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A Shadow In The North

by Richard Evans

Artwork © Gary Ward and Edward Crosby
In the beginning the world was shrouded in shadow, ruled by chaos and destruction. The Gods saw the wretchedness of the earth and took pity upon it, forming the World-Flames and banishing the darkness with their light. But the memory of men faded with the passing of the aeons; one ruler, King Ragnar of Innshelm, sought to take with the magic of his World-Flame what he could not do with the sword.

But he did not understand the forces he intended to wield. His meddling destroyed the northern World-Flame, and the north began to descend into anarchy. Innshelm's former enemies cared not, struggling instead over the wreckage of its Empire. Only one, the city-state of Talras, sent aid. YOU are the one they sent, a warrior trained in the sword, the bow and (most importantly) the art of magic. It is your mission to travel through the dangers of Innshelm and relight the World-Flame.

You are a Sorcerer, one of the finest to have ever been trained at the Mages' College in Talras. As a result you are able to perform a wide range of spells; each spell has different effects and different strengths and weaknesses that come with it. Although these are often easily deduced from the spell's name, it may be worth becoming acquainted with them below:

INFERNO - creates two fireballs, one in each hand. Once the fire leaves your hands it may spread and damage you in the process (requires 4 STAMINA).

FORCE - summons a powerful wind which you may direct at your enemies. This is perhaps your most powerful spell, but its usefulness against groups of enemies means that it may also be dangerous to allies (requires 5 STAMINA).

ENERGY - enables you to shoot a bolt of lightning at an opponent. This bolt will be conducted through water in a similar way to electricity (requires 4 STAMINA).

SHIELD - creates a magical shield around your arm, protecting you from your opponents' attacks (requires 2 STAMINA).

UNLOCK - will unlock any non-enchanted devices (requires 1 STAMINA).

REVEAL - allows you to perceive the mental states of those around you, it is analogous to telepathy (requires 2 STAMINA).

LEVITATE - will make small objects move or hover for long periods of time and large objects for much shorter periods of time (requires 2 STAMINA).

LEXICON - translates languages and writing which you cannot understand (requires 1 STAMINA).

SECLUSION - forms an invisible barrier (which may be small or large) through which sounds and smells cannot penetrate (requires 2 STAMINA).

DISSONANCE - causes its subject(s) to become dismayed and depressed, it works best on one target and diminishes in its effects based on how many you do target (requires 3 STAMINA).

CAPTIVATE - creates an illusion based on what it is that the subject wants to appear, for example casting it on a merchant may produce the illusion of gold coins. Be aware that this illusion is strictly mental, and will not be apparent to those who are not under the influence of the spell (requires 3 STAMINA).

IMPASSION - inflames the subject's violent and energetic tendencies, for example it may be used to start a fight. It is more effective the smaller the number of creatures targeted, and the less intelligent those creatures are (requires 3 STAMINA).

Additional Information
You start armed with a sword, but you may acquire other weapons later. As usual, you can choose the one that you will use in battle by selecting in the list of possessions and clicking on USE.
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