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The Lightwardens

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The Lightwardens

The Lightwardens.png
Quest giver
Crystal Exarch
The Ocular (X:6.1, Y:6.0)
Quest line
Shadowbringers Main Scenario Quests
Experience 217,440
Gil 4,663
Previous quest
Main Scenario QuestTears on the Sand
Main Scenario QuestEmergent Splendor
Next quest
Main Scenario QuestWarrior of Darkness

Main Scenario Progress: 563 / 853 (66%)


Shadowbringers Progress: 22 / 157 (14%)


The Crystal Exarch welcomes you back to the Crystarium.

— In-game description





  • The Crystal Exarch welcomes you back to the Crystarium.
  • Having listened intently to your experiences with the Leveilleur twins, the Exarch reveals the existence of powerful beings known as Lightwardens, whose destruction he believes is necessary to save the First and avert the Eighth Umbral Calamity. Soon after, your discussion is interrupted by a breathless Captain Lyna, who reports that a nearby town─Holminster Switch─has come under attack by a swarm of sin eaters. The Exarch quickly issues commands, and requests that you assist in the settlement's defense.
  • After you agree to lend your aid, the Exarch urges you to make swift preparations, and meet him at the crossroads north of the Accensor Gate.
  • You rendezvous with the Exarch outside the Crystarium, and he gives you directions to the Northern Staging Point. Time is of the essence.
  • You arrive at the woods on the outskirts of town, where Captain Lyna briefs you on the situation. Considering the number of sin eaters involved, it seems likely that a Lightwarden leads the attack. Make preparations to enter Holminster Switch and slay the abomination!
    • ※To enlist your companion NPCs for this duty, speak with them near the entrance or access Duty Support via the main menu. Use the Duty Finder if you wish to complete the instance alongside fellow players.
  • You battle your way through the besieged town and put down the Lightwarden raging at its center. At this, the remaining eaters scatter to the winds, leaving you free to withdraw to the Northern Staging Point.
  • The Exarch stands firm as the defeated Warden dissolves into aether, his gaze fixed upon you as you absorb the energy it releases without apparent ill effect. Moments later, the blazing sky dims, night descends, and the Crystarium's exultant steward praises you to the now-starry heavens.
  • Returned to the staging point with the remaining villagers, you have a moment to appreciate the sight of Lakeland beneath a night sky. The Exarch once more exults in your victory, but it seems that you have won only the first battle of many in the war against the sin eaters.


Quest Acceptance

Crystal Exarch: And so you return. Have you gained a better understanding of the crisis now faced by the First?
Alisaie: "Better“ is not the word I would use. Some lands may have been spared the Flood, but the survivors live only to suffer. There seems no end to the horrors inflicted by the sin eaters.
Crystal Exarch: Indeed. Those abominations are a calamity in their own right. And I can well imagine how hopeless the task of eradicating them must seem to you. But after countless battles and untold sacrifice, we have identified a potential weakness. Sin eaters are drawn to serve the strongest of their kind─a class of creature we call “Lightwardens.” And from what we have been able to ascertain, only a handful of these entities exist.  Just as an ant colony will perish in the absence of its queen, we believe that the death of a Lightwarden will cause the lesser creatures within its sphere of influence to disperse.
Alphinaud: I have a feeling Eulmore might have something to say about any concerted action we take against these monsters. Vauthry's command over the sin eaters is integral to Eulmoran society. In seeming to guarantee his people's safety, it guarantees their obedience. He will not take kindly to us depriving him of such useful allies.
Crystal Exarch: Agreed. Thus we will need to occupy or otherwise divert his forces whilst we proceed with the business of eliminating the Wardens. Until we have done so, all other considerations must be set aside if we are to forestall the Eighth Umbral Calamity.
What will you say? Are you sure that eliminating the Wardens will be enough? / I'm not sure I follow... -> I'm not sure I follow...
Crystal Exarch: Your uncertainty is understandable, given the circumstances. Perhaps a more detailed explanation is in order. To begin at the beginning, then... (Exarch hits his staff against the ground, and everything changes it's view)
Crystal Exarch: In the ancient past, a single star was divided into fourteen worlds. This is the Source─your home. These others are the thirteen shards, in whose number we find the First. Though physically separate, they retain a connection to each other, and with the Source especially.  Now, let us assume that a given element in one of the shards attains abnormal ascendancy.
Crystal Exarch: Just as water will flow from the highest point to the lowest, the excess energy will begin trickling into the Source...
Crystal Exarch: And such an influx of aether will of course exert a palpable influence. If the element in question were fire, then drought and wild fires might ensue. If it were ice, one might expect the weather to turn bitterly cold.
Crystal Exarch: As aether continues to pour in, such phenomena will become more and more extreme, until eventually, a single untimely event triggers a disaster which “cracks” the barrier dividing the two worlds. What was once a trickle now becomes a deluge, sweeping the shard along to be rejoined with the Source. At the same time, the element which held sway in the shard is unleashed in full, its energies amplifying the original disaster to truly catastrophic proportions.  An earthquake thus magnified might strike with enough force to shatter continents; a tidal wave might swell to a size capable of drowning entire nations. These devastating events are what we refer to as “Umbral Calamities.” Seven times has a calamity befallen the Source; seven times has a shard been absorbed.
Crystal Exarch: At present, the Light-drowned realm of the First stands perilously close to meeting the conditions for a Rejoining. It is the sin eaters who are to blame for the Light's continued dominance.  In addition to attracting their lesser kin, the Lightwardens I mentioned earlier radiate aether, saturating every corner of their territory with Light. Even here in the Flood-spared region of Norvrandt, their influence is strong enough to banish night from the sky. Thus, if we are to restore balance to the First and head off a potential calamity, it is imperative that we put each and every Lightwarden to the sword.
Alisaie: We've been doing our best to take the fight to the enemy ever since we first heard the Exarch's explanation.
Alphinaud: Though we have yet to claim any meaningful victories, if truth be told. Apart from being confoundingly elusive, the Lightwardens possess a troublesome quality which compelled us to delay our plans until such time as you arrived.
Lyna: Forgive the interruption, my lord, but Holminster Switch is requesting reinforcements! They say the sin eaters are attacking in force, and the village could soon be overrun.
Crystal Exarch: Alert the guard. We should be prepared in case the fighting reaches the Crystarium. You have command of our forces in the field, Captain, but hold off on entering the town until I arrive. That goes for Alphinaud and Alisaie as well.
Lyna: My lord!
Crystal Exarch: Pray, lend us your strength. Such a fight will provide you with far greater insight than any explanation I could offer.

Speak with the Exarch

Crystal Exarch: Holminster Switch is in the north of Lakeland, so we had best make haste with our preparations. In fact, meet me outside the Crystarium at the crossroads northwest of the Accensor Gate, and I shall lead you there myself.

Speak with the Exarch at the crossroads beyond the Accensor Gate

Crystal Exarch: All set? If we follow this road north, we will arrive at the Northern Staging Point. The village itself lies not far beyond. Quickly, now!

Speak with the Exarch at the Northern Staging Point

Crystal Exarch: Holminster Switch is past these gates and through the woods. 'Tis not exactly a near neighbor to the Crystarium, but as we occupy the same region, we have built up something of a cooperative relationship. What can we expect inside, Captain?
Lyna: The town is beset by a swarm unlike any we have seen in recent years. We did our best to evacuate the villagers, but as many as half remain...
Lyna: Judging by the number of eaters present, we have good reason to believe that a Lightwarden leads the attack.

Alisaie: How convenient. It seems we'll have our chance to slay a Warden sooner than we expected.
Lyna: <snort> One does not simply “slay a Warden.” Has no one told you what happens if you defeat one of those fiends? They hold more Light inside them than all of their underlings put together. It can be struck down, aye, but its essence won't dissipate like the weaker kind. Vile aether will billow outwards and envelop the nearest living being─a reckless young swordswoman, perhaps─and turn her into a brand-new Warden.
Crystal Exarch: Ah, well you can leave that particular quandary to us. I must ask that the guard stand down and allow us to engage this leader of eaters alone. Concentrate on the survivors─we must save every life we can.
Lyna: But what if─!? 
Lyna: ...Understood, my lord. As captain of the guard, however, I will not watch you brave such danger without an escort from our ranks. I insist that I go with you.
Crystal Exarch: Very well. Then our Warden-slaying party shall include myself, the Leveilleurs, Captain Lyna, and last but not least...
Crystal Exarch: A formidable group indeed.
Into Holminster we go! Once we reach the Lightwarden, do not hold back─we strike to kill!

Enter Dungeon Holminster Switch


The Lightwarden starts to break up
Lyna: It's releasing its aether. Fall back! We cannot let it touch us. Quickly, my lord, we must withdraw!
Crystal Exarch: That will not be necessary, Captain.
Crystal Exarch: ...Though I appreciate your concern. The eternal Light of these creatures has confounded us for nigh on a hundred years. For each we have put down, another has risen up in its place, born of the selfsame aether relinquished by its predecessor. But now we have a way to contain that corruption.  The blessing of Light! And the hero who wields it now stands before you!
Shards of aether fly into the Warrior of Light
Crystal Exarch: Behold! The monster's power is broken! And the world twisted by its touch returns to its rightful form! (Lyna is agape, the skies begin to be less light-filled)
Everyone at the Crystallarium is walking outside, looking at the sky and witnessing night
Moren: The sunless sea...
Moren: The Warrior of Darkness has come!
Lyna: Is that...what I think it is?
Alphinaud: The night sky, as it should be.
Lyna: Who are you people? You killed a Warden, then bathed in its aether as if it were a spring shower, and now the sky...? The legends are true! My lord...?
The Crystal Exarch is kneeling to the Warrior of Light
Crystal Exarch: How many years have I waited for this moment...
Crystal Exarch: For the one possessed of Her blessing. For you. You have vanquished the Lightwarden of Lakeland, and for the first time in a century darkness has returned to the mantle of night. Without the ever-present Light to sustain them, the sin eaters will have no choice but to retreat.
Crystal Exarch: ...Yet our victory is far from complete. Though darkness has fallen here, the other Wardens yet bask beneath burning skies, feasting upon what little life remains. Crystal Exarch: Even should it cost me all I have, I would see each and every one of them slain, that this world might be spared from oblivion! Not only for the First, but for the Source as well! Save one and we save the other! that as it may...I concede it was wrong of me to summon you to this fight against your will.  I swear on my life, I will one day atone for that deed. But for the present... 
Crystal Exarch: I beg you stay and see this fight to its conclusion. Cast down the Wardens, and restore Darkness to the First!
What will you say? I will become the Warrior you need. / It sounds like a glorious adventure! / It seems I've no choice but to fight. -> It seems I've no choice but to fight. 
Crystal Exarch: On behalf of the First, I offer you my deepest thanks.
Alisaie:;;; I understand there is much at stake here, Exarch, but why do you risk yourself so readily? It must have been a dangerous drain on your aether to summon even one person across the rift.
Crystal Exarch: I do it for my people, of course─to give the Crystarium the tomorrow it deserves.
Alisaie: That is true now, yes─but the city had yet to be built when you first called forth the Crystal Tower. I'm simply curious to know what prompted you to commit yourself so completely to this particular course.
Crystal Exarch: There are...things which we can ill afford to lose. And...I sensed from the first that I had a part to play in preserving them. Forgive me. I fear the events of the day may have taken their toll.  Despite appearances, I am an old man─one burdened with many...difficult memories, some too painful to recall.
Alisaie: Well, then I'm sorry for pressing you. It's a family failing, I'm afraid.
Alphinaud: Hmph. One which has served us well, more often than not. Needless to say, we will continue to fight at your side until the last sin eater is defeated.
Crystal Exarch: Come then, my Warriors of Darkness─let us gather the surviving villagers, and make our way back to the Crystarium.
Alphinaud: Without that constant glare, Lakeland seems an entirely different place...
Alisaie: It's over, yes? I might need a moment...
Lyna: It's as if the sky itself had disappeared into the heavens... If I didn't have wounded to tend to, I'd never stop staring...

Speak with the Exarch

Crystal Exarch: How quickly you have justified my faith in you...
Crystal Exarch: So many lives saved, and the sky itself heralds your success. A single victory in a larger struggle, perhaps, but a momentous one nonetheless!