The View from Valehaven is pleased to announce the start of a new feature series, A Call to Arms, the aim of which is to showcase the different heraldries in the Realms. Every group and many organizations, guilds, and individuals have distinctive and different heraldries, and sometimes the outsider can't help but wonder what those heraldries mean to the people who bear them - what does the heraldry represent? How did it come to be? What is the story behind it? And so started the idea for this series. It is our hope at the View that we can all learn a bit more about each other, our game, and our history along the way.
[Editor's note: if you are interested in submitting an individual, nation, guild, or group heraldry for the series, please email Jen (email@example.com) or any other View staff member]
The Southern Wastes
by Mike "Sir Panther" Palumbo
1. What does this heraldry currently represent?
Our heraldry represents the WasteRunners of the Southern Wastes, also referred to as The Wastes.
2. Please describe your heraldry for us.
A lot of people have trouble seeing it, but once it's explained it clicks. It's a blood red moon with the silhouette of a goblin head. Most people can make out the extended lower jaw and the eye socket, but it's the fact that he has a helm with the visor open that throws off most people. Once you realize it's an open visor, you can see the vents, and the hinge point.
3. Give us some background. How did your heraldry come to be? Who or what created it?
Our heraldry was created during the birth of the Realms. Nana Prom, one of the founders of the game, created it and dreamed up the origins and environment of The Southern Wastes. We, the remaining members, hold it in high regard because tragically Nana died young (the real player, not a character). As a result, we will never change it, and even went to great lengths to preserve it digitally to allow us to continue using his art, rather than our own version of his art.
4. Why was this heraldry chosen to represent you? What is the symbolism behind it? What was the inspiration behind the design?
The logo is a specific reference to the goblin infestation in the Southern Wastes. Humans and elves live in The Wastes and the goblins are largely in charge. The short history can be read here: http://southernwastes.com/writing/burn.htm As Wasterunners, we deal with them every day in some way.
5. How long has the heraldry been in the game? Has it changed at any time since it was first created?
The heraldry has been in the game since the game started. I have a shield from that era with the original art on it. There exists one or two others. Once when I was young, I changed the blood red to a moonlight white, thinking to update it. I was informed that our former member Lou threatened to break my arm, but after some time to calm down, they concluded that it would be allowed. A few years later I changed it back realizing my mistake. I appreciate that those before me were willing to allow me to grow and influence the development of the Southern Wastes, instead of just insisting on conformity, and when I realized that this extended to the logo despite their unease, I eventually concluded that I was wrong and I changed it back, as a sign of respect. And we will never change it again, we could change anything else about the group, but that has to remain the same. I'm told that Rob will damage me if the shield is ever damaged beyond repair.
6. What do you hope seeing this heraldry means to the rest of the Realms?
I never really thought about it before, it was always meant for us internally, a small sign of unity among a group of diverse individuals. Like I said, most people aren't sure what it is, it's a puzzle to them, and I guess that's appropriate because we are something of a puzzle to most people. We don't completely fit with most other groups or their ideals. We have our own way, and we're all a bit off. If anything it means bonded. We may disagree with each other, we may fight each other, at times we may even hate each other, but the bond never breaks.