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Know Your Lore Tinfoil Hat Edition: How is flesh a curse?

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Please don your tinfoil hat - all that follows is speculation based on in-game evidence. It is not canonical lore endorsed by Blizzard.

One of the big reveals of Wrath of the Lich King is the Curse of Flesh. Upon our arrival in Ulduar's Halls of Stone, we escort Brann Bronzebeard to the Tribunal of Ages, a repository of Titan knowledge. After a fierce battle with the Tribunal's defense systems, Brann manages to access the Tribunal's information and learns the history of Azeroth, including how the Titans created Azeroth and how the Old Gods came to infest it, and how the Titan's creations of stone and iron were infected by the Curse of Flesh, making them more easily assimilated by the Old Gods. After defeating and imprisoning the Old Gods, the Titans re-engineered their creations to ensure they were no longer susceptible to the Curse... leaving the ones they'd already created to suffer it, and slowly change into the dwarves, gnomes, humans, troggs and their offshoots. Thus was Azeroth peopled in many cases.

It sounds plausible enough. But there are some problems with it - namely, not all of the Titans information sources agree with it. For instance, the first Titan trove accessed by the mortal races of Azeroth was in Uldaman, in the Badlands. This Titan complex, lying in the heart of the Eastern Kingdoms, is potentially the source of the dwarves and gnomes who live nearby in the mountains of Khaz Modan.

The Lore Keeper of Norgannon we meet at the end of Uldaman tells us that the Titans deviated from their normal plan when creating seed races.

A cross-section of Azeroth's crust was used as the foundation for the Earthen's synthesis rather than the typical biomass construction foundation used by the Creators.

Research on the world's composition led the Creators to theorize that an enhanced being could be synthesized that would epitomize the resiliency of this world's essence. This was accomplished by choosing to use a blend of Azeroth's various stone core compounds as the foundation.

What does this mean? Rather than the typical biomass construction foundation used by the Creators implies that the use of stone and other materials in the Titan constructs of Azeroth is not standard. This is not what the Titans usually do. Why did they do it on Azeroth, then? They appear to have done it quite extensively as well - the Earthen, the Mechagnomes, the Vrykul, the Mogu, the Tol'vir - a whole host of inorganic entities, using 'a cross-section of Azeroth's crust' to construct them. And why is the resilience of Azeroth's essence so remarkable?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Know your Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria, Warlords of Draenor

Know Your Lore: Titan facilities of Azeroth

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Let's just be up front about this now -- the Titans left stuff everywhere. It would be hard to disbelieve in them, frankly. They left bases, research stations, fortresses, labs and more. We don't even know what everything they left behind originally did or why it was there in many cases. Some places have somewhat clear reasons for existing (Ulduar, for instance, was tasked with holding the Old God Yogg Saron prisoner, but the Halls of Stone and Lightning point to other goals for the complex) but others, such as the ruined complex now known as Ahn'Qiraj was simply a 'research facility', and we have no idea what it was researching or why such a complex was needed so close to Uldum.

At any rate, there are a lot of Titan complexes currently known of on Azeroth.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Know your Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria

All the World's a Stage: Joining the right circle


One of the most common difficulties many roleplayers face is that of finding other people to roleplay with. To help overcome this challenge, All the World's a Stage presents a guide to finding roleplayers in three parts: "finding the right realm" for roleplaying, "joining the right circle" of roleplaying friends, and "wearing the right mask" to attract other roleplayers to you.

So, here you are. You decided that you want to give roleplaying a try, so you picked an RP server and started leveling up. You even tried roleplaying with one person you met along the way, saying "Hail, traveler! Would you like to undertake this task with me?" Things were going along quite nicely for a few minutes until the other person said, "Dood, this quest suxxors, lol," and you realized that something had gone horribly, terribly wrong.

A mystery baffles roleplayers everywhere: why is it that even on a space like an RP server, set aside for roleplaying, it can be so hard to find other people to roleplay with? Even if you have thoroughly researched the question of which server is the best place for roleplaying, still you will not be happy there until you find a circle of friends whose roleplaying you can appreciate, and who appreciate yours in return.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Guilds, Guides, RP, Forums, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

Drysc weighs in on the mysterious lost Titan city of Uldum

The Lorekeeper of Norgannon, in Uldaman.It seems like the possibilities of Uldum, in Southern Tanaris, have sparked the imagination of lore fans and adventurers ever since the first person turned in the Discs of Norgannon out of Uldaman. The wealth of Information we recieve from the quest about the intentions of the Titans (those whom the disc calls "The Creators") and the origin of not only the Dwarves, but possibly every sentient race on Azeroth, is tremendous, and Uldum only promises to bring more of it, revealing incredible secrets about the origin of life on this and perhaps other worlds.

Unfortunately, since we apparently need the Plates of Uldum to access it, it remains closed for now, and we're stuck with speculation about what could lurk in its halls. However, today, Drysc commented on the possibilities himself in a forum thread. While all he really confirmed is that they DO plan to open it at some point, it's still more than enough of a bone to get the old speculation machine turning.

Warning: Spoilers ahead!

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Filed under: Dwarves, Gnomes, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Instances, Quests, Expansions, Lore, RP, NPCs, Forums, Rumors

Breakfast Topic: Your Super Bowl plans

Super Bowl XLII lands later today like expansion launch day for football fanatics. The New England Patriots are coming off a perfect 19-0 season and if they win today's game they will be the first team to have a perfect record for the season. The New York Giants, on the other hand, haven't had a chance at the brass ring in 8 years and are clearly the underdogs.

Confused? Let me translate: The Patriots are the Horde in Arathi Basin and the Giants are the Alliance. Ah, I see the light bulb above your head now.

For those of you who enjoy both WoW and American football, what are your plans today? Did you call off a raid to watch the game? Or are you logging in during Super Bowl hoping for a less crowded server? Let us know.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

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