The Lands of Lore: Guardians of Destiny Guide to the Lands is a manual that was published by Westwood Studios, and went along inside the box of the CD-ROM release of Lands of Lore: Guardians of Destiny.
The one hundred and three page document details various aspects of Guardians of Destiny, including but not limited to backstory, combat, spells, overall gameplay and system requirements.
Table of ContentsEdit
In the Begining (A Tour of the Area)Edit
The Journey BeginsEdit
- Skill Levels - 48
- Magic Use - 52
- Controlling Your Curse - 56
- Item Based Spells - 57
- Protection - 60
- Weapons USe - 62
Lore of the LandsEdit
There can be little doubt, even among the skeptics, that ancient Gods once visited our earthly plane. Records are rare or non-existent (after all, this was a very long time ago), but the persistence and urgency of the various legends keeps the memories alive. The creation mythos of virtually every known civilization credits immortal beings in some form for laying the foundation upon which our mortal existence is based.
So, we can be fairly certain that something special did happen, but just who were these Gods, and why are they no longer here? The answer are to be found in the story of the Guardians of Destiny.
Most theologians propose that the great immortals either came or fabricated our world as a means for them to create the one experience unavailable to omnipotent beings: Not Being In Charge.
The life of an Ancient God is, unfortunately horribly boring. There are no surprises for an Ancient God, no mysteries. Everything that happens is caused by them.
Our mortal world is then perhaps like a vacation spa for the gods, created in order that these all-powerful creatures could find a seam that allowed them to leave their powers behind and experience the feeling of Not Being In Charge (This phenomena is also known as being At Effect, in counterpoint to being At Cause.) Being At Effect is certainly a delirious good time to an individual who has had a slog through the monotony of endless eons of being At Cause. Pleasure itself is, as an emotion, impossible for an All Powerful Being to experience. And therefore, our world, a dude ranch for the Ancients, was created.
Although divine intention was required for the creation of our universe, at some point in time it became common knowledge that such an arrangement, such a mixing of mortal and immortal, could only function if left alone by the Immortals. Effect cannot work if constantly interrupted by Cause.
And so, by agreement among the Immortals, our world, the world of Effect, was not to be interfered with by the all powerful Gods. Effects could be watched as it slithered over the surface of our new planet. Effect could even be experienced by those individuals who chose to leave their immortality behind and join with the mortals, but no God was allowed to reach into the fishbowl and bring his powers to bear on the mortal plane.
After additional untold eons, the novelty began to wear thin, and certain individuals among the Gods, indifferent to the delicate balance between mortal and immortal life, began to think of making the toy even more exciting.
Proscriptions, prohibitions, and the heavy weight of moral concerns notwithstanding, the unthinkable did occur: One particularly evil Ancient God was the first to break the sacred rule of non-interference, His name was Belial.
Belial, in an effort to add sport to his jaded existence, looked down and selected the Dracoid race as those mortals who would be favored with his attentions. A sickly sweet smile on his face as he strolled among the awestruck Dracoids, the horned Ancient dispensed fabulous new weapons and bits of Ancient magic as if they were lumps of candy thrown to mobs of adoring children.
Heretofore, the mortals had been content to settle what national disputes there were with the equipment at hand: bows and clubs were fashioned from the wood that could be harvested from the forests, spearpoints and swords were forged from the metals dug from the earth, and even the mundane natural magics were summoned for the efforts of defense.
But now the new weapons and awesomely powerful Ancient Magics fanned the dormant flames of militarism among the peaceful Dracoid, and they became a people possessed. War ruled their thoughts and conquests filled their dreams.
Ancients Gods are not in the habit of criticizing each other, and so Belial's first ventures with the Dracoid drew little notice among the other Immortals. But as the favored Dracoid race began to lay waste to the other nearby civilizations, certain Gods politely requested that Belial desist, and stop his interference among the mortals.
As so often happens, courtesy has a strange reversing effect on malevolent souls, and the more politely his fellow Gods requested that he mend his ways, the more savagely Belial equipped and encouraged the now warlike Dracoids.
Even the official censure form the revered Council of the Ancients drew nothing more then a contemptuous chuckle from Belial, and his visits and gifts to the Dracoids did nothing but increase.
The closest neighbors to the Dracoid were the Hulines, and they bore the brunt of the fierce storm that swept out of the Dracoid lands. Valiant though their warriors were, the mundane Huline weapons were no match for the awful and wondrous new magics the Dracoids threw at them. Wave after wave of courageous Huline troops fell in a futile attempt to protect their homeland. But their struggles were to no avail, and soon what had been a glorious countryside smoldered like the last embers of a dying campfire.
The pathos of the Huline cause did arouse sympathy among the Ancients, but the credo of non-interference still held firm, and no immortal could stoop to lend a hand.
Several generations passed, and still the heavy weight of the Dracoids and their powerful Ancient Magic weapons ground the remnants of the once-proud Huline race into the bloody mud of the battlefields.
Finally, when the Hulines were reduced to a meager few individuals, and the possibility of total extinction became a probability, another of the Ancient Gods could stand by no longer. Anu, known later to his mortal acquaintances as the Draracle, determined to save the Huline race from annihilation. Ancient magics now found their way to the Huline camps as well, and the fighting lost its lopsided character.
As right and just as this action may have been, it was still a violation of the immortal code of non-interference, and the Draracle paid a heavy price for his assistance to the Huline, for now his hands were stained as well, and in the eyes of the Ancient law, both Belial and the Draracle were equally guilty of the crime of interference.
As equal as their crimes were in theory, the Ancients did understand the good intentions of the Draracle. But Belial's crimes could not be rationalized, and his actions embarrassed the entire community of the Ancients Indignant that their official censure had been so rudely ignored, the Council of Ancients met again, and determined to take whatever steps necessary to end Belial's mortal interference forever.
No Ancient had ever taken the life of another, but nonetheless a resolution was passed which sentenced Belial to death.
To wrap up their solution in a tidy package, the Draracle was chosen to carry out the execution. After all, his hands were already dirty, and what more efficient means could be found? The Council of Ancients would use one criminal to erase another, and leave the rest of their community unsullied.
Knowing that his execution was imminent and unavoidable, Belial developed a plan that would allow him to be resurrected after his death. In his chambers beneath the magnificent City of the Ancients he created a huge magical Mother Beast.
This Mother Beast was intended as an enormous antennae which would accumulate the radiations from the magic of the Ancients. When sufficient Ancient Magic was acquired, the Mother Beast would focus this power towards the creation of a new god, and Belial would be reborn.
The problem in Belial's plan became apparent when, after his execution, the Immortals decided to leave the City of Ancients, and the mortal plane, entirely.
Without Ancients nearby, radiations of Ancient magic became extremely scarce. When no sufficient amount of Ancient magic was available, the Mother Beast lapsed into a state of dormancy, and waited. all of the Ancients departed, and the City of the Ancients sank beneath the waves.
One Ancient,, however, did stay behind. The Draracle, convinced that someone should watch over the moral plane to insure that Belial would be unable to fulfill his resurrection plans, took it upon himself to be that watcher.
Determined that our world would enjoy its own fate, unmolested by the further machinations of an Evil God, the Draracle appointed himself the Guardian of our destiny.
The hibernation of the Mother Beast and the vigilance of the Draracle continued uneventfully for several thousand mortal years. The Draracle left the Southern Continent and took up residence near the human kingdom of Gladstone, and spend his time dispensing cryptic agricultural advice and weather predictions to the local farmers. Over the years all mortal knowledge of the Ancients was forgotten.
Spurned as a lover during her youth by the then Prince Richard of Gladstone, Margarithe Fiston nursed a natural grudge against the royal house. she eventually married a prominent local landowner, and bore him a son named Luther.
After years of peace, the war between the evil Dark Army and the opposing White Army of Gladstone flared anew. One of the first victims was Luther's father, slain by a raiding party as he accompanied the wagons to market along Gladstone's main road.
Margarithe was enraged. Blaming the lax security of Gladstone for the loss of her husband, she combined this hate with her previous grudge to form a psychosis that deprived her of all normal reason. Turning enthusiastically to the dark side, she took the name Scotia, and buried herself in studies of the dark and magical arts.
Poor Luther, then but halfway through his teens, kicked casually at the weeds for a year or so, but then left the farm and the unpleasantness of Gladstone to seek his fortune elsewhere. His mother Scotia proved a good student, and soon her magical skills and unswerving hatred for Gladstone earned her the respect of all the Dark Army. She reigned supreme as the most powerful sorceress of her time. still, her success brought her new talents to bring about the death of King Richard.
Richard was no fool however, and access to his person was guarded jealously, lest a traitors Dark Army agent should poison his food or engineer some such treachery. Scotia's attempts to get close enough to do him hard were all in vain.
Acting on rumors mentioned in several of her magic tomes, Scotia began hunting for the legendary Ancient Magic artifact known as the Nether Mask. Surely the powerful Shape changing properties reputedly bestowed upon the possessor would finally allow her the disguise she required to kill Richard.
Unbeknownst to Scotia, the Nether Mask was one of the last major sources of Ancient Magic left in the world. When she finally unearthed the mask from the deep mud where it had lain safely for centuries, the Ancient Magic radiation emanating from its activation awakened the long dormant Mother Beast.
Just of the verge of complete success, Scotia saw her evil plans fail, and she was herself slain by one of the heroes of Gladstone. In her dying moments she attempted to send her most valuable possession to her son Luther. But the transmission became garbled in the ether, and Luther received a mangled version of the Shape changing magic.
Struggling back to Gladstone to seek a cure for his affliction, Luther was captured by soldiers of thew White Army, and thrown into the Gladstone dungeon. Confused, and in great pain, Luther lay stunned in his cell, imprisoned for the crimes of his mother.
As we come to present times, the Mother Beast is still eager to accumulate enough Ancient Magic to resurrect Belial. Awakened from her slumber, she has begun to spawn her lesser children as a prelude to her final maternity. Grotesque spider-like creatures drop from her womb and tunnel to the surface to search for any remaining bits of Ancient magic.
Aided by a timely change into a powerful beast, Luther has escaped the dungeon, and made his way to the Draracle, hopeful that this strange oracle can guide him towards a cure. Still conscious of his pledge of non-interference in mortal affairs, the Draracle has directed Luther to the Southern Continent.
The Gladstone mystic Dawn, alarmed by reports of the strange new creatures plaguing the Southern Continent, has come to the Draracle as well. Unsatisfied by his cryptic mumblings, she too has traveled south to forestall this danger before it threatens Gladstone directly.
Both Good and Evil need the ancient magic of Luther's curse. Belial's mignons are anxious to kill Luther and acquire the Ancient Magic within his curse in order that Belial can complete his resurrection. Dawn and her allies are equally anxious to acquire the Ancient Magic in order that they may use it to prevent Belial's resurrection.
While Luther will be the key to this puzzle, he is yet to learn his part. He may never get the chance.
This book was taken from the Lands of Lore series of video games or from websites created and owned by Westwood Studios and/or Virgin Interactive Entertainment, the copyright of which is held by Electronic Arts Inc. (EA). All trademarks and registered trademarks present in the image are proprietary to Electronic Arts Inc. (EA), the inclusion of which implies no affiliation with the Lands of Lore Wiki. The use of such images is believed to fall under the fair use doctrine of copyright law.