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The Dawn of Shadows campaign is the main campaign of the game.  As of v1.0.0, this campaign features several dungeons, multiple bosses, and a world map to explore. This campaign has a time limit for completion, and though it is very generous time should not be wasted. There are 3 possible endings based on how close you are to reaching that time limit when (or if) you complete the campaign.

You can choose your character's race and class, and then play persistently with that character.

You start at your character's home, moving through some outdoor areas to then reach the Ethistos World Map.

Ethistos World Map

Travel on the Ethistos World Map takes a lot of time and food for every move (it's somewhere between 20 and 50 turns). Some squares, such as roads, allow quicker movement, while others like hills and jungle are more challenging. Every time you move through an area or stay in it, you explore a bit more and can reduce the cost of moving through it by a tiny amount. You cannot directly fight enemies on the World Map, but can be subject to random events as you move (such as damaging bandit attacks, finding food, or being given an exploration quest). Exploration quests are not recommended: you spend an enormous amount of time and food in one map square to explore it fully for some negligible reward. Travel through areas affected by Shadow will inflict damage on your character but is otherwise fine.

Warning: On the Ethistos World Map there are very few 'Gates' to prevent you from entering high-level areas. Hover your cursor over a Dungeon before you enter, and you will be given a summary of the threat level. Following the main quest is usually safe. But if an area says it 'Has much higher level enemies compared to the level of your character.' it will be dangerous in two ways: 1) Enemy types you have seen before will have much more health and do much more damage. 2) More dangerous enemy types will appear, who will more often have ranged attacks. Some of the most dangerous include elementals and druids with lightning attacks, and Liches who have an extraordinarily dangerous special attack.


There are three types of Dungeons in the Dawn of Shadows campaign:

Event Dungeons: On the World Map, certain Random Events will take you to a random Event Map. These are like Dungeons, but usually set outdoors (open area), and usually not too threatening/dangerous. Different areas on the World Map have different Random Event Maps, such as being attacked by a group of wolves. The main danger of these areas is that your character tends to appear in the middle of the area, and has to explore to find an exit. It is usually safest to move slowly towards the nearest edge of the map, killing everything as you move, then exploring from the outside in. Make sure you have everything you want from this area before exiting - you will return to the World Map and will not find that particular random map again, though you could trigger the same event again for a similar random map.

Fixed Dungeons: These always appear at the same location on the Ethistos World Map, and are usually part of the main campaign for Dawn of Shadows, along with a few others that are always present, such as two starter dungeons just West of the starting location, the Insectoid Kingdom in the middle of the southern jungle, and a few others. The difficulty of these dungeons is progressive, gradually getting stronger; so long as you do the whole campaign in order, the level of these zones should stay in line with your character. The main danger of these Dungeons are the Bosses, but the Bosses are also exceptionally rewarding for Artifacts and Ancient Runes.

Special Dungeons: These Dungeons are placed at random on the World Map when you begin a particular game. These areas are often much smaller than the Fixed Dungeons, but the difficulty can be far higher. Pay particular attention to the difficulty rating of the zone: if it says the level of the creatures is far higher than your character, you may be subject to a one-shot kill or an impossible fight, particularly if playing on Hard difficulty. Either avoid these entirely until it says the level is comparable, or enter cautiously and pay close attention to how much damage you are dealing and receiving from the first enemy you face. The first sign of trouble on one of these maps could be 100+ damage from an enemy you can't even see.


Ethistos features a few Town Areas, mostly accessible directly from the World Map. These areas are largely peaceful. Most characters in towns only provide flavor text, though there are a few Quest Givers for the main quest. The other notable feature is there is at least one merchant in these areas, though refreshing their store contents will quickly grow prohibitively expensive, since unlike the Magic Merchant there is only one Instance of each merchant.

Bonus Area (Spoilers Follow):

One of the most rewarding locations accessible early in the game is the Insectoid Kingdom, a Fixed Dungeon located in the middle of the jungle in the far South of Ethistos. This location is notable for 5 major reasons:

1) Defeating the Dungeon and successfully claiming the Insectoid throne opens the Insectoids as a playable race.

2) Defeating the Dungeon and successfully claiming the throne grants that particular character the Legendary General Ability "Call Insectoid Royal Guard" from the Shared Ability list. This is an excellent Panic Button Ability and though it has a long 864 turn cooldown, it is a truly excellent Summon.

3) Claiming the throne also makes every random Insectoid in every dungeon in the game becomes friendly, which can occasionally be useful in a tough area since you can draw enemies back to an Elite if you find one.

4) The Insectoid Royal Halls also have an exit into the mountains where you can enter the aptly named 'Endless Dungeon'. This is an infinite dungeon for infinite grinding, though difficulty climbs quickly. While you can't go back up floors in this dungeon, there are exits back to the World Map about every 6 levels. A good late game option for grinding.

5) Equipment Upgrades. The Insectoid Royal Halls also has 2 Anvils. If you drop a Weapon, Shield, Armor or Ring on one, then step back and move toward the occupied Anvil, you have the option to attempt to upgrade the item. If you succeed, the magic on it may be improved, or it may gain additional magic (to the limit of 2 glyphs and 2 max magic abilities). If you fail, either the item is destroyed, or the item survives but cannot be improved on that Anvil. Each Anvil may be used once for any given piece of equipment, allowing a max of 2 upgrades. While it may be unwise to use this on your best equipment, it is useful to hold on to lots of rings - even unenchanted ones! - and try to upgrade them here. Chance of success is 50% + Fate Bonus, where the fate bonus is something like 0.2% per Fate point. So it may be worth returning and taking more risks later when your Fate is above 100, and certainly you should use a Fate potion and equipment before using an Anvil.