|Talon of Pyre
Repository of Knowledge
The Kragan Highlands is a large mountainous region within Westreach. The town of Skylight rests on the northern end of the Highlands, while the ruins of the Aurelian monastery remain scattered throughout. Members of the Shrike Syndicate and Geartooth Goblin encampments take refuge across the Highlands.
Nestled within the Westreach—a region claimed by both the Avar Imperium and the Maze—The Highlands knew strife long before the Gloomfall shattered the rest of Evenor's lands. In fact it was the Empire which first fortified Skylight and established the Codex Monasteries, whose ruins now litter the region's mountainside. Rich in the arcanic fuel godsblood and emboldened by the prosperous city of Skylight, the area was once renowned for its Trade Road—a gleaming promise of the prosperity to come. A promise broken by the Fall. Cut off from the rest of the Evenor by the Gloom, the Highlands now subsists as a warren of craters and Gloom Tears alike. What fortune still persists is scalped by the Shrikes, and few wayfarers venturing the region live to see their destination, imperiled by gloomtouched beasts. Only Skylight remains. Our last, dwindling light before the coming end.
The Highlands is a large open world area with various Enemies that respawn after being defeated. Quests and events can be accepted and completed in this area along with collecting Echoes, Accessories, Imbuements, and Resources by defeating enemies and/or looting. Traveling throughout the open world area is made easy by use of Signal Fires once they are discovered. Lost Zones can also be accessed at their respective Gloom Gates which become accessible as players progress through main story quests. World Bosses also spawn periodically in pre-determined areas of the Highlands that do not change. World boss interactions are best tackled with at least 3 or more Wayfinders.
Soulbound chests when approached will lock themselves with 2 large, green spectral chains and spawn 1-3 enemies within a small radius infront of them. The chest will unlock once all soulbound enemies have been defeated, which are marked with chains glowing near their feet. Soulbound chests may reward Imbuements along with the standard chest rewards.
Certain locations will have a small Gloom tear beginning to form. Approaching the tear and cutting it with the Gloom Dagger will cause it to widen, spawning Gloom reinforcements.
Opening the Tear
The tear will summon three waves of Gloom enemies to defend itself, with each wave having a time limit of one and half minute:
- Wave 1: Tidings, Wretches, Heralds
- Wave 2: Wretches, Seers, Oracles
- Wave 3: Foul Wretches, Heralds, Oracles
During the third wave, six small Prophecies will circle the outer edge of the area. Defeating these before finishing the wave will alter the event into it's Heroic variant.
Eliminating the Source
After clearing the third wave, the Gloom tear will open and allow entry into a pocket of pure Gloom. Players must traverse platforms to reach the Ninth Herald. Defeating the Prophecies and enabling the Heroic variant will awaken the Heart Ripper instead of the Ninth Herald. In either case, players will have eight minutes to defeat the source of the tear.
Sphere of Influence
Upon crashing into the ground, the meteor will emit a large sphere of Gloom, Gloomtouching nearby wildlife and causing them to defend the meteor. The sphere is easily visible from a distance, which can help locate crashed meteors.
Destroying the Meteor
Entering the sphere will begin the event, and players will have five minutes to shatter the meteor. Defeating the Gloomtouched wildlife will make the meteor vulnerable to damage. After being damaged once, the meteor will become invulnerable and summon Gloom reinforcements, which include Wretches, Foul Wretches, Husks, Heralds, Seers, and Oracles. Defeating a wave of Gloom enemies will leave the meteor vulnerable once more and the process repeats.
After striking the meteor four times, the meteor will collapse to reveal a Dire Prophecy. Players will then have five minutes to defeat the Dire Prophecy.
The Gluttonous Wurm event is what controls whether or not Night's Maw can be and is spawned, as it is directly tied to the spawning mechanism for the boss.
Summoning the Wurm
In the wurm's den there is 3 locations a player can interact with to place Wurm Bait, if bait can be placed there will be a blueish-white light over the pedestals. Once all 3 Wurm Baits are placed; Night's Maw will immediately spawn at the center point of the 3 locations and begin attacking the nearest player.
Night's Maw has a series of attacks depending on the range of it's current target which consists of a set of sweep attacks of varying strength and damage that hit all players within melee range and a web spitting attack which will apply poison and immobilise/slow the player. "Maw" is also capable of spawning smaller Wurms in groups of 3 to assist during the fight, as these are only level 4 they are often killed from stray shots or melee arcs.
When "Maw" takes enough damage it will tunnel to one of two other locations within the same large room and the fight continues as normal, this can occur one more time and it will tunnel to the last location in the room.
In the Highlands, within Outer Aurelian, a trio of Embered Shuuls use their magic to summon a Primeval Duskhunter, a Primeval Shurrk, or a Primeval Wurm. Their magic renders them and the primeval creature invulnerable to damage until all three Shuuls have been distracted. During the ritual, Goblin Scavengers, Goblin Hunters, and Goblin Hackers will defend the ritual from invaders.
Disrupting the Rite
Entering the ritual site will begin the event, and players will have three minutes to defeat at least two of the Embered Shuuls. One of the Embered Shuuls will break from the ritual and fight off nearby Wayfinders. After the first Shuul has been defeated, another will break off to defend the ritual. Once the third Shuul has been distracted, the primeval creature will be released, and players will have ten minutes to defeat the creature.
The Great Lift
The Great Lift was designed by the scrapers and watchers of Venge at the edge of Skylight, the last city that overlooks the vast and wild expanse of the Highlands. Although its origins remain somewhat unclear, we know that it was constructed with the agreement of Wolf, the commander over Skylight, and with the supervision of Venge and the Engineer who currently resides in Skylight. By using it from the edge of Skylight, players have direct access to the Highlands.
The Lower Skylight
The Highlands begin in Lower Skylight, accessible by The Great Lift, where a fierce war over resources is taking place between the people of Skylight and the Shrikes, bandits and criminals of the area. The war has been going on for a long time, shortly after the invasion of the world by the Gloom.
Lower Skylight is watched over and led by Warden Hass, who strives to maintain a semblance of order within the walls of the last city. Her soldiers, called "Watchers", are in perpetual surveillance on the still standing walls of the outpost as the lower quarter is infested with rats and bandits, it would be imprudent to leave the entrance to Skylight unguarded. There are important characters among the Watchers, such as Watcher Isti and Watcher Hagran.
Although Lower Skylight is in eternal conflict with the bandits, the ruined city is still active, so much so that the local tavern accepts any clients. Lower Skylight has a Signal Fire where the player can take refuge and teleport if necessary. It's a safe place for players and the starting point for the adventure of Wayfinders such as yourself.
The place is overrun by Thunder Eyes (sharpshooters) and Enforcers. It's advisable to prepare carefully before venturing there as there are a few barrels of toxic poison that can prove dangerous, even deadly to careless players. This area is an excellent place to farm Green Specters.
There's also an Echo Matrix, a spot to retrieve health vials, and a campfire where players can take refuge. At first glance, the Pit appears to be an inhospitable place where coal and poison reside. It seems to be an abandoned oil factory overrun by miscreants.
The Codex Hall
Previously, the Codex Halls were the home of many Aurelian scholars and monks who studied the Architects, beings responsible for the creation of the Beacons and the world itself. Even before the invasion of the Gloom, the Codex Hall was in ruins, full of history and mystery.
Today, ravaged by time and infested with goblins, the ruins of Codex Hall are a warm place. Archers and warriors can be found everywhere in the zone, even though they are low-level, they can still be a common problem for new players. The place also hides a few treasures - fragments of memory, a campfire to take refuge and healing potions.
The Crossroads Foundry
The Crossroad Foundry is of paramount importance for commerce and the commercial routes of the Highlands. In fact, the protectors of the foundry, known as "The Scrappers and Venge Watch," are responsible for transforming all metal objects and vehicle wrecks into scrap metal that will be used mainly for Skylight's protection.
The foundry is currently located on the eastern side of the map, perched on a cliff overlooking Codex Hall. The supervisor of the foundry is Brother Megan with his second, Venge Watch Fuller. Currently in conflict with the "Gear Teeth" goblins, it is difficult for the watch to establish a safe commercial route between Aurelian and Skylight since the attacks are incessant and challenging for Venge's caravans.
The zone gets its name from its bloody history. In fact, the bloody galleries were once a plentiful source of Godsblood, a resource essential for creating weapons and vehicles of all kinds. Nowadays, it is dominated and owned by the Shrike Syndicate. However, before the Gloomfall, the monks of the Silver Codex emptied the mine of its precious minerals for their own unknown reasons.
The Undercroft and the Ironstone Keep
The haunted nature of this place still fascinates the scrapers of Venge and the researchers of Skylight. It was once famous for being the home of the greatest scholars of the Order of the Silver Codex, a disciplined group of people who lived solely for the doctrines of the Architects and had a good relationship with the Empire. Today, the Undercroft is an isolated place overrun by the Remnants, echoes of the people who once lived there.
The Ironstone Keep is a haunted place where warriors, who fought in pre-Gloomfall wars between the Avar Imperium and the Maze, still roam. The place speaks for itself, with its dilapidated state and the scars of past battles and conflicts.
The place still preserves numerous vestiges of its history, led by the Monks of the Silver Codex. There are also effigies depicting the Codex agents and an imposing tower that once derived its glory from the pride of the Architects themselves.
The Outer Aurelian
Aurelian is an Imperial outpost that was made up of equal parts library, temple, and arcane workshop. It existed a few decades before the Gloomfall, and once housed the greatest scholars and researchers in the world. Even today, the outer route is used by a multitude of trade caravans heading towards the Crossroads Foundry to sell goods that will be used by the scrapers and workers of Venge in Skylight.
The place is a massive ruin of a monastery overrun by highly advanced goblins who practice occult arts and rituals to summon ancient echoes of monsters like the original Shurks, the first of its kind.
The ruined place reveals a massive bell that seems to have belonged to an immense bell tower, perhaps in honor of the Architects. Even though today the place has reclaimed its natural balance over time, one cannot ignore the invasive goblin influence and the influence of the Silver Codex of the past.
The Repository of Knowledge
The Repository of Knowledge, located in the deep south of the Highlands, is part of the monastery that spanned across the Highlands. Home to the Order of the Silver Codex, an order of monks and scholars that studied and researched the Architects.
The ruins present in the zone refer to a massive bell tower and a majestic planetarium, perhaps in direct reference to the falling stars mentioned by Brother Megan who currently oversees the foundry. The bell tower, formerly known as the Tower, is closely linked to the Gloom now, as it is believed the leader of the Silver Codex, resided in the Repository, and was responsible for the Fall of the monastery. The Repository of Knowledge is now infested with echoes of former members of the order who are still dangerous to players.
The archives possess and hold the darkest secrets of the dark age and may contain crucial information about the origin of the sudden disappearance of the Architects, as well as the origin of the Gloom.
The Giant Bell
The giant Bell is directly related to the Monastery of the Silver Codex, the direct cause of the invasion of the Gloom and the murder of the Gods of the Skylight world. It was the former residence of the members of the Codex and the Monks of the Archives of Aurelian.
The Colossal Blade of the Silver Codex
The Monumental Archonte Sword located near the low quarter of Skylight seems to be an ancient residence for deceased members of the Codex, probably those who have marked history. The sword, however, is the direct symbol of the Codex legionnaires equipped by the Archonte Commander. It is also the sword of choice, embedded in Aurelian tombs, statues, and vestiges, which suggests that it is a collection of several tombs, possibly an ancient Hall of Heroes.
The Grave adorned
The Grave adorned with a shield, a lion, a snake, and two owls is very mysterious. Based on my own hypothesis, the owl represents wisdom, the lion represents courage, and the snake represents Cunning, which are all the qualities of The First, the former leader of the Silver Codex. Perhaps the place expresses the final resting place of the corrupted soul of the former leader of the Silver Codex. The Silver Codex seems to have had three sub-orders that formed a complete order.
- The Lion: represents the Archontes like the Commander, as he represents courage.
- The Owl : represents wisdom, probably the influence of the Silver Hand.
- The Snakes : were supposed to represent the monks and agents of the Codex who were the first responsible for the invasion of the Gloom, an animal perfect for such a ruse.
The Magic Lantern
The Lantern emanates a blue light like that used by Falling Stars; the monsters that approach it are imbued with a glow and a glossy carapace, as well as an unwavering aggression. Located near the Sword, it suggests that the Codex may have installed it there to confine the monsters inside the cave where it resides to keep undesirables away.
The Tomb of the Knight
located sadly near Outer Aurelian, seems to belong to someone important. However, it is isolated in the basement of the Monastery, and it is probably the "Gathered Hand," the leader of the Silver Hand, a group that was responsible for Codex emissary missions. The presence of the monastery bell not far from the tomb, located under the catacombs of the monastery itself, is a major clue to this hypothesis, as it is adorned with the symbols of the Planétarium. Another interesting fact is that in the "Silver Hand" dungeon, the same bell and symbol of the Silver Hand order, namely the owl, which represented the side of wisdom, can be found.