Oct 6th 2008 1:01AM I've had no end of fun playing this out on my draenei, so I'm going to detail the naaru conspiracy theory here. Of course, there are reasons this may not happen, but that makes playing it even more enjoyable.
Imagine, if you would, you're born on Draenor during the long centuries before the corruption of the orcs. Imagine you're raised on stories of the magnificent naaru who shepherded your people from the grips of an unimaginable evil, who prevented you from becoming twisted demon-lords of unimaginable power, and led you in flight after flight from your home-world. You're told this by your parents, the local vindicator, the Aldor, and chances are you've had a sermon from the great Prophet Velen himself at one point or another in your long, long life. At the core draenei are more than just spiritual. They're the products of a very sound theocracy of the holy light.
Now imagine everything goes to hell. All you ever loved is destroyed, as well as most of your family and friends. Your once great species is forced to hide on the edges of the world while the monsters empowered by your enemies refrain from delivering the killing blow only because they think you and your kind are extinct. You'll be dimly aware that the orcs are mobilized for war on another world. Wars go by, eventually the world explodes (killing more draenei in the process), and then nothing. It's not until the demon-crawling planet is conquered by Illidan do the the naaru show up.
This is the point where you realize they have a tendency to show up late. Instead of preaching the good of the light to the eredar on Argus, they speak to one person and let him rally who he can by himself in secret. That's not a winning strategy for saving a race, but it is a pretty good way to go about building a corps of super loyal zealots, since only those who're willing to risk eternity on good faith will survive. Then they let the most horrendous and unspeakable terrors in the universe whittle away the recovering population before showing up on a golden chariot to save the faithful yet again. Of course, they seem more interested in helping the Aldor priesthood establish control in an all but abandoned capitol than safeguarding the majority of draenei survivors in the Tempest Keep, which leads to the crash on Azeroth, more needless bloodshed, and one conspicuous naaru powering powering a derelict vessel. The ship has crashed on a verdant island, it'll never fly or dimension-hop again, why does it need a naaru to keep its core glowy?
Of course, it's the other naaru in Tempest Keep that's the real concern. M'uru is taken by the blood elves, ostensibly held by their great magics, and used to fuel a generation of holy warriors that ensures the admittance of the blood elves into the Orcish Horde. This dramatically changes the balance of power on Azeroth. The naaru know the draenei seek the Alliance of Lordaeron, the heroes who've stood against the monsters that have plagued them for decades. The revelation that M'uru was a willing participant in this should be damning. How many draenei have died to blood elf paladins? To hordes of orcs and Horde raiders supported and healed by their 'holy' powers?
Of course, you could say they did this for the Greater Good. They're building a vast army of light! If you read into that, it suggests they might not need the draenei anymore. After all, Sargearas seems to have been put down by humies during the first war, and Archimonde was killed in the battle of Hyjal, all without the draenei getting involved. Perhaps the naaru no longer feel the draenei are all that useful? Perhaps they want to test their strength further? But a good, noble draenei would put away such concern (even if your friends and loved ones were tortured and killed by blood knights on the Isles) to take up arms against the Burning Legion! Except, the naaru seem more concerned about putting down Illidan Stormrage than anything else. They do send Aldor and Scyer underlings to the fight for Tempest Keep, but only the Illidari front has an actual naaru manning the lines. Much can be said about Illidan, he may be evil, he may be redeemable, he may be insane, but he is most definitely NOT a servant of the Burning Legion. Indeed, until the naaru showed up in Shattrath he's been the greatest enemy of the Legion in Outland. He's done good things in the past, and if his mind were to be cleared of the madness he's fallen into since his defeat in Northrend, he'd be a great ally. You would think great beings of light would make every effort to redeem and clear the mind of such a powerful potential ally. Unless, of course, they don't want him to speak to the Horde and Alliance with a clear mind.
But such things are absurd! The naaru are beings of pure light and goodness! They've told us so! Your mind is filled with soothing music whenever you're in their presence! The notion that these beings, who allow for so much carnage and filth to befall their followers, who allow those who've trusted their lives in their teachings to all but perish, could be anything but beings of pure and true light is beyond belief.
But if you're particularly cynical, and you start to examine the naaru not by how you feel around them but by their track record, you may notice some disturbing things. You may see all draenei history as the results of their manipulation. You may wonder why, if one such being can prevent a direct assault on Shattrath, why we've never seen one actually fight a demon. You may think that their psychic presence offers them a degree of persuasion, of control, to those around them. You may try to come up with a rational incentive to explain all their actions, and you may not like the answer you get.
Oct 6th 2008 12:14AM The immortal thing is up for debate, but ten-lifetimes could simply mean ten generations, the average time it takes for a group of newborns to get about making another bunch of newborns. Or, more likely still, it's just a generic term they use for a really, really, really long time. If you've hopped across dozens of worlds in your lifetime, 'year' doesn't really mean anything, does it?
That said, we have Velen who is quite possibly older than Azeroth, and at least one quest NPC who claims to remember Argus (the one with those mushroom quests, hardly a neigh-omnipotent messiah blessed by beings from beyond).
I'm not sure what the cryo-capsules where there for, but it's quite possible they exist to keep food supplies from being exhausted on an interdimensional voyage, or possibly as a means to protect draenei from the cosmic forces there. Either way, they couldn't have spent the last 25,000 years there because the Exodar, as well as all of Tempest Keep, only arrived recently. The draenei arrived on Draenor in Oshu-gun, which seems to have melted down or become inert or something. Tempest Keep is an entirely new intervention directly from the naaru. The span of time between the orc genocide and the arrival of Tempest Keep is one of the bigger points of the whole Naaru conspiracy theory I mentioned earlier.
Oct 5th 2008 7:08PM I'd like to point out that they do have a darker side. When they do loose the faith, and they all have a multitude of good reasons to loose it, they're capable of some very dark things. It's one of the greatest pities in Burning Crusade that the Auchenai death-cult is never developed.
And a personal note, depending on how you choose to read the history, the naaru themselves can be interpreted as a malevolent influence on the draenei. If you keep a record of when they've intervened for the draenei, when they left them to die, and what they've done since the launch of Burning Crusade they can look much less fatherly and benevolent and much more cruel. I'm personally fond of the theory that they've been trying to shape and breed the draenei into their own super-warriors, just like Sargeras did with the eredar.
Oct 4th 2008 9:03PM The deep freeze nerf sucks, but in the back of my mind I can't help think it might have been justified.
When I first got on the beta, deep freeze was in its glory. I could slap down subtlety rogues for the first time since level 60. The only class that was ever able to consistently beat me was an unholy death knight. Ret pallies were broken as hell and I would still come out on top. And as awesome as that was... well, being able to handle most any class in 1v1 might just have been over-powered.
I do miss it, though. Deep Freeze was just awesome back then. It felt great, an ultimate 'Denied!' in a fight. Right now... it's just not fun. PvE frost mages have no reason to ever cast anything but frostbolt off of Fingers of Frost procs, and since all we can realistically expect is an ice-lance spam off of a Deep Frozen target in arena, mage scaling will still suffer after a season or two of Wrath.
Sep 29th 2008 8:01PM A few months into BC, I took my freshly crafted spellfire set into a battleground and realized that my PvP-mage would never get anything useful out of tailoring for the remainder of the expansion. Are the crafting professions (tailoring, leatherworking, and balcksmithing particularly) still PvE only, or will they expand to include some items useful for PvP in Wrath?
Sep 7th 2008 11:42AM If/when naga become playable, that will be my new main.
Sep 6th 2008 6:46PM I'd like to disagree about frost and PvP. All my plans so far have me going at least eight points into arcane for a passive 80 resistance to every spell school. Usually I go a bit further for the extra 6% damage to ice lance (and fire blast, and arcane explosion) in Spell Impact.
If frost stays the PvP spec, which I'm fairly confident it will, I can very easily see most people who take it going at least a few tiers into arcane for its big survivability talents, to say nothing of Spell Impact, and maybe even the old improved counterspell stand-by.
Sep 1st 2008 11:33AM I have two questions about frost mages: does shattered barrier proc if ice barrier is dispelled, or only when it's absorbed enough damage to end itself, and does deep freeze count as a freeze effect, or just a stun?
Aug 17th 2008 11:37AM My only big complaint at the moment is the icon-graphic for Frostfire Bolt. That thing is hideous.
Jul 25th 2008 12:08AM I really hope this isn't the 'polish pass'. Arcane was already pretty neat, and though it's admittedly neater now, Fire and Frost were what needed work.