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Ask a Lore Nerd: The Evil-o-Meter


Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, the column that answers your questions about the story and lore of the Warcraft universe. Click the Comments link below, ask your question, and blogger/columnist Alex Ziebart will answer you in a future installment!

Travis asks...

What can you tell me about the other portals around Outlands (the only one that springs to mind right now is the one in Zangarmarsh)? They look just like the one you get to Outlands through, but are just standing there doing nothing.

Answer: Those portals were once used by the Burning Legion and their lackies to travel between Outland and various other worlds. Those portals were also used to send Legion reinforcements to Outland. Before Illidan and his posse usurped Magtheridon, they went around shutting down these portals to prevent Magtheridon from being reinforced. Further, they've been kept closed so Kil'jaeden can't come stomping back into Outland to punish Illidan for not being able to kill the Lich King.


skoll asks...

Can you tell me, why did the night elves join the Alliance, in WCIII we saw the night elves fought against both the orcs and human, and untill the last campaign they united with the orcs and humans to fight the burning legion, Why alliance not horde?

Answer: For one, the Orcs are not as happy-shiny as they like to think they are. I mostly refer to the Warsong Clan, who continue to chop down and destroy one of the last bastions of Night Elven culture and society: Ashenvale. The Warsong Clan isn't even using the lumber they cut down in Ashenvale. They're essentially just clearcutting the area, which is an absolutely massive taboo for the Night Elves. For two, Undead are also an abomination to the Night Elves. They're a big F U to Night Elven culture and beliefs, what with trying to destroy all living things, and being unnatural creatures themselves.

Despite the pretty large differences between the Night Elves and other Alliance races, the Alliance generally doesn't destroy nature just for the sake of destroying nature. The gnomes might, but the Dwarves and Humans usually just take what they need and leave it at that. The Dwarves also have a very natural side, with being attuned to the earth and having a plethora of hunters in their ranks. The Alliance not being unnatural abominations really helps their case, too.

When you need to pick an ally, you usually pick the one that pisses you off the least.

Sephie asks the following...

Q: Is there any chance Naga could become a playable or even allyable race? (I guess with Murlocs becoming allyable anything is possible.) Mostly I just want to know more about the Naga and why they are so cranky? Would they be horde or alliance?

A: I guess technically it's possible for there to be friendly, playable Naga, though it would not make sense in the current known storyline. Chris Metzen has made it pretty clear that he's wiling to make changes to the story if it improves things, so one day that could happen.

However, the current story pretty much axes a large faction of friendly Naga. The Naga are Highborne mutated by Neptulon and the Old Gods, and they serve under Queen Azshara. Night Elves basically see them as the same as demons, and pretty much everyone they serve is pretty high on the Evil-o-meter. Azshara caused the Sundering that split the world in two, and the Old Gods are jerks in every sense of the word.

The Alliance would likely never accept Naga unless there was a massive change to their backstory. The Night Elves hate them with extreme prejudice. The Horde might take them, but that's also pretty unlikely. Kael'thas was willing to work with Lady Vashj out of necessity, but I doubt all of the Blood Elves in Silvermoon would be as open to the idea.

Q: Up in Hinterlands there is a bunch of elves that are alliance friendly. Did they used to have the nelf model and now have the belf model? Are they high elves? Why are they friendly to Alliance?

A: They used to use the old, hideous High Elf models. Ugly. Ugly ugly ugly. You're right that they're High Elves, and they're friendly to the Alliance because the High Elves have almost always been friendly to the Alliance. Not all High Elves became Blood Elves, and only the Blood Elves have beef with the Alliance. The Blood Elves largely blame the Alliance for the destruction of Quel'Thalas, their homeland, but the High Elves have remained loyal.

Ruva asks...

Why is there an instance portal deep within Dark Whisper Gorge?

Answer: That was likely originally intended to be the entrance to Mount Hyjal, had it not become a Caverns of Time instance instead. It's possible we'll still get a current day Hyjal instance in the future, but for now it's blocked off.

Reese asks...

Who is technically the biggest and most important villain in all of Warcraft history (like, the reason for all the chaos), and what are Illidan's and Arthas' relationship to him? Also, what is the deal with the Lich King, where did he come from, what does he have to do with the story, who was the original, and how did Arthas become him?

A: Sargeras is the biggest baddy that we know by name, but even his origins point at something more evil, something a notch higher on the Evil-o-Meter. To make it easy on both you and me, we'll stick with him to answer this question.

Sargeras is a former champion of the Titans, and he snapped and lost it after dealing with the evil-as-crap Old Gods for so long. He's the founder of the Burning Legion more or less, and is on a mission to purge all of existence. He met Illidan on his first visit to Azeroth, when Queen Azshara summoned him through the Well of Eternity. He gouged Illidan's eyes out during Illibeans' first steps down the road to being a power-hungry egomaniac, and his 'rise' to Demon Hunter status.

The Lich King was once an Orc Shaman named Ner'zhul. The Legion took Ner'zhul and twisted him into the Lich King, to use him as a tool to weaken Azeroth for an invasion. He did not like being used as a tool by the Legion, so he called out to Arthas. You see, The Lich King didn't have a physical form of his own. He was a spirit tied to a suit of armor. Arthas would be his vessel, and through Arthas he would tell the Legion to GTFO and become a supervillain on his own.

Syme asks...

Where is Snowsong?

Answer: I assume you refer to Thrall's wolf, but I may be wrong there. If so, she's probably the wolf that Thrall rides in Nagrand, but there is no specific mention of her in WoW.

That's about all the time we have this week, ladies and gents. If I didn't get to your question this week, never fear! Ask a Lore Nerd will be back next week Sunday, answering as many of your questions as possible. Remember, don't be afraid to ask us your questions, no matter how large or small. Post them in the Comments field below, and I'll get to them as soon as I can. Thanks for reading and I'll see you next week!
Ask a Lore Nerd is here to answer all of your questions about the lore and story of the Warcraft universe. From the backgrounds of raid bosses to the lifespan of your favorite race, everything is fair game. If you want more in-depth answers to some of your questions, you may find what you're looking for in Know Your Lore or the WoW Insider Directory.

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Night Elves, Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Ask a Lore Nerd

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