The Icebrood Saga
While all seems quiet in the wake of Kralkatorrik's defeat, whispers of trouble are stirring in the Northern Shiverpeaks. In this new Living World story, you and your allies will find yourselves at the center of a gathering storm as an ancient and insidious threat slowly reveals itself. Together you'll face Jormag's cult, the Icebrood, who have been twisted by the Elder Dragon's corrupting power.
The Icebrood Saga is the fifth season of the Living World, accessible to players who own Guild Wars 2: Path of Fire. It was announced on August 30, 2019, and started with a prologue episode, Bound by Blood, on September 17, 2019.
This article assumes knowledge of the storyline up to and including Living World Season 4, which takes place after Path of Fire.
- 1 Setting
- 2 Main characters
- 3 Story
- 4 Dates of free access
- 5 Gallery
- 6 Trivia
- 7 External links
- 8 References
The Icebrood Saga focuses on the norn and the charr, as they defend their homelands in the Far Shiverpeaks and the Blood Legion Homelands from the threat of Jormag, the Elder Dragon of Ice and Persuasion.
The saga begins with the four charr High Legions gathering in Grothmar Valley to celebrate the death of Kralkatorrik, while Jormag begins to stir in the far north. Through its promises of power, the Elder Dragon has amassed a sizable army of Icebrood.
After the prologue in Grothmar Valley, Rytlock Brimstone, Braham, and Jhavi Jorasdottir will lead the venture into the inhospitable Far Shiverpeaks, where players will face eldritch abominations, learn about the history of the Spirits of the Wild, and confront Jormag.
- Blood Legion Homelands
- Far Shiverpeaks
- Aurene — The first Elder Dragon allied with the races of Tyria, she is still trying to find her place in the new world while purging the corruption which her predecessor Kralkatorrik has left behind. Despite her benevolent actions, many Tyrians worry about her intentions and the powerful magic she wields.
- Braham Vowbreaker — Young, headstrong norn guardian prophesied to slay Jormag and reclaim the Far Shiverpeaks in the name of his people. After finally making peace with his mother's death, Braham must now face the consequences for cracking the Fang of the Serpent and failing to deliver on his promises.
- Gorrik — An asura formerly of the Inquest, brother of Blish and old friend of Taimi. He joined Dragon's Watch after he and his brother were rescued from Palawa Joko's forces at Rata Primus.
- Kasmeer Meade — A human noble mesmer who helped stop Scarlet Briar, Mordremoth and Balthazar. She and Marjory have spent the last year helping Elonian refugees fleeing from Kralkatorrik after dealing with a crisis of faith caused by Balthazar's rogue actions.
- Marjory Delaqua — A necromancer of Canthan descent. After recovering from injuries caused by Balthazar, she has spent the last year with Kasmeer tracking Kralkatorrik and helping Elonian refugees survive the Crystal Dragon's attacks. She joins the Commander in the north to deal with the growing threat of Jormag.
- Rytlock Brimstone — Blood Legion Tribune with a nasty temper. Rytlock is best known for the sword that forged his reputation: Sohothin, the legendary blade of fire and war. Back home...it's a different story. When his imperator summons him to a celebration commemorating Kralkatorrik's defeat, Rytlock inadvertently helps set into motion a series of events that threatens the future of the charr High Legions.
- General Almorra Soulkeeper — Leader of the Vigil, she goes north towards Jora's Keep to personally deliver the news of Kralkatorrik's defeat.
- Jhavi Jorasdottir — Descendant of the great norn hero Jora, Jhavi has spent her entire life living in the shadow cast by her great-grandmother's legend. As one of the leaders of the Vigil, it's sometimes difficult to differentiate between respect she's earned and respect her lineage demands. Raven might have a few things to say about that.
- Crecia Stoneglow — Bangar's shrewd Head of Security. Her Flame Legion heritage and innate skill as an elementalist might make some charr cagey, but Crecia's loyalty to her imperator and the legion that raised her is seemingly unshakeable. More ambiguous? Her attitude toward her old warband mate, Rytlock. (Don't talk to her about Sohothin.)
- Efram Greetsglory — Acting "imperator" of a Flame Legion splinter group who wishes to atone for his legion's past crimes and attempts to integrate his people back into the High Legions. However, his desire to protect his people has forced him to make many questionable compromises, and he struggles to find his place in the changing political climate.
- Malice Swordshadow — Imperator of the Ash Legion who has many agents spying for her to keep her up to date on the events around Tyria. The driving force behind the Ebonhawke Treaty, she worries that Kralkatorrik's death and Aurene's ascension may change the status quo in Tyria in an unexpected way.
- Smodur the Unflinching — Imperator of the Iron Legion and long-time rival of Bangar vying for the title of Khan-Ur. A cunning politician and progressive visionary, he is willing to be patient and wait for the right time to promote his legion's interests in order to ensure a prosperous future for himself and his allies.
- Bear — A Great Spirit of confidence and ferocity and the natural embodiment of all bears. She is revered by the norn as the most powerful Spirit of the Wild, and she grants the norn the strength to face all odds.
- Snow Leopard — A Great Spirit of cunning and speed and the natural embodiment of all snow leopards. Independent, strategic and stealthy, she laughs in the face of danger and has a darker, feral side which she and her followers channel while on the hunt.
- Raven — A Great Spirit of knowledge and foresight and the natural embodiment of all ravens who has ties to the Underworld. He is fond of riddles and likes to test the wits of his followers and anyone else who wishes to uncover his secrets.
- Wolf — A Great Spirit of brotherhood and loyalty and the natural embodiment of all wolves. He reminds people to work together as a pack to overcome great challenges.
Icebrood and Sons of Svanir
- Drakkar — Champion of Jormag, it hibernated under the ice of Drakkar Lake and helped seduce Svanir into a follower of Jormag in the past.
- Fraenir of Jormag — The highest ranking member of the Sons of Svanir, he is responsible for twisting Raven's magic to create dangerous blizzards and powerful icebrood to carry out Jormag's will.
- Jormag — Elder Dragon of Ice and Persuasion who is currently believed to be recovering under the protection of ice in the frozen north after being damaged by magic channeled from Primordus.
- Bangar Ruinbringer — Leader of the Blood Legion whose winning smile is all teeth. Despite his reputation as a wildcard among the imperators, the best interests of the charr are close to Bangar's heart. His distrust for humans and the other races of Tyria stems not just from prejudice, but from historic wrongs committed against his people.
- Ryland Steelcatcher — Recently promoted Blood Legion Centurion and son of Crecia and Rytlock. Loyal to his legion and imperator, he is willing to go to any lengths to ensure the interests of his people.
Dragon's Watch travels to the Blood Legion homelands at the invitation of Imperator Bangar Ruinbringer to commemorate Kralkatorrik's defeat with an all-legion rally.
— In-game description
After receiving an invitation to attend the gathering of the charr legions in the Blood Legion's homelands, several members of Dragon's Watch met up in the Black Citadel before heading off to Grothmar Valley. Marjory Delaqua and Kasmeer Meade arrived after the Pact Commander had met up with Rytlock Brimstone, Gorrik, and Braham. The small company rode the helicopter north before heading off in different directions to experience the festival, while only Rytlock and Braham stayed with the Commander. Tribune Crecia Stoneglow welcomed the party to the valley and led them to a special seat reserved for the Commander during the opening ceremony. After Blood Legion Imperator Bangar Ruinbringer's opening speech, a ceremonial battle of the "last" Branded minion was put on, led by Ryland Steelcatcher who was revealed to be Rytlock and Crecia's son. However, more Branded invaded the area, forcing the Commander's party to battle them while covertly helping Ryland with the slaying of the Branded. Before the final blow could be dealt, however, Aurene flew by and crystallized Ryland's Branded target in order to end the battle. The sight of the Elder Dragon startled the audience, most notably Bangar who expressed his disappointment at what he perceived as the Commander flaunting their power.
Braham and Ryland met and went off to socialize and get drunk during the festival, occasionally reporting in on their actions, sometimes intentionally. Meanwhile, the Commander partook in several events and met with Imperators Malice Swordshadow of the Ash Legion and Smodur the Unflinching of the Iron Legion, as well as Efram Greetsglory who acted as the leader of a peace-seeking Flame Legion splinter group, to prove that Aurene was no threat. Rumors of trouble were brewing around the camp, with several charr on edge and lashing out at the non-charr attending the festival. Before long, Braham ended up in the brig for causing trouble while drunk, and he called the Commander to release him. While leaving the brig, the pair realized that Braham's bow was not among his detained possessions.
The Commander joined Rytlock and Crecia to confront Bangar about the disturbances and acts of violence. Bangar dismissed the reports, however, and instead chose to antagonize Rytlock who reacted poorly due to the pair's troubled past. A brief brawl ensued between the two charr with Rytlock emerging as the winner while the subdued Bangar urged him to kill him and take over as imperator. Angered but aware of Crecia and the Commander's presence, Rytlock let go of Bangar as he did not want the burden of becoming the next Blood Imperator and did not want anything else from Bangar anymore. Leaving from that meeting, Rytlock and the Commander were ambushed by a rowdy band of charr whom they dispatched quickly. Before they could make sense of all the acts of violence in the festival, the Commander was called away to face yet another emergency.
Hearing from Efram that some charr had been causing trouble around the fahrar and trying to recruit cubs to an unknown cause, Kasmeer placed a mesmer disguise on the Commander to look like Ryland which would allow the Commander to investigate the leads. The trail eventually led to the War Room, where Gorrik was being held captive by several charr. The Commander rescued Gorrik from the kidnappers and found out that they had been intending to force information out of Gorrik about Aurene and her weaknesses. Shortly after, the Commander heard that Bangar, Ryland and several warbands of charr from all of the Legions—including some Renegades—had headed into the Shiverpeaks under the cover of the festival.
The Commander, Rytlock and Crecia chased after the rogue warbands only to learn that Bangar had acquired Braham's bow with Ryland's help and was planning to find and subjugate Jormag in order to "even the odds" against Aurene whom he and his followers viewed as a threat to the charr. However, because of a snowstorm, a destroyed bridge, and an ice elemental, Bangar's group escaped and Dragon's Watch had to return to the keep and wait for the storm to pass before giving chase. Disturbed by Bangar's actions, Efram and the two imperators nevertheless decided to stay in the homelands for the time being and monitor the situation while trying to uncover a connection between Bangar, the Renegades and potential sleeper agents throughout the legions.
Strike Mission: Shiverpeaks Pass
Shortly after the departure of Bangar's army, Crecia and Rytlock decided to send a group of volunteers into Shiverpeaks Pass to scout the area and see if conditions had improved enough to rebuild the bridge which the Renegades had destroyed earlier. After braving the worsening weather and being forced to take a detour, the scouts found themselves facing an icebrood construct which had more devastating attacks than the one the Pact Commander's party had fought earlier. Although the construct was defeated, the blizzard continued. Crecia surmised that someone else must have been responsible for summoning the storm, and decided to send more scouts to the pass later.
Episode 1: Whisper in the Dark
The commander and allies rush to Bjora Marches in pursuit of Bangar as he attempts to subjugate Jormag. But from the moment they arrive, their progress is halted by the vicious Sons of Svanir and mysterious whispers that threaten to unravel them.
— In-game description
The Pact commander received a mysterious call from Almorra Soulkeeper, inviting them to Jora's Keep in Bjora Marches just as the blizzard that had prevented passage to the west had passed. Intrigued by the general's odd message, both in tone and wording, the Commander, alongside Rytlock, Crecia, Braham and Marjory, traveled to the keep, hoping to meet up with Almorra and her Vigil. Instead of a welcoming party, the party found the keep empty; inspecting it further, they discovered its occupants dead, slaughtered with very little resistance. The Commander entered the barracks with Braham, only for both of them to get trapped inside, with the doors mysteriously sealed. To escape it, the Commander used an ancient artifact called the Raven Lens that was found inside. With it, the Commander and Braham successfully unlocked the door and joined the others outside.
Using the lens to reveal spiritual visions of the past, the Commander and Braham were able to follow the path Jhavi Jorasdottir and Almorra had been taken on, held hostage by the male norn of the keep who seemed to have become Sons of Svanir and betrayed the Vigil. The pair tracked the trail that ultimately led to an icy cave, where Braham's former guildmates, Olar and Torrin, had captured Jhavi, forcing her to listen to Jormag's taunts. Once the pair had defeated the turned guildmates and freed Jhavi, she mentioned that the Fraenir of Jormag, an evil shaman leading the Sons of Svanir in the area, was hiding inside the Raven Sanctum and twisting the magic within to create unnatural blizzards and constructs in preparation for an icebrood invasion. To get into the sanctum, the group would need a second lens, and Jhavi knew that the lens had last been held by Almorra. She also found it odd that Almorra had called the group to the marches, since their communicator had been confiscated when she and Almorra had been captured.
The party split up to search the nearby camps for any trace of Almorra, and while doing so, each member heard the whispers of a mysterious voice which tried hard to fracture them. The whispers affected Marjory in particular when she witnessed a traumatic vision of her dead sister Belinda while battling the Sons of Svanir who were conducting a necromantic ritual, and she retreated back to the keep to recover from the visions. The party eventually discovered a coded note in the possession of the Svanir, letting Jhavi know that Almorra had headed up to the Darkrime Delves. The Commander investigated the designated area, only to find that Almorra was long dead, buried under some rubble with her sword poking out nearby. The Commander swore to find out what had transpired in Darkrime Delves and avenge the general's death.
Recovering the second lens, the party used both lenses to unlock the gate leading into the sanctum, with only Marjory electing to stay back at the keep. The sanctum had long been a test for Raven's havrouns, and the Commander moved through the mix of mystical maze and tests of scenarios described by the Spirit. Notably, the choices offered only seemed to lead to bad results, but Jhavi explained that these were by Raven's design to show that life had no straightforward answers to every question. Finally, in the inner chamber, the party found the fraenir who had been leading the Svanir in the area. After being defeated, the fraenir was suddenly reanimated and puppeted by Jormag, claiming to want to help the newest Elder Dragon Aurene bring eternal peace to Tyria and how Aurene and her allies would eventually realize that they needed Jormag's help to face the "terrible things that lurk just beyond the horizon." With the message delivered, Braham stated that the group should not believe Jormag's offer for an alliance. The Commander agreed, but only after a long pause.
Episode 2: Shadow in the Ice
When Braham goes missing in the hunt for Rytlock and Crecia, the commander travels west to find him. Beyond the door in the mountains lies a long-forgotten lake remembered only in norn legend, home to the terrifying source of the whispers plaguing the Far Shiverpeaks...
— In-game description
Jhavi contacted the Commander some time after the liberation of the Raven Sanctum, passing on the information that Rytlock and Crecia had not reported in for days and Braham had headed westward on his own to search for them. The Commander followed suit, spying a spectral Wolf beckoning westward. On the way to Braham, the Commander discovered Eir's dire wolf companion Garm who was under attack by the Sons of Svanir, and he led the Commander to Braham after they had defeated the ambush. Reuniting with the norn who was just as surprised by Garm's sudden appearance as the Commander was, the pair and the dire wolf headed even further west to the remote kodan settlement of Still Waters Speaking. Several of the kodan there had begun to lose themselves to the whispers plaguing the region, especially as the settlement had already lost their Voice. Rytlock and Crecia were being held captive in the settlement due to the kodan suspecting them to be Bangar's spies, but thanks to Braham and the Commander who conversed with the settlement's Claw called Cloudseeker, the two charr were released.
Cloudseeker revealed that the whispers were coming from Drakkar, a champion of Jormag who had seduced Jhavi's great-granduncle Svanir to join the Ice Dragon's cause and led to the creation of the Sons of Svanir cult in the past. Leeching the power of the lost Spirits of Ox, Eagle and Wolverine and the magic of profane Idols of Jormag scattered throughout the region, Drakkar could heal itself and remained effectively immortal and thus impossible to defeat in its current empowered state.
After helping the kodan strengthen their base and purify points of power from Jormag's influence, Braham and Garm found a hidden shrine to Wolf and invited the Commander and Jhavi there while Rytlock and Crecia tracked the movements of Bangar's army. Upon meeting at the shrine, the group witnessed Wolf himself appearing before them and tasking Braham, who had become a chosen norn via fulfilling the conditions of an ancient prophecy by cracking Jormag's fang in the past, with purifying the fallen shrines of Ox, Eagle and Wolverine and convince the lost Spirits to lend their aid against Drakkar. To keep Jormag's champion from noticing what the party was up to, Jhavi volunteered to take a squad of Vigil and kodan to fight Drakkar who had tarnished her family's name.
Braham traveled to the shrines and purified them for a short while with the Commander and other spiritual norn's help. After each ritual, Braham confronted each of the lost Spirits who remained skeptical of his worth and challenged his beliefs. One by one, though, they agreed to help as Braham proved himself to them. Once the shrines had been cleansed and the idols of Jormag had been shattered, Jhavi and Cloudseeker's forces chased Drakkar into a nearby cave, so that it could no longer draw on the magic of the valley, while a party led by the Commander descended into the cave to corner the wounded dragon champion. However, Jormag's power remained strong, and Rytlock and Crecia both fell under the influence of the whispers, trying instead to attack the Commander than the dragon champion during the battle. The Commander was forced to knock the pair out before turning back to Drakkar whom Braham and the lost Spirits blasted and froze it in crystalline form.
Before the party could celebrate their victory, a fragment of Jormag's power, the Whisper of Jormag, emerged from Drakkar's corpse and revealed itself as the true source of the whispers. It initially offered to talk, but the Commander refused to listen. The Whisper successfully made Braham doubt himself in the ensuing battle, and even forced the Commander to fight themself in their mind before Bangar and Ryland suddenly arrived to help finish the vessel off with Braham's bow. Recovering from the mental onslaught, the party confronted Bangar who revealed that he would claim credit for defeating Drakkar and use the feat as proof that he alone could control Jormag and sway the legions behind him. When the Commander protested, Bangar shot them with a fiery arrow while claiming that a clash between the two of them had always been inevitable. Angered by the Blood Imperator's actions and worried about the Commander, Braham was finally able to embrace Wolf's blessing to Become the Wolf and attacked Bangar, only to wound Ryland who stepped in the way to protect his imperator. In the ensuing skirmish, Bangar and Ryland retreated back to their army while Crecia, Rytlock and Braham took the wounded Commander to safety.
While the Commander was passed out, Aurene sensed their distress and had the party move to the Eye of the North where she was roosting, with the Commander resting by the Scrying Pool. Upon waking up and reuniting with Braham, Crecia, Rytlock and Jhavi, the recovering Commander received answers from Aurene about what had transpired in the world since the battle in the cave and what Aurene had been doing in the meantime. With the Commander out of the way, Bangar had claimed full credit for defeating Drakkar, which began fracturing the charr legions even more. Aurene reminded the party, however, that Bangar was only one piece in a bigger whole, and she was still uncertain about Jormag's true motives, so she suggested that the party bide their time for the time being and let Bangar make the first move in order to figure out what they should do next.
Harnessing the Scrying Pool, the commander experiences a vision of the past that sheds light on the forces marshaling in the north.
— In-game description
Aurene introduces the Commander to the Scrying Pool in the Hall of Monuments. She shares a vision of the past, letting the Commander experience what Ryland Steelcatcher's warband were up to between the events of the Prologue and Whisper in the Dark.
The Steel warband successfully guided their tank through treacherous terrain infested with Stone Summit Dwarves, but were unable to navigate through to the Bjora Pass.
Bangar Ruinbringer and Ryland then attempted to find a new path through the Darkrime Delves. During their travels, they came across Almorra Soulkeeper (who had been kidnapped by the Svanir under the influence of Jormag). Although they initially worked together to overcome the Icebrood, Almorra bickered with Bangar, and - acting on the orders of Bangar Ruinbringer - Ryland defeated Almorra. Bangar then finished her off and instructed Ryland to hide the body in the Darkrime Ruins.
Episode 3: No Quarter
Dates of free access
Logging into the game between the two dates listed would unlock the related episode for free. You can unlock the episodes even if you do not own Path of Fire, but you must have the expansion in order to play them. The dates are as follows:
|Prologue: Bound by Blood||September 17, 2019 - November 19, 2019|
April 28, 2020 - May 4, 2020
|Whisper in the Dark||November 19, 2019 - January 28, 2020 |
February 10, 2020
May 5, 2020 - May 11, 2020
|Shadow in the Ice||January 28, 2020 - March 17, 2020|
May 12, 2020 - May 18, 2020
|Visions of the Past: Steel and Fire||March 17, 2020 - May 26, 2020|
|No Quarter||May 26, 2020 - TBA|
Kodan burial at sea concept art from the announcement trailer.
Bangar Ruinbringer concept art for Prologue: Bound by Blood.
- A saga is a long story of the adventures of a hero or a family, especially a medieval prose narrative written in Old Norse or Old Icelandic.
- The Icebrood Saga is known as "Bloed en Ijs" and "Sangre y Hielo" (Blood and Ice) in Dutch and Spanish, respectively.
- On February 10, 2020, the Guild Wars 2 twitter account tweeted, "Due to a bug, Episode 1 of The Icebrood Saga is currently free in the #GuildWars2 gem store. We have a fix going in for that tomorrow, but in the meantime if you have not unlocked Whisper in the Dark yet, log in to get it for free today!"
- Official website
- Announcement trailer
- The Icebrood Saga activities teaser, Twitter.com
- The Icebrood Saga Begins September 17