Villain is a Tag in Divinity: Original Sin 2 that allows the player to have certain dialogue with NPCs and certain options during Quests. Please see below for a list.

Villain Tag Mechanics

To get the villain tag, you must do three actions that qualify for the villain tag. These actions are very specific, and few options qualify. While the game offers a lot of evil dialogue options, only a select few qualify for the tag.
(From a coding perspective, the game checks the number of times the player has received the "GLO_SetTag_Villain" flag)

  • Commit three murders (only counts once. Animals don't count. Larian's code comments say "yes, we're cruel like that")
    • Note that they must be kills that are considered murders by the game's crime system. The crime system is pretty complicated and has a ton of rules for when it does or does not consider something a murder. Often killing the same NPC on different playthroughs will count as a murder on one, but not on another due to different circumstances.
  • Absorb spirits with Source Vampirism three times (target must be tagged as a ghost, and not tagged as a construct)
    • This is far less picky than the murder condition. There are incredibly few exceptions. Both in and out of dialogue uses are counted.
    • The tagging conditions mean that Shriekers do not count
  • Convince Unnis to give you all of her gold by lying to her
  • Side with the brutes in the shakedown against Elodi
  • Rat out stingtail to Griff
  • Enslave the Lady Vengeance
  • Set off the Doomsday Device in Arx

The following actions have been confirmed to not grant credit towards the villain tag through investigation of the game's scripting code.

  • Leaving your future companions in the ship's hold in the Prologue
  • Helping Lohse kill Saheila
  • Breaking Gratiana's Soul Jar
  • Anything involving the Ice Dragon
  • Urging Gareth to kill Magister Jonathan
  • Kill Hannag's apprentice and his family
  • Betray Ryker
  • Hurting the frightened Dwarf near the Blackpits

Getting the tag

 

 The primary hurdle towards getting the villain tag is the requirement of at least one story event that qualifies. Luckily Fort Joy has three options for story events early on. Doing all three, or two out of the three and a few murders, will allow the player to get the tag very early in the game.




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    • Anonymous

      The way I did this (as Lohse, so you can't lie to Unnis for her gold since she won't really talk to you), if you don't have the patience to wait until you get Source Vampirism or you just want to get this over with quickly, was to side with Kana and Burro against Ifan and Elodi (Elodi has much more health than Ifan does, so while he goes down quickly, you may want to keep your distance from her), kill Sebille at her stakeout position near Stingtail (party members don't have much health when they're just NPCs; wait for Patrolman Kraus and his dog to be far away), get the oranges and drudanae from Stingtail, and then rat him out to Griff as the thief. For the remaining two murders, you can kill Doctor Leste when she's healing Dain (dropping a Fossil Strike on them both and then some follow-up spells on her makes for a very easy "twofer" since he has very little health anyway).

      • Anonymous

        I'm pretty sure i got it instantly after killing Migo and Yarrow. After completing their quest line. I'm pretty confident those both count as "murders" by the game's code but before reading this article i thought it's just an act evil enough on it's own

        • Anonymous

          the game wants you so bad to be a hero that it requires for you to act like a chaotic stupid maniac and kill every single person on sight, but for hero tag you need to do things every person would do - get xp from quests for people. Bullshit i say, i just killed 10 people in the camp and you tell me that giving migo's ring to some ******* for xp makes me a hero? I'm doing it for the gains , not the damn moral obligation. Getting villain shouldn't be so hard when getting hero is so easy.

          • Anonymous

            A funny thing about this mechanic is that this system actually means you can flood the entirety of Arx with deathfog and the game won't consider you a villain if you don't fulfill two other conditions as well. I came to test this and it actually breaks the ending. SPOILER WARNING


            YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED

            If you kill Arx and then get the villain tag or get the villain tag for killing Arx, you will not be able to persuade Braccus Rex in the final battle. I tried this and the (Villain) tag simply didn't show up. (I tried getting villain as I killed Arx but it didn't work.)

            • Anonymous

              I got this when I ate the soul of the "Canary" in the Blackpit Mines.
              Said Canary helped me get past the Shrieker, because for some reason it preferred to keep screaming at its corpse rather than me as I got past it and ate it.
              Worth noting that I only got it on the character that ate the chicken's soul (Ifan). My main character (Fane) still has the Hero tag.

              I'll be real careful about eating ghosts from now on...

              • Anonymous

                My friends and I got the villian tag in act 1 without even trying. We didn't even know about it. We killed EVERYONE except the shop keepers and the people in the Sanctuary camp. Act 2 is going to be interesting

                • I just did a complete rewrite of this article. I got frustrated with how inconsistent getting this tag felt, and that the instructions in this wiki page didn't seem accurate.

                  I loaded up the modding SDK, and went through damn near every relevant script and dialog to both confirm the mechanics, and find every location that triggers the mechanics.

                  • Anonymous

                    Just got the Villain Tag. Currently in Fort Joy. Got level 2 on the ship (attacking door guard on the way to Windego with the door open), skipped straight to the top of the ship, shot the child to skip the dialogue and to not have to save anyone. On Fort Joy, I deceived the Unnis into giving me her money (cannot do this as a human/undead human without Fane's mask), killed the turtles, assisted Ifan in dispatching with the two thugs, then assisted in freeing the locked elf by convincing the Lizard to give me the oranges, then ratting him out. Then I stole the Sparkler card, used it in a game with the three thugs on the tower area, then killed them. This made me hit level 3 and obtain the Villain tag immediately. I doubt it's relevant, but I skipped the dialogue with Atusa, Dallis and Alexander by climbing up on a ladder to the side of them.

                    If this doesn't work every time, then this system is probably random chance.

                    • Anonymous

                      I consumed the soul of the Swallow Man and then got the villian tag lmao. I've only used source vamparism on Blackring souls, and haven't done any of the other things listed above so idk

                      • Anonymous

                        I got the Villain tag at the end of a combat for targeting my teammate to hit the enemy, need verification. I also got both the Hero and Villain tag trought my playtrough once, but I think this was in beta, I don't know if it's still working

                        • Anonymous

                          anyone still trying to do this: after trying to figure out the fastest way for about an hour here's what i got... -start as an elf, i used a custom one for this -leave the ship without rescuing the origin characters -lie to unnis that you're taking her stuff for atusa -side with griffs people and kill ifan and elodi -tell griff it was stingtail who stole the oranges

                          • Anonymous

                            Killing the mind controlled Black Ring soldiers in the Blackpits seems to turn the needle toward Villain because i got the tag there

                            • Anonymous

                              Taking my mask off as Fane on the ship triggers the windego fight early. This combined with the fact that I am killing all npc's and pets who have been looted and are no longer quest relevant must have nabbed me this relatively quickly - by the time I got to Verdas, i had it :P

                              • Anonymous

                                Suddenly got the Villain tag after killing a group of White Magisters, Weaponized Monks, a Silent Watcher and some brainwashed Black Ring members. What. Might be because I said I was their reinforcements and then attacked them while they were neutral..?

                                • Anonymous

                                  I got it after useing the hero tag to stop ryker ritual and then consumed his sorce, i was so suprised by it that i imidetly quick loaded and redid the fight, not consumeing him this time, because i tought that i would lose my hero tag.

                                  • Anonymous

                                    Got my Villain tag after consuming the Sallow Man's source, like uuuuuummm he's gross? Only other thing I did out of that list is kill Ryker after completing his quest, and consuming Source from souls that were horrible people. Guess I'm evil now.

                                    • Anonymous

                                      Lmao I got the villain tag when facing Lohse's demon and used lightning storm and it broke all the chairs and gave me the tag... It is I destroyer of furniture FEAR ME

                                      • Anonymous

                                        Got it by "murdering" Trompdoy's irritating albeit neutral mocking illusory selves. Tho I did extort Unnis and tell Griff about Stingtail (with the intention to murder the assassin sent), and murder Migo and Yarrow after reuniting them, so I can't really say it's unfairly earned :v

                                        • Anonymous

                                          Using Source Vampirism on Sir Lora the Squirrel got me the Villain tag literally right after I'd gotten the Hero tag from saving the family being executed in the Blackpits. Had been playing a relatively balanced game, plenty of heroic things and some senseless XP and/or loot motivated murder, plenty of things played neutral. But the fact I got one then the other so quickly makes it seem to me it is not a balance, but perhaps a 1 +1 = tag type system, with most choices not affecting your status. Either way if you're hero and want villain and have the Lora DLC, try absorbing him bc that worked for me. Was unintentional, but I'm good with max dialogue options. Trying to mostly skew good, but am mostly playing it as a game as opposed to any strict RP. Also Lora seems pretty useless after he's taught you the skill or two he can, and was already dead, so I'm glad to be rid of them tbh. xD

                                          • Anonymous

                                            Got it all the way at the end of Act III inside the lady vengeance. Absorbed the souls of the companions I didn't choose. Also got the Hero tag before that, so I'm both.

                                            • Anonymous

                                              Been trying to get this, killed Buddy, Dain etc, set the elf free but cannot get this to trigger. Even killed Ifan and Elodi.

                                              • Anonymous

                                                I didn't do any of that stuff and triggered it... By attacking Radeka without talking to her beforehand... (I just gave stingtail but saved his ass rigth after)

                                                • Anonymous

                                                  I am both a villain and hero. I am the black and the white, the light and the dark, then yin and the yang. And I love. this. game!

                                                  PS I got hero by being generally awesome, villain by the stealing soul of nuns in Cloisterwood (though I also killed Blaine, the spider chick, the troll, Mordus, the undead upon second encounter, and rob anyone who turns their back to me)

                                                  • Anonymous

                                                    So I killed the elf kill Sahalia, and then freed Aymo or w/e but I'm never given the option to tell him that it was I, who killed her. If I follow him back to the cave he sees her dead and just tells me that he fails her obviously unaware that I did it and I am unable to tell him I did it.

                                                    • Anonymous

                                                      I tried to consume almost all the souls in ACTII, still does not get the tag, the developer must changed something here

                                                      • Anonymous

                                                        Another way is to kill the fire slug princess AFTER telling her Braccus Rex is dead(pet pal). The battle log will end with fire slug was murdered in cold blood. This will proc the villain counter.

                                                        • Anonymous

                                                          This***** is so broken. I did everything on this list + more and haven't gotten it. If you don't do a couple of *very* specific "evil" acts in the very beginning of Act 1, the amount of evil you need to do to "make up" for it is completely imbalanced.

                                                          • Anonymous

                                                            If you follow the quest The Teleporter for Gawin, way down on the beach you teleport him over there is a dead elf with a purple pouch on her. Bring it to another elf (also near the secret path Gawin leads you through up on the ridge to the left instead of the right) and you can handle the dialogue in a way that earns you the Villian Tag. You can get this very quickly then earn Hero by following that mad man quest line on the beach in Fort Joy and have both tag options available all game.

                                                            • Anonymous

                                                              I got mine by being evil during starting phase, i pick pocketed the other origins characters and got to unnis. Tried to manipulate her but failed so i had to kill her. Than at the entrance i sided with Griff's men and killed elodi and right after that took on imprisoned elf quest and ratted stingtail and got the tag. From here on out i'll be good, i promise :) (hopefully the tag won't disappear)

                                                              • Anonymous

                                                                I am trying my best to get this tag but failing to do so. I murdered many people in fort joy, couldn't reveal stingtail because sebille already killed him. I try to always answer in a menacing way in dialogues. Enslaved Lady vengeance still didn't get it. I tried to just straight up murder the meistr after freeing her, also didn't get me the villain tag. I am doing most quests optimally for most exp and then kill the people afterwards but somehow it doesn't seem to work.

                                                                • Anonymous

                                                                  I've gotten this tag on lohse after purging a crap load of people (like nearly every spirit I see I use source vampirism on), purged the entire army of ryker's slaves in the graveyard and his house.

                                                                  • Anonymous

                                                                    I got mine from killing the Skeleton assassin in the Swamps? Like previously I tricked Unnis, but it was several hours later, and my coop partner got it at the same time.

                                                                    • Anonymous

                                                                      Appears to be based on the balance between the good and bad deeds your character commits. I didn't unlock the tag until the end of the first act, after slaying most of the innocent people in Fort Joy. The specific dialogue option that unlocked it for me was telling the Livewood ship that it was under my control.

                                                                      • Anonymous

                                                                        I told Unnis that Atusa sent me to gather all of their belongings to pay for them to be smuggled out of joy and received the tag.

                                                                        • Anonymous

                                                                          To get the Villian tag you have to kill a quest giver I killed Ryke before doing his quest and got the villain tag

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