Outside the comforts of Divinity’s Reach, Queensdale is the farmland humans depend on and the front line against the war with the tamini centaurs. There is also the threat of bandits and aggressive wildlife, but the centaurs have been a constant threat to Krytans. At the height of one such attack, I joined Logan Thackeray (of Destiny’s Edge fame) and the Seraph just outside the Shaemoor Garrison. It earned me the title “Hero of Shaemoor” and gave me the embark on my career as an adventurer. In this journal entry, I’m taking it upon myself to get to know every corner of Queensdale.
Farmers sell their wares at a small market just beyond the city’s gates. It’s common to find fresh watermelon and fish on sale, along with lucky rabbit’s foot trinkets. (I’m told said rabbits all died of “natural causes”). There’s also a tavern with some delicious red bean cakes and and witch’s brew.
With the popularity of Destiny’s Edge, it’s no surprise to find young children pretending to be their favorite members of the heroic group. Unfortunately for this young boy, the death of Snaff excludes him from some serious “adventuring” with his friends. I tried to convince him that the Hero of Shaemoor was far more interesting, but he was completely uninterested.
Shaemoor Cemetery has gravestones going back to 1168 AE and up til the current year. Some of the inscriptions are a bit funny, but the Gravekeeper Dumpy is the strangest part of this quiet patch of land. Always talking to himself, and insisting he sees happy undead in his graveyard.
In a cave, behind the cemetery is a bandit hideout. They’re not a greater threat than the centaurs, but the bandits have a way of keeping to the shadows and catching you off guard. I’ve even heard rumors of their dealings with ministers in Divinity’s Reach and even aiding centaurs.
Speaking of bandits, they constantly sabotage Dalin’s Pumping Station, which supplies water to the fields of Shaemoor. I’ve seen them on several occasions either trying to blow up the pipes or poisoning the water.
Jeb’s wheat field, Diah’s windmill, and the rest of the Shaemoor Fields also have a problem with bandits. Unfortunately no one, including the Seraph have been able to drive them out the Bandithaunt Caverns to the south.
Nearby the fields, Western Divinity Dam is filled with earth elementals and harpies. Occasionally there are reports of a large champion earth elemental arising to stop the workers. There is also an Eastern Divinity Dam, located past the cemetery. The dams themselves hold back water from the Giant’s Basin lakes.
On the western end of the Shaemoor Fields is Eda’s apple orchard. Centaurs took the life of her husband, and large spiders often infest her trees. Her assistants can’t deal with the spiders, so it’s up to kind adventurers to handle the extermination. She always has a freshly baked apple pie on hand for compensation, and that’s more than enough motivation for me.
Taking a look on the western edge of Shaemoor, past the confines of it’s garrison, the Scaver Plateau is filled with centaurs. The Seraphs are constantly keeping the centaurs at bay. And in the mountainous caverns behind the windmill, skritt collect “shinies”. Unfortunately, most of their spoils turn out to be logging tools from the nearby Queen’s Forest lumber mill.
Hunters on the edge of the Queens Forest meet at a lodge where they share stories and are on the look out for a rare giant boar. I had the pleasure of joining Lodgemaster Carthage and other adventures on the hunt for it.
Shire of Beetletun is the most elaborate establishment in Queensdale. Thanks to Minister Caudecus (who resides in a mansion here), Beetletun has extra security. The same minister also owns the carnival in Divinity’s reach, and his workers assemble pieces for it in Beetletun. On the surface, Caudeucs sounds like an outstanding person. But there is a lot of gossip and rumors about his supposed attempts to overthrow Queen Salma, and connections with the bandits.
It’s easy to forget about the underwater environments of Queensdale when everyone and their brother is asking for help on land. In the waters between the Eastern Divinity Dam and Beetletun, I took my time looking at the flora and fauna unique to Kryta. The hard shelled crabs that inhabit this space require special traps to capture. I’m told all the effort is worth it once you try the crab meat with some garlic butter.
Surfacing from the water, I noticed an open pipe filled with ooze creatures. Curiosity set in and I investigated the pipe system, only to find more oozes. I’m not sure what else I expected to see, or why oozes would inhabit a pipe.
Eldvin Monastery specializes in brewing ale. It attracts connoisseurs, and the occasional keg thieving centaurs. Monks here worship Kormir, our goddess of truth.
South, deep in the Taminn Foothills is the Righteous Hoofmoot where centaurs gather. It was difficult to reach the site, but the challenge really tested my skills and I’m better for it.
Walking into a cave by the Righteous Hoofmoot, I found a woman named Kiterin. She’d come here looking for adventure, but the rocky ledges and pillars of the cave were too difficult for her to reach. Taking my time to look around the area, I found a different route and began my exploration of these “Demongrub Pits”.
Along the way, a skritt named Rakkrarrtuk helped point me in the right direction. Eventually I reached a big open area with a waterfall, ooze, and a grand chest that caught my attention. With my mighty brown bear Rose, the ooze were no match. However our reward inside the chest was less grand than I expected.
Greatheart Weald is a small patch of the Heartwoods where oakhearts gather. These walking plants that inhabit many regions of Tyria take on the appearance of their surroundings. For example, the oakhearts specific to this area have burgundy color leaves growing from their extended branches.
Occasionally an oakheart can become corrupted, and unless it’s killed the curse spreads to it’s kin.
South of the weald is a centaur camp that the Seraph are constantly fighting to gain control of. It’s proximity to the Township of Claypool gives the centaurs an easy target.
The Township of Claypool rests on the border to Kessex Hills. It’s history goes back to when Salma and the Shining Blade were fighting for control of Kryta. A river leading to a secret passage way ran through where Claypool is today. The township itself is a major hub of training and metal smithing for the Seraph.
Lastly, I headed to the Godslost Swamp. Many years ago, the Temple of Ages were constructed here. They even allowed adventuring parties a chance to visit the Underworld and Fissure of Woe. The collapse of this holy place caused a rift between this world and the Mists.
Portals to the Underworld release shadow creatures such as shades and aataxes into the swamp. Ghosts from the Mists wander, tormented by these shadow creatures.
What remains of the gods statues are mostly underwater. No one knows why the six gods no longer answer our prayers. The Priory has setup a camp in the swamp to investigate the rift, but none of them had any more information on the gods’ silence. Due to the strange nature of the swamp, necromancers from all over Tyria are also drawn to this spot.
The highlight of my conversations with the Priory were with Historian Garrod. I was able to purchase some petrified ectoplasm off him. From the notes of my ancestor, ectoplasm was a rare and precious substance, only acquired from creatures in the Mists. It has little use for me at the moment, but I plan to keep it in my collection for now.
While chatting up the Priory members, a deep and terrifying roar traveled across the swamp. At the southern edge of the swamp a huge shadow creature, the Shadow Behemoth erupted from a portal. Adventurers all over Queensdale arrived to quell the beast and return the swamp to it’s relative safety. Our efforts for this dangerous task were well rewarded. Needless to say, if the Shadow Behemoth ever rises again I would gladly return to defend the swamp.