The Shadowfell

A place of deep shadows, of familiar yet alien landscapes, of vistas that snatch the breath, and of mind-rending visions, the Shadowfell is the gloomy reflection of the natural world. It is a plane dimmed and dulled by a pervasive and insidious pall. The home of the dead, the realm of the forsaken, a haven of the lost and the twisted, the birthplace of wretched creatures famous for their grief and sorrow — the Plane of Shadow is all this and more.

Creatures sometimes perceive time differently in the Shadowfell from how they do in the world. Rather than passing with the rise or fall of the sun, time moves based on the gloom infecting one’s mind. As a person succumbs to depression and apathy, time seems to slow to a crawl. If one sinks into the deepest depths of despair, time seems to stop entirely.

A visitor to the Shadowfell might feel as though days or weeks have passed, when in fact years have gone by on his or her native plane. More than one traveler has ventured into the Shadowfell, only to find that when he or she returned home, everything that person loved and cherished was gone.

The superstitious claim that the Shadowfell caresses the natural world wherever the sun cannot reach. Its entrances huddle in old closets, among darkened doorways, and under the cloying darkness of the deepest dungeons. Common folk make signs against evil or whisper a quick prayer before continuing down dim streets, so strong is the fear that the Shadowfell evokes. These qualms stem from misapprehensions about the plane, born from mortal fears of death and what might lie beyond. Most know that when the flesh fails, into the darkness goes the spirit. No one can say with certainty what comes next.

The Shadowfell is one of the more accessible planes. In fact, on rare occasions, travelers have stumbled into it by accident. Places where the boundary between the world and the Shadowfell are thin are known as shadow crossings. Some intersections are naturally occurring, the result of ancient planar conjunctions or catastrophes. These crossings often occur in low-lying, deeply shadowed spots—forested hollows, mist-blanketed bogs, or the bottoms of caverns and ravines. Other junctions form in places where the forces of death are prevalent—graveyards, battlefields, and other places that bore witness to mass death.

The Raven Queen makes her home here rather than the Astral Sea.


Locations in The Shadowfell

Major Cities/Towns
Gloomwrought
• Letherna, Realm of the Raven Queen

Other Noteworthy Sites
The storm prison of Orcus’ soul

Known Shadow Crossings
The Keep over the Shadow Rift
• The Tower of Dal Nystere?

The Shadowfell

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