(Champion Spotlight) (10.05.2019) New Champions Have Arrived
Foli's origins are shrouded in mystery. Some say he was among the first Elves to have been banished from the Kingdom of Aravia for dabbling in the forbidden Dark Arts. Others - that he was unjustly persecuted by his political rivals and forced into exile. Foli himself certainly cares little for rumours and legends, his focus remains on the present and his role in the war against Siroth. For decades, he worked alone, striking alliances and backroom deals with numerous powerful figures across Teleria. His goal was ever the same - to uproot the servants of darkness wherever they could be found, by whatever means necessary.
His natural talents are enhanced manyfold by the strange armour he wears. Whether created by magical means, or a symbiotic creature eons-old, this living carapace provides exceptional protection and vitality. Crushing blows that would daze and debilitate lesser warriors seem to have little effect, wounds mend as fast as they would beneath a skilled healer's touch, and the armour itself serves as a terrifying extension of Foli's arsenal.
Such an elusive Champion is not easy to recruit, yet if his loyalty is gained few foes will be able to stand in his Company's way.
Skinwalkers, prized for their natural resilience and strength, often become the target of slavers from all across Teleria. The Dark Elves, though often allied with certain tribes, are particularly fond of capturing the creatures they see as little more than beasts and using them for back-breaking labour or bloody gladiator battles for their own twisted amusement. Sometimes, the unfortunate few become the unwilling subjects for magicians seeking to unlock further mysteries of the Dark Arts.
Such was the fate of a minotaur known only as Hakkorhn Smashlord today. Whatever his former life used to be, it was burned to ashes. Everything stripped from him. Horrific experiments conducted by a Dark Elf witch coven infused the poor creature with a fiery rage that could not be quenched. Thus strengthened beyond even his beastly physique, the Smashlord was unleashed upon one of the slave-fighter arenas. The results were far more spectacular than his new masters could imagine, and for years the Hakkorhn reigned as the undisputed champion. But despite the various enchantments and hexes, the minotaur's will still simmered underneath. Slowly, he started regaining his former self until one fateful day where, in the midst of combat, the Smashlord turned on his captors and cut a bloody swathe through the guards with the help of his fellow slaves. Such was the carnage, that the stunned Dark Elves did not give pursuit until reinforcements arrived from a neighboring hold. And by that point, Hakkorhn and the other rebels were long gone.
Though still tortured by dark spells that once bound his will, the Hakkorhn roams the land as an errant warrior in search of a worthy cause to lend his strength to.
There are many demonic creatures in service of Siroth, some born of Teleria and its magical ether, others - in the astral planes far beyond the mortal world. Some of these planes consist of naught but eldritch flames and eternal darkness. From there, the Dark Lord summoned forth some of his most powerful minions. Fire Elementals - the personification of rage and destruction given form and will. And among them, Drexthar Bloodtwin is among the most terrifying.
A being of ancient power, Drexthar's body is little more than an ephemeral spirits created by the ever-burning hellfire. To give him form, Siroth encased the elemental into a suit of might armour and armed him with a vicious blade that feeds on Drexthar's own nature. All those who dare to stand in his way must beware, for not only this servant of Siroth a mighty and experienced warrior that has ended many would-be Champions over thousands of years, but his very being presents a mortal danger as well. Though strikes may yet break through Drexthar's armour, the flames hidden beneath are volatile, hungry, and all too eager to lash out at any creature foolish enough to try extinguishing them.
Yet Drexthar's nature is also his weakness, for fire does not only consume and destroy - it brings light and warmth as well. Heroes with a sufficiently strong will may be able to bind the elemental to it, cutting him off from his dark master and turning the raw destructive potential to serve good.
Captured by the Dark Elves, these two ogryn brothers were meant to be little more than cattle for the arena. Though they have proven to be far more skilled and resilient than their captors imagined. By their combined skill and teamwork, the Cagebreaker and the Towering Titan - as they became known to the audience - not only survived, but managed to gain something of a following. Still, their ultimate fate was decided and the two relentless brothers were to meet their end at the hands of the reigning Champion, Grandhammer. Or so it was planned by the slavemasters.
Grandhammer himself had little desire to keep on shedding blood in the name of slavers that kept him bound and tortured with unspeakable magic. Thus he hatched a plan to escape, one that he managed to share with his would-be opponents the night before the grand performance. Though less than keen on such risk at first and suspecting cowardice, the ogryns were convinced in the end and agreed to follow Grandhammer's lead. When the time came, they staged bloody and ruthless combat against each other, distracting arena guards. At the same time, Grandhammer and other gladiators attacked their tormentors, and soon enough both Cagebreaker and Towering Titan joined their fellow slaves in that uprising.
Once free, they chose to return to their tribe, bearing masterfully crafted gladiator armour and weapons the Dark Elves equipped them with. Such mighty defenders are sure to dissuade further slaver raids against their kin.
Personifying the tactics of many nomadic Barbarian tribes, Alika comes from the ranks of Ambushers - a somewhat basic, but very apt name - are an elite cadre of warriors that specialize in hit-and-run tactics both on horseback and on foot. These usually come from the ranks of tribal nobility, or warriors that have been granted the trust of the chieftain for their deed on the battlefield. Granted with some of the best armour the nomads can create - both sturdy and richly adorned to display status - and state-of-the-art bows, they can make any invasion into a hellish experience.
Alika is a master archer, capable of identifying priority targets at a moment's notice and taking advantage of even the smallest weaknesses her hawk-like eyes spot. The only thing that can match her skill with the bow is her fierce loyalty to her blood kin, Sikara, for whom she will face the direst of foes and survive against all odds.
It is no surprise that the cutthroat society of the Dark Elves produces many skilled warriors and assassins. The latter are especially thought after by anyone in Teleria who needs a problem resolved in a swift and bloody manner. Fortunately for her employers, and unfortunately for her victims, the assassin known as the Eviscerator specializes exactly in that. Her gruesome monicker is well-earned, as a bloody trail of successful "contracts" left behind would attest. Of course, there is more than simple cruelty at play. In this bloody business a fear-inspiring reputation is certainly quite important.
Granted, that reputation is coupled with impressive talent. Eviscerator is as lethal as she is graceful, striking with blinding speed and always seeking to find a weak point in the enemy's defenses. Her dual daggers are coated in poison, making certain that even the smallest scratch has a chance of bleeding her victim. Her agility allows to strike from the shadows, throwing enemy formations into disarray. She knows that it would be foolish to let an enemy recover, and always seeks to strike whenever they attempt to recuperate or gain an advantage.