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Menzies the Mad, the Lord of Destruction, is the half-brother of the God of War and Fire, Balthazar. He commands the Shadow Army and has fought the Eternal Battle against Balthazar's Eternals in the Fissure of Woe for centuries. Unlike Balthazar who has been associated with honor and valor, Menzies has been described as deceptive and destructive.


Early years[edit]

Menzies the Mad[1] is the half-brother of the God of War and Fire, Balthazar, and is called the Lord of Destruction.[2] It is unclear whether they shared the same father or mother. The half-brothers became rivals at some point, and Menzies commanded the Shadow Army against Balthazar's Eternals in a neverending, centuries-spanning conflict which became known as the Eternal Battle in Balthazar's realm of the Fissure of Woe. In some correspondences Menzies was referred to as "the traitor."[3] The origins of the Shadow Army are unclear; they have been speculated to be living shadows, souls of the dead who have been cursed to fight in the Eternal Battle, or magical constructs created out of nightmares. Whatever their origins, they are compelled to attack anything they sense Balthazar's presence in.[4][5] The Forest of the Wailing Lord chose to remain neutral in the conflict between Balthazar and Menzies, allowing both armies to harvest the forest to fuel their war efforts.[6]

Conflicts in the Mists[edit]

At some point, Menzies allied with the fallen god Abaddon and the former god Dhuum in a triumvirate. As part of his pact with Abaddon and Dhuum, Menzies sent three of his Darknesses from the Shadow Army to lead a force of Dhuum's followers and Abaddon's demons in an attack on the Hall of Heroes through the portal from the Tomb of the Primeval Kings in 1072 AE.[7][8][9] When Abaddon attempted to break free from his prison and caused Nightfall in 1075 AE, Menzies lent some of his Shadow Army to the fallen god's cause, stationing them in the Ravenheart Gloom on the edge of the Realm of Torment.[10]

The Shadow Army was able to take over the Temple of War, located in the heart of the Fissure of Woe, when Menzies successfully swayed Lord Khobay to betray the Eternals.[11] At the same time, Menzies had his shadow overlords enslave souls and send the slaves to the Burning Forest to fetch foul materials which the shadow smiths would then use to forge weapons for the Shadow Army.[12] A priest of Menzies was sent to unleash dark sorcery from unholy texts so the battle would turn in Menzies's favor.[13] Despite these initial successes, the Shadow Army lost their hold when a group of mortal heroes assisted the Eternals in retaking the temple, hunting down Khobay's unit of treacherous temple guards, slaying the shadow overlords to free Menzies's slave labor, and stealing the unholy texts so their magical power could not be used against the Eternals. Upon learning that Menzies's forces had used potent miasma to taint the pure fires of the Temple of War's forge to corrupt any armor or weapons created within, the heroes sought the seeds of corruption and destroyed them to restore the tainted temple.[14]

Menzies was never seen on the front lines during these conflicts, content in remaining in the shadows. After Abaddon's demise and Kormir's ascension, the Shadow Army began fighting alongside one of Abaddon's strongest Margonite followers, Mallyx the Unyielding, in desperation.[10] The Shadow Army appeared to weaken after mortals slew Mallyx as well.

Interim years[edit]

As the Elder Dragons began awakening and spreading destruction throughout Tyria, Balthazar craved for action and was more than willing to accept the challenge of facing the Elder Dragons in combat in order to add their power into his own. The God of War had been more or less idle since the Exodus of the Gods, suggesting that he had either defeated Menzies to shift his focus to the next challenge that the Elder Dragons posed in the years since Kormir's ascension, or Menzies had eluded his wrath and not given him enough of a fight.[15]

Path of Fire[edit]

At an unknown point in time following Kormir's ascension, the status of the Eternal Battle had shifted to seemingly make the Shadow Army less of a threat.[3] However, even after Balthazar had been stripped of his divinity and he had turned many of his Eternals into the Forged to focus on battling the Elder Dragons instead, the Shadow Army continued to roam the Fissure of Woe seeking their enemy. Some Inquisitive Djinn speculated that Balthazar's ousting might have allowed Menzies to take control of the Fissure of Woe, suggesting that the Lord of Destruction might actually still be alive. The fate of Menzies remains presently unknown.

Secrets of the Obscure[edit]

At at unknown point in time, the Shadow Army attempted to invade Tyria and faced resistance from the dwarven wizard Lyhr and the Astral Ward who pushed them back. During the clash Lyhr demanded to know if the Shadow Army's master or someone else had sent them to assault Tyria but received no answer.[16]


  • Menzies (pronounced Mingus; rhymes with "thing is") is the name of a Highland Scottish clan. It is debated within the community and among ArenaNet developers whether the pronunciation applies to Balthazar's half-brother as well.[17]

See also[edit]

Gwwlogo.png The Guild Wars Wiki has an article on Menzies.
Associated items


  1. ^ "Honor"
    "In a time of darkness, there was light. Behold this shining star of honor, who followed Balthazar's summons into the Fissure of Woe and defied Menzies the Mad. May the victory over the Eternals be remembered so long as the stars shine! May the Forge eternally be free! All Hail <Character name>!"
  2. ^ Inquisitive Djinn
  3. ^ a b Strange Burning Scroll
  4. ^ Crystal Bloom Camp ambient dialogue
  5. ^ Help Zaeim and Caithe establish a camp to the northwest
  6. ^ The Wailing Lord
    Rastigan the Eternal: The forest to the north has long been allied with neither Balthazar nor Menzies. The God of War has allowed this neutrality so long as the Wailing Lord has not interfered with our forces. Of late, the Wailing Lord has protested our forays to gather timber and stone for the Temple of War. Workers and messengers have been attacked.
  7. ^ Commander Kuro
  8. ^ Letters from Kuro
  9. ^ Ruins of the Tomb of the Primeval Kings
  10. ^ a b Virashak
  11. ^ Khobay the Betrayer
    Eternal Forgemaster: It was through treachery, not force of arms, that Menzies waylaid the true protectors of the Temple and imprisoned me. Imagining some greater glory he might attain, the scheming Lord Khobay, head of the Temple Guard, betrayed us and delivered the Temple into the Hands of the Shadow Army.
  12. ^ Slaves of Menzies
    Miko the Unchained: You are the one who has been inflicting such casualties to the Shadow Army, aren't you? Listen to me: This "forest" provides foul materials that the shadow smiths use in forging weapons for the armies of the Lord of Destruction. The labor is all carried out by slaves. Soon they and their masters will appear. You can strike a crippling blow to Menzies and the Shadow Army by destroying the Shadow Overlords and allowing the slaves to escape.
    Miko the Unchained: Please, my friends have suffered for so long in servitude to the Lord of Destruction. Grant them freedom from this eternal torment by destroying the Shadow Overlords that have enslaved them. If you will not do so for mercy, do so for the sake of conquest. Without these slaves, the forces of Menzies will be weakened and will surely fall to Balthazar's Eternal Army.
  13. ^ Army of Darkness
    Kromril the Eternal: The army of Menzies will soon be upon the battle plain, and it shall be my duty to lead the Eternals against them. The enemy cannot overcome the power of Balthazar, but I have sensed some dark sorcery upon the battlefield, some new trick of the deceiver Menzies.
    Kromril the Eternal: Quickly, before the Shadow Army has mustered, go into the camp across the battlefield and strike down the Priest of Menzies. Then bring to me any unholy texts you find. That is how we shall discover the nature of this dark sorcery.
  14. ^ Restore the Temple of War
    Eternal Forgemaster: Here at the heart of the Temple of War are forged the very arms and armor of the gods. This most sacred of places has been defiled. During the brief period while the vile Shadow Army of Menzies usurped the Temple, they choked the pure fires of the forge with a vile miasma used to imbue all their weapons with an unholy taint.
    Eternal Forgemaster: Though they have been driven from the Temple, the source of the corruption remains in the tunnel that feeds the forge. Go to the tunnel and purge it of all seeds of corruption.
    Eternal Forgemaster: I would not consider using the forge in this condition. Anything created while the fires are so corrupted will surely be corrupt itself. Seek out the source of this taint. Hunt down the seeds of corruption left by Menzies.
  15. ^ Comments by Connor Fallon and Scott McGough,
  16. ^ Purge Lyhr's corruption
  17. ^ Guild Chat - Episode 85