Vainglory Hero Canon: What We Know So Far


#1

Content Archived from the Original Vainglory forums - originally posted by “TheGreatClockwyrm” on the “4th of September 2016” archived by @thace

Greetings all! As far as the Vainglory game goes, the awesome game we all know and love is driven by a rich and complex canon. SugarVenom, who is SEMC’s entire lore department, has gifted us with said canon, incorporating the plethora of varied characters one can play in the game into a rich, expansive canon of queens and rebels, magic and machines, humans and monsters. As a way to keep the community updated, I have compiled this thread to serve as the master one in regards to what the community knows so far about SugarVenom’s headcanon on the heroes of the Halcyon Fold.

Everything you see below is 100% canon, straight from the published works of SugarVenom and through her comments on the forums and Reddit, although there is some speculation on my part based on solid implication or hinted content. Skin lores are technically not canon, so I did not include them, however, knowledge about the world gained through those lores were used. It was hard to keep myself from delving too deep into theorycrafting, which is something I would want to explore more extensively in the future. Nevertheless, cheers, and I hope you enjoy! Oh, and I guess big SPOILER ALERT for everything that follows.

For now, we’ll start with the playable heroes and what we know about them. Note that other related information may also be explored within their sections. Since the heroes are all we really have concrete information about, I won’t get into factions, geography, NPCs, or other lore topics for now, unless they are explained within a specific hero’s arc, and even then it will most likely be speculation. Later, perhaps when we have more information about the world as a whole, will I create further threads such as this.

Oh, and do yourself a favor and visit this link before you skim this thread and then type a mundane good job at the end. You’d be doing yourself a disservice to read my humble explanations before the actual stuff itself. Hope you enjoy!


#2
Adagio

Adagio is a near-omnipotent half-dragon demigod gifted with extraordinary magical power. Apathetic and aloof, Adagio views the Fold as a breeding ground for mortals perhaps worthy enough to entertain him. The battles over the Well’s power, a political struggle of life or death, serve as little more than an amusing pastime for a being as long-lived Adagio, who has lived for centuries. He has also been referred to as ‘the Immortal’, which may simply be a title referring to his longevity, or perhaps he truly is immortal. The extent of the power he wields remians to be seen, however, he has been said to be able to ‘level the Fold itself with a single flick of the wrist’, and decimate everyone on it in a heartbeat. He refrains from doing so because it would be too easy for him. When winning comes as easily as it does to individuals as as powerful as Adagio, it grows mundane through the passage of time. His magical power manifests in the form of a blue flame that can both heal and burn, but his ultimate ability, Verse of Judgement, shows that Adagio can also potentially wield vast runic power as well. His fire is able to strengthen battle prowess and can undo spells from other mages, shown when he temporarily nullifies a time-freeze spell. He has been described as a ‘seraphim’, a typically Judeo-Christian term denoting an angel, and as an ‘aristocratic, ancient dragon prince’ which may mean his Elder Dragon lineage is a royal one. Very little is known about the Elder Dragons as a race or what differentiates themselves from simply a ‘regular’ dragon, if said differentiation exists.

As of now, Adagio is the hero we perhaps know least about, which is probably something he himself would prefer. Aside from the brief descriptions in the client and wiki, there is only one canonical piece centered around Adagio, titled ‘The Dark Parade’. In it, Adagio holds court amidst the gargantuan skeleton of an Elder Dragon, his throne situated in its eye socket. Politicians and nobles alike come to him to ask favors from the demigod, and each time he refuses, accepting only their gifts. He has a young psychic girl in his service who reads his thoughts in order to speak for him, as he is too apathetic to deign to speak to the lesser mortals. The theme (which is said to be annual) of the Dark Parade is birds, and so his courtiers dress up in a variety of feathered costumes. He is visited by a Bleekos ruler and a Prince Cuthbert, before having the Parade interrupted by an unnamed witch who freezes everyone but herself and Adagio in time. She asks him for a dance, to which he obliges, before departing, freeing the others from her spell, but not before stealing a single blue feather from one of his wings…

Alpha

Alpha, in life known as Daisy, was once a Stormguard tasked with defending a remote well of power on an unnamed island. Daisy trained with Kestrel, who taught her to count her hits when fighting. However, she was slain by Krul, a ruthless undead berserker, who sought the power of the Well to free him from perpetual undeath. Her body was recovered through unknown means and delivered to Frankie, a dwarf in the employ of the Storm Queen (fun fact, also the guy that made SAWborg). Through unknown means he was able to revive her, and decapitated her body to place the head on a robotic one, wiping all her past memories except for battle prowess. Technology akin to a bacta tank seems to have been involved in the process. However, the memory wipe appears to have been flawed, as Daisy, now known as Alpha, periodically remembers and repeats phrases said to her by both Kestrel and Krul, and also counts her hits. Every time this happens, however, Alpha ‘reboots’, causing her to lose her memories again. The Storm Queen visits Frankie and inspects his progress, planning to use Alpha as the perfect soldier to hunt down insurgent Stormguard who have thrown in with Celeste, the rival heir to Mont Lille, the seat of the Storm Queen’s power. Upon completion, the Storm Queen sics Alpha on two apparently loyal Stormguard, Livia and Elena, who had chosen to return to their Queen and not flee with their brethren. Alpha brutally murders the two, but Frankie and the Storm Queen remain apathetic, only noting the efficiency at which Alpha kills.

Rumours soon spread of a faceless shadow eliminating those who stand against the Storm Queen. Two royal families and six more Stormguard are murdered and left for the crows due to their loyalty to Celeste. The Taizen Gate, a location assumedly located within Mont Lille or the surrounding Eventide cities, is populated by varied Bosses, who seem to be more or less powerful gangsters. Three meet with a host of Stormguard and mages under the command of a Stormguard named Marelde, one of them through hologram. Before the Stormguards learn anything from the Bosses Alpha attacks, slaughtering the Stormguard but leaving the two present Bosses unharmed. Later, Alpha attacks an insurgent Stormguard base, killing three Stormguard. However, Kestrel recognizes Alpha, which temporarily causes her to reassume the idenity of Daisy again to speak with Kestrel. However, a violent reboot soon occurs and Kestrel and Catherine are forced to flee. Alpha predicts their destination to be one place: the Halcyon Fold. The intent is to kill Kestrel and Catherine, two remaining insurgent Stormguard, however, it is possible Daisy wants to get revenge on Krul. The power of the Well also might be able to reverse her condition.

Ardan

The father of Celeste and Vox, Ardan is a technologist warrior who eloped with Julia, the sister of the Storm Queen and true heir to the throne. However, in doing so, Julia faked her death to ensure that she and her new family would not be plagued by her past life, in which she had struggled to find happiness due to distance with her sister, Louisa, and fear of the true powers at work behind the throne.

Ardan is a member of the Technologist faction of Gythia, a provincial splinter group that rebelled during a civil war over Gythia’s lack of wells of power. They eventually blew a hole in Gythia’s famed Wall, and since then the Gythian powers-that-be and the Technologists have forged a tenuous piece, although it is strongly hinted that they may soon rejoin to unite against the Storm Queen. Ardan is highly reflective of his culture and is very mechanically gifted, having built his own battle suit. Despite his great love for his wife and children, he has a distrust of magic, believing that it and technology should not mix. Despite this, his gruff demeanor belies an fervent desire to protect his children at all costs, and he has also shown key traits of humility and stubbornness, matched only perhaps by his daughter. Like, I cannot express how much Ardan loves his kids and wants to protect them. He feels that he already failed Julia, and does not want any harm to come to his son or daughter.

He and Julia lived in a small Gythian farming province named Pompium, which is under the control of the technologists. They lived in relatively plebeian conditions, ekeing out a living through Ardan’s creations. Julia buys a goat in hopes of making extra profit off of its cheese, although the two argue over its practicality and economic benefit. Unbeknowst to both, the Storm Queen had learned of Julia’s survival and tracked her to Pompium, most likely through her ominiscient network of haze ravens, the collective entity referred to as Vyn. The Storm Queen dispatches Catherine to kidnap the twins Celeste and Vox, who at this point are toddlers; but specifically warns Catherine to not commit regicide by killing Julia. Kestrel, a prominent Stormguard archer, is also on the team. Catherine and Kestrel attack in the night, however, Kestrel’s irritation with the goat’s cries causes her to kill it prematurely, warning Ardan inside that something is wrong. Ardan manages to get on the majority of his battle suit, and with help from Julia’s protective magic, defeats most of the Stormguard, including Kestrel. However, Catherine arrives, overpowering Ardan and siezing both Julia and the twins, forcing Ardan to choose. Ardan dives for the twins and escapes through the window, so Catherine impales Julia with the point of her arc shield.

Ardan and the growing twins spend the next decade fleeing from Stormguard forces, using assumed names. The twins are instructed to not use magic in public or draw attention to themselves in any other way. However, the two sneak off to an illicit Masker-Rage carnival populated by hoodlums and druggies, to ride the ‘Carnie Wheel’ so that they can use their magic in safety high above the masses, in the polluted city of Boiling Bay. Both experiment with their power, however, Celeste’s gets out of hand and she damages the Carnie Wheel, causing both her and Vox to fall to the ground below. Ardan arrives and saves them both, but not before Stormguard forces arrive at the scene, as do a host of Gythian mages seeking to protect Celeste. The Gythians help Ardan, Celeste, and Vox escape via titanback (large semi-aquatic dinosaur turtle thing, more on fauna later) to the Halcyon Fold, in hopes of recruiting the powerful individuals assembled there to the Gythians’, now Celeste’s, cause: overthrow her aunt and take the throne.

See Alpha, Catherine, and Kestrel for more.

Blackfeather and Phinn

Blackfeather is a self-proclaimed adventurer and rogue, armed not only with a sword but also his disarming wit and looks. In an attempt to prove his bravado and earn a name for himself, he teams up with the easy-going river troll Phinneas, and the two (read: just Blackfeather) conspire to abduct Princess Malene, the heir to a small kingdom, on whom there is a considerable bounty. Blackfeather’s affected loquacity and forced attempts at villainy contrast starkly with Phinn’s general politeness and knack to deliver rumbling, humbling one-liners. The two banter on the matter of the kidnapping Malene, and Blackfeather cheats Phinn out of a fair portion of the ransom, although Phinn doesn’t let on that he knows and doesn’t mind, preferring instead to have an engaging friend. Blackfeather, armed with a sword and rose, laments not having a grappling hook, but Phinn produces an anchor he apparently took from their arrival ship. Phinn scales the wall with his anchor and chain, Blackfeather clinging to his back.

The two arrive at Malene’s room at the top of the tower, only to find that she herself set the bounty, proclaiming that all proper princesses get kidnapped and that she wanted to earn a name for herself in the same way that Blackfeather has intended too. Though initially afraid of Phinn, whom she had not expected, Malene soon grows to like him when he adopts her pet bird, which he names Susie. Malene disregards Blackfeather’s advances and guides the clueless duo through the minutia of a proper kidnapping, before allowing herself to be carried over the balcony and into the maze of hedges surrounding her parents’ castle. In the maze of hedges, the trio run into a gang of mercenaries also after the bounty, and they try to sieze Malene, but Blackfeather chases two off whilst taunting them, proving he isn’t all talk and is quite adept with his sword. However, the third makes off with Malene, and Blackfeather is forced to ask Phinn for help. Phinn uses his anchor to pull the mercenaries back, and Malene falls into Blackfeather’s arms. Unfortunately, she pricks her arm on a poisonous rose and falls into a coma. The next day, Phinn fishes and naps while Blackfeather tries unsuccessfully to wake her with a kiss. Phinn informs him that only seraphim feathers can wake sleeping princesses, and Blackfeather vows to acquire one. Their presence on Halcyon implies that they have heard of Adagio and seek to procure one of his feathers in order to wake Malene.

Catherine

Catherine, the general of the Stormguard and the Queen’s Shield, was a childhood friend of Julia’s and the Storm Queen’s. It is perhaps due to this fact that she rose to such height amongst the Stormguard’s ranks, although very little is known of her early years. A cold, calculating exterior hides a deeply personal and caring woman within, dedicated to preserving the integrity of the throne and whosoever sits upon it. Trained from youth to wield a deadly arc shield to both protect and profane, Catherine learned that there are no names, no lives on the battlefield - only weapons, and ways to protect herself from them. However, Catherine’s complexity and internal moral dilemnas make her one of the most fascinating characters in the story, at least for me.

After Julia eloped with Ardan and was presumed dead, it is revealed that Catherine knew that she was alive, and has been making regular visits to see her in disguise. The Storm Queen soon learns of Julia’s survival and tasks Catherine with tracking her down and bringing the twins to Mont Lille. Catherine tells Julia of her mission during one of their meetings, and tells her that Stormguard have already surrounded Pompium, making escape nigh impossible. She tells Julia she will look after the twins at Mont Lille, but Julia refuses, instructing Catherine to murder her in order to allow Ardan to escape in the chaos, as mages are most powerful in the moment of their death. Catherine initally refuses to do so, finally breaking and promising to make it quick. Later that night, she, Vyn, and a team of Stormguard arrive at Ardan and Julia’s home. Ardan manages to defeat most of the Stormguard, but Catherine knocks him down and seizes Julia, her two excorts siezing the twins. Ardan saves the twins and dives through a window, and Catherine kills Julia with her arc shield.
Catherine, having commited regicide, flees, and spends the next few years on the run from Stormguard. She joins up with an unnamed army to fight over a country border dispute, and takes the general of the army as her lover. However, she is found by Kestrel and a band of Stormguard, who kill the general in his sleep. The Stormguard move to assassinate Catherine, but Kestrel refuses to kill one of their own, instead shooting Vyn from the across the clearing. The other Stormguard declare Kestrel a traitor, too, but the two manage to convince the others that their loyalty is not to the Queen, but to each other, reminding each one how much Catherine had done for them in the past. Upon learning that Ardan and the twins are alive and well, the Stormguard declare open rebellion against the Storm Queen and move to support Celeste’s claim. However, Alpha soon hunts down and murders the majority of the insurgent Stormguard, and only Kestrel and Catherine escape. Her current whereabouts on Halcyon imply that she means to meet up with Celeste and pledge full support, however, this will prove difficult…as, er, she killed her mother.

(Thank you Moalze!: One of Catherine’s quotes, ‘Four Stormguard still walk this earth’ implies that all the Stormguard save for her, Kestrel, AAmie, a mage who survived Alpha’s attack on the rebel base, have been slain by Alpha, and perhaps Daisy/Alpha. That kinda sucks if there’s no more Stormguard, however, it remains to be seen as to whether Cath is referring to ALL Stormguard, or only the ‘true’ ones who support her and Celeste.)

See Alpha, Ardan, and Kestrel for more.

Celeste and Vox

Celeste and Vox, the twin children of Julia and Ardan, are powerful mageborn. Celeste, the true heir to the throne after her mother’s death, is a heliomage - her power stems from her ability to command vast celestial power in order to manipulate and creates stars, black holes, and other heavenly bodies at will, albeit on a much smaller scale. She does this with help from her staff, powered by a raw hunk of crystal, to augment and focus her power. Vox, on the other hand, is a sonomage, having great power over the properties of sound, able to silence, amplify, and destroy it, as well as storing and repeating sounds at will. This magic can also be used to form bolts of sonic energy to attack. Vox’s suit appears to be technologically enhanced (perhaps by his father) to help tune his power.

See Ardan for more details.

Most of what we technically know about the twins, unfortunately, is not canon and contained with the ‘Rise of the Star Queen’ lore series, which details the hypothetical future in which Celeste, Vox, and Gythia wage war against the Storm Queen and Mont Lille. In it, Vox gets a space fleet, Catherine kills the Storm Queen, Celeste installs a skylight, Vyn corrupts her, some all around cool stuff. Highly recommended.

What we do know are a few crucial things. One, Celeste and Vox are very much brother and sister - Vox loves to teases and mess with her, but in the end would do anything to protect her, as all good brothers would. Celeste is the more level-headed of the two, stubborn and proud in her own right, but also very kind and soft-spoken. Vox is immature and mischevious, but also brave and loyal to his sister. His persona is a very enigmatic one, and displays signs of AD(H)D. Stories from his perspective move at a very frenetic and modern pace. Two, Celeste looks a lot like her mother, braids her hair in the same way, and also has her pointed ears (as Vox wears his hood most of the time, it is unknown whether he has them as well). She has also apparently inherited Julia’s accent, although her voice and Catherine’s (which is an English one) do not carry similar accents. This tells us that Mont Lille may have numerous ethnic variations on its language(s), or that Catherine is not originally from the area. Third, Celeste now identifies as a mageborn Gythian and has allied herself with them, as opposed to a technologist like her father. Four, the twins have never had much chance to use or experiment with their power, as Ardan had prohibited them from using it for most of their life. The two are essentially novices in their magic, and are under the tutelage of a mage named Elizar (who appears to be her loyal advisor but is actually working to ensure Gythia’s empire prospers under Celeste, caring not which Queen is on the throne). Celeste’s magic also appears to have potentially cataclysmic power, and is more difficult to control. I mean, she basically makes black holes. If that’s not destructive, I don’t know what is.

The twins and Ardan, alongside some Gythain warmages, including Elizar, hitched a ride on a titanback and are now on their way to Halcyon. There they hope to gather powerful allies to aid them in their upcoming rebellion against their aunt.

Fortress and Rona

Fortress is the guardian of a Vain well, tasked with keeping its tremendous power safe from human hands. The alpha of his pack of direwolves, Fortress stands as tall as a man and can speak like one too. He guards a northern well amidst a wasteland of ice and snow, the very same well powered by the breath of a fallen giant, Gudmund, whose sleeping form lies locked away beneath the roots of the all-encompassing Great Oak. Fortress takes great pride in his position, and enacts it with great dignity.

Fortress’s well is located within a great temple surrounded by rings, possibly signifying ley lines or other powerful magical wardings. One day, the ice within the bounds of each rings cracks and melts, and the water then mixes with the hard earth beneath to make mud. From the mud comes great thorny vines that tear down the temple, and reptilian beasts attack as well. The wolves almost manage to drive the lizards off, but hordes of insects attack the pack, plagueing the survivors with stings and bites. Fortress sends one wolf away to get help and then lets loose a resounding howl, calling to an ‘old friend’. This old friend appears to be a mysterious druid mentioned in previous lores, who is on his way to visit the Great Oak to make sure the giants buried in its roots are still slumbering. The druid was previously accompanied by a young berskerker named Rona, however, he left her behind at the village to flee with her people, from a mysterious force known only as the Churn. Rona mentions how the druid’s people, antlered humanoids, were the first to civilize the tundra and are learned in mathematics, writing, and astronomy. Anyways, it is implied that the attack occurred do to a destabilization of the energy within the well, cracking the ice and hatching the lizard and insect eggs hidden beneath the surface.

Nonethelesss, Fortress and the survivors of the attack pull the druid’s sled through the snow to the Great Oak. Long ago, Gunnr was the mother of two powerful giant elders, Gudmund and Gymir, although the brothers both fostered deep hatred and jealousy towards each other. Their rivalry quickly escalated into violence, so Gunnr wove a song-spell to put them both to sleep, burying Gudmund in the frozen wastes of the north and Gymir in the south. She then transformed herself into the Great Oak and ensnared them both within the bounds of her roots. The breath of each brother is what powers the well aboveground. We know that Gudmund’s well was under Fortress’s protection, and Gymir’s is the one on Halcyon. [Side-note: I speculate that there is probably one near Mont Lille, that being the seat of the Storm Queen’s empire. We know Gythia has none, but I’m willing to bet that the Meekos have one, and that the powers-that-be in Churnguard Industries are either experimenting on replicating vain energy or have access to one of their own (most likely Halcyon’s)].

Anyways, Fortress and his pack safely escort the druid to the tree. Both Fortress and the druid consume magic acorns (yes) that allow them to communicate with the Great Oak. In the process, the druid is transformed into his younger self. The druid requests passage through the tree to the other side of the world, in order to visit Gymir, to which she obliges, however, on the condition that he stay with her. Fortress initially objects, then says his farewells as the tree absorbs the druid into herself, before opening a portal for Fortress and his pack to cross through, leading them to the Fold, on the other side of the world. Meanwhile, Rona abandons her people to flee in order to follow the druid’s trail for the chance to travel to the other side of the world. She fights off a pack of skvader, which are like large, horned, seemingly malevolent rabbits. Rona comes upon Gunnr and witnesses the druid slowly become a part of her. She grieves and tries to prevent the process before moving on, through the tunnel and to the Fold, where she reunites with Fortress (whom she had initially assumed to be a literal fortress, like a castle). The two eagerly anticipate new foes on the Halcyon Fold. Note that the current whereabouts of the rest of Fortress’s pack are unknown.

Glaive

So I’ll deviate here and use a skin lore, since it’s one of the only things we have to go on, along with a fair dose of speculation.

So, long ago, the Grangor people were a proud nomadic race of hunters and warriors, renowned for slaying some of the most fearsome and legendary monsters in the world. Most prominent of these warriors was one named Glaive, who soon became the greatest of his tribe despite his blindness. When this Glaive finally died, a baby Grangor kit was born, also blind, who grew up to become an equal, if not greater, warrior. At birth the shamans foretold the blindness to be a great sign, and named the kit after its predecessor, in the hopes that a new Glaive would help protect and strengthen the tribe in the absence of the old one. This cycle would continue for centuries, with a new blind warrior to rise from the ashes of the last and bring honor to the name Glaive. However, we do know the blindness to be very, very rare, and hugely uncommon for the Grangor people.

However, as the puny human race advanced and multiplied, spreading across the continent, the proud Grangors were finally forced to bow down before their new, strange magic and machines. The majority of the Grangors came to settle in the harsh Kall Peaks, a frozen mountain range in between Gythia and Mont Lille. The last of the great Glaives, a fearsome warrior with armor of pure ice, had no great beasts left to conquer, all of them hunted to extinction or drove deep into the caves and shallows of the earth by humans. Using a most ancient of shamanistic rites, this Glaive contacted three of his past ancestors for wisdom and guidance as to how he could bring honor to his name. The Glaives of the past tell him that only one such place exists to acquire such honor - the Halcyon Fold, where only the strongest survive to claim the power of the well there. They instruct him to sail there to prove his worth.

It is unknown whether that Glaive is the current one or not, although the current Glaive and the one who contacted his ancestors possess different coats, and the latter is much larger, making it unlikely. What most likely happened is that Glaive attempted to sail to Halcyon, but perished on the journey or in battle on the Fold. Thus a new blind kit was born, and this Glaive we know a bit more about. He is a mercenary, widely regarded as the best in the business. None know why a creature so attuned to the northern peaks as a Grangor would ever come down, but none question the blind old tomcat’s motives. Rumours of his blindness abound, but are kept quiet in part due to Glaive’s fearsome physique and terrifying weapon - a jet-rocket-fueled axe strapped to a chain, deadly both up close and from afar.

Somehow, this Glaive makes his way to the Undersprawl, a large slum burrough, most likely in search of or on a job. There he encounters the retired carnie performer Ringo, an ace shot who worked in a traveling circus. Ringo insults Glaive, calling him beast from across the room of an unnamed bar, and so Glaive pulls him closer, injuring his leg(s) in the process. Glaive challenges the carnie to a game of cards. The stakes? Ringo’s arm. Ringo takes this to mean one of his guns, but Glaive means the word in a much more literal sense. After defeating Ringo, Glaive saws off his left arm, and leaves for the Fold. Where, how, and whether Glaive keeps the arm is unknown, as are his current motives for staying on Halcyon.

See Ringo for more.

Joule

Joule is a charismatic orphan who lived on the streets of the Undersprawl. She acquires blueprints for a top-secret, military-grade mecha-suit named ‘Prototype 8002’, from ‘an army guy’. She takes the blueprints, and a map of the nearby Churnguard Industries compound Prototype 8002 is stored, to the other street orphans, and the ragtag group of children concoct a plan to infiltrate the facility and steal the mech-suit, using smoke grenades, an anchor, a wire-cutter, and various other assorted mundane equipment. The group cuts through the fence and enters the compound through the air ducts, but one is captured. They split up - some go to the security control room, Joule and a girl named Bell take out a guard and takes his key card, while the boys create a distraction with stink bombs. Guards intercept them all and capture most, but Joule unleashes a powerful, stinky gas to deter them and escapes in the chaos. She and Bell enter the hangar and steal the Prototype, and escape with one of the other boys, Chatter, by blasting a hole in the wall with the mech’s powerful laser weaponry.

The extent of the Prototype’s power is known more through actual gameplay than lore descriptions. It has a powerful laserbeam attached to its front, activtated by the eponymous Big Red Button. The mech sports state-of-the-art frontal and side plating, making it optimal for fully frontal assaults, however, this leaves its backside much weaker. Its build is like that of a human, with two legs and arms that can move as such, and an open cockpit for the driver. One of the arms wields an energy sword capable not only of slashing and cutting in the traditional sense but also to emit short-range electric blasts. The mech is also able to make great leaps with the thruster in its legs; flight capabilites (if they exist) remain to be seen.

Note the Joule’s age remains unclear. Her in-game model and voice suggest a young woman of perhaps high school or college age, however, her appearance in the lore and its art imply someone much, much, younger, maybe middle school. However, in the Killa-Joule 9000 lores, she attends an academy and is identified as stealing the mech ‘a few years back’ meaning that the Joule on Halcyon we know today is most likely several years older than the Joule that stole the Prototype. This is further corroborated to when Joule says she has tested her mech-suit’s overdrives ‘since she was a kid.’ Knowing Joule, if a period of time existed between her stealing Prototpype 8002 and using it to fight on Halcyon, she probably got into a whole bunch more adventures between those two points!

Kestrel

Kestrel, a high-ranking Stormguard and the Queen’s Bow, learned from an early age that not everything in life is as it seems. Her earliest memory is of the painful shock she recieved after she touched a building corrupted by magic. She lived with her mother and father in a settlement outside of Mont Lille (presumably in the area known as Eventide), and her real name is classified. This implies that no Stormguard bears her true name, although it is more likely that only those of common birth, such as Kestrel, shed it, as Catherine, a close friend of the royal sisters Julia and Louisa, appears to have kept hers. Her pointed ears, akin to Julia and Celeste’s, have not yet been explained, and elves have not yet been confirmed to exist canonically, implying that pointed ears are a Mont Lille/Eventide thing (Catherine lacking said ears further corroborates that she is not a native).

Kestrel was tested at an early age to determine her mental aptitude. She passed with flying colors on all her tests but one, in which the child must choose under which color box a piece of candy is located. Young Kestrel successfully passed the first few trials by guessing the majority color, but when the candy appeared under a minority color, she began to doubt herself. When the Stormguard instructor set an equal amount of both-colored boxes, Kestrel refused to choose and had her palms struck. Despire this, she is shipped off to train as a Stormguard the next day, never to see her mother or father again.

She likes sharks and sashimi.

See Alpha, Ardan, Catherine, for more.


#3
Koshka

A tribe of Grangors slaughtered a party of humans drilling into the mountainside (most likely the Kalls), but left the children unharmed to learn about humans by raising their young. Koshka was one of these children, raised by a single Grangor mother. The Grangor lamented at her physical weakness but admired her exuberance and enthusiasm, and had large metal claws fashioned for her to help her hunt. Pretty soon, Koshka grew into a beautiful, but no less deadly, predator, able to leap distances of up to eight meters. She soon grew curious of the outside world and left her adoptive mother, finding herself in all manner of conflicts of which either side meant little to her.

The circumstances surrounding Koshka’s birth and upbringing have left her in a troubling state of psychosis. Her contact with reality is soft at best. Koshka has no regards for life, human or otherwise - not because she is inherently malicious in nature, but because, like a kitten (albeit one with huge metal claws), everything is play to her. She could cut a dozen men to ribbons and not bat an eye, because, to her, she just finished playing with twelve new toys and is now in need of some new ones. Nothing is real, and yet everything is. Koshka does not stop playing until you are dead or she is, and even then would not realize either outcome! This makes her perhaps one of the most dangerous individuals in the world. Her motivations for traveling to and remaining on Halcyon are unclear, although it is most likely she simply seeks engaging, er, playmates.

Koshka is known to have interacted with other heroes. She is a close friend of Ozo’s, and SAW once fought with her on a job (she’s the reason his shirtsleeves are ripped). When Koshka finds a scout trap, she also happens to run into Petal, Krul, and Adagio, before accidentally detonating the trap and destroying her new toy.

Krul

Krul is an unholy abomination of a man, long past the point of natural death, sustained only by the foul necromantic magic of his sword, Hellrazor. Those that meet him and live to tell the tale do so before they crumple up like leaves and die of fright. For none truly survive an encounter with the Tortured Undead - especially not those who stand in the way of what he wants: freedom from his eternal curse.

The only things capable of such a tremendous feat of magic is a well of power, and Krul has spent centuries searching for them, only to find dried husks where there was once magic. It is through this quest Krul comes across the lone Stormguard Daisy, who was charged with protecting a remote well on a far-away island. Krul snaps her neck and moves on to the well, only to find it dead. (It is here revealed that the power behind the wells not powered by Gudmund and Gymir is related to crystals. This either means that all other wells are manmade, or that they are lesser wells formed naturally by large crystal reservoirs, which means that there is probably one in Skye’s kingdom as well). Krul is described as having a limp in his left leg, and he also does not require breath to survive.

TheGreatClockwyrm's theory

Krul takes a boat (Nordic in design) and sails for the Fold, the last well that he knows of (does this mean he’s done battle with Fortress’s pack? Hmmm…). Krul reminisces and recollects on the journey. Some of the things he remembers include fire, eating, a heartbeat, holding a woman, and learning warrior skills from his father. Krul also mentions ‘songs I’ve heard sung belowdecks’, which may mean he had worked as a sailor (or, more likely, conqueror) in the past. Krul’s aesthetic, especially that of his beard and helm, suggest a Viking/Norse inspiration, and in the world of Vainglory the ‘Nordic’ people appear to come from a place called Deinland, as referenced in Skaarf’s lore. Deinland was the place periodically ravaged by the Skaarfungandr, and now exists as a scattered collection of Third World villages.

Krul mentions that he has carried his curse since the time of your (the reader’s) grandfathers’ grandfathers, a long time indeed, depending on how many grandfathers he’s talking about. This means that at some point of his existence Krul has probably interacted with both the Skaarfungandr and Deinlandic people in the past (since he was most likely one in the first place), and once was a great warrior and conqueror, as I suspect Deinland was once a mighty seafaring empire before it was first ravaged by the Skaarfungandr. However, not much is known about the north other than that it has one great well of power, and the Great Oak is there too. HOWEVER (more speculation), this leads to the question as to why the Great Oak, Gunnr, is close to Gudmund and not to Gymir. Perhaps Gudmund is the more powerful of the two, or the more malicious, and needs extra protecting, or perhaps there are two Great Oaks, one in the north and one on the Halcyon Fold, each watching over one brother but sharing the consciousness of Gunnr. Anyways, we know Krul reached the Fold but it is unclear as to whether he reached the well and/or if it was able to help him.

Regardless, it is currently unclear as to how and why Krul got Hellrazor through his chest. The most appealing (which, of course, means my own) theory is that the sword is of Adagio’s design. The flames of Hellrazor and Adagio’s magic are very similar, very similar. Seeing that Adagio’s flame has both the capacity to burn and heal, this is perhaps the reason as to why Hellrazor keeps Krul alive (he’s virtually immortable and indestructable, otherwise he would have committed suicide long ago), whilst also causing him unbearable daily pain. However, some solid speculation that I would like to put out there is that the sword was made by Adagio (or another Elder Dragon), Krul has met and done battle with the Skaarfungandr and Fortress’s pack, and that he was once a mighty Deinlandic conqueror, before whatever happened to create the monster he is today.

Lance

So, in the word of Vainglory, there is this giant titanback named Archelon, like literally massive, who circumvents the world. So big, in fact, an entire civilization has been built on this thing’s shell. Archelon has lived for a thousand years and is expected to live for another (the age can be determined by observing the scutes, or individual plates, of the shell, which covers its back and sides). Their amicable but no less formidable leader is Lance, whose dream is to become a Gythian knight and protect the great city, upholding the tenets of justice, courage, mercy, decorum, honesty, honor, loyalty and character. When he was but a young man on Archelon, a Gythian knight paid for passage around the world, as he was dying and in his last year of life. The knight taught Lance how to wield a shield and lance, and also about the rich cultural history of Gythia. When the knight passed on, he left his armor and weaponry behind for Lance, in the hopes that the young man would grow to be a knight as well. Ever since Lance’s dream has been to enter the gates of Gythia and be accepted as a full knight, however, he has lacked a way to gain entry. Lance is also fluent in Gythian, however, whether he learned the language from the knight or through personal study is unclear, and also collects a variety of Gythian artifacts.

Lance and his people, the Archelions, live on the back of Archelon in an egalitarian society where possessions do not exist and spouses and children are shared. Lance freely practices polygamy, although he neither claims nor expects anything from his wives, and insists that the Archelions belong to their children, not the other way around. The people live in harmony with both Archelon himself and a colony of semi-aquatic trolls. The Archelions protect the trolls eggs and in return the trolls protect Archelon’s soft underbelly from sea predators. The trolls also regularly participate in friendly jousting matches with and against the Archelions. The Arhcelions are agriculatural, growing crops such as asparagus, beans, and zucchini. They get their milk and cheese from goats, although they appear to be completely pescatarian and do not consume their livestock, only the fish, urchins, and mollusks that they can fish from the sea or tide pools on Archelon’s great shell.

A mysterious stranger, calling himself Samuel, books passage aboard Archelon. Lance welcomes him, teaching him the ways of his people, although Samuel soon proves to be an irritable and pessimistic youth who wants nothing to do with them, only quick passage to Gythia. Lance sees Samuel as a chance to fulfill his dream of becoming a knight. After presenting him to Archelon, Lance promises to protect the Gythian youth, thus earning his knighthood. As Archelon is much too large to fit in the Bladed Bay, Lance takes Samuel in by barge, finally gaining justification to enter the city. Samuel percieves Lance’s fervor as nothing but delusions of grandeur, but grudgingly accepts the knight’s help.

See Lyra, Samuel, and Reim for more.
For the rest (unsummarized) canon, see here

Lyra, Samuel, and Reim

Alright, these next three are a doozy, so just bear with me.

So, Gythia lacks a well of power and reservoirs of crystal. The once-mighty empire is bleeding from multiple cracks at this point, and most glaring of which an army of technologists camped outside the newly-created hole in the great Gythian Wall. One one side, the powerful aristocracy of a privileged Mageborn Guild, and the dying order of knights sworn to protect them. On the other, the provincial populace, armed to the teeth and frothing at the mouth to sweep Gythia into the new age - one of metal and machinery instead of magic and might. (The civil war happened over twenty years from present day, by the way.)

To help bridge the two parties directly after the civil war, the provinces are given autonomy, and Archmage Lora, the leader of the mageborn elite, tasks a lowborn battlemage named Lyra with traveling east to the Kall Peaks, where a large reservoir of crystal has been discovered. Lyra had previously been with a mageborn scholar named Titus, and had applied for marriage to him. However, the Guild denies her application on the grounds that only mageborn should marry mageborn, to increase the prospects of mageborn children. Mageborn mageborn mageborn. This makes me wonder if a mageborn can only be born of two mageborn parents, however, Vox and Celeste and considered mageborn despite having only one mageborn parent (Julia), although that may be simply because of their royal birth. This probably means that both of Lyra’s parents were not mageborn. So, this leads to the conlcusion that mageborn can only come from two mageborn parents or of one with royal birth? However, I fail to see the difference between a lowborn mage like Lyra and a mageborn one like Lora or Titus aside from titles and bureaucracy, however, it has been said that mageborn are typically more powerful (total lie Lyra OP kappa). Lyra’s a pretty boss bitch in her own right, but whatever. Regardless, Titus is arranged to marry Lora instead, much to Lyra’s chagrin. She suggests that the two elope and run away to the Taizen Gate (which I am inclined now to believe is a city of some kind granting passage through the Kall Peaks from Gythain land on the west and Mont Lille land in the east), but Titus refuses to allow her to throw away rising through the ranks of the Guild despite her humble birth. The two share a tearful goodbye.

Note that Lyra’s antlers and long ears remain unexplained. The former could possibly be just a headdress, however, her art reveals that they do not appear to come from her headdress and instead sprout up from her hair just above her ears. Speaking of ears, the only people that we know to have long ears are native residents of Mont Lille or the surrounding Eventide provinces, or children of them, such as Julia, Celeste, and Kestrel (also presumably Louisa and Vox). This may mean that Lyra is not necessarily ‘lowborn’ but instead a foreigner born in Mont Lille, who emigrated to Gythia when she was young. However, the only other person we know to have antlers is the druid, a northern bloke. So this leaves Lyra’s ethnicity and origin to be quite a mystery. On the other hand, Ambrosius, her spellbook, appears to be a semi-sentient being that can understand her commands, and the majority of her magic appears to consist of maniuplating his pages, which can be removed, reattached, enlarged, and otherwise manipulated at will. Ambrosius has a singular large eye that rolls up upon casting a spell, and also blinks as any other normal eye would. She keeps him within her cloak.

Lyra is sent away to explore the possibility of creating a modernized Gythian settlement around the crystal reservoir, arriving via ship to the barebones of the port city of Trostan, only to find a wet, cold wasteland. Lyra calls for her semi-sentient spellbook, Ambrosius, and uses his/her magic to erect massive barriers of warmth and light to keep out the sleet and cold. In doing so, she melts the nearby iceberg infused with Halcyon power, which creates twin rivers, one on each side of Trostan, and reveals a well of power. She serves as the governor of Trostan for six years, brokering a peace between the Gythain colonists and the Grangors, and crystal trade prospers. A Trostanian language, combining the Grangor and Gythian languages, is established. Lyra befriends her inital Grangor guide, and he remains with her throughout the majority of the arc, although his name is never revealed.

Lyra awaits the arrival of her replacement, who is promised to be a fellow mage. However, a ship full of soldiers arrives, and Lyra begrudgingly moves to hand Trostan’s governorship off to them. However, the captain corrects her, telling her that a mage will take her place - a little boy, four years old, mageborn…and the sole son of Lora and Titus. Lyra is instructed to remain as regent governor until the boy, named Samuel, comes of age when he turns eighteen, a long sixteen years away. Thinking herself the butt of some cruel political joke, Lyra agrees spitefully.

Nonetheless, sixteen years soon come to pass. During this time, Samuel befriends the local Grangor tribe(s), growing so close with them that he even participates in one of their coming of age trials by slaying a mammoth seal and feasting on it. Samuel learns magecraft from Lyra and passes nine of the ten trials necessary in becoming a fully-fledged member of the Mage Guild (The white wand he has above, which is red in the below picture, is called Malice). However, in his studies, he learns that the tenth trial has a history of being lethal, and one mageborn prospect died whilst undergoing it. The young man’s father, a half-crazed hermit named Reim, lives high up in the Kall Peaks. Lyra’s Grangor friend takes Samuel up the mountains to meet Reim, however, he turns Samuel away twice, before finally allowing him into his tent to avoid the cold. Reim expresses his mistrust towards the Grangors (it is later implied that he kills and eats them) and calls Samuel a bred dog, referring to his mageborn birth, before kicking him out again - but also instructing him to return the next day. Reim teaches Samuel about the Netherworld, an alternate dimension that reflects the souls and auras of the real one, although it is a dangerous nightmare realm filled with phantasms and ghosts. Reim appears to have control of a powerful ice spirit of the Valkyrie, and can summon her at will from the Netherworld. Reim also possesses great elemental power over snow and ice, however, as to whether this power stems from the Valkyrie or an innate gift remains to be seen. On one of their journeys to the Netherworld, Samuel takes a creature known as a sleep-spider, which eats dreams and then spins webs in the shape of them. He hangs it over his bed. Samuel refers to Reim as ‘Magister’.

Lyra confronts Samuel one day in his room, chastising him for spending time with Reim and crossing into the Netherworld. She delivers a hologram message to him from his mother, and warns him that its contents may not be something that he would want to hear. Samuel acts disrespectfully towards her and appears nonplussed at seeing his mother for the first time in sixteen years, although the teenage bravado probably didn’t fool Lyra, who has obviously grown to care for Samuel. Archmage Lora’s message tersely congratulates Samuel on completing the first nine trials and reveals that she has been in contact with Lyra these last sixteen years. Lora instructs Samuel to return to Gythia to partake in his final trial to become a full member of the Mage Guild and replace Lyra as head of Trostan. However, in the second part of the message, she also instructs him to expand the crystal trade - by relocating the Grangor tribes to the frontier for maximum mining efficiency. Samuel scoffs at the notion, saying that the Grangor would rather die than move from their ancestral home in Kall. Samuel accuses his mother of wanting them all dead, but all Lyra has to say is that he must do his duty as a Gythian. Samuel flies into a rage, releasing a nova of dark magic, which puts Lyra asleep.

When she awakens, Samuel is gone, and the sleep-spider above his bed spins a web of Trostan burning in flame.

Samuel, of course, has hitched a ride on Archelon to Gythia to complete his final mage trial (and confront his mother). Meanwhile, Trostan is indeed burning (heavily implied to be Samuel’s doing). Reim comes down from his mountain to investigate, running into a group of Grangor, who are throwing Gythian gold into the ruins to grant the dead passage into the next life, as well as beginning to recite Trostan’s story for oral history. Reim confronts them and asks where Samuel is. The Grangor reply that only his mother knows, which is a saying of theirs that means none do. Reim turns away in disgust, searching through the ruins of the settlement to find Samuel. He uses his ice magic to quench most of the flame, before running into Lyra, who is crying by one of the riverbanks with her Grangor friend. She tells him Samuel is gone. Everything is.

The two search for Samuel amidst the ruins of Trostan for days, and the Grangors help. Reim finally convinces Lyra to move on, and tells her that she does not have to return to Gythia if she does not want to, but Lyra is adamant to continue searching for Samuel. Reim uses his ice magic to seal the well of power, and Lyra removes the barriers (which are revealed to have actually been enlarged, blessed pages from Ambrosius). Trostan is soon buried beneath twenty years of snow, hail, and sleet, twenty years of Lyra’s life and work going down with it.

Lyra and Reim travel to Gythia, reuniting with Samuel, Lora, and Lance. They take titanbeak carriages into the Mage District, to the central theater of the Mage Tower. Lora and Samuel enter, with Lyra and Reim having to stop Lance from following.

Lora prepares Samuel for the tenth trial, but he taunts her, calling himself an embarassment to her bloodline for ‘burning down Gythia’s hopes’ (Trostan). Before she can respond, Samuel is attacked - by a shadow clone of himself wielding the fabled wand Verdict. Samuel and his clone trade magical blasts, but Samuel soon realizes he cannot beat himself - but also that his shadow clone cannot improve or learn. He opens a rift into the Netherworld and unleashes it on the clone, destroying it beneath the sheer force of the spell. Samuel admonishes his mother, calling her weak for not having the guts to convict him of his crimes, instead using the tenth trial’s nigh impossibility to kill him. He accuses her of murdering Reim’s son because he asked too many questions. Lora summons a new shadow clone, this time a four-year-old Samuel, but he ignores it. A skull-like phantasm emerges from the Netherworld portal, and he directs it at the mageborn council inspecting the trial. It puts them all to sleep save Lora, whom it attacks. The green force-field preventing Lance from entering the chamber falls, and Lyra creates a portal for him to enter through.

Samuel catches his mother (who had fallen from her elevated platform), and steals Verdict from her, before asking where Celeste, apparently another Gythian ‘iron in the fire’, is. Lora, terrified now of both Samuel and the spectre, tells him she is gathering allies on the Halcyon Fold. Samuel sneers and aims his wands at her, but Lance enters the chamber, positioning himself (and his bigass shield) between Samuel and Lora. He advises Samuel to reconsider his actions. Samuel smiles and calls Lance greater than Gythia ever was, before escaping through Lyra’s two-way portal. On the other side, Reim has frozen both Lyra and Ambrosius, in order to help Samuel escape. The Magister tells his student to run.

See Lance for more.
For the rest (unsummarized) canon, see here

Ozo

Ozo is a hybrid carnie performer, renowned for his ‘showoffin’ performances for carnie children. The rules of a showoffin are simple - everything you say is true so long as it’s not boring. A few carnie kids corner a newcomer and make him do a showoffin vs Ozo, whom they refer to as boss. Ozo handily beats the kid, then tells him to go home to his mother, and also reveals that he doesn’t have one.

Ozo wields a large circular ring about as tall and as he is, in the shape of an ourobouros - that is, a wingless, legless dragon devouring itself by the tail. Ozo is shown to have great control of his ring, and uses it both for battle and locomotion. Ozo is known to be close friends with Koshka (in the above picture, the two look much younger, which may mean that they have been friends since childhood!), and the two love the Red Lantern Festival… They go racing in a closed Undersprawl tunnel (Koshka claims Ozo using his ring is cheating) and give festival gifts to some minions. The two play pretend (Koshka gives a quite moving performance as Celeste), and then sit together under a kumquat tree, each trying to out-eat the other before Ozo wins/ Koshka does a magic trick by pulling some candy out of Ozo’s ear, much to his amazement. They eat the candy together and watch the lanterns for the rest of the night. Other than that, not much is known about Ozo. He seems to be on the Fold because Koshka is, and for the sheer fun of it.

Petal

Petal is a Meekos, a species of diminutive, rodent-like sentients that live in forest villages, guarded by large ents. She is usually accompanied by three dim-witted bramblethorn minions (affectionately dubbed ‘munions’ thanks to their onion-like aesthetic). Petal is adept in using magic that manipulates sunlight, and can use it in directed beams or blasts to blind and burn her foes. Whether or not all Meekos are capable of doing this remains unclear. She rides an animated flower-like creature, named ‘Murgle’, that moves about on a trio of tentacle-like vines, as Meekos are diminutive in stature and have stubby legs, and probably move slowly. Petal’s munions appear to stand about as high as the knees or waist, depending on how big they’ve grown. Petal grows them from bramblethorn seeds, using her sun magic, and can detonate them at will, leaving behind seeds that she can regrow back into her munions. They do not appear to feel pain from this and also maintain all previous memories and personality before they were detonated. Said personality consists of being as irritating and rude to the ents as possible.

Petal lived in an enclosed forest sanctuary populated by other Meekos but guarded by large, powerful ents. The Meekos are shown to maintain gardens, one of which are filled with dangerous and deadly flora that sting, prick, poison, and otherwise irritate. Petal likes to spend time in this garden to regale her munions with tales of the day. The munions beg her to take them abroad, and when she tries to free them from their seeds, she accidentally detonates them for the first time. Filled with a sense of empowerment from her new abilities, Petal sets out with her munions to test them out on any who dare harm nature. Specifically, those tearing down the Fold’s jungle in seach of the Well’s forbidden power.

See Flicker for more.

Ringo

Ringo used to be a famous carnie performer who was a sharpshooter in a traveling circus. From what I can gather, carnies are a lot like gypsies, although their ethnicity, or even species, can be varied; however, the word ‘townie’ has also been used, which implies the two may live in different areas (e.g. ‘townies’ are the regular folk who live in provincial towns and villages, whilst carnies are the traveling gypsies who roam from place to place). The word carnie, or carny, is an American word for someone who works in a traveling show, also referring to the lingo that they use, so fun etymology lesson there. Anyways, Ringo was a very, very talented marksman, so prolific in his skill he could shoot perfect holes though a coin thrown up in the air - blindfolded, with his back turned. Children would flock to his shows so that he could shoot through their allowance. Ringo had a best friend, the carnie strongman Pavel (who is implied to be SAW). The two had been friends since age three, and Pavel would often say Ringo is ‘lousy at life, amazing at shooting’. The two have since separated for unknown reasons, or in the very least Ringo no longer finds work in that traveling circus anymore.

It is implied that Ringo’s loss of his left arm to Glaive is what ruined his career and turned him into the booze-swilling gambling fiend we know him to be today. However, it is entirely possible that something else, not related to violent loss of limbs, sunk his prospects and caused him to end up in a seedy Undersprawl bar with the ferocious Grangor in the first place. Much remains currently uknown as to what caused Ringo’s fall from grace, although the limb loss is the most prevalent theory. There is room for further speculation, including the identity of Pavel and Ringo’s relationship with him, but for now we will simply have to wait and see what more is revealed about him.

See Glaive for more.

SAW

SAW is an ex-militia mercenary-for-hire eager to gun down any who stand in his way for a shot at the Well’s power. Armed with a submachine gun ripped straight from a military-grade dreadnought warship, the identity of the man behind the mask remains uknown - although the deeds attributed to his name are almost as unbelievable as they are infamous.

SAW was once a simple man. An soldier working for a platoon in the south, he soon grew tired of a military life and traveled north, filling out the necessary paperwork to fully and utterly retire for good. We know that he had worn his mask during this time. Things quickly change when a monstrous leviathan, a tentacled horror suspiciously referred to as a ‘churn beast’, attacks the port town in which he had acquired his retirment papers. The monster rips up the town, causing tidal waves and earthquakes. SAW begrudgingly accepts that only he can stop the creature, rushing over to the wreckage of an airship and taking one of its automatic deck guns. Climbing up on the wing of the crashed airship, he pumps a nice dinner of lead and metal into the leaviathan’s gullet. SAW perpares to go down with the monster, smiling crookedly and with a gun in his hand, until antoehr airship lowers a rope to save him. He makes off in the airship with his new gun.

SAW is known to have taken a job for an unnamed treehouse town (possibly Meekos) to rid them of a ‘monster’ - Koshka. SAW tracks her down, but she jumps him and rips the sleeves form his shirt, before scratching herself on the metal of his gun (affectionately dubbed ‘Gracie’) and running away. SAW retreats and coats the area in gunfire, leaving a smoking waste. As a result of the carnage, the mayor refuses to pay SAW his bounty (500 gold or the equivalent weight of crystal), which prompts SAW to make a scene by putting him a choke hold. The fate of the mayor - and SAW’s promised loot - is unknown. SAW is also known to have a strict physical training regimen, the details of which can be viewed here.

SAW has been implied to be Pavel, Ringo’s old strongman buddy from his carnival days. There are several details that can corroborate this. One, one of SAW’s in-game quotes is ‘Bullets for breakfast’, and one of Pavel’s tricks was to catch a bullet in his teeth from Ringo. Secondly, SAW is very heavily built and follows a strict physical regimen that involves a lot of heavy lifting. One of Pavel’s trademark skills was lifting multiple women at a time a la Gaston. If this is true, then that means that somehow SAW/Pavel and Ringo split up, SAW/Pavel joined the army, and SAW/Pavel began to wear a mask. Perhaps the two friends encountered a draft but only Pavel agreed to join, leading to a falling out between the two. Perhaps an accident caused Pavel to lose his memory and assume the identity of SAW. However, Ringo has been known to have said that he does not know Pavel’s current whereabouts, which makes both of those possibilities unlikely. It is perhaps more plausible that Ringo’s run-in with Glaive is what occurred first, causing him to run away in shame. Pavel, heartbroken, no longer has the strength to carry on without his buddy and joins up with the local militia. There are countless situations that could have occurred to lead to their split-up, and that’s assuming that SAW is Pavel in the first place!


#4
Skaarf

Skaarf, or more accurately, Skaarfungandr the Vehement, the legendary Ender of Worlds, Ruler of Skies, the Reaper, the Last, the Herald of Eternal Night, the Indomitable, His Dreaded Majesty and Eater of All, is a great and terrible blight on the history of Vainglory, a dark creature of flame and ash that returns every thousand years to lay waste to all that Man has wrought (each period in which the dragon returns is known as a ‘reign’ of Skaarfungandr, of which there have been at least five that we know of). So legendary is the Skaarfungandr that he has his own Canticle, which is basically a long hymn or chant, usually of biblical proportions and contexts. Although the great dragon appears across numerous cultures, each’s depiction of him remains eerily similar - indicating that there may be more fact than fable about the great and terrible creature. While dragons have been known to be extinct for millenia (hue), Skaarfungandr is the only known documented one, and the only one that rears his magnificently scarlet head throughout history. An archaeologist by the name of Martim Walker is known to have studied the Skaarfungandr, and the document(s) he has uncovered on the creature can be seen here.

The last time Skaarfungandr is known to have appeard dates back approximately one thousand years, which many of the populace fears means that the great dragon will soon be upon us again. Despite those in powers’ attempts to dissuade the rumours, they persist, and not without good reason. Numerous acccounts of property damage and homicide from arson-related incidents have been reported, causing public unrest and belief that the dragon has indeed returned, quietly biding its time to unleash a full-scale apocalypse on the world. Officer Sarth (who lives in a city of tall, utilitarian spires) is assigned to the collection of cases, ultimately coming to one suspect, a man who recently lost his job to one of the establishments burned down. Sarth accuses the man of burning it down in revenge for losing his job, but he denies his involvement, claiming he saw a fire-breathing dragon at the scene of the crime. Sarth and the resident sketch artist scoff, claiming that they have witnesses and that dragons aren’t real. The man claims that the dragon was the great and terrible Skaarfungandr, only…smaller. Before they can say another word, the Safety Spire in which they are holding the suspect shakes and begins to burn down, a barrel-chested, scaly dragon rising from the ashes. Sarth is presumed alive, however, the baby Skaarfungandr’s motivations on Halcyon (if they exists within its sapient mind) are unclear, as are why he has returned small and adorable. Perhaps all past Skaarfungandrs started out as babies but were just never documented, or perhaps this means Skaarf is the last incarnation. While I hold plenty of theories as to how and why the Skaarfungandr exists, we currently know very little on the subject. Hoping for more about everyone’s favorite little beastie.

Skye

Skye is the daughter of a high-ranking general who fights in the wars over ownership of a vast collection of crystal mines. The politics surrounding the war and is purpose is complex, however, they appear to be controlled by a host of powerful families who inermarry to cement alliances and garner allies in the fight. Skye, a brilliant pilot, wants nothing more than to fight on the frontlines in a battle-mech, but her mother Umma and her father Appa instead wish her to be married off to a powerful family. As Appa is the preeminent general and military leader of the area, a family that chooses Skye to be its daughter-in-law would sent a powerful message, although as Skye’s family does not appear to control any crystal mines of their own, doing so would also practically ensure war against other family houses. However, the general boasts an impressive arsenal of war mechs that many families would need for their frontlines. Umma prepares Skye for an event known as the Choosing, where prospective debutantes are selected to wed heirs via some sort of high-stakes political bingo.

(NOTE: Skye’s mech is a lot more lightweight and mobile than Joule’s. It focuses a lot more on strafing and quick, repeated gunfire than the raw power and energy weaponry that Joule’s employs. It has limited flight capabilites and can lay down a serious beating with its guns. It also has access to powerful rocket and explosive weaponry systems.)

Once at the Choosing (a large pagoda with a central table upon which the named tiles are placed), Skye soon finds herself stifled by the atmosphere and wanders off, taking with her a pair of pastries. However, Baron Silver, the dashingly charismatic heir to the Silver House, the original family to unearth crystal, sneaks up on her. Baron steals one of her pastries (not cool), and strikes up a cconversation with her, complimenting her looks and generally being a schmoozy frat boy. The conversation soon turns to the crystals and the war, and Baron wishes it all gone, yearning to be free of mechs and tanks and minions - and of the Choosing, so that he may make his choice for love instead of politics. Baron promises Skye that she will be his general, pressing her tile into her hand and whispering that sometimes, a man must choose for himself.

However, Baron’s speech is revealed to have been a ruse. The Silver family chooses another debutante from a more politically sound family, and Skye realizes Baron’s choice of words (and his removal of her tile from the table) outlined his intent from the beginning. Distraught, she flees from the Choosing and heads back home, taking out one of the battle-mechs for a joyride. And by joyride, I mean she blows up the crystal mines, putting an end to both the war and the Silver family fortune. Skye flees the scene, presumably to the Fold, eager both to try out her mech’s power on its other residents and to investigate the Well’s power.

Taka

Taka was one the young ward of a kindly sensei he referred to as shishou, a Japanese honorific. However, events come to pass that Taka is abducted and brainwashed by the abusive House Kamuha, who wipe him of memories and remorse to use as the perfect assassin, however, he suffers from intene migraines and flashes of dejá vü as a result of the process. A mysterious clawed figure wearing a red mask (ALL HAIL SOSA SURU erm eheh cough sorry) sends him on a mission to assassinate an old man, who is later revealed to be his shishou. Heavily distraught, Taka breaks free of the masked figure’s control and flees, presumably to the Fold. Taka appears to be a red panda/tanooki-human hybrid in the same vein as Ozo is with monkeys, although not as extreme of a mix.

Whether or not the House Kamuha is a ‘House’ in the sense that the mining families from Skye’s lore are (e.g., were they planning to use Taka to wipe out the competition and take control of the crystal? Who knows?) is unclear, although is is definitely very possible, as both arcs are heavily inspired by Asian culture, implying the two heroes originate from an area of VG’s world that draws from said Asian culture. The word House is not to be taken literally here (while as hilarious as it sounds, it’s not just a bunch of masked assassin dudes living in a townhome together). House usually refers to a large and powerful entity, sometimes family, sometimes not. While the organization is most assuredly a villainous one, their motives, strength, and location are unknown, although I doubt that this is the last we will hear of them.


#5

Heroes not covered

  • Batiste
  • Baron
  • Churnwalker
  • Flicker
  • Grace
  • Grumpjaw
  • Gwen
  • Idris
  • Lorelai
  • Reza
  • Varya