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When the Northern kingdoms fell in the War of Calamities, many groups disintegrated in the ensuing chaos. However, especially in Lamniemalos, some groups held together.

Posted by MisterAmbidextrous on Jan 25th, 2014

Lore Special: The Somstrynd Clans

When the Northern kingdoms fell in the War of Calamities, many groups disintegrated in the ensuing chaos. However, especially in Lamniemalos, some groups held together. One such group was a coalition of clans that would form what would be called the Somstrynd, the “Concord of Kin,” a pact that bound the four clans - Beran, Hafecas, Wulfas, and Holnas - into a unified power. The Somstrynd Clans then took and rebuilt the fortresses in the western mountains of Lamniemalos, giving them great influence in the regions surrounding them. To this day, they are one of the most feared powers in the North.

Beran Guard

Clan Beran

In the cold northern reaches of the Somstrynd territory, the great warriors of Clan Beran have established themselves in the fortress of Mórsael, their strength and hardiness reflecting the bears for which their clan is named. Clan Beran are renowned for their sheer strength in battle, wielding their great bardiches in battle with great skill. They are also known for their vast mines, many worked by slaves and prisoners garnered through war, raids, and conquest.

Hafoc Archer

Clan Hafecas

Clan Hafecas, whose seat of power is at Fort Heábold, is home to some of the deadliest archers in the North. They hold sway mainly in the southern regions of the Somstrynd’s holdings in Lamniemalos and are known to be a more reasonable clan than the others. Like the hawk, they can strike swiftly and are at home in the craggy heights they inhabit. Clan Hafecas was the last to join the Somstrynd and was the most hesitant. This reticence combined with their oft questioning of the common practices of the northern clans has led to them being distrusted by many within the Somstrynd.

Wulf Warrior

Clan Wulfas

Taking after the wolves that appear on their banners, Clan Wulfas’ warriors are known as being cunning and deadly hunters, stealthy and yet brutally effective in combat. Unlike the other clans, Clan Wulfas has a heavy emphasis on subterfuge: sabotage, assassination, and espionage are all standard fare in their war tactics. In the rise of Thenodar, Clan Wulfas lost their stronghold of Faestan and were forced to set up their headquarters in Clan Beran’s second fortress, Fort Ísmúr. As such, Clan Wulfas is the most aggressive towards Thenodar and often attempts raids in Thenodar’s northern lands. If there is to be war between Thenodar and the Somstrynd, it is likely to begin with Clan Wulfas.

Holen Knight

Clan Holnas

Clan Holnas, whose stronghold is Holenburg, is the chief clan of the Somstrynd and is also an oddity among its brethren: while the clans Beran, Hafecas, and Wulfas are all originally northern peoples, Holnas was originally a more southern clan. As such, Clan Holnas is more “civilized” in the conventional sense, bringing over both military and social structures from the more urbanized areas in the south of Lamniemalos. Their knights go unmounted very often, wielding great claymores or deadly hammers, and their armor is forged by the Somstrynd’s finest smiths. They often go into battle adorned with holly, an ancient symbol of spiritual warriors. However, these heroic visuals belie their true nature, for Clan Holnas rule their lands with an iron grip.

Post comment Comments
ElfFriend Jan 26 2014 says:

That concept art looks amazing. I like it how each group is different from each other in a noticeable way. Clan Beran looks very dunlanding or rohan inspired while that knight looks simply stunning. So since there will be different groups and by the sounds of it special letters in names like Mórsael will there be complete langueses like in nearly every lore out there? (Star wars, game of thrones, lord of the rings, the elder scrolls, the witcher, etc) and if there will be a langue will names like Mórsael mean something (ie "minus morgual" meaning "city of sorcery" if I remember correctly. I'm not going to use wikies at nearly 4am)

Oh and I recently saw probably the best combat in any medieval game so far. Kingdom Come Diliverance announced their kickstarter a few days ago and they have easily blasted through their main streach goal. They hope to make a realistic medieval game that's "only" 9km2 which compared to lays of althas's height map is not a lot. But their combat, pickpocketing, and a few other game mechanics is pretty awesome in my opinion. Oh and their using Skyrim, Witcher, Mount and Blade and Dark Souls as inspiration.

+8 votes     reply to comment
lnsanity Jan 26 2014 replied:

First of all, I want to say that what I say here is subject to change and not definite.
On languages, we have them well in hand. I hope we can deliver on your expectations. I'm not sure how much I can state, but I think I should be able to tell you that, yes, the names mean things, and yes, it's an actual translatable language.
On Deliverance - we've been very aware of that particular project. It seems to be aiming to do much of the same kind of gameplay as we are, but there are noticeable differences, especially in setting and theme. I'm not sure about their combat, but I think it might differ somewhat from what we want to do. We would also be sure to try and implement as many mechanics as well as we can - we're gamers too, after all, we know what people like in their RPGs. Oh, and Skyrim, The Witcher, M&B, and Dark Souls... all those are in our consideration as well, they're basically the universal standards of the RPG medium right now.

+6 votes     reply to comment
EPG_BlownKapz Jan 26 2014 replied:

Kingdome Come: Deliverance is from my understanding going for a very, very realistic combat experience, but that goes with a cost of some player freedom. Since all of their attacks and reactions to hits are predetermined, to allow for physically accurate swordfighting, it takes i.e. some movement freedom, since you will most likely be locked into position, in order not to mess up the animations. That said, I'm obviously no dev at Warhorse, this is all pire speculation. We are aiming at a different kind of combat, trying to find our own balance of realism and freedom.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Storander Jan 29 2014 replied:

Just curious, what is 9k2 compared to game maps like Morrowind?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Nuvendil Jan 29 2014 replied:

That's a bit larger than Skyrim. Thus much larger than Morrowind.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Epoch_MEB Jan 29 2014 replied:

Was Skyrim not 12km^2? I'm fairly sure it was 4 km X 3 km.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nuvendil Jan 30 2014 replied:

16km^2 . Around 4x4 once you factor in all the odd shapes and whatnot. Granted it is actually larger than that with interiors (Whcih are bigger than their exterior "shells").
But now that I look at his post, I must have misread it :S . Sorry. If 9k2=how you write 9km^2, then that's a bit smaller actually.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Gladius05 Feb 12 2014 replied:

Looking forward to your game.
Speaking of interiors/exteriors, will "Althas" have loading screens?

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nuvendil Feb 12 2014 replied:

Probably some. Seamless everything is still a tough thing to do, and not just for performance reasons. But we will have a lot fewer than most games like Skyrim.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Mirsh Jan 26 2014 says:

These look really cool.
Might we be able to join one of the clans with the choice influencing our playstyle?

Maybe it's just me but I feel the descriptions of their individual fighting styles kinda hints something like that.

+3 votes     reply to comment
bwils362# Jan 29 2014 says:

:O that concept art, just wow

+2 votes     reply to comment
Storander Jan 29 2014 says:

Great artwork, love the style!

+2 votes     reply to comment
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