I've met Sinding, a werewolf who the Daedric Lord Hircine has punished by preventing his transformations. He's given me the ring he stole and asked me to entreat Hircine for forgiveness.
While in Falkreath, the Dragonborn may hear rumors of the savage murder of a little girl. No one seems quite sure how someone could commit such a horrible crime, but the culprit is currently locked away in the Falkreath Jail if the Dragonborn wants to find out.
Sinding (found in Falkreath Jail, under the Barracks) will tell the Dragonborn of a rare animal, the White Stag, that needs to be killed to appease Hircine, the Daedric Prince of the Hunt. Sinding gives the Dragonborn the Cursed Ring of Hircine, which auto-equips and can't be removed. While worn, it causes the wearer to transform into a Werewolf at random, even if they don't have Lycanthropy. Note that transforming will remove all equipped items, including the ring, so transforming once will solve the problem of unpredictable transformations.
After that, Sinding escapes. To remove the cursed ring, the Dragonborn must track down the White Stag and slay it. Note that the White Stag regenerates health very quickly, so it may be difficult for low-level players to kill it. It also runs away from the player and followers, just like a regular Elk. Sneak-attacks with bows will be useful here, as well as powerful Destruction spells, such as Incinerate and Icy Spear, especially if dual-cast. After having killed it, the Stag's spirit appears and approaches the Dragonborn, and Hircine will speak through it. He commands the Dragonborn to go to the place where Sinding has fled, and to kill him to gain the Daedric Lord's favor.
Sinding can be found at Bloated Man's Grotto. After arriving, the Dragonborn will meet some hunters, who are outmatched by Sinding. Note that if the player is in werewolf form, talking with the necessary characters is not possible, so wait for it to wear off.
Talking with the dying Khajiit will reveal that Sinding is too strong for the Hunters of Hircine, and he will tell the player to kill Sinding in the name of Hircine before dying. The objective at this point is to wander through the walkways until Sinding is met in a clearing; he will speak to the player from his perch on a rock outcropping. There are two choices at the end of the conversation; one is to tell him that he will be killed for Hircine, the other is to tell Sinding that they will kill the hunters for him.
Picking the dialogue option to kill Sinding will make him accept his fate, though he will flee through the pathways away from the player, killing Hunters as he goes, until he reaches a dead end.
Sinding is a powerful foe, and often uses power attacks. Frost-based attacks can be useful here, as they will drain his Stamina, preventing as many power attacks. Note that he is immune to paralyzing spells and potions. When low of health, he will not yield but rather attempt to flee. This can be used to an advantage to attack him without reprisal. After he is dead, skin him and the aspect of Hircine appears in Sinding's ghostly human form, congratulating them and gives the player the Savior's Hide.
If the dialogue option is selected to spare him, Sinding will be grateful, and he will help the player kill the Hunters, saying "We will hunt together!"
Even if a high level, the Hunters are not very powerful foes; and still wear low-level armor, such as hide, studded, and fur armors. Some Hunters wear only clothing, while one or two wear Steel Armor. Each area along the path to the dead end has two-three Hunters. Having a follower along will help if having trouble, and Sinding can kill the Hunters in two hits.
After the dead end is reached and the Hunters have been killed, speak to Sinding. After the conversation ends, leave him and exit the Grotto to meet Hircine, who will congratulate the player and give them their reward.
The reward received varies depending on the Dragonborn's choices:
If Sinding is killed and his skin taken, Hircine appears and rewards the Dragonborn with the Savior's Hide, a leather-based light armor which gives 15% magic resist and 50% poison resist.
If the Dragonborn spares Sinding and kills the hunters, Hircine will appear upon leaving the grotto and commend the Dragonborn for turning the hunt "inside out," giving his blessing and transforming the ring into Hircine's Ring. This ring gives the Dragonborn unlimited werewolf transformations per day, but only if the user is already a werewolf.
It is also possible to obtain both of these rewards using one of a number of similar exploits:
PC 360 PS3 Kill all the hunters, speak to Sinding, go outside the grotto and claim the Hircine's Ring, then go back in and kill Sinding to get his skin. The spirit will reappear from Sinding's corpse and offer the Savior's Hide.
PC 360 PS3 If the above doesn't work, kill and skin Sinding immediately after killing the hunters and talking to him. As soon as the Hircine spirit appears, back out of the conversation and run out of the grotto where the White Stag spirit will appear and bless the ring to break the curse. Return to the grotto and resume conversation with the Hircine spirit to receive the Savior's Hide.
PC A further way that can work to receive both rewards (if the first method results in not being able to skin Sinding upon return and the second method results in a non-speaking Aspect of Hircine in the grotto upon return) is to kill the hunters, kill Sinding near the exit, complete the conversation quickly to claim the Savior's Hide and then sprint to the exit to claim the Ring outside. It is also possible to achieve this with console commands. If you can't kill Sinding by the entrance, you can simply kill him wherever possible, acquire the Savior's Hide from the Aspect of Hircine, then immediately open the console and enter COW tamriel -10 -10, and you'll be put at the entrance to Bloated Man's Grotto, where Hircine will bless the ring as per usual.
PC 360 PS3 Leave the grotto along with Sinding after killing the hunters. When the Stag spirit appears, back out of the conversation and kill Sinding, then skin him and speak with the spirit emerging from his corpse for the Savior's Hide. Speak to the Stag spirit again for the ring.
PS3 A fourth way to obtain both the ring and the hide, if you originally obtained the ring, is to return to the grotto at any time in the game. Upon entering the main area you will see Sinding in werewolf form. Killing this version of Sinding will only result in obtaining ragged trousers. However, if you follow the trail through the grotto, as you did on the original hunt, you will find yourself on a ledge overlooking the main entrance area with a second version of Sinding--one on the ledge with you, and another below. If you kill the second version of Sinding you will receive the option to skin him, causing the Aspect of Hircine to appear and convert the skin into the Savior's Hide.
PC Another way to getting both rewards is to first kill the hunters with Sinding, then drop the ring, then kill Sinding and skin him for the first reward, pick up the ring and leave the cave. Leaving the cave with the ring will trigger Hircine to come and give you the Ring Of Hircine reward while keeping the Savior's Hide.
There are stories in Falkreath of a strange vagrant who savagely killed a little girl.
Objective: Speak to Sinding
I've met Sinding, a werewolf who the Daedric Lord Hircine has punished by preventing his transformations. He's given me the ring he stole and asked me to entreat Hircine for forgiveness.
Objective: Kill the great beast
I've met Sinding, a werewolf who the Daedric Lord Hircine has punished by preventing his transformations. Hircine has asked me to finish the job and gain his favor by killing Sinding.
Objective: Begin the hunt
Objective: Join the hunt
Objective: Kill Sinding
Objective: Skin Sinding
Objective: Speak with Hircine
I've met Sinding, a werewolf who the Daedric Lord Hircine has punished by preventing his transformations. I'm going to defend him against the hunters that Hircine has sent to end his life.
Objective: Kill the Hunters
Objective: Talk to Sinding
If killed:I met Sinding, a werewolf who the Daedric Lord Hircine had punished by preventing his transformations. I helped kill him as a service to Hircine, and have been rewarded with the Savior's Hide.
If helped:I met Sinding, a werewolf who the Daedric Lord Hircine had punished by preventing his transformations. I defended him against the hunters that Hircine sent to end his life, and earned his friendship.
"Ill met by moonlight, proud Titania," is the Fairy King Oberon's first line in A Midsummer Night's Dream, a comedy play written by William Shakespeare.
There is also a WW2 book with this name, later made in to a film starring Dirk Bogarde.
The White Stag is a reference to King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. In the legend, the Stag has a perennial ability to evade capture, and the pursuit of the animal represents mankind's spiritual quest.
Both quest rewards count toward the Oblivion Walker achievement. Obtaining both makes the achievement obtainable even if another Daedric quest is failed.
If Sinding is killed either before or after helping him kill the hunters, he cannot be resurrected via console after he has been skinned. This is because at that point he has been scripted to die.
If the Dragonborn is a vampire, they will not be able to transform into a Werewolf because lycanthropy and vampirism are not compatible.
If the Dragonborn is a vampire during this quest and chooses to kill Sinding for the Savior's Hide, the hunters fighting him may order "Kill the vampire!" even though the Dragonborn is not the target.
If Sinding is spared, he may appear in a random encounter later on. He will be in werewolf form and hostile, fighting a Hold Guard.
If Sinding is spared, you can go back much later on and may still be at the Grotto and thus able to be killed and skinned (tested on a PS3, +10 levels after Ring was obtained)
This section contains bugs related to Ill Met by Moonlight. Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:
Please reload an old save to confirm if the bug is still happening.
If the bug is still occurring, please post the bug report with the appropriate system template 360 / XB1 , PS3 / PS4 , PC / MAC , depending on which platform(s) the bug has been encountered on.
Be descriptive when listing the bug and fixes, but avoid having conversations in the description and/or using first-person-anecdotes: such discussions belong on the appropriate forum board.
Click to show
360 After using an exploit to obtain both rewards, the White Stag and the Aspect of Hircine can still be found in the location where it would normally be slain. After killing it, approaching the Aspect of Hircine will offer the prompt to speak to him, but no dialogue box will appear on-screen. This doesn't seem to hinder anything during gameplay.
It is possible that one may have to wait for an in-game month to pass before it is possible to re-enter the cave.
Sometimes the ring never works. If this happens it will not be counted to the trophy or the achievement.
PC Sometimes going directly to the jail in trying to start the quest by talking to Sinding, may result in finding him in werewolf form and unable to talk leaving the quest unstartable and uncompletable.
Near the end of the grotto when siding with Sinding, all the NPCs in the area may become permanently invisible or take flight.
It is possible for the White Stag to relocate to a position on the map beyond the world limits, making it impossible to finish this quest.
PC(Fix) Use the console command to move the White Stag to the player: Select it with prid 00090CE1, than move it with moveto player.
After wearing the Cursed ring, and turning into a werewolf manually, it may be impossible to return to normal self.
PC Sinding is unable to be spoken with in the jail because he is stuck or simply won't move from the back wall. Fixes:
Attack Sinding with spells or ranged weaponry and yield.
PC(Fix) It is possible to use the player.moveto console command to simply jump into the cell with Sinding(Ref ID 000EF441 or 00090CE1). The only way to leave the cell is again using the command to move the Dragonborn to a follower (if they have one) or any NPC other than Sinding.
PC It is possible to continue the quest without killing the White Stag by typing setstage DA05 50 in the command prompt. After using the command, the quest marker may not point correctly, but traveling to Bloated Man's Grotto and continuing the quest will fix this.
Sinding will turn hostile if spells, even non-hostile ones such as healing spells, are cast at him. After three "attacks" from the player he will respond in kind.
PC If you're having trouble killing all the hunters without angering Sinding, this is a list of all the hunters and prids so that you can use the console to kill them if necessary:
If the character tells Sinding that the intent is to kill him, and ends up killing (accidentally or purposely) the hunters, the quest may glitch and Sinding will follow the Dragonborn as if he was hunting the hunters. The quest will not progress and Sinding will be invulnerable to damage. The only way to fix this is to reload a previous save.
It is possible, that after killing the White Stag, Sinding will remain in the cell, even though everyone says that he escaped.
PC After entering Bloated Man's Grotto and joining the hunt, Sinding might not appear. The quest stage "Kill Sinding" can not be completed.
PC(Fix) This can be solved in the command prompt by typing prid 0002ABBD to select Sinding in wolf form and then moveto player to bring him to you.
Sometimes the ring will not take effect after Hircine removes the curse. Reloading a previous save and getting the ring again fixes this.
It is possible to keep the Cursed Ring of Hircine while still getting one or both of the final quest rewards. After defeating the hunters and talking to Sinding, the quest will be considered complete, and the Cursed Ring of Hircine may then be dropped or stored, as it is no longer considered a quest item. If the player stores the ring in one of the chests inside or on a follower, Hircine will still give the uncursed ring (Ring of Hircine) even though it isn't in the player's inventory. The cursed ring can then be retrieved after completing the quest. The Cursed Ring will still work as it does during the quest, but will not count towards the Oblivion Walker Achievement/Trophy.
Note: Storing the Cursed Ring on a dead body will make it disappear, as the bodies disappear after speaking with Hircine.
When using fast travel, there can be a transformation from which the player can not recover. To avoid this, travel to the grotto manually.
PS3 360 If riding on a horse when a transformation occurs, the camera will remain focused on the horse and will no longer follow the Dragonborn. This is a bit awkward when the player attempts to move away from the horse and can no longer see themselves or the terrain around them. This camera focus on the horse remains even after returning to normal form. It is recommended to not ride a horse while holding the ring or reload an earlier save.
PS3 When you decide to spare Sinding's life, he will start to follow you to kill the other hunters. Instead of going onward, if you decide to go backwards and leave the cave, Sinding may stop to follow you and wander up on the road. If you follow him on the road, Sinding may still fight by your side on any random encounter, but will attack you if the player attempts to attack or to heal him. This may change the quest objective to Kill Sinding. His destination is Falkreath Jail.
360 Getting both items for this quest(Savior's Hide/Ring of Hircine) does not always count as 2 for the Oblivion Walker Achievement, it may only count as 1. Patch 3 may have fixed an issue with both only counting as 1.
Potential Explanation: This may be due to the achievement being linked to the completion of a Daedric artifact quest and not for receiving the artifact itself. The fact that using one of the exploits to obtain both items still only completes the quest once backs up this hypothesis.
If the Dragonborn travels to Bloated Man's Grotto to kill or aid Sinding, but leaves before killing him or the hunters, he may appear back in his Falkreath Jail cell in his Werewolf form. While he can be killed through the bars (with assistance from the jail guard), he can't be skinned to complete the quest as the cell cannot be opened).
If the Dragonborn is in his Werewolf form, he is still able to talk to Sinding telling him he was sent to kill him. Alternatively, if the hunters are killed, Sinding will still be in his cell. It is possible to return to Bloated Man's Grotto with a follower and use the console command moveto to jump to his cell and either speak to Sinding or kill and skin him, then use moveto to jump back to the follower in the grotto. This will allow the quest to be finished normally.
It is possible to obtain the Savior's Hide from the very beginning of the quest and thus bypass large portions of the quest including hunting the white stag and the activities in Bloated Man's Grotto. After speaking with Sinding and agreeing to help him the player can attack him in his jail cell using arrows or spells and kill him. Although this may take several tries his body will sometimes fall right next to the bars which will allow the player to skin him and, make the Aspect of Hircine appear and gift the Savior's Hide to the player right there in Falkreath Jail.
360 The armor received after killing Sinding may not show in inventory, and the game may freeze.
After killing the Hunters and receiving the Ring of Hircine, then killing and skinning Siding to obtain the Saviour's Hide. Siding may appear in the waterfall area of the grotto alive and well, despite the fact the Dragonborn had just killed him. This happens when the Dragonborn took a nap on the bedroll located in the grotto cave.
On occasion, Sinding may remain in his cell rather than escape, or even escape then return to the cell somehow. This renders the quest uncontinuable, and cannot be fixed.
360 If going back into the cave to kill Sinding after obtaining the Ring of Hircine, do not use werewolf form to do so. This may cause a glitch that prevents skinning Sinding to get the Savior's Hide. This can be fixed by re-entering Bloated Man's Grotto.
If the Dragonborn has cured themself of Lycanthropy before starting this quest, they may be marked as a werewolf, but without the ability to turn into one, and with no way of curing it again.
Sometimes after killing Sinding and the quest is completed, Sinding is seen wandering up the road in werewolf form. Reloading the save will fix this.
Upon entering the cave in werewolf form, the Dragonborn may revert to normal, regardless of time remaining for the transformation.
Using the Storm Call shout while killing the hunters will also kill Sinding.
PS3 Dead Thralls seem to disappear at a 50% probability when the player enters the Falkreath Barracks to speak to Sinding. Deactivate the Thralls by using a Destruction cloak spell or become a werewolf.
If you try to get both artifacts, but the Skinning command does not appear after killing Sinding, only Looting command, you can try to resurrect him via console, then kill him again. After the second killing, the Skinning command still not appear, but it will activate when you try to loot him.
PS3 If you chose to betray Sinding, and kill him before all the hunters are killed, your quest may not progress and your quest status will be stuck at "Kill Sinding". This can be fixed by loading a previous save, and letting Sinding kill the hunters before you slay him.
360 There is a chance that Sinding will not help the player kill the Hunters if that option is chosen. He will just run up to the Hunters and stand there while being attacked.