Guild Wars 2: Is The Mad King Realistic?

The pumpkin King Oswald Thorn isn't exactly realistic, but he isn't too far off.
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In a recent Wartower interview, ArenaNet developers Angel McCoy and Scott McGough were talking about the lore surrounding the current patch in Guild Wars 2.

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They were discussing the monarchs of Kryta, including the Mad King, Oswald Thorn; his Bloody Prince, Edric Thorn; and their distant descendant, Jennah. As the writers were discussing Krytan ruling society, it made me wonder how realistic the brutal stories of the Krytan court could be. 

In order to do this comparison of a real-life monarchy and a fictional Halloween bogeyman, I have to discount certain things.

I have to ignore the fact that Oswald was born crazy. Very few people are actually insane. Some of his acts could have been real, but not all of them together.

Oswald killed his father for the crown to Kryta. Dipendra of Nepal killed his father Birendra in 2001 for the crown.

Oswald allowed his best friend to get eaten by a worm. That is probably the most unusual part of his biography. The fact that Oswald fed his brother to a giant spider is much more true in comparison considering patricide is a tradition from the biblical story of Cain and Abel to Ashoka of India killing his brothers.

All of these deaths might seem implausible in one person’s life, but I think major parts of the Antic Harrower’s story are extremely possible. 

Parts of the Mad King’s story, other than the death, are more normal given our global history.

Oswald Thorn of Kryta was married eight times. Henry VIII of England married six women. Both monarchs started nation-wide conflicts over women and had a wife killed.

The Autumn Lunatic was murdered and then burned by a mob of angry peasants when his rule became too tyrannical. Culien of Scotland was killed when the military leader Amdarch burned him alive.

The Grim Japer isn’t based on any monarch in particular, nor is he particularly realistic in how many deaths he caused, but any single piece of his life could be real. That’s what makes him scary. That’s why he’s perfect for Halloween.

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GameSkinny intern, college student, and lifelong nerd.