The Dark One was a mysterious mage appearing in SpellForce: The Order of Dawn. He was capable of using the archfire and was revealed to be one of the last members of the Circle. Because of sinister plans, he was the main antagonist during the Battle of Fiara.
During the final days of the Circle, the Dark One was attempting to conduct the ritual left behind by the Fial Darg to obtain divine power. On the day of the Convocation he was approached by an old man, Rohen Tahir. He was wielding an mysterious book that were supposed to contain the true secrets of the ritual used. Old man Rohen warned the Dark One that the Convocation was a lie and that it would destroy them all.Arrogantly, the Dark One dismissed Rohen's warnings as foolish beliefs and attacked him with his archfire magic. While the two mages were fighting in the tower, their armies clashed outside and many died in the senseless fightings.
|“||Have you come to witness the day of my ultimate triumph, poor old man? [...] You should not have come! Do you really think big about your whimpering||”|
— The Dark One ridiculing Rohen
It was stopped though, when the ritual successfully wakened the Primal Elements. The unleashed power tore the continents apart and the two Circle mages fell down into a fiery pit. Rohen Tahir was able to reobtain the fallen tome and the two mages ran for their lives. They both were the only known Circle mages known to have survived the Primal Elements' raging.
After the Convocation
A few years after Eo had undergone a drastic change. With the continents having been split into island separated by the Sea of Elements, Rohen Tahir felt shame and founded the Order of Dawn to restore stability. He also created the portal network by which the islands were connected. While the old man was trying to cure the wounds, the Convocation had left, the Dark One had entirely different plans.
He was believing that the Convocation itself was not faulty. He believed that the magic powers used were simply insufficient. When he remembered the old man's book, he believed that the secrets contained within, would help him to succeed where he had failed previously. He decided that he had to get rid of Rohen Tahir to be able to conduct his plans undisturbed.
And thus the Dark One plotted a complex plan. He supported the Black Fist, a minor band of mercenaries led by the brutal Brannigan, who rose to become a massive threat within the region. At the same time, he even dared to steal from Hokan Ashir's leftbehinds: He created the Blades again and with the Soulforger's help, a massive army was formed.
When Rohen Tahir used a rune to summon a particular rune warrior, the Dark One was quick-witted enough, to use that for his own goods. By handing a magically sealed casket to a traitorous messenger, he was supposed to plot Rohen's demise. However, he expected the future Phoenix Bearer to emerge victorious from the battle with the Messenger. With the casket in her possession, she believed that it was containing the hidden plans of the Dark One's invasion.The rune warrior went after Rohen Tahir since only a Circle mage's magic was able to open the lock on the Magically Sealed Casket. She found Rohen at the Frost Marshes but when she handed over the casket, the Dark One's trap stroke. Instead of secret plans, the casket had been containing a powerful freezing spell. Not even the old man was able to resist and was rendered defenseless. The Dark One appeared and killed Rohen Tahir with a single spell.
|“||So we meet again, old man! Did you really think that you could stop me? Now you will pay the price for your foolish efforts. Your journey ends here... for you there is no future||”|
Massacre at the Godmark
With the old man gone, the Dark One continued with his plans. However, he had underestimated the Phoenix Bearer, which had been tasked by Rohen Tahir with an important task only moments before his death. With the Phoenix Stone in her possession, the Phoenix Bearer hoped to have chances of fighting against the Dark One. The Order of Dawn was led by Sartarius and many other knights against the Blades of the Frost Marshes and the Southern Godmark, but they were utterly decimated and Sartarius was even captured.
When the Phoenix Bearer attempted to rescue the leader of the Order of Dawn, the Dark One once more had his trap placed. After having touched the chains that were holding Sartarius, a freezing spell was used once more. The Dark One ridiculed the rune warrior's attempts. Instead of being of use for the rune warrior, the Dark One even took the Phoenix Stone and the Book of the Convocation, which had been in the rune warrior's possession ever since Rohen's death. With the Phoenix Stone the Dark One now had a powerful archfire source and the book would soon tell him all secrets of the Convocation. He left the Phoenix Bearer to die and continued to execute his plans.
Showdown at Sharrowdale
After the Phoenix Bearer had been saved by Urias and Craig Un'Shallach, she persisted and pushed through the Nightwhisper Dale and the lands of Urgath until she faced the Dark One's final troops on the island of Sharrowdale. She fought back the many servants summoned by the rogue Circle mage and even was able to destroy the Soulforger. But when she apprehended the Dark One a stunning revelation took place: The Dark One was revealed to be Rohen at a much younger age.With the Phoenix Stone inserted in young Rohen's Time Portal, he traveled back in the time before the Convocation had taken place. There he was preparing for conducting the ritual again in a couple of years. However, when reading the Book of the Convocation, that he had obtained, he came to realize that his older self had been right all the time. Over the course of time, he came to realize his wrongdoings and when the dawn of the Convocation had finally come close, he approached his younger self to stop him. And this is where the Circle between old and young Rohen began anew.
The Dark One's plans
Ever since the failed ritual of the Convocation, the Dark One had been trying to understand, why it had failed. He came to the conclusion that it must have been a lack of magic power. He was believing that if he were to be able to get back in time to attempt it once more, he would be able to succeed.
|“||It is his goal to open a portal back into the valley. He believes that he can change the course of history and acquire the power of the Convocation. But he is mistaken! He cannot control that power. Nobody can!||”|
Time travels were extremely difficult to perform though and only with a massive amount of magic, such a spell could be cast. According to old man Rohen, the Dark One's first attempt was to subdue Aonir's Godstones. They were powerful enough to ward of even the Primal Elements, so their magic should've been more than sufficient. However, they proved to be impervious to the Dark One's attempts and this is why he kept looking for alternatives.
|“||This... circle mage wants to bring the godstones under his control. Should he succeed all life as we know will be snuffed out in only a moment's time.||”|
On his journeys the Dark One then heard of a divine object, the Pledge of the Gods, that supposedly had been given to an elven woman by Elen herself. He attempted to obtain said object and thus went to Lea Muir's family to wed her. Lea Muir had been in love with Amra already and had given away the ring as a sign of her love to the mercenary.
When he learned of this, the Dark One killed Lea Muir and everyone of her family besides Shan Muir. He headed after Amra and found him at the Howling Mounds where he used archfire magic to annihilate the mercenary. The Pledge of the Gods turned out to be a simple copper ring though without divine powers and the Dark one threw it away after having learned this.
|“||It was just a simple pewter ring. Sometimes people's faith is stronger than any magic. The people simply wanted to believe that Lea was blessed [...] And the pledge of the gods was nothing more than a worthless piece of metal. And a mirror for the greed and stupidity of the people! For the gods give not pledges to mere mortals!||”|
When the Phoenix Bearer was captured by the Dark One in the Southern Godmark, the Dark One was finally able to obtain a truly remarkable magic artefact: The Phoenix Stone. Said relic was holding enough power to help him with his plans. With its power he was finally able to create the Time Portal. Possibly, this old man Rohen told the rune warrior to get the stone in the first place only to smoothly conduct his own cycle by sending his younger self in the first place.
Please note that only quests with direct involvement of the Dark One are listed below.
Fight between Rohen and the Dark One during the Convocation
Although being a Circle mage strong enough to kill another mage instant and wielding the archfire power the Dark One still keeps a rusty orcish dagger as a weapon which seems vastly inappropriate. It is not mentioned if the dagger has a lore-wise connection but upon reviewing the game stats the dagger was definitely identified as 'Rusty Orcish Dagger'.