|“||Dreary and wearisome. Cold, clammy winter still held sway in this forsaken country. The only green was the scum of livid weed on the dark greasy surfaces of the sullen waters. Dead grasses and rotting reeds loomed up in the mists like ragged shadows of long forgotten summers.||”|
–The Two Towers, Passage of The Marshes
The Dead Marshes is a gloomy and desolate region of Middle-earth with bleak skies and dark waters. Hill or mountain biomes that touch the Dead Marshes have sharp drops where they meet, due to the low height of the marshes. Twisted trees grow out of the ground, and sugar cane can be found here commonly, as well as the remains of many dead soldiers. Twisted plants thrive in this festering swamp, but few other living things do. Anyone brave enough to dig through the remains may find treasures and equipment beyond their wildest dreams, yet a fate as bleak as the land itself awaits any living creature which steps into the water...
Upon entering the Dead Marshes you gain the achievement "The Stench Of Evil".
For those willing to traverse the marshes, a special surprise lies in the middle of the bog.
Unlike most swamps, which have a swamp uplands and swamp lowlands variant, there is only one version of the Dead Marshes, which is flat, murky, and deadly.
Dead Marshes River
The Dead Marshes have their own river biome, the water of which is dark, filthy, and filled with Marsh Wraiths.
There are no structures in the Dead Marshes, as nothing lives, ever has, or ever will live in this vile swamp. No structures can be found here... Or can they? After all, who would want to build a house in a bog full of corpses?
No animals can survive in this wretched biome, but those who fall into the water will meet a fearsome mob indeed. No Orcs spawn here either, although Mordor Orcs can launch an invasion on rare occasions.
- Marsh Wraith- Marsh wraiths are spectral corpses that float in the waters of the Dead Marshes. When a player or mob steps into the water, a corpse will float above the water and attack. They cannot be touched and disappear after a minute.
Underground, all the normal ores generate, but above ground in the dirt, veins of remains can spawn. Many remains can most easily be retrieved by entering a pool to dig them up, but it is up to the player to decide whether that is worth the risk. But for those who do retrieve remains, they can receive (slightly used) treasures varying from pieces of Lindon, Gondor, Arnorian, or Mordor armour or equipment, bones, silver, and gold.
The Dead Marshes are, for the most part, dead. The few trees here are bare oak trunks, and the grass is a scrubby brown. Black and twisted marsh plants grow here as well. Around the pools of filthy water there is quagmire, a substance similar to quicksand. As with all wetlands, reeds grow in the water as well.
In the Lore Edit
In the year S.A. 3434 the host of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men fought the forces of Mordor in the Battle of Dagorlad. During the battle on the plains more than half of the Elves of Lothlórien under the command of King Amdír were driven into the Dead Marshes. After the battle many of the slain were buried outside of the marshy area but over time (in the Third Age) the Marshes had grown and swallowed the graves.
In T.A. 1944 King Ondoher of Gondor was caught by a surprise attack by the Wainriders upon the Dagorlad. When the King and his guard were destroyed many of the confused soldiers of Gondor were driven by the attackers into the Dead Marshes. However, after Eärnil II won the Battle of the Camp, those of the Wainriders who were not slain in the fight were themselves driven into the Dead Marshes and there perished.
The dead marshes are an eerie environment. From their dead waters arise small flames and strange luminous balls that bewitch whoever approaches.
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