Friday, November 8, 2013

Dragon Age Origins - Anselm's Reef / Windswept Shore

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Fantasy game art from Dragon Age: Origins Ultimate Edition (Dragon Age: Origins, the Awakening expansion, and all official Downloadable Content).

The Windwept Shore is a location from the Leliana's Song DLC (Downloadable Content), a short story played separately from the main story in Dragon Age: Origins. A variation on this location is featured in the Awakening expansion, where it is called Anselm's Reef.

Campfire Legends: The Hookman - Scenes

Game art from Campfire Legends: The Hookman.


Dungeon Siege II - Combat Magic

Fantasy game art from Dungeon Siege II.

Combat Magic in Dungeon Siege II was considerably changed from the original Dungeon Siege. There are far fewer spells, and many interesting spells were discarded. However, the revised list is thematically stronger, and players didn't really miss much after the vastly improved visuals were added.
The themes of Combat Magic are Fire, Lightning, Death magic, Curses, and Summoning creatures that use ranged magic attacks. As you get to summon some pretty demonic-looking creatures and curse opponents with a variety of effects, Combat Magic could be considered "dark magic", but they backed off from calling it this in Dungeon Siege (although there are references to it as "dark magic" in the source code), and didn't try it in Dungeon Siege II either.


Combat Magic Skills

  • Brilliance: Through intense introspection, adventurers may extend their mind beyond physical constraints, vastly multiplying their capacity for magical energies.
  • Devastation: Combat Magic is an exercise in precision. The more accurate a mage's motions and the more practiced his incantations, the more energy and destruction he can channel into his attacks.
  • Debilitation: There is power in disease and decay. Mages who study it risk their health and sanity, but learn to inflict crippling curses on their foes.
  • Searing Flames: Convectus the Red spent a lifetime communing with Lava Spirits and learning the secrets of the inner flame. His students are still famous for the intensity of their fire magic.
  • Amplified Lightning: Dwarven mages were known to revel in the power of conducting electrical energy. They had to develop techniques to increase how much of it their bodies could withstand.
  • Summon Alacrity: Mages who study this skill can accelerate the metabolism of the creatures they summon and agitate them to a frenzy, drastically increasing their attack rate.
  • Grim Necromancy: Practitioners of this discipline commune with dark forces and master spells that tear the life out of their enemies. Many mages wonder if any end is worth such means.
  • Quickened Casting: When the legendary archer Alamus became too old to string his bow, he sought a new life in magic and learned that principles of battle meditation could drastically increase the rate of his casting.
  • Vampirism: While most death mages are content with the ability to tear the life force from their victims, some have secretly learned to channel some of that stolen vitality into their own restoration.
  • Ignite: No one can truly say they have bested a mage trained in these arts, as the lingering flames continue to burn deeply long after the battle is over, and the unmistakable scars will always tell the tale.
  • Arcane Fury: Overexposure to elemental channeling often results in the mage becoming a conduit for the raw power of mana itself, which, though painful, can greatly increase the intensity of their attacks.
  • Arcing: It is said that the mage who created the Galeblade was capable of channeling so much energy into his lightning spells that arcs of it sometimes jumped from his primary target to other nearby foes.

Combat Magic Powers

  • Energy Orb: The Elven mage Arinth could summon a ball of energy that hovered above him and shot fire at his enemies. He later perfected it, learning to weave additional types of energy into the orb.
  • Flame Nexus: Convectus the Red communed with Lava Spirits, learning to summon and launch them as weapons in battle. The Spirit gleefully reaches out with tendrils of fire to burn any nearby enemies.
  • Detonation: The greatest power of the fire mage is a dangerous weapon. The mage recklessly gathers more energy than he can control, releasing it in a massive conflagration that burns his enemies.
  • Corrosive Eruption: Enemies caught within this noxious cloud are infected by gasses that rot them from the inside out. Corrosive fumes violently erupt from victims when they die, burning and poisoning nearby foes.
  • Harvest Soul: A deadly attack invented by the vilest mages in history, this dark ritual creates a gigantic scythe that cuts away the life force of the mage's enemies, allowing his allies to absorb it and heal themselves.
  • Chain Lightning: A favored attack of young Combat Mages, Chain Lightning hurls a bolt of lightning that shocks the nearest enemy then jumps to other nearby foes. The bolt deals reduced damage with each jump.
  • Gathered Bolt: The mage gradually builds up a massive electrical charge on the ground, causing a tremendous bolt of lightning to crash down, devastating all enemies it hits.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Dragon Age Origins - Amaranthine

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Fantasy game art from Dragon Age: Origins Ultimate Edition (Dragon Age: Origins, the Awakening expansion, and all official Downloadable Content).

Toward the end of the story arc in the Awakening expansion, the Warden must lift the Darkspawn siege on the city of Amaranthine.
Locations in Amaranthine itself include an underground route leading from an abandoned building outside the city walls into Smuggler's Cove and up into the Crown and Lion Inn.



Campfire Legends: The Hookman

Game art from Campfire Legends: The Hookman.


Dungeon Siege II - Nature Magic

Fantasy game art from Dungeon Siege II.

Nature Magic in Dungeon Siege II was considerably changed from the original Dungeon Siege. There are far fewer spells, and many interesting spells were discarded. However, the revised list is thematically stronger, and players didn't really miss much after the vastly improved visuals were added.
The themes of Nature Magic are Healing; Ice; "Buffs" (beneficial enchantments or boons); Summoning creatures that engage in hand-to-hand combat; and inflicting "magic" damage, a rather poorly described type of damage that is vaguely defined as "magical". The "Ripple" spells, which create a local distortion that harms foes, is an example of such magic, and very few creatures have a resistance to it.


Nature Magic Skills

  • Natural Bond: Dryads share an instinctive affinity with all living things. They can cast spells using less of their mana by drawing from the life force of their surroundings. They have also learned to create mana potions from certain plants.
  • Aquatic Affinity: Nature Mages cultivate a shamanistic bond with water, the life blood of the world. They channel its strength for both healing and offense.
  • Summon Fortitude: Dryad summoners are taught to respect the companions they call and are constantly developing methods to increase their creatures' ability to survive in combat.
  • Enveloping Embrace: The essence of hardwoods and vines, known for their ability to endure, is often invoked by empathic mages who wish to strengthen their protective Embrace spells, which protect their party in battle.
  • Arctic Mastery: Rimen the White spent half his life in self-imposed exile in the frozen north. He learned ways to combine water and air magic to make all manner of ice do his bidding.
  • Summon Might: Elves discovered that magic could be woven around the teeth and claws of summoned creatures to create an effect not unlike the tempering of steel. Though short-lived, it proved quite effective.
  • Feral Wrath: The dangerous, wild essence of thorns, nettles, and cacti can be harnessed by skilled mages to magnify the potency of their offensive Wrath enchantments, which increase their party's strength.
  • Nurturing Gift: Shamans that focus on the restorative arts can eventually wield healing magic that is nothing short of miraculous in its effectiveness.
  • Arcane Renewal: Through study and meditation, Nature Mages can draw on reserves normally out of reach. This increased flow of energy revitalizes the mage and restores his most powerful abilities.
  • Freezing: The ice magic of Nature Mages can be honed to freeze the moisture in the air around their enemies into immobilizing blocks of ice.
  • Summon Bond: The bond between the mage and a summoned creature can be strengthened to the point that the creature will trade its own life force to absorb damage dealt to the mage who called it.
  • Absorption: Nature Mages of legend were so attuned to magical energy that they could absorb a portion of magical attacks and use it to restore their mana. It is said the Dryads still hold this secret.

Nature Magic Powers

  • Gravity Stone: The mage summons a monolithic stone of such density that its gravitational force pulls enemy creatures toward it and holds them in place until it collapses under itself.
  • Icicle Blast: A deadly attack inspired by the North Dragon's breath, Icicle Blast launches shards of ice from the caster's fingers in a fan of destruction, knocking enemies back and blasting them with cold.
  • Circle of Frost: Circle of Frost banishes all heat from an area. The ground cracks as moisture turns to ice, the very air freezes, and any creature unlucky enough to be caught in the circle is frozen until it thaws.
  • Summon Provoke: With an Agallan rhyme, the mage provokes enemies around himself to focus their wrath upon his summoned creature. Once provoked, monsters won't always respond to additional provocation.
  • Aether Blast: Aether Blast channels a spike of magical energy through the mage's link with his summoned creature, creating a devastating explosion. The more powerful the creature, the more deadly the blast.
  • Invulnerability: The most powerful defensive magic a Nature Mage can possess, Invulnerability protects the party so completely that no physical or magical attack can harm them.
  • Glacial Aura: Nature Mages of frozen mountains can focus glacial power around themselves, creating an aura that emits waves of frost that damage and briefly freeze any enemies who draw near.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Dragon Age Origins - Aeducan Thaig / Ruined Thaig

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Fantasy game art from Dragon Age: Origins Ultimate Edition (Dragon Age: Origins, the Awakening expansion, and all official Downloadable Content).

The Aeducan Thaig (called a Ruined Thaig during the Dwarven Noble origin story) features prominently during the Warden's quest to secure an alliance with the dwarves.

Dawn of War: SoulStorm expansion

Game art from Warhammer 40K: Dawn Of War, Soulstorm expansion



WH40K SoulStorm intro by Fantasy_Art


WH40K SoulStorm campaign intro by Fantasy_Art

Dungeon Siege II - Ranged Combat

Fantasy game art from Dungeon Siege II.

Ranged combat became much more interesting in Dungeon Siege II not just with the introduction of throwing knives and chakrams, but with the introduction of the passive skill and active skill (powers) structure. Combined with spectacular visual effects, choosing a warrior no longer meant watching monotonous-looking combat. Odd effects occasionally occur because of scripting: For example, if a target moves while an arrow lauched by a Power is already in flight, the arrow's trajectory will adjust so that it will still hit the target.



Ranged Combat Skills

  • Critical Shot: Skilled adventurers practice a form of battle meditation, focusing their mind and allowing them to occasionally strike vulnerable areas, dealing twice-normal damage with any ranged weapon.
  • Dodge: Dryad hunters look with some amusement upon all the armor warriors wear to survive an attack. They feel it's best to simply move out of the way.
  • Biting Arrow: When a student of archery chooses to master the bow and crossbow, his battle meditation takes on a new purpose. His arrows seem propelled by unseen winds and strike with thunderous force.
  • Quick Draw: A Dryad hunter's training is considered complete only when she can accurately throw three daggers in the space of a single breath.
  • Far Shot: It is said that the archers of the Elven town of Haelea can put an arrow through the eye of a foe that is barely visible on the horizon. Archers have traveled there for generations to learn their secrets.
  • Bleed: Thrown weapon masters prefer to get close to their targets so they can aim at major veins and arteries. An accurate strike causes their target to bleed away health for several seconds after the attack.
  • Survival: Since their travels take them far from home, rangers train to survive long periods in the wild. They develop a resistance to extreme weather and learn to distill certain berries and fruits into health potions.
  • Shockwave: A master archer can cause damaging shockwaves when his arrows travel a certain distance. Scholars wonder if the ability is magical or not, but archers who rely on it only care that it is useful.
  • Penetrate: The ranger Lyssa could shoot an arrow or throw a knife that would pass through three blocks of wood before striking its target. Her enemies feared experiencing her skill firsthand.
  • Cunning Renewal: Thrown weapon masters dive into battle with reckless abandon. They all relish the rush of danger and adrenaline, but only the greatest know how to channel that rush into restoring their skills.
  • Mortal Wound: There is no special secret to striking an enemy's most vulnerable point, but it requires tremendous focus, meditation, and experience. An archer who perfects it is regarded as a legend in his own time.
  • Ricochet: Foes facing the Dryad chakram-master Kaara never knew whether her next attack would come directly from her hand or from a chakram bouncing off one of their own comrades.

Ranged Combat Powers

  • Take Aim: Dryad archers conceal themselves to surprise their enemies, but their first shot reveals their position. They learn to focus their concentration and take careful aim, making their next shot as devastating as possible.
  • Thunderous Shot: A thunderous arrow or crossbow bolt travels faster than the eye can see, punching through all enemies in its path and leaving them stunned. Azunai's archers turned many battles with this attack.
  • Silence: Azunai's armies relied on Dalziel, one of the Champions of the Northern Reaches, to destroy Zaramoth's mages. Dalziel's hatred of their magic manifested as an ability to silence them temporarily, preventing them from casting spells.
  • Charged Shots: Elves have a talent for magic, so it is no surprise that their rangers discovered how to charge their arrows with magic. For a short time, every enemy they hit is also struck by lightning.
  • Shrapnel Blast: When this thrown weapon strikes a target, a blast shatters it into many pieces that fly in all directions. Stories of a single ranger defeating a crowd of foes are often tales of this power in action.
  • Repulse: The Crimson Hunter Laethel liked to get close to his enemies, but developed this ability to survive when they got too close. Repulse knocks enemies away from the ranger and stuns them.
  • Flurry: Elven adventurers learn to focus their strength into a burst of energy, temporarily allowing them to throw multiple weapons at a rapid rate; but the increase in speed comes at the cost of accuracy.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Dragon Age Origins - Abandoned Orphanage

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Fantasy game art from Dragon Age: Origins Ultimate Edition (Dragon Age: Origins, the Awakening expansion, and all official Downloadable Content).

The Abandoned Orphanage is a haunted building in the Elven Alienage in Denerim.

Dawn of War

Game art from Warhammer 40K: Dawn Of War.


Dungeon Siege II - Melee Combat

Fantasy game art from Dungeon Siege II.

Hand-to-hand and missile combat became much more interesting in Dungeon Siege II compared with the original Dungeon Siege, with the introduction of the passive skill and active skill (powers) structure. Combined with spectacular visual effects, choosing a warrior no longer meant watching monotonous-looking combat. Dual wielding weapons is especially neat to watch, with its acrobatic leaps and spins that make it look like something out of a kung-fu movie.


Melee Combat Skills
  • Fortitude: Ancient Half-Giant warriors developed grueling training regimens to toughen their bodies, allowing them to withstand an unnatural amount of punishment.
  • Critical Strike: Using techniques developed by Elven masters, skillful warriors can occasionally slip their weapons through weaknesses in their enemies' defenses, dealing double damage with a single attack.
  • Barricade: The training of Snowbrook Haven elite knights teaches them to wield their shields with unparalleled strength and tenacity. Phalanxes of knights can turn away nearly any attack.
  • Overbear: Warriors who have mastered this skill can channel all their rage and anger into their attacks, adding huge power to every devastating two-handed blow.
  • Dual Wield: Elven warriors have long known techniques for wielding melee weapons in both hands. They require strength, coordination, and a reckless mindset willing to sacrifice defense for an extra blade.
  • Toughness: Tales tell of a Half-Giant wanderer who could survive in any climate and shrug off many attacks entirely. He taught his secrets to those he met on his journeys, and they live on long after he has disappeared.
  • Alacrity: Gifted Elven Blademasters can harness the wind itself to hasten their attacks. Masters of this skill appear to be no more than a blur as they cut through their opponents.
  • Reinforced Armor: The soldiers of Windstone Fortress learned to modify their armor to enhance its effectiveness and often emerged unscathed from even the most catastrophic battles.
  • Smite: In the days after the cataclysm, a roaming band of barbarians used focused attacks from two-handed weapons to stun prey. Would-be thieves discovered they were equally effective on human opponents.
  • Fierce Renewal: Berserkers are always on the verge of flying into a blinding rage. They do not see this as a liability, but use their anger to recover from their most powerful attacks more quickly than normal.
  • Rebuke: The final stage in the training of Snowbrook Haven elite soldiers is learning to use their shield as a weapon, striking back at those whose attacks they block and knocking them senseless.
  • Deadly Strike: Expert warriors learn to take every opportunity they can, as each could be their last. Whenever Elven Blademasters breach their enemies' defenses, the strike is incredibly devastating.
Melee Combat Powers
  • Brutal Attack: Though originated by Half-Giant warriors, many warriors learn this technique. Focusing all their strength into their next attack, fighters deal massive damage with a single, brutal strike.
  • Provoke: Knights protect their allies by using their shields to provoke nearby enemies, causing them to become angry and attack the knight. The knight's concentration also temporarily increases his armor.
  • Whirling Strike: A legendary fighter known only as the Tempest of Tel'kilae originated this technique, in which the fighter whirls his weapons in a circle, damaging and briefly stunning all nearby enemies.
  • Staggering Blow: When a two-handed weapon master activates this ability, his next attack will be a Staggering Blow. He slams his weapon into his target, creating a shockwave that stuns any enemies caught within it.
  • War Cry: Barbarians of the Plain of Tears can unleash a deafening war cry, energizing themselves and terrifying their enemies, causing them to run in fear and leave their defenses open for a short time.
  • Waves of Force: A student of Elven dual-weapon techniques learns to perform a beautiful sequence of rapid swings, each creating a wave of force that rushes out in front of her, tearing apart enemies caught in its wake.
  • Elemental Rage: The highest art of the Elven Blademaster is a meditative frenzy that causes elemental energy to manifest in his weapons and speeds his attacks. Ignoring his own defense, he leaps into battle.