A list of characters and factions from Grim Dawn.
Beware of spoilers!
The Player Character. A human formerly possessed by an aetherial. This experience left him/her with no recollection of his/her past and newfound abilities and power. The Taken can pick two of eight classes called masteries as he/she levels up, with many different skills and affinities.
Tropes applied to the Taken in general
- Amnesiac Hero: A side-effect of the aetherial possession.
- Creepy Good: Could be one of three flavours of witch, an assassin, or a pyromaniac, but is still a good person.
- Dark Is Not Evil: The Nightblade, the Occultist and the Necromancer classes.
- Deadpan Snarker: Some of the dialogue options reflects this, more prominent when talking to unpleasant or Cloudcuckoolander characters.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Constantly through the game, the Taken manages to kill abomination after abomination.
- Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: That said there are a few enemies in the game that are well and beyond what the Taken can handle under normal circumstances, usually anything that counts as a Physical God.
- Evolving Attack: Some masteries have skills that do bonus damage when used as the left mouse button skill. These are cheap and grow in power over the course of the game.
- All skills can be upgraded and developed with skill points.
- Kill It with Fire: If they choose the Demolitionist class, which has many incendiary skills. If they don't, there are several constellations and weapons that grant fire damage and skills.
- Mage Marksman: Sword, gun, magic, ayup.
- Mutually Exclusive Magic: Most of the masteries have one or more toggleable skills tagged as exclusive, meaning only one of them can be active at any given time. For example, the Necromancer has two skills; Master of Death that substantially buffs all pets and Harbinger of Souls that significantly increases the Necromancer's magical damage and Life Drain, while Shaman has Stormcaller's Pact, which increases cold and lightning damage, and Primal Bond, which buffs physical damage and pets, and a Ritualist (Shaman + Necromancer) can only have one of these four active at the same time.
- Only Known By Their Nick Name: You're known as The Taken to pretty much everyone.
- Purely Aesthetic Gender: You can make the Taken male or female, but it makes no difference gameplay-wise.
- Star Power: Spending Devotion points on various constellations on Cairn's night sky provides players with increased stats and may grant them Celestial powers, ranging from healing and protection to powerful summons and destructive spells.
- Badass Normal: Most of their abilities are natural combat skills honed to their utmost.
- Boring, but Practical: Soldier gameplay largely consists of picking a melee attack and using it for the rest of the game, and all other skills are damage-increasing and/or defensive buffs and passives. This works very well, and part-soldier classes typically max out Soldier first.
- Close-Range Combatant: While they have some ranged options, most characters that take Soldier are meant to be in the thick of things.
- Counter Attack: He has many retaliation-related skills.
- Evolving Attack: The skill Cadence starts out as the light-light-heavy combo from a Beat-'Em-Up game, and evolves to have elemental damage, a chance to bleed the enemy, and a guaranteed crit.
- Foe-Tossing Charge: The Blitz skill will cause the Soldier to charge at full speed and knockdown multiple enemies at the point of impact.
- Heroic Second Wind: When reaching below a certain amount of health, he will rapidly heal.
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Soldiers specialize in shields, boosting how much damage they can block with them and how often.
- Razor Wind: His Forcewave skill fires compressed air with a shield or a two-handed weapon.
- Stone Wall: Easily the sturdiest class in the game, with multiple passives that extend your life and survivability.
- Badass Normal: Unusually for what's essentially a fire mage (or a fire priest of Ulzuin, as it were), the entirety of the Demolitionist's arsenal is a list of explosives and other gadgets, with the occult or Ulzuin's explicit divine intervention being mentioned very rarely.
- Blinded by the Light: The flashbang grenade works like this. The light reduce enemies' defenses and can cause confusion, slowness and fumbling.
- Bottomless Magazines: Demolitionists never run out of ammunition or explosives.
- Caltrops: Stun Jacks. If that weren't enough, they're electrified to boot (heh).
- Cluster Bomb: Canister Bomb, which is a pipe bomb with five firecrackers crammed in. It can be upgraded to have an electrified pipe ("Improved Casing"), which causes internal bleeding and lightning damage, and extra powder with a pinch of lightning crystals ("Concussion Bomb"), which stuns enemies.
- The Engineer: The combat type.
- Evolving Attack: Flame Strike starts out as a flaming bullet, then gets Splash Damage, a chance to knock enemies down, and finally, it splits into a cluster of fireballs when it hits.
- Grenade Spam: Ulzun's Chosen, a capstone passive, provides (in addition to a damage buff to same), an up to 40% chance to nullify the cooldown of Stun Jacks, Grenado and Canister Bomb.
- Hellfire: Has skill modifiers that add chaos damage to Blackwater Cocktail, Thermite Mines, and Fire Strike.
- Heroic Second Wind: Blast Shield, automatically activating when he drops to about half health, provides the player with increased resistances and temporary hit points.
- Jack-of-All-Stats: the raw stat version, the Demolitionist line has the most balanced stat gains per mastery point invested. Demos also offer skills for damage (melee and ranged), defense, crowd control, and an array of various offensive spells, making them a good pick for any playstyle you'd want.
- Kill It with Fire: Blackwater Cocktail, and a good chunk of the rest of the arsenal.
- Long-Range Fighter: One of the possible builds is to have him use a gun and explosives. However, his skills can also be refitted to make him a Close-Range Combatant.
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: The Blast Shield skill.
- Mad Bomber: Many of their skills consist in throwing explosive stuff at the enemy.
- Man on Fire: Flame Touched and Vindictive Flames. Flame Touched and its upgrade Temper, is an enchantment they put on themselves, while Vindictive Flames is an explicit blessing of Ulzuin that causes fire damage as a Retaliation ability. Its upgrade, Ulzuin's Wrath, adds thunderbolts as well. This is also the natural result of fighting a class who starts out with incendiary bullets and firebombs.
- Playing with Fire: He has many fire based abilities.
- Shock and Awe: Lightning is another of his specialty.
- Standard Status Effects: Most of their spells have a chance to cause Burning
- Throw Down the Bomblet: Immune to their own grenades, regardless of what kind.
- Trick Bomb: firebombs, frag grenades, flashbangs, or cluster bombs. Even the relatively mundane Grenado can be upgraded to have tricks as well; Skyfire, which adds lightning damage, in addition to its higher yield and concussive force upgrades (it is mentioned to be on the border between a mundane explosive and a magic spell, however).
- The Turret Master: Summons a mortar that automatically fires at enemies.
- Attack Backfire: Fevered Rage states that it's just as dangerous to the caster as the victim.
- Bloody Murder: Blood of Dreeg gives them acidic blood for a minute or two, causing retaliation damage.
- Boring, but Practical: Occultists have a varied arsenal, but for most who pick them as their "second" mastery, their most powerful spells are self-buffs and a curse that reduces enemy resistances.
- Clever Crows: Raven Familiar is one of his pet and it can heal your wounds and deliver lightning damage.
- Creepy Good: The kind of person who usually gets burnt at the stake for consorting with demons and blighting crops, but they've pointed their horrifying magic at the Aetherials.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Occultists commune with and summon demons, sap enemies' life force and burn them with acid. This has no story implications.
- Death from Above: The Doombolt which calls down a massive bolt of vitality and chaos energies from the sky and hit the helpless foe of your choosing.
- Eyes Do Not Belong There: "There" being whizzing through the air and exploding into acidic slime.
- Hellhound: One of his pet is a hellhound that deal fire and chaos damage.
- Jack-of-All-Stats: The Occultist has something useful for almost every character. Curse of Frailty decreases enemy resistances, Blood of Dreeg heals and buffs your Offensive Ability, and Solael's Witchfire makes you attack faster.
- Make Them Rot: They have a spell that inflicts the Black Plague on enemies. Its upgrades explicitly state that their organs are rotting and the pain and fever drives them insane. This is why, lore-wise, Occultists get burned at the stake.
- Mighty Glacier: Occultists have no way to get places faster, but between their defensive buffs, health regeneration, and easy access to multiple forms of lifestealing, they can be deceptively difficult to kill.
- The Minion Master: He has two pets: a Hellhound and a Storm Raven, and can further enhance them with Solael's Witchfire and Bonds of Bysmiel.
- Plague Master: Their skill Bloody Pox starts out causing a self-replicating Do T debuff, and evolves to creating Technically Living Zombies.
- Standard Status Effects: The aforementioned Bloody Pox spell inflicts Plague, and their Eye of Dreeg spell causes poisoning.
- Victory by Endurance: Provided an occultist player survives the damage in the first place, they can simply heal it all back.
- An Ice Person: He has an affinity for cold damage.
- Badass Normal: Enough of the Nightblade's abilities are supposed to be a result of training that it's possible to build such a character.
- Dual Wielding: The Nightblade can use two weapons at the same time, providing you invest at least 1 point in the Dual Blades skill. Note that it is not restricted to swords, it can work with any one-handed melee weapon.
- Flash Step: Shadow Strike will rapidly zip you next to your opponent and deliver massive amount of hurting.
- Flechette Storm: A skill that throw multiple knives at opponents.
- Glass Cannon: Deals extreme damage in melee (or from distance, if using Phantasmal Blades), but lacks health, preferring an easy self-heal and a temporary invulnerability.
- Poisoned Weapons: Poison is the staple of all assassins.
- Professional Killer: His nighttime job is killing people that need to be removed.
- Death from Above: She can drop ice meteors or aether meteors on his enemies.
- Disintegrator Ray: The aether ray can deliver massive fire and aether damage. Combine with the disintegrate upgrade, the ray can further deal more damage in the form of lightning. This ability is however a huge drain on your energy reserve.
- Elemental Powers: Arcanist has the power of fire, cold and lightning and aether.
- Glass Cannon: Subverted. Maiven's Sphere of Protection and Mirror of Ereoctes are some of the better defensive skills in the game.
- Heroic Second Wind: Like Soldier and Demolitionist, Arcanists have a buff that automatically triggers on low health, but instead of healing and defense, it provides the player with offense and mana, probably intended to help clean the screen from the ones that deal it in the first place.
- Recursive Ammo: Panettis Replicating Missile splits into 3-5 (depending on skill level) extra shots when it hits an enemy. Crosses over with Herd-Hitting Attack.
- Status-Buff Dispel: The only Mastery capable of this without the use of Devotion constellations. The skill in question is Nullification, which both dispels enemy buffs but also debuffs on the player character and/or allies.
- Squishy Wizard: Arcanists are casters that offer little in the way of physical combat. When characters who deal damage up close pick arcanist, they usually do so just for the few defensive buffs she offers.
- Sufficiently Advanced Magic: They study magic, as opposed to the Shaman and Occultist, who simply channel it. Their basic attack skill, "Panetti's Replicating Missile," is a refinement of Magic Missile that supposedly violates Conservation of Energy, and it took Panetti a long time to develop.
- Always Accurate Attack: The Storm Totems' lightning attacks never miss their targets.
- Deal with the Devil: The capstone of Wendigo Totem is entering a pact with the spirit, rather than simply invoking it with the totem.
- The Minion Master: Two temporary pets and permanent pet, a Manticore, Wind Devil and a Briarthorn respectively.
- Life Drain: Blood Pact (Wendigo Totem upgrade), Feral Hunger and Devouring Swarm.
- Magic Knight: Shamans' lightning spells often involve using their weapon as a conduit to someone's face.
- Nature Hero: The Shaman has an affinity to nature because his skills involve wild creatures and weather controlling effects.
- Shock and Awe: The Shaman has many lightning skills in the form of wind devils, storm totems and two-handed skills.
- Stone Wall: Shamans have a number of defensive and self-sustaining spells.
- The Swarm: The Devouring Swarm skill which send a flight of bugs at your enemies. Even fully maximized, the damage is low, so boosting bleeding and vitality through synergies is a crucial.
- The Turret Master: The Shaman can drop totems on the ground and they will attack anyone that come too close to them.
- Badass Normal: Inquisitors don't cast spells, but use magic artifacts enchanted by someone else.
- Combat Medic: A viable playstyle given the plethora of buffs and support skills the Inquisitor has at their disposal.
- Critical Hit Class: Emphasized with the Deadly Aim Passive. Which activates on a critical hit, boosting your crit damage further as well as giving a large boost to Offensive Ability, allowing you to crit even more.
- Elemental Powers: Much like the Arcanist, the Inquisitor also specializes in utilizing fire, ice and lightning based attacks, both as spells and with ranged weapons.
- Fire-Breathing Weapon: The "Flames of Ignaffar" spell - essentialy a magic flamethrower.
- Guns Akimbo: The Mastery's selling point. Much like Nightblade it unlocks the ability to invest in the ability to do this at mastery level 1.
- Item Caddy: While it makes no difference gameplay-wise, Inquisitors' offensive abilities come from a bag of magic items they carry around.
- Long-Range Fighter: The Inquisitor mainly relies on guns or spells as his way of dealing damage.
- Mage Marksman: Enchanted firearms.
- More Dakka: An Inquisitor specced for Storm Spread will play like this, as Storm Spread fires out 4 fanning shots per pistol (or 8 in the case of a 2 handed ranged weapon). It may seem weak with each shot only dealing 33% weapon damage, however nothing stops you from having all 8 shots hit one target.
- Spread Shot: Storm Spread fires many lightning balls in a spread-out pattern from your firearm.
- Status Buff: Unique among all masteries is the Inquisitor Exclusive Skill Aura of Conviction, in that it is the only exclusive skill in the game that also extends to your allies be they NPCs, pets, or other players.
- Trap Master: Both rune spells are essentially traps.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Second most "evil" mastery in the game, no storyline effects aside from being marked hostile by a faction that hunts necromancers.
- Dem Bones: Necromancers can raise skeletons to fight for them. You'll get warriors, archers and arcanists. The number and quality of skeletons depend of your skill levels.
- Hard-Coded Hostility: Necromancers are explicitly barred from joining Kymon's Chosen. Although you can still join them by simply siding with them before picking the Necromancer Mastery. They won't be pleased to find out they let a necromancer in, though.
- Life Drain: Has multiple skills that convert part of their damage to health including; a channeled ranged attack, a Area of Effect nova, a passive chance on all base attacks and a toggleable guarantee on all basic attacks.
- Minion Master: Can have eight Skeletons, a Blight Fiend and a temporary Sundered Wraith just from class skills alone. Necromancers can also apply temporary and toggleable buffs to their minions.
- Quantity vs. Quality: Skeletons are weaker than other pets, but you can get at least three on the lowest level of the skill.
- Our Ghosts Are Different: Another pet is the Sundering Wraith which only last for a limited time.
- Stone Wall: Particularly when combined with a Soldier into a Death Knight.
- Victory by Endurance: If they haven't put their skill points into summoning minions Necromancers can be supremely hard to take down with multiple life-leeching methods and high levels of retaliation damage.
- Counter Attack: Can add a portion of their melee retaliation damage to their attacks, synergizing well with some item sets that offer a lot of retaliation.
- Everything's Better with Spinning: The Eye of Reckoning skill which allows you to spin around and damage multiple adversaries.
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Oathkeepers are a shield-based mastery, moreso than Soldier.
- The Paladin: One of his multiclass is called paladin. Oathkeeper are Church Militant by nature and deliver holy damage against their foes. The Inquisitor provides healing and party buffs.
- Shield Bash: The Oathkeeper can do this without any special components or unique shields' special abilities.
- Throwing Your Shield Always Works: One skill is hurling your shield and hitting multiple targets with it, Captain America-style.
- You Will Not Evade Me: The Judgement skill pulls nearby enemies in and can be augmented to slow them.
A member of the Luminari, an order responsible for protecting the Erulan Empire from supernatural threats, and the most prominent figure in the human resistence against the aetherial and chtonians.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: As Ulgrim puts it, Creed is one of the most powerful inquisitors in Cairn, with many years of experience handling supernatural threats and powerful magical artifacts at his disposal. This is further demostrated by the fact that he managed to escape Krieg's underground laboratory unharmed.
- Big Good
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Creed doesn't mind working alongside occultists, witches and necromancers, despite belonging to an order whose main job was to hunt down people like them. He understands that you can't be too selective with your allies in the Apocalypse.
- Scars Are Forever: Creed has a scar over his right eye.
A cook you find in your way to Burrwitch. You can invite him to Devil's Crossing, where he'll serve you soup and tell you stories. He is also none other than the First Blade of the Emperor, a renowned assassin and spy working alongside Inquisitor Creed to repel the aetherial and chtonian invasions.
- Ambiguously Human: Creed writes in his journal that he's not entirely convinced Ulgrim is completely human, given his near-superhuman strength and his surprisingly vast knowledge of ancient history, and may in fact be an Ascendant Demigod.
- Badass in Distress: Ulgrim gets trapped in the void by the end of Act IV. You have to rescue him in the Expansion.
- Badass Mustache: Ulgrim sports a mustache and is very much a badass, as many suspect he is no ordinary human.
- Big Good
- Chef of Iron: When you find Ulgrim, he has been surviving in the wilderness of Burrwitch for days, hunting down and eating anything that dared to get too close to him. Not bad for a cook. Subverted in the sense that Ulgrim is actually a very dangerous professional assassin, although it seems that cooking is a real hobby for him.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: He's the one who finishes off the Loghorrean after the Taken banishes it back to the void.
- Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: When you reach Void's Edge, you find him with a heavily wounded arm and rambling nonsense, indicating that the battle took a considerable toll on his sanity. Fortunately, you eventually manage to snap him out of it.
- Dual Wielding: He always carry two swords on his back.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: When he first reveals to the Taken that he's not actually a cook, he remarks that maybe things would have been better if he was.
- King Incognito: When you find him at the Burrwitch Outskirts he presents himself as a simple cook who somehow managed to survive the Grim Dawn by his own. But later you find that he's one of Cairn's deadliest person: the late emperor's personal assassin and spy.
- The Kingslayer: He is responsible for killing the Emperor who was possessed by an Aetherial. He done so reluctantly however.
- Offscreen Moment of Awesome: We only get to see the aftermath of his battle to death with the Loghorrean.
- Really 700 Years Old: Heavily implied. Ulgrim seems to be strangely familiar with the first summoning of the Loghorrean, an event that happened many centuries ago.
- Walking Spoiler: Nearly all of his entries has spoiler tags, otherwise we'll be revealing too many surprises.
A group of survivors taking shelter in the Devil's Crossing prison. They are the ones who find the Taken.
Captain John Bourbon
The leader of Devil's Crossing.
- Hero of Another Story: Talking to various NPC reveal that Bourbon saved many refugees and brought them to Devil's Crossing.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: He has you hanged for being a Taken. When the Aetherial leaves your body before you die, Captain Bourbon saves you since he now sees you as a human being. He then makes a deal with you: help them defend and rebuild their place in exchange for a new home and eventually, acceptance from the other survivors.
- Scars Are Forever: Bourbon has a scar over his right eye.
Chief scientist of Devil's Crossing.
- Absent-Minded Professor: Kasparov is a scientist and is rather insensitive to people around him.
- Everyone Has Standards: He doesn't seem to care too much about the ethical implications of most of his experiments, but even he finds Theodin's researchs too wicked and disturbing to ever want them to see the light of day.
- For Science!: Although his researchs end up being useful for the player and for humanity in general, this seems to be his main motivation.
- Major Injury Underreaction: While experimenting, Kasparov lose another of his fingers. He simply shrugs off and continue talking to you as nothing happened.
- No Social Skills: He's more comfortable with his research than people.
The local executioner.
- Burn the Witch!: In the opening cinematic, you were hanged because you were a Taken. However, the Aetherial possessing you fled your body just as you died. Captain Bourbon saved you from the noose because he now sees you as a human being. Jarvis still wants you hanged however.
- Inspector Javert: No matter what you say or do, he'll refuse to believe that you're on their side. When you save the world from the Ch'thonians, he's completely baffled and wonder what you really up to.
The spirit guide for Devil's Crossing.
- Heroic Sacrifice: A line from Edwin the cook suggest that she saved his life just before meeting her end.
- In the Hood: Sahdina always wear a hood.
- Killed Offscreen: Sahdina is killed while Devil's Crossing is under attacked at the beginning of the Ashes of Malmouth expansion.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Aside from being in game's intro and skilled with spirits dealing, the PC player hardly know anything about Sahdina before she dies.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The Rhowani, also called Rovers, are very much like the Romani. They constantly travel, have no place to call home and other civilizations look down on them with prejudice. Some of them even have wagons.
- Martial Pacifist: Rovers devote their lives to non-violence. However, that doesn't mean they are stupid. They will defend themselves if threaten and with the Grim Dawn, some are willing to throw that notion away.
- Action Mom: Dalia, a retired adventurer, has a daughter named Lisa.
- Missing Mom: Dalia's mother is absent from the game.
- Non-Action Guy: With the exception of the Thornsbury family, absolutely no one in this faction is capable of fighting, they are all farmers or refugees. They rely on you and the Black Legion for protection.
- Retired Badass: A hidden sidequest hints that Dalia was once a mighty adventurer like the Taken, but retired after her brother Dravis fell into evil due to his obsession with their father's legacy. Ashes of Malmouth reveals that not only is this very much true, but Dalia has now taken up her sword once more in order to stop Dravis from hurting others in his hunt for their father.
A farmer and missing brother of Dalia Thornsbury.
- Ambition Is Evil: Being a necromancer and immortal isn't enough for him, he wants to become an evil god.
- Big Bad Wanna Be: Dravis has delusions of grandeur and wants to overtake Korvaak as the new god. First, his powers are limited to necromancy, not celestial or divine. Second, necromancy gives him power over the undead and immortality, but not invulnerability. Third, he doesn't have any worshipers to back him up.
- Cain and Abel: Dalia and Dravis. Dalia is a friendly, helpful and secretly monstrously powerful adventurer, while Dravis has become obsessed with their father's legacy and secrets that he's become a villainous necromancer.
- Disappeared Dad: Dravis's father disappeared from the family farm. However, it's believed that he's still alive somewhere.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: Dravis is not shy about boasting his newfound powers.
- Evil Is Hammy: Once Dravis has a taste of power, his speech pattern take dramatic shift skyward.
- Evil Uncle: Dravis is the evil uncle of Lisa Thornsbury, Dalia's daughter.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Dravis started as a simple farmer's son. Once he discovers his father's dark secrets, he becomes hellbent on surpassing him and becoming a god.
- The Ghost: You heard of him by reading various notes and interacting with his sister Dalia, but he's never found in the game. Until he does show up in Forgotten Gods.
- Kneel Before Zod: He demands this of you in exchange for mercy.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Dravis has red eyes, courtesy of his necromantic powers and his will to overtake the world by force.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: The Thornsbury siblings are quite the opposites. Daila is loving and caring while her brother Dravis is violently obsessed.
- Walking Spoiler: All his entries are hidden for a good reason.
- We Can Rule Together: Dravis has tempted Dalia to rule by side, but she turned him down.
- Action Girl: All female members of the Black Legion are capable of fighting, including Elsa.
- Army of Thieves and Whores: Their ranks are made up entirely by conscripted criminals.
- Badass in Distress: Elsa is very capable warrior. Her capture by Cronley's men was because of his companion's recklessness.
- Brainwashing for the Greater Good: All Black Legion soldiers are mentally conditioned to loyally serve the Empire, no matter what. Captain Somer called the legion an addictive drug. She also mentioned that her uncle bailed her out, but she simply rejoined their ranks.
- Damsel out of Distress: We were lead to believe that Elsa was just a typical Damsel in Distress. In truth, she escapes Cronely's gang on her own and slain leagues of monsters to reach Homestead.
- Elite Army: Despite their criminal backgrounds, they are widely regarded as the best warriors Cairn has to offer.
- Good Is Not Nice: While they are dedicated to safeguarding humanity, they tend to be rather dickish and demanding to those under their protection, such as Homestead.
- Iron Lady: Captain Somer, the Black Legion in charge of Homestead. She is very stern and has a no-nonsense attitude.
- Blind Seer: The Coven Witch Ragia is blind because she and other witches dared to summon the Witches Gods. Despite this, she has the ability of foresight.
- Enemy Mine: Before the start of the game, the Luminari have been hunting down the Coven for a very long time. With the Grim Dawn, Creed ask that you seek their help to save Malmouth and Ulgrim.
- Sole Survivor: Ragia is the only one left alive of the Witches that summoned the Witch Gods.
- Absurdly Spacious Sewer: The Resistance's HQ is located in Malmouth's sewers. The room they use is very large and house several refugees.
- Broken Pedestal: Downplayed. Everyone in the Resistance greatly admire Korrinia for her fighting and leadership skills. If you reveal to them that she is an Aetherial, they are shocked and angry. Ultimately, they grudgingly choose to let her continue leading the Resistance because of her past deeds. They also think they wouldn't stand a chance against the Aetherials without her.
- Irony: The heroic leader of the Resistance is revealed to be an Aetherial.
- La Résistance: The last holdings of humanity within Malmouth.
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: If Anasteria is still alive, she eventually reveals that Korrinia, the Resistance's leader, is like her: an Aetherial who chose to betray her kind and side with humanity.
The main antagonists of the game and the perpetrators of the fateful event known as the Grim Dawn (which they call "the Glorious Dawn"). A race of incorporeal beings determined to take over Cairn. Long before the events of the game, they were the servants of the primordial gods, whose lust for power and envy for each other drove them to war. In the aftermath of the conflict, the servants were punished for obeying their masters by being stripped of their physical forms and banished to the Aether-Realm. But when the first human arcanists started to meddle with the aether plane, the aetherials saw the opportunity to raise in power once again...
Tropes applying to the Aetherials in general
- Aliens are Bastards: They're the closest thing to aliens in this setting, and are undeniably malicious.
- Becoming the Mask: A side-effect of possessing humans for some aetherials is that they might take the traits and tendencies of their hosts. This can result in particulary vicious and sadistic aetherials like Warden Krieg or compassionate individuals like Anasteria and Korrinia. Oddly enough, one missive from an aetherial states that they should start calling him by his human name and no longer by his true aetherial name, and all indications are that they sincerely identify as their human hosts' name too, despite considering their human host's mind, identity, and soul completely devoured.
- Body Horror: They tend to evoke this in the humans they possess. The Fleshwarped enemies you meet early on resemble mutants more than they do humans, while enemies you meet in the expansion barely look like they ever were human. That's not getting into some of their bosses. The Vanguard takes this Up to Eleven.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Originally they fell under this, but an Aetherial you can help in the Expansion notes that many of them have become sadistic after possessing violent humans.
- The Chessmaster: The Aetherials has been orchestrating the events of the Grim Dawn since many years. They started possessing many powerful and influential people, which allowed them to do such things as disarm armies, weaken defenses and isolate cities, all in preparations for the great invasion.
- Demonic Possession: Aetherials can possess any living being, from hounds to trolls and humans, and even possess dead bodies. It's noted that dead bodies make poor-quality hosts, though.
- Elite Army: The Aetherial Vanguard, a new caste of Aether Corruption Super Soldiers handcrafted by the Master of Flesh to crush all remaining human resistance.
- Fighting a Shadow: Killing an Aetherial in the physical realm will simply banish it back to the Aether.
- Glowing Eyes: Humans possessed by Aetherials have green glowing eyes. However, they can revert to normal looking eyes when needed to avoid suspicion.
- Greater-Scope Villain: The Circle of Five. A group of Aetherial that seem to be behind all the invasion of Cairn. We only learn of their existence through missives sent to the Aetherials in Malmouth.
- Me's a Crowd: An Aetherial hero is called Mesmer and has the ability to clone itself.
- No Name Given: A missive indicates that they have individual names when it orders other Aetherials to refer to him by his human name from now on instead of his Aetherial name. But you only ever know the named Aetherials by the names of their human hosts. There is never even a hint of what Aetherial's actual name looks, sounds, or is spelled like.
- Not Using the "Z" Word: A justified example; the corpses raised up by them aren't undead, just puppets possessed by Aetherials.
- Oculothorax: Some Aether Corruptions are this, floating spheres with giant eyes randomly spread in their bodies. They come in many variety from Corruptions, Overseers, Overminds to Mindragers.
- Pragmatic Villainy: Aetherials are against torturing and tormenting humans for the sake of it, not because they care about them, but because they consider it a waste of time and resources.
- Shoot the Mage First: Slay the Aetherial mages first if you want to live longer.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Aetherials can be repelled with salt as coming in contact with it cause them great pain. Aetherial Vanguards seem to suffer less from it.
The first Aetherial commander you encounter, who has possessed the former Warden of the Devil's Crossing Prison.
- Arc Villain: He's the one behind all the chaos you see in Act 1.
- Back from the Dead: He returns in Ashes of Malmouth with a new body as one of Theodin's generals.
- Sequential Boss: After defeating him once, he fully sheds his human disguise, and becomes far more dangerous.
- Wake-Up Call Boss: Unless you stumble upon either of the optional bosses, everything in Act 1 is simple enough for a new player. Krieg on the other hand can dish out a ton of damage in a short time, close the distance between you incredibly quickly, and has a small arena. It's far better to retreat from some of his attacks than try and tank them, something you'll need to know for the rest of the game. And on top of all that, he has two forms.
Theodin Marcell, the Master of Flesh
The commander aetherial behind the operations in Malmouth, in possession of an aristocrat surgeon.
- Big Bad: Of the Ashes of Malmouth expansion.
- Bullet Hell: You have to dodge multiple aether projectiles fired in several directions.
- Evilutionary Biologist: He "improves" humanity through his wicked experiments to give aetherials the perfect hosts.
- Final Boss: Of the Ashes of Malmouth expansion.
- Flunky Boss
- Mad Doctor: His host was already an ammoral surgeon willing to do unethical things to achieve knowledge. He took this to the extreme with the horrific abomination he created in Malmouth.
- Sequential Boss: Theodin first start as a Stationary Boss, a multi-legged form and finally a flying form.
- Spider People: His second form has eight legs shaped like a spider.
Valdaran, the Storm Scourge
The Aetherials' Nemesis. A fleshwarped reanimator with lightning-based powers.
- Shock and Awe: Fitting for his title, Valdaran has many lightning-based attacks.
- Teleport Spam: He loves to teleport during battle. He even has a version of this where he swaps positions with you.
The Aetherial Vanguard's Nemesis.
- Death from Above: His meteor attack, which is extremely deadly.
- One-Hit Kill: the usual outcome of being hit by his meteor without extreme amounts of damage absorption
- Teleport Spam
Allostria, the Mind Thief
A high ranking Aetherial with a deep connection to the Taken.
- Bonus Boss: Finding and defeating her is entirely optional, but doing so rewards you with some valuable insight on both the Taken and the Aetherials' ultimate plans.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Humanity wouldn't have a champion to fight back the invasion if Allostria didn't leave the Taken's body during his/her execution in the gallow, causing Bourbon to spare our protagonist's life. Even more, the aftereffects of the possession made the Taken powerful enough to take down the whole operation in Malmouth mostly by himself/herself in the first place.
- Small Role, Big Impact: She's essentially an optional Bonus Boss, but since she was the Aetherial who first possessed the Taken all the way back in Devil's Crossing, she pretty much indirectly caused the entire plot of the game.
- Smug Snake: Allostria think highly of herself and see you as nothing but an inferior life form unworthy her notice. Time to prove her wrong.
- This Cannot Be!: Her reaction when you slay her.
- Underestimating Badassery: She certainly thinks you can't beat her, easily ignoring the mountains of corpses you've been leaving in your wake.
A race of demonic creatures from the void, spawn of Ch'thon, the Dying God. Their ranks are also composed by the Bloodsworn, humans worshippers of Ch'thon.
Tropes applying to the Chthonians in general
- Blood Magic
- Cthulhumanoid: Ryloks
- Deader Than Dead: Cthonians killed on Cairn are simply banished back to the Void. The only way to kill them for good is to kill them in the Void itself.
- Eldritch Abomination
- Lightning Bruiser: Grava'Thul The Void Drinker, one of the hardest bosses in the whole game.
- Anti-Villain: It applies to some bloodsworn, who were just desperate people who joined the cult to get shelter and food, escaping from the unimaginable horrors of the Grim Dawn. Many of them ended believing what the cult professes.
- Apocalypse Cult
- Ax-Crazy: "Kill the non-believer!"
- Decapitated Army: In Ashes of Malmouth, with both Bloodlord Theonis and the Loghorrean dead, the Bloodsworn are in a complete state of disarray, with an unseen Grand Priest desperately trying to hold what remains of the cult together.
- I Did What I Had to Do: Some of the cultist you meet in the void say they only joined because they were desperate for food and shelter.
- Voice of the Legion: Their voices tend to be dark, deep and distorted, possibly a side effect of spending so much time around Cthonic corruption and magic.
Loghorrean, the Voice of Ch'thon
- Almighty Idiot: Despite being the Big Bad of the main game and the key to Cthon's resurrection, its all but stated that the Loghorrean is basically a demonic animal that's barely sentient, if even that.
- Big Bad: Of the main game.
- Combat Tentacles: When its not too busy throwing spells at you or summoning monstrosities, it will take the time to flay you with its tentacles.
- Deader Than Dead: Ashes of Malmouth reveals that the Taken defeating it merely banished it back to the Void, where Ulgrim finished it off.
- Extra Eyes: It has four visible eyes.
- Final Boss: Of the vanilla game.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: It has many sharp teeth in its many mouths.
- Stationary Boss: It's incapable of moving, but with all its immense powers it doesn't need to.
- Too Many Mouths: It has one large mouth with two rows of sharp teeth. Several smaller mouths are also located next to its head and at the end of two tentacles.
- Vagina Dentata: Its main mouth is shaped like this with several sharp teeth.
Benn'Jhar, the Colossal
The first Chthonian Nemesis, a gargantuan Obsidian Ravager.
Grava'Thul, the Voiddrinker
The second Chthonian Nemesis, a gigantic Rylok. Only spawns in certain Ashes of Malmouth locations.
- Cthulhumanoid: Like other Ryloks.
- Lightning Bruiser: Grava moves fast, hits like a truck and has lots of health.
- Painfully Slow Projectile: His Annihilation Orb moves incredibly slowly, but given if it hits you, you either get your buffs removed, or you get killed. Even if you survive it the loss of your buffs could mean you'd get killed anyways shortly after.
- Status-Buff Dispel: He can cast a nasty projectile that burns energy and dispels every buff on your character.
Tropes applying to Cronley's Gang as a whole
- Bit Part Bad Guys: The only time you fight them in great quantities is during Act 2, and they're virtually inconsequential to the main story.
- Body Horror: Cronley and some of his elite minions have infused themselves with Aether, which has given them unnatural, crystalline growths across their bodies.
- Les Collaborateurs: Unbeknownst to even his followers, Cronley has sold out to the Aetherials and is using a secret stash of Aether Crystals to convert members of the Gang into new soldiers for them.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Some gang members think Cronley has gone more insane than usual and tried to desert. Cronley has them imprisoned and you can choose to kill them or free them.
- Hufflepuff House: You have to deal with them in Act 2, but once you're done with them, they become irrelevant.
- In-Series Nickname: Some gang members have a nickname attached to their name like: "Moneybags" Martin, Leander "Blackwater" Greene, Igor "The Brawler" .
- More Criminals Than Targets: Probably a case of Gameplay and Story Segregation, but Cronley's Gang is ridiculously numerous for a band of thieves and murderers, what makes one wonder how do they sustain themselves just through robbery and slavery, specially in a world where civilization has collapsed.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: The tallest and baddest of all the gang.
- Ax-Crazy: He was already condemned for two counts of murder before the Grim Dawn. He is a sadist and take delight in harming others, either they be innocents and authority-figures. Infusing with the Aether crystal seem to have made him worse.
- Bad Boss: Darius Cronley isn't exactly a model citizen. He doesn't treat his men with care and punish anyone who question his orders.
- Big Bad Wanna Be: Cronley has grand plans to conquer Devil's Crossing and torturing its people. However, this pale compared to the Aetherials and Chthonians who plot to conquer or destroy the world respectively. Cronley's gang is hopelessly small compared to legions of Aetherials, Chthonians, Beasts and Undead who control much larger territories. This probably motivate him to join the Aetherials to get a bigger share of the pie.
- Body Horror: Cronley allowed himself to be incrusted with Aether crystals, giving him new powers and increasing his strength, but also turning his body into a monstrosity.
- Blood Knight: He can't do anything without violence or injuring others.
- Evil Laugh
- Flunky Boss: You never fight him alone. He has Aether crystals and summoned creatures fighting alongside him. Sometimes, Hero monsters are also present.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Cronley was just a petty leader of thugs. When civilization collapsed, nothing stopped him from reorganizing his gang into a powerful band of raiders, extortionists, murderers and rapists.
- Sadist: Cronley's enjoy inflicting pain to others and doesn't care about his own men. When you mention Elsa to him, he fantasizes about many cruel things he wish he could have done to her.
Fabius "The Unseen" Gonzar
The Nemesis of Cronley's Gang. A former Nightblade that went rogue and ended as Cronley's best assassin and secret weapon.
- Eyepatch of Power: He wears one on his right eye, and he's the most powerful boss that Cronley's Gang has to offer.
- The Kingslayer: He used to be a Nightblade under the service of a noble house, but he grew tired of the political intrigues between the noble families and ended up murdering his own masters before getting captured by the First Blade.
- Mirror Boss: He can be this against Nightblade characters. Almost everyone of his skills comes from that mastery.
- Professional Killer: Very fitting for a former Nightblade.
- That One Attack: Or rather That one Weapon. Given that Fabius can spawn wielding epic and legendary weapons, one weapon players dread seeing him equipped with is the Notched Bone of a Thousand Deaths, a weapon that has a proc skill that synergizes incredibly well with his attacks and easily inflicts a One-Hit Kill.
- Arch-Enemy: While they despise all the living, they hold a special enmity towards the Rovers.
- Be Careful What You Wish For: They abducted and tortured Urubooruk for his secret of immortality, and he indeed gave it to them...but left out a few key details.
- And I Must Scream: The Undead are incapable of moving on to the afterlife and are driven mad by their condition.
- Dem Bones: Skeletons are always found in great numbers and come in a various types, from lowly warriors to revenants and spellcasters.
- Elite Mooks: The Revenants, coming in the variety of Knights, Storm Revenant, Flame Revenant and Frost Revenant. They not only possess buffs and debuffs, they are more durable and pack quite a punch in groups.
- Mummy: The mummies are no different from their usual portrayal in various media, except for disgusting maggots that spawn and attack you when they die.
- Our Ghosts Are Different: The vast majority of ghosts attack you on sight because they hate your guts for being alive. You can meet friendly ghosts NPC, but they are very rare.
- Our Ghouls Are Creepier: Ghouls are mostly found in desecrated tombs. They love to inflict bleeding damage.
- Shoot the Medic First: Kill the Skeleton Priests first if you don't want them to undo your work.
- Ultimate Blacksmith: Deep within the Necropolis, you can find an Undead blacksmith who is not only friendly, but is unique in that he can convert your excess rare Aetherial or Cthonian crafting components (Tainted Brain Matter and Blood of Cthon, respectively), into their opposite counterpart.
Moosilauke, the Chillwind
The Undead Nemesis.
Tropes applied to Beasts in general
- All Trolls Are Different: Big, ugly, dirty, club-wielders. They also have shamans and gunners. Trolls have been around for a long time and are known to kidnap women in order to breed half-trolls. With Grim Dawn, the Aetherials empowered and enslaved many of them into their army.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: The game has different kind of giant bugs looking out to eat you. Some of them are colonial insects and live in a hive.
- Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: Yetis are found in the north and they pack they quite a punch with their fists and cold attacks. The Leafmanes are the same, except they have poison attacks and live in the swamps.
- Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Sandclaws and moltenclaws are raptor-like dinosaurs.
- Evil Is One Big, Happy Family: While the other enemy factions share the same goals and make sense to work as a pack, Beasts occupy many different species that seem to have no problem cooperating to try and kill you.
- Eviler Than Thou: Are the victim of this by the Aetherials, who begin using them as hosts by the mid-game.
- Full-Boar Action: Boars in this game are not recognizable because of the mutation their endured. They are very large, sport giant tusks and have armored bodies.
- Giant Mook: The behemoth variants of the Grobles. Compared to their diminutive counterparts, the Behemoths are far bigger and taller than you.
- Giant Spider: Giant spiders are frequent enemies. While they can throw poison at you, they can close on you fast. They can also slow you down with their sticky webs.
- Harping on About Harpies: Harpies are children born under the Arkovian curse that were born as such then left to die by their parents. They seem to posses biological immortality due to the fact these were children left to die of exposure to the elements, yet they lived on to become what you face in the game.
- Kraken and Leviathan: Kra'vall, Ancient of the Waters, although it lurks in the Ugdenbog swamps rather than the ocean. Somehow, the Sliths worship it as a god.
- Man-Eating Plant: Those Carnivorous Plants are very big and very numerous. You'll find them in the expansion.
- The Morlocks: The Trogs. They are are Gollum-like creatures that live underground, complete with bald head and long arms. They fight with weapons and magic however.
- Non-Indicative Name: Raptors are not dinosaurs. They are flying creatures that belong to the Riftspawn race.
- Our Goblins Are Different: The goblin-like Grobles. They have a tribal lifestyle and have been raiding the empire long before the Grim Dawn hit Cairn. They come in different sizes, some of them being smaller than the PC while others are giant-sized behemoths.
- Our Gryphons Are Different: The gryphons dwell in the desert and look for unsuspected preys, namely: you.
- Raptor Attack: Dinosaurs similar to raptors exists, but they are referred as sandclaws and moltenclaws. They live in the desert and the Infernal Wastes respectively. Watch out, they can leap and close the distance between you and them.
- Snake People: The Slith. Their lower body is that of a snake and the upper body is reptilian with two arms.
- Spider Swarm: Not only do giant spiders attack in large groups, they also have specialized melee and ranged units.
- Tyrannosaurus rex: Some bosses are T-Rex-like dinosaur.
Kupacabra, the Endless Menace
The Beast Nemesis.
Monstrous creatures coming from the Eldritch Realm, servants of Korvaak. The faction also includes an army of humans loyal to the god.
- Animated Armor: This faction make use of many animated armors of different sizes and powers.
- Fallen Hero: A good number of them, specifically the more humanoid ones, are former members of Kymon's Chosen twisted after Korvaak came calling for Father Kymon to uphold his end of their bargain. Of course, given what Kymon's Chosen are like, calling them "heroes" may be a bit of a stretch.
- Golem: There are multiple type of Golems. While they are very slow, they are highly resistant and hit really hard.
- Humanoid Abomination: Korvaak's ascended are humans who got transformed into huge and grotesque creatures by Korvaak's powers.
- Living Statue: The Korvan animated statues when you get too close to them. They are actually possessed by eldritch spirits which you must defeat after you destroy the statues.
- Our Gargoyles Rock: Hostile winged creatures described as gargoyles, except we don't see them turn to stone.
- Our Gryphons Are Different: Of the living statue variety. They can still fly despite their massive weight and land next to you.
- Was Once a Man: Korvaak's ascended were once humans. They are obese, hit really hard, deceptively fast, can cast meteor showers and have hook swords instead of hands.
A powerful servant of Korvaak.
- Fighting a Shadow: After defeating it you can go back to Kymon's studio in the Chosen's base (if you sided with the faction) and the Messenger will be there, telling you that you can't truly kill it.
- Mouth of Sauron: He is this for Korvaak.
- One-Winged Angel: His first form is just a floating ball of flame. Once you beat him, he turns into a giant gargoyle.
Kaisan, the Eldritch Scion
The Eldritch Horror Nemesis.
Other Potential Allied/Enemy Factions
- Action Girl: The Blade Maiden (the Chosen's elite unit) and the Iron Maiden (the Chosen's Nemesis Boss).
- Arch-Enemy: To the Order of Death's Vigil and the Chthonians.
- Broken Pedestal: In Forgotten Gods, you can send a defector of Kymon's Chosen to the base to spread the word that Kymon has lied to them and betrayed humanity by allying with Korvaak. The members of the order react with disgust and dissapointment to the news, although they affirm that they will keep fighting for humanity's sake as an army despite their order being based on a lie.
- Defector from Decadence: When you reach Act 7, you meet a group soldiers from Kymon's Chosen who abandon their post after finding out that Kymon has lied to them. They discovered that Empyrion wasn't the god they worshiped and Kymon wants to unleash Korvaak on the world.
- Evil Costume Switch: During Act 7, Kymon's Chosen become Korvaak's Chosen and they sport new uniforms.
- FaceHeel Turn: By the time of Forgotten Gods, all but a mere handful of them have been completely enthralled to Korvaak's will, including Kymon himself.
- Good Is Not Nice: While they fight for the good of world, they refuse to make any concessions with anything they perceive as evil, such the necromancers. They will resort to violence as the only means to achieve their goals.
- Hypocrite: Despite the Chosen having an irrationally hate of necromancers, they have exclusive gears that boost necromancer's skills.
The aforementioned leader of the Chosen.
- The Dragon: Father Kymon has become Korvaak's by the time of Forgotten Gods.
- I Did What I Had to Do: He tells you this when you confront him in the Tomb of the Eldritch Sun. Although Kymon admits that the price that Korvaak demands is very high, he affirms that it's the only way to defeat the forces of Ch'Thon.
- One-Winged Angel: At the start of his boss battle, Korvaak's influence turns him into a hulking monstrosity that can spit molten rocks from his chest.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Kymon made a deal with Korvaak, a malicious primordial god, in exchange for the power to fight back the Chthonians and the Aetherials, then he lied to his followers that they are serving Empyrion. Kymon admits that he has probably doomed himself by dealing with Korvaak and that its raise in power may pose a threat to Cairn in the future, but he expresses that he saw no other option considering the current desperate state Cairn is sunk in.
The Iron Maiden
Kymon's Chosen Nemesis.
- Action Girl
- Heroic Second Wind: Has Menhir's Will with the same activation mechanics as the Soldier.
- Mirror Boss: For Soldier characters. Almost all of her skills are from the Soldier Mastery.
- Stone Wall
- Why Won't You Die?: A very real problem for those with low damage output fighting against her, if you cannot kill her before the cooldown on her Menhir's Will refreshes she will heal ad infinitum.
- A Lighter Shade of Grey: The Order is way more tolerant and open-minded than Kymon's Chosen. They are willing to let an Inquisitor join their faction despite their history with the Luminari Order and understand that the grudges of the past don't matter too much when the world is at stakes. In contrast, the Chosen won't let you join them if you play as a necromancer.
- Arch-Enemy: To Kymon's Chosen and the Aetherials.
- I Warned You: If you sided with Kymon's Chosen in the base game, then when you encounter a camp of Order members during Forgotten Gods (by which point most of Kymon's Chosen have been corrupted by Korvaak), the Order members dryly remind you that they did try to warn you that Father Kymon couldn't be trusted.
- Necromancer: This is a whole faction of necromancers with undead summoning and cold related attacks.
Zantarin, the Eternal
The Order of Death's Vigil Nemesis.
- Short-Range Shotgun: His Signature Move is a burst of projectiles that is almost harmless at long distances but absolutely deadly in close range.
The leader and founder of the Order of Death's Vigil.
- The Atoner: He shows deep regrets for all the pain and suffering his quest for power and immortality caused through the centuries.
- Death Equals Redemption: Urubooruk gives his last strengths to remove the seal to allow the Taken to reach and defeat Korvaak
- The Ghost: The leader and founder of the Order, Urubooruk, is mentioned several times, but has yet to make an appearance in the game. As a subversion, he does show up in the second expansion.
- Really 700 Years Old: No one knows how old he is. He was around even before the fall of the civilization of Arkovia, which happened many centuries before the start of the game.
- Necromancer: The oldest and most powerful necromancer in the known history.
- No Body Left Behind: Urubooruk uses the last of his strength to break the seal that block the entrance of the Temple of the Eldritch Sun. His body vanishes afterwards, leaving only a pendant.
- Really Gets Around: Being immortal helped Urubooruk sired many children over the course of history.
- Tragic Keepsake: The only things that remains of him after dying is a pendant with the silhouette of a woman, implied to be his last wife and mother of Daila and Dravis. You can give it to a mournful Daila in the end of her questline.
- Was It Really Worth It?: For centuries, Urubooruk has stolen the souls of thousands to sustain his immortality. Over the years, guilt started to settle-in and he wondered if it was worth it.
- HeelFace Turn: The fondness and fascination that Anasteria developed for mankind led her to betray her race and help humanity.
- Insufferable Genius: She's very intelligent and knowledgeable of the Aetherials and how to deal with them. Too bad she's also a hard ass to deal with.
- The Power of Hate: If you decide to antagonize her, she will get stronger as you gain infamy reputation by killing her, eventually reaching Nemesis Status.
- Reformed, but Rejected: Despite saving many lives with her useful knowledge of the aetherials, the Black Legion doesn't trust her at all and would rather see her dead. The only thing preventing them from killing her are Creed's orders.
A seemingly benign village residing in the Ugdenbog that has miraculously survived the coming of the Aetherials and Cthonians. The truth, however, is that they are a splinter group of Wendigos and Wendigo Cultists who, unlike their savage kin, choose to live peacefully and civilized. That said, they are still firm followers of the Ravager, and thus are compelled to occasionally find hapless travelers to feed on...
- Affably Evil: They're quite polite and friendly for a cult of cannibals.
- A Lighter Shade of Grey: If you agree to work with them, when their leader reveals the town's true nature, he points out that even with their unapologetic cannibalism and worship of the Ravager, they are considerably more civil and open to friendship than their far more savage kin.
- "Blackmail" Is Such an Ugly Word: When you mentioned that Scorv tricked the people of Barrowholm into serving the Ravager, he retorted that "tricked" is such an ugly word.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: If you sided with him and gained enough reputation, Scorv Egdenor mentioned he was a just lost traveler in the swamp when he resorted to cannibalism to survive. The Ravager took notice of him and made him his pawn. Scorv then turned Barrowholm from a starving community into a thriving village by eating and sacrificing innocents travelers.
- Eldritch Abomination: If you reach the worst possible reputation with the Barrowholm, the cult will summon the manifestation of the Ravager himself: Reaper of the Lost. And it will hunt you down all over the Ugdenbog and the Gloomwald.
- I'm a Humanitarian: They eat humans to survive and to make offerings to the Ravager.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Scorv has normal looking eyes, but they permanently turn red when Ravager's summoning ritual is near to completion.
- Wendigo: The leader of the community is possessed by a powerful wendigo spirit.
Reaper of the Lost
Barrowholm's Nemesis. A lesser manifestation of the Ravager.
- Clipped-Wing Angel: It is a significantly weaker manifestation of the Ravager compared to the Physical God tier superboss it is normally. Given that Reaper of the Lost only shows up after antagonizing Barrowholm to the point of nemesis status, the implication is that it is a partial or failed manifestation of the Ravager.
Gods and other Deities
Bysmiel, Dreeg and Solael, a trio of powerful sorcerers who ascended to godhood and currently rule the Eldritch Realm.
- The Beastmaster: Bysmiel's specialty is summoning beasts to do her bidding.
- Deity of Human Origin: The three Witch Gods, Solael, Bysmiel and Dreeg were once humans before ascending to godhood. They have since ruled in the Eldritch realm and now have taken a greater interest in Cairn because of the Grim Dawn.
- Chromatic Arrangement: The three gods are color-coded like this:
- Red: Solael.
- Blue: Bysmiel.
- Green: Dreeg.
- Extra Eyes: The witch god Dreeg is said to be an unspeakable horror with thousands of lidless eyes.
- Good Is Not Nice: The three gods and their cults are the saviors of humanity, but they are not exactly benevolent. Solael is cruel and demand sacrifice from his followers. Bysmiel is a schemer and love manipulation. Dreeg seem to be more neutral.
- Hollywood Acid: Other than Extra Eyes, everything about Dreeg always involve acid attacks.
- Kill It with Fire: Solael is said to be master of eldritch fire, which combine fire and chaos damage.
- Sadist: Solael is the cruelest of the Three and demand sacrifices from his followers.
- Seers: Dreeg has many eyes and is said to be capable of seeing in the future and beyond the worlds.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: They originally were at war with each other, but eventually made a peace pact. In the present day, they still hate each other but they need each other and continue to stick to the peace pact, as none of them are individually strong enough to be a god by themselves.
- Two Guys and a Girl: Dreeg and Solael are males and Bysmiel is female. The backstory say that Solael and Bysmiel were once in a relationship, but chose to broke it off to pursue power for themselves.
- The Vamp: Bysmiel seduced Ulzuin as part of a larger plot to attain godhood.
- You Cannot Grasp the True Form: Gazing in Dreeg true form will drive you mad. Only one of the Coven survived this ordeal and she's a complete broken mess.
The God of Beasts, Protector of Nature and Guardian of the Rowhari.
- The Beastmaster: He can summon huge beasts to assist him in battle.
- Blue and Orange Morality: His motivations for things like allowing the Grim Dawn to happen and letting his people suffer are, as he puts it, beyond human comprehension.
- Deity of Human Origin: Allegedly subverted. He implicitly denies it while being insulted that you would think such a thing.
- Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: You can choose to fight Mogdrogen, which is a terrible idea (even the game will tell you how misguided that is). He's not bluffing when he tells you that he can crush you like an insect, and even the normal difficulty version of him is enough to wreck a fully leveled character.
- Expy: Of Silvanus from the Forgotten Realms with a dose of arrogance.
- God's Hands Are Tied: If questioned about why he let the Grim Dawn happen, he will respond that the events that devasted Cairn were set in march way before anyone, even the gods, could have foreseen them, and that trying to intervene in the aetherial-chthonian conflict is futile. He also explains to the Taken that a world that requieres constant intervention from the gods is just doomed to fail.
- Jerkass God: Downplayed. Mogdrogen is grateful enough to reward you for restoring his shrine, but ask the wrong question or doubt his power and he'll get unpleasant really quick, belittling you or threatening to squash you like a bug.
- Nature Spirit: He's Cairn's God of Beasts and Nature.
- Shock and Awe: He has some really nasty lightning attacks.
Ch'thon was an elder god that preceded the birth of mortals. His own children betrayed him and his blood was used to create worlds, including Cairn.
- And I Must Scream: He can not truly die and his discarded remains lie in the Void. Nonetheless, he can still feel the death and suffering of all mortals across the planes.
- The Ghost: He never made an appearance in the game. The only information we got from him is the description of his constellation.
The God of Light who purge the world of darkness and who many worship for guidance.
- Expy: He is an expy of Lathander. Both are sun gods and are a beacon of light for good. They also share a dislike of undead: the Light of Empyrion celestial power does extra damage to undead.
- Have You Seen My God?: If you ask the Avatar of Mogdrogen or Korvaak's messenger where the light god Empyrion is, they say they haven't heard of him in a very long time and may be dead. Complicating matters is Archon Barthollem, who claims that he still serves Empyrion.
- Hope Bringer: Everyone worship him because he is the protector of Cairn and the most powerful of all the gods.
A long forgotten primordial god who seeks to raise in power once again. He's the deity that Kymon's Chosen unknowingly worship.
- Big Bad: Of Forgotten Gods.
- Bullet Hell: Dodging projectiles from multiple direction is a popular event when fighting Korvaak.
- Driven to Villainy: Various notes reveal that Korvaak was a harsh, but fair god. When Dreeg, Bysmiel and Solael overthrew him, they took over the Eldritch realm and ascended to godhood in his place. That really, really pissed him off. He bid his time and once he returns, he will not only enact a cruel and terrible vengeance on the Three, but also on all mortals.
- Enemy Mine: His reason to assists Kymon is to keep Ch'thon's forces at bay while he recovers his powers.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Korvaak has a really deep and menacing voice.
- Final Boss: Korvaak is the final boss the Forgotten Gods expansion.
- Gods Need Prayer Badly: Like all gods, they need worshipers to sustain their divinity. After his fall, his worship wane and he was forgotten. The Grim Dawn allowed a desperate Kymon to restart his clergy and fuel his power under the false guise of Empyrion, the light god.
- God of Evil: He wasn't at first, but after his fall he definitely intent on becoming one.
- Walking Spoiler: All his tropes are hidden to avoid giving away the punchlines.
An evil Wendigo god who hungers for blood and is obsessed with consuming everything.
- Arch-Enemy: He is sworn enemies to the Chthonians because he believes they steal his preys from him.
- Expy: Serve as an Expy of Malar from the Forgotten Realms, although he is far more cruel and vicious.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Very deep and threatening voice.
- It's All About Me: The Ravager has no redeeming qualities and see everyone as nothing but pawns to be used or preys to hunt down.
- Jerkass Gods: The Ravager looks down on humans as nothing but food to be consumed. He is even more contemptious towards the Taken.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: With a name like "Ravager", what do you think? Yes! Run fast and don't ever look back!
- Wendigo: The evil god of wendigos.
The Master of the Crucible, a realm that exists outside of Cairn as we know it. The Taken is summoned by Lokarr to do battle for his amusement. Impress him with your combat prowess and be rewarded vast riches, or fail and know his scorn.
- And Your Reward Is Clothes: Defeating him in Ashes of Malmouth rewards you with 1 of 4 randomly dropped pieces of his armor. It acts as a new character accelerator as the full set gives a 40% boost to all experience gained.
- Badass Arm-Fold: Lokarr always has his arms crossed and is very much a badass. After all, he is a god and can kick your ass dead before you can blink.
- Bonus Boss: The hidden boss of the Ashes of Malmouth expansion.
- Combat Commentator: Acts as this when playing in the crucible. Either being impressed by or disparaging your performance.
- Jerkass Gods: One of the few in the game to avert this. Even though he can pluck you out of cairn at a whim, if you wish to leave his realm he does not attempt to stop you. Should you brave the entirety of the crucible his talk of rewarding you with vast riches is not an understatement, in particular completing the crucible on Gladiator rewards you with tens of thousands of iron and several legendary items. Even should you fall in battle in the crucible you still reap a modest reward for your time, though not as much as going the distance and completing it. However, he also likes to constantly mock your performance in the Crucible.
- This also extends to his boss battle in Ashes of Malmouth, where compared to the other superbosses Lokarr is pretty fair but tough, rather than having out and out tactics or abilities that need specific strategies or characters to overcome. Doing battle with Lokarr merely requires your build to be reasonably balanced and the real challenge is avoiding his more devastating attacks, and dealing with his flunkies as soon as possible.
- Physical God: Make no mistake when fighting him, even though he gives you a fair fight compared to others, you are fighting a god and he can hit just as hard as the other bosses of his caliber.
- Playing with Fire: He has a very strong penchant for using fire based attacks against you in his boss battle.