***SPOILER WARNING*** I will be describing the Nomad’s Requiem quest in detail, so if you hate spoilers and absolutely cannot stand them (like me), don’t read this article. You have been warned. Don’t go screaming about it otherwise, because common sense would incline me to simply laugh at your demise.
Now then. Nomad’s return.
It’s been at least a year since I faced off against the bald, soul-sucking psychopath. With powerful attacks and intense special abilities, it was a true test of endurance and strength. The faster you killed him, the less you had to endure. And even Runescape’s toughest adventurers would go down easily if they didn’t have the resource to continue fighting.
But the battle was a grandmaster quest in itself. Still the hardest to date. Vanstrom, well, he may be cheap, but during the fourth attempt on the day it came out, I figured out how to dodge and fight properly, and it only cost me 3 rows of Saradomin Brews. When I fought Nomad the day AFTER he came out (my sixth attempt), I used up nearly my full inventory (and my tortoise’s) of Saradomin Brews, and I finally succeeded without a dose to spare.
He fell, I got Zimberfizz to discuss rewards over his dead body, and we left. But it wasn’t over. The body had vanished when I turned back for one last look, and I smelled the faint fizz of a recent teleport. Nomad was still alive, and Saradomin knows where he’s hiding out now.
I highly doubt this is the last we’ll see of Nomad. In fact, I anticipated him to pop up at some random time during the Ritual of the Mahjarrat quest, despite the Nomad’s Requiem quest not being a requirement. Granted, after how we chased him out of his power-gathering setup, he’s going to have us second on his list right below Zamorak, but something still tells me we’re not going to fight him head-on this time. We already fought him at full power, and we already beat him at full power. Home-advantage, too. The man’s brilliant enough to know that the head-on approach will not work again.
So, when the quest comes out, where do we stand? These are my analyses:
1: Nomad continues to grow stronger.
It’s easier to do things twice. Common sense. I highly doubt Nomad’s simply gone into hiding and is waiting and twiddling his thumbs. He’d either have a backup plan already in motion, or he’s already building another machine somewhere else where death and souls are plentiful. Perhaps the wilderness?
2: Nomad will appear again during a ritual to bring Zamorak back.
This one’s quite obvious, actually. He hates Zamorak, and the whole reason he became the Scourger of Souls is for revenge against the Godly Mahjarrat. He has become wicked powerful, and I don’t doubt he’ll be able to do a number on the unholy Lord himself should the need arise.
But he is smart. He rigged up all those crazy machines all on his own (not counting various minions), including one that turns creature souls into power. Despite his enhancements, he is also a well trained warrior, elderly enough to have perhaps endured the end chaos of the God Wars. Being smart, he would more likely stop Zamorak’s return single-handedly rather than allow him to reappear just to get in a couple of hits before getting evapourated. Having been chased out, he no longer has the speedy surefire way of increasing his own power, and he might doubt he will be ready.
He also knows that there are efforts being made to bring Zamorak back. Those instigating efforts know that Nomad knows. They’ve been sending assassins to stop him from interfering, and he has no qualms butchering Zamorakians.
3: Nomad is still influencing Soul Wars.
I may be a little farfetched here, but I strongly believe that Nomad is still influencing the Soul Wars field to prevent you from getting sucked into the soul obelisk.
During the tutorial, Nomad told us that it was his magic that prevented us from getting trapped in the soul obelisk ourselves, as he said he “had more of a use for us alive”. Upon asking Zimberfizz about it after Nomad was gone, the excuse is that he believes the Soul Obelisk “grew a liking to us”. In my opinion, that’s kind of contradicting the point of it.
The Soul Obelisk consumes souls. Simple. That’s all it does. If it, perhaps had a sentient mind as Zimberfizz implies, then “taking a liking” would much sooner mean that it would prefer our souls to the ones of the creatures we slay. I mean, after it took in Saradomin knows how many pyrefiends, if it has the ability to like and hate, one would think that it would sooner get sick of the creatures we kill and instead turn to more fresher, interesting souls. Probably more powerfuller ones, too.
Also, because Nomad kept our souls away from it all this time, the Soul Obelisk never really got to experience us. So how could it take a liking to something it doesn’t even know?
Looking back at point one, assuming that to be true (and I don’t doubt it is), then Zimberfizz obviously made up the excuse to cover up that Nomad is still alive and operating things behind the scenes.
Secondly, Nomad created the avatars of creation and destruction. He had a “prototype” down in his dungeon of the avatar of creation, which you had to solo. Either he created wild creatures, or creatures with a purpose to hang out in Soul Wars, or he’s directly controlling them. One of these three.
If they were wild, they would surely take dislike to the beatings we give them and run off. Find a new place to delve, away from the Soul Obelisk. If they were being controlled… well, this one’s self-explanatory. If Nomad really was gone, the control would also be gone, and they would run rampant. If they had the sole purpose of existing in their corners in Soul Wars without Nomad’s control, how could Nomad truly pass them off as true, worldly avatars of creation and destruction? Wouldn’t it be natural for them to keep changing their battlefields and try for an advantage against their opponent? Or perhaps retreat somewhere when they get exhausted or at a disadvantage? Avatar of Creation makes its base on Entrana while the Avatar of Destruction takes refuge in the wilderness.
Again, I may be teetering on the plausible line with this one. But this next one will make up for it.
4: Zimberfizz knows Nomad is still alive.
That’s right! Imagine that, huh? Zimberfizz, minion no more, is really just using the guise to cover up the fact that Nomad is still alive. And he knows it! Not only that, but I believe he’s still taking orders! Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if Nomad’s still down there, gathering power and using this simple “Zimberfizz makes a profit off bottled soul” to keep your interest from delving once more in the great caverns!
Here’s why: Zimberfizz’s paranoia. Imagine you were him for a second. You did all the dirty work, running errands, heavy-lifting, and probably even licking his boots clean every morning (they were awfully clean during the fight…). Half the time, you were summoned forth by your master for an important task. Obediently, you ask “Yes, Master”?, and he turns to this stranger and says, “Curb-stomp my minion because I’m too lazy to haul in a caped dummy or skeleton”. And this stranger proceeds to do so without remorse (it’s a tutorial, after all). Twice. And there are literally a million strangers out there. And as you vanish in a half-crippled whisp, you hear Nomad laughing at you.
There’s no doubt Zimberfizz hates being a minion, but at the same time, he knows Nomad, and any attempts at retaliation would result in a very harsh punishment.
So then he asks you to check up on what Nomad is doing, out of curiousity or paranoia, despite his warning and strict order not to interfere (has to be, since he doesn’t even allow Zimberfizz down there). Immediately, you were caught by Nomad, who discovers it was Zimberfizz’s doing, and because he could still use you, he tells you to just leave without harming you. Plan goes out the window. You tell Zimberfizz, and he knows he’s in very hot water now.
Then, he does something strange. He tells you to disregard the warning and try again. He’s all-out rebelling against Nomad! Either he really wants to know, or he really wants you to take him out or teach him a lesson!
So, quest, quest, fight Nomad, die a bunch, win once, done. You return, finally tell him what he’s been up to (instead of before you fight him, or after you learn his plan and escape through the convenience of death; yay common sense…), and he freaks out.
He just wanted to know what Nomad was up to, he says. It was nothing but curiosity! You weren’t supposed to kill him! But, since you did, you have to give him his head for whatever reason. To prove he’s dead (Buddy, I would have just brought back his awesome weapon or strip him of that scarf; proof enough). Of course, you don’t have his head, and he freaks out again, screaming that if there was the remote chance he was still alive, he’d have both your heads once he recovers.
So you take Zimberfizz down there and kick Nomad a bit. And what does the paranoid, freaking-out, rebellious imp do?
He just accepts it! No open wounds, no puddle of blood, not even a peer at his possibly gaping, lifeless eyes. You kick him. That means he’s dead to Zimberfizz, who was freaking out about the minor possibility he wasn’t. Nonsense!
And I’m going to go on the assumption that all this wasn’t poorly planned story-writing. And if Jagex is reading, I would rather suggest a few improvements to future quest ideas instead of rant about examples of past quest ideas. But for the sake of argument, let’s say this was intentional.
Let’s assume Zimberfizz suddenly truly believes Nomad is dead.
First off: as I’ve already proven, he is paranoid AND rebellious. He would’ve put a safeguard on it and stabbed Nomad in the neck. After witnessing many a battle on the Soul Wars pitch (and being, you know, a “demon”), I highly doubt he is afraid of blood.
Second off: he would’ve definitely had the machine destroyed. Who were you to be trusted? He sends you in to investigate Nomad’s plan, and you go ahead and butcher him with your best efforts. What is stopping your power-hungry thirst for death from taking the soul machine to power yourself up?
And third: let’s not forget that to start the bottling process, Zimberfizz would’ve had to have returned down there and discovered the body was missing. Knowing that Nomad was out there, having heard his plan of using all his 20 years of hard work for Zimberfizz’ own benefit, that probably would’ve freaked him out so much he would’ve just plain run away. Or returned to the demon realm.
So now, let’s assume that, from the kicking perhaps, that Zimberfizz heard a minute groan or something from Nomad that you didn’t hear. He knows Nomad is alive.
Therefore, he wouldn’t have tried the safeguard, as that would’ve involved Nomad suddenly jumping back up and strangling him, if not for a bit of vengeance. Perhaps planting his weapon in your surprised, probably 50-life-left-anyways hide. Both of you downed in one surprise shot.
He also stops you from destroying the machine and suggests bottling the souls it “processes” for money. Bit of a farfetched idea (can you really bottle souls?), but the means and motives are there. However, the true reason is because, since he knows Nomad is alive, it would be in his interest to redeem himself by keeping the pesky adventurer thinking that he’s dead, while still having the soul machine to gather/restore power with.
Lastly, of course, when Zimberfizz returns to find the body missing, he would not at all be surprised. It would be sitting back in the chair, waiting for him. He would probably take a kick for his negligence and rebellious action from Nomad, but at the same time, it would give Nomad not only the privacy against such a well-known adventurer, but also with Zimberfizz “running” the game, he has more time to himself in the tent – something of which he had been trying for more of lately.
Makes much more sense, doesn’t it? It has to be the case! Zimberfizz knows Nomad is alive, and continues to serve him!
So, that’s where it stands. We are definitely not done with Nomad yet. However, I am looking forward to our rematch.
And this time, I will have his weapon for myself! The head can stay on its body. I’m not a monster.