Ereshkigal is the 3rd ranked Dragon Lord. True to her nickname "The Queen of Ice", she is a mage whose powers and personality are represented by the element of frost.
The signs of her inbound return act as the primary theme throughout Aion 5.0-5.3. She is expected to take on a much more active role herself starting 5.5 onwards.
A strategist and level-headed thinker, Ereshkigal is known not only for being the best tactician among the Balaur but also for being a mage who possesses power on par with Fregion. Among the Balaur, whose nature is blood and rage, she is an anomaly: where most are driven by their insatiable lust for battle, she instead seeks knowledge and answers; where they would destroy, she chooses to enslave. Her personality and element are in direct contrast with Meslamtaeda, whose violent nature is often perceived to be the very embodiment of everything the Balaur stand for.
Although Ereshkigal's reputation is one of cold-hearted punishment, she is in fact rational and prefers to further her desire for power through strict adherence to her code of honor. She has the mark of Aion on her forehead. According to the The Story of Ereshkigal - The Chosen Drakan she is a special existence among the Dragon Lords.
In the centuries following the Cataclysm, Ereshkigal wandered the coldest and darkest reaches of Atreia's surface. While the other Dragon Lords unleashed their fury on the planet's surface and its remaining denizens, Ereshkigal instead looked for answers. After decades of searching she finally discovered what she had sought after for so long: a small fragment of the Tower of Eternity from which Aion's power still emanated, frozen in a glacier at the edge of the planet's crust. Ereshkigal poured her malice and cruelty into the fragment, and over the course of centuries shaped it into an object of sinister power. When the Abyss was discovered and the Elyos and Asmodians began to emerge from the two shattered halves of the world, Ereshkigal knew that she would one day have the solution to the war.
At some point Ereshkigal appeared before Tiamat after centuries of exile. While the latter expected that the elder Dragon Lord had come to claim her head, Ereshkigal instead handed Tiamat a scepter -- the Scepter of Scales. Embedded in the scepter was a jewel that seemed to radiate darkness. Tiamat raised the scepter and at once hundreds of Draken soldiers ascended and became Balaur. Tiamat’s eyes widened and turned to Ereshkigal, but the elder Dragon Lord was gone.
Other records involving Ereshkigal are spread thin. It is known that she froze the city of Kungalfberg (Beluslan) in the past, and that the permafrost could not be melted despite countless attempts from Daevas of Flame over the centuries.
Return of the Queen Edit
Ereshkigal returns into the picture with the Upheaval patch (Aion 4.8). As the lands of Cygnea and Enshar rise from the bottom of the Abyss Ocean, so do stories about past legends known only to the Tehji tribe native to Enshar. Through these stories, as well as clues that the player(s) collect during their explorations of these lands and throughout the ensuing showdowns with Dragon Lord Beritra, both factions are able to put the pieces together and uncover a chilling truth.
As it turns out, a cataclysmic battle took place in the past between an entity known as the "power of frost" and an entity known as the "power of fire". The battle ended with the former's defeat, and thus the power of frost was sealed away underneath the land both powers had fought above. A junior Dragon Lord was assigned as her warden and, knowing the price of failure, took a number of precautions to keep her prisoner hidden: she created a number of aetheric warding stones to conceal the prison itself and shattered these across the land, simultaneously assigning several legions of her undead servants to guarding each individual warding stone.
Yet, still not at ease, the warden ultimately decided on one additional precaution. She created three artifacts, the Sealing Stones, and used these to submerge the entire continent on which the prison was located underwater, as well as keep it in this state. The Sealing Stones were hidden across the warden's territory, later revealed to have been the lands known as Sarpan, Tiamaranta and Katalam/Danaria. The warden then relocated her headquarters to Tiamaranta, and maintained firm control over much of Balaurea until the Elyos and Asmodians eventually venture to the 'outer shell' of the world and managed to slay her in her own stronghold.
After the warden's death an elder Dragon Lord catches wind of her secret duty, and sets out to locate the power of frost and offer it a tempting deal: freedom in exchange for power. At this point the Daevas realize that the identity of "power of frost" is none other than that of 3rd Dragon Lord Ereshkigal and, realizing that everything would be over if they were to face two Dragon Lords at once, launch a full-scale assault on the now discovered prison where the power of frost lies entombed. While the Daevas succeed in preventing Ereshkigal's immediate resurrection, they are unaware that they were unable to to stop the seal binding her from becoming significantly weakened -- to the point where Ereshkigal slowly begins to wake from her centuries long slumber...
Aion 4.9 Edit
Some time after the events of 4.8 a giant roar is heard which reverberates across all of Atreia. Upon venturing into the Abyss both races discover that the area has changed drastically: the Core of Reshanta has been frozen over, and the remainder of the Abyss has been buried under a thick layer of permafrost. Worse yet, they find that Ereshkigal's legions have destroyed the fortresses of Roah and Asteria, and have taken over the three fortresses surrounding the Core. These events cause leaders of both factions to remark that they have never seen this kind of strategical thinking from the Balaur before.
Aion 5.0 Edit
By the time of 5.0 the war against Ereshkigal's forces in the Abyss has reached a stalemate, and when the weakening of the aetheric field surrounding the Tower of Eternity reveals two new lands (Iluma and Norsvold) both factions shift their attention to the land of their origin and its potential secrets. Unbeknownst to both factions however, the aetheric field has also dithered in other places in Atreia, leaving Elysea and Asmodae vulnerable to threats from outside. Seizing the opportunity, Ereshkigal orders two of her Dredgion fleets to launch a surprise attack on both capitals (Aion 5.3). As hordes of Balaur are suddenly seen rampaging around in the burning streets of Sanctum and Pandaemonium, both factions immediately recall their forces from the Abyss to defend their homeland, giving Ereshkigal's forces in the Abyss the time needed to finalize their preparations...
- NCSoft has released a number of official comics which detail the events that took place between Aion 4.9 and Aion 5.3 from Ereshkigal's perspective. [Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3 (End)]
- The 4.8 campaign identified Ereshkigal's gender as female for the first time. Several in-game books however continue to refer to 'her' as 'him' (the game originally listed 'her' gender as male).
- A female voice can be heard talking to the player during one of the Enshar campaign cutscenes (Asmodians). Digging through the game data files reveals that these voice files have "ereshkigal" in their filenames. It is also suggested that it is her voice we are hearing when Ahserion calls out and a female voice replies.
- It is strongly suggested that Ereshkigal has unlocked the secret behind Ascension, and is (partially) responsible for the Balaur's transformation from the Drakan into their present state. Besides the Scepter of Scales mentioned above, both Ahserion and Orissan can be seen calling upon her and her powers in the game for their (manual) ascension. This process does not seem to have been perfected yet, though, as Ahserion's ascension took a very large amount of time and Orissan went back and forth between immortality and mortality -- in both cases the Daevas were able to defeat them because of such a "flaw".
- The Shulacks found in the Aturam Sky Fortress carry Ereshkigal's seal on them, on which one of the NPCs elaborates by saying that Ereshkigal prefers enslaving sapiens and having them work towards her ambitions over destroying them. In doing so she is the only Dragon Lord to still resemble the original Drakan, whose goal was to "rule" instead of the present-day Balaur who apparently only seek to destroy.
- Her human appearance was first released in the Aion 5.5 (Korean) trailer.
- Ereshkigal's dragon form makes a first appearance in the trailer for 5.8.