Lore:Plains of Koth
The Plains of Koth (also known as Koth) are a wilderness area located in the Ice Mountains region. It is a taiga area located at the base of a mountain range. The area is named after General Marcus Koth, one of King Philander's most powerful warriors.
The Plains of Koth are a haunting location as it was ground zero for a mass scale necromancy spell cast by the ancient King Philander to make his armies immortal. To this day, undead creatures roam the plains unaware that the war they fight is long over.
A trail of colossal, monstrous footprints led across the width of the plain, stopping just before the mountain range that leads to Ice Palace. A scar by the creature known as Cerberus. However, in the years since, these footprints have become part of the terrain, now with vegetation growing in them - some of them filled with water creating small lakes.
The plains were the site of an ancient battle over the control of Fort Rose, a strategic landmark for Dactylus during the Khatt-Dactylus War. The Khatt-Gorl Empire had sent forth nigh-unstoppable demonic beasts known as the Ifrit Lions. Their fiery breaths and diamond-tipped claws slaughtered Dactylus troops by the thousands. The current ruler of Dactylus, King Philander, cared a lot for his people and did not want to sacrifice any more troops to ease the burden on the number of grieving families. Thus, Philander chose to counter the Ifrit Lions by calling upon the dark magic of Zampos.
Using the forbidden spells of necromancy, he reanimated his deceased soldiers - thus, replenishing his armies but at the cost of forfeiting their right to a peaceful afterlife. These undead warriors were functionally immortal, being brought back to life again and again each time they died even if their corpses were mutilated and mauled. Day by day as their flesh rotted, they eventually became skeletons.
It was soon discovered that the undead armies were not enough to repel Khatt-Gorl's unrelenting forces. As the battle carried on, the Khatt-Gorls sent forth a deadly, gigantic beast from the Underground. This was Cerberus, the three-headed dog. Cerberus had pushed through Fort Rose completely and headed straight for the Dactylus capital, leaving behind fiery footprints. Desperate and out of options, King Philander resorted to summoning dark clouds in the sky that blocked the sun, creating a winter that lasted 100 years. The entirety of Koth was buried in snow, completely freezing over the area. Cerberus was repelled by the blizzards, and he returned to the Underground. However, Dactylus entered a long period of hardship and starvation.
The war ultimately ended in a pyrrhic victory for Dactylus, but they were left with thousands of undead warriors who could not move on to the next world, still driven by bloodlust and grief. Khatt-Gorl's soldiers were also affected - the Darkseer warriors sent into battle suffered from the same curse as the Dactylus and became phantoms.
King Philander would die of an illness caused by the very winter he created. However, he was afflicted by the same curse he had put on his armies. As a result, he was denied the afterlife and was forced to remain behind as a ghost, watching his kingdom crumble away.
Two thousand years after the battle, dark magic continues to reanimate the fallen soldiers who still fight one another as if the battle never ended. Despite this, because of the large deposits of ancient relics and treasures in the area, many adventurers, thieves and bandits are drawn to the area to continue to fight over the spoils of the ruined land.