All the six videos of the “Burdens of Shaohao” animated dramatic short series are now available. Watch the video playlist to run all video sequences together.
The final part reveals the origin of the Mists of Pandaria. Still a bit shrouded in mystery as to what the process was, but at least fans will find something more solid than what we have seen in-game.
Some of the lore we have read in the Scrolls concerning the Burdens of Shaohao were heavily changed, but the core of the legend remained. So far the short series has been watched over 500,000 times collectively.
The art style is asian-influenced, there is no real animation of the characters. More like still images given some inertia and momentum to mimic animation. Things like the grass, petals, wind, and other objects move freely while the main character remains still, in the same position.
The videos have sound effects and voice over to spice up the characterization of Shaohao and his inner turmoils as the last emperor of Pandaria facing a prophecy too terrible to witness — the first invasion of the Burning Legion was nigh upon the world 10,000 years ago. Shaohao sought a way to spare his people from the coming Sundering that would no doubt sunder his people beneath the waves into oblivion.
I have seen that sort of partial animation before in old japanese animations when I was a kid, and the technique is still used in modern times by Marvel Comics’ website to announce upcoming major events as teasers.
Many fans have had great feedback about Blizzard Entertainment’s Burdens of Shaohao dramatic short. Hopefully, the big kahunas above will approve to develop more of these to highlight special moments in Warcraft’s rich history.