Beware that once the party has descended the staircase and entered The Tainted Mountain, it will no longer be possible to visit The Dragonforged at Hillfigure Knoll to collect his gifts for the Final Battle. The party will otherwise be free to exit and re-enter the Tainted Mountain at will, at least until The Dragon is confronted.
Before returning to the Greatwall Encampment, prepare the party for this epic battle. Bring health and stamina curatives. The support enemies ahead will be weak to Holy and Ice. The Dragon will be vulnerable to Dark and physical attacks. Climbing augments for the Arisen will be useful (specifically Adhesion and Arm-Strength). Wear Gloves of Might if possible to improve the Arisen's grip and climbing speed. There will be a lot of running ahead, so consider equipping the Athleticism augment to conserve stamina usage in the large arena.
Since EVERYTHING the Arisen is wearing/wielding will be Dragonforged after this battle (regardless of its enhancement level), consider bringing along 2 different sets of equipment : The best equipment the Arisen needs to kill the Dragon and possibly a second set of equipment that the Arisen needs Dragonforged. As long as the Arisen changes their equipment before they land the final killing blow to the Dragon's heart, whatever the Arisen is wearing at the moment of the kill will be Dragonforged. Also be aware that the Arisen's equipped weapon(s) at the moment of the kill will determine the reward weapons at the end of this quest.
To get to the Dragon, enter the castle and go straight ahead to the cell door leading downstairs to the Tainted Mountain. The staircase leading to the roof is no longer accessible.
Upon entering The Tainted Mountain, it may seem familiar. This is the same area the previous Arisen, Savan, fought the Dragon at the very beginning of the game prior to the character customization menu.
At the bottom of the staircase will be three Geo Saurians, who are far more resilient than regular Saurians.
Further into the cave will be six more Geo Saurians, three of which are camouflaged on the pillars above. The other three are sleeping on the balcony atop the staircase; one is perched on a pillar near top of the staircase. This room also contains four chests (containing a Lancer's Sword, Black Leather Gloves, a Golden Belt), and two large Gold bags worth 10,000 each atop the pillars.
Down the hallway is a short staircase leading to a large two-story room containing three Hellhounds and three more Succubi. Hellhounds are surprisingly strong, able to unleash fireballs from their mouths with a very high knockdown ability. They can climb up to the second floor with ease and have the ability to drag and maul their prey. Ice and Holy are effective against them.
Next is a corridor containing eight relatively harmless Spiders, leading to a Grand Hall with a Gorechimera (a more powerful version of a regular Chimera). It can inflict debilitations and is weak against Ice (150% damage taken) and Holy (120% damage taken).
After defeating the Gorechimera, stand on each of the four pressure plates around the room to open the next door. Once all four pressure plates have been activated, the large door will open leading to The Dragon, Grigori.
After entering the Dragon's Lair, there will be a monologue where the Dragon will give the Arisen an offer: Face him in battle or sacrifice the Arisen's Beloved.
Content Contains Spoilers! Highlight the box below to read.
If you chose to sacrifice your true love, there will be a cutscene where you sit on the throne as Duke, all alone. You can Retry afterwards and proceed with fighting the Dragon. This specific cutscene awards the Solitude Achievement/Trophy.
The first part of the final battle with the Dragon involves escaping the temple. He will first try to collapse the temple on top of the Arisen and will give chase into the next room. If The Dragon is killed with a Maker's Finger in the temple, all cutscenes will be skipped and pawns will not learn bestiary knowledge of The Dragon nor quest knowledge of The Final Battle.
After entering the next room unharmed, inflict damage by striking his heart- which will expose it. The Dragon will then fly off, and the Arisen must now pursue him.
The Dragon will try to collapse the bridge the Arisen is standing on. Avoid the Dragon's fire breath by running as quickly as possible. Pawns will run ahead, and they may possibly die during the pursuit. Aid pawns as soon as possible, as there is no Rift Stone to recover them during this long fight.
There is a moment of respite inside the first connecting guard tower. Take a moment to recover stamina and open the treasure chests containing a Flame Skirt and Dragon Hide Bracers.
While ascending the stairs of the second tower, there is an easy to miss chest on the left containing a Stalwart Earring (before reaching the rooftop with the ballistae).
On top of the second tower will be three ballistae and two treasure chests. Quickly open the chests on the right to collect the Dragon Band and Champion's Bangles. Pawns can fire the ballistae and hit the Dragon's heart, so get to the chests as soon as possible. If the pawns do not make the shot, mount a ballistae and fire a bolt at the Dragon's heart. A cutscene will play where the Dragon strafes the second tower and destroys it.
Now the Arisen has miraculously grabbed onto the Dragon's tail. Climb forward, toward the glowing "heart" on its back. Do not strike until the Arisen is positioned slightly forward of the "heart". A missed strike will push the Arisen slightly aft of the "heart" and the Arisen will need to climb forward again. Occasionally the Arisen will have to jiggle the L-stick to stay on Grigori's back.
After striking the "heart", the final showdown will commence on a wide open battlefield. Walk forward and gather the Noble Earring on the ground. At other gather spots throughout the arena will be a Harmonious Earring (at a gathering spot to the north), a Golden Belt (at a gathering spot to the east) and an Exuberant Earring.
The Dragon's heart is his primary weakness. The organ must be exposed and attacked to inflict significant damage. Pawns may reduce the Dragon's heart to 1 HP, but only the Arisen can strike the final blow.
If The Dragon decides to fly away and attack from out of range, ballistae located around the rim of the battlefield can be used to ground it once more. Always aim for the heart.
Melee Vocations can climb the Dragon and attack the heart, using Conqueror's Periapts and similar items to boost their strength. If climbing the Dragon, be sure to keep a reserve of Stamina restoring curatives (such as Large Mushrooms, Staminal Drench, Liquid Vim, Kept Giant Rank Fish and Kept Sour Ambrosial Meat). It's easiest to climb up from the Dragon's two rear legs, as he does not attack with them. Be careful when climbing his heart, because he can grab anyone on his chest and slam them into the ground. It is also possible to be inside the chest cavity while attacking the heart due to camera issues, which will inflict Fire damage on the Arisen.
The Maker's Finger arrow will kill The Dragon with a single shot to the heart. At this point, the player will be able to see all the cutscenes as well as the credits.
Refer to The Dragon page for more specific tactical information.
Weapon rewards are based on the weapons the Arisen has equipped at the moment the killing blow is landed (For example, if the Arisen uses a longsword to land the final blow, the Arisen will be awarded with a Dragon's Bite longsword after the battle) :
Every piece of equipment (excluding rings/earrings) the Arisen is wearing at the moment The Dragon is slain becomes Dragonforged regardless of its current enhancement level (stars), so prepare wisely. Does not apply to main pawn.
The Arisen's Heart (only a story item, has no effect on gameplay)
If the quest An Innocent Man has not yet been completed, be sure to first visit Cassardis and find Tomlin near the inn to help rescue his father before facing The Dragon.
The SolitudeAchievement/Trophy can be earned by sacrificing the Beloved. However, this is not the "proper" canonical ending, and the game forces the player to retry once the achievement is unlocked. In other words, the player can unlock the achievement and then the game automatically will reload in order for the player to fight The Dragon. The playermust fight and defeat the Dragon in order to participate in post-game content.
It is possible to defeat the Dragon early in the first room. If this is accomplished, the Arisen will not have to run across the bridge, climb his back as he flies, or fight in the final arena. However, this will forgo access to the chests containing a Dragon Band, Flame Skirt, Dragon Hide Bracers, and Champion's Bangles in the area leading to the final arena. If the Arisen kills Grigori before reaching the final arena, the game goes straight to the cutscene reuniting the Arisen & Beloved. All of the Arisen's equipped items will be Dragonforged, the Gold and Experience Points will be awarded, but the Arisen will be unable to pick up any of the aforementioned loot (though they may be acquired later by other means).
ps3xbox360With the introduction of Dark Arisen, it seems if the player leaves The Tainted Mountain and quits the game after having activated at least one pressure plate but has not opened the door, it will become impossible to subsequently open the door and continue the game. [Needs confirmation.]