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Painkiller's Hell is a diorama of our species' capacity for self-destruction, an open-air museum in which every wicked deed, every cruelty, every occasion on which humans have displayed their ugliness is frozen in a drop of crystallized time. It is a bleak and empty place, the presence of the damned belied only by their invisible screams. Hell in Painkiller isn't some brimstony "look how scary!" environment, it's a ghastly exhibition of our abject and ongoing failure to become what God imagined we might one day become. Worse still is the revelation that Hell is a chronological succession of horrors, proving that humanity is not growing better or wiser, but more ugly and brutal. The deeper you go into Hell, the worse it gets, because the deeper you go, the more you learn about human beings. In short, the Hell of Painkiller is exactly what Hell would be like—not a dark reflection of Heaven, but a grim accounting of Earth.

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The Battleground is the embodiment of war, struggle and conflict. Philodox claim that every battle throughout history and prehistory, from savage Neolithic struggles against the cave bear through to 21st-century "ethnic cleansing" and gang wars, is reflected here in spirit. Within the Battleground, ephemeral spirits continually engage in battles that spiritually reflect past conflicts in the material world. The place itself is a military historian's dream and a sane being's nightmare. The entire realm is a vast war, or wars, or a series of battles representing every period known to man or shapeshifter. In one part of the realm, a legion of Romans might be "unleashing hell" on Teutonic barbarians; in another area, spirit reflections of Washington and Cornwallis might maneuver their troops, or the skies might shake as the Luftwaffe rains destruction on a spiritual counterpart of London. Then, too, the countless struggles meld together into one vast cauldron of strife. It is entirely possible to find Ottoman jannisaries, Greek hoplites, Napoleonic dragoons and Vietcong guerrillas battling with each other - or against each other, or both.
Werewolf: The Apocalypse - Umbra: The Velvet Shadows
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