|Gwent Players in this Area|
|Herbalist - Random Card|
|Madame - Random Card|
Continue south along the road from Elihal’s shop until you reach a crossroads. Ignore the bridge to the south-east, and instead follow the dirt road to the west, eventually passing through the “Gate of the Hierarch” to reach lower Novigrad, where there are plenty of things to see and do.
Note: There are a lot of free-form quests here, some of which may, or may not trigger for you. If something doesn’t occur, you may have to try to come around later on in the game, or during a different time of day. Also, if you accidentally pass by such an event without starting it, you may not be able to find it again later. Fair warning.
From the Bridge of the Hierarch follow the road north-west, then north. Cross a short bridge to the north-east and continue north until you find an alley to the east, blocked by a crude wooden door. Beyond you may encounter some Bandits accosting a Merchant. Interfere and either fight the Bandits (level eight and nine) off or use the Axii sign. You can also just leave well enough alone, but what fun is that?
|For using Axii on the Bandits||40 XP|
Resolve the matter however you wish then leave the alley, backtrack across the bridge and follow the road west until you reach a fork, at which point turn south-west to reach an Eternal Fire shrine. West of this shrine you’ll find a rather non-descript house, inside which dwells the elven Blacksmith Hattori. Don’t talk to him yet, as it advances the quest “Of Swords and Dumplings” which is a bit out of your league right now, but it’s worth noting his location for later, all the same.
If you head south-west from the Hattori’s shop you might encounter a she-elf being harassed by some human racists. If you step in and interfere on the elf’s behalf, the racists will leave peacefully enough, but the elf’s response won’t be quite as thankful as you might expect. If you leave them alone, the men will run the elf off.
From the brazier head north, and when the street turns east, follow it. You should shortly see an Herbalist icon on your minimap in one of the houses to the north. This Halfling plays Gwent and sells a surprising variety of Formulae, so he’s worth visiting. His Gwent deck is nothing to take lightly, however; it’s one of the toughest Scoia’tael decks you’ll have to face, being able to make full use of “Muster” cards. He will also play plenty of “Medic” cards, Hero cards, “Decoy” cards and “Scorch” cards to keep you on your toes.
Leave the Herbalist’s house and make your way onto a road to the south, then follow the paved road west. It’ll shortly turn into mud, but keep heading west until you spot a red brick building with an arched tunnel running through it to the north - ignore the one further west. Go through the tunnel to the north and turn west to find a brothel, which will be the first door to the west, despite its humble appearance. You can spot it out by the lanterns over the door and some flowers on the porch. Head inside and talk to the Madame. Aside from the obvious services such a place offers, you can buy a number of sweets, treats, and booze from the Madame. She also plays Gwent, so be sure to leave her one card poorer before you leave. She’s got a robust Northern Kingdoms deck - expect to see a “Catapult” combo, the odd “Spy” card and maybe a “Commander’s Horn”, but nothing too scary.
Now to turn your attentions to the western part of this district, the crescent moon-shaped docks. Along the north-central part of the crescent you’ll find the “Novigrad Docks” signpost. There’s also plenty of miscellaneous containers you can loot here, and precious few guards to stop you. If you’re diligent, you should be able to stock up on quite a haul of Alcohest, Alchemists’ Powder, and Dwarven Spirit, along with the odd bit of junk or valuable alchemy and crafting components.
A Walk on the Waterfront (Level 12)
East of the Novigrad Docks signpost, along watefront near some warehouses you’ll find some Bandits accosting a well-dressed gentleman named Ginter de Lavirac. Chat with one of the Bandits and pick the option “Leave him alone” to start a fight, which Ginter is more than capable of handling himself. Kill the Bandits (level ten) and talk to Ginter some more, who will, with a bit of innuendo, offer you a job that seems to speficially contravene the two professions Geralt insists he doesn’t practice. Accept his offer to start the quest “A Walk on the Waterfront”.
Ginter will get a life bar and start trotting west - your duty being, obviously, to protect him. Shortly past the Novigrad Docks signpost you’ll encounter four more Bandits (level ten), against whom Ginter is quite capable of killing in a single stroke… but it’s best you occupy some of them so they can’t surround him. Clean up, then continue following Ginter west, then north until you find another batch of Bandits, this time being led by a stronger (level twelve) Bandit with a two-handed weapon, which can do silly amounts of damage to Ginter.
Eradicate this second batch of Bandits and follow Ginter to his destination - a meeting with a bunch of ne’er-do-wells. Let Ginter do the talking, respond with “…” the first time you get a chance to speak, then when prompted by Ginter say “Right”. After that, the two parties will part peacefully, and for your efforts you’ll get a rather insulting reward. Oh well, going on walks isn’t much of a profession, anyways.
|For going on a "walk" with Ginter||50 XP / 10 Crowns|
Warehouse of Woe (Level 13)
Along the south-western end of this district-the crescent moon shaped docks-you’ll find a dwarf arguing with a human while some rather annoyed-sounding guards look on. Talk to the guard and he’ll try to hire you to deal with the monster in the warehouse (how it got there is a matter of some dispute between the dwarf and the human). The guard doesn’t care about the details, he just wants the monster gone, and like a good Witcher, so should Geralt.
Accept to do the job and head inside the warehouse, where you’ll find a lone Nekker (level thirteen). Kill it, then search the northern corner of the warehouse to find a footprint and a cage with your Witcher Senses. Examine them, head head outside and report to the guard. You can lie about what you found (or lie about finding anything at all), or you can tell the truth.
|For dealing with the monster in the warehouse||25 XP / 60 Crowns|
Continue running south-east along the bottom of the crescent to find a man angrily accosting a Strumpet. The threat of “cutting” should get any good Witcher to flock to the damsel in apparent distress, right? If you interrupt the two you’ll be told to mind your own business by the two of them. You can use Axii to get the man to leave, threaten him, ask politely if the lady wants help, or just walk off. In the first three cases you’ll find out that the two were just engaged in a bit of harmless role-play… which you ruined. Good job, mister hero.
|For using Axii on the customer||40 XP|
|For asking the Strumpet if she needs help||10 XP|