Dark Souls 2 Lore Discussion/Speculation Thread (spoilers)

#251 Posted by DanTheGamer32 (223 posts) -

@gamingsince81: yeah I've noticed that about the Pursuer boss fight arena too :) pretty cool!

As for the flames on the map, I'm not sure of their lore significance, I thought maybe it was just a clever way of being able to track your progress as I think the flames appear as you beat bosses rather than light bonfires (the first one I noticed after beating The Last Giant) but maybe it links in to the great souls spread across the land? As they only appear after defeating major bosses.

#252 Posted by DanTheGamer32 (223 posts) -

I just wanna know how you go down from the Tower of Flame into No-man's Wharf.

Magic! :P

#253 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@development said:

@militantfreudian: Nito is killed in DS1, but somehow a "new" Nito is created, seemingly from Saint Serreta, and is then recognized by that age's peoples as the "one who gave us the first death," even though we as players know that isn't true.

I'm really curious where you got the info that Saint Serreta is Nito incarnate. I didn't really pay as much attention to the Alva/Serreta/Zullie thread, but this idea that they could be linked to Nito has me interested.

@mezmero said:

The most intriguing thing to me is that it would appear that he is harboring two (or four) living giants from the eyes of Drangleic's monarchy as part of some kind of amnesty. I came to this conclusion since the giants under Black Gulch are holding the key to one of Grandahl's chambers. They're not even all gnarled and hollow like the Last Giant but actual full sized giants. If the giants are willing to coexist in the dark it would explain how Nashandra was born from Dark and yet she knew enough about the giants to seek out Vendrick to invade their land and steal their power. I think at one point the Darkdiver actually mentions "What once was a great void of Darkness became but fragments. But slowly the scattered fragments grew, absorbing all things." (he might only say this during your first times ranking up in the covenant). This seems to be a reference to either the advent of Manus or simply speaking of the origins of the Darklurker itself which has manifested the Dark Chasm around itself as a sort of defensive shell within the Abyss. Grandahl's final dialogue is "We need the Abyss, now more than ever." This is either in anticipation of Nashandra spreading the dark of the Abyss throughout Drangleic after claiming the Throne of Want or something far more sinister. I feel like I'm missing some info here but I'm just spitballin' for now.

Here are a couple points I've raised concerning giants and the Abyss.

Looking at the faces of the giants the word hollow keeps ringing through my head. It makes me wonder how the curse applies to them. I'm also reminded of humanity sprites when I look at the Soul of a Giant items. They look kind of like humanity from DkS with a much thicker border. Very interesting.

I pointed out in an earlier post that the Soul of a Giant item almost looks like it has a lump of humanity in the centre. Considering humanity as a piece of the Abyss, could the souls Vendrick pillaged have literally contaminated the souls in Drangleic, spreading the curse like a plague throughout the land? And could the giants simply be humans who have gone so hollow that they're faces have changed so much to reflect their hollowing?

To weigh in on the Darkdiver, I think the other doors opened by the Forgotten Key might have some clues. We have a room in the Gutter that contains a whole pile of those poison child statues and Havel's Set + Greatshield. The other door is down the hole in Majula containing Great Lightning Spear, the Witchtree catalysts and something else that I can't recall... Major ties to Lordran and Anor Londo here.

#254 Edited by Mezmero (1905 posts) -

@rocketboot: I see what you were getting at with your theories but I'm of the mind that the giants were not former humans but just their own race. They've always seemed analogous to the cyclopes from Greek myth what with the single orifice in their heads. Traditionally they are believed to be among the first living races created by Gaia and seeing that these giants turn into trees after they die I'd say they're a much more primordial earthy race than humans. They're also said to be among the first blacksmiths (see Gogh and Giant Blacksmith) which might fit more in with what I think you posted about Vendrick taking some kind of technology from the giants. I'd presume that it had something to do with the breakthroughs he made with souls and golems.

Within the Giant's memories Drummond says that the giants couldn't bring themselves to forgive the King and fought to the last to take back what he stole. It's likely they were so old and ancient that they can only perceive morality with an extremely narrow view of right and wrong and are programmed to respond only with retribution. The two beneath the Black Gulch may be mutations who gained the knowledge of survival from some unseen third party. What's interesting to me about them is that we see in the memories that they are capable of pyromancy but not sorcery, miracles, or hexes. For all I know it's just a matter of the designers not having enough time to program giants with those abilities but let's humor the idea that they are only capable of pyromancy. Perhaps the Lost Sinner was imprisoned for giving them the gift of pyromancy to seek revenge on Vendrick since the popular theory seems to be that she's the witch of Izalith.

#255 Posted by NVega (1 posts) -

Dark Souls II is a game about cycles. The fire fades, the curse strengthens and the kingdom dies. We find ourselves thrust into the heart of this series of events. Shanalotte, child of the dragons was brought into this world for one reason: To put and end to the curse. However, the dragons failed. Shanalotte was not able to cure the curse, but due to her nature she persevered so. We find her, or at least an illusory incarnation of her, in Majula. Her goal now is to guide undead towards the king in hopes that the throne is reclaimed and the fire is linked. Once this happens souls will flourish anew and the curse will fade once again, marking the beginning of a new cycle in the Age of Fire.

However, where there is light there must be dark. Manus, Father of the Abyss was vanquished by the chosen undead long in the past. But a being this powerful never truly dies. Fragments of Manus coalesced into physical form creating multiple manifestations of the Father. Our primary antagonist, Nashandra, is one such piece. If the cursed one reclaims the throne and links the fire, then the dark will once again fade back into the recesses from whence it came, at least for a time. Nashandra wishes to bring about the Age of Dark, true to her origin.

To fulfill this quest the cursed one must slay the four great ones and collect their souls. The Lordvessel, once containing four of the most powerful souls in existence, is left shattered in the manor basement. The original names of these souls are unutterable, The Dead One, The King, The Witch, The Paledrake. These souls are so powerful that they even distort space and time around them. Over the eons the power radiating from these souls has razed the earth. The kingdom once known as Lordran collapsed and on its hallowed ground was built another, and another. Until finally the lost kingdom of Olaphis fell and gave way to the rise of Drangleic. Each time kindling the fire, and each time it fading and the curse strengthening. Over time the four greatest souls in existence warped the land and formed it as it is, just as they did to the unformed land when the Ancient Ones fell.

#256 Posted by Myrmicus (223 posts) -

It appear that it deosn't make sense at first, but what doesn't make sense to me is the fact that some path to the royal castle would be blocked for everyone, except for some "powerfull souls". I mean, the kingdom was inhabited and people must have been entering and leaving Drangleic Castle pretty often. So the main passage makes sense. The fact that it became blocked after the ruin of the kingdom can be just bad luck... or it was done on purpose by those who wished only strong people to reach the castle. The Shrine itself appear to be a secret place, designed to open only for the worthy. We can't actually read the knowledge it inhabits, but there is three beheded serpent's statue (primeval serpents, anyone ?) and scriptures on the walls. Maybe it was specifically disigned to let enter only the King himself (after all, so far he is the only one who would held the power of the four old souls). Just my two cents on the subject...

Quote from my post on the critique video, where it's said that "it make no sense that a door opened with powerfull souls opens a door that isn't the main path, while the main path is only blocked by a pile of rocks". Then it struck me.

Here's the idea : There are what seems to be dragons on the wall, scriptures, a statue representing three beheded serpents around an altar. Wellager tells us that "King Vendrick vainquished four powerfull beings and, with their souls, created Drangleic." The beheded serpents could very well be a representation of the Primeval Serpents and the Altar could, in fact, be what held the Lordvessel in the first place. King Vendrick slain the four holders of the Lord Souls strengthening his soul, just to open the door of the Shrine of Winter. There, the scriptures on the walls gave him some knowledge about the Soul, about the Dragons and the altar gave him the Lordvessel. And he used that to create Drangleic...

The fact that you need to gather the four old one's souls to enter the Shrine isn't a coincidence, but what could (or not) be one is the blocked path to the castle.After all, if you enter the shrine without the four Old Ones souls and speak to Shanalotte in front of Drangleic Castle, she will say something like "Your soul is still pale and frail. I will not prevent you to go further, but know that your fate shall be tragic". In the end, maybe the reason she tells you to chase the Old Ones isn't because you need them to meet Vendrick (you don't), but because they should empower you enough to become the next Monarch. Maybe she blocked the main path to the castle on purpose to force you to do this or maybe this is just a coincidence.

#257 Posted by development (2350 posts) -

@development said:

@militantfreudian: Nito is killed in DS1, but somehow a "new" Nito is created, seemingly from Saint Serreta, and is then recognized by that age's peoples as the "one who gave us the first death," even though we as players know that isn't true.

I'm really curious where you got the info that Saint Serreta is Nito incarnate. I didn't really pay as much attention to the Alva/Serreta/Zullie thread, but this idea that they could be linked to Nito has me interested.

Oh, I forgot to come back here and answer you. Well, we know Serreta had some kind of sickness, which isn't evidence by itself of course. Someone went into the PC files and found "Alva's resting place" was supposed to be an area within the Gutter, but was removed or omitted evidently. We know, I think from Gilligan, that "they say the grave of a saint lies below," and I realize that's pretty vague, but I don't think any other saint in the game is referred to as just "a saint." ...was going to post more things, but...

Okay, I just searched for it a bit, and it seems I'm very likely wrong, if Shalquoir's correct:

You've seen that gaping hole here?

Well, there's nasty little vermin down there.

Although who you seek is even further below.

And has been down there for a very, very long time.

He's plumb Rotten by now, I'm sure! Hee hee hee…

Of course... I'm assuming Saint Serreta was a woman for some reason... maybe I'm wrong about that.

Oh, hah, and I found something else Shalquoir says (after obtaining the King's ring), as if we needed more confirmation that the dragon was fake:

You'll find a great creature far to the east.

A colossal thing, with the strength to match its size.

Or something playing the part at least.

Open the door, and venture inside, and you'll soon smell even lovelier.

#258 Posted by DanTheGamer32 (223 posts) -

Why are the rats located in the grave of the saint anyway? I'm going to assume that 'saint' is Saint Seretta, who would be the skeleton hanging in the coffin after the Rat King?

#259 Posted by Karkarov (3104 posts) -

Why are the rats located in the grave of the saint anyway? I'm going to assume that 'saint' is Saint Seretta, who would be the skeleton hanging in the coffin after the Rat King?

I guess because they like to gnaw on bones and there are a lot of bones in graveyards? There is no evidence to stay who the saint in the huge coffin is one way or the other, could be anyone. I think everyone should keep in perspective that Alva's quest was to find her and help her mission.... but he died without ever finding her. So maybe she/he is just lost period. There are plenty of Saints out there. Could be Alva's grave actually. *shrug*

#260 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@mezmero: I like your ties to Greek mythology, that's something I'd never have used to make a connection. What if I were to suggest that the giants share some history with humans? Like the Neanderthals, for instance. After all, we're never told where the giants in Dark Souls come from yet there they are alongside the humans, and the ascended humans (Gwyn & friends) are compared/referred to as giants. Perhaps they are a more primal (or primordial) version of humanity. Could the giants at one point, after being driven underground by the might of the dragons, took on a more 'furtive' appearance before finding the first flame and the lord souls? The reasoning for the giants use of pyromancy and no other form of sorcery could be attributed to pyromancy being a more primal magic. I would argue against the Lost Sinner teaching pyromancy to the giants. I got the idea that the sinner is basically what would have happened to the Witch of Izalith had someone stopped and imprisoned her before she was able to manifest her soul into the Bed of Chaos through trying to recreate the first flame.

#261 Edited by Mezmero (1905 posts) -

@rocketboot: I mean they may have some stuff in common with the humans in Dark Souls specifically. It's not clear if humans were the only race affected by the actual Dark Soul and if hollowing would necessarily have the same effect on a different race. You might be on to something about their souls looking like humanity though the connection may be a bit broader than it appears. I think the ascended humans and demons gain their size specifically by consuming large amounts of giants' souls or great souls in general and gaining such strength during years of soul leveling. During the invasion on Drangleic there would have been so many legendary warriors just gorging on this bounty of such powerful souls. Don't giants grant more souls on a kill than almost all the other enemies in DS2 excluding bosses? This feast of a genocide would have given rise to several humans ascending leading to a renaissance of large sized undead warriors such as the Dragonslayer Knight, Throne Watcher/ Defender, Velstadt, and Vendrick himself.

The single orifice in their heads seems to have a single function, to consume souls. No eyes or ears to deceive, no nose to smell, just a soul eater. It seems to also be able to communicate with a soul directly. Figuring that out likely led to Vendrick's breakthroughs with golems. And yeah there's not a lot of evidence to suggest a connection between the Lost Sinner and the giants, I was just putting that out there as raw speculation. I think some people have suggested that Vendrick stole the first flame from the giants and that could explain their aptitude with pyromancy and their ferocity in taking it back.

I'm still trying to figure out how exactly the King made a come back in the war since we see his main defensive force get annihilated in the giants' memories. Considering Vendrick had the 4 great ones' souls he likely spread the wealth between his most trusted allies just to quell the giant invasion. One to a witch who maybe planned to create a flame similar to what Vendrick stole to trade with the giants and appease their wrath. One to a king of iron who forged his armies' weaponry. One to the Duke to create perfect giant killing abominations. And one to the forgotten dead who bear a grudge against the giants who brought them death. Unfortunately such power corrupts absolutely leading to the ruin of Drangleic under Nashandra's rule.

#262 Edited by Brackstone (66 posts) -

Here's a dumb idea I've been thinking about that doesn't totally work, but makes more sense to me than the other theories, so excuse me while I ramble. The Lost Sinner is Aldia.

The biggest problem with this idea is the fact that the items clearly refer to the lost sinner as female. A couple things could explain this away. First, since it seems the sinner is controlled in some way by what looks like a chaos bug, it could be that the lost sinner is a she in personality/character alone, since she is the Witch of Izalith, while the host is male in terms of sex. Since it seems like "Navlaan", also tied to Aldia's experiments, was possessed in some way and the new personality took over, it could have been a result of Aldia's experiments. Since we know his work into giants souls and dragons didn't work out, he could very well have turned to drastic measures, including pyromancy to relight the fire. The pyromancy Forbidden Sun originates from Aldia's experiments after all, and could imply that Aldia's research was looking in that direction. The Lost Sinner imprisoned herself, so it could be similar to Navlaan's situation, where Aldia realized how dangerous trying to manipulate the first flame could be (Chaos Demons), and so locked himself away in a place where he, or the bug/soul that was controlling him, could not keep trying.

Other things I'd point out is that in the lead up to the Lost Sinner's chamber/cell, we encounter the same mutants that are found in Aldia's Keep. Their description in the official guide (I don't own it myself, but the description is up on the wiki) says that they are hollows who appear to be half dragon, and are a result of some horrible experiment. If Aldia had experimented on creating dragons, it makes sense that he'd have plenty of unsuccessful attempts first, such as these.

Finally, the Lost Sinner has a great big bushy beard. It's more pronounced in the art book, but still noticeable in game. If my calculations are correct, most girls don't have huge beards. That said, Gwyndolin had some rather strange sexual dimorphism himself, so we could just be dealing with a bearded woman. Either way there's a lot of strange stuff surrounding the Lost Sinner, and I look forward to everyone poking holes in this theory.

#263 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

I haven't been in here for a while! Just wanna run something by you guys - is Shanalotte the old hag from the intro? I've heard some people (ENB, notably) say so, but it just don't make no damn sense! For one thing, she has a clear Irish/Gaelic-type accent, AND she has heterochromia. Neither of those are evident in the old hag. If they're supposed to be the same person, FROM dropped the ball.

#264 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@brackstone: I Immediately dismissed this when I read it a couple days ago, I mean how can you have Aldia all the way in the Bastille when item descriptions clearly state that Vendrick locked him up in his estate (presumably behind the King's gate that you need his ring to access) before he was never heard from again. But something just hit me like a sack of bricks. While messing around in Aldia's Keep I happened to look up after entering the room with the dragon skelly and noticed some statues way up high along the wall that I'd never noticed before. They are identical to the statue in the Lost Bastille in the room with the Pharros contraption which leads to the shortcut to Sinner's Rise, the one holding a sword in one hand and a scroll in the other. I think we can do the math and say with little uncertainty that the statue depicts Aldia. Now this statue is also bearded, lending to what you and many other claim about the Sinner having a scraggly beard growing out from under her(?) mask. In my confidence that the Sinner is female I dismissed that possibility as well, after all it could just be hair from the top of her(?) head pressed against her(?) face under the mask. But then I looked at the art book, and it is true as you say that definitely looks like a beard. What's more is that one could see that the robes worn by the statue might look a bit like the robes of the Lost Sinner if they were to be tattered... God I wish I could take a screenshot of that statue or even find one online but I can't, you guys have to take a look for yourselves.

With a bit of mind-fuckery I can buy Aldia being imprisoned in the Lost Bastille, and Vendrick only locking up the manor and neglecting to mention the fate of his brother. Everyone assumes he perishes over time or whatever because he's never heard from again. At this point the only thing holding this theory back I think is that the Lost Sinner is referred to as a woman in her(?) soul description. But that could be because of the Old Witch's soul exerting influence... There could also be a Gwyndolin type of situation going on here but not in the "that lady has a beard" way like you said, I'm thinking more along the lines of the Bastille being a "night-time area" where the moon is always present.

This is some pretty wild stuff, and I really wish I could tear this theory apart but I really think you're on to something. I did a little search to see if anyone else has brought this up on other boards but I couldn't find anything, either comparing Aldia to the Sinner or even mentioning the statue placements. Haha two days ago I thought you were crazy and now I'm feeling pretty crazy myself...

#265 Posted by DanTheGamer32 (223 posts) -

@rocketboot: so what you're suggesting is maybe The Lost Sinner (if indeed it is actually Aldia) could have been brought to the Bastille under false pretenses? The clothes mention a terrible sin, Vendrick didn't exactly approve of his brother's actions. Perhaps Aldia was whisked away one day (disappearing without a trace) by Vendrick's men, bound up, tongue cut out so he couldn't speak (TLS doesn't exactly say much), and forced to wear the Penal Mask to cover up his identity. Also, TLS's weapon of choice? A pretty long sword, wielded with skill even with bound hands, which is a similar kind of weapon wielded by the statues you connected.

If this is true, it's fucked up... and I like it ;)

#266 Posted by DanTheGamer32 (223 posts) -

@rocketboot: also, by 'false pretenses' i mean that he was brought to the prison with a different identity, that of a woman. And as we discussed about the 'dragons' mentioned in text mostly not really being dragons, the same kind of rule could apply here.

#267 Edited by Zevvion (1873 posts) -

Nah, I don't buy in to any of that. It's way too loose of a theory. Lost Sinner is female, Aldia is male. There are some theories that Lost Sinner may be Witch of Izalith's sister, but not conclusive evidence, and you'll probably never find any. There is nothing to suggest it may be Aldia. There are far more hints that Aldia is the Ancient Dragon and even then there is no evidence. The only thing for certain is that Ancient Dragon is created and not a born dragon. That it's Aldia has some interesting and believable theories, but not proven.

I would sooner believe that Lost Sinner was the wife of Aldia, even though I haven't read anything about her, than believing it is the man.

#268 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@danthegamer32: Unfortunately the Lost Sinner's Sword has a different hilt/pommel to the sword held by the statue. I intend on doing some comparisons later today but from memory the statue looks a little like an Estoc. Not too sure though.

@zevvion: Don't dismiss precedent as lack of evidence. Gwyndolin was portrayed as female although we knew him to be the son of Gwyn. We've also seen untruths in item descriptions many times in this game. And seriously take a look at the concept art for the Sinner in the art book if you have access to it, there is no doubt in my mind that is a beard. I'll take a photo of it and post it if I have to!

#269 Posted by development (2350 posts) -

@rocketboot: are you guys talking about the statue you get to with the Antiquated Key (you break through some boards in the wall first)? It definitely stands out as unique among the game's statues. I'll have to go back there.

I think the idea with the most evidence is that Aldia is Navlaan: He's in his manor; his mind was warped and taken over by his experiments; item descriptions say that the Dragon Acolytes (dudes with the orb faces) "were not of their own mind" during their work in Aldia's Keep, seemingly in the same way Navlaan is taking over "Aldia's" own mind. There are other things, but I forgot. I wrote about it on the last page or something.

#270 Posted by Myrmicus (223 posts) -

@rocketboot: are you guys talking about the statue you get to with the Antiquated Key (you break through some boards in the wall first)? It definitely stands out as unique among the game's statues. I'll have to go back there.

I think the idea with the most evidence is that Aldia is Navlaan: He's in his manor; his mind was warped and taken over by his experiments; item descriptions say that the Dragon Acolytes (dudes with the orb faces) "were not of their own mind" during their work in Aldia's Keep, seemingly in the same way Navlaan is taking over "Aldia's" own mind. There are other things, but I forgot. I wrote about it on the last page or something.

I support the idea that Aldia is Navlaan much more than the idea of Aldia being the Lost Sinner. The Sinner is female, Aldia is Male. It is told that Aldia was locked in his mansion before disappearing, while the Lost Sinner imprisonned herself (it's not stated whre, but since we find her in the Lost Bastille...). And we also know that Vendrick uses the creations made by Aldia... so the presence of Aldia's creatures in some other places doesn't prove anything.

#271 Posted by development (2350 posts) -

@myrmicus: Also, it doesn't really seem like Aldia was much of a fighter. He was the nerdy guy, equivalent to Gwyndolin, who just hung out and made robots.

#272 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

Well I'm bit going to argue any further as to the Sinner's gender, I've given my evidence and you can all choose to accept or ignore it. I don't think you can say Aldia wasn't a fighter, those statues in his manor show him holding a sword and a scroll so we can assume he was a sort of warrior scholar. Although you can find his creations all over I think it's noteworthy that you only find those extremely mutated undead in the run up to the Lost Sinner (aside from the caged one in Aldia's Keep of course). One more point I just discovered: the first place we find the Northern Ritual Band is in the Sinner's Rise. Like it or not there is a lot to go off of here. Definitely more that the Ancient Dragon theory anyway.

#273 Posted by Mezmero (1905 posts) -

The beard on The Lost Sinner is definitely the strangest design choice for the character. The best explanation I can come up with ties into something Shalquoir says. She muses that the Old Ones must have grown a thick coat of moss on themselves by now. It was probably meant as a joke on her part but considering how long the Lost Sinner must have been there it's plausible that the so called beard is actually just moss or something growing on her clothing or mask. I haven't seen a good picture of her head so it's hard to say for sure.

#274 Edited by rocketboot (138 posts) -

Photos of the Lost Sinner in the art book. Sorry about the quality, I'd have scanned the page but I'd rather not tear it out... Anyway it's pretty clear to me that's a beard. The Sinner also seems to be a bit lacking in the chest area.

Now I'm going to state these arguments one last time for anyone who doesn't want to scroll up. It's possible that the Sinner was portrayed as feminine for two reasons: the possession of the Old With Soul and it's influence on the land and reality, as well as the fact that the Lost Bastille is a "night time area" where the moon is always present. Gwyndolin was portrayed as a woman because of his affinity to the moon, even though he was the only remaining son of the main deity at the time.

Unfortunately I very foolishly went to NG++ on my main toon last night not thinking I should get some shots of the statue in the Lost Bastille and of the statues in Aldia's Keep to show you guys that they're the same. But you can check it out for yourselves! The statue in the Bastille is most easily accessible from the No-Man's Warf entrance. After fighting the jailer that drops from the scaffolding with the two dogs take the path to the right (I think you need to break some boards?) continue until you reach a room containing a Pharros contraption and a couple Royal Swordsmen. There's no need to use a lockstone, just light a torch. You'll see a statue of a woman holding her hand out closest to the entrance and to her left there is a larger statue of a bearded man wearing robes holding a sword in one hand and a scroll in the other. This is the statue in question. Next stop is Aldia's Keep. From the courtyard bonfire head into the manor. Upon entering the room with the animated dragon skeleton, turn around and look up. Way up. You might want to look through a bow or the binoculars but you will see 6-8 of the same statue (the man with the sword and scroll) lining the wall. You can make them out very clearly there's no question it's the same statue.

I've done a lot of comparison between the sword the statue is carrying and every other sword in the game. None of them match.

#275 Posted by Nicked (248 posts) -

This might not count as "lore", but I think it's interesting how this game is basically identical to BioShock Infinite. Personally I think the samsara theme is kind of a cop out in any instance, but I think the ideas are better conveyed here. Just thought it was weird how very different games express exactly the same idea.

Anyway, is there any mention of Frampt/Kaathe anywhere in the game? The total absence of any primordial serpents seems strange. I noticed the three snakes in the Shrine of Winter with their heads cut off and so suspected that they would become involved at some point, but nothing. And of course there's a billion references to "king-seeking".

This is compounded by the Shrine seeming to be a very important place, since it requires 4 great souls/1 million souls to enter. But why would the statue of the serpents by desecrated?

I did note that the statues have scales, which Frampt and Kaathe did not, so maybe I'm totally wrong, but I don't know what else to make of it.

#276 Edited by development (2350 posts) -

@rocketboot: I went in and took some pics. It's just a statue they made for decoration, it seems. It might be someone significant, but I'm not seeing anything that relates him to anyone. The same statues being in Aldia's manor could be significant, but we need more than that.

  • Sword is fairly generic. Doesn't match Lost Sinner's. Blade is round, rather than flat, with its tip embedded in the base of the statue, so it's impossible to tell if its tip is sharp like a large rapier.
  • Robe is just one big bed sheet, in the style of a Greek God, perhaps (but I know nothing about history!). Someone mentioned his robe looking like a non-tattered Lost Sinner set, but upon inspection it doesn't... at all. Sinner's set is comprised of very distinct different pieces, complete with buckles.

Just seems to me to be a fairly easily-made Greek-ish statue with a paper scroll thrown in. That being said, I'd like a good bed sheet to run around in. All those flowy physics would look greeaat.

I think the most likely explanation for this

bearded lady with seemingly no female features is... game production. They made a boss that was a dude. Didn't fit the lore how they wanted. They made "him" a "her." That's my guess. OR... see that bug? Maybe that's the "her." DARK SOULS!

#277 Edited by development (2350 posts) -

@nicked said:

This might not count as "lore", but I think it's interesting how this game is basically identical to BioShock Infinite. Personally I think the samsara theme is kind of a cop out in any instance, but I think the ideas are better conveyed here. Just thought it was weird how very different games express exactly the same idea.

Anyway, is there any mention of Frampt/Kaathe anywhere in the game? The total absence of any primordial serpents seems strange. I noticed the three snakes in the Shrine of Winter with their heads cut off and so suspected that they would become involved at some point, but nothing. And of course there's a billion references to "king-seeking".

This is compounded by the Shrine seeming to be a very important place, since it requires 4 great souls/1 million souls to enter. But why would the statue of the serpents by desecrated?

I did note that the statues have scales, which Frampt and Kaathe did not, so maybe I'm totally wrong, but I don't know what else to make of it.

I had the same thoughts. I really, really don't like this whole "the cycle begins again!" bullshit. To be fair, even Demon's Souls had that, so it's nothing specific to this game, except that this game really hammers that idea into your head. At least 3 different NPCs (Gilligan, Chloanne, Shalquoir) say something very similar to "countless kingdoms have fallen here and countless more will continue to." EDIT: and Saulden!

I think people are overcomplicating the shrine. It's supposed to represent the lordvessel being surrounded by the primordial serpents. That big giant bowl in the middle? It's a depiction of the lordvessel. What do you need to do to open it? Gather great souls. The significance of the name "shrine of Winter" alludes me, but I suspect there was a period of dark after the serpents became unneeded for whatever reason. I think someone installed the shrine there as a means to prevent those who are unworthy of proceeding and getting themselves slaughtered, and merely depicted the serpents and lordvessel as a form of remembrance.

I replayed Dark Souls 1 recently, and they don't have "scales" but they do have very similar ridges in their skin. Artists make small changes like that all the time; it's nothing new, and it also helps to accentuate the smooth area where their heads are depicted as chopped off.

#278 Posted by Nicked (248 posts) -

@development: Ah, very interesting. I thought that thing in the middle looked Lordvessel-y, but didn't put it together that (of course) you offer the 4 souls in Dark Souls 1 to open the door. That makes much more sense now.

One other thing I just noticed is that some of the statues in the castle are also decapitated--particularly two horse-guy statues near the bonfire just before Nashandra. The very same horse-guys who come alive just before the Looking Glass Knight. I didn't check but I think a few in that hallway are decapitated as well, as are some of the regular soldier-guy statues throughout.

Not 100% sure what to make of it, but 1) this reminded me of the body politic and 2) it seems premeditated to me, like someone had a reason to not want those statues to come to life (notwithstanding that other Undead in Drangleic might have worn the statues out over the years). I have to wonder if the serpents might have also become animated if they were intact.

#279 Posted by development (2350 posts) -

@nicked: It says somewhere that the soldiers in Drangleic castle turned to stone waiting for the return of their commander, Velstadt, who they didn't know had turned into an effective leashed zombie of Vendrick's. I suspect some have no heads simply because they crumbled with age. The others, like the ones you see on your trip up to the dual-Dragonriders, never come to life for gameplay convenience, is my theory.

#280 Posted by DanTheGamer32 (223 posts) -

@nicked: I think that's just a subtle gameplay hint: when those statues come to life later you notice they have heads where as the ones that don't come to life are decapitated, so you can figure out from there that attacking the statues before they come to life = instant death

#281 Edited by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@development: Thanks for adding that. I don't think it's decorative, most of these kind of things in these games are put there for a reason. What you mentioned about the bug is kind of what I was getting at. Kind of.

About the Shrine of Winter: there's a thread on Reddit I think where a guy has screenshots showing that the four carvings on the wall in there are actually pieces of a bigger carving found in the Dranon Shrine above the petrified dragon egg. This carving shows 3 dragons, some people seemingly worshipping one of them, and a man with a staff placing his hand on a child's head. Again I would say this falls on the side of meaningful rather than decorative.

edit: you can find that reddit thread here

#282 Edited by development (2350 posts) -

@rocketboot: You must have misunderstood something I said. I don't think the Shrine is decorative at all. The only things I was saying might be mostly decorative are the Zeus-lookin' statue wearing the toga and a lot of the immobile stone soldiers.

And yep, I know about the Winter Shrine's murals. Spent an hour or so trying to decipher them with the help of another Reddit thread. Didn't know about the mural in the Dragon Shrine's egg room, so thanks I'll go check that out.

#283 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@development: I didn't misunderstand anything, that was a bit of a jab. Why do you consider one thing to be important while seeing another as decorative? That statue is only seen in 2 locations, and the first is a dark room that seems to be for storage. That's the kind of vague, half hidden reference From has built storytelling off of. Kind of like a few carvings in another dark room that reference something seen in only one other place. Or like Heide's Tower of Flame resembling Anor Londo. The answers are always ambiguous but they always mean something. That's why we're all here, right?

#284 Edited by development (2350 posts) -

@rocketboot: Oh I get it. Well I try to also think of things in terms of game design and the time constraints developers have. DS2 is a much different beast from King's Field or Demon's Souls, and even Dark Souls 1. We all know Miyazaki left, but yes, I think a lot of the design philosophy remains intact, even the ambiguous coincidences. I agree with you there. I don't just pick what I think to be decorative arbitrarily; there's a good reason.

That being said, I think calling it decorative was dumb. You're right that it is pretty unique and seems to serve a purpose in the lore. My main point is that there isn't evidence for who it is at all. The statue being in Aldia's manor is one piece of loose evidence; evidence that Navlaan also holds, among other much more substantial evidence. And if Aldia is Navlaan then he can't very well be The Lost Sinner. Of course, I'm not saying my idea is correct at all; just pointing out that one idea has more evidence than the other. I'm prepared to be proven wrong at any moment. That's why I'm here.

#285 Edited by Karkarov (3104 posts) -

@development said:

@rocketboot: Oh I get it. Well I try to also think of things in terms of game design and the time constraints developers have. DS2 is a much different beast from King's Field or Demon's Souls, and even Dark Souls 1. We all know Miyazaki left, but yes, I think a lot of the design philosophy remains intact, even the ambiguous coincidences. I agree with you there. I don't just pick what I think to be decorative arbitrarily; there's a good reason.

That being said, I think calling it decorative was dumb. You're right that it is pretty unique and seems to serve a purpose in the lore. My main point is that there isn't evidence for who it is at all. The statue being in Aldia's manor is one piece of loose evidence; evidence that Navlaan also holds, among other much more substantial evidence. And if Aldia is Navlaan then he can't very well be The Lost Sinner. Of course, I'm not saying my idea is correct at all; just pointing out that one idea has more evidence than the other. I'm prepared to be proven wrong at any moment. That's why I'm here.

Well considering the lost sinner is a woman I am pretty sure Aldia (the king's brother) and Navlaan (you meet him in game, clearly a dude) are not them. It isn't even suggested, fairly certain the item descriptions for the Lost Sinner gear straight up say the Lost Sinner is female. You dudes as usual are just over thinking it and trying to find connections where there are none. I also find it ironically hilarious that my theory of who the sinner was got slammed and ignored out right way back but we have all these posts arguing for the sinner to be someone that blatantly are not.

#286 Posted by Dragon4234 (133 posts) -
@karkarov said:

@development said:

@rocketboot: Oh I get it. Well I try to also think of things in terms of game design and the time constraints developers have. DS2 is a much different beast from King's Field or Demon's Souls, and even Dark Souls 1. We all know Miyazaki left, but yes, I think a lot of the design philosophy remains intact, even the ambiguous coincidences. I agree with you there. I don't just pick what I think to be decorative arbitrarily; there's a good reason.

That being said, I think calling it decorative was dumb. You're right that it is pretty unique and seems to serve a purpose in the lore. My main point is that there isn't evidence for who it is at all. The statue being in Aldia's manor is one piece of loose evidence; evidence that Navlaan also holds, among other much more substantial evidence. And if Aldia is Navlaan then he can't very well be The Lost Sinner. Of course, I'm not saying my idea is correct at all; just pointing out that one idea has more evidence than the other. I'm prepared to be proven wrong at any moment. That's why I'm here.

Well considering the lost sinner is a woman I am pretty sure Aldia (the king's brother) and Navlaan (you meet him in game, clearly a dude) are not them. It isn't even suggested, fairly certain the item descriptions for the Lost Sinner gear straight up say the Lost Sinner is female. You dudes as usual are just over thinking it and trying to find connections where there are none. I also find it ironically hilarious that my theory of who the sinner was got slammed and ignored out right way back but we have all these posts arguing for the sinner to be someone that blatantly are not.

I dunno man that beard is highly suspect. Though I figure her identity would have something to do with the First Flame, given that her soul states she "eternally punishes herself for the sins of her past." Sounds to me like self imprisonment.

#287 Posted by hollitz (1522 posts) -

@garr123 said:

Solaire may have been the one who linked the fire, since it says a saint did it and he seems to be regarded as a saint in other flavor text. In DS1 you see him link the fire in his world if you summon him for the fight with Gwyn regardless of what you decide to do.

Wait, where/when does this happen? I beat the game for the first time 2-3 months ago, summoned Solaire for Gwyn and did the Dark Lord ending and I definitely didn't see this.

#288 Posted by Brackstone (66 posts) -

Oh man, didn't think my weird Lost Sinner idea would be so contentious. I think the statue is an interesting link, but there is a problem with such links. If we consider the repetition of environmental objects to be indicative of the lore, then we must also bring up the fact that the door leading into sinner's rise is the same as a door from the Iron Keep, and people have used that to go in an entirely different direction with their theories.

I think the biggest obstacle to all this theorizing is whether or not the designers of Dark Souls 2 were as thorough in linking almost everything in the game world to the lore. For example, the beard could simply have been an oversight, and the fact that the weird dragon person mutant things appear in the Lost Bastille may not be due to lore reasons, but simply game design. After all, those exploding mummies appear absolutely everywhere.

The discussion of who Aldia is (if he is even in the game) is a difficult one, as is any discussion of lore in this game, since overall Drangleic feels much more sloppily put together than Lordran. I'm going to roll with my Lost Sinner idea for now, since at the very least, it gives more to discuss about her, since together with the Rotten, the Lost Sinner seems to have little direct connection to the rest of the game, a strange thing for members of the big 4.

One last thing I realized while writing this post. Returning to the topic of the dragon mutants and expliding mummies, the exploding mummies, according to this description, are the results of Aldia's experiments. As I said though, they do show up all over the place in the game, but two enemies with explicit links to Aldia being essentially locked up along with the Lost Sinner is at least an indication that Aldia was involved in the Lost Bastille in some way, whether it was as heavily as I put forward, or merely just using it as a source of subjects for his experiments.

#289 Posted by Dragon4234 (133 posts) -
@hollitz said:

@garr123 said:

Solaire may have been the one who linked the fire, since it says a saint did it and he seems to be regarded as a saint in other flavor text. In DS1 you see him link the fire in his world if you summon him for the fight with Gwyn regardless of what you decide to do.

Wait, where/when does this happen? I beat the game for the first time 2-3 months ago, summoned Solaire for Gwyn and did the Dark Lord ending and I definitely didn't see this.

Nah that's just a heap of bullshit. There's an interview that makes it Word of God that if Solarie lives, he lights the fire. If anything the Sublime Bone Dust is a reference to the Chosen Undead for all we know.

#290 Edited by Karkarov (3104 posts) -

@brackstone said:

One last thing I realized while writing this post. Returning to the topic of the dragon mutants and expliding mummies, the exploding mummies, according to this description, are the results of Aldia's experiments. As I said though, they do show up all over the place in the game, but two enemies with explicit links to Aldia being essentially locked up along with the Lost Sinner is at least an indication that Aldia was involved in the Lost Bastille in some way, whether it was as heavily as I put forward, or merely just using it as a source of subjects for his experiments.

I really don't think mob placement matters dude. For example you fight gravekeepers (that is literally what they are and what their item set is called) inside Earthen Peak, which despite the name is actually a windmill. Also those mutant dragon things aren't dragon things.... they are just mutant monsters. And they drop Bell Keeper Bows. Try explaining that one.

@dragon4234: Are you saying some women cant grow beards? My life experience begs to differ.

#291 Posted by Brackstone (66 posts) -

@karkarov: Well the thing I'm saying is that it's hard to tell what may or may not matter. The gravekeepers indeed are a weird enemy to be placed in earthen peak, but earthen peak and harvest valley shows other signs of being a rushed area. The problem is that in DS1, enemy placement could indeed have story implications, and DS1 was fairly reliable in the way that almost everything seemed to have been placed in the game with a purpose. DS2 is much less reliable, so while earthen peak is a rather inconsistent area, other places could still have that consistency.

Enemy placement could be indicative of lore, but it can't be said for sure one way or another. I don't think it's right to dismiss enemy placement entirely, nor do I think it's right to think everything in the game has some deep meaning. You're right about item drops making no sense at all, I think the spiders with their countless ricard's rapiers show that best. The lost bastille's enemy placement could have deeper implications, but it may not. It's fun to discuss it either way.

Also, they're totally dragon things : http://darksouls2.wikidot.com/enhanced-undead

#292 Posted by rocketboot (138 posts) -

@brackstone: The doors in the Iron Keep and Sinner's rise do have an implication, actually. Do the names Alkan and Venn ring any bells? I'm second guessing my choice of pun there... Anyway the two belfries contain a ton of lore which states that those two kingdoms were created by the same guy. The bells are named for Alkan and Venn, suggesting that the Bastille and the Iron Keep are these two kingdoms and therefore built by the same ruler. Hence the doors.

#293 Posted by Brackstone (66 posts) -

@rocketboot: Huh, wasn't aware of that stuff. The theories I saw people making about the door were about more direct links between the Lost Sinner and Old Iron King. What you said seems like the easiest explanation though.

#294 Posted by development (2350 posts) -

@hollitz said:

@garr123 said:

Solaire may have been the one who linked the fire, since it says a saint did it and he seems to be regarded as a saint in other flavor text. In DS1 you see him link the fire in his world if you summon him for the fight with Gwyn regardless of what you decide to do.

Wait, where/when does this happen? I beat the game for the first time 2-3 months ago, summoned Solaire for Gwyn and did the Dark Lord ending and I definitely didn't see this.

Nah that's just a heap of bullshit. There's an interview that makes it Word of God that if Solarie lives, he lights the fire. If anything the Sublime Bone Dust is a reference to the Chosen Undead for all we know.

Yeah when I went back and played the game I went through the trouble of doing his stupid sidequest again and I didn't see shit. Was this rumor really started from an interview? Was it the Miyazaki/artists interview? People do seem to act like this is a confirmed truth, but you straight up see nothing other than your typical phantom disappearance that you get at the end of every boss battle.

#295 Edited by development (2350 posts) -

@karkarov said:

Well considering the lost sinner is a woman I am pretty sure Aldia (the king's brother) and Navlaan (you meet him in game, clearly a dude) are not them. It isn't even suggested, fairly certain the item descriptions for the Lost Sinner gear straight up say the Lost Sinner is female. You dudes as usual are just over thinking it and trying to find connections where there are none. I also find it ironically hilarious that my theory of who the sinner was got slammed and ignored out right way back but we have all these posts arguing for the sinner to be someone that blatantly are not.

They were just throwing the idea around. I don't think anyone was saying anything definitively. Although, I wouldn't give any credence to the Sinner/Aldia connection. Dubious at the very best. If there's anyone/thing in the game that could possibly be seen as Aldia it seems to be Navlaan, but even that is just an idea without any real evidence.

I wouldn't take it personally that people either dismissed or didn't see your previous post about this. Who do you think the Sinner was?

edit:

@rocketboot That makes sense, about the same person (I think it was the Old Iron King) building both areas. There is some much more up-front dialogue from... someone (possibly Shalquoir or Straid) that says "a" King feared all undead, and even rounded up those who weren't undead and locked them away (sent them to the Bastille). I'm lead to believe, through other dialogue or descriptions (can't remember), that the crazy belligerent king was the Old Iron King. Vendrick, on the other hand, appeared to be a legitimately good king and respected for a good deal of time.

Although, my confusion with this is that Vendrick also seemingly tried to eradicate the Undead. We know Vendrick didn't build the Bastille, though, because Straid had been a stone there for a long time and doesn't recognize the name "Drangleic," the name of Vendrick's kingdom.

#296 Posted by dudeglove (7859 posts) -

@sunbrozak: True once you knew what you were doing, the world felt pretty small and you could run from Duke's Archives to Lost Izalith in about 10 minutes but I think it makes a better impression when you first go through the game than Dark Sous 2, giving little discoveries like "oooh so that leads to that, I get it now.." kind of feeling. I suppose it is in a sense an example of short term exploration rewarding versus long term exploration rewarding that Dark Souls 2 goes for. As you said it goes for wide sense of scale rather than tigher interweaving paths.

I think this is highlighted the most in the transition between Earthen Peak and Iron Keep. It felt like a bad copy of Blighttown Swamp and Izalith and was somewhat jarring. There was more a sense of gradual progression in DkS1 (literally you transition from an organic mess down an increasingly reddening tunnel and then you emerge in a lava cavern), whereas DS2 has you leave crappy Earthen Peak via an elevator, then emerge at a friggin' volcano with no decent warm up in between. Scanning around the area before Earthen Peak, I couldn't really see anything that would indicate supposedly volcanic activity, or a precursor of things to come (i.e. iron bridges, flames, various switches and levers to pull). In the Quelaag fight, the stones around indicate that you're at the very edge of Izalith's ruins, while Quelaag and some of the flame spider bug things have various fire attacks. You could argue that the poisonous gases in Earthern Peak and whatnot are probably from sulphur or something, but the only real geographical hints you get are mostly in Majula, where's it's possible to see Heide's, Shaded Ruins, Castle Drangleic and a couple of other places (although they just look painted into the skybox, rather than tower over or under as part of the landscape).

That's what I really loved about Dark Souls 1, in that you really just had to look around to find out where to go. Hell, from a cliff edge at Firelink bonfire it's possible to see both Blighttown and Undeadburg looking just up and down i.e. your first main objective(s), just like the crestfallen warrior says. I don't get nearly the same imposing vibe as DS2, but maybe that can be put down to over-familiarity with the first game's material rather than any failings on the designers' part.

#297 Posted by Mezmero (1905 posts) -

The doors in the Iron Keep and Sinner's rise do have an implication, actually. Do the names Alkan and Venn ring any bells? I'm second guessing my choice of pun there... Anyway the two belfries contain a ton of lore which states that those two kingdoms were created by the same guy. The bells are named for Alkan and Venn, suggesting that the Bastille and the Iron Keep are these two kingdoms and therefore built by the same ruler. Hence the doors.

@rocketboot That makes sense, about the same person (I think it was the Old Iron King) building both areas. There is some much more up-front dialogue from... someone (possibly Shalquoir or Straid) that says "a" King feared all undead, and even rounded up those who weren't undead and locked them away (sent them to the Bastille). I'm lead to believe, through other dialogue or descriptions (can't remember), that the crazy belligerent king was the Old Iron King. Vendrick, on the other hand, appeared to be a legitimately good king and respected for a good deal of time.

Although, my confusion with this is that Vendrick also seemingly tried to eradicate the Undead. We know Vendrick didn't build the Bastille, though, because Straid had been a stone there for a long time and doesn't recognize the name "Drangleic," the name of Vendrick's kingdom.

I've actually been thinking about the Belfries recently and what exactly their deal is. The dwarves in the towers and Gilligan talk about a prince and a princess and of some kind of forbidden love. Considering the Belfries are named after the sun and moon it seems like a clear reference to Gwyn's kids. Thinking back to the first game you have Gwyndolin (darkmoon = Luna) and Gwynavere (the false sun of Anor Londo = Sol). It's probably not the two actual characters being spoken about but perhaps their souls were reincarnated at some point in Drangleic's history along with the four great souls. We know that the Old Iron King inherited the great soul of Gwyn so the signs would point to him being the king and father of these two unseen entities. The Iron Keep has been Drangleics main resource of iron and steel meaning that the metal bars and doors of the Bastille were possibly provided by the Old Iron King's smiths. Why he would go to such lengths to keep his son and daughter apart is perhaps another story.

#298 Edited by Karkarov (3104 posts) -

@development said:


I wouldn't take it personally that people either dismissed or didn't see your previous post about this. Who do you think the Sinner was?

My theory was that the Lost Sinner was Raime, the "left hand of the King" per the description of the Rebel's Greatshield. 1: Raime is a female name. 2: The cat says the Lost Sinner was imprisoned for trying to light the first flame. 3: Raime was deemed a traitor "because their wills clashed" meaning her's and the King's. 4: Trying to light the first flame definitely would have been a "clash of wills". 5: The Lost Sinner is a woman. 6: Raime was clearly a warrior as she used a Greatshield and the Lost Sinner is clearly a warrior as well. 7: They are the only two female characters in the game who were both cast down for being traitors.

#299 Posted by Myrmicus (223 posts) -

@karkarov said:

@brackstone said:

One last thing I realized while writing this post. Returning to the topic of the dragon mutants and expliding mummies, the exploding mummies, according to this description, are the results of Aldia's experiments. As I said though, they do show up all over the place in the game, but two enemies with explicit links to Aldia being essentially locked up along with the Lost Sinner is at least an indication that Aldia was involved in the Lost Bastille in some way, whether it was as heavily as I put forward, or merely just using it as a source of subjects for his experiments.

I really don't think mob placement matters dude. For example you fight gravekeepers (that is literally what they are and what their item set is called) inside Earthen Peak, which despite the name is actually a windmill. Also those mutant dragon things aren't dragon things.... they are just mutant monsters. And they drop Bell Keeper Bows. Try explaining that one.

@dragon4234: Are you saying some women cant grow beards? My life experience begs to differ.

Yeah, already stated that we know Vendrick used Aldia's experiments in his kingdom, which explain why we find Aldia's creations all over Drangleic. As for the undead dragon mutants rotting in Lost Bastille... Well, we should remember the purpose of the Bastille : It serves the same purpose than the Undead Asylum from DS1, that's where Undead are sent to rot. We also know that Vendrick banished Aldia to his manor, because he wouldn't have anything to do with the methods of Aldia. But he still uses his creations... except from those mutants, which were sent to the Bastille.

Actually, it's a good hint on which Aldia's experiments Vendrick didn't agree : merging humans and dragons. Of course, the reason could be much simpler : the mutants are Undeads. That is why Aldia used them for his experiments in the first place.

Now the fact that those monstrous creatures drop Bell Keepers bows and shields bugged me. The Bell Keepers are mechanical constructs, created by the Iron King for the sole purpose of defending the Bells. But perhaps they weren't the first to guard the bells and, upon realizing that the human guards would turn undead sooner or later, the Iron King could have decinded to replace them with something that couldn't be cursed : the Bell Keepers. I think the mutated undeads we find in the Bastille were the first Bell Keepers, before turning undead. Upon turning undead, the Iron King could have sent them to Aldia's which experimented on them.

#300 Posted by Karkarov (3104 posts) -

@myrmicus said:

The Bell Keepers are mechanical constructs, created by the Iron King for the sole purpose of defending the Bells. But perhaps they weren't the first to guard the bells and, upon realizing that the human guards would turn undead sooner or later, the Iron King could have decinded to replace them with something that couldn't be cursed : the Bell Keepers. I think the mutated undeads we find in the Bastille were the first Bell Keepers, before turning undead. Upon turning undead, the Iron King could have sent them to Aldia's which experimented on them.

Except the bell keepers are midget dudes not robots and the mutants can't hold bows cause they are all mutated.

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