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Posts with tag Sunreavers

Know Your Lore: Aethas Sunreaver and the founding of the Sunreaver Onslaught

Know Your Lore Aethas Sunreaver and the founding of the Sunreaver Onslaught
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.

Before the Sunreavers, there was Aethas Sunreaver, Archmage of the Kirin Tor. Born of Silvermoon, survivor of the Scourge and Burning Legion assaults on Silvermoon and Dalaran, Aethas Sunreaver ushered in a new age of cooperation and worked to restore the alliance between Quel'Thalas and Dalaran, but in the end, he failed to preserve the neutrality of the Kirin Tor and saw himself and his followers either driven out of Dalaran or imprisoned in the Violet Hold ... the very same prison that the fallen Sindorei prince Kael'Thas once languished within, waiting for death at the hands of Garithos and his human soldiers.

Aethas Sunreaver has always had to walk a difficult line, and it has cost him dearly. It was Aethas who cast the deciding vote that led to Dalaran supporting Theramore as Garrosh Hellscream's forces marched against Jaina Proudmoore's city. It was also Aethas, alongside Rhonin, who suggested that Thalen Songweaver assist in the defense of Theramore, only for Thalen to betray the city to the Horde. After the destruction of Theramore and the death of Rhonin, Aethas even supported Jaina's rise to leadership of the Kirin Tor.

In the end, however, it made no difference. That narrow line Sunreaver sought to walk grew ever thinner, until finally it snapped. Now the Sunreavers are bereft of their home, and forced to rely on the very Horde that they were beginning to view skeptically. Here is how the group the Horde will fight for in Patch 5.2 came to be.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Know your Lore, Mists of Pandaria

Know Your Lore: Jaina Proudmoore and the Kirin Tor

Know Your Lore Jaina Proudmoore and the Kirin Tor SUN
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.

For most players, the Kirin Tor are simply one of many factions available during Wrath of the Lich King. They ran the city of Dalaran, once located just north of the Hillsbrad Foothills, then later relocated to Northrend. In Wrath, players both Alliance and Horde could earn reputation with the Kirin Tor -- the Kirin Tor didn't have a faction bias. They were quite happily a neutral organization, far more interested in matters of magic and learning than any political matters.

But there is far more to the story of the Kirin Tor, and to the city-state of Dalaran. And now that the Kirin Tor has a new leader, it's taking those first few steps away from neutrality and into alignment. Because of this, the Kirin Tor has stepped into a dangerous new light, one with some ethical questions that are far, far more political than one would expect from a collection of mages and intellectuals united under one banner.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: The lore so far -- leading into patch 5.2

Know Your Lore The lore so far  leading into patch 52 SUN
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.

Patch 5.2 is almost here, bringing new stories and development to Mists of Pandaria. The story presentation in Mists so far has been a vast, vast improvement on the convoluted storylines in Cataclysm. While Cataclysm left many players wondering what, exactly, was going on, Mists has been by and large a seamless storytelling experience integrated into questing, raids, dungeons, scenarios and daily quests.

But not everyone participates in everything. Sometimes all you want to do is raid or PvP -- but you want to know the story, too. If you've been looking for details on lore you may have missed, lore that is important as we move to patch 5.2, we've got you covered. Don't worry, there are no patch 5.2 spoilers in here. But there are plenty for everything that's happened in 5.0 and 5.1, so reader beware.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Patch 5.2 PTR: The return of the unlockable Isle

Patch 52 PTR The return of the unlockable Isle
For a brief moment in time, it looked as though the Krasarang Wilds in patch 5.1 were going to be a return, albeit a slightly tweaked one, to the days of Halaa in Burning Crusade. This ended up very much not being the case, but the area still acted somewhat like a fond reminder of the days of open-world PvP. However, patch 5.2 seems to be bringing back yet more of that Burning Crusade nostalgia with the Isle of Thunder -- an island that contains elements that will be unlocked over time.

Sounds suspiciously like the Isle of Quel'Danas, doesn't it? Well, there are a few notable changes to the dynamic. Because the Horde and Alliance are working separately this time, instead of united under the banner of the Shattered Sun Offensive, each faction gets their own progress bar towards unlocking goals. You can see a glimpse of the progress bar above. As players complete daily quests and objectives, the bar will fill up. Once it's full, another section of the Isle will unlock for players to explore.

Blizzard recently released an Under Development guide to patch 5.2 that clarifies this concept a little further.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items

Patch 5.2 PTR: Introduction to Thunder Isle

Patch 52 PTR Introduction to Thunder Isle
With patch 5.2 slowly getting closer to a release on live servers, a minor quest has been added for both factions to help send players to the Isle of the Thunder King. You'll see a quest discovery on the side where you'll be summoned.

Your help is needed.

Warning: Spoilers for patch 5.2 content incoming! Don't hit the link if you don't want to know what happens or why the Alliance and Horde are here!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

Know Your Lore: Hands drenched in blood

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 Sin'dorei have been a presence in WoW since The Burning Crusade -- and surprisingly enough, as members of the Horde rather than members of the Alliance. This turnaround in events was largely due to the treatment of the blood elves by the Alliance during Warcraft III. Kael'thas Sunstrider watched as his people were slaughtered by the Scourge, and set out to lend a helping hand to his supposed allies, hoping that they would lend a hand in return. However, he was sent to help Garithos, a man who was -- let's face it -- incredibly racist.

And in the face of that not-quite-blatant racism, Kael'thas turned to the only people offering any sort of real alliance; the naga. While Vashj and company helped Kael'thas far more than any of his supposed Alliance allies, Garithos was happy to find an excuse to condemn the leader of the sin'dorei, and had him imprisoned in Dalaran for his supposed treasonous actions. It was this waterfall effect that eventually led to the sin'dorei's withdrawal from the Alliance, and into the arms of the Horde.

Which makes the events of patch 5.1 all the more ironically interesting ... because it's happening all over again, but wearing a slightly different face.

Please note: This Know Your Lore contains spoilers for Tides of War as well as patch 5.1 content from both Operation: Shieldwall and the Dominance Offensive. If you have yet to complete these stories, you may want to veer away.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Two Bosses Enter: Ishanah vs. Brann Bronzebeard

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.

To the cheers of a roaring crowd, Archmage Aethas Sunreaver stands triumphant against the noble taunka leader Roanauk Icemist. No amount of prayer and reverence to the elements could stem the tide of the arcane powers of the Archmage. What makes me happy is that we will have a blood elf in the semi-final matchups, a situation that I would not have expected to happen this go around.

Our featured matchup this week pits two first-round winners against each other in the first semi-final bout in the Two Bosses Enter exhibition season. From her high seat of power atop Aldor Rise, High Priestess Ishanah commands the gifts bestowed upon her by her naaru allies. From the depths under a forgotten tomb, Brann Bronzebeard lurks in musty corridors, searching for long-lost artifacts. Who is advancing to the next round of Two Bosses Enter?

Who wins? Ishanah vs. Brann Bronzebeard
Ishanah (The Aldor)783 (24.8%)
Brann Bronzebeard (The Explorer\'s League)2374 (75.2%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Two Bosses Enter: Aethas Sunreaver vs. Roanauk Icemist

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.

In last week's thrilling episode of Two Bosses Enter, Scryer head honcho Voren'thal the Seer went head-to-head against Yorg Stormheart, king of the Frostborn dwarves. Vorenthal's magister abilities were not match for the dwarven mountain king and his crazy hammer of jormungar bashing. Yorg Stormheart, also known as Muradin Bronzebeard, easily trounced this round, giving the dwarf a bona fide win.

This week's matchup signals the end of the first round of exhibition season one with an all-Horde fight between Archmage Aethas Sunreaver of the Sunreaver faction versus Roanauk Icemist, proud taunka chieftain of the Dragonblight. Aethas' leadership, vigilence, and savvy goes up against the brute strength and cunning of an elder taunka warrior. Only you readers have the power to decide who goes on to the next round.

Vote now -- the fate of the universe depends on your action.

Who wins? Archmage Aethas Sunreaver vs. Roanauk Icemist
Archmage Aethas Sunreaver (The Sunreavers)1565 (55.4%)
Roanauk Icemist (The Taunka)1261 (44.6%)

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Filed under: Two Bosses Enter

Guest Post: Three fresh ideas for world PvP events

This article has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW.com.

Of all the PvP events I've participated in over the years, the battle for Halaa in Nagrand always sticks out in my mind as one of the best-executed examples of world PvP that the World of Warcraft has ever produced. The battle for Halaa brought together several areas of warfare in perfect harmony.

  • The element of surprise The battle for Halaa took place at any time. Whenever the opposite faction felt like taking control of the city, they could form a raid and start bombing. It left the controlling faction scrambling to assemble a defense when the words "Halaa is under attack!" popped up on their screens.
  • Aerial assault Players had to activate one of four wyvern stations and fly over the city of Halaa to drop bombs, causing massive amounts of damage. Until the defenses were weakened, players could not successfully enter the city.
  • Sabotage While enemy players were taking to the skies, one of the keys to success was to destroy the activated wyvern stations to prevent those enemy players from immediately taking off for another bombing run.
  • Siege warfare Once the city's defenses were eliminated, the conquering force moved into the city center and held the city captive. Either the defending faction would break the siege and regain control of the city or it would be lost to the conquering heroes.
  • Spoils of war Defeating your enemy within the boundaries of Halaa yielded you a Halaa Battle Token. Once you controlled Halaa, those tokens could be spent on various rewards, including the coveted Dark War Talbuk.

With new expansions come new territories to explore and conquer. Sadly, Nagrand and the war-torn city of Halaa fell to the wayside in favor of Wintergrasp once Wrath of the Lich King was released. So what does a player who is hungry for world PvP do now? If you have some friends and are will to do a little organizing and promoting, here are three new ideas to spring on your server.

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Filed under: PvP, Guest Posts

Know Your Lore: Current Horde politics -- the Blood Elves

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.

Before I begin, I'd like to thank all of the people that commented on the last post I made that covered orc politics. Apparently orcs are a hot topic of conversation, and while I didn't respond to everyone, I did read through everything said. I do have a couple of points to address, however. First, yes, I am aware that orcs are not all brute-minded savages. There's a lot more to orcs than simple savagery; however, that savagery is something that is a basic part of what makes an orc ... orcish. It's an innate part of being an orc. Thrall seems to lack that savagery for the most part and almost seems to want to cull it from orc society in favor of a more gentle and diplomatic disposition. Garrosh, on the other hand, embraces that savagery to an alarming degree. That's where the conflict between the two of them rests. One has what the other does not. Both are extreme cases in either direction.

Second, evoking the name Garrosh Hellscream sets people off. I'm not quite sure what to make of this, but I'd have to say it's a telling statement to the storytelling department that Garrosh, regardless of how much or how little he's been developed, is provoking this kind of reaction from players. Given that most writers like to evoke some sort of emotion in their readers, I can only imagine they are secretly pleased with the outrage. Right, moving on!

The blood elves, or sin'dorei as they've taken to calling themselves, have been a largely quiet presence in Wrath of the Lich King. Given this, they may seem like an odd choice to cover. Why bother talking about a race that hasn't done much to speak of since the days of Burning Crusade? Well... that's sort of the point. While the orcs, trolls, and tauren were natural additions, and the forsaken a little different but accepted at large, the blood elves were a very odd choice for an ally to many Horde players, and through the course of Burning Crusade, there was very little light shed on what made these creatures a valuable ally to the Horde because a large amount of blood elf history stemmed from events that happened prior to World of Warcraft.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: Quel'delar, the Sister Blade


Welcome back to Know Your Lore, WoW.com's column about the story behind the game we all play.

A featured questline in Patch 3.3, the story of Quel'delar is available to any player who attains the Battered Hilt, which can drop from any mob in the Icecrown Citadel 5-man dungeons. But what's the story behind this ancient and powerful weapon?

Long ago, the night elves and the five Dragonflights worked together with great ceremony to forge a set of incredibly powerful prismatic swords, intended to be the first line of defense against any evil that would challenge the races of Azeroth: Quel'serrar, the High Blade, and Quel'delar, the Sister Blade.

Quel'serrar was gifted to the night elves, but ultimately nearly destroyed. For thousands of years it remained partially intact with the Shen'dralar of Eldre'thalas, who anticipated that one day it'd be possible to reforge the blade. Only recently did this occur, with heroes reforging the blade in the flames and black heart of Onyxia, broodmother of the Black Dragonflight. The blade's triumphant return to its full glory brought great joy to the night elves, who thought the blade lost forever.

Its sister blade, however, followed a different path.

This writeup contains spoilers from the Quel'delar questline and should be avoided if you want to be surprised when Patch 3.3 launches.

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Filed under: Know your Lore

Have we already seen future mounts?


One of the things I never forgot in the run-up to patch 2.3 was seeing the photo above from MMO Champion. This was before the Cenarion War Hippogryph went live, and it was the faction's new (albeit expensive) reward for reaching exalted. Boubouille, as so often happens, datamined a bit more than what Blizzard actually permitted to go live, and the skin at the top left was what wound up being the Cenarion Expedition's flying mount. Sprinting for the CE quartermaster when the patch hit and discovering that that was the only model available (and that it couldn't walk) was a bit of a let-down, to the point where I decided to wait on buying the mount in the forlorn hopes that the other mount colors and animations would go live. Quoth the female Tauren, moo hoo hoo.

Since then it's become apparent that the hippogryph at top right became the Argent Hippogryph (score!) and the one at bottom left is now the Silver Covenant Hippogryph. That some of the Tournament daily quests award Silver Covenant/Sunreaver reputation makes me suspicious that the hippogryph and Sunreaver dragonhawk are eventually going to be rep mounts. That still leaves two hippogryph skins "left over," and you've got wonder if they're going into the game -- and if so, in what capacity. EIther way, there aren't words to describe my happiness at not being consigned to the ugliness of a wyvern (the airborne version of Tauren cat form) forever. I'll grant that my main is a Druid so I had a ready escape anyway (and I thank thee daily, Blizzard, for thy boon of total win in the guise of swift flight form), but sometimes a girl likes options.

Filed under: Odds and ends, Mounts

Believe it or Don't: Patch 3.1 notes leaked? [Updated]

Edit: Just in case some of you have any lingering doubts, yes, these are fake. Aurelius of Forlorn Legacy on Windrunner-US has fessed up as the creator. Most of us saw this coming, of course, but the patch notes are at least fun to pick apart and tease. Regardless, when the real 3.1 notes come out, we'll have them here on WoW Insider, so stay tuned.

So a few minutes ago, a reader by the name of Mike -- if that is his real name -- sent us, without links or other proof, a copy of what he says are the official patch notes for 3.1 from an early internal build. So we've now been having a pretty robust discussion here at WoW Insider HQ over whether they're legit or not.

Me, I'm not so sure. The Hunter and Death Knight changes are a little overpowered (Don't get me wrong, I'd love the changes, I just recognize they're probably a bit on the overpowered side), and the whole Ruby Sanctum thing seems out of left field when the dungeon focus is supposed to be Ulduar.

On the other side, Adam is pretty insistent that these changes could just be an earlier test build that will get nerfed down, and the class changes are no worse than, say, patch 2.1 anyway. Alex and Matt Rossi are leaning toward fake too. So in the end, we just decided we better post these and let you judge for yourself. I'd recommend taking them with a big grain of salt myself, but read up after the break and let us know what you think.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Wrath of the Lich King, Rumors

Winds of the North achievement getting fixed

When you log in the day after patch 3.0.8 goes live, odds are that if you've hit 80, you'll be picking up a relatively free achievement. Winds of the North is an achievement that's been more or less impossible to get since Wrath was released -- it requires you to get Exalted with all three of the "starter" reputations for your faction, depending on whether you're Horde or Alliance. But while it's relatively easy to get Exalted with the overall reputaiton for your faction (Horde Expedition or Alliance Vanguard), it's very tough to get Exalted with the reputations within that faction (Explorer's League, Valiance Expedition, Frostborn and the Silver Covenant for the Alliance, and Hand of Vengeance, Taunka, Warsong Offensive and the Sunreavers for the Horde -- whew). There are almost no daily quests for any of those factions, and even just doing all of the quests is designed to get you Exalted with the major faction, not the minor ones.

Patch 3.0.8 will fix this, and only require you to get Exalted with the overall faction. Which you probably already are, since if you don't wear a Champion tabard during the endgame instances, you'll instead earn rep with the starter reputation for your faction. (Not to mention that even before you get there, the mini-factions all add up to the major faction, so if you get Revered with two of the mini-factions, you'll be Exalted with the overall faction.) Got all that? In short, Blizzard built an achievement into the game without realizing how hard it really was to get. And in the next patch, they're going to change it so that even if you haven't been paying attentention, you've probably already gotten it. So enjoy the free points.

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Factions, Wrath of the Lich King

Ask a Lore Nerd: Demons rule, naga drool


Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, where each week blogger and columnist Alex Ziebart answers your questions about the lore and history of the World of Warcraft. Ask your questions in the comments section below, and we'll try to answer it in a future edition.

Just as a warning, today's Ask a Lore Nerd has a couple of spoilers for Wrath content. At this point, I assume that light Northrend spoilers isn't going to scare people off, but I figure I should mention it anyway. It's nothing major, so you won't ruin your experience by reading it anyway. Let's dig in!

Tarean
asked...

Blizzard's said that there's enough material for plenty of more expansions after Wrath of the Lich King, and there's plenty of possibilities, but what expansion should come next lore-wise?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Wrath of the Lich King, Ask a Lore Nerd

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