Tainted Sun is the third quest of Act II. It is triggered when a player enters the Lost City, upon which a sudden eclipse occurs, engulfing the land with darkness. After talking to Drognan in Lut Gholein, it becomes clear that this is the work of the Claw Vipers, and the player is told to end this curse by traveling to the Claw Viper Temple.
The Claw Viper Temple is located in the small Valley of Snakes, which is adjacent to the Lost City. The Temple itself is filled with Claw Vipers and Salamanders. Players should look for the Tainted Sun Altar, which is hidden on the second level of the Temple. Players will encounter more monsters here, including the Super Unique boss known as Fangskin. After the monsters have been defeated, the Tainted Sun Altar must be shattered, finally restoring the sun to its former glory.
Players should also pick up the Amulet of the Viper, which is final component needed to complete the Horadric Staff quest. After the Altar has been destroyed and the sun restored, head back to Lut Gholein and speak to the townsfolk to complete the quest.
NPC Quest Dialog
Atma: "Drognan, the wizard, will have some idea as to what is happening."
Deckard Cain: "Drognan may have some advice on this matter. Hmm... I think I'll speak with him myself."
Drognan: "I've been researching this lengthy eclipse and I believe it to be the work of Claw Vipers. Find their temple beneath the desert sands and you may find the source of this curse."
Elzix: "Two men arrived late last night bearing a story about evil magic. They said they saw a gathering of giant snake creatures performing some arcane ritual. They sound like the Serpent Men of the desert."
Fara: "This unnatural nightfall is no doubt caused by evil sorcery. Drognan might know what we are dealing with."
Geglash: "This whole place is one big ale fog."
Greiz: "This midday darkness reeks of foul magic! My men and I are trying to keep the peace, but this kind of thing really scares people."
Jerhyn: "My astrologers failed to predict this eclipse. You should seek Drognan's advice."
Lysander: "Claw Vipers! This outer darkness mirrors the inner blackness of their souls. It is they who have eclipsed the sun, I'll wager. They are a venomous band."
Meshif: "This permanent darkness is very unsettling. Hmm... It would make navigation by stars easier for me, though."
Warriv: "The sun has grown disgusted with the terrible deeds it must shine upon each day. Damnation is upon us all."
Atma: "I was going to go to bed, but then I realized that I have no idea what time it is. It could be the crack of dawn, for all I know."
Deckard Cain: "The source of this spell is probably a magical altar. It will not be enough to kill the Claw Vipers. To reverse the spell you must destroy the altar."
Drognan: "I've discovered a reference to a similar eclipse several hundred years ago. It says that some desert-dwelling snake demons had erected an evil altar, which caused the sun to go black. Perhaps we are dealing with something similar here. Look for an altar in the Claw Viper temple."
Elzix: "I usually charge for rooms by the night. But I may have to soon change that."
Fara: "The Claw Vipers practice evil magic. They have also been known to kidnap travelers and sacrifice them to their dark gods."
Geglash: "It's strange when the morning after the night before... is still the same night."
Greiz: "Don't worry! My men and I have an iron grip on this town. If those cursed Claw Vipers are plotting anything against us, we'll be prepared for 'em."
Jerhyn: "This eclipse is a definite manifestation of evil."
Lysander: "Well... I don't know much about the habits of Claw Vipers, to be honest. Drognan will probably know something about the nature of the magic at work."
Meshif: "I've had about enough of this darkness. I don't even know what day it is anymore."
Warriv: "The calculated coldness of the reptilian brain makes the Claw Vipers uncanny adversaries."
Atma: "You have done well to restore light to our world."
Deckard Cain: "I've been speaking with Lord Jerhyn, and I sense that he is becoming more and more agitated by something. You should try to talk to him again. If he still won't take you into his confidence, seek to prove yourself a bit more. I gather that his respect for you is growing."
Drognan: "You did well in destroying the Claw Vipers. We are all glad to see the sun returned to its former glory."
Elzix: "Ahh... It takes but one eye to revel in the beauty of our restored sun."
Fara: "Drognan seems to have taken you into his confidence. This is good, for you will benefit from his wisdom."
Geglash: "So, this is daylight... It's over-rated."
Greiz: "I'm glad that's over with!"
Jerhyn: "The sun again shines on Lut Gholein! I'm beginning to like you, traveler."
Lysander: "Ahhh... Claw Vipers are fond of magical artifacts. Did you happen to find one in their temple?"
Meshif: "So... Did you plunder any booty?"
Warriv: "With renewed daylight, one may gather the wits that were scattered about like restrictive undergarments in the darkness."