Lore of Warcraft (part 1) – The Old Gods
(source: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/media/wallpapers/other?view=story-of-wow-warcraft1 ) Since I saw the lore of other games up on imgur recently, I thought I’d share what I know about the Warcraft universe. While Warcraft started as a simple real-time strategy game with very little story beyond “orcs are trying to kill you and break your stuff”, it has since evolved into something much more in-depth, especially when it became a MMORPG. Rather than start its history when Warcraft 1 takes place, let’s start with the very beginning- the formation of the world, untold eons ago.
The Old Gods
(source unknown) Before the world began, there was chaos. Unadulterated madness and disorder was all that populated the inky blackness of the Great Dark (i.e. outer space). Amongst that darkness were the Old Gods, ever warring with one another. Chief amongst them were C’thun (right), Yogg-Saron (left), Y’shaarj, N’zoth, and a possible other, yet-unnamed Old God. It’s undetermined whether the world of Azeroth formed around them or if they found it drifting in the cosmos and latched onto it like a parasite, but regardless, they infested the it like an incurable tumor. They pitted the elements of the world against one another for the sake of havoc and woe.
The Elemental Lords
(source: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/media/wallpapers/patch?view=rage-of-the-firelands ) These primordial beings stand as the incarnations of the elements, and in ancient days they warred against one another at the behest of the Old Gods that corrupted and controlled them. -Ragnaros the Firelord (pictured above). His rage was unquenchable, and his fury could boil seas. Arguably the most powerful of the four. -Al’akir the Windlord. Sovereign ruler of the skies, the tempests were his to command to strike with buffeting gales and blasts of lightning. -Therazane the Earthmother. Once kind-hearted and the most sympathetic to the plight of lesser creatures, she has since grown bitter and jaded by her woes. Despite this, she freed herself from the Old Gods corruption, if she even gave into it at all. -Neptulon the Tidehunter. He who commands the seas. With his trident, he could have the waters of the world rise up and consume the land, drowning mortal life. Like Therazane, he either escaped or resisted Old God corruption.
(source: Warcraft Saga Comic, illustrated by Alex Horley http://www.alexhorleyart.com/wow_comic_book_art.html ) With powers and knowledge beyond the comprehension of mortal minds, the Titans were cosmic wanderers that devoted themselves to achieving order in an otherwise chaotic universe. From their forges they birthed stars, and shaped planets to their whim. Even the power to create life was within their grasp. They were as gods, though they did not accept the mantle of deities- they saw themselves as mere servants to the greater power of order. The Titans happened upon Azeroth and saw that it was infested- an infestation that, if left unchecked, could threaten to spill forth from that world and spread across the stars, undoing their untold eons of work. The choice was clear. The Old Gods had to be eradicated. The Titans warred against the Old Gods and their elemental servants, but one by one, they subdued each of the Elemental Lords and trapped them in the Elemental Planes, away from Azeroth. Their influence would be greatly lessened, and the Titans were free to focus their efforts on the destruction of the Old Gods themselves.
The Slaying of Y’shaarj
(source: in-game screenshot) The goal was clear- the Old Gods had to be destroyed. In this, the Titans met with mixed success. They successfully struck down Y’shaarj (depicted above), but killing the creature only unleashed further corruption and destruction onto the land. The last breaths of Y’shaarj’s seven heads became creatures in their own right, and his black heart continued to beat. It was discovered that the Old Gods had formed a symbiotic relationship with the world itself, and were the Titans to destroy them utterly, the world would be destroyed with it. They chose the merciful alternative.
The Prisons of the Old Gods
(source: http://breathing2004.deviantart.com/art/fallen-Ulduar-133407580 ) Built in the corners of the world, the Titans constructed labyrinthine cities for the sole purpose of containing the Old Gods until the end of time. In the north, they built Ulduar to guard Yogg-Saron. To the south-west, there was Ahn’qiraj to guard C’thun. To the south, they built Mogu’shan Palace to guard the still-beating heart of Y’shaarj. The location of N’zoth’s prison is unknown, though it is rumored to have been at the bottom of the sea.
Founding of the Dragonflights
(source: Glenn Rane http://www.glennrane.com/ ) While the Titans’ creations were many, none were truly creatures of the world of Azeroth. In the northern reaches of the world, they observed the protodrakes and deemed them to be worthy after five in particular dispatched the colossal protodrake tyrant, Galakrond. The Titans uplifted and evolved them, and granted them incredible power unmatched by mortals. The eldest and wisest was Alexstrasza the Lifebinder, Aspect of Life and leader of the Red Dragonflight. She was empowered by the Titan Eonar, given mastery over life itself. Every life was precious to the Dragonqueen, yet she understood that sacrifice must sometimes be made to preserve it. It is such that the fire-breath of the Red Flight burns away impurity so new life can grow. Ysera the Dreamer, Aspect of Nature and leader of the Green Dragonflight, was given a similar gift as her red sister. Eonar granted her mastery over the realm known as the Emerald Dream, and through it, nature itself. The Emerald Dream was created by the Titans as something of a natural “blueprint” to rebuild the world from should the unthinkable occur. As such, green dragons could command flora and fauna alike. Malygos the Spellweaver, Aspect of Magic and leader of the Blue Dragonflight, was perhaps the cleverest of his kind. For his cunning, he was chosen to guard over Azeroth’s magic by the Titan Norgannon, protecting the ley lines so mages could not disrupt the Titans’ plans. Ley lines are the invisible veins of the world, magic flowing through them like precious lifeblood. Nozdormu the Timeless, Aspect of Time and leader of the Bronze Dragonflight, was given perhaps the most crucial task. Empowered by Aman’thul, the Highfather of the Pantheon, Nozdormu was given the gift to see and move through time itself. He was able to pick apart the strands of infinite probability and discern the most likely futures as well as delve into the past. Bronze dragons would come to police the passage of time, guarding it from renegade mages and servants of the Old Gods. Finally, there was Neltharion the Earthwarder, Aspect of Earth and leader of the Black Dragonflight. He came to be the physically mightiest of dragons, empowered by the Titan Khaz’goroth. His task was to guard the deep places of the world, lest the prisons of the Old Gods grow unstable. However, his proximity to the Old Gods allowed them to slowly drive him mad over the millenia. He would later betray the other Aspects and be known as Deathwing the Destroyer.
(source: http://gooloo0-o.deviantart.com/art/WOW-Alexstrasza-185428682 ) Hope you enjoyed reading! Edit: For some reason, imgur keeps clearing the description of the Dragonflights bit. Wrote it for the third time- and I have learned my lesson. I’m backing all the text up so I don’t have to do it again. Here’s Alexstrasza the Dragonqueen in her elven form. (Dragons can take the form of mortals.) Part 2 (Burning Legion + Troll Empires): http://imgur.com/gallery/whoHJ Part 3 (Trolls, Elves, and Demons): http://imgur.com/gallery/QUpoK Part 4 (Races of the Titans): http://imgur.com/gallery/UvvmJ Part 5 (Pandaria): http://imgur.com/gallery/vUSnU/ Part 6 (Highborne, Humans, and Hammers): http://imgur.com/gallery/kZWT2 Part 7 (Wars of Kalimdor): http://imgur.com/gallery/KOKOx Part 8 (The Orcish Horde): http://imgur.com/gallery/6chgJ Part 9 (Council of Tirisfal): http://imgur.com/gallery/snvt3 Part 10 (The First War): http://imgur.com/gallery/B3ARm