ROCK WAR! ROCK WAR!
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ROCK WAR! ROCK WAR!

When a Good Rock Goes to War, Rocky Entertainment, Children of the Hypocritical Highlanders, Fortnite Rocks, Coliseum of the Gods, Stonehenge vs. Easter Island1

Conspectus

In the year of our Defilement 42343, certain gods desired entertainment, but found themselves in a conundrum. They desired something exhilarating, something akin to the gladiator duels of Rome, but they wanted the spectacle to be far grander. On the other hand, these gods disliked the bloodiness of such duels, believing it to be too barbaric of a sport.2 And so, they founded the Coliseum of the Gods: a colossal arena housing five tribes of monoliths. The creators, whom we deem the Hypocritical Highlanders, stuck to a laissez-faire approach to their monoliths.

The fickle gods lost interest all the same3, forcing the monoliths to take the reins of society into their own hands.

Currently, the Coliseum is located deep within the ice fields of Antarctica. The Jailors have set up a base near the arena, masking it as an international research station. Entry seems to be invitation-only, which poses a question as to how the Jailors obtained such permission to enter such a privileged area.4

Knowledge

Traits:

  • The arena is made exclusively out of marble, carved out of a single stone. The Hypocritical Highlanders desired perfection, and what was more ideal of a sculpting material than marble? There was no need to painfully carve out edge after edge; no, these gods willed the stone to its desired shape.5
  • Five tribes of monoliths participate within: Envy, Letch, Indulgence, Indolence, and Arrogance. Brother Nevryn has vocally voiced his distaste for such nomenclature standards, complaining of how the pattern of sins should imply seven tribes, rather than five.6 Four of the tribes move via sliding across the ground, and these brilliant creations begin degrading upon feeling the shiver of steel upon their skin.7
    • Envy: Made of granite. Smooth on one face, with Nordic runes inscribed. Breeding like vermin, their likeness is akin to the edge of a cliff. Oh, how unholy are their voices, whose screams are the echoes of millenia-old glaciers scraping against the desolate landscape!
    • Letch: Erected from sandstone. Described by Brother Nevryn as sculptures split cleanly in half.8 Multiplying and invading any and all crevices like insects, they seem just as frail as the bugs. Colloquially known as cannon fodder, have been recorded squeaking in a primitive form of communication.
    • Indulgence: Carved from obsidian. Perfectly carved to resemble Mayan imagery. Less populous, but can expel projectiles or even detonate as part of its arsenal. No recorded sounds. Unfortunately, Brother Nevryn was not keen on giving a more in-depth description.9
    • Indolence: Composed of basalt. Resembles a large tombstone, with bones embedded into it. Moves the fastest, and appears to lack the weakness against iron that the other tribes possess. Have been described to groan and wail.10
    • Arrogance: Made of an as-of-yet unidentified material, and are proven to be sapient, communicating via Morse Code. Perfectly smooth on all sides, can float, have an opening described as their eye which emits light, and have etchings resembling Nazca lines on them.1112
  • Spectators: Various gods of a bygone era. These Hypocritical Highlanders worked together to build the coliseum, but have gradually lost interest in the spectacle; that is, until the Jailors arrived. They dislike outsiders, and refuse entry to those they deem lesser, although entry can be persuaded by gifts of precious metals. Brother Nevryn, however, insists on using the term "bribery" to explain how he acquired his entry ticket.

Nature:

  • The Envy tribe follows an autocracy, governed by a matriarch. The matriarch is apparently determined by the smartest of the tribe: challengers may duel with the matriarch to assume control of the tribe, and the winner is determined by who can trick the other into falling down and shattering themselves.13
  • The Letch tribe has no discernible leader; rather, they stick together to keep a watch out for enemies. These are beloved for their affectionate personalities, if not for their naivety. According to documents retrieved by the Jailors, they can be tamed and domesticated if given treats of quartz crystals and sandstone.14
  • The Indulgence tribe groups themselves into packs of two to four individuals. There appears to be designated roles during fights: two members engage in melee, one provides ranged support, and one participates only when self-detonation is necessary.
  • The Indolence tribe is a tribe in name only: each member adopts a solitary lifestyle upon birth.1516 All members appear to be highly aggressive, using the momentum of their movements in order to attack. However, their recklessness and solitary lifestyle means they tend to thin their numbers via fighting for mates or annoying spectators by leaving the boundaries. The irony of the sin of sloth moving incredibly fast is not lost on us.
  • The last tribe is the Arrogance tribe. As the least populous tribe, their governing style is true democracy. Questioning has not revealed much on whether they are individualistic or a collective entity.17

The spectators are a prideful bunch who do not wish to converse with beings they deem as lesser. They come in various shapes and sizes, with bodies that obey neither radial nor bilateral symmetry. In any case, they tend to brag among themselves about how much wealth or power they have accumulated, and will eagerly accept bribes from others in exchange for favors. They do not interfere with the arena, seeing as the tribes do not appear to have noticed the waning interest over the years, nor the sudden surge in interest once the Jailors began entering the arena. Brother Nevryn has described overhearing them discuss Jailor weaponry as "the plates that shoot out chunks of iron.

All tribes except the Arrogance tribe show unquestioning loyalty to the spectators, and have been observed to create ideograms of religious worship.

History & Associated Parties: The Hypocritical Highlanders were not the first to propose such an idea, but they were the first to succeed. Before them were the Obnoxious Ones, the Ignorant Isolationists, the Arrogant Architects, and more recently the Scornful Sculptors.18 All of these groups were prideful in their own right, but the Hypocritical Highlanders took arrogance to another level: they refused to stop building even when it became apparent the idea was ridiculous.

The Jailors have been welcomed into the coliseum with relative warmness. Although annoying as we have yet to obtain such a privilege, it is thanks to their relative laxness in dealing with this anomaly that Brother Nevryn could easily secure the documents.19

The Merchants are also attempting to establish connections with the spectators, although business appears to be slow due to the greedy nature of the Highlanders.

The Bookburners recently discovered the arena after investigating the base set up by the Jailors. Mercifully, the spectators show extreme animosity towards them for attempting to interfere in the games.

The Robber Barons appear to have a mutualistic relationship with the coliseum spectators. In exchange for curious and magical wares provided by the Robber Barons, the Hypocritical Highlanders will provide materials that resemble the substances that the Arrogance tribe is composed of. Documents recovered from the Bookburners suggest that the Robber Barons have recently sold anomalous products with a make similar to the Arrogance tribe. They seem particularly annoyed at being unable to damage such incredibly durable items.20

As far as we can ascertain, the coliseum's purpose has not deviated much from its original incarnation. The Hypocritical Highlanders may have stopped interacting with the games, yes, but fundamentally the basis of a battle royale still exists.21 A few notable beings have visited the arena, though, including, but not limited to, Barnabus Stinson the Third, Thiomecy-Who-Gathered-Boron, and I-That-Wish-To-Be-Named. Most of these beings share the characteristic of being incredibly wealthy, although recently it appears the prices for bribing tickets has gone down, as Brother Nevryn was able to enter and still afford concessions.

Approach:
Each tribe has developed their own unique traditions and cultures:

  • When approaching the Envy tribe, keep in mind that they value strength and cunning. They will act hostile if they see you. They will hound you persistently until you prove your strength by preventing them from crushing you within 30 seconds.22 They do not appear to disqualify the usage of tools or other objects, so use that to your advantage. Do not challenge the matriarch unless you feel like leading an entire tribe of monoliths.
  • The Letch tribe are a timid group, and offerings of sandstone and quartz will suffice in building trust. Avoid any sudden movements, as they are frightened easily. Be mindful to avoid offerings with impurities in them, as those induce allergy-like symptoms in the receiver and ferment distrust.
  • When approaching the Indulgence tribe, avoid eye contact if possible until they touch you gently. Avoid meeting them in large groups, as they view this as a sign of hostility.
  • As of now, no known method has been found to placate the Indolence tribe. Avoid if possible.23
  • The Arrogance tribe have adopted the standard policies of courtesy from the Jailors. However, they have also been compliant when asked to steal documents from the Jailors. Due to this lack of loyalty, stay vigilant around them.24
  • Do understand that the Hypocritical Highlanders' obnoxious attitude stems from millennia of xenophobia. While it is understandable to be infuriated by their bigotry, please avoid interacting with them unless you intend on giving them an offering. The Jailors have unfortunately spoiled them with trinkets and the like, causing them to believe that any and all interactions must involve giving them something or else you are disrespecting this. Furthermore, we cannot help you should you anger one of these spectators. Brother Nevryn was lucky in that an incredible head wound managed to incapacitate the entity chasing after him, but otherwise death follows the fool that would prod these mighty beings.

Other Detail: Considering the general area is more or less overrun with various groups of interest, it would be advisable not to visit the arena for some time, unless you can be sure that a spectator is willing to vouch for you. We assume no connection to the idiots that find themselves tortured by the Bookburners for information, or enslaved by the Robber Barons, all for the sake of watching a spectacle that can be replicated in one's own garden. Yes, we honor everyone as brothers and sisters, but we also expect a certain degree of common sense.25

Observations & Stories

Alright, so here we fucking go. So, you ever read those books where people are put in an area and forced to kill one another? Hunger Games or Battle Royale, doesn't matter. The point is, it's not like that. This shit is boring. Unless you're lucky enough to watch an Indolence ram into the dumbass standing in front of it, you're better off watching the spectators smite the Bookburners for trying to force their way in. ~ Nevryn Faelligan26

Doubt

Truth be told, no one can truly ascertain the intentions of the Hypocritical Highlanders when they made this arena. As Brother Nevryn so vehemently proposes, this spectacle is anything but interesting, and attention has appeared to wane for most of its history.

Additionally, the veracity of the claims that the spectators of now are the original Highlanders is debateable, in due part because all the spectators refuse to create anything aside from trading materials.27

Furthermore, the very existence of the Arrogance tribe is perplexing, namely in part because they seem all too convenient of a species. While sapient, they possess a disturbing loyalty to the spectators which somehow they can detect and communicate with, but the other tribes cannot. Records from the Jailors state that this loyalty has yet to be diminished, and accounts from Brother Nevryn suggest that these entities may be working to undermine Jailor influence. Brother Nevryn has also stated that these entities have an absurdly huge advantage over the other tribes, yet they are pacifistic to the last member. It is unknown whether this was a design oversight form the Highlanders.28

Finally, there seems to be a relatively anachronistic turn of events in the coliseum. The spectators act excitedly once a Jailor researcher enters the arena to conduct studies, as though the researcher was the first human they met with, yet their interactions with the Merchants and the Robber Barons suggest that they have interacted with humans for at least a millennium. Furthermore, records show they possess weapons of mass destruction due to these trading encounters, yet appeared not to understand how basic firearms worked. Perhaps the Highlanders are wiser than Brother Nevryn gives them credit for, and that they have their own ulterior motives for a naive facade.29

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