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- "Persephone and James will be on the offensive. It falls upon me, therefore, to be ready to counter any assaults Pyro or Charnel attempt. You could be particularly useful in this regard." – Stratos, Shadow of the Past (Intermission)
- Mission Giver: Stratos
- Location: Elmekia
- Map Creator: David Msika
- New Spell: Chain Lightning
- New Creature: Storm Giant
To deliver a soul, simply stand near the highlighted ruin and souls will start to disappear from your possession (and into Stratos's possession). You are not obliged to actually do this.
Keeping the Silverbacks alive really shouldn't be a problem. They are big, strong and resilient, but if you're concerned that one might die simply heal them if injured. Do NOT, however try to use one of them for desecration of Acheron's altar. That will count as a death and you'll lose the mission.
- It was not long before report came of Charnel's attack on Elmekia. I set out immediately to assist in its defense. – Eldred
Shakti and Elmekia
Stratos thinks that Elysium needs protection and that he would be ideal for the job. So he sends you to help defend one of Persephone's lands that is currently under attack by the forces of Charnel, led by his champion Acheron. What's more, the land in question is the newly adopted homeland of Shakti, a mystic who will be assisting you this mission.
At the beginning of this mission, Shakti will approach you and (since you're the better wizard) will ask you which tactic should you two proceed with. You have two options: either that she defends the center or that she attacks Acheron with you. If you're thinking of collecting the 24 souls you most definitely shouldn't take her with you because she'll try to take Acheron's souls. If you want to end this quickly have her help you and crush Acheron together. After you've chosen you will have your encounter with Ashur.
Regardless of what you choose, you'll be given the opportunity to gather souls from the locals. Once you take the two manaliths in front of your altar head to a hill with a village on it. In the village you'll find six peasants that nobody will mind should you decide to kill them (don't try to kill them with the chain lightning, it's a waste of a good spell). After that a Netherfiend and two Necryls will attack the village, so that's another six souls (they belong to Acheron, so try to convert them quickly). After that, if you've converted all of the aforementioned creatures, your total soul count (including those of the creatures you're given at the beginning of the mission) should be 23, so if you want you can just steal a couple of souls from Acheron and give them all to Stratos.
He doesn't have any special creatures with him. He mostly summons Locusts (against which your chain lightning should work very nicely), with a couple of Scythes and an occasional Blight. At the start of the mission he'll also have a Netherfiend and a couple of Necryls. If you fight him alone he might prove to be a bit of a challenge and Shakti will also be able to defend herself quite well on her own (but do help her if she has been overwhelmed somehow). From the center (the manalith which Shakti will be defending) there are two manaliths to Acheron's altar (one of which could be taken by Shakti if she's attacking), so the road to his desecration is not that long.
If you want to get the boon and a certain way to win this mission, just collect the 24 souls for Stratos and don't mind anything else. A minute or so after you give them away (8000 frames), a grand total of six Silverbacks, Stratos's titans, will appear at your altar. You then receive the extra objective to not let them die. However this objective is trivial because with the Silverbacks in your command, you'll receive no opposition whatsoever from Acheron. If you're having trouble collecting the 24 souls, here are some tips for gathering:
- When starting the mission, order Shakti to "hold the center", as otherwise she may banish Acheron before you're done gathering.
- The small village ahead and to your right has several inhabitants, including hostile Charnel creatures to convert.
- If all else fails, just kill some of Shakti's guardian creatures while she's busy fighting Acheron and convert them before she comes back to reclaim them.
The boon benefactor for this mission is Stratos. He gives you the boon if you've completed the optional objective. He is pleased that the new silverbacks will be an additional help to convince Persephone to entrust her lands to his care (later you'll see why).
You don't receive the boon by delivering the 24 souls, but rather when the six Silverbacks appear. If you win the mission after you have delivered the souls, but before the Silverbacks appear you won't receive the boon.
The karma boost for this boon is as follows:
Bugs, Notes and Trivia
- If, when giving the 24th soul to Stratos, you have additional souls, they might start disappearing as well during the cinematic.
- If you have exactly 24 souls (including your creatures), you can't kill all your own creatures to send all 24 souls to Stratos. Zyzyx will object that you still have a battle to fight when you try to send the last soul.
- 6 Silverbacks actually cost 30, not 24, souls to summon.
- At the start of the mission, you'll receive mana income from Shakti's manaliths.
- On the map of the world, Elmekia is placed at the same location as Telluria, even though the layouts of the two islands are different.
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