One of the reasons I went with an orc for my main this expansion was that I wanted to play someone I could believe would do
some of the quests I was being asked to do, but upon reflection I started to wonder if I'd shortened myself out of some interesting experiences. Sure, it's fairly easy for me to believe an orc warrior would follow Garrosh's lead, but when I play my tauren I start to consider all he's seen in his time in the game -- he's been an active part of the Horde since Thrall first sent people into Blackrock Mountain to take out Dagan Thaurissan. He's fought across alien landscapes, taken on the burden of fighting the walking dead in Northrend, and stood up to the Twilight's Hammer and the end of the world. In essence, his relationship with his duties and responsibilities is more interesting
than my orc, because unlike his current faction leader Baine Bloodhoof, my tauren has seen
the Horde war machine in action. He's been
that war machine, the very tip of Garrosh's spear, in the Twilight Highlands.
When looking at the quests I've done since arriving in Pandaria, one of the things that interested me is the idea of stewardship, of responsibility to the land. The pandaren are a noble people in many ways, but I could easily imagine a tauren finding their stewardship of the land wanting. Save for the Shado-Pan none of them really seem invested in the land's welfare or its defense. Keeping in mind that tauren are the survivors of a generational war with the centaur, who stole their lands and murdered them wholesale, I looked at the lands of Pandaria with his eyes and I saw the yaungol invading and I shuddered. Here we have a clear cousin people to my own, and here they are, invading and destroying, tauren become
centaur, and suddenly it was all too easy to justify following Garrosh and his orders. The pandaren clearly can't hold this land, can't defend it, and whatever else the Horde might be it cannot be said that it isn't strong. The rise of the Thunder King in patch 5.2 only serves as confirmation that it falls to the Horde to defend Pandaria.
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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Mists of Pandaria