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Blizzard introduces new official story forum

A lot of us lore nerds have been wanting it for a long time, and now we have it: An official place to discuss the lore of the Warcraft universe. Of course, it's technically called the Story Forum, and one of the blue stickies on the forum suggests that this forum is meant to focus on "the publishing division" of Blizzard's creative development (i.e., the novels and manga). Then again, the forum's main welcome sticky states that the forum is for discussing the stories of Warcraft "as told in-game and through the novels, manga, comics, and short stories that Blizzard publishes." So in theory the exact nature of the forum could be considered a bit iffy.

Still, I'm going to go ahead and go by the welcome message and declare it a lore forum. No longer will we have to go searching through pages and pages of flames, rants, and class balance whines to find the lore-based flames, rants, and Garrosh vs. Varian debate threads. Nethaera also revealed that the publishing division plans to look at the Forum discussions to get an idea of what people like and don't like about Warcraft's stories, so if you've been writing an epic rant about Med'an or Rhonin, you may finally have the outlet you've always wanted. You can find the forum here.

If you need extra ammunition before jumping into the discussion yourself, be sure to check out our lore guide, as well as past entries of our Know Your Lore column.

After the jump, you can check out the forum welcome message, as well as some additional words from Nethaera on Blizzard's Creative Development Team and lore resources.

Nethaera
Welcome to the Warcraft Story Forum! This forum is here as a means for players to discuss the storylines of the Warcraft universe, as told in-game and through the novels, manga, comics, and short stories that Blizzard publishes.

Code of Conduct:
http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/policy/forum-coc.html

Also, please use the search function at the top of the page to find information on a topic before you post a question. Your fellow community members will appreciate it.

If you are new to MMORPGs, please take a look at our guide on how to start your adventures in World of Warcraft:

Getting Started:
http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/info/basics/gettingstarted.html

Please note that while the members of the Community team will be moderating these discussions as normal, members of the Creative Development team will also be monitoring discussions, and looking for constructive feedback.

Have fun posting on these forums, and good luck with your adventures in Azeroth!


Nethaera
What is Creative Development?

Creative Development (CDev) is a "hub" within Blizzard, facilitating the development of ancillary products and services that tie into Blizzard's game universes. While there are several different divisions of CDev, this Warcraft Story forum focuses on the efforts of the Publishing division.

What does Creative Development's Publishing division have to do with Warcraft's stories and lore?

The Publishing division within Creative Development is the driving force behind every published story you've seen outside of the game: short stories, novels, comics, and manga.

Who comprises the Publishing division of Creative Development?

Publishing is made of two groups:

-Story Development: this group focuses on story idea creation, story outlining, and story development for licensed fiction, as well as for internally-written stories
-Historians: this group is the repository for all Blizzard lore, providing counsel for the game development teams and the CDev Story Development group

What is the Publishing division's usual process for developing a story?

- Idea Generation & Outline Creation: Working with Chris Metzen and the designers on the respective game's development team, the Story Development team generates an idea and an outline for a story. The writer on the project is typically invited to our offices at this point in the project, so that they can be in on the ground floor of the story's creation.
- Story Development & Lore Checking: Over the course of the project, the Story Development team talks constantly with the writer, as well as with Chris Metzen and the game developers, in order to help hone the story into a Blizzard-quality tale. At the same time, our Historian team combs through the iterations of the story in order ensure that the story adheres to the universe's established canon.


What does the Publishing division hope to accomplish with this Warcraft Story forum?

We'd like to give the community a chance to influence the development of our upcoming stories, so we're trying something new; this forum will serve as a direct line to our story developers. Please note that we're not looking for fully-formed stories - save those for the Global Writing Contest (which we operate and judge) - but rather we're looking for specific examples of what people like, don't like, and what they would like to see (story-wise) from us in the future.


Nethaera
Looking for more Warcraft information, but don't know where to start? Whether you've played Warcraft I, II, or III, these books will showcase the people and events that have shaped the Warcraft universe over the last few (in-game) decades:

  • Rise of the Horde by Christie Golden - http://us.blizzard.com/store/details.xml?id=110000083
    Set before the orcs invade Azeroth for the first time, this story explores what the orc race was like before its clans were forged into a single savage Horde under the influence of the demonic Burning Legion. Part of the novel focuses on the orc Orgrim Doomhammer and his childhood friend, Durotan (who would later become Thrall's father). Other parts of the story depict the aging shaman Ner'zhul; his ambitious apprentice, Gul'dan; the mighty Grommash Hellscream; the wise draenei leader, Velen; and several other significant characters.


  • The Last Guardian by Jeff Grubb - http://us.blizzard.com/store/details.xml?id=110000055
    This is a good introduction to older human history in Warcraft, with emphasis on the events of the First War (Warcraft I). Medivh, the Guardian of Tirisfal, decides to take on an apprentice: the young mage Khadgar. As time goes on, Khadgar learns that a half-orc named Garona is acting as a secret emissary to the nation of Stormwind. While he and Garona try to reach an understanding, Khadgar realizes that Medivh's behavior is growing increasingly erratic. Ultimately he and Sir Anduin Lothar, the childhood friend of both Medivh and King Llane Wrynn of Stormwind, reach a terrible realization: Medivh, an incredibly powerful wizard, is under the control of Sargeras, Destroyer of Worlds, creator of the demonic Burning Legion. This novel is also in print as part of the Warcraft Archive.


  • Beyond the Dark Portal by Aaron Rosenberg and Christie Golden – Currently Out of Stock in Blizzard Store, can be found on Amazon.com here: http://www.amazon.com/World-Warcraft-Beyond-Dark-Portal/dp/1416550860/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269289009&sr=8-1
    This is a good introduction to Alliance and Horde history during the events of Warcraft IIx. Instead of starting a new war, the shaman Ner'zhul has decided to open dimensional rifts from the orc homeworld of Draenor into fresh new worlds to conquer. Horrified at the possibility, Sir Lothar's former lieutenant, the human paladin Turalyon, leads an Alliance expedition into Draenor to stop Ner'zhul. With Turalyon are the mage Khadgar and the ranger Alleria Windrunner (the older sister of Sylvanas and Vereesa). Alleria and Turalyon began falling in love with one another in the Second War, but Alleria turned her back on Turalyon after the Horde invaded Quel'Thalas and killed many of her people. In the midst of battle on an alien world, can their relationship be mended? And can the Alliance expedition reach Ner'zhul in time to stop the Horde from bringing death and destruction into new worlds?


  • Lord of the Clans by Christie Golden - http://us.blizzard.com/store/details.xml?id=110000056
    This story depicts the life of Warchief Thrall, starting only a short while after Thrall was born. Raised among humans as a slave, Thrall became a master gladiator before deciding that he would escape his slavery. The story depicts Thrall's subsequent friendship with Grom Hellscream, as well as Thrall's journey to rejoin his clan and master the shamanic arts. When a disguised Warchief Orgrim Doomhammer provokes Thrall into a challenge to single combat, Thrall fights his first truly momentous battle: a fight whose consequences will change the course of history. This novel is also in print as part of the Warcraft Archive.


  • Arthas: Rise of the Lich King by Christie Golden - http://us.blizzard.com/store/details.xml?id=1100000405
    This story explores the life and character of Prince Arthas Menethil leading up to the events of the Third War (Warcraft III) and Warcraft IIIx. As the plague of undeath ravaged Lordaeron, fear and desperation drove the prince to more ruthless measures until he had utterly lost his way. The story also explores the romance he shared with Lady Jaina Proudmoore, in addition to the unrequited love that the high elf prince, Kael'thas Sunstrider, bore for Jaina.


The above stories are but the tip of the iceberg.

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Lore

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