All newly born adventurers in Avalon begin life with only an insubstantial taste of the skills which they might one day learn. The Academies are charitable institutions set up by city councils that invite all novices to join so that they may be trained in a few more of the basic adventuring skills.
From the Square of Silverfalls at the centre of the city you must cross the high bridge eastward to the "Ledge before waterfall" location. From there, go north through the waterfall itself into the 'secret city' and the Street of the Lanterns. The Orphanage's imposing archway is directly west as the underground roadway begins, lit by its brilliant globes of luminescence - as is most of the wondrous 'secret quarter' of the city risen from the plundered ruins of once-proud Springdale.
Before you can progress to a fully-fledged guild you must have graduated from your city's Orphanage and then its school: this period being your novicehood in Avalon. The novicehood leads onto the all-important choice of profession and the commencement of your time as a guild apprentice.
The Orphanage will teach you much about the game, your character and about the city of your birth - the only city in Avalon founded by exiles from a homeland destroyed by an enemy army: when Thakrian hordes smashed the fortifications of Springdale, the city of dreams, and systematically razed, plundered and despoiled all they saw. Springdale's ruins lay buried, to this day, beneath the placid farmlands of the central plains and Silverfalls was built up following the armistice. The wounds of Springdale's destruction have never healed for some - many remain in self-imposed exile centuries later - but Silverfalls is a major force in the land and well deserves to be spoken of as Avalon's fourth great city.
Upon joining the Orphanage, you will have gained ten of the twelve so-called "general" skills. These skills are common to all Avalonians and include abilities across the full spectrum of a character's needs, fighter, trader, pacifist or diplomat.
|Swordplay:||This is used during combat to determine how effective you are at melee combat using a weapon.|
|Riding:||It deals with your ability to ride animals, to spur animals in battle, to lead animals about, and general your ability to master a dumb animal in day-to-day situations.|
|Survival:||This is a general ability, dealing with your ability at various outdoor or physical pursuits.|
|Itemlore:||Your ability to assess items of their inherent worth, weight and assorted properties.|
|Scholarship:||This is a general skill dealing with an assortment of scholastic pursuits and some key abilities as your character develops need-for-knowledge and insight into the land and its inhabitants.|
Iskander - Iskander is a tall fellow, bred in the northern mountain villages but come to Silverfalls some few decades ago to aid in the city's reconstruction and military development. He has since retired from the army and taken up a post as the head tutor, responsible for all novices and scholars in the city. He wears richly embroidered robes of black and golden hue and wears an ornamental sword denoting his rank as general.
Four novice quests (known as accolades) must be completed in order to graduate from the Orphanage:p preparation for joining the school courses whose demands are far more rigorous. The accolades help you learn basic movement, and character progression through quests, lessons and exploration. The individual accolades - you will not have to perform all of them - are as follows:
|Accolade||Description of requirement|
|Pathfinder||Seek the village of North Ogg.|
|Adventurer||Retrieve an artifact from a quest to prove your worth.|
|Quick||To find and retrieve a colourful poster from the forest.|
|Leader||Lead a dwarf to the gate of Thaumacie.|
|Trustworthy||You must deliver a note to Iorwenn, the kinswoman, in Eleusis.|
|Spiritual Eye||Locate a temple of a God, and kneel in their presence.|
|Brave||Find the house of the bandits, and spit in the face of Jaskar, chief bandit.|
|Learned||You must find the ruined library of Ilmarael and study there.|
Words of Islander, Master of the Silverfalls Orphanage:
I am a patient man, tolerant by my own admission and willing to embrace all sincere youngsters to my university. I believe in book learning and diligent steady acquisition of knowledge. Patience in all things.