Darkspawn are a race of tainted humanoids in the Dragon Age series of games. According to the main religious group in the series, the Chantry, they were created when mage-lords of the Tevinter Imperium into the Golden City of the Maker, which is basically the game's version of Heaven. Their actions corrupted themselves and the Golden City, and they returned as darkspawn. They are led by a demon-dragon known as the Archdemon, who is created when they find and taint one of the old gods that the Chantry count as false idols. Darkspawn share many traits with their untainted forms, being basically a corrupted version of the original.
Types of Darkspawn
Their are two types of darkspawn: ghouls and true darkspawn. Ghouls are created by the Darkspawn Taint, while true darkspawn are created by the Broodmothers. The different types of each are listed below.
- Hurlock - The most basic type of darkspawn, the hurlocks are corrupted humans. They're generally warriors or emissaries, the darkspawn equivalent of mages. A subfaction of hurlocks, known as the Disciples, possess greater intelligence than most darkspawn.
- Genlock - Much like the hurlocks, genlocks are corrupted as well. However, instead of being human, they are created from dwarves.
- Shrieks - Sharlocks, although most call them shrieks because of the high-pitched shriek they let out before attacking, are elven darkspawn. Unlike the hurlock and genlock, little of them resembles their uncorrupted counterparts. They are some of the most dangerous assasins in the darkspawn horde, jumping from the shadows to tear apart anyone with their long, jagged wrist-blades.
- Ogres - The ogres are the tallest and most powerful type of basic darkspawn. Created from corrupted qunari, ogres generally work solo or in two man groups, using their immense strength two tear their enemies apart.
- Broodmothers - Men are lucky when they've been captured, as they are killed and eaten. Women, however, are forced to eat their own kind, while being corrupted by the taint. This transforms them into broodmothers, massive bloated monsters designed to create more darkspawn. See the descriptions above to see what race's females create which darkspawn after being transformed.
- Archdemons - The Chantry says that when the Maker became the master of the heavens, he cast down all the old gods. Every once in a while, the darkspawn find one of these old gods, which they corrupt into the dragon-like archdemon. The archdemon then leads the entire horde to the surface in what is known as the blight. Since they were first discovered, their have been five blights, the last ending with the events of Dragon Age: Origins.
- Children - Darkspawn created by a strangly intelligent broodmother known as The Mother. As they eat, they grow, changing from large worm-like creatures to even larger worm-like creatures with massive claws and legs.
- The Architect - A powerful darkspawn commander who has gained his freedom from the old gods and wishes to free the rest of the darkspawn from their eternal servitude as well. Though intelligent, he has little understanding of the other major races. Because of his appearance, he is most likely a hurlock. However, he seems more human than darkspawn.
- Tainted Animals - Creatures that have been corrupted by the Taint. Types include the blight wolf, corrupted spider and bereskarn (corrupted bear). These creatures are technically ghouls, as they are created during a blight, not by a broodmother.