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About a century ago, the collapse of Nerath, the last empire of the world, ushered in a dark age that continues to this day, the peace and prosperity of the past seemingly lost forever. However, even those fabled days weren’t without a few blemishes. One of these was Emperor Magroth the First, a tyrant and a conqueror; cruel, ambitious, filled with delusions of grandeur and dreams of destiny, and more than a bit insane. During Magroth’s reign, rumors of necromancy and demon worship were rampant, but the truth was far worse. Thanks to deals he made, pacts he agreed to, and rituals he performed, death was not the end Emperor Magroth. Instead, a piece of him was drawn into the Shadowfell where he became the ruler of a domain of dead. From this vantage, the old king prepared for his return - and the new empire he would forge from the ruins of old.
Now Magroth has made a new deal with Orcus, the Demon Prince of Undeath, that frees him from his eternal prison for a year and a day. In that time, Magroth must re-establish his ancient kingdom while also accomplishing a series of terrible tasks for Orcus. To this end, Magroth’s plans intersect with two other threats that are rising in the world. Where these threats meet, the world shudders. And it falls to our heroes to keep the fragile lights of civilization burning for another day.
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By Janelle Reppert on 02-24-16
This book has gotten poor reviews because it has been judged against wrong criteria. This book introduces the Nentir Vale sandbox setting of D&D 4e. It's many locations are there for the reader to later get the game products about them. It is written as a way of showing how to To answer just how a game spell would work in a narrative fiction setting it mentions prepared spells, and fighter stances, cleric and paladin powers coming through their symbols and so on. Dialogue which seems cheesy is clearly meant to mentally see it more how a comic book does it. - like how Spidy and Doc Oc trade insults and explain plans as they fight. I found the brief reintroduction of characters in a scene each chapter a GOOD thing since there are so many characters and factions. It reads like a well written explanation of a tabletop groups campaign because that is its intention. Read it in that light and you may enjoy it as I did.
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