Echoes is the first zone, and part one of Echoes (Story Volume). It must be completed on Normal difficulty to unlock the next zone, The Wizard in the Tower, or to play Hard difficulty, which - upon completion - unlocks Nightmare difficulty.
"The Kasan family makes its return to West Kruna."
Optional Boss Encounters
- Skip all battles possible. Extra battles just waste Energy. If you cannot progress because you need more cards and XP, join Brawls.
- Kill the first battle.
- Walk past the next few to go up the stairs. Kill the one on the path.
- Go to center of town, head right, kill one to leave town.
- Enter cave, kill first battle, walk past second, kill boss.
Sidequest: Cowed by AbsurdityEdit
First obtain the Boots of Water Walking from Thieving Imp and Goblin Peddler in The Wizard in the Tower and Dragons Clash, respectively. Then, walk onto the water in the bottom right corner of the map to reach the small island. You can now fight the Cows and their leader, Bovine Monarch. Be warned, the Cows have Magma Elemental and Bovine Monarch has Soul-Render.
- Common Craft: Beastman's Eyeball (Potion of Eagle Eye)
- Special Craft: Cow Hide (Cow Helm) Obtained from Cowed by Absurdity.
The shout from the crow's nest greets you as you come up onto the deck. You move to the prow, the brine-scented breeze playing across your face, and gaze out across the undulating mass of water. At first you see nothing, and you feel an absurd sense of disappointment, as though you're a child who's been denied a yearned-for treat. Then the dark and distant shape appears on the horizon, and your heart thuds in your breast.
There it is. West Kruna.
"Home?" You speak without turning round, eyes fixed ahead as if you're afraid that the vision might slip away forever once you relinquish it. "I've never even set foot there."
"It's where the Kasan family belongs," she replies.
An idle contradiction rises to your lips. But it evaporates before it can be spoken. She's right. You feel the kingdom singing to you like a siren, drawing you ever onwards, desperate to feel the tread of your bloodline once more.
West Kruna... Home.
Your ancestor was a hero, the greatest champion of a valorous age.
A quarter of a millenium ago, monstrous armies waged war on West Kruna. Kobolds, beastmen, and other creatures far more fearsome swept across the countryside - pillaging and slaughtering. Above their hordes flew the terrible masters at whose behest they had begun their savage assault on the land: the dragons.
But the people of the kingdom did not cower, in spite of the horrors that descended upon them. It is said that the gravest dangers evoke the greatest courage, and so it was then. Countless men and women rose to defend their homes and kin. Peasants and paupers, soldiers and noblemen - all took up arms and stood side by side in the ranks. The tales of bravery and glory which emerged from that grim time are without number. But one story, one hero, eclipsed them all.
When kobolds and beastmen attacked the little town of Burden's Rest, a farmhand seized the nearest weapons which came to his grasp and slew them by the dozen. And that was just the beginning of his legend. Accompanied by a group of stalwart companions, a loyal army, and a drake named Solus who served as both friend and mount, he battled foes across the kingdom. Wherever the danger was greatest, there he was, plunging into the thick of battle, vanguishing every adversary fate threw into his path. Soon everyone knew of the Dragon-Rider of Burden's Rest, savior of West Kruna, the bane of its draconic enemies.
In honor of his deeds, King Jamus took the unprecedented step of raising a commoner into the upper echelons of the aristocracy. The Dragon-Rider became the patriarch of a new noble family, one placed on equal footing with the ancient houses and the bloodlines that had dominated the kingdom's social and political landscape for centuries. The hero chose 'Kasan' as his surname, and so the Kasan house was created - its birth cheered on by a grateful populace.
For over a century the Kasan family occupied a privileged place in West Krunan life. Long after the hero's death, his descendants proved themselves worthy of the heroic blood in their veins. In battle they were fearless and no bandit or monster was safe once the Kasans had been called on for aid. At other times they served as diplomats, securing peace treaties or trading agreements with other land, and offering wise counsel to the royal household. They had their enemies among the other noble houses. Some despised them for their common ancestry, or else were jealous of their close friendship with the monarch. But this mattered little while they had the support of the crown and commoners alike.
It was when the like of King Jamus came to an end that the fortunes of the Kasans changed.
A series of tragedies robbed the royal dynasty's final ruler of his children, and when he died the throne passed into the hands of the Selutha family. The Seluthas had long been rivals of the Kasans, and within months of his ascension to the throne the new monarch accused the Kasan family of engaging in a treasonous plot against him.
Testimonies against the Kasans came swiftly enough, for the favor of a king is valuable indeed. And so the family was forced to flee West Kruna, choosing exile over execution.
The Kasans' supporters among the other noble houses, and those of the peasantry who had borne witness to their honor and virtue, were outraged. But many West Krunans were swayed by the words of bards, tale-bearers and other agents of the Seluthas. Thus rival accounts sprang into being, songs and stories which either scorned the king and lamented the fate of the Kasans, or else praised the monarch and condemned the Dragon-Rider's kin for descending into treachery and depravity.
King Vorticar IV of East Kruna had long respected the Kasans, whose members had often visited his court in the service of their own kingdom. And he had no love for the Seluthas. So the king offered them lands in his realm - a place where they could settle and begin anew.
Your family soon rose to prominence in East Kruna as they had in the west. Once again their virtues and talents in matters of both war and peace came to the fore, and they proved their worth at every turn. Thus you were born into a noble house with a deserved reputation for honor and courage, for martial skill and military acumen.
As though the two were placed on opposite sides of the same set of scales, the fate of the Selutha family seemed to descend as that of the Kasans rose. Word of Kasan success and heroism had long since spread to West Kruna, and some began to grumble that the royal dynasty had cast out the best of the kingdom's nobility and chivalry. Human lifetimes are short, events beyond memory viewed only through the murky glass of history and legend. Whatever might in truth have occurred so many decades prior, many now upheld the tales that depicted your family as victims - virtuous people, the descendants of a greater hero, preyed upon by a malevolent and petty dynasty.
Then came King Crenus, the flame that ignited the kindling.
"We'll be there soon," Tessa says, the words muffled echoes amidst your reverie. "You should go below and make sure the others are ready."
You nod, but your gaze remains fixed on the shore. With the land in sight, growing ever larger, the true enormity of what you intend to do strikes you as if for the first time. But there's no turning back...
Behind you Tessa Tullian sighs. Then she gives a soft laugh.
"I'll do it then."
You hear her footsteps moving away, but barely register her absence.