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Know Your Lore: Which Horde is Which?

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.

There will be spoilers for Warlords of Draenor in this post

So you may be confused right now. With the soon to come introduction of the Iron Horde, we've entered a situation where we've got several different Hordes. There's the Old Horde, the original Horde that invaded Azeroth from Draenor. There's the New Horde, or Horde 2 if you prefer, the Horde put together by Thrall after he liberated the orc survivors from the Second War, leading them out of the internment camps and to the shores of Kalimdor. Along the way they picked up the tauren and Darkspear trolls as allies, and eventually the Forsaken, blood elves and Bilgewater goblins joined their ranks. This Horde is the Horde most players are still a part of. Meanwhile, at the same time, there was the Dark Horde, consisting of Blackrock orcs under the command of Rend Blackhand and his ultimate master, Nefarian.

During his reign as Warchief of the Horde (the New Horde, to be specific) Garrosh Hellscream recruited both the Blackrock and Dragonmaw orcs to join the Horde. But at the same time, he grew disenchanted with the other races of the Horde - goblins were too greedy, blood elves too mercurial, undead too loyal to Sylvanas and distasteful to his sensibilities, the Darkspear too loyal to their Vol'jin, and the tauren ultimately too bound to their own code of honor. It didn't help that he'd killed Cairne Bloodhoof and further alienated the tauren clan leader Baine, Cairne's son, with his actions. Soon, Garrosh found himself leading a Horde he didn't much trust or care for.

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

WoW Moviewatch: Ulduar Abridged

Whether you've never been to Ulduar but want the Ulduar experience or you have fond memories of raiding the place during Wrath, Ulduar Abridged is your machinima fix. It's not just a rundown off bosses, but a rundown of the conversations you would have had on Vent if you were running Ulduar when it was new. Brought to us by the fine individuals of Slightly Impressive, it's the latest in a series of similar raid videos, including Icecrown Citadel and Siege of Orgrimmar.

So what are you waiting for? Let's get this nostalgia train on the road!
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.


Filed under: Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

The Queue: In Name Only

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Matthew Rossi will be your host today.

Questions will be answered! Misconceptions shall be splintered! A Queue day, a red day, ere the sun rises!

JodySchaeffer asks:
Since this is a different timeline with no impact on our own history, I'm wondering why our characters should even care, story-wise, about these people who are historical characters in name only. That isn't Grom, that isn't Gul'dan, it isn't even really Draenor.

The only redeeming thing I can think of is a Legion invasion at the end of WoD that destroys the fragmented timeline and sets up the next expansion. Have it so we can visit our Garrisons through the Timewalkers so they weren't for nothing.

But yeah. Since they're so big on stressing these AREN'T famous characters from lore, why does it matter who they are at all?

Well, there's several reasons. The first is pragmatic. The Iron Horde is coming through into our world, blowing up our settlements, and making war on us. So we should care about these people because these people are literally trying to murder us. I don't know about you, but I tend to be concerned when people want to kill me.

From another perspective, it's like this - yes, that Grom isn't the Grom who died fighting Mannoroth to lift the blood curse. But he is Grom. He shares many life experiences in common with the Grom we know - he has as much right to be called Grom Hellscream as the other one did. Saying that's not really Gul'dan is foolishness. It is Gul'dan. It's not the Gul'dan whose skull ended up in Felwood, allowing Illidan to consume its power and become a demon. But it is Gul'dan. And the reason we shouldn't just ignore that fact is simple - even though his life has taken a different path than our Gul'dan did, he's still the same evil power hungry maniac, just as the Grom we'll meet in Draenor is still the bloodthirst orc whose howl drove fear into the hearts of others. They're not identical to the people we know, but they are similar, and that's a source of knowledge about them. We'd be fools to not use that knowledge to our own advantage.

Up to you if your character is a fool, of course.

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Filed under: The Queue, Warlords of Draenor

Warlords of Draenor: Garrison basics

If you're venturing into Draenor for the first time, there's no avoiding the new garrison feature: it's at the heart of all of your adventuring into this new world. But before it can become a hub for questing, professions, and missions (more on that later), you'll have to build it.

Fortunately, it's not very hard: as soon as you make your way through Tanaan Jungle, your first task will be establishing a garrison in Shadowmoon Valley (alliance) or Frostfire Ridge (horde).

If you want to know more, we're about to cover the basics of Warlords of Draenor's garrison system. Though no story spoilers follow, if you want to head to Draenor without knowing what comes next, you'll probably want to skip this post.

Now, onward, to Draenor!

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Filed under: WoW Rookie

Know Your Lore: Warlord Grommash Hellscream

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.

Strength personified. That might be the best way to describe Grommash Hellscream, leader of the Warsong clan, trusted friend of Thrall, father of Garrosh Hellscream, and the orc who killed Mannoroth and released the orcish race from their servitude to the Burning Legion. Certainly all of those accomplishments under his belt might make Grommash sound like a shining example of exemplary heroism to some ... but in truth, that's only part of the story.

Still, the tales of his father's heroic death were more than enough to spur Garrosh Hellscream from listless would-be leader of Garadar to Azeroth. They were enough to light a fire that fueled his leadership of the campaign against the Lich King in Northrend. They were more than enough to fill Garrosh's heart with pride at the thought of a Horde war machine, one that he led with steadfast dedication as Warchief. But Garrosh's heart is the heart of a Hellscream, and another look at Grommash Hellscream's past shows that Hellscream's son is very much cut from the same cloth as his father.

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

WoW Moviewatch: War of the Ancients - The Well of Eternity

I am pretty sure that War of the Ancients - The Well of Eternity is going to forever hold the record for the longest machinima we've ever featured on the site. I'm also pretty sure it's going to hold the record for one of the most extraordinary projects we've seen. Youtube user and machinima wizard Bloodlord001 is responsible for this epic saga, a retelling of the first novel in Richard Knaak's War of the Ancients trilogy. Clocking in at a little under two hours of story, this is definitely one of those films you want to sit down and watch -- but it's worth every moment, if you want to see Knaak's novel come to life.

And really, while this is an adaptation of Knaak's story and a good summary of how the first book played out, it's the machinima work that shines above everything else. Zin'Azshari is brought to life in stunning detail, each piece of kaldorei armor and weapons utterly astonishing in their complexity. Every demon, every character from the book is uniquely presented, with plenty of models that look as though they were built from scratch. The list of voice actors for the film should be familiar to anyone with a passing interest in machinima, and they do a wonderful job here.

The only minor complaint -- and it's really minor -- is that the subtitles could have used a pass from an editor. Still, it does very little to detract from what is obviously far more than a project, more like a four year labor of love. I do hope we see a continuation of the story, and the other two novels adapted as well -- hopefully with one monstrous production under his belt, Bloodlord can get the second one out a little faster. Grab some popcorn for this one.

Editor's note: Embedding appears to be malfunctioning at the moment -- click the header image to watch the video in full.


Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

The Queue: Gnomelords of Draenor

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Anne Stickney (@Shadesogrey) is answering all kinds of questions today.

You guys can blame ScottLeyes for this one. It's all his fault.

Bruin asked:

Does Garrosh's Jaw look a little like Deathwing's jaw in the Cinematic? I assume that's the remnants of Y'shaarj?

Nope! The tattoos are a Warsong thing -- his father had them as well. Garrosh had his done in the novel The Shattering, after Thrall appointed him Warchief and left Orgrimmar, just before Cairne confronted him and challenged him to the mak'gora that ended his life. Fun fact: When Cairne threw down and demanded the duel, he punctuated it with a full-out backhand across Garrosh's freshly-tattooed face. Ouch.

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Filed under: The Queue

The Queue: Garrison stables are no joke

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Anne Stickney (@Shadesogrey) is answering all kinds of questions today.

Sometimes I think about how weird it must be to have hooves and ride around on an animal that also has hooves. Imagine if horses had feet like us, only four of them. Wouldn't that weird you out just a little?

Welcome to Saturday. Let's get to the questions.

Jalamenos asked:

If you could choose one minor character currently in WoW to be used in a future patch or expansion and be fully voice cast, who would it be and who would you like to voice him/her?

Lorna Crowley. Bring in Billie Piper and make her a sass monster.

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Filed under: The Queue

The Queue: But we will be conquerors

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Matthew Rossi will be your host today.

I really like that line. That being said I think Grommash looks like Sean Bean with an overbite in this cinematic, so he's doomed.

Also, let me be up front - I predicted October as the latest for this expansion, and I was wrong. It's worth admitting when you're wrong.

DiavoJinx asked:
Question!
Has there been any evidence in Warcraft so far that mages can specifically manipulate magnetism (like Magneto)?
I'm thinking if it's the "Iron Horde", then lots of iron in their weapons & armor along with wood, so we just need some fire mages and some magnetism mages to port in and take care of the whole situation. Shortest expansion yet! ;-)


As far as I can tell, no, we've seen no such mages. Quite frankly, everybody uses weapons and armor made out of magnetic materials, like iron and steel. It's not like it would just be good against the Iron Horde. As to why mages can't do that... maybe they just haven't thought to try yet. Ooh, new level 110 spells!

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Filed under: The Queue, Warlords of Draenor

WoW Moviewatch: Expendable Warlords

While it may look like we've finally seen the new cinematic, Ian Beckman created one that some might feel is far superior. Or, perhaps, at least more expendable. Featuring some of Beckman's incredible vocal and animation skills, this parody brings home all the rock 'em sock 'em bacon you could ever want. The animation is definitely more rusty than Blizzard's trailer, but I think Beckman's parody tells you exactly as much about the plot.
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

The Queue: Beta testing, tanking, and fries


Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Adam Holisky (@adamholisky) will be your host today.

I dig the questions today, let's get down to it.

Zapwidget lamented:

When will people realize that the beta is beta and that the purpose of beta is to test not just for bugs but also player reaction? Why do they assume that things in beta will change if nobody expresses negative opinions? Blizzard is not a psychic entity and is not capable of interpreting silence very well. If they don't hear that people are dissatisfied then they are very unlikely to expend further resources iterating and improving. Beta is not just early access. It's not just a preview of unfinished programming. It's called beta testing, not beta previewing.

And then to complain about people offering opinions about the beta? That goes to show that people will complain about anything.

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Filed under: The Queue

WoW Moviewatch: Murktale

I'm sure something happened after the first 13 seconds of Murktale but darned if I could tell you what. I basically backed up the video a half million times and watched that first quarter minute over and over.

Okay, fine, I watched the whole thing. The punchline is a tiny bit tired, but the overall video was great. Look, it's hard to go wrong with a quicky video featuring murloc jokes. I think someone crooning "in the arms of an angellllll" would have made the video better, though I'm not sure any of us need to hear that song again.

Ultimately, it's a fun little video. I look forward to what might be in store in the future for Azian.
Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.


Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

Know Your Lore: Garrosh, Gul'dan, and Warlords of Draenor

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.

Who is Garrosh Hellscream? And what, exactly, is his game? In the end, what is Garrosh ultimately looking for ... and what will he sacrifice to get it? It's one of those lingering questions from Mists of Pandaria that remains as of yet unanswered, but we're beginning to see the bits and pieces of the story, and we'll see more as Warlords is released and the new expansion's story unfolds. For now though, that question still plagues players -- what is Garrosh after? Why did he spurn the idea of warlocks in Siege of Orgrimmar, going so far as to have them strung up in the streets, yet embrace the methods of the dark shaman?

Garrosh isn't a character that can be easily understood. His motives -- and his morals -- seem to be all over the place, switching from merciful to merciless in an instant. And yet he's not the only piece to this puzzle -- in Warlords of Draenor, Gul'dan is already showing his face as a pretty prominent figure. Obviously Garrosh Hellscream knew of the Legion's evil when he traveled to this alternate Draenor -- he knew of his father's downfall. So why is Gul'dan still alive? Why wouldn't Hellscream, upon traveling to this alternate Draenor so similar to his own, flat out murder Gul'dan on sight and be done with it?

Please note: The following Know Your Lore contains several spoilers for Warlords of Draenor.

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

The Queue: It's the little things

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Anne Stickney (@Shadesogrey) is answering all kinds of questions today.

Some of the most impressive stuff in Warlords so far, to me anyway, are the little things that are likely going to be overlooked by a lot of players. Carefully placed boots next to an unmade bed. A couple of books stacked up, light reading for whoever is staying in the inn. The leg of chicken, or turkey, or ... well, whatever Draenor's animal equivalent happens to be -- and it's got a bite taken out of it. Let's take a bite out of some Warcraft questions.

Bruin asked:

I have a question about avoiding spoilers. I'd like to play the game and be surprised. I ALSO really like the books, and sometimes comics. Should I avoid the Comic that got released until I play WoD?

It depends. The comic itself takes place before the events of Warlords begin, but it involves characters that are seen in Warlords, and why they are the way they are. I wouldn't call it spoiler material, as it isn't giving away anything that we haven't already seen in promotional art or heard about at BlizzCon, but if you're doing your best to avoid absolutely everything related to Warlords, I'd skip the comic for now. I would also avoid Know Your Lore this evening, because I'm going to be talking about the comic in detail.

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Filed under: The Queue

The Queue: We're MC Raiders

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Anne Stickney (@Shadesogrey) is answering all kinds of questions today.

The announcement of 40-man LFR Molten Core has me both excited and a little terrified. It also gave me flashbacks to Illegal Danish and the song that ran over the end credits. If you haven't seen the gloriousness that is Illegal Danish, you should probably go watch that now. While you're doing that, we'll just get to answering some questions.

cromhar asked:

"our final act in fighting the Warlords will be to defeat the Iron Horde utterly" I might be totally wrong here, but didnt Blizz say that the IH would be the "problem" in WoD only for a certain time before the story shifts to something else, like another villain/enemy? I thought I had read this a while ago, but maybe I am wrong?

I don't recall anyone saying that exactly. I do know that I'm of the opinion that the Iron Horde isn't going to be the only big bad we fight on Draenor, and it might not even be the expansion-ending boss, either. There's too much other stuff on Draenor, and we've barely scratched the surface of it all, but we spend this first ramp up in the expansion systematically going through and getting rid of some of the worst of what the Iron Horde has to offer. I don't think we're going to dedicate all of our time to the Iron Horde. But again, that's my opinion, it hasn't been stated anywhere officially.

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Filed under: The Queue

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