During the city's struggle with the Wailing Death in the Year of Wild Magic, 1372 DR, the Blacklake District was barred to the public to stop the plague from entering. The few who were allowed access found the District's population in turmoil from food scarcity. Much of the conflict centered on the wizard Meldanen, who had hoarded great amounts of food in his warehouse, and was known for his cruel magical experiments. The noble Formosa Laitannen loudly opposed Meldanen and his acts, and actively tried to hire someone to kill the mage.
With the murders caused by the warlock Ammon Jerro in the Year of Lightning Storms, 1374 DR, the district was cut off once more pending investigation. After entering the district, the Kalach-Cha managed to find the wizard Aldanon, who would later prove invaluable to the quest for the Silver Sword of Gith.
When Mount Hotenow erupted in the Year of Knowledge Unearthed, 1451 DR, bringing about the destruction of most of Neverwinter, the northwestern district was left mostly untouched by the pyroclastic flow, although the Blacklake became a pit of debris, garbage, and ash from the eruption. In the rebuilt city, the Blacklake District lay in the northwestern part of Neverwinter, while the northeastern became the River District.
The Nashers moved in to take over the district and use it as their base of operations. The Nashers stole from the poor to finance their rebellion against Neverember, leading poor citizens to hire adventurers to deal with them for the sake of stability. They openly defied Lord Neverember's dictates and attacked those who did not swear loyalty, driving off the rest. For those who refused to leave, they burned down their houses or else barricaded them inside. The Ashmadai were trying to infiltrate the gang. Meanwhile, the Neverwinter Guard made a ramshackle defense of certain areas and gates out. An undercover Harper spy operated amongst the Blacklake gangs, communicating via coded messages stashed in secret places with handlers like Elminster and they sought to capture coded messages from the Dead Rats to decrypt.
Later that year, to celebrate Neverwinter's successes, Lord Neverember declared the Protector's Jubilee. The event drew merchants from up and down the Sword Coast but some came through Blacklake District and needed escorting by adventurers.
The buildings remained largely intact in the wake of the various disasters that laid the city low. This was thanks to the nobles who'd previously inhabited the District, as they had built buildings and other structures using quality materials and sound architectural techniques, and protected them with magic.
However, most buildings were later repurposed into makeshift barracks to defend Neverwintan survivors against the dangers that plagued the city after its destruction, while others just fell into disrepair over time, or were vandalized by vagrants, making the district look significantly different from what it used to.
On the southeast shore of Blacklake lay two particularly troubled areas, the Tatters and Riverside, which were linked by a short bridge. Both largely lay in ruins. Some "notable" locations in the Tatters were, or had been, Brimbleton Place, Chadwick Stoop, and Thatcher Road, but in ruins these were little different from anywhere else.
The Blacklake at the center was filled with ash and volcanic debris, filth, and trash dumped by the locals, as well as several destroyed ships. It came to resemble a vast midden more than a lake, overflowing with a dense black sludge. It even developed magical properties and gave rise to sludge-covered zombies in the streets, suggesting it was more than mere pollution, and alchemists like Hazel studied the phenomenon. A drow self-proclaimed Chosen of Ghaunadaur later led an attack of sludge zombies on Blacklake District in 1479 DR, suggesting that he or his god had transformed the sludge.
Even though several well-detailed and annotated maps of the Blacklake District existed, their mass production was banned by Lord Nasher to protect the district and the city from any illicit and spy activity. Very few maps were in existence, with one of them found in Gillian's Hill's curio store - Torleth's Treasures in 1372 DR.
In the mid-to-late 14th century DR, the Blacklake District was inhabited by Neverwinter's nobles, before the destruction of the city in the Mount Hotenow in 1451 DR. Afterward, a few survivors and refugees that decided to remain in the city relocated themselves to the District.
These survivors were generally highly nationalist and proud of the Alagondar lineage, and violently resisted Dagult Neverember's rule. The Nashers claimed the area for themselves, daring Neverember's soldiers and mercenaries to try to take it from them by force. The Nashers and Dead Rats gang largely prowled the Tatters, with the Dead Rats based in the sewers of Blacklake District.
Likewise, the Ashmadai under Mordai Vell had gained a foothold in the Blacklake District, even infiltrating the ranks of both the nationalist refugees and Neverember's troops stationed in the district.
In addition, circa 1479 DR, someone regularly graffitied a wall of a dilapidated building in the south with Iokharic writing (the language unrecognized) and a symbol. Locals believed the images were evil and worried of a devil-worshiping cult in the area. They were mistaken—it was a dragon-worshiping cult.
- Inns & Taverns
- The Beached Leviathan, a moored ship repurposed as a tavern for pirates and sailors.
- The Driftwood Tavern, a cozy little tavern run by Madame Rosene.[note 2]
- The House of a Thousand Faces, a favored inn that served as the headquarters for the Neverwintan branch of the Harpers.
- Geographical Features
- Castle Never
- Lakeside, a stretch of beachside property that became a cesspool of sludge that emerged from the lake itself.
- Starshine Academy
- The Tatters, a particularly rough neighborhood that was taken over for a time by the Nashers.
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- The name "Bluelake District" is used on the 5th-edition map of Neverwinter in the Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide, page 52, set circa 1489 DR. However, other products, such as the Neverwinter MMO, which are up to date with the current D&D storyline but set circa 1479 DR, still use the name "Blacklake District". It's unclear if the name Bluelake is in error, a retcon, or represents a still-unexplained change to the area, such as a rejuvenation.
- While the tavern appears in the Protector's Enclave zone in the Neverwinter MMO, the Neverwinter Campaign Setting locates in the Blacklake District.
- Blacklake article at the NWNWiki, a wiki for the Neverwinter Nights games.
- Blacklake article at the NWN2Wiki, a wiki for the Neverwinter Nights 2 games.
- Blacklake District article at the Neverwinter Wiki, a wiki for the Dungeons and Dragons: Neverwinter MMORPG.
- Matt Sernett, Erik Scott de Bie, Ari Marmell (August 2011). Neverwinter Campaign Setting. Edited by Tanis O'Connor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 153. ISBN 0-7869-5814-6.
- Kim Mohan ed. (2015). Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 52. ISBN 978-0786965809.
- Cryptic Studios (June 2013). Neverwinter. Perfect World Entertainment.
- Matt Sernett, Erik Scott de Bie, Ari Marmell (August 2011). Neverwinter Campaign Setting. Edited by Tanis O'Connor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 139. ISBN 0-7869-5814-6.
- BioWare (June 2002). Designed by Brent Knowles, James Ohlen. Neverwinter Nights. Atari.
- Obsidian Entertainment (October 2006). Designed by Ferret Baudoin, J.E. Sawyer. Neverwinter Nights 2. Atari.
- Ossian Studios (June 2018). Neverwinter Nights: Darkness over Daggerford. Beamdog.
- Matt Sernett, Erik Scott de Bie, Ari Marmell (August 2011). Neverwinter Campaign Setting. Edited by Tanis O'Connor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 154. ISBN 0-7869-5814-6.
- Cryptic Studios (June 2013). Neverwinter. Perfect World Entertainment.
- Matt Sernett, Erik Scott de Bie, Ari Marmell (August 2011). Neverwinter Campaign Setting. Edited by Tanis O'Connor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 156. ISBN 0-7869-5814-6.