The Shattered Realm
The Shattered Realm is unlike anything mankind has ever witnessed, teeming with wealth and power beyond imagining, but also dangers not unlike those that you face even now on Cairn. Whatever entity crafted this realm, it seems it has long vanished and, with its absence, the reality crumbles.
Unlike the Crucible DLC, the Shattered Realm is accessed from within the Main Campaign by visiting the new areas included in Forgotten Gods.
Traversing the Veil
Crossing between realities is no simple feat and while Cairn is subject to countless tears in the veil that allow not only the Aetherials to cross but also the vile Chthonians, actually transporting yourself beyond can be very punishing upon mortal flesh, if not outright lethal. Enter Mazaan, the Keeper of Portals.
Blessed by the Witch God Bysmiel to enhance his sensitivity to the veil itself, Mazaan has mastered the ability to tear through the fabric of reality and open the way to realms beyond. It is no mere coincidence that the Witch God cults established their foothold, the Conclave of the Three, where the veil is weakened in the Korvan Plateau.
The Shattered Realm is very much a reflection of Cairn’s physical reality, but broken and distorted. You will visit locations that seem familiar and yet not. It seemingly goes on forever, but as its celestial light fades so the insatiable darkness consumes it. The deeper you dig, the tougher the opposition will become.
As you delve deeper into this game mode, you will learn more about its tragic history and why it has come to be known as the Shattered Realm. You will bear witness to destruction in its raw form, to hunger insatiable.
As you delve deeper into the Shattered Realm, you will uncover the secret to creating Waystones at a Blacksmith. These Waystone allow you to start a Shattered Realm run at a more difficult shard.
Each Waystone has a range of Shards it grants access to, based on how far your character has progressed. The Waystone is consumed upon use.
Shattered Realm Mechanics
Endure the challenges of the Shattered Realm and defeat the guardians that await at the end of one of its Shards and you can claim its rewards. Or proceed deeper still, to greater threats and even greater wealth.
The Shattered Realm is inherently unstable. If you spend too long gathering the souls of its damned denizens, then some of the wealth will destabilize and vanish forever into nothingness. Move quickly, the clock is ticking!
Note: defeating many enemies in rapid succession will earn you a bonus to the timer. In contrast, dying will penalize the timer.
The treasures within the Shattered Realm are as mysterious as the reality itself. You will encounter rewards that cannot be found anywhere else, including the most powerful Rune Augments in existence and an item set that reflects your mastery of this unstable reality.
Note: the timer does not exclude you from these exclusive rewards.
Every enemy you slay in the Shattered Realm fills the progress bar, enabling you to proceed to the next Chunk. Sometimes, your foes will drop a Shattered Soul. Common and Champion enemies have a small chance to drop them, while heroes and Nemesis foes will always drop more potent souls.
Whenever you absorb one of these souls, you will not only make bonus progress, you will also claim a fragment of the realm’s power for yourself, granting you increased damage and toughness for a few seconds. Claim another soul and the buff stacks up and refreshes its duration.
The deeper you go in the Shattered Realm, the more stacks you can collect, turning you into a wrecking ball of destruction capable of crushing even the mightiest challenges the reality has to offer.
Make a Bargain
Do you like power? So do the gods. But what are you willing to sacrifice for it? As you traverse the Shattered Realm, you will uncover unique shrines. Make an offering to them in the form of rare crafting materials and you will be bestowed a boon, but beware: all great gifts come with a trade-off.
Shrine of Azrakaa
Make a pact with Azrakaa, granting you Increased Resistance to Slow and Crowd Control effects, but your Critical Strikes are Weakened.
Shrine of Oleron
Fill yourself with OIeron’s Bloodlust, granting you Increased Damage, but you become more Vulnerable to Physical attacks.
Shrine of Rattosh
Split your soul between this reality and the one beyond the veil, granting you Increased Resistance against All Damage, but your Health is reduced.
Shrine of Vire
Make your skin as stone, granting you Increased Armor, but at the cost of Offensive Ability.
Shrine of Death
Strike a bargain with death, granting you astonishing Offensive Power and Regeneration, but at the cost of Resistances.
As you progress through the Shattered Realm, you will have to endure more and more Mutators, just as in the Crucible DLC Mutators are global effects applied to all monsters or players, each one a unique twist that strengthens monsters/players in some way.
The Shattered Realm begins with 1 Mutator, but up to 8 can become active at once. The Mutators are randomized each time you visit a new Shard.
Monsters leech health back with every attack.
Monsters are tainted with poison, dealing additional Poison damage.
Players are more Resistant to Chaos.