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So my decision to pick the side to join will basically be the side with the most perks to offer as a home.

What are the unique perks that each of the homes offer?

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You can purchase Armored Trolls relatively early if you side with the Dawnguard's quest line. Also, you can recruit a new added in dog breed similar to a husky.

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Not sure about Fort Dawnguard, but Volkihar Castle has a forge, workbench, grind stone, tanning rack, alchemy lab, and enchanting table. It can also can be upgraded for quick access to the courtyard which has many alchemy ingredients if alchemy is your thing. Oh yeah, I almost forgot about the vampire cattle if you need a quick way to feed.

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+1 Love the cattle for feeding option. Thanks. – ヴァイシャリ Aug 13 '12 at 16:11

If your character is evil, side with Volkihar. If you're the good hero type, join the Dawnguard. In my opinion, I like much more Volkihar because I'm the bad type, you get a cool mage-ring (really, if you're a mage you must join Volkihar), and a bunch of amulets if you're vampire. If you're a mage type, Volkihar seems better to me, for warrior type I think Dawnguard may do a better job. If you're stealthy, I think it depends only in the lore thing of your character (bad for Volkihar, good for dawnguard) because the crossbows are a LOUDLY version of a semi-automatic bow (really, it break your stealth), and the items from Volkihar are more mage-bassed.

Ah, and by the way, if you side with Volkihar you'll get the whole castle for you to enjoy (or kind of), but with the Dawnguard there will be always that guy Isran above you...

I usually join Volkihar, even if it is more bugged (you cannot get rid of the elder scrolls ever, with the dawnguard you can, and the end of the main quest with Volkihar seems so... unfinished), but I can tell you: The ring you get with Volkihar beats up everything you get with the Dawnguard, specially if you love spellcasting like I do.

If you can't decide, make your choice from your character lore. That'll help.

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Nothing, you get the same stuff for both sides. Castle Volkihar has only one upgrade, which isn't unique. As for Fort Dawnguard it is upgraded as you go along the DLC quest line, but in the end it's all the same thing.

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Can you list what services they do provide? – kotekzot Aug 9 '12 at 1:38

Becoming a Vampire Lord also gives you access to specific quests that will give you artifacts which can boost your Vampiric Skills.


Not related to the Volkihar Castle per se but I thought I would mention it since it can boost your character.

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And of course the Dawnguard side has it's specific quest but I don't know what that gives, playing that now. – Jonas Söderström Nov 12 '12 at 9:54

As of right now I'm running a Vampire Lord character, and more or less castle Colkihar offers: Vampire Cattle, Blood Potions, some sick looking Vampire Armor (one variation you can get in Chasing Echoes or towards the end has a cape), CuSith- one of those death hounds you see everywhere except you can recruit him to aid you in battle- plenty of sleeping space, quests to upgrade your powers, a pretty decent influx of bolts for a crossbow, if you kept yours. Dawnguard will usually attack the Castle, and if you kill them you can get around twenty bolts each time. It's not the same as the upgrades from Dawnguard, but the Crossbow is still a useful tool, especially if you happen to have been an archer anyway.

Also, Vampire Lords can return to human form at will, and can change forms as often as they like. without unequipping eveyrthing every time.

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I say Dawnguard - it has all the stuff like the forge, workbench, grindstone and it has a smelter which Castle Volkihar doesn't. You can get armored trolls and huskies (which look better than death hounds to me) and you can get the enhanced dwarven crossbow and exploding bolts.

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The answer of Searth isn't correct. Castle Volkihar has an enchanting table, alchemy lab and every blacksmith item like grindstones, a workbench, a forge, ect. plus the beautiful sites of the courtyard and every alchemy item at the soul cairn portal. Also, you can feed off the cattle and recruit death hounds and shoot bonehawks out of the sky to make jewellery.

Speaking of jewellery: There's plenty of it at castle Volkihar and there are also 2 Dawnguard soldiers that respawn so you can get 40 crossbow bolts every time they come plus (best part) you can become a vampire lord whenever you want and as many times as you want, and you can upgrade your new vampire perk tree. There is only one downside: Health, Magicka and stamina don't recover in the sunlight, only if you're outside. But to fix that you can wear stuff to make them regenerate faster, so I personally prefer the vampires.

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Honestly, it's hard for me. The Volkihar gets you no followers, but you can turn your spouse into a vampire, and if your spouse is a follower, a vampire follower. You also get some epic Mage perks.

The Dawnguard gets you followers, but you don't get to be the leader. They also give you the option to cure Serana, and have some epic huskies and trolls. But they don't give you much perks besides having vampire resistance if wearing a full set of their armor.

I usually choose the Volkihar to get my follower into a vampire by beating it, but when I choose Dawnguard I never go very far. So honestly, it's mage vs weapons.

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