06Nov

Post-BlizzCon 2017: The Unknown Mysteries of Battle for Azeroth

Undercity

The Battle for Azeroth cinematic shows the Greymane and Anduin’s forces invading The Lordaeron Ruins (Undercity). Based on what Alex implied, and our Jeremy interview — connecting the dots, the Forsaken will be forced to flee, and the Ruins of Lordaeron will be Alliance territory once more.

Gilneas was made uninhabitable with the level of plague contamination used during Cataclysm by the Forsaken. The Ruins of Lordaeron might not be difficult to cleanse in comparison — except maybe the Undercity itself might be shutdown entirely and sealed to the public.

Could the Ruins of Lordaeron become the new Worgen city?

The Ruins of Lordaeron (the castle above the Undercity, that is) is a massive estate, and most of it is still there and you can fly in and explore it. If it was rebuilt by the Worgen, cleansed by druids, and restored to living standards, knowing what Blizzard has done with Dalaran and the city of Suramar — there is much potential there.

Those with sharp eyes might have noticed the Battle for Azeroth cinematic started with a perfect aerial view of the Ruins of Lordaeron (seen below).

 

So let’s put aside just for a second the idea of an Alliance-only Eastern Kingdom might (speculatively) lead Blizzard to set the Ruins of Lordaeron as the new home for the Worgen.

Where would the Forsaken relocate to in the Horde-only Kalimdor?

Kalimdor has 23 zones in total. However, undead do not need lush forests or much sustenance. So that narrows down their living requirements down to a few choices in Kalimdor: Darkshore — with a massive Teldrassil pyre reminding them of their victory there in a kinda gritty land, with sea access for the Forsaken naval fleet.

Desolace has a nice ring to it making a zone nobody really visits anymore a place to build a city in. If you read the DC Comics World of Warcraft: Bloodsworn graphic novel, the Horde conscripted its first ever Centaur as new member of the Horde. With Allied Races now a possibility, and Jeremy confirming in our interview that [that] system was built to be expandable to add new Allied Races in the future — centaurs might be a possible ally, and Desolace might be a candidate for a new Forsaken city after their departure from Undercity.

However, geographically, Desolace is too close to Mulgore, and there already is a portal to Thunder Bluff.

Next candidate for the Forsaken to build a new city is Dustwallow Marsh. Theramore was the first city the Alliance lost in Kalimdor. It is a swamp. It has access to the sea for the Forsaken fleet. Sounds like an appealing spot to build their city, and maybe even a perfect spot for Sylvanas’ valkyr to raise new Forsaken with all those lives lost during Garrosh’s Theramore invasion. Technically, the Ogres of Dustwallow Marsh were also conscripted as members of the Horde as well, which sounds like a potential playable Allied Race in the future. So who knows.

 

Thousand Needles offers a natural protection against Alliance attack with its many needle-like mesas, and its high-cliffs plus a strategic door closing/opening access to the sea might be of interest for the Forsaken naval fleets. It is also a zone rarely visited by high level players, so making a city there would open the flow of players around the area.

Personally, I would favor Theramore for the Forsaken as the top candidate for a new city, but gee — that massive pyre vista in the background from a Forsaken city in Darkshore makes the geeky-me grin for some reason.

 

Silvermoon City

What we know: Alex Afrasiabi coined the term Alliance-only Eastern Kingdoms during the Opening Ceremony.

 

What we would immediately think might happen: Where would the proud Blood Elves sail to make a new city at? Well, there would be a few possible locations. One that would make sense is to be harbored by the Nightborne. After all, they are ancestors from the pre-Sundering era. But if Blizzard wants to keep the Blood Elves in Kalimdor, then I am not completely certain that Azuremyst might be a candidate for a Blood Elf city.

Considering the Night Elves are leaving Kalimdor, that leaves a lot of estate abandoned: Ashenvale, Mount Hyjal, Stonetalon Mountains, and Feralas. Of course, there might be a few Night Elf villages left behind protecting their ancestral lands as the resistance, but not a major presence like a city.

Mount Hyjal sounds appealing because of the Well of Eternity Illidan planted there, but the Blood Elves are no longer addicted to the arcane. They are now Sunwell bearers. Noticeably, there is no access to the sea either for the Blood Elf naval fleet, so I wouldn’t hold my breath with Mount Hyjal being a candidate for a Blood Elf city.

Feralas on the other hand is a lush forest, and access to the sea. A portion of Ashenvale also has access to the sea as well. But it wouldn’t be too far-fetched if the draenei and Blood Elves switched lands: Blood Elves moving to Azuremyst, and Draenei moving to Quel’Thalas.

There is a massive question left in the air, however. What will the Blood Elves do if forced to leave Quel’Thalas in terms of their Sunwell? How do you move the Sunwell to Kalimdor? Or is it possible to grab samples of water from the Sunwell, and create a new Sunwell elsewhere? Thus, leaving the prime Sunwell behind for the Draenei taking over their lands?

Keep in mind all of this is make-believe if all of Eastern Kingdoms became Alliance-only in the future. There is enough seed planted in our minds, to make aggressive, daring, and wild conjectures.

FACTS: There was no indication from Blizzard that Silvermoon City would be attacked by the Alliance in 8.0, but then the “Alliance-only Eastern Kingdoms” meaning feels hollow if the Blood Elves remain in Quel’Thalas. So we’ll have to wait for more details on what’s going on in that case beyond Patch 8.0.

The World of Warcraft Q&A revealed the Blood Elves are staying in Silvermoon City (Quel’Thalas) as the last Horde bastion in the Eastern Kingdoms.

NEXT: BATTLE FOR AZEROTH: MYSTERIES

 

Post-BlizzCon 2017 The Unknown Mysteries of Battle for Azeroth
1. Kalimdor Cities2. Eastern Kingdoms Cities3. Battle for Azeroth: Mysteries4. Battle for Azeroth: End Game

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BlizzCon 2019 Panel Transcripts

 

Tomas Hernandez is owner of Blizzplanet.com since 2003. I post news about World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard Careers, and the Warcraft film. Blizzplanet is a leading fansite covering news about upcoming Blizzard Entertainment licensed products. I also post previews and reviews. I have interviewed book writers and Blizzard game developers. I was previously an employee of the OGaming Network (2003), and IncGamers (2008-2010). I was a guest newsposter for GosuGamers (World of Warcraft) a few years ago and for Diablofans.com (formerly Diablo3.com) ***Fans who would love to watch Blizzard-related panels and appreciate our efforts can support Blizzplanet's patreon in a monthly-basis, or a one-time basis. Our staff are volunteer fans like you. Your donations will help us travel to all the Blizzard events we attend year-round to bring you the latest interview with the developers, photos, and panel videos (where allowed).

7 thoughts on “Post-BlizzCon 2017: The Unknown Mysteries of Battle for Azeroth

  1. I think that my question is if the “EK for alliance, Kalimdor for Horde” thing is meant to be permanent or just a temporary situation.

    In the same way that it feels really unfair for some races to be uprooted from their ancestral homes, perhaps continental hegemony for each faction would be indeed the best way for a lasting truce, if not peace.

    It would be interesting if this happens to be indeed the long term plan, but are they willing to shake up things so much?

    1. Well, to me it would make sense to move all Horde to Kalimdor, and
      all Alliance to Eastern Kingdoms. they have the phasing technology to
      keep the level 1-110 leveling experience intact, and then switch you
      from level 110-120 and beyond into the new status quo using a phased
      version.

      What would make this radical change
      interesting is the introduction of Allied Races. What if you start a
      level 20 Allied Race starting location and leveling experience in the
      Horde-only Kalimdor phased version instead of the old-school starting
      location? That would feel different in a sense, even creating new
      contemporary quests.

      By that I mean this: the old level
      1-90 quests are not contemporary with a Nightborne storyline. I mean,
      could you imagine a level 20 Nightborne starting in Silvermoon City
      reliving the Cataclysm quests, going through the Dark Portal into
      Outland at level 60, then going to Icecrown to kill Arthas the Lich
      King? Sounds Absurd.

      I say — Allied Races should have
      their own unique level 20-120 leveling experience. Or make them just
      start at the lowest level of the expansion which in this case would be
      level 110.

      Starting at level 20 I think is way too
      exagerated to level to 120 to unlock Heritage Armor. It is a terrible
      idea considering everyone wants to unlock at least 3 Allied Races, and
      future ones.

      1. As good as this sounds, even Blizzard’s resources are limited. I would already be happy if the introduction of the allied races makes us really experience the depth of their lore.

      2. Would be cool, yet highly unlikely with the resources that would be spent. That’s the major issue with adding any new races, the leveling experience will always be outdated for them.

        Even with the scaling leveling being present through all the game, it still means that any character has to go “back on time” when they reach 60 to go to Outland or Northrend.

        So yeah, it won’t make any “in game” sense so you gotta see your leveling experience with these new races as non canon, though I do agree with the idea that it would make more narrative sense for the allied races to start at 110, it would give them a very unfair advantage in terms of investment. People would just make allied races to bypass the leveling haha!

        I think we are stuck with that, at best we can have a disclaimer that, IDK, Chromie is sending you back in time so you can experience this world you have been so cut off from, like your whole leveling experience is a Caverns of time instance. Heck, maybe you have Chromie in the “Adventure Guide” explaining this to you.

    2. While we can’t rule it out, hitting the reset button with us being where we were before the
      expansion started sounds cheap. Then again you are right: Having the two sides seperated by so much distance would rob WoW of much of its potential for tension.

      There might be a plot twist like: The Horde retakes the Blackrock Mountain with the surrounding territory, while the Alliance takes Dire Maul.

      1. Yet in a way, having the continents divided itself is a gridlock that makes the tensions everpresent, yes, but unyielding in results and stagnant.

        With one continent per faction, at least each would be able to truly consolidate their power and advance with more stability, which would benefit Azeroth in the long run. This in turn would make any new territory a new scenario for war, which I think could be a good way of preserving the conflict.

        Personally, I would have preferred if both continents had been split in half rather than a continent each. The divide for EK is easier, on the Thandol Span. North for the horde, south for the Alliance.

        For Kalimdor, I would actually have the horde loose Orgrimmar and Durotar, with the divide happening on the scar in the Barrens, folowing west to give Stonetalon to the alliance, and Desolace to the horde. Thunder Bluff becomes the new Horde capital, the orcs resettle on Dustwallow. Mulgore and the revitalized Desolace serve as food suppliers.

  2. Well I think we miss a simple solution regarding where the Forsaken and Night Elves are going to live now: Silvermoon(one half of the city is free for rent) and Azurmyst Isles(a lot of free space). This would give Blizzard a reason to update these places.

    But speaking of these two races we forget there are a lot of minor Horde powers in the Eastern Kingdoms in peril no one asked about. The Renvantusks are probably save, but what about Okril’lon Hold in the Blasted Lands, with the Dark Portal being a major strategic assess? Stonard, the Blackrock clan, the Dragonmaw clan… I can’t see a bright future for them in an Alliance-controlled continent. Oh and let us not forget the Frostwolves. Could Thrall return with a vengeance story?

    My best guess at how it plays out before the next expansion hits:

    Sylvanas’s rule in Undercity is challenged by the Desolate Council, a group of Forsaken seeking deat since they see no reason to go on. At the same time Stromgarde is retaken by Danath Trollbane, with the Worgen making major moves, maybe taking Southshore. Genn is openly vowing to retake Lordaeron. Meanwhile in Silithus the Alliance manages to take a major load of Azerite from the Horde and ships it to Teldrassil. Sylvanas knows the power of this material and leads a naval attack on Darkshore and Teldrassil(bypassing Ashenvale) to take it back. Something happens and the Azerite explodes, setting Teldrassil on fire.

    The Alliance retaliates…

    This would give both factions a reason to fight for, without making one the big bad. Would Sylvanas order the torching of Teldrassil in cold blood, I can’t see the rest of the Horde standing with her.

    The efforts of Horde and Alliance to have Kul’Tiras/Zandalari join them is pretty logical. Who has controle over the sea has the initiative to attack the other continent. With Azshara appearing I guess we will have a major naval battle between the factions in patch 8.1 or so. Suddenly she and her Nagas appear, sinking the majority of both fleets, ensuring she is the queen of the oceans.

    We deal with this, but I hope we don’t kill her. Kezan being just a dungeon is a heavy blow already.

    As for the endgame: With the Naga defeated both factions resume the war. No distractions and no mercy anymore. Every place of major strategic importance is a battlefield. I don’t know where the last raid starts, but having it being Stormwind would make for a nice tribute to Warcraft 1 and the Siege of Orgrimmar. The Horde would win and major lore figures on both sides would die. Before there can be any victory celebration or even a burial of the death though, we see darkness falling as the forces of N’Zoth make their move, attacking the exhausted Horde/Alliance forces.

    As I said, this is only my best guess.

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