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How does it feel to know you were loved?
~ Koudelka: Koudelka

Koudelka Iasant is a gypsy turned witch who was born with psychic powers. She is the titular character of the game Koudelka and a pivotal-side character in the follow-up game Shadow Hearts. She is among the strongest characters in the game and one of the very few people who's power and knowledge can stand on par with Roger Bacon and Albert Simon.

Koudelka videogame

Koudelka, Add Poster

Koudelka promotional portrait

In the game Koudelka, Koudelka was journeying to an isolated monastery in Wales called Nemeton Abbey called there by the pleas of some unknown spirit. One there Koudleka quickly discovered a man named Edward Plunkett who had fallen prey to a were-wolf. Koudelka fought off the creature and revealed her powers to Edward by using them to heal his wounds before he died of them. Edward had been at the monastery because he heard the owner was some eccentric millionaire who throw parties with lose woman of all types and he had come there "to put the fear of god into him", truth was Edward was there to join in the festivities and Koudelka could tell. Regardless of why Edward was there, after his encounter with the were-wolf he wanted to find out more about the place and why a variety of undead monsters were stalking the place and so he gladly agreed to help Koudelka in her quest to find the source of the various blood-shed and spiritual unrest. Koudelka and Edward shortly found a kindly old couple by the names of Ogden and Bessy who invited them to dinner. The two introduced themselves as the care-takers of the monastery. After diner Koudelka and Edward met in the storage-room and Koudelka told Edward she had smelled some poison in the soup, the soup Edward had eaten...As Edward began to become aware of growing pains in his stomach and succumb to a paralysis Koudelka calmly stated she assumed Ogden and Bessy must have been doing that sort of thing for a while and she was just glad her knowledge of herbalism had tipped her of to the poison's smell before she had eaten it like Edward. She then turned back to Edward and told him she would cure him on condition that he not confront Ogden or Bessy and agreed to follow he lead from there on.

Koudelka decided it would be safer if Ogden and Bessy thought that she and Edward were dead and went deeper into the monastery avoiding the homicidal groundskeepers. In the lower garden Koudleka and Edward found a priest out cold in front of a giant monstrous plant. After defeating the creature the priest woke up and introduced himself as James O' Flaherty a priest of the Catholic Church. James said he had come to the monastery on a mission from God. Though James saw Koudelka and Edward as riffraff but decided there was safety in numbers with the various monsters roaming the halls of the abbey and joined them on there mission unraveling the mysterious of the Nemeton Monastery.

Over the course of the game Koudelka, Edward and James would meet Roger Bacon who told them the Émigré Manuscript was the source of the various undead creatures. Roger had penned the Émigré Manuscript years ago for the Pope making himself immortal with it's power and had gone to sleep since. James revealed he had been sent b the Vatican to retrieve the Émigré Manuscript which had been stolen and sold to the owner of the abbey, Patrick Heyworth, an old friend of James'. Koudelka eventually found that Patrick had the Émigré Manuscript stolen and bought it to resurrect his late wife Elaine Heyworth. In the process of bringing his wife back to life Patrick had killed numerous people, the "guests" Edward had heard about. When the rites were finally completed and Elaine came back it was as an undead abomination, Patrick was so depressed when he saw he had killed hundreds of people only pervert his wife's remains that he fed himself to the creature he had bought back. Koudelka realized that it was Elaine's spirit that had called her there. Elaine could not rest in peace while her body was still "alive" and asked Koudelka, Edward and James to kill her body. With Roger's help Koudelka made her way to the lower levels of the lab where Elaine's body was slumbering.

There are two possible ending in the game. If Koudelka wins against Elaine's body the three walk away and with the monastery destroyed. If Koudelka and her friends lose the final battle James offer's himself to God in exchange for freeing Elaine's soul and both die and ascend to heaven. The second one, the so-called 'bad ending', is the cannon one. Koudelka and Edward spend the night and following morning together and then part ways. Roger Bacon also survives the monastery's destruction and bids farewell to Koudelka.

Koudelka manga

Koudelka Manga

Koudelka from the manga

There is a follow-up manga to the game Koudelka of the same title. In it Koudelka reunites with Roger to confront an evil organization called the Royal Medical Society, who had gotten a hold of the original Émigré Manuscript that Roger had penned the copy Patrick was using from. The original Émigré Manuscript was a Druidic text written by a mysterious demonic creature known as "the Author". Koudelka fought to stop the Royal Medical Society from repeating Patrick's mistakes with the Émigré Manuscript and by the end the organization is destroyed and the original Émigré Manuscript is taken back to the netherworld with the Author. But perhaps more troubling Roger reveals the copy he made is still unaccounted for and he wagered one of his prized pupils was the one who stole it and likely had the copy.


Shadow Hearts

The game Shadow Hearts was a stealth sequel to Koudelka staring a whole new cast of heroes lead by Yuri Hyuga, a strange young man with the power to transform into monsters who fought to save a girl named Alice Elliot from a Warlock named "Roger Bacon". Early on Yuri was established to hear a voice in his head that occasionally reached out to him and gave him advice and was actually what helped him save Alice on two occasions. Late in the game Yuri meets a young boy with psychic powers named Halley. Halley said his mother had been kidnapped by Inquisitors from the Catholic Church because she was a witch but in truth she had let herself get captured to divert attention from Halley who also had psychic powers and couldn't defend himself as well. But Halley had heard the voice broadcasting to Yuri and recognized it as his mother's. Yuri went to help free her once they realized his mother was still alive to repay her, help Halley and find out why she had been psychically reaching out to Yuri.

Koudelka's Power
By the time Yuri and Halley had made his way into the Inquisitional hall they saw "Roger Bacon" the warlock who had tried to kidnap Alice and tried to have them killed on many occasions. "Bacon" was there to see if the Inquisitors could put the witch into a subdued state to act as pawn in his plans, however Halley's mother had used her powers to put herself in a hypnotic trance to avoid cracking under the pain of torture. When Halley arrived though "Bacon" used his magic to imprison him and was about to finish him when his mother. Broke out of her trance and unleashed her power. She accused the warlock of impersonating the real Roger Bacon and the so called Roger Bacon revealed the name of Halley's mother at last, Koudelka Iasant.

The fake Roger Bacon, for the first time in the game, seemed unnerved, but told Koudelka no-matter what she tried to do it would not be quick enough to save her son but he would release Halley if she came quietly with him. Koudelka agreed and allowed the fake Bacon to take her with him though "Bacon" had left his henchman ghost, Arcane Olga, to dispatch with Yuri and his friends while they made his escape with Koudelka. Yuri and his friend met the real Roger Bacon while tracking down Koudelka and "Bacon". Roger summarized Koudelka's past adventures for Yuri and told them the warlock impersonating him was his star apprentice turned evil named Albert Simon. Albert had taken Koudelka to use her powers for a dark ritual in the Nemeton Monastery and Roger showed Yuri and his friends the entrance to the ruins of the monastery.

As Yuri and friends made there way through the ruins they found Albert and Koudelka at the deepest point on an alter. Albert intended to use Koudelka as a sacrifice to activate the a ritual mean to summon God to destroy the planet and recreate it as Eden. Once Koudelka heard Albert's mad plan she tried to take out Albert and herself with him willing to give her life to save her son and the rest of the planet but Albert was stronger than expected and had made a pact with the demonic god Amon. Yuri and friends fought Amon but as it turned out Albert's ritual still went off since he had siphoned the energy spent in the battle to power the ritual. Before heading out to stop Albert's grand scheme Yuri and Halley touched base with Koudelka. Koudelka said the ritual had drained much of her powers. Koudelka told Yuri she had used her powers to reach out to Yuri while she was in her trance. Yuri was a harmonixer and as such was a spiritual magnet for her projections. The headache Yuri had when he heard Koudelka's voice was the result of the monster's Yuri had fused with writhing in pain at the presence of Koudelka's power. Koudelka waited in Halley's hideout in London while he and Yuri went off to defeat Albert.

Powers and Abilities

Koudelka and the Author

Koudelka from the manga Koudelka, with the Author

Koudelka is competent with any form of weapon given to her in Koudelka. Her strength is nothing special making ranged weapons like guns best suited to her since they do not rely on strength stats but as with both Edward and James, Koudelka's stats can be shaped to most anything the player likes as she levels meaning if so desired Koudelka can easily handle anything from crowbars to swords as weapons. Koudelka's real skill is her magic, as she starts off with high Intelligence and Power as well as starting offensive spells making her easily fall into the traditional role as party mage. Koudelka's spells range from basic cure spells to a spell for each basic element, the level of these spells can be leveled as Koudelka uses them. Koudelka was born a psychic with the power to see into the future, communicate with the dead, use telepathy and eventually discovered she also had access to pyrokinesis. Trained as a witch she soon learned to use outright spells which her psychic powers helped her learn quicker than most witches. Koudelka can speak with the dead and use herself as a conduit to allow the spirits to speak through her. In the manga Koudelka, Koudelka also demonstrates the power to project her consciousness into less sophisticated creatures such as rats and directly control their bodies as if they were her own. Towards the end of the manga Koudelka takes the Author into her body absorbing the full knowledge and power of the Émigré Manuscript. She temporarily becomes possessed by the Author once in her body but is able to use hypnosis to revive her mind making it the dominant of the two in her body. Once she has the power of the Author Koudelka is considered practically a force of nature on par with Roger Bacon and Albert Simon's knowledge from the Émigré Manuscript written by the Author, however Koudelka further hypnotizes herself locking away the Author's power and her knowledge of the Émigré Manuscript unless specifically invoked, as prolonged exposure would likely leave her just as insane as Roger and Albert. Once Simon drains the Author from her body Koudelka becomes significantly less powerful, it is unknown how much of her original powers were lost with the Author but Koudelka no longer can use telepathy in addition to her base powers but still has some basic psychic powers like precognition .

Personality

Koudelka tends to ignore criticisms of her culture instead using such criticisms as license to openly make fun of the main-stream culture, particularly the Bible. Where Edward and James are both religious Christians yet openly hostile towards each-other, for being either too conservative or too liberal with their faith, Koudelka views both as simple-minded in their own way, James in being slavishly loyal to the Church and Edward for being the least intellectual of the three. On the surface Koudelka is little more that a jaded cynic. Eventually it is revealed that Koudelka's nonchalant persona is in-fact a smokescreen for the angst she still carries with her from her early childhood and young adult-hood having been renounced by her mother, chased from her home-town and having to sell herself sexually for food and shelter. In both the game and manga Koudelka, the sight of other children who were presumed to be abandon deeply resonates with Koudelka. In Shadow Hearts Koudelka is shown to be a caring mother to the point of being willing to give her life.

While Koudelka tries to help Yuri and the rest of the party it appears only because they are the only ones she could contact while astral-projecting, in truth Koudelka, like Roger, has next to no love for humanity. While in the Koudelka manga, Koudelka is horrified when The Author is getting ready to destroy all life on earth, in Shadow Hearts when Albert is ready to do the same she is then only concerned with saving her son. When Halley, Yuri and the rest of the party gets ready to enter the game's final dungeon, Koudelka and Roger are less concerned with the fate of humanity than simply wishing the party well in the endeavor. It is likely the knowledge Koudelka absorbed from the Émigré Manuscript did to Koudelka what it did to Roger and jaded any sense of wonder she had for human life.

Gallery


Trivia

  • Koudelka's name is the Roma word for "treasure".
  • On the back wall of the pub in London in the game Shadow Hearts hangs Koudelka's promotional poster complete with Koudelka herself on it.
  • Based one what we know of Edward "Lord Dunsany" Plunkett, Koudelka would have had Halley at the same time Edward was getting married, making Koudelka and Halley, Edward's secret family.
 
Shadow Hearts Heroes

Koudelka
Koudelka Iasant | Edward Plunkett | James O' Flaherty | Roger Bacon
Shadow Hearts
Yuri Hyuga | Alice Elliot | Zhuzhen Li | Margarete Zelle | Keith Valentine | Halley Plunkett | Ben Hyuga | Wanderer Meiyuan
Shadow Hearts: Covenant
Karin Koenig | Blanca | Gepetto and Cornelia | Joachim Valentine | Lucia | Anastasia Romanov | Kurando Inugami | Jovis Abraham | Saki Inugami
Shadow Hearts: From the New World
Johnny Garland | Shania | Natan | Frank Goldfinger | Mao | Hildegarde Valentine | Ricardo Gomez | Lenny Curtis | Grace Garland