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Roleplay / Dark Before The Dawn

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Dark Before The Dawn is an ongoing epic forum RP on the There Will Be Brawl forum. The members of the forums play themselves; ordinary humans who have been summoned against their wills to the High Fantasy world of Dragnia, told they are The Chosen Ones and are expected to fulfill a heroic destiny.

The world is divided into two regions: the Northlands, which is split into 8 independent city states, and the mysterious Southlands. An evil dark force, the Nameless Army, under the ruthless Big Bad- the High Commander- is sweeping its way into the Northlands, commencing a blitzkreig and slaughtering its way through the city states. Unable to form a coherent defence on their own, some have turned to an ancient prophecy that fortells that heroes from another world will arrive in their hour of need and drive back the forces of darkness. They ended up with the forumites instead.


The RP focusses on the adventures of the forumers as they travel the land, attempting to unite the city states and drive back the Nameless Army. But with shenanigans, trying to control their new powers, their own slew of personal drama and angst and the threat of perma-death, will our heroes overcome their challenges and save the world?

This ain't no game, after all.


  • Anyone Can Die: Played straight. Anyone can die in Dragnia. Once more, this ain't no game. Spont died in the very first encounter, even; cut down while heartily charging forward to attack.
    • Subverted in that characters die when the players cease activity.
  • Badass Long Robe: Quaetam and Ansem. Avalanche doesn't count, that's a dress.
  • Badass in Distress: Perry, after being kidnapped by Ashvald.
  • Barred from the Afterlife: The remaining dragons voluntarily trapped their souls in the mortal realm to prevent the murderer of their kind achieving daemonhood.
  • Barrier Warrior: Avalanche can summon up shields of holy magic.
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  • Battle of Wits: The situation in Leknaat between the Hierophant and Ashvald until the Champions get involved.
  • Berserk Button: Don't touch one of Perry or Raya's friends.
  • The Berserker: Raya is slowly becoming one.
  • The Chessmaster: The Hierophant, Quaetam, as it were.
    • Also Ashvald, through his future-seeing slug demon.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: ANSEM. Can't enter a town without trying to enter all its NPCs.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Sahrimnir
  • Les Collaborateurs: Meneon, and oh how obvious it was.
  • Collateral Angst: Several examples, mostly centered around characters' deaths.
    • About five characters have a subplot revolving around how useless or helpless they feel, or how they can't protect those they care about.
    • Weldar's death was particularly notorious in this aspect. Coupled with the Hierophant turning out to be Quaetam, this caused Avalanche, Camilla, Raya, and Quaetam himself to sink into despair.
      • This was especially appropriate for Quaetam however: he killed him.
      • Perry outright ragequit the party before being captured by the demon-worshipping High Justice Ashvald, leading to a rescue mission.
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  • Combination Attack: Avalanche and Sahrimnir combine their attacks whilst fighting a demon and unleash a HOLY LAZOR.
  • Convenient Slow Dance: Whilst Raya and Ansem are drinking at a bar during the festival a slow dance starts playing. Ansem takes the opportunity to force her to dance.
  • Cooldown Hug: How Fedaykin calms down a berserk Raya.
  • Dance Battler: Fedaykin knows capoeira
  • Dead All Along: Technically the von Carstein family Turns out they're actually vampires.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: "With those words, Sahrimnir again charged forward with his charged sword and charged the demon."
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: The eruption of essence from the dead Shu'Sharradin inflicts a vision of the future on everyone. What they see isn't pleasant.
  • Elephant Graveyard: The Isle is a dragon's graveyard.
  • Fantastic Racism: The city state of Leknaat is extremely intolerant of the non-human races, to the point of calling them sub-humans and treating them like animals.
    • The faefolk of Sylvania are mentioned to be the same against the non-fae, though they haven't been encountered yet.
  • Fantasy World Map: Lovingly hand-drawn by the GM herself and coloured in by Perry.
  • Fauns and Satyrs: Perry
  • Five-Man Band: The leaders of the Nameless Army:
  • Fog of Doom: The fog shrouding the Isle is actually the graveyard's magical defence, killing intruders with illusions and driving them mad from terror.
  • Forceful Kiss: Ansem does this to Raya as a way of confessing he likes her.
  • Foreshadowing: There's some of this in nearly every one of Raya's posts. Nobody notices.
  • Full-Frontal Assault: Technically Perry. Luckily he's censored by a lot of fur, otherwise being charged by a giant rampaging goatman would be a LOT more terrifying.
  • Fully-Embraced Fiend: Michael Vinters likes being a werewolf.
  • Genocide Backfire: Kilranirax attempted to wipe out his entire race to gain ultimate power. The last few bound their souls to the mortal plane, preventing him from completing his ritual and causing him to be dragged into the daemonic realms instead.
  • Glowing Eyelights of Undeath: Fedaykin.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: Played with. Rather than having two angels, Sahrimnir has got five representing Justice, Compassion, Self-preservation, Curiosity and Fun respectively.
  • Heel–Face Turn: The Hierophant, although he wasn't evil to begin with.
  • Heroic BSoD: Quaetam after Perry bursts in with Weldar's dead body.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Vandir stays behind to try to fight Victor and fend off the Nameless Army so the Champions can escape.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The entire city state of Sylvania is closed off to the non-fae and few (if any) know what goes on inside its borders.
  • Horror Hunger: When Fedaykin's body sustains serious damage the instinctual Hunger takes over and he goes into a feeding frenzy to heal himself. Being undead, that feeding frenzy tends to involve live human beings...
  • Identity Absorption: The identities of people Fed has consumed remain in the deep recesses of his mind.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Quaetam did some pretty terrible things as the Hierophant, only with the intention of gaining enough power to stop the greater evil of the Army.
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Raya tries this when Fedaykin gives into the Hunger. It's less effective than a severed human arm.
  • Invisibility: Snake's powers.
  • Ironic Fear: Sahrimnir is terrified of heights. Sahrimnir has got wings.
  • I See Dead People: Requiem has the ability to see ghosts.
  • Jumped at the Call: Sahrimnir at first did this when the forumers were told they were supposed to save the world.
  • Lampshade Hanging: The entire bloody game.
  • Last Stand: The Highland army make one after liberating a camp from the Army's clutches, only to find it was only a scouting outpost and the main force of the Army is heading straight at them. They stand their ground to defend their homeland to the last. We later see the aftermath of the battle. Absolutely nothing survived.
  • Light 'em Up: Sahrimnir's powers.
  • Love Confession: During the festival Ansem confesses to Raya that he has feelings for her.
  • Love Hurts: Poor poor Ansem.
  • Mama Bear: Raya said she'd get the others back home safely, and she takes her job very seriously.
  • Manipulative Bastard:
    • Quaetam, again, did this to Damian, and then to Claudius, using each of them and playing on their weaknesses and emotions to get his way.
    • Ernstrad as well.
  • Mugging the Monster: A random thug attempts to mug Raya at the festival. Assaulting the currently emotionally-fragile berserker turned out to be a very bad idea indeed.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Quaetam on realising he's killed his close friend Weldar without realising who he was.
  • Naked on Arrival: Technically Perry.
    • "What was going on here? What happened to the class room? What was with his legs?... WHERE THE HELL WAS HIS PENIS?!"
  • Never Found the Body: Spont's body was tossed off a cliff. Turns out he's still 'alive', except without a physical body in the demonic realms.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: Werewolves are intelligent and capable of speech when transformed. They still enjoy ripping off faces though.
  • Pointy Ears: Relmitos is an elf after all...
  • Poke in the Third Eye: Done quite literally and with extreme overkill when Avalanche and Sharimnir combine their powers to blast the future-seeing demon Shu'Sharradin's head in half with a holy lazor.
  • Power Copying: Requiem is able to absorb part of the lifeforce of his dead friends and gain a watered down version of their main ability.
  • Professional Gambler: Requiem
  • Rescue Arc: Perry gets kidnapped, leading the party to gatecrash a party and kick demon butt to save him.
  • Running Gag: The mafia game the forumers were all playing before they got sucked into the world.
  • Screw Destiny: Quaetam did exactly this upon his entry into the world.
    • Potentially subverted, however: Quaetam now finds himself with the Champions anyways, helping them to unite the city states and thus, it can be argued, fulfilling his prophecy.
  • Shapeshifting: Camilla. Also hinted that Raya can do this to a lesser extent.
  • Shot in the Ass: Snake by Omicron.
  • Shout-Out: There are a hell of a lot of references to other RPGs scattered about.
    • Also other video games.
    • And Movies.
    • And an occasional trope or two.
  • Spinoff: The mafia game based on the RP.
    • The High Commander role won.
  • Spirit Advisor: TD rescued a spirit, Aurora, from Ashvald's mansion and she now accompanies him.
  • Spot of Tea: Raya drinks an awful lot of tea, mainly after stressful situations. She's not afraid to admit she's a stereotype.
  • Technical Pacifist: Snake hasn't killed a single person. The only time he came close- stabbing the Hierophant- he was revulsed by his actions.
    • Avalanche never killed a person, but this might have more to do with his role as obligatory white mage.
  • Tempting Fate: "And after all," Raya cracked a weak smile "Things surely can't get any worse."
  • The Dead Can Dance: Quite quite literally in Fed's case.
  • The Ferry Man: Requiem, having won a ship during a poker game.
  • The Paladin: Sahrimnir's class of choice.
  • The Prophecy: Apparently great warriors from another world were foretold to save Dragnia. Rather than wait to see if it would come to pass the inhabitants cut some corners and forcibly summoned them instead.
  • The Teetotaler: Sahrimnir, Minby and TD.
  • The Undead: Fedaykin didn't arrive in the world fully alive...
  • Tin Tyrant: The High Commander is clad entirely fullplate that covers him head to foot, including an ornate draconic helmet.
  • Treacherous Advisor Ashvald
  • Un-Canceled: Rumored to be coming back with a few new cast members before the end of 2016
  • Überwald: The city state of Mousillon.
  • Warmup Boss: BREAD, who will clearly return to win the game.
    • Meneon as well, although he was certainly capable.
  • Whip It Good: Relmitos' weapon of choice is a physics-defying whip.
  • White Mage: Avalanche.
  • Winged Humanoid: Sahrimnir and the Wyndian race.

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