objective, don’t be tempted to run past the baddies on your left; they will aggro, and there are two archers there. Dogs and other guards join the fight too, and it soon gets messy – you want to take down the first set you meet as quickly as you can, before you’re totally swarmed.
Make it to the search zone and the cavalry arrives. Your help is not much required in the ensuing skirmish. Enjoy the revelations in the cutscenes ahead. I love how this expansion establishes that vampires have more feelings than anyone else, don’t you?
Anyway, a few more chatting scenes and the quest ends. The conversation is very prickly here so you may want to be thoughtful about your choices. You'll automatically move on to The Night of Long Fangs.