Edit: Game 5 and the game 6 preview have been added. 9/13
We’re doing this playoff style. One match up at a time. You can vote here in comments, on Patreon, on Facebook, or on our Discord server. I will tally the votes and update the bracket with the winner. Updates will be posted here. Lenny Firegobbler, as usual, will be reporting from the studio after each match.
The contest isn’t about who would win in a straight up fight, but what villain did you think was the best character. Did they make you scared, frustrated, grossed out? Then they were probably a success. Who do you think was a better character? Feel free to vote in comments and give your reasons why.
Once we make our way through the bracket and have a winner we will switch to the Jharro Grove Saga Villain Bracket. The winners of the two will face off in an epic showdown!
Let’s go to a recap of the events this far, featuring clips from Lenny Firegobbler, our studio commentator.
Moonrat Saga SPOILER WARNING. We will be discussing events that occurred throughout the saga if you haven’t finished it yet.
Play-in Game 1: Dann Doudy VS The Raptoid Assassins
Dann Doudy was the noble we learned about in “The War of Stardeon” who arrived at the Academy as the new Dremald Rep just before the siege began. Not only was he an all-around jerk and obvious plant by Ewzad Vriil, he has the man who killed Ewzad’s parents so that Ewzad could become head of House Vriil. By the end of the book he had also slain Tad the Cunning, Demon Jenn, and Swift Kendyl, wiping out a devastating chunk of the Academy Council.
The Raptoid Assassins were six creations of Ewzad Vriil that appeared in Book Five. Three notable ones were Hungry, Clara, And Kassy. Extremely vicious and totally under the thrall of Ewzad, they conducted a night time raid on the beseiged Mage School and killed many important Academy warriors and wizards, notably Sabre Vlad, Forge Master Stanley, and Fire Wizard Munsey.
The match seemed very even to begin with, but in the end it wasn’t even close. Here’s Lenny with the report.
“Thisun was easier to pick than my own dag-blamed nose. That blasted no-good leg-lifter Dann Doudy was a real road apple and Vriil’s magic turned him into a nasty-arse critter, but that’s nothin’ up against those six raptoid-hell-spawn. Hell, Deathclaw gives me the heebies and he’s a friend of mine. Them things were nightmares on clawed feet!”
End vote totals: Dann Doudy: 29% Raptoid assassins: 71%
Play-in Game 2: The Plant Golem VS Hamford
If you remember, the Plant Golem was created because Mellinda helped Mages Arcon and Pympol, and Cadet Piledon implant a literal chaotic mass of nightmares into the body of an immensely powerful automaton made of trees and vegetation. With malicious glee it destroyed many Mage School buildings such as Beehn’s house and the Clocktower, as well as killing several people including the captain of the guard, Alphonze, who Tarah had a crush on.
Hamford was the older brother of Kenn Dollie and wasn’t a villain by choice, but he was Ewzad Vriil’s servant and did his bidding for many years. He was abandoned in the desert with Deathclaw and unwittingly led him to Dremaldria before getting Kenn involve with Ewzad Vriil. He tried to kill Deathclaw with a horde of Ewzad’s monsters and watched with Horror as Kenn was turned into a Bandham-like monster. Overcome by grief, he was caught spying on Ewzad for Wizard Valtrek and was turned into Ewzad Vriil’s giant mount. He finally got his revenge on his master, crushing him just before his own death.
I wasn’t sure how this matchup would go. I didn’t know if people would be more inspired by the fearsomeness of the Plant Golem or the depth of Hamford’s storyline. It was extremely close. In fact, it was a dead on tie. Facebook had Hamford with a slight edge, but Discord gave it to the Plant Golem. In the end I had to scour comments for the tie breaker and found an extra vote in comments on one of the Facebook posts. Here’s Lenny with the match report.
“What a dagum nail-biter! I was squirmin’ in my britches watchin’ this blasted thing play out. Poor Hamford’s a bit of a limp-wristed flower-sniffer, but I’ll be damned if he ain’t always mixed up in the thick of the bad. Felt sorry fer the fool. Looked like he was gonna win over the crowd. But then came a nut-shakin’ roar and that huge tree-eatin’ back-breakin’ clock-hater run in and freaked the crowd out! It was neck and trunk, but the golem squeaked it out in a close one!”
End vote totals: Hamford: 49.8% The Plant Golem: 50.2%
The first match-up of the tournament proper is up next.
Match 1: The Dark Prophet VS Arcon
Also known as David, one of the four original prophets, he was put in charge of the Goblinoid Races. Eventually he went rogue and became known as the Dark Prophet. After many centuries of rebellions and second chances, John the Prophet led a group of heroes to the Dark Prophet’s palace and destroyed his physical body. That was 200 years before the Moonrat Saga. In this saga, the Dark Prophet has taken the form of the Dark Voice, greatly weakened and barely clinging to this world, he can only speak with his servants that have tied themselves to him by evil sacrifices. He spends the saga scheming to get a new body so that he can reclaim his place in the world.
Arcon is a mage who was ensnared by Mellinda after coming across one of her moonrat eyes on the trail. He was seduced by her power and allure and betrayed his friends, feeding her information from within the Mage School and handing out Moonrat Eyes to select students and faculty that were ripe for her control. He did most of the work to create the Plant Golem and killed his friend Piledon to keep him from talking. When discovered, he fled to meet Mellinda in person, where a special moonrat eye was placed in his chest and he learned the true horror of the creature he had been working for. He ended up killing the king’s councilors at her behest and stayed at Ewzad Vriil’s side until the end, when he cut the Rings of Stardeon from the wizard’s hands and fled the country.
Who will win. Who is the character whose story impacted you the most during this saga? It’s your time to vote! This match will end on 8/30!
Game 3 is in the books! It was WAY closer than I imagined. Facebook had The Dark Prophet with a win. Discord favored Arcon. It was a tie broken by a single vote from Patreon. The Dark Prophet wins the Match and moves on. Here’s Lenny in the studio with a report.
“Hell, folks, this shouldn’t have been a big dag-blamed deal. The Dark Prophet’s the dag-gum biggest of the bad. Sure Arcon was once an ankle-chasin’ kid with a sob story, but he was a garl-friggin’ idjit! He got moon-eyed about a nasty-arsed witch made of bugs and leaves! So when it come down to it, the Dark Prophet won. He might not’ve had a body to kill folks with, but he was pullin’ all the strings of the ones who did!”
End vote totals: Arcon 49% The Dark Prophet %51
Next match up is Talon Vs Kenn Dollie!
Kenn was a bully with delusions of grandeur who nearly cost Justan entrance into the Academy. He ended up getting kicked out of Training School for kidnapping and assaulting Jhonate. Then he betrayed his own parents to take possesion of the house and became one of Ewzad Vriils servants. Eventually Ewzad fuzed his body with a still-born bandham and he became a huge fiery monster. He fought Talon to a standstill, half-melted Charz, and killed Qyxal before the Scralag took him down.
Talon was a raptoid and Deathclaw’s sister. She was changed into humanoid form and stolen by Ewzad Vriil who twisted her into a lethal abomination whose only thoughts were of death and pain. She killed countless people by his command before being freed by Deathclaw. But even then she couldn’t shake her ways. Under Mellinda’s control, she was responsible for the death of Master Coal. The saga ended with the Prophet freeing her of Mellinda’s compulsions and sending her on a path to possible redemption.
Who was the better villain? Remember, this isn’t about who would win in a physical fight. It’s about who was the better character? Who made you cringe. Who made you fear for the good guys? Voting ends September 4!
Match 4 of the Moonrat Saga Villain Tournament is in the books!
It wasn’t even close. Here’s Lenny Firegobbler reporting from the studio.
“All these matches’ve been too dag-gum close. An overmatched fight like this’un was long overdue. Kenn Dollie was a snivelin’ weasel-whipper. A no-good nostril lolly licker. A real skid-mark on the long johns of his family tree. But Talon was a mean, ornery, crazy-arsed, killin’ machine that took a few dag-blamed bashes to the head to knock some sense into her. Even now, I can’t bear to be ‘round her. Feels like she could snap any durn moment. Anyway, Talon wins.”
Talon %76 Kenn %24
Next up is Match 5 and Ewzad Vriil slithers into the mix and goes up against play-in winner, the plant golem.
Ewzad Vriil comes from a long line of bad nobles. He managed to keep his magic secret from the Mage School and became self-taught, using his magic to take advantage in the courts of Dremald. Ove rtime he had his parents killed, framed his sister and her husband for it, and even killed the king. He did all that before sacrificing a childhood friend to gain the Rings of Stardeon. Ewzad Vriil was responsible for more death and destruction than any dark wizard in 200 years.
The Plant Golem was made of pure earth magic and plant material and anchored together with elven herbs. With Mellinda’s help, Arcon, Piledon, and Pympol reached into the world of dreams and pulled out a chaotic amalgamation of nightmares to inhabit it. The resulting monstrosity wreaked havoc on the Mage School, killing and wounding students and faculty and tearing down the centuries old clock tower.
The golem beat Hamford in the opening match of the tournament. Does it have a chance against the worm-fingered Ewzad Vriil?
What a busy week, what with Tallow 2 nearly out. But I wanted to update you on the tournament. Game 5 is done. It was a good one. Here’s Lenny with the report.
“Dag-gum! This was one of those fights we all knew was gonna end a certain way. Yeah, the golem was a blasted scary piece of work, but that nasty-arsed, noodle-fingered, nose-lifter, Ewzad Vriil was the worst! He killed hunnerds of poor beasts to make his monsters and killed on a dagblamed whim. Anyway, Ewzad won by a friggin’ lot!”
Ewzad Vriil 87% Plant Golem 23%
Next up is match 6
Mellinda VS The Raptoid Assassins
The six raptoid assassins, created by Ewzad Vriil at the end of War of Stardeon were supposed improvements over Deathclaw and Talon. Each one of them had unique attributes and they were all deadly. They won out over Hamford in the play in rounds and now they are up against a big one.
Mellinda. The Moonrat Mother. The Dark Goddess. The Troll Queen. She has had many names over the years. Once named at the Bowl of Souls, she was a Bonding WIzardess married to Stardeon. But she cut her ties to her husband and the Creator itself. Mellinda became all about gaining power, surpassing even The Dark Prophet at one point
Who is the best villain. Who made you scream? Who made you squeam? Vote now. The winner faces Talon in the semi finals!