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Posts with tag Loken

Know Your Lore: Lore summed up part 4 - Wrath of the Lich King continued


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.

Last week's coverage of the lore of Wrath of the Lich King got to the thematic middle point of the expansion - the Wrathgate event. It changed the nature of Horde/Alliance relations, breaking any possibility for faction cooperation. It also capped off the Dragonblight storyline - Horde players had to deal with the realization that the very plague used on Horde troops by Putress was created by their efforts questing in the zone, while Alliance players saw the loss of one of the more beloved lore figures on their side, Highlord Bolvar Fordragon. (The last name Fordragon means "He who cleaves on Dragons' in old Arathi. Okay, no it doesn't. But Bolvar absolutely did that.) Combined with the way Bolvar's previous encounters with players had been worked into the quests, it was a gut punch to lose him.

It was far from the end of the story, however. We had miles to go before we reached the foot of Icecrown Citadel. I mentioned, briefly, the Arugal storyline in the Grizzly Hills, but there was also the story of the Furbolg in the region - a story that touched upon earlier zones such as the Howling Fjord and the Whisper Gulch. These stories would be shown to be of vast importance, and connected to that of an entity named Loken, who was directing the plunder of ancient Titan sites across Northrend by a force of strange Iron Dwarves.

The story of Loken would, in a way, eclipse that of Arthas Menethil without displacing him - for while the Lich King was a clear and present danger and the reason the Alliance and Horde had come to Northend, Loken would prove to endanger Azeroth far more directly. If the Lich King succeeded, the Scourge would rule a world dominated by the undead. If Loken had his way, there would be no Azeroth at all.

The machinations of these two forces both involved a strange material called Saronite - the Scourge forces seemed determined to mine this unusual metal from specific dark corners of the land beneath Northrend's surface. Whisper Gulch, too, teemed with it. But what was Saronite, and why did the Scourge seemingly loathe and fear the name Yogg-Saron while still using the stuff?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Know your Lore, Wrath of the Lich King

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: Carved by similar hands

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.

Spoilers for patch 5.3 to follow.

Well, if you like spoilers, this is going to be the post for you. Because it is based heavily in the spoilers revealed in Olivia's post about datamined patch 5.3 sound files, and my own musings about what certain things revealed in those files really mean. We find out that yes, as we've already suspected, the seventh Sha did in fact remain free from bondage for the past ten thousand years, that its sinister hand can be felt in everything that's befallen Pandaria, and that the mists parting did in fact have to happen for the good of all. We also hear hints that Y'shaarj may not be as dead as we all hope he is. The fact that digging in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms has something to do with his return is even more portentous. What does this all mean?

This week, I'm going to speculate wildly on one possible thing it could all mean. The Prophecy of C'thun has always fascinated me.

In the time before time, when the world was still in its infancy, a battle between a Titan and a being of unimaginable evil and power raged on this very soil. The prophecy is unclear about whether or not the Titan was vanquished in this battle but it illustrates that a Titan fell. An Old God had also fallen - or so it was thought.

The interesting thing is in the lines "The prophecy is unclear about whether or not the Titan was vanquished in this battle but it illustrates that a Titan fell." Falling doesn't have to mean death. There are many different ways to fall, after all.

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

Know Your Lore: Algalon the Observer

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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.
I have seen worlds bathed in the Makers' flames. Their denizens fading without so much as a whimper. Entire planetary systems born and razed in the time that it takes your mortal hearts to beat once.
The Titans are creatures of myth and mystery to the mortals of Azeroth. While some Azerothians (most notably Brann Bronzebeard) seek to unravel their secrets, most remain blissfully unaware and uncaring of the origins of the world. But the mysteries Brann works so hard to uncover more often than not raise far more questions than they answer, and in some cases, create havoc that could reduce our world to ashes in the blink of an eye.

In Ulduar, Brann sought to uncover the further secrets of the origin of the dwarves, something that the Explorer's League has been working on since the early days of WoW and the first player steps into the Titan stronghold of Uldaman. But what Brann uncovered was a massive facility that wasn't just for the storage of information from times long past. The facility of Ulduar and its corrupt Titans weren't anywhere near as much of a threat to the world as what came after Loken's defeat in the Halls of Lightning. For it was the moment of his defeat that the failsafe was tripped and the signal was sent.

And it was Loken's death that heralded the arrival of Algalon the Observer and the end of the world.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Encrypted Text: Cataclysm heroics from a rogue's perspective

Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the rogue class. This week, we discuss the new heroic dungeons in the upcoming expansion.

I remember what it was like to play a rogue in dungeons in vanilla WoW. Our only form of long-term crowd control was Sap, and it brought us out of stealth every time we used it. Subtlety rogues could spend three talent points on Improved Sap, which still left Sap knocking us out of Stealth a tenth of the time. Every mob had some sort of AoE or whirlwind-style attack, and rogues were often right behind tanks in terms of healing necessary.

We've come a long way since the old days. Tricks of the Trade, with its instant threat transfer, has become the crutch that supports even the greenest tanks. Fan of Knives is one of the best AoE abilities in the game and synergizes with our poisons for incredible potency. Improved Sap has been baked in to the ability, and we can use our CC safely on a wide variety of targets. Feint's new ability to reduce our AoE damage taken also allows us to survive most attacks. You might say that rogues are nearly perfect for running heroics. Unfortunately for us, Cataclysm's heroics have a thing or two to teach us about complacency.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Know Your Lore: The Eternals part three -- the Titans


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.

The Eternals of Azeroth are by and large fairly well known by the mortal races -- the Ancients of the night elves were a strong presence in the War of the Ancients, and the trolls worked intimately with their Loa gods. But there are still Eternals out there that are by and large unknown quantities in the universe -- vague historical records have been made, but the mortal races are mostly in the dark as to who these Eternals really are, and what their purpose is in the world.

Of all of the Eternals, the ones that remain the biggest mystery are the Titans, specifically the Pantheon of titans that were responsible for Azeroth's creation as we know it today. While the dwarves have uncovered a lot of information recently, there are still large chunks of time seemingly out of order or unaccounted for. There are a few different timelines, and varying opinions on what exactly occurred in each timeline -- so writing about the Titans and the creation of the world is an exercise in careful speculation. Today we'll be looking at the Pantheon -- the titan high council -- who they were, what roles they played in Azeroth, and where they are today, as well as taking a look at the creation of Azeroth.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Two Bosses Enter: Eregos a finalist; Anub'Arak faces Ymiron

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. We're moving from the quarter-finals into the semi-finals of the Original Five-Man Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

Welcome, one and all, to the last semi-final match of this season of Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves! This week, we'll pit semi-finalists Anub'Arak (Azjol-Nerub) against King Ymiron (Utgarde Pinnacle). Both bosses enter on the wings of strong victories. Anub'Arak comes to the Thunderdome with a 64.5% approval rating from his last match, while King Ymiron brings a 64.1% rating from his own supporters.

But first, a big upset from last week's Thunderdome. In a spectacular reversal of their July deathmatch, Ley-Guardian Eregos pulled out a decisive victory over Loken. After being voted back in to the Thunderdome despite his earlier loss, Eregos showed new confidence to claim a position in this season's finals. A solid 56.5% of spectators gave Eregos the upper hand this time around, compared to only 36.9% the last time he faced off against Loken. We'll recap the battle as well as opening up voting for Anub'Arak versus King Ymiron, after the break.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Ymiron moves on; Eregos and Loken rematch

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. We're moving from the quarter-finals into the semi-finals of the Original Five-Man Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

This week, the Original Five-Man Wrath of the Lich King season of Two Bosses Enter moves into the semi-finals with a repeat match: Ley-Guardian Eregos versus Loken. If you believe voters cheated Loken out of his last victory against the Ley-Guardian based on their distaste for Eregos and The Oculus, now's your chance to set things right!

In last week's final quarter-finals battle, King Ymiron demonstrated the power behind his throne with a decisive Thunderdome victory over Krik'thir the Gatewatcher. More than 64 percent of the crowd roared its support for the King, while just shy of one-third believed Krik'thir could hold his own. Here's a sampling of the debate from the stands:

Dreamstorm: This is one complicated fight. I'm going to wait with voting until I read what others think and why.

Qot: Two Bosses Enter is sort of like the NBA All-Star voting. The people decide, but they usually decide based on reputation or history rather than actual skill. Xevozz was perfectly tuned to kill Loken, but Loken's a BAMF in the lore, so he wins the match.

Dreamstorm: If the king wins, we'll have ourselves a Nerubian, a Vrykul, a blue dragon and a creation of the Titans ... PIT FIGHT!! :D

Eddy: I was kind of thinking that. I feel like I'm biased towards King because then the fights would just seem so balanced -- the end bosses from a number of lore-intensive instances. I feel like the lore supports the king's victory.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Lore, Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Loken slips past Xevozz, Ymiron battles Krik'thir

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. Welcome to the quarter-finals of the Original Five-Man Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

When the magical energies had died down, it was indeed Loken who remained standing in last week's Thunderdome matchup against Xevozz. The Dark Titan fought for every vote, claiming his victory with 52% spectator approval. We'll review how things went down after the break, plus you'll get a chance to vote in the last quarter-finals match of the season: Ymiron versus Krik'thir.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls ... Dyin' time's here.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Eregos dismounts Skadi, Loken takes on Xevozz

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. Welcome to the quarter-finals of the Original Five-Man Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

In a barrage of wings, Ley-Guardian Eregos confronted Skadi the Ruthless in the skies over the Thunderdome last week. Let's just say it was no party for Mr. Skadi. Eregos took the match with a stinging 75.3% of the spectator vote, sending the hapless Frost Vrykul plummeting from the match. We'll get a view of the beat-down after the break, plus we'll set up this week's battle between Loken and Xevozz.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls ... Dyin' time's here.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

One Boss Leaves: Loken shockwaves Gal'darah

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. This season's combatants come from the original five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

Returning underdog Loken showed why he was among the fighters readers voted back into the season, downing Gal'darah this week in the Two Bosses Thunderdome. Fifty-eight percent of the vote went to the Dark Titan from the Halls of Lightning. Gal'darah brought in some positive comments but ultimately lacked the votes to carry him through.

Elovan: Gal'darah could easily shift to rhino form and simply Impale Loken anytime he tries to use his novas. That plus his insane whirlwind could take down Loken pretty easily imho

catharsis80: Don't forget Enrage, enabling him to attack 125% faster than Loken does, and considering the article says they have "comparative overall damage output"... Yeah, I think the results are quite obvious, since Gal can interrupt and Loken can't. PLUS, Pulsing Shockwave will do practically nothing to Gal, since he'll be all over Loken like white on rice.

Nolls74: This, plus Gal has his rhino buddies who will charge Loken and knock him around like a rag doll. All of you picking Loken have no sense of style and are only judging it based on "Loken sucks for players; he must be the ultimate boss."

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Gal'darah vs. Loken

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. This season's combatants come from the original five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

This week's match in the Two Bosses Thunderdome makes the healer in me cringe: Gal'darah (Gundrak) versus Loken (Halls of Lightning). Gal'darah steps into the Thunderdome on the laurels of a solid 68.4 percent victory in his last battle against Moorabi. However fearsome his reputation, Loken creeps into the ring as an underdog, having lost his most recent battle against Anub'arak and subsequently re-earning a berth through the reader vote that brought back three vanquished combatants.

This week's ground rules:
  • Assume that the opponents share similar levels, health pools and comparative overall damage output.
  • This deathmatch takes place in neutral territory, which shall in no way hinder either opponent from using his usual resources.
  • Don't get caught up in gameplay mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter.
  • Don't neglect style, story and scale.
Let the doors open, let the crowds take to their feet. Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls ... Dyin' time's here.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter, Wrath of the Lich King

One Boss Leaves: Anub'Arak pounds Loken

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. Welcome to Round Two of the five-man originals Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

The results from the last match of this bracket are in: Anub'Arak (Azjol-Nerub) has clearly given Loken (Halls of Lightning) a solid pounding, 55% to 40%. While some readers seemed puzzled by this week's pairing (kozom: "bug + zapper = ???"), Sunsinger wove a lengthy tale of Anub'Arak's emergence as the victor:

Yes, he knew this presence. He felt it only few times before, but beings of metal and lightning did not forget things easily. After all, his body was a masterpiece, one that probably surpassed all of the Titans' creations left on Azeroth in terms of fine craftsmanship. Not only had he known the appearance of his guest the moment the latter stepped into the Halls, he also was easily reading his intentions. Even if not for his mind sensors, it wasn't hard to tell that the Spider King came here to kill him. For a being of such ambition, the Lich King was even late to try and eliminate his most immediate rival, the Old God, because both of them were not the type of beings that liked to share power, and the Prime Designate knew that he stood somewhere between them and that sooner or later he would have to face the forces of the Scourge. And he would defeat them.

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Anub'Arak vs. Loken

Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. Welcome to Round Two of the five-man Wrath of the Lich King season. Grab a seat, and let's get ready to rumble!

Here we are: the final matchup of the second bracket of Two Bosses Enter, featuring the five-man bosses of original Wrath. Before we loose our competitors to one another's depradations inside the Thunderdome, we'd like to remind spectators that we'll have an extra vote next week to balance out the bracket. We'll be taking your votes from among every loser so far (including Round One). The top three underdogs will return to compete in the next bracket (for a total of 16 competitors).

And now ... Anub' Arak of Azjol-Nerub versus Loken from the Halls of Lightning. The ground rules:
  • Assume that the opponents along with their minions share similar levels, health pools and comparative overall damage output.
  • This deathmatch takes place in neutral territory (or a Thunderdome facsimile thereof), which shall in no way hinder either opponent from using his usual resources.
  • All the usual minions will be available to each boss.
  • Don't get caught up in gameplay mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter.
  • Don't neglect style, story and scale.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls ... Dyin' time's here.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

One Boss Leaves: Loken clears Round One


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

Loken. You knew he was going to win, even before you saw who he was going up against – he's just built that kind of a rep. As with all Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves matches, however, it's how they get there that makes it interesting. Apologies that I wasn't able to wrap up this battle for you last week while I was on vacation. Rest assured that I'd never leave our hungry spectators hanging! This week, let's look back at some of the lore-based points readers brought out about Loken versus Ley-Guardian Eregos.

Rai: Even if by some miracle Loken managed to win, due to Eregos' being faster, able to shift and most likely being more intelligent, he'd still die. Something so powerful that doesn't require five Drakes and coordination to take down the Ley-Guardian is bound to attract the attention of Malygos ...

Tridus: "Something so powerful that doesn't require five Drakes and coordination to take down the Ley-Guardian is bound to attract the attention of Malygos ..." But that's where it gets interesting!

Loken kills Eregos.
Malygos gets involved and kills Loken.
Loken, dying, summons Algalon.

I do believe Malygos now has a bit of a problem. :)

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Features, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Ley-Guardian Eregos vs. Loken


Two Bosses Enter ... but only One Boss Leaves, in WoW.com's series of fantasy death matches. This season's bosses come from the five-man instances of Wrath of the Lich King.

We've witnessed some pretty strange matchups during the first round of the Wrath five-man boss season of Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves. We think the first bracket has successfully set the baseline: it's not who wins or loses – it's how they play the game. You folks out there in the stands have been great. We've evolved beyond lame comments droning on about "X is a boss?!? HAHAHA Y wins, my group beats X every time," to recent battles, with truly captivating scenarios such as Bobobe's ironic twist at the end of last week's Anub'Arak versus Elder Nadox battle.

For the final match of this season's first bracket of battles, we present to you another unusual (even in TBE's terms) scenario featuring two bosses that are probably among players most dreaded bosses: Ley-Guardian Eregos of The Oculus versus Loken from the Halls of Lightning. Yeah, yeah, we know ... the Drakes ... Come on, you didn't really think we were going to perch Loken atop one Super-Drake with all the abilities, did you? It's a fantasy series! Loosen up your deathgrip on those Drake reins, and let's look at this week's ground rules.
  • The Drakes are out. Poof – gone.
  • Assume that Eregos and Loken share similar levels, health pools and comparative overall damage output.
  • Do me a favor and read the previous bullet point again, please?
  • This deathmatch takes place in neutral territory.
  • Ley-Guardian Eregos will be able to summon his Whelps.
  • Gameplay mechanics are significantly different here, since we have no Drakes. Don't worry about what actual players and Drakes might do in the encounter; they're not here.
  • Focus on the three S's: style, story and scale.
Now, we all know who will probably capture the most votes – but without the Drakes and a comparatively level playing field for damage done, are you certain? Join us after the break to cast your vote and tell us how you think the winner pulls it off.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, Lore, Bosses, Two Bosses Enter

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