Shroud of the Avatar – Cult of Spears Final Post and Why I am done with SotA
*Note* – Comments have been turned off per my request due to the fact that I did not like the direction they were going and wanted to avoid an escalated drama, harsh words, accusations, etc. Please be understanding of MY Choice to do this. Thank you!
Good Evening Friends! This is not a post I truly wanted to make. In fact, I have continued to struggle for months to avoid making it for a number of reasons. I have spent alot of time taking with some current and past SotA community members about this for quite some time as well. I am basically leaving Shroud of the Avatar as I simply see no more point in my continuing to support Shroud of the Avatar, as I have since Kickstarter. With the events of the past few weeks, I have today contacted Starr Long and Chris Spears and cancelled my interview stream that was planned for Post R32 launch. I am I am also cancelling all future full version posts of the Cult of Spears lore (lore about Chris Spear’s in game character named “Atos”) here on Ultima Codex. I am going to post a chapter timeline however below for those who are curious to see where it was going to go.
Why? I have spent the past 18 days going through every possible conclusion based on current information as to where I see the game will be in one year. It has lead me to no longer be able to support Portalarium or Shroud of the Avatar as I have done since March 8th, 2013. I find it difficult to believe the game will survive long term due to a multitude of reasons. I believe bad decisions were made, and are being made, that unfortunately will result in this game not living up to even a portion of the possibility of what it could be. This includes items in regards to project management, community management, gameplay, etc. The toxicity of some in the community also continues to go unchecked, and in fact some behavior has continued to be encouraged due to both action and inaction. I sometimes think the dev team cares so much about the community, that it is affecting the game development and their art. As I told Chris, I hope and pray the game does become what so many of us hoped it would be, and if it does I will be back… but until then, I need to leave because I currently have no hope with the game.
While I am not selling my account, I put the money I did into this game’s development as an investment into what I thought could be something truly special. It was a donation of which I expected no return if things went bad. The money I have given has been good enough payment for the journey I have taken with the dev team and some in the community. I have met and made new friends. I have gotten to be part of the College of Arms and design graphics for that. I got to write fiction aka lore instead of what I typically write, which is non-fiction. If God-willing the game turns around, awesome… I will still have my main pledge and I will be able to use it. I will continue to do the weekly “Update of the Avatar posts on the Ultima Codex”. I cannot leave a job I have willingly and eagerly taken undone, and I said I would take care of doing the weekly SotA posts. The community and my friends here at Ultima Codex, deserve that; as well as they expect that from me, because it is the standard I have always held myself to.
Cult of Spears Timeline – Very Brief Overview of what Each Chapter was to have.
Chapter 5 – Dippy leaves for the kingdom to the north, ruled by Lady Cassandra’s Son. Meeting of Aarun and his history. We learn of Aarun and the Undeadimifyer artifact. We learn about the destruction of Aarun’s village by Lady Cassandra’s troops while trying to destroy the undead. Lady Cassandra’s death during this battle is revealed. We also learn about Lady Cassandra being the atypical queen in all she did, including her relationship with Gladys.
Chapter 6 – Aarun and Dippy see a Hot Air Balloon while traveling through the plains to arrive in the capitol. Meeting with King Letholus and the questions about the Hot Air Balloon they saw while traveling. The learning of the mountain village of Brightwell. Dippy learns that Gladys passed away and is grief stricken. Aarun and Dippy meet Breena (a follower of The Mistress). History of Breena meeting the Mistress. Dippy is certain the Mistress is someone who could be a valuable friend because of shared goals.
Chapter 7 – The three travel to Brightwell. Overview of Brightwell being underground as well as a few above ground homes and shops to give the illusion of normalcy. Aarun and Dippy meet the Mistress and Andres. Dippy is fascinated by the stories of Nimbus from Andres. The Mistress preys on Dippy’s urge to travel and learn all he can and informs him about the pink crystals that grow like rhubarb, and how they can be used when crushed to create a fire that burns hotter and stronger then any mundane fire. Dippy sees similarities between the hot air balloon as the paper lanterns he did for Evergrove each year. Realizes that those strange things he sometimes said growing up were tied to subconscious memories from the other world. Dippy and Aarun prepare to leave for Nimbus.
Chapter 8 – Description of Nimbus, no story about Dippy until next chapter. The Capitol city is described in details. Giant Shardfall crystal in the center of the city. Palace to the north of the crystal. The Ivory Library is described in details as there are many ritual setups that exist in one wing of the library for experimentation. The royal family and aristocrats, who are supposedly the only magic users, live in the capitol city. The poor, the laborers, and tradesmen live in the outskirts of the city, outside the city wall and are not allowed inside without a special pass. The view of magic is different in Nimbus vs the Overworld. Those who can use magic without need of crystal and ritual are considered to be of a higher class of citizen and blessed by the Divius. Mundane and Magic Crystals alike are used in industry. Ritual magic is used to supplement industry, including blacksmithing, agriculture, milling, etc. There is much hatred between the two classes of citizens. The Exiles are those who live in the crystal wastelands to the east of the capitol. The Royal Family and Aristocrats claim they dont exist. They are members of the lower class that were born with the ability to magic without rituals and crystals, but were not born into aristocratic families, and thus are banished. In the West lay a forest with two villages. Both contain being who look like humans but have wings and horns. They are known as The Fallen Ones. The two villages have been in odds about the history of their people as their ancestors were supposedly from a city in Novia that was wiped out around the time of the Fall. They keep to themselves except to trade the magic crystals that they are experts at harvesting. The Magic Crystals of each other grow in areas that are naturally saturated with larger amounts of magic. Due to the Shardfall, all of Nimbus is that way.
Chapter 9 – Aarun and Dippy arrive in Nimbus. They are fascinated by the land and people. They notice that the majority of individuals on Nimbus have lobe-less ears. Dippy gets lost in the outskirts and saves a boy from being arrested. He meets the boy’s family who are blacksmiths (father and his 2 sons). Description of Blacksmithing with Magic Augmentation to the process. Forging of a Dagger for Dippy for saving his son from being arrested and probably sentenced to death. Aarun talks to a guard and mentions Andres. We learn that Andres’ wife was an aristocrat. The Guard recommends a meeting with the King and Queen, but demands Aarun find Dippy as he should not be wandering around on his own. Meeting with King and Queen. Permission is given to learn at the library for one week as thanks to Dippy for what a Guard saw as Dippy stopping treason against the Royal Family. Dippy finds it interesting how his actions are seen so differently by both sides. Dippy comes to discover the bigotry in regards to magic during his studies.
Chapter 10 – Dippy and Aarun meet the Fallen as they gather materials to try to grow their magic ability. We learn about the class system more within Nimbus and how the bigotry is perpetuated by the royal family. With the rise of more and more low-class citizens being born with natural magic skill, the problem is not going away. Aarun and Dippy struggle to decide on if they should intervene. The Exiles commit a terrorist act destroying one of the storehouses of food the aristocrats use. Aarun and Dippy learn of the Obsidians and the twisting of human form to create new beings. They also learn that while those on Nimbus found that to be a perversion of magic, a similar thing is being done which is the transplanting of souls into other bodies. This is seen as ok, however, because the soul isnt twisted and changed along with the body. The persons’ original being is left intact. Dippy witnesses the soul of a summoned being, being transplanted into a sword. The royal family discovers Dippy is an Outlander/Avatar.
Chapter 11 – Dippy and Aarun are invited to the home of an aristocrat. They learn about the Exile Sympathizers. Dippy and Aarun use the blue sapphire from the Mistress to inform her and Andres about the situation in Nimbus. Andres and the Golems make their way to Nimbus. Civil War occurs with both the Exiles and their sympathizers asking for Dippy’s help along with the Royal Family requesting his help. Dippy makes his choice and Balance is found upon Nimbus. The Royal Family are overthrown and banished to the Overworld, as they brought more Chaos to Nimbus from their bigotry. Andres is welcomed back and is requested by many aristocrats to lead a representative government for the people.
Chapter 12 – Dippy leaves for Brightwell. Dippy and Mistress discuss their mutual goals. Dippy questions Mistress as to why she only surrounds herself with women. Mistress tells part of her tale of her arrival in the world and that she didnt want to return to the world she left. She talks about the betrayal she felt when the Titans refused to help her and so she left for other lands. She talks about traveling the world and discovering other women who were like her and her sisters from her old world. Abused, Beaten, Abandoned, Neglected, etc. She had promised she would never allow another like her to ever feel unloved or without a home. The ladies who serve the mistress are not slaves, but her “sisters” as she calls them, for while they are of this world, that does not make them any better or worse than she is as an outlander. Mistress goes on to explain her hatred of the Titans and especially the Avatars for what they did to this world. Dippy shares information about the Divius and the Mistress takes him underground and shows him the 12 altars of the Divius that exist there from before the fall.
Chapter 13 – Story and Description of each of the 12 Divius. 4 attributes of Order, 4 Attributes of Balance, 4 Attributes of Chaos. We learn of the never-ending conflict that has occurred since almost the beginning of time between them.
Chapter 14 – Dippy creates a ritual in the underground area of the altars to try and communicate with any of the 4 Divius of Balance. It goes wrong. A Divius of Chaos gets involved, Dippy ends up in a coma. The Mistress uses her own magic to awaken Dippy, but the damage to his psyche is already permanent. Mistress is pleased because Dippy was too concerned with Harmony and Balance without the loss of Free Will. The second attempt to speak with a Divius of Balance is successful. Because of this, Dippy learns that Avatars/Outlanders will return to the world soon and will be arriving in Novia. He vows to go to Novia and find artifacts and others who will work with him, the Mistress, and those from Nimbus to bring Balance to the world.
Chapter 15 – Dippy arrives in Novia. Aarun returns to Brightwell and goes back to his village to rebuild so it could be a trading post between Nimbus and Segura. Dippy discovers that the Obsidians meant well but used chaos to bring order which was why they sorcerers of the Obsidian could not reach the success of the mages of Nimbus. Dippy discovers a Tomb of an Avatar. Much time is spent studying the stories on the scrolls. Dippy comes to the conclusion that the return of the Avatars if left alone will only bring the world to its final destruction. He vows to convert the Avatars from “these virtues that obviously didn’t work” to see the truth of how Order, Chaos, and Balance are the only paths that exist. Dippy changes his name to “Atos”, for those who bring only Order or Chaos will learn to fear him.