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Posts with tag gorehowl

WoW Archivist: The curse of Karazhan

Karazhan Tower
WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

Something has been afoot in Karazhan of late. First, dataminers noticed that Karazhan had been renamed Medivh's Big Birthday Bash on the PTR. In the rechristened raid, objects such as cobwebs and skeletons had disappeared. Then a later build renamed it Karazhan 2: Eclectic Boogaloo. Senior game designer Jonathan Craft tweeted that fellow designer Dave Maldonado was responsible. Maldonado later said that nothing is happening. It turned out to be a test to see if a phased quest could be set there, but sadly it didn't work.

Many players would be excited to return to Karazhan, and it would make sense to do this in Warlords of Draenor. After all, Karazhan is from the same expansion that took us to the shattered remnants of Draenor back in 2007. Hopefully Blizzard will find a way to feature some Karazhan-based content during the next expansion.

Karazhan remains one of Blizzard's most popular raid zones, and for good reason. But did it succeed too well for WoW's own good? Let's look back at what Karazhan offered us in its prime and how it impacted raid design in future expansions.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

What's going on with Karazhan?

It's no secret that I love Karazhan. Making its debut in Burning Crusade, Karazhan was and still is, to me, the perfect raid. The sheer scope of the instance and the variety of bosses within it were more than enough to keep my raid guild at the time happily occupied. But for myself, it wasn't just the raid, it was the story behind it. I spent most of vanilla plaintively wondering when we'd see Medivh's tower open for visitors ... and I wasn't disappointed in the slightest with what we eventually saw inside.

On the 5.4.2 PTR, Karazhan is in the middle of what seems to be not a revamp, but a restoration. Mobs aren't changing, neither are bosses. But the cobwebs, the overturned chairs, the randomly placed skeletons of the dead are all being quietly swept away. One has to wonder ... what's up with that? What's going on with the tower of Karazhan, and why the sudden makeover now? Rather than indulge in yet another speculative edition of Know Your Lore, let's just take a quick look at the possibilities.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore

Phat Loot Phriday: Gorehowl

Throgg sat waiting in Orgrimmar. It had been a long time since the big orc had visited the capital city of his people, so he was understandably nervous. The druid reclined on the floor. A few orcs had commented on Throgg's "kitty," but they all seemed to take the feline at face value.

"Pardon, friend," Throgg said to a nearby officer. "Any idea how long it will be? I don't mean to rush, but I have this friend I left behind ... "

"LOK'TAR!" the orc roared in response. "AKA MA'BLOOD AND GLORY!"

Throgg blinked in response and looked back down at his companion. "I think I know why Garrosh want to see me. Did you know I wield Gorehowl?"

For his part, the druid looked at Throgg with an expression that could be interpreted as something between I don't care, I will destroy all your furnishings and Do continue, I would love to hear about your loot. Throgg chose the latter interpretation.

"I got it from this demon in Kirzhan ... Karastan ... a wizard's tower," Throgg said. "Replaced it in Northrend, but still. I use it for cucumbers and sausage, now. Methinks Garrosh is upset about that."

The door to the waiting room blew open, and Garrosh's secretary appeared. "LOK'TAR LOK OGAR LOK'TAR," the orc explained. "BLOOD AND ASHES AND GLORY. FOR THE HORDE!"

"That means Garrosh is ready to see me now," Throgg translated for the worgen-kitty. "Also, they'd like to know if you want some milk. I'll tell them no."

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Filed under: Phat Loot Phriday

Know Your Lore: 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.

He is the destroyer. Drinker of demon blood, first slave of Mannoroth, he who ushered in the Blood Curse and the bloody haze of rage and battle frenzy it woke in the orcish heart. He was in the vanguard of the army that stormed Shattrath, the last and greatest of the draenei cities, and no axe can be said to have slaughtered more of them. No hand was more stained, not Gorefiend, not Deadeye, not Bladefist. In a sea of names that denote battle hardened warriors, his name stands out.

He is the savior. He is the last survivor leading his people when most of their kind were imprisoned and defeated. He was the one who showed the young Thrall a free orc, taught him their language and pointed him to those who would show him his ultimate destiny. Tripped up by his fury and guilt, twice he stumbled back toward the blood haze that dominated his people, the curse he himself brought upon them. Finally, goaded beyond endurance, it is the same bellicose anger that has granted him his greatest successes and his greatest failure that frees his people.

Grom Hellscream drank the demon Mannoroth's blood and led his people into slavery. Grom Hellscream slew the demon Mannoroth and led his people out of slavery. Few beings can be said to be the best and worst of their people at once -- but then again, few people can say they are the Giant's Heart.

Who was Grommash Hellscream?

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Ask a Lore Nerd: Shared tongues and other oddities


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.

I fulfilled my dork quota in last week's Ask a Lore Nerd, so this week I'll ramble a bit less, and answer some more of the simpler questions we've seen recently. With that said, let's get started with Chris's question...

Why is Gorehowl just an epic weapon? It was claimed to be wielded by Grommosh Hellscream and if so shouldn't the weapon be legendary?

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

Know Your Lore: Grom Hellscream

Illidan, Medivh, Deathwing -- Know Your Lore has been kind of focused on villians so far, with a good reason. Villains are cool. I'd rather have the Burning Legion backing me up than the Cenarion Circle, and drinking with Illidan sounds more fun than with Malfurion. But sometimes there are heroes who are not only good, but also extremely cool. That is the case with this week's Know Your Lore subject, Grom Hellscream.

Who: Grommash Hellscream.

What: Chieftain of the Warsong orcs.

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Filed under: Horde, Orcs, Features, Lore, Know your Lore

Putting an end to the myth of the legendary axe


We're having a lootful Friday around here, so I just want to take a quick second to address something that's been going around ye olde internets for the past few weeks.

Grom Hellscream does not have a legendary axe.

Contrary to popular belief, Grom Hellscream's axe does actually drop in the game, and no, it ain't orange. In fact, the name heard to this point -- Grom'ogh, Edge of Hellscream -- isn't even the moniker of the in-game weapon. Instead, our buddy Grom carried around Gorehowl, a regular old epic axe of pretty decent statistics.

Anyway, just a little bit more loot info for you on a Friday evening. The controversy has been settled, the true identity of the axe revealed, yada yada. Now be sure to let my pally and my shammy roll on it.

Filed under: Items, Lore, Guides

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