Not to be confused with Karak Azorn.
Karak Zorn, which means "Hold of the Upland Plateau" in Khazalid, is a legendary Dwarf Hold, built thousands of years ago at the extreme southern tip of the Worlds Edge Mountains. Contact has long since been lost.[1a] Whether the stronghold exists, or even if it ever existed, is uncertain, but details of its fabulous treasures and the incredible wealth of its kings are often discussed over a few pints of Dwarf ale. If tales are to be believed Karak Zorn is carved from a mountain of gold. Its massive gates of ivory are bound with red copper. Rubies and diamonds are so common that they are used as minor units of currency instead of small coins. Supposedly, the stronghold is surrounded by steaming jungles full of fearsome creatures and hostile Orcs.[1a]
Maps circulate purporting to show the location of Karak Zorn, but most are wildly different and look distinctly conjectural. Sometimes gullible adventurers pay good money for such maps, much to the derision of hardened adventurers who know better. Expeditions have never succeeded in finding the lost stronghold, but tales persist of explorers who find the place by accident but who never seem able to retrace their steps, describe their route, or provide any convincing proof to back up their wild stories. To date Karak Zorn remains a fable, but perhaps one day a haggard Dwarf explorer will solve what has remained the most perplexing mystery in all the Dwarf realms.[1a]
According to Dwarf legends the long lost stronghold of Karak Zorn lies in the far south of the Worlds Edge Mountains, deep in the heart of the Southlands.[1a] It is likely that this was the closest stronghold to the original homelands of the Dwarfs in the southern part of the Worlds Edge Mountains.[4a]
It is said that thousands of years ago, Dwarfs journeyed along the mountain range which forms the spine of this vast continent. They reached the southern end of the mountains and built a stronghold, known in legend as Karak Zorn. If this is so, then the stronghold probably would have been situated high above the surrounding jungle among the snow-capped peaks. Here the Dwarfs could flourish in a climate not unlike that of their better known homeland.[2a]
Maybe the Dwarfs of Karak Zorn encountered the Lizardmen, if so it is not recorded in any known Dwarf sagas. Almost certainly, the Dwarfs would have been interested in the gold and riches of the city of Zlatlan, and fascinated by its stone architecture. They may have even made contact as friends. The mysterious silence surrounding the fate of Karak Zorn could be due to war with the Lizardmen, since ancient records of Zlatlan refer to strife with Karak Zorn occurring in -2000 IC and little was heard of it since[2c], but it could just as easily be due to war with the Undead of Nehekhara, who sealed off the route to Karak Zorn centuries ago.[2b] Perhaps only the Lizardmen of the Southlands know for sure what became of the Dwarfs, but if this is the case, then it is likely that no one will ever know for sure the Karak's eventual fate.[3b]
According to the world map included in White Dwarf #300 (UK Edition), released in December 2004, the lost hold of Karak Zorn is located south of the Charnel Valley of Nehekhara, east of Bhagar and Ka-Sabar and west of Mount Arachnos, the Lost Plateau and Rasetra.
- 5 White Dwarf #300 (UK Edition)