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Posts with tag Murozond

Know Your Lore: Warlords, timelines, and the Bronze Dragonflight

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.

Many of the questions that have had players mystified since Warlords of Draenor was introduced last year at BlizzCon surrounded Draenor itself. How did it appear? Why is it different? Why don't the events that occur on Draenor have any kind of bearing on what's going on with Azeroth? If Draenor is an alternate Draenor, is there an alternate Azeroth as well? Does this mean there are duplicate lore characters? Will we see two Thralls, two Velens, two versions of Garrosh? And as the year has slowly marched on, that question has been answered in bits and pieces, but never with enough clarity to really set people's minds at ease.

When the Warlords of Draenor beta was released, it became immediately clear to anyone that knew the history of Warcraft that this Draenor, the one on which we are going to be building garrisons, amassing armies, and defeating the Iron Horde, is not and never was the Draenor we were already familiar with. It's an entirely different planet. We've been using the term "alternate universe" in reference to Draenor because seems the best term to encompass the concept of this strange world. With the release of the short story Hellscream, it has finally been made clear just what is going on with Draenor -- and it has nothing to do with Garrosh's trip, and everything to do with the Bronze Dragonflight.

Please note: The following Know Your Lore contains several spoilers for Warlords of Draenor as well as the short story Hellscream.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: Resurgence of the Infinite Dragonflight

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.

Long ago, the Titans empowered five dragons with unique abilities and powers, entrusting to them the protection of Azeroth itself. While each had their own specialization with its own odd foibles, none were as strange as the task set to Nozdormu. Aman'Thul, Highfather of the Pantheon, entrusted Nozdormu with the task of watching over time -- to guard the myriad paths of time and keep them pure. A strange task, to be certain, and one with a heck of a lot of power involved. To keep Nozdormu from abusing that power or thinking that he answered to no one, he was given the knowledge of the exact moment of his demise.

Yet somewhere in one of those myriad timelines, this apparently wasn't enough. Somewhere, somewhen, Deathwing prevailed and brought about the Hour of Twilight, leaving Nozdormu a haunted, twisted version of his former self -- a version that cared little for the restrictions or rules bestowed by the Titans, and cared much more for preserving his own skin and preventing his own death. The twisted version called himself Murozond, first of the Infinite Dragonflight, intent on bending time and changing events solely for the purpose of evading his inevitable demise. We defeated Murozond in End Time, and prevented the Hour of Twilight from taking place. But have we actually saved Nozdormu? Have we secured time itself?

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore, Warlords of Draenor

Know Your Lore: Wrathion's duty

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.

Wrathion is one of those unique and entertaining characters who appeared out of nowhere and managed a staggering degree of complexity in just a few short years in game. Although he was not introduced by name until the tail end of Cataclysm, his origins began when the expansion revamped level 1-60 content and consequentially introduced a bizarre and touching origin story in the Badlands. It wasn't until the legendary quest chain for rogues that we got a real look at Wrathion, newly hatched and remarkably intelligent for his age.

Once his tasks for rogues were over at the end of the expansion, Wrathion departed -- and then promptly showed up again in Mists of Pandaria, in a far more extensive role that stretched the length of the expansion, and beyond. But one thing has always been incredibly unclear -- exactly what Wrathion is up to, and why he is doing what he's doing. He's given us a reasonable enough answer, but can we really trust the last remaining member of a dragonflight known for lies, deceit, and evil, even if he is supposedly uncorrupted?

Please note: The following column contains spoilers for War Crimes. If you're mid-book, or have yet to read it, you might want to come back when you're finished with it.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore, Warlords of Draenor

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: What Storms May Come

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.

This one isn't your usual Tinfoil Hat edition - it is going to be one of the weirder ones. Why, you may ask? Well, it's because of Heroes of the Storm, the upcoming Blizzard DOTA style game. And specifically, how that game interacts with Warlords of Draenor. You see, I'm starting to believe that our travel to Draenor is only the beginning of a much longer, much stranger trip that will have us dealing with the consequences of actions we undertook long before - a travel through a crisis point of unimaginable, unfathomable extent.

The defeat of Deathwing in our world, the breaking of the future we saw in the End Time instance may have had further reaching consequences than we could have guessed. Our choices were simple - allow ourselves to die at the Destroyer's talons, or fight - but we still saw Nozdormu, the Aspect of Time, charged with maintaining time make choices that seem almost unfathomable. He chose to send us back to ultimately steal the Dragon Soul, to help us use it against Deathwing.

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

Know Your Lore, TFH: The Aspects of 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.

Y'all know the drill here - this is a speculative jam. Nothing in this is to be taken as what Blizzard is actually saying.

In the distant past, Azeroth was formed by the hands of beings potent even beyond gods. These beings, known to us as Titans, have left the evidence of their presence in many ways - huge, magnificent complexes of astonishing construction, races shaped by their will, the prisons that held Yogg-Saron and Y'Shaarj's heart, and much more besides. From the Mogu'shan Vaults to Uldaman, from the fantastic jungles of Un'Goro to the Sholozar Basin, including the magnificent Vale of Eternal Blossoms the Titans left their mark in the very structure of Azeroth.

Recently the black dragon Wrathion consumed the heart of Lei Shen the Thunder King, a mogu warlord empowered by the stolen power and knowledge of Master Ra (known as Ra-Den to them), a Titan Watcher similar to those left behind in Ulduar. When he did that, he spoke the following words: "We have fallen. We must rebuild the Final Titan. Do not forget." I've wondered long and hard what that could mean. But it wasn't until I considered the powers the Titans bestowed upon the five Dragon Aspects so long ago. Their control of life, magic, dreams, the very land beneath our feet and time's ebb and flow was so absolute that it beggars the imagination, and it also asks us a question - could they bestow this power, if they did not have it themselves, and more besides?

We casually discuss the vast oceans of time that separate us from the Titans. Untold tens of thousands of years, perhaps more - indeed, none can say exactly how far in the past the Titans began their ordering of the universe, much less arrived to create Azeroth. Sargeras had already fallen to be the Dark Titan over 25,000 years ago, but how far before that is unknown to us. But it brings a question to mind - how could such powerful entities seemingly vanish? Why have they left their creations to their own devices? Why are emissaries such as Algalon watching over their creation, rather than the Titans themselves? Is it merely that they are so distant from mundane mortal concerns, living on a scale vastly beyond our comprehension?

I submit it is something else entirely. To determine what, we must look at their actions, and the servants they've chosen to enact their will.

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

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: Twists in time

Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition Twists in time
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.

Two weeks ago, we looked briefly at the Timewalkers and the strange goings-on on the Timeless Isle. Since then, players that have been dutifully completing Kairoz's weekly quests have reached the end of the mysterious visions Kairoz has been trying to pinpoint -- with some disturbing results and implications. In fact, the whole mad journey has been a steady trickle of unanswered questions and dizzying scenarios that might or might not be true. Or perhaps they're all true, just in different versions of reality.

And that's the bronze dragonflight in a nutshell. It's a headache-inducing puzzle of events that might have been, have been, never been, and may have meant to be but hadn't, that can't quite be untangled. Led by Nozdormu, the bronze dragonflight's missive has always been to protect and observe the pathways of time. The Titans gifted Nozdormu with the knowledge of when and how he would die as a warning, a lesson -- that no matter how powerful Nozdormu might think he was, he, just like any mortal, would have to answer to time eventually. This was meant to keep the Timeless One in check, an effective plan.

But did it really work?

Today's Know Your Lore is a Tinfoil Hat edition, meaning the following is a look into what has gone before with pure speculation on how it happened. These speculations are merely theories and shouldn't be taken as fact or official lore.

Please note: This post contains spoilers for events on the Timeless Isle.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

What If: Shadows of the Assassin

What If Shadows of the Assassin
When we last left off with the what-if challenges, Rossi wrote up a perfectly delightful idea for the premise of Shandris Feathermoon being a main antagonist for an expansion, then left me with the notorious half-orc assassin Garona Halforcen for my next challenge. One would think it'd be easy enough to build an expansion around someone who makes a habit of stabbing people, but Garona has essentially been a non-entity since we last saw her, briefly, in the Twilight Highlands.

Her absence from the final fight with Cho'gall was noticeable. One would think that she'd be more than happy to pitch in and help defeat the creature that had been controlling her the majority of her life, forcing her to do things that colored her fate in such a way that she's been forced into hiding. Yet ... Garona wasn't there. In fact, she's all but disappeared. Which makes one wonder ... how much of Garona is, in fact, Garona -- and what would she do if given the unique opportunity to change her fate?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore

Two Bosses Enter Season 3 Finale: Murozond is your champion

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In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, bosses, leaders, and powerful figures of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

The votes are tallied and the poll is closed -- Murozond is your Two Bosses Enter Season 3 champion! The maddened aspect took the win over fan favorite Echo of Sylvanas by about 320 votes -- pretty close, all things considered. Murozond emerged as a strong contender early in the voting and never let up, soundly defeating each foe he was paired up against. Congratulations!

Did your horse win the race? Are you outraged that the mere embodiment of twisted time and dark knowledge could lay a hand on even a sliver of fair Sylvanas' soul? Hey, I love Sylvanas too, but lately I've been wondering where the heck her story is going, besides trapped in a dragonshrine in a preventable future. Let's see some movement on the Sylvanas story front.

Who wins? Echo of Sylvanas vs. Murozond
Echo of Sylvanas (End Time)2079 (46.4%)
Murozond (End Time)2401 (53.6%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Season 3 finale, Echo of Sylvanas vs. Murozond

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In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, bosses, leaders, and powerful figures of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

The fans have spoken, and your two finalists are chosen. The Echo of Sylvanas from the End Time dungeon will face off against Murozond, also from the End Time dungeon. I think we can say then that without a doubt, the new 5-man instances that dropped with patch 4.3 were popular enough to spawn some memorable bosses, specifically End Time. Nice job.

Murozond did not squeak by Mannoroth -- he trounced him. Taking 64% of the vote and beating Mannoroth by about a thousand votes, Murozond proved to be the real fan favorite and champion of his brackets. Using the cool hour glass factor as well as great encounter design memories and spectacular moments, the Murozond was raid-worthy in epicness but accessible to the entire World of Warcraft player base. That's an achievement all its own.

The real contest begins now, however, as Murozond and the Echo of Sylvanas go head-to-head, toe-to-toe, in a fan favorite matchup that will rival all previous finales. Rally your troops, because this is going to be down to the final few votes -- I can feel it. If you want to watch either one of these bosses dominate, it's time to vote now.

Who wins? Echo of Sylvanas vs. Murozond
Echo of Sylvanas (End Time)2079 (46.4%)
Murozond (End Time)2401 (53.6%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Murozond vs. Mannoroth

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Your first finals contender for this season of Two Bosses Enter is here! The Echo of Sylvanas summarily defeated the Echo of Baine, crushing the vote and positioning herself for a huge win at the end of the tournament. People just love them some Sylvanas, don't they? What can I say? And, speaking of Echos, if you don't mind, I will begin at the beginning ...

Your second finals contender is about to be crowned. Murozond, twisted and tainted, exists as a separate shadow of his former Aspect, Nozdormu, in every moment. His time has not come -- it came for an eternity before this moment and will come for an eternity after this moment. Mannoroth, destroyer of worlds and the lives existing on each, seeks only destruction of all things standing in the way of total universal domination by the Burning Legion. Two beings built for pure chaos face off this week in the Two Bosses Enter arena! Cast your vote now.

Seriously, cast your vote. The buttons call to you, like the sirens to Odysseus, except that you aren't tied to the mast ... and now you've crashed into Fun Island! Just vote.

Who wins? Murozond vs. Mannoroth
Murozond (End Time)2202 (64.0%)
Mannoroth (Well of Eternity)1241 (36.0%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Mannoroth vs. Lord Godfrey

In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, bosses, leaders, and powerful figures of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

Oh ho ho ho, this promises to be quite the matchup, ladies and gentlemen. Can the pit lord general and his wacky elf sidekick take down gunslinger extraordinaire Lord Godfrey in a duel to the presumable death? I'm excited. Get excited! I've got Mannoroth taking this one in an early and decisive victory. Sorry, Godfrey fans -- I call 'em like I sees 'em.

Last week's matchup was a doozy that took me by surprise. I did not expect a win for Murozond because I thought that Azshara would have a more loyal following. Much like her misguided and tainted Highborne, her followers were not strong or numerous enough to cinch the win. Sorry, lady, you're out.

Now it is time to vote. You heard me -- vote! Who will advance to the next round? Choose! I can't push to any more than I already have.

Who wins? Mannoroth vs. Lord Godfrey
Mannoroth (Well of Eternity)2382 (58.1%)
Lord Godfrey (Shadowfang Keep)1720 (41.9%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Murozond vs. Queen Azshara

In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, bosses, leaders, and powerful figures of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

Another exciting episode of Two Bosses Enter hits you in the face right now with an exciting matchup between the infinite master of time, Murozond, and Queen Azshara, one of the most revered night elves in Azeroth's history. You will get to decide who moves on to the next round by voting for your favorite combatant and discussing the fight in the comments. You're going to have a blast.

The fight last week was a real doozy, wasn't it? The Echo of Sylvanas pulled out a decisive victory over the hordes of Old God fanboys, eager to watch their champion move forward into the tournament as the world goes mad watching. Too bad, since Zon'ozz is out. Better find a new servant of the Old Gods to flip out over.

Who wins? Murozond vs. Queen Azshara
Murozond (End Time)2344 (61.5%)
Queen Azshara (Well of Eternity)1466 (38.5%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Queen Azshara vs. Hagara Stormbinder

In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, bosses, leaders, and powerful figures of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

Archbishop Benedictus, just get out. Leave. I just checked the votes, and you should be ashamed of yourself.

Murozond, the corrupted and tainted aspect of time and leader of the Infinite Dragonflight, utterly stomped Benedictus by over 2,100 votes. Was it because Benedictus was so unpopular or because of an emerging crowd favorite in Murozond? Only time will tell.

This week's matchup features the final raid boss of this season, Hagara Stormbinder, going head-to-head against the Well of Eternity's Queen Azshara. This matchup seems like it will prove to be very interesting, as each encounters' mechanics are so robust and varied. Hagara's environmental attacks and movement will be a big factor when paired against Azshara's adds and puppermaster abilities. The ultimate decision, however, is up to you.

Who wins this week's battle on Two Bosses Enter?

Who wins? Queen Azshara vs. Hagara Stormbinder
Queen Azshara (Well of Eternity)1912 (55.8%)
Hagara Stormbinder (Dragon Soul)1517 (44.2%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Murozond vs. Archbishop Benedictus

In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, bosses, leaders, and powerful figures of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

It is no strange surprise that the Echo of Tyrande would retain the love, energy, and passion her fans bestow upon the night elf priestess, even here at the End Time, when Deathwing has taken what he felt was rightfully his. Wait. What? Tyrande lost? To Warlord Zon'ozz? By 43 votes?!

We'll get to this hilarious (to me, anyway) upset in a little bit. There's another important matter to discuss, which is that we have two brand new competitors on Two Bosses Enter and what seems to be an epic match up in the works.

Murozond, the twisted form of the aspect Nozdormu, has manifested himself in the End Time, ready to end all daring time travelers' adventures. As time itself bends around his gargantuan form, only the use of a magic hourglass can give even the most stalwart heroes hope of besting the great infinite. Up against Murozond is a fallen hero who wields the power of the Light unlike any other power on Azeroth. Once the leader of the Church of the Holy Light, now Archbishop Benedictus reigns as the Twilight Father, assisting Deathwing in ending all of our puny existences.

Who wins, friends? Does the great infinite dragon best one of the most powerful wielders of holy and shadow magic? You decide!

Who wins? Murozond vs. Archbishop Benedictus?
Murozond (End Time)2943 (77.4%)
Archbishop Benedictus (Hour of Twilight)858 (22.6%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Know Your Lore: Cataclysm for Dummies, Act II

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.

So, Act I of our Cataclysm for Dummies guide went over the basics of Cataclysm -- how it came to be, just who that Deathwing guy is, anyway, and why he's so annoyed with the world in general. We also found out why we're going to all those new level 80 to 85 zones and, more importantly, why we're wandering around in three different raids in three completely different locations around the world. If you made it through the basics, congratulations! You're caught up through patch 4.0.

But we're in patch 4.3, aren't we? And you've probably still got questions. Questions like: What's up with the troll dungeons -- didn't we kill those guys already? And why did we have to go fight Ragnaros again? Why is Thrall friendly as all get-out with the Dragon Aspects? Why do we have to do all this silly time travel? The good news is, by the time you're done reading this guide, you'll totally understand what Cataclysm is all about.

Please note: There are spoilers here for the novel Thrall: Twilight of the Aspects. If you're still planning on reading it, you may want to do so before you hit this recap.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

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