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Necromancy lore

Hello Everyone!

I was wondering, is there any lore about what is life force and what is the connection between it and souls? And how much necromancers manipulate souls?

They have a trait line called Soul Reaping, which deals with life force. In it they have traits like Soul Marks, Soul Barbs and Soul Battery which indicates some kind of connection. Moreover the Reaper line has something named Soul Eater and in Death Magic their is Soul Comprehension. These kinda lightly indicates that necromancers abasorb souls to gain life force. But it seems very unlikely that a society, that worships Grenth, who judges the dead and sends them to their rightful place, would accept a profession that deny their god from what they believe is his. We also see in a lot of the NPC necromancers dialog that they respect the dead an they tend to the places that are deeply connected the death.

Spoiler for Path of Fire
The other thing is the Eater of Souls in the story mission The Departing. That thing consumes souls, and if we kill it, we gain a large pool of life force that is enough to restore a dead body to life. But strangely enough after its death a large number of souls get freed from that monster. So it seems the consumed souls either don't get destoyed right away, or they just get trapped in the monster for eternity and it gains the life force without destroying them.

I know that the trait names can be mostly just flavor names and nothing to do with actual lore but I didn't find much material to work with. And that's why I'm asking the question here.

Comments

  • draxynnic.3719draxynnic.3719 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I don't recall off the top of my head if it's been fully explained, but life force (and energy gained through Soul Reaping in GW1) does seem to be something fairly incidental to souls themselves. Something is released when a creature dies that necromancers can harvest for magical power, but doing so does not seem to harm the soul, and, furthermore, soulless beings still seem to release this energy.

    It is mentioned a few times that there is magic in all living (and undead) things - this is part of what makes the Elder Dragons so dangerous, not just for the death and destruction they perform directly, but because if they manage to consume too much of it, there won't be enough magic to sustain an ecosystem afterwards and the world will simply die. It seems, therefore, that what we call "soul reaping" essentially reflects the necromancer being able to manipulate and harvest the magic of living things directly. Life steal, whether from necromancy or some other source, is probably a matter of draining this magic of life from a target and feeding it directly into the recipient, and at least some necromancer heals are probably essentially performing "soul reaping" in reverse.

    There is energy that comes from completely consuming a soul - probably a lot more than is released upon death to be harvested through soul reaping. You could probably compare it to the distinction between the chemical energy released through an exothermic reaction, and total conversion of matter into energy.

    In the case of the Eater of Souls - there's precedent in GW1 for souls to remain trapped in an Eater of Souls for centuries, while still being able to pop out more or less intact, but IIRC there is an indication that there is a limit to this: eventually, a soul will be sufficiently digested that it will no longer retain the potential to be a conscious entity. So what probably happens in the PoF instance you reference is that all of the souls that were recently consumed were released - however, those that have been in the process of digestion for long enough are too far gone, and that gives you a nice big hit of life energy that can be used to revitalise your body.

  • Stephen.6312Stephen.6312 Member ✭✭✭

    @ReganHun.2037 said:
    Hello Everyone!

    I was wondering, is there any lore about what is life force and what is the connection between it and souls? And how much necromancers manipulate souls?

    They have a trait line called Soul Reaping, which deals with life force. In it they have traits like Soul Marks, Soul Barbs and Soul Battery which indicates some kind of connection. Moreover the Reaper line has something named Soul Eater and in Death Magic their is Soul Comprehension. These kinda lightly indicates that necromancers abasorb souls to gain life force. But it seems very unlikely that a society, that worships Grenth, who judges the dead and sends them to their rightful place, would accept a profession that deny their god from what they believe is his. We also see in a lot of the NPC necromancers dialog that they respect the dead an they tend to the places that are deeply connected the death.

    Spoiler for Path of Fire
    The other thing is the Eater of Souls in the story mission The Departing. That thing consumes souls, and if we kill it, we gain a large pool of life force that is enough to restore a dead body to life. But strangely enough after its death a large number of souls get freed from that monster. So it seems the consumed souls either don't get destoyed right away, or they just get trapped in the monster for eternity and it gains the life force without destroying them.

    I know that the trait names can be mostly just flavor names and nothing to do with actual lore but I didn't find much material to work with. And that's why I'm asking the question here.

    These are some important questions. The range of opinions about the nature of lifeforce indicates how little Anet have revealed about the finer details of necromancy.

    If you want to truly understand necromancy, play Path of Fire and immerse yourself in Elonian culture. This is one human population in which necromancy dominates every other magical profession and underpins a functioning society.

    I have some theories about necromancy but I don't have time to commit them to this kind of post, especially with all the troll blood blowing in the wind.

    Hopefully a few more folks can provide insights into answers to the finer points of your post.

    :)

  • Teratus.2859Teratus.2859 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Well it's more a mechanic thing than a lore thing..

    Gw1 had Soul Reaping as well and it mearly restored your energy when you killed enemies, In Gw2 it restores your life force.

    Lore wise Necros can absorb life energy from the living and dead so whatever both life force and energy are as mechanics in either game is just a representation of that kind of Necromancy power.