Shurima Desert is an arid territory in the southern half of Valoran.
Ravaged by Rune Wars long past, the Shurima was wrecked by chaotic magical storms leaving a harsh desolate desert. The region is known for its hot climate where many have been known to go mad beneath the glare of the Shurima sun. Besides humans, armadillos are one of the few known creatures that are capable of surviving on its difficult terrain.
Shurima was once a great and mighty civilization. The denizens of the kingdom skillfully crafted enormous sandstone walls and statues that rose from the floor to the ceiling. The regal figures clasped scepters to their chests, and their eyes, plated in gold, would gaze eternally down upon those below them. The kingdom's most renowned structure was the Temple of the Falcon, where all the mages of Shurima practiced their craft. Young magicians would spar beneath their Magic ancestors. They threw fire and ice and twisted magic into the shapes of blades, honing the arcane into weaponry. Such was the charge of mages: the greatest masters of magic would stand victorious over Shurima’s conquered foes. For their lessons the mages were taught that magic was chaotic. They were taught that without a mage's guiding hand, the arcane would bring destruction to everything around them.
As eons passed, the great kingdom of Shurima rose and fell. Ruins were all that remain. It is within these crumbling structures that the enigmatic creature Nasus, the Curator of the Sands, feels most at home. Not much is known about the present day denizens of the Shurima Desert. For centuries the inhabitants have given birth to many Seers who were blessed with the gift of foresight. Currently, the Seer that is said to have the most power and potential is Malzahar, the Prophet of the Void.
The Floating Pyramids Edit
Large pyramids can be found floating in the sky above the Shurima Desert. The origins of these structures is steeped in mystery and entering them is said to be extremely dangerous. However, there are those who believe that the pyramids house untold treasures. Whether for profit, knowledge, or simply for the thrill, many adventurers make the attempt to discover the pyramids' secrets.
While exploring one of these pyramids the adventurer Ezreal, the Prodigal Explorer, uncovered an ancient artifact - an amulet of inestimable power. He barely managed to extract it from its sandy abode due to its sheer magnitude (it was made for a being easily twice Ezreal's size). After fervent investigation, he found that the amulet allowed the wielder to control and shape magical energy - provided there was a source of magic nearby. This has permitted Ezreal to tap into his latent magical abilities with minimal effort. For some unknown reason the amulet was highly attuned to summoning magic.
The yordle known as Amumu, the Sad Mummy, awoke alone inside another of these pyramids. How he came to be there remains unknown... especially to Amumu himself. He was entwined in mummy wrappings and he could not feel his heart beat. Though most assuredly undead, he harbored none of the evil characteristics typical of undead beings. Furthermore, he felt a deep sadness that he could not entirely explain; he knew he missed his parents, though he could not remember who they were. Dropping to his knees, Amumu wept into his bandages. No matter what he did, it seemed he could never stop his tears or sadness. Eventually he stood up, determined to wander the world to discover his past.
The Xerath Calamity Edit
In the ancient civilization of Shurima, an ambitious mage practiced magic with undying passion. He believed that with enough magical power, he could gaze into the heart of Runeterra to know the secrets of history and the universe beyond. Such magic was beyond the limitations of a mortal body, but he obsessively pursued a path to infinite power nonetheless. With every breakthrough he grew more and more powerful, yet not without consequence. His increasing arcane abilities wrought havoc on his physical form. Desperate, he undertook a dangerous ritual to transcend his dying body. The outcome would be immortality or self-destruction. Violent magic unleashed during the ritual caused devastation throughout Shurima, but when the dust settled, Xerath, the Magus Ascendant, emerged as a being of pure arcane energy.
Free of flesh and bone, Xerath held nearly infinite power at his command. However, in the wake of his chaotic ritual, the mages of Shurima feared his careless disregard for life would bring ruin to the kingdom. After a terrible struggle they subdued Xerath, but they could not destroy his ascended form. Instead they trapped him within an enchanted sarcophagus and sealed him in an underground tomb. As eons passed, the Shurima civilization rose and fell, and Xerath's imprisonment was lost to memory.
The Amulet Discovered EditPiltover's Grandmaster Explorer, Ezreal, discovered a powerful relic. An amulet of immeasurable power, it was clear that it was made for a being that was easily twice his own size. It had the incredible ability to grant it's wielder the ability to control magic, provided that there be a source of power nearby.
The Return of Xerath EditFor centuries, Xerath's vast power tore away at the sarcophagus and weakened its spell. Finally, he willed forth a burst of magic that shattered his prison, but its core remained, containing Xerath and his power within its broken pieces. Seeking to rid himself of this burden, he was drawn to the magic of Valoran's nexuses and found he could absorb their power. Yet the nexuses had gatekeepers: mages known as summoners. Xerath knew his key to true freedom from his prison lay in gaining their trust, and he offered his power to the League of Legends.
An Ancient Mystery In Runeterra Edit
Hey, everyone. Ezreal here.
Normally, I wouldn't ask for help. I've come across a lot of interesting relics in my travels, but never anything like these.
I've gathered everything on my desk for all of you to take a look. The important thing is that these relics were found all over Runeterra, and they date from different and completely unconnected eras. The thing is... they all share one similarity: they show a dark figure, clearly inhuman, wielding a jagged blade.
This is a mystery I'm not sure I want solved. From what I can gather so far, this dark figure has been at the center of many bloody conflicts and tales of war. What do you think? Who is this figure, and what role has he played in Runeterra's history?
Oh, and if you really want to hear some of the stories about these things... I'll tell them, but some of them aren't pretty.
Take a look at this. It's a stained glass window from Demacia.
Don't ask me how I got it. I'm going to give it back, I promise. I'm borrowing it for research, and they'll never know it's missing. Demacians never stop talking about light, so what do they really need a window for, anyway?
Look closely. See the shape in the center with the wings and the jagged sword? That's the figure I've been seeing everywhere.
This is the first artifact that really got me thinking. It's not that old, and it can't really go back more than a few generations at most. I asked around, and nobody knows what the figure is or if he has a name. They all agreed on one thing though: whoever this figure is, he's clearly someone worth remembering to be immortalized like this.
But why does he appear in so many other places? So many of these artifacts are ancient, and some are from lost civilizations so old they don't even have names.
How is that possible?
This statuette is from Noxus.
Yes, Noxus. You know how I feel about Noxians, but their city is full of history. It'll take more than dark magic, guards with massive axes, and a creepy bird guy to keep me from exploring the most important places in Valoran.
Noxus is full of these kinds of statuettes. Usually, they're made as tributes to the nation's greatest heroes, but this one doesn't look like any Noxian war hero I've ever heard of. I know of plenty, too, believe me: pick up any Noxian book and it's probably a way-too-lengthy chronicle of some hero's life, conquests, and the size of their weapon. I wouldn't have looked twice at this one if I hadn't recognized the figure.
Here's the thing that's really nagging me... what's Noxus doing with statues of a figure that shows up in Demacian art, too?
When I noticed the similarities between the Demacian stained glass and the Noxian statue, I had to know more. I pulled as many books as I could out of the library at Piltover's academy. There are some sections there restricted to everyone but academy graduates. I could have gotten in on my own, but I didn't want to burn any bridges, so I had Jayce help me out. Everyone loves that guy.
The smaller one is a book of Noxian war poems. Most of what's inside is standard Noxian military fare, but the blade on the cover captured my attention.The big one right here is an old book of fables and stories. Not all of them are entirely true, but one of them caught my eye. The character in the story is an arrogant general leading his warriors into battle and winning with ease. He has the last of his enemies cornered, but… you know what they say about pride before a fall.
A great warrior—that's right, our dark figure—appears in the battle. The arrogant general's enemies, men on the verge of death, are inspired by his presence. "They rose from their knees as though he'd lit their very blood aflame," it says. "The shamed general watched as his men were cleaved by an army that had begged for mercy just moments before. His enemies had become murderers and butchers. As they closed on him, the general could not be certain whether they were still men at all."
Shurima's been gone for centuries. It's hardly anything but dust now, but the ruins that remain show a massive civilization that once thrived in the desert. I have no idea what happened to the empire. It seems like it vanished without a trace... but that's a whole different mystery.
I found this urn in a tomb there. From the look of the place and some of the carvings on the walls, it was the final resting place of a great Shuriman warlord who led a battle against impossible odds. He and his men should have gone out in a blaze of glory, but somehow, they won. Just a handful of warriors defeated thousands of enemies who rose against them.
It's no wonder they'd immortalize that kind of victory on the walls of a tomb, but what is this dark figure doing on the urn? What part did he play in this battle? I just don't get it.
You can carve plenty of interesting things out of the Freljord's ice. That place has always been a battleground, so I wouldn't have thought twice about digging up a dagger like this one if it weren't for two things. One: check out the etching in the metal. Look closely enough and you'll see the same serrated design found in the rest of these relics. Two, well… the dagger's hilt is carved from human bone.
Here's where it gets more interesting. The tribesmen of that region say the figure on the blade is a legend, a "warrior-savior" who appeared during a battle against a hated rival tribe several years ago. They'd almost lost the battle, but the warrior appeared and led them to a crushing victory over their enemies. They left no one alive, but when the tribesmen went to celebrate with their champion, he'd already vanished. They say that - in his memory - they took the bones of their enemies as trophies.
It sounds like a similar story to the one from the Shuriman tomb. Both tell of a warrior who appeared and turned the tide of a great battle... but at a gruesome cost.
This Ionian woodblock was carved long before the war with Noxus. They're rare nowadays, but they're always more or less the same. They all depict things of beauty: landscapes, monks in meditation, the stars and the night sky, all of that "enlightenment" stuff they're always on about. All of them... except this one.
I got lucky with this one. I found it stuck between the pages of that huge book. It's not the same paper, and it's pretty damaged. Maybe someone got to this research before me, but they didn't get as far as I did.
In the image, it looks like these men are revering a statue of the dark figure. The statue itself looks like it's half-unearthed. It might not even be something they built, but something they found.
What is it about this figure that drove these people to be so devoted to him?
I won these coins off a certain Card Master whose name I won't say... and whose real name I don't even know. I'd lost every single hand up until this one, and the one time I beat him, of course he'd bet completely useless old coins. I can't spend them anywhere in Valoran. At least I've found a "use" for them now. It took me a while to realize it, but that's the same jagged blade on these old coins.
Finally, there's this pendant to the right. It's very, very old, and I have no idea where it originally came from. That's the dark figure's face right there in the metal. Whoever he is, he's been around for a really long time.
That's all I've collected so far. So… what do you think? Who is this figure, and what does his presence mean?I know one thing: I never want to meet him...
- Lissandra mentioned in the lore of the Howling Abyss that Shurima was not a desert during the Era of the Three Sisters.
|Amumu, the Sad Mummy||Point of origin|
|Ezreal, the Prodigal Explorer||Origin of powers|
|Kassadin, the Void Walker||Probable Birthplace|
|Malzahar, the Prophet of the Void||Birthplace; former seer of Shurima|
|Nasus, the Curator of the Sands||Residence|
|Rammus, the Armordillo||Birthplace|
|Xerath, the Magus Ascendant||Birthplace; imprisoned in a sarcophagus for eons|
|Places in Runeterra|
|Fields of Justice|
|Continents and Dimensions|