|Gives Quest(s):||The Ironclad Chef|
A Timely Arrival
Allies Among the Ashes
The Bane of Cairn
History[edit | edit source]
First Blade[edit | edit source]
When Ulgrim became the First Blade, his former identity has been stricken from all records so that he could operate outside the boundaries of the law. His new job as the Emperor's assassin and spymaster involved eliminating all kinds of threats to the Empire, from Arcanists to Occultists to Rovers to Nightblades of Erulan's noble houses.
While the First Blade's existence has not been secret, as it has been known to many Erulan citizens, bringing to light that the Emperor resorts to such methods could result in a "personal meeting" with the First Blade.
Grim Dawn[edit | edit source]
Despite all the mundane protections and magical wards shielding the Emperor of Erulan, he became a vessel for an Aetherial. In a moment of lucidity, the Emperor ordered his First Blade to kill him and take his son to safety, as well as seek out Inquisitor Creed. After this, the Aetherial took over, and a battle ensued, from which Ulgrim emerged victorious. Apparently, Ulgrim did get the prince to safety, but has not shared any information regarding his whereabouts.
It was after this event that Ulgrim actually adopted this name instead of just the title of the First Blade.
Some time later, Ulgrim sought out Inquisitor Creed. Together they decided to make contact with the Black Legion and form a resistance to the Aetherials.
Totally just a cook[edit | edit source]
The Taken meets Ulgrim in the Burrwitch Outskirts, where he has been hiding out alone since the village fell to the Aetherials. Ulgrim pretends to be a simple cook, and the player character has the option to transport him to Devil's Crossing via riftgate, which grants the Ironclad Chef side quest. After this he will set up inside the prison as a cook, and will serve soup and tell stories, which appear to euphemistically describe his exploits as the First Blade.
On the way to Homestead[edit | edit source]
When the Taken discovers Elsa in the Barren Highlands, Ulgrim leaves Devil's Crossing for Homestead. The Taken finds Ulgrim at Deadman's Gulch, where the "cook" is no longer unarmed and is now protecting some stranded refugees he has found. Ulgrim reveals to the player character his former job as the First Blade, saying this is fitting compensation for digging around and finding out about the Taken's former possession by an Aetherial, something they have not mentioned to Ulgrim directly.
As the only way to Homestead is too dangerous for the refugees to survive, Ulgrim asks the Taken to use their unique ability to re-purpose riftgates by passing through the Mountain Deeps, reaching Homestead, reactivating the riftgate there, and returning to Ulgrim and the refugees to have them transported to the settlement.
After this is done, Ulgrim moves alongside Creed, where they continue developing the resistance's strategy. In particular, after the Taken defeats The Amalgamation, Ulgrim advises seeking the support of one of the cults, either Kymon's Chosen or the Order of Death's Vigil.
Loghorrean's summoning and Ulgrim's disappearance[edit | edit source]
Ulgrim joins the Taken at Fort Ikon, where the protagonist reveals to him that the worshippers of Ch'thon are planning to summon the Loghorrean at the Necropolis. When the player character activates the Necropolis Interior riftgate, Ulgrim transports there and evaluates the situation.
The Chthonian cultists are using vast amounts of blood to maintain a seal which, while not a problem for Ulgrim to breach, prevents the Taken from following. The former First Blade asks the protagonist to destroy the blood wagons so that the flow of blood is interrupted, then to follow Ulgrim into the depths of the necropolis and ensure the Loghorrean is not summoned.
The Taken and Ulgrim turn out to be somewhat late, as Loghorrean is very much alive and has to be beaten in combat. In the middle of the battle, however, void rifts open around the chamber and consume Ulgrim. The player character is forced to finish the job alone.
The search for Ulgrim[edit | edit source]
Suspecting Ulgrim of being more than a mere mortal, Inquisitor Creed refuses to let him go and believes he may still be alive after being transported to the Void. The inquisitor resorts to occult magic, invoking Solael and Bysmiel, to attempt to summon Ulgrim, which fails as a Chthonian monster materializes in the air and prepares to attack Ulgrim with chaos magic. Creed shields himself from the blast, but is convinced he is not enough of a warlock to try to reach Ulgrim that way.
As John Bourbon and Amala come out of the riftgate and report an attack on Devil's Crossing by a massive Aetherial creation which came from Malmouth, Creed decides on a plan which will allow both to retake the fallen city and rescue Ulgrim. The path to Malmouth lies through Ugdenbog, where the refuge of a coven of witches is located. Creed instructs the Taken to request assistance from the witches there in finding Ulgrim. The inquisitor gives the protagonist a keepsake of the lost warrior.
The witches show familiarity with Ulgrim and express that they would prefer him not to be lost to the Void. They recruit the Taken's assistance, after which they instruct the player character to use Ulgrim's keepsake, now covered by runes, at the Altar of Rattosh to open a Chthonic rift, which may additionally allow the Taken to bypass the aetherfire-consumed lands between Ugdenbog and Malmouth.
Ulgrim's return[edit | edit source]
Beyond the rift eventually lies Void's Edge, where Ulgrim is sitting near the Loghorrean's corpse. Ulgrim is heavily injured and delirious, and the Taken has to convince him to remember them as his friend. Ulgrim reveals that he was ready when the Loghorrean was banished into the Void, and defeated the monster for a second and probably the final time. Ulgrim's injuries prevent him from fighting his way out of the Void alongside the Taken, so he requests the protagonist to clear the path for him while he follows through the shadows.
As the Taken finds a rift leading out of the Void, both warriors find themselves at the Lone Watch, past the aetherfire blockade and not far south from Malmouth. This location is inhabited by cultists of Ch'thon, still battling their Aetherial foe all across Mourndale. Ulgrim tells the protagonist to fight their way through the battlefield towards Malmouth Outskirts, and reactivate the riftgate there.
When this riftgate is reactivated, Ulgrim transports through. Since the bridge into the city is raised, Ulgrim sends the Taken through the only way inside – the sewers – where surviving members of Malmouth Resistance may be located (and as it turns out, are located). When the Malmouth Sewers riftgate is captured by the player character, Ulgrim transports through and reaches the resistance's hideout.
When the resistance's former base in the Steelcap District is recaptured, Ulgrim, having recovered about as far as it is possible, moves there in preparation for the final battle against the Aetherials in the city. By the time the Taken captures the Crown Hill riftgate, Ulgrim has recovered enough to follow through with a small contingent from the Black Legion and participate in this final battle.
Ulgrim's final instructions to the protagonist involve destruction of several ventilation shafts so that the sealed entrance to the Fleshworks is forced to open. Ulgrim does not follow the Taken through, and leaves it upon the player character to defeat Theodin Marcell singlehandedly.
After the Shaper of Flesh is defeated, Ulgrim returns to the Resistance's base in the Steelcap District. He can discuss plans for the future with the protagonist.
Possible ascendant?[edit | edit source]
Inquisitor Creed suspects Ulgrim of being not a mere mortal, but an ascendant. This suspicion is based on that Ulgrim's fighting skills seem far greater than would be expected for his apparent age, and Ulgrim's recollection of long-past historical events being as detailed as a memory of a direct witness. Additionally, the name Ulgrim apparently belonged to a mythic figure in the past. These suspicions fueled Creed's desire to reclaim Ulgrim when he was taken by the Void in the battle with the Loghorrean.
Some of the refugees Ulgrim protected at Deadman's Gulch also mention Ulgrim fighting better than seems possible given his apparent old age. A witch from the coven of Ugdenbog also referred to Ulgrim as a "legend".
Quotes[edit | edit source]
As a cook in Devil's Crossing[edit | edit source]
- How much do you know of the former Warden? Rumors of Krieg's strange and violent behavior even reached my ears in the distant capital. When he failed to respond to multiple summons, an agent was dispatched from the capital to... resolve the situation. Unfortunately, the Grim Dawn was unleashed before the man could reach Krieg. At least, I assume that must be what happened.
- I served a follower of Dreeg once. Now, I don't normally judge a man based on his beliefs, but those people believe in some twisted stuff. The all-seeing eye, the hidden realm the witch gods supposedly reside in, how Dreeg is the watching that guards the way. No wonder they're so uptight if they think someone is staring at them all the time! It's funny though, apparently someone was watching him after all. Not long after we parted ways, an inquisitor took him in for questioning and he was never seen again. At least, that's what I heard.
- Have you run into the Bloodsworn yet? The fanatical cult devoted to the supposed elder god Ch'thon? The cult has existed forever; some say since before recorded history. I always thought the myth of an elder god betrayed and gruesomely dismembered was too fantastical to be anything but the stuff of theatre but since the Grim Dawn, it seems the cult has newfound power and desperate men flock to swell their ranks. When I was wandering the outskirts of Burrwitch, I came upon some cultists who pressed me to join their ranks. At first they wouldn't take no for an answer but I treated them to some hearty stew and they troubled me no further. Never underestimate the power of good cooking.
- Ever consider a bowl of Slith stew? Don't. They may eat us and it seems only fair we should eat them back but I tried boiling one once and it ruined a set of pots and ladles. Incidentally, I heard a strange tale once that the Slith were created by humans. The story went that the Emperor's general staff wanted an army that could fight effectively in the southern swamps. Horrific human experimentation lead to the creation of a reptilian humanoid but they were uncontrollable, escaped captivity and began to breed out in the wilds. I'm sure that's just a legend though.
- When I was young, I had the misfortune to witness a banquet that was thrown for five Pathfinders of the biggest Rover bands at the time. It was supposed to be a peace offering but none of them left alive. The government thought the Rovers would disband once their leaders were dead but they just chose new ones and moves on. I regret how they were persecuted in the past but it seems generations spent roaming the wilderness and back roads of these lands while evading agents of the empire prepared them well for the Grim Dawn. They seem to be weathering it better than most and have taken in many refugees from the empire that once hunted them.
- Did I tell this one already? I once had to deal with a particularly rude dignitary from the capital who had even slighted the Emperor! The man made a huge fuss about his food being bland, so I whipped him up a little chef's special filled with my strongest spices. Let's just say he ran out there spilling from both ends. Oddly enough, I heard he died the next day. I hope it didn't have anything to do with the spices I used.
- Prior to the Grim Dawn, I served a meal to some gentlemen in the capital who were deep in conversation about a remarkable new method of travel using arcane gateways. They said it would allow the Emperor's armies, stationed in the capital, to appear almost instantly in the furthest provinces. Imagine to what lengths the emperor's general staff would go to procure such a decisive military advantage. You know, hearing myself say it, it sounds very similar to that portal you used to rescue me from the swamp.
- One thing still bothers me about the way events unfolded during the Grim Dawn. I was working in the capital during the weeks prior to the attack and I remember two of the three legions there were dispatched to remote provinces for seemingly no reason. It seemed very peculiar to me at time that they would leave the capital so exposed but, then again, I'm just a simple cook. Who am I to question the workings of the military.
- Don't discount the effectiveness of piercing weapons. They may not have the raw damage dealing power of a heavy mace or brutal axe but their ability to penetrate armor can be very effective against more heavily armored foes. At least, that's what I've heard and, you know, my profession has made me very familiar with blades. Being a cook, I mean.
- I've served more than a few men and woman whose ambition and lust for power exceeded their good sense. There are limits to human achievement and when we grasp beyond our ability, it inevitably leads to calamity. Sorry, that's a bit heavy for a mealtime conversation. What would I know; I am but a cook?
Other[edit | edit source]
- "It was known that anyone of significance who fomented discontent or posed a real threat to the rule of the emperor might be visited by the First Blade. I had never stirred such controversy but I always imagined, if such an encounter took place, I could put up a respectable fight. I never got the chance. Taken unawares, I was disarmed before I even knew what was happening. Had he sought my death, I would not have even witnessed the killing stroke fall. However, he seemed more interested in answers instead and, in turn, provided me with an account of his own events that confirmed my worst fears. The First Blade revealed that, only days prior, he had been forced to turn his knives on the Emperor himself, by his own command. Despite the myriad safeguards protecting the Emperor, both mundane and arcane, he had become host to an Aetherial. Through strength of mind, he had usurped his possessor long enough to summon the First Blade, command his own execution and charge the assassin with ensuring that his son, the young prince, survive to reclaim the throne. His last commands issued, the Emperor's consciousness slipped once again under the control of the Aetherial and a desperate battle ensued. The First Blade reported that he believed the Emperor and the Aetherial within him slain but, given his inexperience with the entities, could not say anything for certain. He relayed that he had secretly taken the prince and put him into hiding but declined to elaborate. The First Blade said he intended to retire his imperial title and had chosen the name Ulgrim, which made me curious as to whether it was an intentional reference to the mythic character." - Journal of Inquisitor Creed - 8th Entry
- "The emperor's spymaster and assassin. His name was stricken from all the records. His very identity erased so he could exist outside the boundaries of the law. This gave the emperor great freedom in handling matters some would deem objectionable to the throne. All knew it, none would dare bring it to light lest they have a meeting with the First Blade. He was truly unparalleled in his art; feared even by the Nightblades of the noble houses, many of whom silently met their end at his hands. One might question the morality of his job but not the ruthless effectiveness of his performance. I will say though, he did deliver a form of justice to many corrupt and vile men. He silenced many conflicts before they could grow into larger and bloodier ordeals." - Inquisitor Creed
Gallery[edit | edit source]
Ulgrim in Devil's Crossing