the artistry and psychology of gaming


Sektra Swamp (Drakken 2: Dragon View)

Sektra Swamp (Drakken 2: Dragon View)

There was a land on the same planet as Drakkhen.  Presiding over it were the very same dragon gods, though no Drakkhens were present.  This land was far more populous, but humans were still relegated to a few villages across the land, so the strong feelings of desolation are still present here.  The land is filled mostly with plains, but there also exist a desert, a swamp, an area nearly engulfed in flame, a snowfield, and a perpetually rainy mountain, each beautiful in its own right.

The Sektra Swamp is a bit like the swamp in the land of Drakkhen; the terrain is a bit uneven, so there are many strangely shaped lakes.  Unlike the aforementioned wetland, however, Sektra’s land is far more permeated with water, and its skies are a bit more dingy.  While the land is still fairly open, it feels quite a bit more like a swamp.  It is a bit strange that this swamp is adjacent to a barren desert, but perhaps what causes the violent shift in biomes is a difference in soil consistency.

Upon entry, a traveler is greeted by dark green ground and dim, blue-gray skies.  There are roads of dark brown and lakes of a darker blue-gray scattered all about.  The ground itself is littered with small shrubs, rocks, and thin trees with branches thick with leaves.  The twisted shapes of the thin arbor make lovely silhouettes in the distance of such a place; a feature that I feel makes a swamp so special in the first place.  Aside from three small entrances and an outlet to the ocean, the entire area is surrounded by green rock walls that look oddly pinkish-gray from a distance.

Though I’ve always been more a fan of scenery than sightseeing, there are a few notable locations in Sektra.  The town of Orusort is tucked away along the northern edge of the swamp, just west of the entrance to the desert.  Said entrance is a narrow rock corridor, which is rich in Jade, the land’s currency.  For this reason, Orusort thrives due to its mining industry, which also explains its location.  It’s really not a bad place to visit; a typical mining town.

The other main site of interest is the Sektra Temple, a large shrine constructed in the honor of four of the eight dragon gods.  The temple itself is completely surrounded by water, so only those deemed worthy by the gods themselves may enter.  There is a dark brown spot upon the land, which will produce a pink bridge of light for the chosen, so that they may enter.  The temple itself is complex, and filled with shallow water.

There are also numerous caverns within the rock walls surrounding the area.  Some of these are large, sprawling complexes, such as the Jade Mine, while others are small chambers carved out of the side of the surrounding mountains.  There are also a few hollowed-out trees, which serve as entrances to subterranean dwellings for a few hermits.  Two of the most unusual features of the area, though, are a ground marking that resembles a compass in dark brown and sky blue, and a set of three glowing blue triangles upon the ground.  While the compass-like feature is a warp point that takes travelers near the Lake Cave in the plains, the other marking’s purpose is far more mysterious.  It is said that to activate it, one must find a mystical mirror and hold it aloft while standing upon it.  All I could sense was a strong electrical energy beneath me when I stood upon it; perhaps the spot had been struck by lightning.

Sektra is truly a large and special place; a swamp that epitomizes what I think of when the biome is mentioned.  I know not why murky swamps with cloudy skies hold such a special place in my memories, but just thinking of such a damp and dismal place is enough to make me want to go swimming through the murk.  It may be the familiar feeling of a summer that was filled with rain, or the warm rapture of a memory just out of reach of my conscious thought.  It might even be that my subconscious mind is looking for something buried within a forgotten memory, coercing me onward to see if it can be recovered by way of association.  Whatever it is, I’ll always be among the few who love the cold, damp darkness of an open wetland.

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