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jungle, protector

Fortress

Fortress
Fortress
‘GIFT-WRAPPED’ FORTRESS
‘GIFT-WRAPPED’ FORTRESS

jungle, protector

Fortress

This Halcyon Well guardian is a snarling, frightening sight in the jungle. He stalks prey, closes in with teammates, flanks targets and creates challenging, multi-front confrontations. Stay near your allies and bite and claw your way to kills.

Fortress Stats

Hit Points(HP)

658 (+82)

HP Regen

4.30 (+0.51)

Energy Points(EP)

300 (+15)

EP Regen

1.56 (+0.15)

Weapon Damage

80 (+7.00)

Attack Speed

1 (+0.04)

Armor

20 (+6)

Shield

20 (+5)

Attack Range

1.8

Movement Speed

3.4

Abilities

Play
Packmates

Heroic Perk

Packmates
Expand

When Fortress is near an allied hero, he will move faster after 1 second. He will maintain this move-speed bonus so long as he’s alongside any allied hero.

Play
Truth of the Tooth
Truth of the Tooth
Expand

Fortress marks the target enemy as prey and his next basic attack becomes a short-range lunge. Fortress and allied heroes gain move speed when moving toward anything marked as prey.

Play
Law of the Claw
Law of the Claw
Expand

Fortress claws his target for crystal damage and causes it to bleed. Bleeding targets take 25 +15% of crystal power as damage every second. Attacks from Fortress and his allies have +10% lifesteal against bleeding targets and increase bleeding by one stack. Upon reaching 6 stacks, the target is dealt a burst of damage based on its max health, is slowed by 30% and receives mortal wound (-33% healing).

Play
Attack of the Pack [Ultimate]
Attack of the Pack [Ultimate]
Expand

Fortress howls, gaining increased health and attack speed and calls to him a pack of wolves. Each pack wolf seeks out a different enemy hero. These wolves apply bleeding with their basic attacks.

Skins

Rona Lore Conclusion: North is Always Forward Lore
Rona Lore Conclusion: North is Always Forward
Chapter 5

Rona Lore Conclusion: North is Always Forward

 

Rona follows Fortress into the Great Oak…


NORTH IS ALWAYS FORWARD

Rona sniffed the air, searched the empty sled, dug into the fresh tracks, then peered into the tangles of The Great Oak. Buried in the winding branches, she caught the old druid’s eye.

She startled and skidded backward. Without the vision of the poisoned acorns, the druid appeared old as he’d been, but his eyes and complexion were empty and mealy gray.

“Oh, no.” Realization smacked into her. “No, no.” She dropped her pack and drew out her axes, War Screech and Whistle. She chopped at a branch that held the druid’s throat fast, then another, splitting through branch after branch while her eyes welled up. “No!” But green shoots burst out and turned into new hard branches that wrapped the old druid up all the tighter. “Stupid tree!” she shouted, tears freezing into icicles on her cheeks.

Rona glared at the tree, wiped her nose on her cloak and huffed out a resolute breath. “Welp,” she said to no one, “north is always forward.” She hooked her axes back on her belt and stuck her head into a gaping hollow in the tree. The spiraling dark yawned up.

“Hallo?” she called, and her greeting echoed back. There was nothing left to do but climb inside.

Down and down and down she went into the enveloping black, slipping on moss and jutting roots, butt-bumping down. Down into the heat, so that she threw away her cloak. Down into the thin air that made her drowsy, though she napped only a nightmarish hour at a time, stairs jutting into her sides and knees, before continuing down and down and down, until, somehow, she found she was going up. As bad as down had been, up was worse. She sweated and grumbled and drank the last of her waterskin. Up and up and up, she counted the steps to keep her mind on something.

Just before she would have gone mad, she saw a thin light high above. With a last great effort, she climbed toward it. The light came from another hollow, and she tumbled out of it into the other half of the world.

The jungle air felt like drowning to breathe. The sunlight was orange instead of the white-gray she had always known; the trees burst with colorful leaves and flowers. She climbed a set of stone steps, axes at the ready, her tongue sticking to the dry roof of her mouth, past crumbling stone statues and ancient architecture no longer loved. Echoing from somewhere unseen, a merchant called out his wares. At the top of the stairs, the stone path widened into a courtyard. In the middle, a great crystal hung suspended in the air over a glowing well. Her mouth opened and closed like a fish; she was so stunned that she almost missed the wolf pack that surrounded the well.

The alpha was almost as tall on all fours as she on two. She gripped her axes, glaring, but the alpha’s hackles didn’t rise. “Ah, good,” growled the alpha. “The druid hoped you would follow.”

War Screech and Whistle dropped loose in her fingers. “And who are you?”

“I am Fortress,” he replied.

You are the fortress?”

“And you are Rona the Berserker.”

“I am,” she said, and as if he had reminded her of herself, she squared her shoulders.

“Then come with me,” said Fortress. “There is fighting to be done.”


READ MORE OF THE OLD WORLD LORE:

Rona vs Skvader
Chapter 4

Rona vs Skvader

Fortress Lore Conclusion: The Great Oak
3

Fortress Lore Conclusion: The Great Oak

Wolf Hero Lore: Destruction of the Temple
2

Wolf Hero Lore: Destruction of the Temple


A dire wolf raced out of the temple’s fourth circle, tongue lolled out to one side, panting, exhausted terror in his eyes, his thick fur matted with dried blood. His back legs were caked up to the stifles in red loamy mud; he’d kicked free in time to get bit in the muzzle by something venomous. He skidded to a stop where mud met ice, into the forelegs of the alpha, his eyes down, unsure whether to be more frightened of what he’d run from or what he’d run into. The ground rumbled, the ice cracking outward in long lines. The alpha’s hackles rose, ears twitching at the sound of his pack howling, whining and yipping in pain. He could name every one of those sounds: son, daughter, mate, packmate, friend.

After the first quake, the alpha had inspected the inner circles of the ancient temple, his nails tapping on the ice, his breath fogging in the frozen air. A foreign scent bothered at his nose. The tremors intensified, the scent grew stronger and the pack’s restless whines and tail-chasing had to be contained with barked orders. Within hours, the ice in the first circle melted into pools of water that the ground drank up with greedy thirst. The second and third circles, once ice and brick, became mud. The scent choked every inhale, and the constant shaking set the wolves to howling.

Then, the vines appeared.

They were like nothing the wolves had seen. They whipped out from the mud, piercing blind in all directions. They wrapped around the temple pillars, crumbling them to gravel. The pack tore them apart, but within minutes the thick stems grew anew. The well itself, once richly decorated with sculpture and carvings, became nothing but a dark hole in the ground leaking putrid air. The inner sanctums turned to rubble.

Eggs frozen for untold millennia bubbled up from the mud and broke open, spilling out long-toothed reptiles. The wolves went to battle, ears flat, snarling, leaping in fast and retreating in the way of the hunt until the blood of their prey dribbled out in thick clots that fed the carnivorous mud. But the creatures could not be contained – and the surviving reptile hatchlings grew larger than the wolves. Everything birthed in the fertile mud was bloodthirsty and more dangerous than anything the wolves had hunted before. The mud itself was an enemy, drinking the wolves into itself, forcing them farther and farther back from the well.

They might have fought back the horde if not for the insects. Clouds of bloodsucking mosquitoes and hives of venomous wasps burst upward. Crimson ants burrowed into the wolves’ fur and chomped into their belles. The pack snapped their teeth into the stinging swarms to no avail, bit into their own itchy hindquarters, limped on poisoned limbs.

The guarding of the Halcyon Well had been the alpha’s vocation since the temple had been built, from materials found nowhere near the frozen tundra, by a people whose lineage had died out before their story could be told. It was unthinkable to abandon it. Yet without a pack, an alpha commands nothing.

“Get the others out,” he snarled at the beaten-down wolf, who turned without protest and ran again into the doom. The alpha turned snout to the moon.

“Old friend,” he growled into the empty air, “I have need of you.”

Then, Fortress let loose a wild howl that carried for miles.

To be continued…

 

New Hero Lore: ‘A Story for Everything’
1

New Hero Lore: ‘A Story for Everything’

The new wolf hero is coming to the Fold. Read his lore now, and look for his name hidden in the story.


The berserker dropped to the ground between the fire and the old druid, axes clinking at her belt, a caribou hock in one fist. Behind them, the others daubed the wattled longhouse walls with dung and straw where freezing wind whistled through.

“It’s explanation time, old man,” she demanded. She took a big bite of the meat, leaving strips dangling, and pointed the hock at the druid. “That’s the fifth earth tremor in an hour. It’s knocking holes out of the walls now. I know you have some old story for every little thing that happens.”

“There is a truth for everything,” he corrected in a low drone. “Beneath us slumbers Gudmund, the giant elder, son of Gunnr the Great Oak, and brother of Gymir, his bitter rival.” His fingers danced like punctuation in the firelight. “The brothers’ war grew so violent that nothing could live among the ruins of their hatred, so Gunnr sang a song to make them dream, then buried them deep underground, one in each hemisphere of the world. Gudmund was banished to the northern half, and Gymir was banished to the south…”

“Wait. Gymir was the father?”

“Gymir is the brother of Gudmund and the son of Gunnr,” groaned the old druid. “Pay attention.”

“I am.”

“Gunnr transformed herself into the Great Oak that spears through the world, its branches growing on either side, its roots holding her sons captive. Where their breath seeps through to the surface, there are life-giving wells from which can be drawn great power.”

“I will find one of those!” the berserker announced, her mouth full. “The west people wouldn’t hunt at our borders if we had ancient power-breath.”

“The nearest well is at the center of a temple, guarded by the enormous Fortress, so that humankind will not kill itself with the power therein.”

The berserker gnawed at the meat, her brain clicking through calculations. “I could scale a fortress,” she mumbled.”

The old druid chuckled. “Do not wander away with your mind.  You must learn this story well, for it is you who will tell it after I’ve gone.”

The berserker snapped up her eyes to the old druid. “Where do you think you’re going?”

There was a long silence, during which the berserker did not breathe, until it was apparent that the old druid had nodded off into sleep. The berserker poked him in the shoulder; the old druid snorted and resumed: “Gudmund the Elder stirs. His breath comes stronger through the well. The ice has melted, and it is this elder’s breath that shakes the earth. I must go to the other side of the world to see to the wells of Gymir the Elder.”

“You? You cannot wander to the other half of the world. You are eight hundred years old.”

The old druid croaked, his version of a laugh. “I am not quite so helpless as you think. Not all battles are won with steel.”

“If this Gudmund man is causing the quakes with his bad dreams, I shall put him permanently to sleep. I will go down the well and bury my axe in his eye. I will fish him up by the nostrils and punish him before the people, at the Thing.” The berserker rose, holding up one axe, her voice rising. “I am not afraid of any man who can be held captive by a silly tree!”

The old druid rose with a groan and creak of joints, then patted her back. “It is difficult to see clearly through a blood-soaked helmet. No, this battle is not yours, nor mine. This is a terror from which we must run. You will lead our people as far from the wall as you can, and I will pass through the womb of the Great Oak. I will not be alone.”

“Then who will…”

The earth shook again, stronger than before, rolling logs away from the fire. The berserker muttered to herself as she kicked them back into place with one boot heel. When she turned back, the old druid had already shuffled into the longhouse.

In the distance, the howls of wolves sounded through the frozen air.

To be continued…

MORE FORTRESS LORE