This quest can be obtained shortly after entering the city of Markarth. Tyranus, a Vigilant of Stendarr, will ask the Dragonborn to help him search an abandoned house for evidence of daedric activity. Upon entering the basement, Tyranus will proclaim that "This is no ordinary Daedra!" and run for the door, only to find it locked. Molag Bal will speak and command the Dragonborn to kill Tyranus. After he gives the command to kill Tyranus, the room starts to shake, the lights become dim, and objects move as if by themselves. If the Dragonborn attempts to leave the house (i.e. select the exit door) before killing Tyranus, then Molag Bal will convince Tyranus to attack the Dragonborn. A Scroll of Calm will not prevent Tyranus from attacking, but casting Harmony will temporarily cease his attacks until it runs out, at which point he will resume his attack. Voice of the Emperor used by Imperials will calm Tyranus. Either way, Tyranus must be killed in order to progress any further. Afterward, journey down to the altar of Molag Bal in the basement.
Molag Bal entraps the Dragonborn in a spiked cage while activating the mace and says that he wants revenge on his rival, Boethiah, and her followers. He wants Logrolf the Willful, a priest of Boethiah who has been desecrating Molag Bal's altar in Boethiah's name, lured to him so he may break his spirit.
The location of Logrolf the Willful is randomized; any Forsworn camp may host him. Travel to his marked location and free him. If the quest "No One Escapes Cidhna Mine" has been completed, then the Forsworn holding him may not be hostile. If all enemies at his location are dealt with prior to releasing him, he will immediately return to the abandoned house in Markarth.
Once back inside the abandoned house, follow Logrolf back to the altar. He will become trapped in the same cage that the Dragonborn stumbled upon earlier. Molag Bal will then grant the Dragonborn his Rusted Mace and instruct them to break Logrolf's will. Attack Logrolf (any means of attacking can be used; the Mace does not have to be used) until he submits to Molag Bal. He will be killed during the first time beating him, but Molag Bal will give the Dragonborn a second chance. Once he submits, the Dragonborn is instructed to kill him. Do so to receive the Mace of Molag Bal and finish the quest.
This is a good opportunity to level up Restoration and attack skill(s) without fear of reprisal. Alternate between hitting Logrolf until his health is close to zero, and healing him back to full health. Keep doing this for as long as desired, but be sure not to kill him and that he does not submit too soon.
One can also level up the Sneak skill by sneaking at the same time.
The whole intro, with Molag Bal speaking, can be skipped if the Vigilant is killed immediately upon entering the house.
When Tyranus decides to flee the house and get help, the table near the exit of the house has chairs stacked on it similar to a scene in the horror movie Poltergeist.
It is possible to obtain multiple Hooded Black Mage Robes from Logrolf during this quest by quickly searching him after he is killed. When he is revived by Molag Bal, he will respawn wearing a new set of robes.
To fail this quest, refuse Molag Bal and kill Logrolf in the pen.
One of the possible locations that Logrolf may be held captive is Druadach Redoubt, which is where Madanach and his companions set up their base of operations if the Dragonborn chose to aid Madanach during the quest "No One Escapes Cidhna Mine." In this situation, the Forsworn are non-hostile to the Dragonborn. It is possible to simply walk up to Logrolf and untie him without being attacked.
In the PC version of the game, when Molag Bal demands the Dragonborn kill Tyranus and the house begins to shake, one can open the front door using console commands. Once outside, the shaking and sound effects will continue to happen regardless.
Items inside three chests in the house are leveled, meaning that the Dragonborn can obtain better items inside if the house is entered at high levels. Possible items include Daedric or Dragonbone equipment, powerful potions, or Black Soul Gems.
At the end of the quest, Molag makes a joke concerning the house: "Keep the house for me while I'm gone."
This section contains bugs related to The House of Horrors. 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 see the list of bugs encountered
If Tyranus cannot be found, he is known to spawn near the stables outside the city of Markarth. To fix this, ask an innkeeper about rumors; this will automatically give the location of Tyranus when the rumor of the abandoned house is mentioned.
If the shrine holding the Mace is activated from the side or from behind, one will still be able to move around the room when talking to Molag Bal.
Activating the shrine from the side can sometimes get the Dragonborn stuck and clip into the spikes. This can cause some problems with the dialogue, as Molag Bal sometimes will not enter into direct conversation, but simply start talking instead, causing him to continuously repeat the conversation. This can be fixed by waiting or loading an auto-save.
Not responding to the priest outside of the house the first time he is seen may make the quest unable to be started.
To fix this, leave Markarth and talk to Banning about buying a dog for 500 . Once purchased, the priest will be prompted outside of the house interrogating a local as he should.
PS3 Tyranus may not appear if the Civil War questline is completed when siding with the Stormcloaks.
The door of house does not lock automatically, and may lock after talking to Molag Bal. This traps the Dragonborn inside of the house. There is no known fix, except to revert to an earlier save.
Upon striking Logrolf with the Mace, he may glitch out of the cage Molag Bal has erected for him. If this happens, it may become difficult to damage him enough to progress.
At random times, Tyranus will leave the house and then enter again. He will continue to stand in the center of the first room instead of going deeper into the house. This will make the quest impossible to complete, due to the basement needing a key to open. This effect can only removed by Molag Bal ordering Tyranus to be killed. To fix this, hit Tyranus and go to the basement; this will cause him to become hostile and follow the Dragonborn. Once there, he can be killed and the quest will progress.
One method of fixing is to reload the auto save. Then, while Tyranus is going through his two lines of dialogue, wait for an hour, then walk around the left side of him and until he finishes talking. Then, he should then continue the quest with his "Wait, I heard something." line.
An extension of the above bug, if Tyranus is killed while he stands in the center, and the Dragonborn leaves before going to the shrine in the basement, their vision may be permanently red and hard to see with. This can be fixed by going to Shearpoint after completing "Dragon Rising" and killing the dragon located there.
Also, if one goes to the basement without killing or hitting Tyranus, and waits for the shaking and discoloration to start, then leaves, neither will go away.
The above glitch may be fixed by loading the auto-save. However, this may not work.
Another way to fix this is to drink Sleeping Tree Sap. When the sap wears off, one's vision should return to normal.
Molag Bal's narration may not go away. It might get stuck on the screen and pretend to continue talking if one draws a weapon as he starts to say it. This can be fixed by killing Tyranus.
If Tyranus is pickpocketed and everything he has is taken, he will not move deeper into the house. If the Dragonborn goes into the basement and triggers the shaking of the house, then goes outside, the shaking will continue, Upon returning to the house one can kill him and speak to Molag Bal, but the front door will now require a key, resulting in the Dragonborn being locked inside.
After speaking to Molag Bal, one may be unable to leave the house, due to the front door needing a key to be unlocked. To fix this, load a saved game from before speaking to Molag Bal, then kill Tyranus and exit the house.
If the Dragonborn is trapped in the house due to one of the various bugs, but has also killed Grelod the Kind for the quest "Innocence Lost" and has not slept yet, sleep in one of the beds. The Dragonborn will be kidnapped by Astrid to the Abandoned Shack and will no longer trapped in the house.
If one arrives in Markarth via the drinking contest from "A Night to Remember", the innkeeper at Silver Blood Inn might not have the appropriate rumor, and will never have the appropriate rumor to start this quest. As a result, Tyranus will never be outside the house or outside the city. Using console commands to force start the quest or spawn a Tyranus does not work. The cause of this bug is that the Forsworn conspiracy quest does not start properly, as it is supposed to start with a murder in the market as one enters the town for the first time through the main gate
Going to the market and killing Weylin while sneaking may fix this bug. If done correctly, the Dragonborn will not get a bounty or be attacked. Other people will start yelling about the Forsworn attack, thus triggering the quest to proceed correctly. Afterwards, "The House of Horrors" should start correctly as well.
Molag Bal may not speak at all and will give no instructions to further the quest. To fix this, kill Vigilant Tyranus as if Molag Bal had spoken.
While beating Logrolf into submission, he may pop out of the trap and stand outside of it. He is still unable to move, and the quest can still be completed.
While going back in the house it will say key required no fix known yet.
In some cases, when one enters Markarth, Tyranus will be hostile and the quest "The House of Horrors" cannot be started. To fix this, lead Tyranus out of Markarth and away from the city gate. Next, attack him until he gets down on one knee; at this point, he cannot be killed. While he is on one knee, quickly run back into Markarth (the Whirlwind Sprint shout could be helpful). Then, when the Dragonborn comes back out of Markarth, Tyranus should be where he was left and no longer be hostile. Speak to him and begin "The House of Horrors" as one normally would. Another way to fix this is to use a spell of Calm (or, if the Dragonborn is an Imperial, the Voice of the Emperor), after which Tyranus should be non-hostile and the quest will begin.
360 PS3 Sometimes, the trap is not triggered when the mace is first taken, and the quest will not continue as a result. This is solved by using Telekinesis on the mace.
This can also be solved by using the Disarm shout on the mace and then grabbing it.
It is possible to get stuck at the beginning of the quest. When Tyranus enters the house, if a guard sends the Dragonborn to jail, the door will be locked again when they come back.
If the quest marker to "Find the priest of Boethiah" appears west of Sundered Towers, then the quest marker may not show up on the compass and he will not be there. If this happens, wait util the next day after killing all of the Forsworn; he should appear in a tent near the anvil.
The location is actually part of Red Eagle Redoubt. The marker should point to a small cave called Red Eagle's Ascent. One will need to go through it for him to spawn properly.
360 If the Dragonborn leaves the house in the middle of torturing Logrolf (after killing him once), then returns, Logrolf may no longer be trapped. Instead, he may seem to be bowing at the altar of his own free will. This does not affect gameplay, as he still acts trapped and returns to the middle of the altar if he staggers out of it after being hit.