Shing Jea Island
Shing Jea Island (Shining Jewel Island in Old Canthan) is the largest of an island chain to the west of the Canthan mainland's northern tip. The island is idyllic and rural, and was shared between humans, the native tengu, and yeti. Humanity's spread had caused conflicts with the tengu, sparking the Tengu Wars, though a crude peace was in place until Emperor Usoku took power and drove the tengu out.
Long before the arrival of humans, the Angchu and Sensali tribes of tengu lived in areas such as the Kinya Province on Shing Jea, sharing the sizable island with the territorial and brutal yeti which lived high on the mountains of Jaya Bluffs.
The human tribes that would become modern Canthans settled the northwestern coast of the Canthan continent and Shing Jea circa 786 BE, long before the arrival of the Luxons and the Kurzicks, and would eventually spead to the rest of the main continent. The Six Human Gods are said to have accompanied these first settlers and helped transplant them to this lush new land. Tales tell how gods such as Balthazar and Dwayna walked among mortals in Cantha and other human nations during their travels throughout Tyria but eventually retreated behind the walls of the holy city of Arah in the Kingdom of Orr.
As Canthans continued claiming land and formed the Empire of the Dragon, the valley of Zen Daijun became a holy place to humans and a destination for pilgrims seeking enlightenment on Shing Jea. The valley was known as the home of Zunraa, an ancient protector that took the form of a kirin. Many weary travelers were buoyed by the restorative properties of Zunraa's ancient shrines. Ringing the bell at any of the shrines in this area summoned Zunraa although the guardian would only keep the bodies of pure-hearted people free of all impurities.
In 1 AE (511 CC), the departure of the Six Gods and the almost simultaneous gift of magic had a profound effect on all human cultures, especially those in Cantha. The heroic professions—their formal practices and requirements still in infancy—became widespread. The eldest prince of the imperial line, Chanang, defied the wishes of his father and chose to follow the hero's path. He studied the ways of the warrior and spent four years at a remote temple on Shing Jea learning the holy practices of the monk. He eventually left the temple to perform deeds as a traveling hero, becoming one of the first Canthans to become Weh no Su, Closer to the Stars—a Canthan equivalent to Tyrian Ascension. He was the first ruler to adopt the title "ascendant emperor" upon succeeding his father as Chang Hai.
Hostilities between the local tengu and Canthans beginning to inhabit the region began to grow stronger in 879 AE (1390 CC). Due to this, the Sensali initiated the Tengu Wars, a series of battles taking place over a period of close to two centuries. Though this war eventually ended due to the intervention of Master Togo, it had lasting effects on the local tengu.
A monstrous plant appeared from within a cave beneath Haiju Lagoon to menace the local villagers, and was seemingly slain many times but reappeared frequently. Tales of it began to be told to children, describing how the Bog Beast of Bokku, as it was dubbed by the residents of the lagoon, would hunt down naughty children and consume them, in order to scare the children into being good.
Within Miller Quang, a local villager's lifetime, the naga population inhabiting the island increased greatly, and as a result, some inhabitants of the island went to battle the naga and made good headway until they encountered a particularly hostile and powerful naga known as Xsshsss Zsss which decimated the party attempting to drive off the creatures. Very few managed to flee Xsshsss and those that survived immediately headed to Kaineng City.
It is unknown how, if at all, Shing Jea Island and its coastline were affected by the Rising of Orr, and so this information may not accurately reflect Shing Jea today, instead attempting to document Shing Jea's coastline as last known.
The Zen Nai Falls feed Lake Puang, located northwest of Tsumei Village, with fresh water. A deep hole is located at the falls and connects to all of Cantha by a large subterranean cave system, providing the mainland, which otherwise has very few rivers, with drinking water.
Near this lake lies a large snowy area inhabited by yeti, cut through by Tomaat Pass, a path used by Canthan travelers containing many yeti nests. To the east of the pass lies Sunqua Vale, a grassy plain bordering both the eastern and western mountains of Shing Jea. West of this area lies Kinya Province, a verdant grassland connected to the shallows of the Unending Ocean.
Within the rocky shallows lies an unnamed shipwreck and Onghsang Island, a small isle known to be the home of the kappa, alongside a group of tigers. The kappa are said to return here every spring. The island is overlooked by both the tengu settlement of Aerie and the Seijun Woods, a forest infested with oversized mantids, a Canthan form of insect.
To the south of here lies Panjiang Peninsula, the southwest peninsula of the island inhabited by many forms of hostile fauna, alongside the vicious Crimson Skull guild. Beneath the snowy peaks is the Raiyan Cave, inhabited by large amounts of naga and containing what seems to be Canthan architecture, suggesting that it was formerly inhabited by the nearby Canthans of Port Kaimu before being captured by the naga. The Qi Falls are also located within this region. The falls are considered to be haunted by locals. The seas bordering Panjiang Peninsula are particularly deep and are inhabited by lion-like amphibious creatures called nian, only to emerge during Canthan New Year.
Northeast are the Jaya Bluffs, a frigid and mountainous region that is largely uninhabited, except for by the local yeti, who appear here in great numbers. The highest point in the mountains is Zuuyun Point, overlooking the beach far below. A large bridge spans the nearby canyon. Further east, the Sungkaa Caverns, an icy cave system, grant access to Haiju Lagoon.
Haiju Lagoon is populated by several small villages and surrounded by shallow water, with a small land bridge connecting Yuroso Island to the mainland of Shing Jea. The lagoon's healing waters are inhabited by two unique forms of plant. The valley and wetlands to the south are guarded by Zunraa, a kirin with a number of shrines dedicated to it scattered throughout the island.
- Concept art
Guild Wars concept art.
Appearance of Shing Jea Island in Guild Wars.
- A Shing Jea map was confirmed during the Extra Life 2020 charity stream by Matthew Medina and Tracey West to be explorable.
- Tracey West confirmed during the same stream there are still bells in Shing Jea.
- Several low-resolution textures depicting a world map of Tyria, such as the map in the Durmand Priory or the Order Threat Assessment Board, depict Shing Jea as being a peninsula rather than an island.
- Associated items
- ^ Factions Prima Guide
- ^ Guild Wars 2: Path of Fire—Road to the Desert
- ^ a b c An Empire Divided
- ^ Kaolai
- ^ Karei
- ^ Orrian History Scrolls
- ^ Zen Daijun
- Master Togo: Ring the bell at any of the shrines in this area to summon Zunraa, the guardian of this valley.
- Zunraa: For hundreds of years I have watched over this holy valley. If your heart is pure, I will keep your body free of all impurities.
- ^ For the Future of Cantha!
- ^ Dialogue in The Bog Beast of Bokku
- Baasong: Fear not, little one, for the Bog Beast of Bokku only has an appetite for bad apples! Surely, all children here honor their parents and behave as they should, do they not? [...]
- Baasong: The great Bog Beast's lair is deep in the heart of a hidden cave at the bottom of Haiju Lagoon.
- Baasong: There in the murky depths it sits, never batting an eye, always listening for the voices of insolent children.
- Baasong: When it finds the home of a naughty child, it waits patiently outside the window, quietly listening for the child to drift off to slumber. [...]
- Baasong: With the last candle extinguished and the house enveloped in darkness, the Bog Beast quietly forces the shutters open, slips inside, and steals the child, careful to muffle the screams with its sickly appendages. [...]
- Baasong: What becomes of these children, no one knows for sure. Some say they are taken into the depths of the lagoon with the Bog Beast, where it eats them whole! [..]
- Baasong: Others say the Bog Beast keeps them alive and torments them every night, forcing them to cry out in terror so that all the children might know what will become of them if they misbehave.
- Baasong: The tale I tell is true, stranger, despite my wishes it were not. There is a Bog Beast of Bokku, indeed. Many have slain the creature, but time and again it rises from the grave to claim the bad children once more. I ask of you, find this creature near its home in Haiju Lagoon and slay it in hopes that this time, it will not return. One final word of warning: the Bog Beast is powerful beyond belief, and should only be hunted by the bravest and strongest of heroes.
- ^ Dialogue in Sentimental Treasures
- Miller Quang: I cannot tell you how nice it is to see some new faces around here. Ever since the Naga population exploded, more and more people have moving out of the area. They keep saying I should go, too. But this is my home and no snakes, however large they be, are going chase me away!
- Miller Quang: You know...if you are looking for some work, I could use a little help. You see, before the Naga came, I used to keep some sentimental items in a chest out on Yuroso Island. It's a small island to the northwest. It was great: nice view, nobody around, lots of privacy... I used to sit there for hours sifting through my old things and thinking of times and friends long gone. Now that the Naga have taken over the island, I have been thinking of bringing my things back here where I can keep a closer eye on them. If you retrieve that Old Chest full of memories for me, I shall give you a little something for your trouble.
- ^ Skin the Snake
- Miller Quang: I was hoping you would come around again, <Character name>! Ever since you retrieved my old chest for me, an idea has been forming in my mind. Before the rest of the villagers left, a number of them went to take out the Naga and reclaim our lands. According to the few survivors, they were making good headway until they came up against one particularly nasty Naga. He took out most of them before they even had a chance to react. There were only a handful who managed to flee, and those who did packed up their things that very day and headed to the city. But I have been thinking...if anyone can kill that Naga boss, you can, and maybe, if we can get rid of this Naga, we can convince the other villagers that it is safe to return.
- ^ Appearance of the Naga
- Sister Choi Ju: Captain Zinghu was wise to send you. The latest information is that the Naga have mapped the area and are using the waters of the Zen Nai to traverse the lands. This is troubling because Cantha has very few rivers, and the Zen Nai is one of our main water sources. If you travel to the falls, you will see a deep hole with steep constructed walls. This connects to all of Cantha by a large subterranean cave system, providing our Canthan citizens with fresh water. If something were to happen to this water source, much of Cantha would be without drinking water.
- ^ a b Sister Choi Ju
- Sister Choi Ju: Dwayna's blessings upon you, child. Are you a new student at the monastery? Yes...I thought so. I can always recognize the face of an eager young student hungry for knowledge. If this is your first time on Shing Jea Island, you should really visit some of the local landmarks. Here, in Sunqua Vale, you will find Zen Nai Falls, whose waters supply most of Cantha. You can then take the Tomaat Pass to Kinya Province, which is a truly lovely place. While you are there, be sure to visit the Tengu village of Aerie, as well as Onghsang Island, where the kappa make their home. To the east, in Jaya Bluffs, pass through the Sungkaa Caverns; it is a breathtaking ice cavern that will lead you to Haiju Lagoon, where of course, you absolutely must visit the bustling Hanzing Pier. The merchants there carry some wonderful goods.
- ^ Canthan Guards and Canthan Peasants
- Canthan Child/Canthan Guard/Canthan Peasant: They say every spring the kappa return to Onghsang Island.
- ^ Confirmed by Matthew Medina and Tracey West, Twitch.tv