Jump to content
ThomasCats

How Old is Avadon?

Recommended Posts

Hello, just starting off the Avadon series and I'm having a bit of trouble working out how old the fortress is.

The intro says you're sent to a new fortress, but then a couple of screens later says Avadon has been watching over the Pact for three centuries. Then later the Codex article on Keepers puts Redbeard at having been in charge for sixty years, with 25 years of the fortress before him, which places it as a bit under one century old. I'm inclined to follow this last one due to precision in the dates, but it's a little confusing.

Does anyone know if the confusion is just a mix up or is it a plot thing?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello ThomasCats,
 

I don’t think there’s any mixup! The lore regarding Avadon and the surrounding lands is pretty consistent, and you’ll start to see a little more solid evidence for Avadon’s age as you keep playing. Your third statement is the correct one, I think: the Black Fortress is a little less than a century old. There’s a slightly more accurate statement that you haven’t come across yet, but I’ll leave that for you to discover!
 

There are two different sources of confusion here, I think.
 

The first is a simple one: I think you’ve just misinterpreted a sentence slightly. The portion of the introduction you make reference to says this:
 

‘Your skill and potential has earned you the greatest of honors. You have been sent to serve at a new fortress ... Avadon.’
 

I appreciate that this is a little ambiguous! However, I believe this means that you have just been sent to a fortress that is new to you, rather than the fortress being new. In other words, you’ve previously been working at another fortress, and now you’re moving to Avadon. It’s a little like saying you’ve gotten a ‘new job’. The job isn’t new, but you having the job is!
 

The second source of confusion comes from some slightly ambiguous terminology. The second age you mentioned comes from this statement:
 

‘Avadon has watched over the Pact for three centuries.’
 

Note that it says Avadon, rather than the Black Fortress.
 

This is open to interpretation but, so far as I understand it, ‘Avadon’ in this context is being used in a slightly broader sense than its true meaning (the fortress itself). Here, ‘Avadon’ is referring to whatever power was ruling over the Pact at the time. For a lot of that time, the governing force was Hanvar’s Council. So, in that context, Hanvar’s Council was ‘Avadon’. The physical building of Avadon only came later, when the word became associated the Black Fortress. That’s my interpretation, in any case. In other words, the statement is just saying that some body or other has ruled over the Pact for three centuries.
 

So, there are three timescales here. The Pact has been ruled over for three centuries. Avadon, the Black Fortress, has been around for a little less than a century. And you are new!
 

Speaking of newness, since I haven’t had the chance to do this yet, welcome to the forums! Enjoy your time working for the Black Fortress!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Thank you, I've just got to the big library and read the books on the Three Ages, so that must account for the three centuries thing. I'm sure I'll pick up more over time, anyway, must run, Jennel's in trouble in Khemeria, the Beraza Woods issue might finally be settled, the lower dungeons need looking at, as do the library stacks, and I have some dangerous dragon diplomacy to get round to at some point!

Edited by ThomasCats

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Ess-Eschas said:

the Black Fortress is a little less than a century old

 

That might be technically true, but if so it was built on the ruins of a previous fortress

 

(spoiler is about something that you 'will' encounter later as you move through the Avadon series & is more a minutia type of thing.  So read if you want or better, come back here after keeping my above statement in mind as you're exploring...)

 

Spoiler

Given that in one of the editions you go down to the dungeons, & then down DEEP into the bowels and wind up meeting Redbeard in the burial chamber of previous Keepers (of which there were a dozen or so coffins).  Some of the previous Keepers may have had short tenures, but if they each ruled for 10-20 years on average, that would put the age of the Chamber back a couple/few hundred years (at a minimum) prior to the BF. (true, Redbeard may have had all the remains moved from a prior fortress to entomb them there...but I doubt he'd do that)

 

So the Black Fortress itself may only be a century or so old, but the location of it seems to have been of strategic importance to Avadon/prior to them rulers of the region over the years & was a place of central power

 

(I wonder how often Jeff needs a laugh & browses the forums just to see how seriously some of us take the continuity of the various worlds he's built...)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, TriRodent said:

(I wonder how often Jeff needs a laugh & browses the forums just to see how seriously some of us take the continuity of the various worlds he's built...)

 

Jeff is busy with the Geneforge 1 remake, so he usually doesn't browse the forums. Whenever he does show up and post it is shocking.

 

Continuity, Jeff doesn't care about continuity. Dragons change sex, continents disappear, different NPCs have the same names, …..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, TriRodent said:

That might be technically true, but if so it was built on the ruins of a previous fortress

 

That’s not the case, I’m afraid, although I can see why it would be possible to come to that conclusion! It’s a pretty natural assumption to make, and one I’ve been tempted to make myself! However, the games themselves present a slightly different picture.

 

Spoiler

The scene you describe is in Avadon 1. You descend to the lowest parts of the fortress, which look older than the areas you’ve travelled through thus far. That’s because they are the oldest parts of the fortress – they were just built first! They aren’t the ruins of an earlier building.
 

This is something confirmed by Redbeard himself. When you enter the crypt, you meet him, and he discusses the place with you. In fact, it’s this conversation that I was alluding to in my previous post – in it, Redbeard gives a pretty clear statement of Avadon’s age.
 

In Redbeard’s own words:
 

“All the lasting Keepers since the first days of the Black Fortress are kept here.”
 

Note that this implies that the Keepers did not exist until the Black Fortress was built, and therefore that this crypt could not have existed before the present Fortress existed. Therefore, the crypt was not part of an earlier fortress.
 

Your argument, which is a nice one by the way, states that there are several coffins of previous Keepers in the crypt. This is true. The argument fails in your next assumption: the average time a Keeper is in post. Redbeard talks about this too. He states that the majority of Keepers don’t even make it to 40 days in post, never mind years. The coffins are for the only Keepers that passed the 40 day milestone, and even they didn’t last long. According to the codex, only 2 previous Keepers kept the post for any significant period of time – and they racked up only about 13 years between them. This is one reason why Redbeard is so special – he’s outlasted all the other Keepers put together, and many times over!


Otherwise, I think Randomizer might be being a touch harsh here! In some of the early Spiderweb games, there were a few inconsistencies relating to little details that changed a little between games. Some can be easily explained away with a little world-building. Perhaps the dragons changed gender because they chose to do so? Or maybe adventurers are just bad at figuring out the gender of a dragon.
 

In any case, the recent games are much tighter on these points, and especially Avadon. Part of the conceit of Avadon is that it is set in a highly detailed, complex world – and that’s hard to pull off if the lore gets wonky!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: hidden lore.

 

Ok, that makes sense.  I was just going off of a somewhat remembered side trip in a game I played (a few times) years ago.

 

Spoiler
6 hours ago, Ess-Eschas said:

The scene you describe is in Avadon 1. You descend to the lowest parts of the fortress, which look older than the areas you’ve travelled through thus far. That’s because they are the oldest parts of the fortress – they were just built first! They aren’t the ruins of an earlier building.

 

The problem that I have with that timeline is how forts tend to be built.  Generally the defensive needs of a fort are the prime reason for building one, protecting one from outside forces.  The idea of them digging out 5-6 levels of sub-basements before building the fort...yeah, hard to buy that one (especially if you factor in the chaos of getting a new leader every few weeks).  Not saying that you're wrong (especially with Redbeard explaining things), just that the optic generated doesn't really match the lore given.

 

And yes I know Jeff doesn't come to the forums very often (usually only on the launch of a new game & essentially never in an old game forum - but the point was the humor value of some of us taking how things run in his assorted created universes so seriously.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmm, that’s a very good point, TriRodent. I’d not thought about that! As presented, that setup is a little stranger than I’d given it credit for!
 

Spoiler

Who knows? Perhaps you’re right, and Redbeard is lying to us?
 

After all, all we really have to go on is his word, and the text of the codex. It strikes me that, if Redbeard wanted to change the written history, perhaps in his favour, he could probably do so fairly easily ...
 

Of course, that line of reasoning quickly starts falling down a rabbit hole. After all, how much do we really know about the Avadon universe, particularly if we can’t rely on our sources of information? :)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
Spoiler

The victor rewriting history?  Let me show you my shocked face....

 

(especially when said victor has been ruler for probably more than 1.5x the average lifespan in that fairly violent land... (and if he's directing what's in the history books, and ruthlessly suppressing any alternate versions, within a generation or three, what really happened would be reasonably fuzzy in most minds))

 

Ah well, time to get back to the weirdness of this timeline out in the meat world.  Avadon/s was/were far down on the list of SW games that I really liked - this little discussion though has piqued my interest enough to probably go revisit them once again.  So thanks, I think. Regardless, this has been a fun 'what if'

 

Edited by TriRodent
Edit because I was dumb & forgot to mention that the 'spoiler' was for E-E

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, & ThomasCats,  the spoiler filled discussion that E-E & I were having was about things that you will discover in Avadon 1 (again, keeping in mind my initial comment, you'll know it when you get to it).  So feel free to come back to see just what generated such a fuss...one never quite knows where things will drift off to around here...

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...