Jul 14th 2009 4:11PM I'd be more impressed if Nikki Cox was there, too.
May 28th 2009 4:49AM Well, at 187 comments, people have probably already talked about what I am about to but here goes anyway:
1) Varian is the figurehead of the Alliance for many reasons, not the least of which because none of the other leaders wanted the job. But from a strictly statistical point of view, Stormwind/humans ARE the dominant force within the Alliance. The Draenei are basically refugees; the majority of what's left of their race is in Outland with no intention of leaving, and the ones on Azeroth are basically a congregation of crash victims. Along with that, most of the other Alliance races (especially humans) consider the Draenei to be freaky aliens; go hang around in the commander chamber of Valiance Keep sometime to see how xenophobic the humans act to the draenei delegation there.
Likewise, the Night Elves are a group of refugees too. Not only is their race a fraction of what it was pre-Sundering, but a good majority of their population was wiped out during the Third War and its aftermath (Ilidan's rampage, the resurgance of the Qiraji, the fighting in Ashenvale, etc). So they don't really have the numbers to call the shots for the Alliance as a whole. The Gnomes, as was pointed out, were already refugees from their home and have to rely on Ironforge and dwarves are pretty strong, except their military might is already divided between guarding their outposts across Khaz Modan and the rest conscripted into the Explorer's League and the Alliance; they're stretched pretty thin.
Meanwhile, Stormwind has very little real territory to defend; early human questing reveals that the outlying territories (Darkshire, Westfall etc) rely heavily on local militias. And the Stormwind population is comprised not just of the original Stormwind families but also the remnants of Lordaeron, Stromgarde, Southshore and probably even some Alterac citizens. They also control the only working port in the eastern hemisphere (two if you count Menethil Harbor as a human port in dwarf lands; Booty Bay doesn't count as it's a pirate port). So all that considered, Stormwind wear the pants in the Alliance and like it or not, Varian is its king and the people will follow his commands out of fear, duty, or out of respect to Llane and Bolvar.
2) A major reason the Alliance goes along with Varian's hatred of the Horde is because EVERY race in the Alliance has a history of violence at the hands of some faction within the new Horde. The draenei were butchered by orcs and driven from Outland by blood elves; the night elves saw their beloved demigod killed by orcs, who continue to hack and slash their sacred home; the gnomes lost countless pilots during the Second War and the dwarves saw the entirety of Khaz Modan invaded and dominated by the Horde, also in the Second War. And let's not forget the Forsaken, which was a breakaway faction of the Scourge that killed thousands of Alliance citizens and continues to attempt to extinguish the living at every turn.
3) The problem with Thrall is that he's a naieve idealist; he built his entire faction around a purpose that not everyone within it shares. The jungle trolls rely on the orcs for protection, the tauren are blood brothers to the orcs after Thrall saved their race from extinction, but the Forsaken and blood elves work for the Horde simply due to limited options. Thrall took them in because of what they brought to the table and their promises of redemption, but it was really a devils bargain and I think only now is Thrall starting to realize the cost of the pacts he made. And Garrosh sees the dissention, sees the conflicts the Forsaken and blood elves and orcs within the new Horde that wish to return to the old ways have with the Alliance, and he's trying to use these elements to create a powerbase to overthrow Thrall or, at the very least, his idealism; he's taking all that hatred of the Alliance and is harnessing it to consolidate his own power within the Horde.
Final thought: It's entirely possible (and frankly, it's the way I think the writers at Blizzard are moving this story) that Varian and Garrosh are probably under the influence of Yogg-Saron, Arthas, or both. By taking two up-and-coming leaders that are massively popular within their factions and twisting them against each other, the bad guys of "Wrath" are trying to divide their enemies from within so they'll be too weak to stand up to the real threats when they make their ultimate move(s).
Apr 28th 2009 7:49PM Haven't we been here many, many times before though?
Before and during 1.9, they asked our suggestions - I think the thread was called "By Uther's Hammer" or something. Pages and pages of feedback, largely ignored.
When Burning Crusade came out, we got a strike(!). It was quickly nerfed and took about a year to be reversed. Again they asked for feedback, again it was largely ignored; we had to SHOUT to get something as basic to every DPS as threat reduction. Everything else was postponed until Wrath.
When Wrath was in Beta, we made MORE pages of suggestions, and the original version of Art of War was linked to Crusader Strike (if I recall). Also many people suggested ways to make Crusader Strike and Divine Storm more interesting, than just wattered down versions of Warrior abilities. Again, largely ignored. And people have been saying Blessing of Kings should have been baseline for YEARS, it finally took them until patch 3.1 to do it.
When GC and his team started beating our burst damage with the nerfbat like a Vegas bookie, while still trying to maintain our PvE damage for Ulduar, we made MORE SUGGESTIONS to boost average damage instead of burst. It was avoided and we were given everywhere-Exorcism, a burst damage spell. Which was quickly nerfed. Oh, and when they nerfed our burst damage and mobility, we said we needed some better PvP controls to compensate and stay competitive - still ignored to this day.
So, forgive me for not jumping on Blizzard's "We Need Your Feedback!" bandwagon for the umptienth-million time.
Apr 26th 2009 6:40PM Great article, it really highlights Varian's story and point of view.
Ultimately, I see the Icecrown patch and end of Wrath involving one or more of the following:
- Thrall and/or Jaina will die, becoming martyrs for their cause.
- Varian and/or Garrosh will die.
- Saurfang will become the new Warchief (and Chuck Norris-style jokes notwithstanding, Blizzard will have to pump out some books/novels to give him more depth ASAP).
- Sylvanas will be revealed to be behind the RAS after all and/or will become the new leader of the Scourge (assuming the Lich King dies/posesses her).
I just get the feeling that one or more of those things will happen.
Apr 26th 2009 4:18PM We have to remember that the Lich King is the fusion of two people; a human prince of Lordaeron and an orc shaman that led the very first incarnation of the Horde. So the Lich King has extensive knowledge about both factions and is no doubt using that to turn both sides against each other.
After all, the Scourge has made enemies with EVERYONE - the Legion, the Illidari, Mal'Ganis, the entire Blood Elf/High elf race, the Argent & Scarlet Crusades, the Ebon Blade defectors, the Kirin Tor, every dragonflight that had their bones stolen to make frost wyrms, and the Alliance and Horde and their sub-factions, most notable the survivors of Lordaeron and the Forsaken. If you had all of those armies coming after you, your ONLY chance would to be to get them to fight each other and getting the Alliance and Horde to go to war is the biggest way to accomplish that.
Of course, Yogg-Saron could be behind it all too, as Ulduar shows that even the servants of the Titans are vulnerable to corruption.
Feb 1st 2009 10:30PM How is Vindication considered a raiding build talent? It doesn't affect bosses and trash dies fast. Pursuit, Vindication and Divine Purpose are all optional, imo.
Nov 1st 2008 6:19PM Just give it up, man. It's obvious they're just treating the whole game (Beta, PTR, Live, it doesn't matter) like it's a Beta test, and they're using hotfixes because they wasted their time and Wrath is due.
Just come back after Thanksgiving and maybe, MAYBE, they'll have their heads out of their cracks and things will be back to normal.
Oct 3rd 2008 7:48PM "None of the above weapons are ideal for a protection paladin."
This is untrue as of patch 3.0.2. The way the Protection 51 point talent, Hammer of the Righteous, is shaping up, higher weapon damage will make the talent scale better and thus, add more damage which translates into more threat.
Sep 11th 2008 5:18PM I want to see a couple of people dressed in death knight and paladin costumes beat the crap out of each other at certain intervals throughout the day.
Or something to do with Brewfest; maybe some free beer IRL at the event from a big wooden keg.
Aug 31st 2008 6:28PM You have alot more faith in them than the rest of us do, Zach. I really want to believe that you are right and a) they'll even get to our "2nd pass" before 3.0 launches and b) that they'll fix Ret mana issue and tone down the damage in the right areas and not in the wrong ones.
I really don't want this to turn into the BC situation all over again.