From the in-game instructions:
YOU HAVE BEEN CURSED!
You have until midday of Day 29 to reclaim the Soul Orb and reverse the curse or you will DIE! In the meantime, every step you take across the land will infect it and start its change back to its original form.
To move about the land you will need to answer "ordering" questions. Four answers will be presented to you - one will move you 1 square, one will move you 2, one will move you 3, one will move you 4. Choose wisely.
You will need to become strong enough to defeat the Dragon. Try honing your skills in combat.
Your hierloom weaponry and armor is lost to you. There may be people willing to sell you replacements...
You will need a Soul Shard to bypass the magical barrier. You only know of one type of creature that carries them, and they won't visit the land in its current state...
The more your curse affects the land, the more powerful will be the random monsters you encounter.