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Diablo Lore: The Soulstones Saga, Part 2

Soulstones continue to be pivotal plot points in Diablo games.



Last time on The Soulstones Saga

Last week’s episode concluded with the Dark Wanderer and his sniveling batman Marius setting off from the Rogue Monastery and traveling always into the East. The corrupting power of the Crimson Soulstone had caused the former Prince Aidan to transform into the tortured host for Diablo. What diabolical designs had driven this emissary from Hell over the mountains of Khanduras and into the deserts of Aranoch?


Passage to the East

Not long after Aidan’s departure, the town of Tristram became overrun once again with demon spawn that spewed from the depths of the Cathedral. News of this traveled quickly, and glory seeking-adventurers began showing up in the area. All of them were eventually run off or defeated, except for one particular Hero (insert player character name here), who had arrived at the nearby Rogue Encampment. He was greeted by Akara, High Priestess of the Sisterhood of the Sightless Eye, who decidedly set him to the task of rescuing Deck Cain from the overrun Tristram.

Upon Cain’s safe return to the Encampment, the Hero learned that the old man he had just rescued was the last surviving member of an eccentric order of mages known as the Horadrim. Cain shared the details of the sensational events that had taken place in Tristram, including how Prince Aidan had emerged victorious from the Cathedral after defeating Diablo. However, by the time Aidan left Tristram, it had become obvious to Cain what had actually happened, and that Diablo was on the loose again and traveling east.

Cain explained that Diablo had to be followed in order to learn what the demon lord was seeking. The only available route to the east was through a mountain pass in the Tamoe Highlands. The pass was guarded by the Rogue Monastery, which had been occupied by Andariel, the Maiden of Anguish, who was blocking the way through. The Hero valiantly proceeded to the Monastery and defeated Andariel, thus clearing the way east.


Tomb of Tal Rasha
Tomb of Tal Rasha

Canyon of the Magi

In Lut Gholein, Deckard Cain continued to serve as mentor while he and the Hero pressed forward on their quest to determine Diablo’s objective. By means of a series of challenging trials, including a mind-bending trip through the Arcane Sanctuary, the Hero had managed to recover the Horadric Cube, used it to reforge the Horadric Staff, and had determined the location of the Tomb of Tal Rasha.

The Hero then traveled in haste to the Canyon of the Magi and battled his way through the Tomb in an attempt to prevent Diablo from releasing Baal. After using the Horadric Staff to enter the outer chamber, the Hero was confronted by Andariel’s twin brother Duriel, the Lord of Pain, who apparently also developed a predilection for maggots at some point.

The Hero dispatched Duriel (yeah, like it was that easy), and entered the main chamber to discover that Tyrael had been imprisoned there in place of Tal Rasha. Diablo, Baal, and the Amber Soulstone were already gone, and it became obvious that Diablo’s next stop would be to find his brother Mephisto in the Temple City of Travincal.


Durance of Hate
Hell Portal

The Durance of Hate

As mentioned in last week’s article, the three Prime Evils, from within their Soulstones, had corrupted the minds of those who had been charged with guarding them. Mephisto was no exception, and he had succeeded in corrupting Sankekur, a high-ranking member of the Zakarum order. After compelling Sankekur to eliminate Khalim, the leader of the Church, Mephisto possessed Sankekur as his mortal host in the same manner as Diablo had done with Aidan.

All of that had already transpired prior to the Hero’s arrival in Kurast, and upon reaching the deepest level of the Durance of Hate, the Hero encountered the resurrected Mephisto. After defeating the frenzied members of the Zakarum High Council, as well as Mephisto himself, the Sapphire Soulstone was recovered from what had once been Sankekur.

Cain then explained that the tainted Sapphire and Crimson Soulstones had to be destroyed in order to prevent them from ever being used again for evil purposes. The only way to destroy them was for the Hero to travel through the Hell Portal and to use the Anvil of Fury at the Hellforge (i.e. toss the One Ring into the fires of Mount Doom), and the only way to obtain the Crimson Soulstone was to get Capone! 😮


Chaos Sanctuary
Chaos Sanctuary

The Chaos Sanctuary

Using the Pandemonium Fortress as a base of operations, the Hero fought his way across the Plains of Despair. It was during that crossing when he encountered Izual, the dirty scoundrel who had tipped off the Prime Evils about the Soulstones and, by doing so, set the stage for the first two games in the series. Despite having done so much for the world of ARPGs, Izual was, nevertheless, struck down and dropped a really cool sword called Azurewrath.

With no time to lose, the Hero stocked up on Rejuvenation Potions and then marched on the Chaos Sanctuary. Once all five warding seals had been unlocked, the Lord of Terror was summoned, and the battle commenced. After a few rounds of kiting and tele-stomping, while using the Lut Gholein mercenary as a human shield, the Hero succeeded in vanquishing Diablo once again. The Crimson and Sapphire Soulstones were then triumphantly laid upon the Hellforge and smashed into smithereens. The End.

Okay, but what about Curly?

Ah yes, you’re right, brother number three; whatever happened to him? Flashback to when the Hero had arrived in the main chamber within the Tomb of Tal Rasha. Well, it turns out that the Dark Wanderer had already been there, of course, with his utterly incompetent companion Marius. When Tyrael showed up, he had attempted to stop the demon lords from getting away. Unfortunately, Baal’s essence had seized upon the weak mind of Marius and compelled him to remove the Soulstone from Tal Rasha’s chest, thus releasing Baal.

However, while Tyrael was busy dealing with the Dark Wanderer, Marius ran off with the Soulstone and kept running until he reached an asylum where he sought refuge. In time, Baal managed to resurrect himself and to track down Marius. He then retrieved the Amber Soulstone and rewarded Marius by slowly roasting him to perfection with those nice burnt edges.

The Real Plan All Along

You all remember that, during the period known as the Dark Exile, the three Prime Evils had intended to conscript humanity as their weapon against the High Heavens. Although he didn’t know it at the time, Tyrael had given the Primes exactly what they needed to accomplish their goal, which were the Soulstones. After being tipped off by Izual about how to taint the stones, the brothers had simply allowed themselves to be captured by the Horadrim.

Worldstone Chamber
Worldstone Chamber

Once Tyrael was satisfied and no longer paying much attention, they proceeded with their plan to dominate their captors, release themselves, and use the tainted Soulstones to corrupt the Worldstone. With the corrupted Worldstone as their Death Star, nothing could have stopped them from claiming dominion over all creation. There was no doubt, then, where the Hero would find Baal, and that would be in the Worldstone Chamber.

After arriving in Horagath at the base of Mount Arreat, then rescuing a whole bunch of Barbarians, and making it all the way to the Arreat Summit, yadda yadda yadda, the Hero fought his way into the Worldstone Keep. Next up was the Throne of Hatred where the Hero defeated multiple waves of enemies in a battle reminiscent of the one with the Evil Genius at end of Time Bandits.

At long last, the Hero entered the Worldstone Chamber and diligently defeated Baal. The problem was, though, that the Lord of Destruction had already used the Amber Soulstone to corrupt the Worldstone.

Tyrael’s Epic Dilemma

Tyrael arrived in the Chamber and was apprised of the situation. His original goal of protecting the inhabitants of Sanctuary from the injustices of the Prime Evils had backfired grievously. Were he to have left things as they were, the corruption of the Worldstone would have continued to grow in power. The fate of all those who lived on Sanctuary would surely have been in great jeopardy.

Tyrael decided that there was only one thing he could do. After removing the Hero to safety, Tyrael flung El’druin, the Sword of Justice, into the Worldstone, thus obliterating it along with the Amber Soulstone and himself as well. What was left in the aftermath was a massive crater where the mountain had once stood.

Tune in Next Time

So, what happened to Sanctuary following the destruction of the Worldstone? How would humanity deal with the Greater Evils without the Soulstones? There was also more gossip from New Tristram about Deckard Cain spending some late nights in the library with a girl who was young enough to be his granddaughter. I mean, was that even legal? The answers to those questions, and much more, will be revealed in Part 3 of the Soulstones Saga.

I am also delighted to announce that I’m on the schedule for Phoenix Fan Fusion again this year on Memorial Day weekend. To make the weekend even more special, I will be joined on stage by none other than Diablo streaming luminary WyzeFool! Together we will be presenting three Diablo 4 panels, the first of which will feature even more of Neyrelle’s story as part of the Vessel of Hatred lore. Additional details will be announced here at PureDiablo over the next few weeks, including some exclusive giveaways. Diablo fans in the Metro Phoenix area will not want to miss this exciting event and we hope to see all of you there!


We would love to hear your feedback on this topic, so please sound off in the comments section below, or contact me on Twitter. Do also let me know if you have any ideas or suggestions for future topics here at PureDiablo. In the meantime, be sure to keep an eye on the news feed so you’ll have all the up-to-date info you need to get the most out of your game.

If you believe that any of the information shared above is inaccurate in any way, please let us know, along with a reference for the correct information, so we can update this document accordingly.

Gazerrick ArmsGazerrick is a staff writer for PureDiablo who focuses primarily on casual gaming interests and lore for the Diablo community. When not hacking and slashing his way through a new Season, he can be found participating in, and presenting at, various pop culture conventions in southern Arizona. You can follow him on Twitter @Gazerrick9000 for even more of his gaming indulgences. A collection of his creative media is also available at Cactus Palm Perspectives.

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