Axgard is marked by three distinct mountain ranges, separated by rocky flatland where hardy golden grasses grow in the warm season. There are few trees, and from the surface, there is little evidence that anyone lives there, save the mountain lions, goats, and raptors that make their homes on the barren slopes. But in some places, the sounds of industry can be heard ringing through the air, and on closer inspection, explorers might see a flash of metal, a glimpse of one of eight golden doors built into the mountainsides.
The fabled dwarven City of Eight Doors can be accessed only through these golden doors, and the doors are opened to the surface only in cases of a dire emergency. No invaders from this realm or any other have ever breached the city; it is widely considered impregnable. Would-be raiders would have to cross miles of rugged mountains to even reach one of the entrances, and the doors are heavily warded against both magical and physical damage.
Vast, gilded halls stretch for miles under the mountains and flatlands: feast-halls with long tables, immense rooms filled with exquisitely crafted weapons, and huge auditoriums where thousands of dwarves gather to hear the stories of their people. The largest of these auditoriums is Bloodhammer Hall, named in honor of the city's founder, Vilnus Bloodhammer. Its domed ceiling is covered in gold, and the walls are painted with scenes from the sagas of every realm, including realms that were destroyed long ago and otherwise forgotten. The dwarves' largest saga-telling competition is held here: skalds recite epic tales for vast audiences of Axgard's most influential citizens, competing to see who tells the best story, or who can tell the longest tale without flagging. The famed Gunnar the Breathless once declaimed for three days and three nights without pausing to take a breath, and his record is unrivaled.
The sculpted pillars and walls of the dwarven halls are inlaid with gold that gleams with a soft, warm glow. Drawn from an apparently endless supply of bubbling liquid gold found in the Goldmaw Chasm, far below the city, this gold provides all the light the dwarves need to go about their business in the city. Because gold is so readily available to them, the dwarves do not count it as valuable (their currency is made from iron, which is valued for its utility, not its rarity), but they do find it aesthetically pleasing.
The Goldeater and The Final Battle
An unfinished saga foretells the near destruction of the City of Eight Doors by the Goldeater, a Cosmos Giant drawn to Axgard by the treasures of the Goldmaw Chasm. Every dwarf warrior carries the prophecy of that final battle in mind throughout their battle training, and it drives them to be the best fighters they can be. Most dwarves imagine that they might be the ones to strike the deathblow against the Goldeater and save the city so their name will be written into the final chapter of the saga.
- The City of Eight Doors.
- Bloodhammer Hall.
- The Goldmaw Chasm.
- Associated cards:
- Referred to:
- Axgard is based on Niðavellir or Svartalfheim, the homes of the dwarfs/dwarves in Norse mythology, the former of which is where stand golden halls containing dvergr (dwarves) and some worthy souls that do not end up in Asgard, whilst the latter of which is home to both dvergr and dökkálfar (dark elves) which are of a more malign nature.
- It may also take inspiration from Asgard, as Axgard's name appears to be a pun on Asgard.
- The name Axgard may be a junction of the word ax ("axe") and garðr ("enclosure" of the old Nordic).