Mad King Thorn

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The Mad King has returned! Long live the king!

— Mad King Thorn

Mad King Oswald Thorn was a human monarch who ruled Kryta in the ninth century AE, famed for his lethal lunacy, which he kept up after his death when he returned as the powerful spirit of Halloween.


As a young man, Prince Oswald was a prolific prankster and troublemaker, and was responsible for the deaths of both Serene and Samson through negligence, but as a second son he was not expected to ascend to the throne. Nevertheless he schemed his way to the throne, murdering his well-liked elder brother Prince Ewan and later, his father (but not before taking his brother's betrothed, Lady Lyrica, as his wife, and having her assassinated).

The reign of King Thorn was nasty, brutish, and short. His first act as king was to execute Lord Humphrey Faren for accusing him of murdering his father, declaring all traitors would be punished without delay. Early in his reign, Krytan King Thorn proposed a treaty to the centauran tribes, but the centaurs rejected its terms as unfavorable. Later, famine and drought struck Kryta, but the high taxes drove some peasants to theft and others to starvation. King Thorn rounded up all citizens who were even suspected of theft and cut off their hands. He kidnapped Seamarshal Bennu, the father of the Istani Princess Zola and ransomed him for her hand in marriage, but had her executed when he grew tired of her, sparking a war with Istan (in which Kryta was ultimately victorious).

He had eight wives in total; the other known wives include Estrella, who was killed by Oswald when he put her in a coffin full of rats and dumped it into the sea, and Henrietta, who was killed by his heir, Prince Edrick. There was also Edrick's mother, whose name is still unknown, who was beheaded on his birthday. Oswald viewed his son to be a disappointment, and after a failed coup attempt on the final night of his rule, stuffed his son's mouth with candy corn and had him locked in the Shell of Insanity.

His tyranny came to an end in approximately 825 AE when an angry mob stormed Castle Thorn, ending his earthly rule. The rebels intended to kill his eighth wife and son as well during the assault, ending the Thorn dynasty, and beseech his cousin to take the throne and plead forgiveness. Worried that he would try to return using his magic, his killers hid his body parts in boxes and buried them in locations scattered across Tyria, obscuring their locations with magical seals.

Although unable to return to Tyria due to the seals (except at Halloween, at which he would make an annual appearance), Thorn rose to notoriety within the Underworld, coming to rule a sub-realm of his own. In 1079 AE, the ascension of Queen Salma to the throne of Kryta broke one of the seals, and his Lunatic Court set about attempting to break the rest of them, so that he may be as powerful in Tyria as he was in the Underworld. A selection of artifacts from his life was gathered, and a suitable vessel for his spirit was obtained from a mausoleum. The political climate was also prepared for his return, inciting his arch-rival Palawa Joko into swearing to "flood valleys and enslave nations" to get his vengeance on Tyria, and defeating the only being capable of telling as good a joke as the Mad King, Qwytzylkak. But the rituals had not freed King Thorn but his favored steed, Mister Gum Drops, and the Lunatic Court returned to the drawing board chastened.

After his court's failure, the Mad King's influence was not felt for a long time, and he became a folk legend used to scare children. However, in 1325 AE, over two centuries after his court's failure, the Mad King made a dramatic return, shattering the Lion's Court in the Grand Piazza of Lion's Arch and assaulting the citizens with insidious pranks and terrible jokes, attempting to break free into Tyria. His return was opposed by Magister Tassi, and foiled by heroes who ventured straight into the Mad King's realm, defeating him in his own game as well as in battle.


This NPC only appears during Halloween.

Maguuma Jungle
Shiverpeak Mountains
The Mists

Event involvement[edit]

Event pumpkin (map icon).png
Your Mad King says... (80)
Historical events
Event pumpkin (map icon).png
Paranormal Disturbance Zone (1)

Combat abilities[edit]

  • Tricks and Treats
  • Briefly gains Determined and teleports away once health reaches 75% and 25%.
  • Determined.png Determined - Determined to survive and immune to damage.
  • Candy Corn Slice - Swings his sword, causing three candy corn coloured waves to fly out
  • Mad Moon Toss - Bounces his shield off players, inflicting random conditions
  • Night Slash - Part of auto-attack [verification requested]
  • Pumpkin Bombs - AoE attack that causes knockback
  • Scarecrow - Plants a scarecrow, which periodically causes enemies in range to be attacked by ravens and inflicts Fear when destroyed
Stolen skills


For previous quotes, see here.

Lion's Arch[edit]

At Trader's Forum:

Drooburt's Ghost: Do you have anything to spare for quaggan?
Mad King Thorn: Oh, it's you, you insatiable mendicant! For the last time, I have nothing for you to drink.
Drooburt's Ghost: Please, quaggan needs only a little more.
Mad King Thorn: You bottomless bipedal beluga, I'd strangle you if somebody hadn't already beat me to it!
Drooburt's Ghost: Fooooooooo...
Mad King Thorn: Aw, I can't stay mad at you, you tubby little tippler. Come, let us eat a few villagers and terrorize a few fish!

At Fort Marriner:

Mad King Thorn: (evil laughter)
Mad King Thorn: Nice statue you have here, Gnashblade. It would be such a shame if something nasty were to happen to it.
Captain Evon Gnashblade: Just keep your hands off it.
Mad King Thorn: Or else?
Captain Evon Gnashblade: Or else I'll eat all this candy corn and tell your son where to find you.
Mad King Thorn: How dare you threaten me! You're speaking to a king! I've no interest in your brittle, relatively unguarded statue...
Captain Evon Gnashblade: He's going to blow it up. He just can't help himself. I'm sure of it.

Outside of cities[edit]

Mad King Thorn: By the ghost of me, what is this?
Mad King Thorn: I leave for a couple hundred years, and I come back to this? Have you completely forgotten whom you celebrate?
Mad King Thorn: This feeble imposter is a disgrace. I don't putter about telling poorly-constructed nursery rhymes. Insulting!
Mad King Thorn: He doesn't even look like me. His head isn't on fire! This oversight must be rectified! Set him on fire!

"Mad King Thorn" is set on fire.

Mad King Thorn: Sad, sad people of Tyria, clearly you have missed my influence.
Mad King Thorn: But fear not, for I, the mighty and benevolent King Thorn of Kryta, have returned!

Mad King Thorn will tell three jokes from above, each related to the location he's at.

Caledon Forest
Mad King Thorn: It seems the sylvari are here to stay. As no one has nipped them in the BUD, I must assume they're all of good STALK. Maybe they'll GROW on me. (laugh) Plant puns, people, please!
Mad King Thorn: What do you call a sylvari who's round and green? MELON-y! You know, like the name, but also the fruit? Why aren't you all laughing? The, the melon, Melony...Laugh! Or I'll kill every last one of you humorless worms!
Mad King Thorn: Two quaggans were walking in a cow pasture. The first turns to the second and says, "Foo." The other replies, "Cows say moo." The first looks down at his flippers and says, "No, foo. Poo." (snicker)
Metrica Province
Mad King Thorn: I hear—oh, this is a good one—I hear the mortality rate for hylek is very high. They croak every night! (laugh)
Mad King Thorn: At the Durmand Priory, what is an asura's best friend? A bookah.
Mad King Thorn: What do you say when an asura praises you? No one knows yet. (chuckle) Right?
Plains of Ashford
Mad King Thorn: Here's a funny story. Recently, one of my vassals said to me, "Your Majesty! I can't feel my legs!" And I replied, "Of course, you can't, stubby. I cut your arms off!" And I had! (laugh)
Mad King Thorn: Were you aware that grawl have engineers? It's true. I hear one of them invented a new gadget called a "stick."
Mad King Thorn: The other night, a charr warrior told me everything he knew. It took about ten seconds.
Mad King Thorn: I paid a visit to Ascalon before coming here, and I'm not judging—but did shaving go out of style or what?
Mad King Thorn: I'm so disappointed that the dwarves have disappeared. I had so many good jokes about short things. And beards.
Mad King Thorn: Why can't you borrow money from a dwarf? Because they're always a little short. Ha! Get it? Ha ha! Ah, yes, I miss dwarves.
Wayfarer Foothills
Mad King Thorn: I was confused when a servant informed me of the dredge revolt in the Shiverpeaks. As far as I'm aware, dredge have always been revolting! Get it? Ugly bugly! Hoo! (laugh) They're ugly.
Mad King Thorn: What's the fastest way to anger a norn? Tell her you've never heard of her. Ahh, it's funny because it's true. (laugh)
Mad King Thorn: What's a norn's favorite drink? The next one! (laugh) They're all drunk.

After the jokes

Mad King Thorn: Loyal subjects! How can I leave you? My royal heart would be breaking if I still had one.

Lunatic Inquisition[edit]

If character is on the Lunatic Court team
Ah, my fine courtier. How very nice to see you. You were always my favorite, you know. Be a good subject and recruit a few villagers for me.
Talk end option tango.png
On my way.
If character is on the Villager team
What are you doing here? Don't you know there's a feast on? Main course: you! RUN!
Talk end option tango.png

Related achievements[edit]


Gwwlogo.png The Guild Wars Wiki has an article on Mad King Thorn.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]