UPDATE, 2-2-2015: In light of the somehow steady streaming of traffic on this page and Part 1 of the Chivalry Lorequest, I am A: Confused, considering how rough and crude these two entries are, and B: Am interested in eventually updating these two entries so they are more up-to-snuff with the writing ability and picture quality of the latter two entries in this Lorequest series.
ALSO: Why are there so many hits coming from an Argentinian Chivalry forum? Of all places in the world. Makes a man wonder!
Here we are again with another entry of Chivalry: Medieval Warfare’s LOREQUEST. For this second entry, I’m going to be focusing on the antagonistic force of Chivalry- The Mason Order, their history, culture, and leader: the distant cousin of Alfonso Argon, Malric Terrowin.
Now, onto the show- I do love the villains ever so much.
Just like the Kingdom of Agatha, here’s some general points to set the tone for the Mason Order, which includes, philosophies battle-cries, and their heraldry.
- General Philosophy
“Glory is death by the sword.”
“The weak shall serve the strong.”
“A mans worth is judged by his competence.”
“You keep what you kill.”
“Change is necessary for improvement.”
“Mercy on the battlefield is a trait of the weak.”
“Of anybody who stands against the masons will be hanged, drawn and quartered, or inducted to slavery.”
“For the iron fist!”
“Long live the Order!”
“Agatha is no more!”
“Live under the iron fist, or die!”
“Long live Malric!”
“I tire of mead, I thirst for blood!”
“For the red and black!”
The Order’s animal sigil is a black eagle, as opposed to the Agathian gold lion. Equally as important as a symbol is the pair of iron fists. If their battle-cries and creeds were not evidence enough, the Mason Order values combat and an oppressive rule of power. Needless to say, this guys are the villains without a shadow of a doubt.
After looking into the opening cutscene to the game as well as the lore supplied by the official website, I think I have arrived at a general composition of the history of the Mason Order. Because this is a relatively new faction, barely 3 years old at the beginning of the multiplayer game, there is much more strife and turmoil regarding its creation and much more about its history in general.
-Here we see Malric Terrowin, a distant cousin of Alfonso Argon. He was once General Terrowin and a respected member of the armies of the Kingdom of Agatha. As the opening cutscene and the official lore describes, Tenosia, the distant land whose capitol (Jaburdan) is the site of the “Crusade” map, was the site of a new imperial campaign for Alfonso. Having just recently reunited the whole of his native continent, Alfonso took his Agathian Knights to the southeast to lay claim to the faraway nation.
-Jaburdan, the capitol of Tenosia, now in ruins after Alfonso’s failed crusade.
As it happens, Alfonso Argon died in battle against the forces of Tenosia and his army was left shattered. After the defeat of the bulk of Alfonso’s forces and after the death of their king, the Agathian knights were left in disarray. Two leaders arose out of the chaos: General Malric Terrowin and General Feydrid Kearn. As mentioned in the previous entry on Agatha, Feydrid took up the position of acting-king but was declared a traitor by Malric Terrowin.
Feydrid had declared that Danum Argon was to be new true leader of the Kingdom of Agatha and that Danum could have Feydrid’s support if he so desired. However, you know that my opinion of Feydrid is less-than-cordial, so I doubt that he was legitimately trying to restore Feydrid to the throne. Regardless, after his death in the map “Coldfront,” the Masons tightened their grip on the east of the Agathian continent.
Given the chaos and disarray that strikes the camps of Agatha’s armies, this is where the Order truly began. The beginning cutscene makes note that the Mason Order was “an elite group,” which makes sense if that the birth of the Mason Order was in an Agathian war camp. Looking up at the earlier entries about the Mason’s creeds, it doesn’t seem like a leap to say that while the Mason Order seems to think that “might makes right,” it does have a certain level of appeal to the lower class of people and outcasts.
- Theory Entry: Below is an extended idea I had about the nature of the Mason Order and its initial uprising. A map which I do not know the name of, which I’m just going to call “Siege Camp,” is where one can see a very interesting side of the Mason Order. Consider that the Mason Order is built off of the remnants of Agathian knights and men-at-arms and consider the fact that the Agathians just lost a terrible amount of men during their failed crusade- it would seem unlikely that Malric could summon his entire Order at full strength so quickly as to overwhelm the Agathian mainland while the main force was still in Tenosia (the map “Battlegrounds” makes that explicitly clear).
-This is a Mason Chieftain. The entire aesthetic of the map, “Siege Camp,” with the Chieftains in particular, is very tribal, including multiple severed animal head motifs and a general lack of civilization.
-See? I’m not totally leaping to conclusions about aesthetics again! The feeling in the map is much less refined, which is more obvious than the other, more subtle aesthetic difference. Well, that was a kind of “the sun is hot,” statement wasn’t it? Behind where I stand in this picture, there is a sign which says “Siege Weapon Training” on it next to a catapult. Now, what would an “elite group” like the Mason Order need training for in such a remote location? The answer is that the Mason Order is not entirely made up of previous Agathian loyalists. I theorize that the hills and mountains of Agatha are home to many more barbaric tribes of men who were conquered by Alfonso. They swore their loyalty to Malric in light of the Order’s violent philosophy and a mutual dislike of the Kingdom of Agatha.
With that in mind, I believe that is how Malric managed to raise up his armies quickly enough so that he could overwhelm the Agathian defences in relatively quick order. It also helps that the Mason Order seems to be the more aggressive faction, so they were able to get an early lead over the Agathians.
-Here we see Malric Terrowin in the new colours and heraldry of the Mason Order with his men behind him. The pointed dome helmets and bearded axes of his men have become a mite iconic, give how much they contrast the simple, sharp shapes of mainstream medieval design that the Agathians boast.
Given how important Malric seems to be to the Mason Order, essentially being the figurehead, leader, primary strategist, and founder of philosophy, it is no wonder that he has developed a bit of an ego. In the capitol of the order, the volcanic Citadel, there is a massive statue overlooking the entire complex, including its many captured Agathian slaves.
While this the Citadel is certainly a large step up from the rugged tribal settlement seen before, it doesn’t really help to prove Malric’s “noble” intentions at all. Although he vowed to take the people of Agatha and harden them with his new order, everything he does seems to belay more of a power-hungry message. After all, the irony of owning slaves and slaughtering Stonehills’ peasants directly contrasts the roots of the Mason Order, which first arose from the beleaguered and weary people of Alfonso’s armies. If Malric is willing and able to simply force others into subjugation rather than try to convert them into his cause, it shows that he truly has no desire to rule fairly or even to rule over a truly strong nation. After all, a strong nation cannot simply be a single order, so the Masons could and probably would eventually lose their seats of power. Another interesting nugget is that Malric uses the rumour of a counterattack from Tenosia as leverage to get people to join his cause. Suffice to say, it’s probably not a coincidence that Malric’s last name is only one word off from “terror.” Also, as a fun side-note, Terrowin’s words are “Power resides in those who seize it,” and their house colours are red/black with their symbol being an eagle. While it is certainly not odd to hear of a medieval kingdom with the monarch’s sigil as their primary symbol, Malric appears to be EVERYTHING to the Order.
-This isn’t really the greatest picture of the Malric, but he is the “King” in the Citadel map. Comparing him to Danum/Feydrid, he certainly seems to be a bit more of a warrior king than them. I’m not surprised at all that Malric was once a powerful Agathian general and also had a personal martial strength to be a figure strong enough to challenge the legacy of the previous conquering warrior king Alfonso Argon.
- Theory Entry: While the Kingdom of Agatha might be on the defensive in the beginning of the war, their economy is still relatively strong- strong enough to create great war machines and supply, arm, and feed huge armies of well-equipped men. The Mason Order, however, seems to have less of a handle on their territory. It might be because they probably already slaughtered most of the FILTHY PEASANTS (I love how they’re actually called that in-game) that they came across or because their amount of territory is simply less than the Agathians, but it appears as though they make up for this labour and economic deficit with slaves.
-Agathian prisoners of war are forced to work in the Citadel’s many forges.
-Additionally, mined ore set to be refined is pushed (and probably mined, as well) by the slaves. However, considering that capturing or protecting slaves is not present in any other map in the game, it is possible that the Citadel is the only location where it is practiced openly and the whole “capturing slaves is a-okay with us,” part of the Mason Order’s creed is conveniently left out so not to scare away new recruits.
- Theory Entry: Speaking of the economy, looking at the choice in weapons and armour, including both shape and quality, that the Order arms itself with, I return to my idea of the Order appealing more to the lower classes eager to take back power from the Kingdom of Agatha, which had conquered them and then dragged them off to fight in Alfonso’s disastrously-failed crusade. However, the Vanguards appear to look closer to their Agathian counterparts, so the original idea of the Order being an “elite group” still has some merit.
-The difference in the amount of plate is key- the Agathian knights always have more of it and are also much more likely to actually uphold the knightly code of chivalry, as I touched on in the last Lorequest. The more barbaric attitude and weapon choice (the axe is very commonly seen in pictures of the Mason knight) all funnel back to what I was mentioning before about the Order coming more from driven men with bad tempers, rather than solely elite soldiers-turned-traitor. If I was going to make a guess as to the downfall of the Mason Order, it would stem from a lack of a collective culture and industry. While the Mason warriors might be powerful, their unity is only viable because of Malric’s leadership. If Malric were to die, the whole thing would likely go to hell.
- Theory Edit and Addition (8-15-2014): Since Chivalry updated recently and gave us more maps to play on offline custom matches, I was able to play Coldfront much more often. From this I actually found a very interesting point that pretty much proves my earlier theories about the Order’s numbers getting swelled with repressed and savage folk.
-As mentioned in above picture’s caption, the Barbarian Mercenary’s helmet very much resembles the default Mason Order knight helmet (see two pictures up for a quick reference). This could either mean that the Mason Order is supplying barbarian folk with their own arms and armour or the barbarian tribes were responsible for bringing their own cultural flair into the Order and that culture eventually was adopted into the norm. Because I place Coldfront’s events as one of the first in the Mason-Agatha War, I could see either being possible. And, to be honest, I think the end result is the same- cultures from less-civilized parts of the Agathian continent joined with the Mason Order because of their valuing of strength and their animosity towards the conquering Kingdom of Agatha.
-Below are some additional pictures of Barbarian Mercenaries in Coldfront showing other similar equipment to the greater Mason Order.
Finally, I’d like to present this map of Agatha:
-While I do doubt some of the authenticity of this map, as I will explain in my war history post, I think this map gives away some of the general state of being for the Mason Order. The land that they firmly control is there in the red and their land total is much smaller than the Kingdom of Agatha’s. However, I believe that the Citadel and the Siege Camp all exist in the lands west of those directly under Mason control. IT is through sleep agents, skirmishers, and traitors that the Order keeps its prospects of victory alive. Have I mentioned that these guys are probably the bad guys? If I didn’t, it’s probably because I didn’t even have to.
Well, that’s about all I could cook up about Malric’s dear Mason Order- it appears to be one of those organizations that runs entirely on principle and less on practicality, meaning when it does eventually fall apart, it will be a violent (and really cool to watch) falling out. Still, Malric is an interesting enough man and there are a few more aspects of the Order, including Malric’s captain of the guard that I’d like to talk about further, but for this first post, I think this will suffice. I’ll save you the dreadful experience of looking at Steve Brule’s face mixed with a sarcastic comment and just come right out and say that I’ll have some kind of “change log” down below the great dividing line so you can all see how wrong I was!
So, enough of that for now! I do hope you’ve enjoyed this new entry into the “Lorequest” series. These things take forever to make and the next one promises to be even longer than this one or the Agathian entry, so… I’ll try my best, but I’m not holding my breath! And nor should you- I simply don’t have the time in my day right now to get sued!
So, until later~
-END TRANSMISSION. GOOD MORNING, GOOD AFTERNOON, GOOD NIGHT-