Located in the South Eastern corner of Arindear Province, Arindear, Castle Valor is strategically located on a slight hill, with it's gate facing the East Arindear River, which is only a few kilometers away. The main halls were closer to the Vindavin Mountains on the Conquerous-Arindear border. The Vindavin Woods surround it, making it both harder to siege but also easier to sneak up on. It's isolated position made it vulnerable, though, because it could easily be cut off from friendly supply lines such as in the Ignis War and War of the Loti.
Castle Valor isn't the newest castle in Northern Enniare, but it's certainly not the oldest. The fortress has stood for over four centuries, and has been a seat of power for a variety of monarchs, barons, religions, and a knightly orders.
Founding (20 - 25 ABB)
Queen Wendolla, daughter of King Wendell the Just, ordered it's creation 20 years after the Battle of Bardük, originally with the intent to have a fortress closer to the Magik nations in case another Magik War erupted.
The fortress took five years to complete, despite the fact that it was generally smaller than other contemporary fortresses. The reason was its location. While originally Queen Wendolla wanted to quarry stones from the nearby Astilik Mountains, but the remoteness of the site combined with dangerous creatures in the mountains made it difficult to find laborers who would work there. Thus, stone had to be quarried out of the Arindear Mountains and transported down the East Arindear River to get to the build site.
Sierdan Stronghold (25 - 372 ABB)
The Castle later became a semi-important military stronghold due to it's proximity with new trading cities such as Divan and Turko, though after Castle Crawford was created Castle Valor became a backwater castle. It wasn't until Sierda was dissolved into smaller countries and Arindear was created that Castle Valor became important once again.
Crusading Castle (372 ABB)
By the time of Sierda's dissolution, the castle was no longer a mainstay of House wen Erskin, the descendants of King Wendell the Just. Now it belonged mainly to Baron Luke Vindavin. Due to its position near the dwarven enemies of Sierda, Castle Valor proved a useful base of operations during the crusaders. While initially Luke used it as a staging ground for his soldiers during the crusades, when he returned from his short campaign, he found the North debating independence, which would have included his House's territory in the south.
The War for the Crown of Arindear (372 - 374 ABB)
When the Council of Barons and Baronesses discussed how Arindear would be formed, Arindear City was selected as the capitol, but the military stronghold as well as who would lead, was less clear. The resulting Crown War was won by the returning crusader Luke Vindavin, as he controlled the majority of the south while hate north was split. In addition to economic and agricultural pressures Luke pressed, his military was based out of Castle Valor. Due to it's remote location, the northern houses never were able to besiege the castle. After being crowned as High Baron of Arindear, Luke maintained military command at Castle Valor.
Independent Arindear (374 - Present ABB)
During the history of Arindear as anew Independent nation, Castle Valor was a useful military stronghold for its hard to reach location and distance from the capitol. Because of that, both could not be sacked at once, or at least not easily. Unfortunately this decentralization and the difficult terrain around Castle Valor was a double edged sword. During both the Battle for Castle Valor and the Battle of Castle Valor, enemies of the crown used the isolation of the fortress to their advantage.
Rule of Charles Vindavin (383 - Present ABB)
When Luke's son, Charles Vindavin, took the throne after Luke died tragically in a boating accident, he used the symbolic power of Castle Valor greatly. For the young High Baron, the castle served as a military and administrative center. Charles founded the Knights of Valor in 387 ABB as a group of knights dedicated to defending Arindear, hearkening back to the days of his father's crusaders. The KoV was based out of Castle Valor until the Ignis War.
The Ignis War (392 ABB)
During hate war for Tela, Ignis took over Castle Valor. His takeover corrupted the surrounding woods and Castle, causing the area to be permanently stained with evil. While Ignis and his fiendish friends were driven out in the Battle for Castle Valor, the combined residual evil and presence of Terrus in the East Arindear River forced the Knights of Arindear to abandon the castle. Charles relocated his knights to Castle Crawford, while Darastryx Sythr, Captain of the Dragon Riders, moved his forces to Divan.
The Enniare Witch Trials (393 - 397 ABB)
During the decade following the Ignis War, one of the Order of Light's primary objectives was on reclaiming and purging the now corrupted Vindavin Woods and Castle Valor. While the majority of their small crusades into the area were unsuccessful, their attempts at reconquering the region came in conflict with attempts by the High Baron reclaiming his old stronghold. This resulted in the Battle of Castle Valor, kick-starting the War of Loti.
The War of Loti (399 - 405 ABB)
The Battle of Castle Valor was the prime example of how Castle Valor's location was detrimental. Cut off from supply lines and surrounded by the largest OoL forces that had ever descended upon the haunted woods, Sir Bob Brawler of the KoV was forced to retreat, losing the siege despite KoV and Lunar Council bravery. The Castle was once again abandoned, though Arindian and Werewolf cooperation resulted in some progress towards reclamation.
Behind the Scenes
Castle Valor was first invented by Wendolla on the 25th of July, 2016 with a LEGO general gallery post "KoV Castle, Valor Castle." The post included a simple MOC of the castle. In it, the build had four walls with balcony-towers on the corners by the gatehouse, which was topped by a much larger tower. The Eastern wall, opposite the gatehouse, had a large hall built into it with an arched doorway and a central, squat tower. While the build sat on a 2x2 square of 32x32 green baseplates, the castle really only took up one of those baseplates with a grove of trees sitting in front of the gatehouse on a second baseplate.
Wendolla built a second, much larger MOC of the castle on the total 64x64 square, with varied terrain that represented the hill the castle sat upon. This build had a much larger gatehouse with a proper portcullis, rather than a simple doorway. It contained a large building atop the walls to the SE of the gatehouse. Meanwhile, a second building stood in the north east corner of the build. It had more spare tree cover outside the castle walls, with the trees being larger and more detailed. A waterway was built across from the gatehouse with a pathway leading from the shore to the castle, implying the east Arindear River was much closer to Castle Valor. Unfortunately, the castle was partially destroyed by one of Wendolla's younger brothers during an accident. She didn't salvage the build, and instead took it apart. As far as she is aware, no pictures exist of the build - though there might be a few on some camera or hard drive.