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  #576  
Old 01-14-2014, 10:27 AM
Valtheria Valtheria is offline

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Good to be back, SoL. Need to leave soon, making this "quick".

I feel that what's wrong with the Horde story isn't just that they've been hit with the villain bat, it's that every other playable race on Azeroth is ridiculously, idealistically good and innocent of wrongdoing when compared to them except the Forsaken (whose capital was described as a "bastion of evil" on their official website) and the goblins (who are basically Ferengi).

It's only natural that we can see the orcs as bad because the orcs, in a more complex story, would easily be considered morally dark grey. The most "human" characters in Warcraft at the moment are the blood elves, who deal with loss, pain, grief, and mistakes in fairly believable ways.

Lor'themar Theron, for example, is a very human character with much more believable flaws than, say, Varian Wrynn, whose flaws vanish in a way that - even with explanation - seems forced and awkward. Lor'themar made difficult choices, was forced into no-win situations, and occasionally had to do what he knew went against his ethical standards for the good of his people.

Lor'themar has shown that he can be brutal and bloodthirsty as much as he can be affable and kind. He can make a bad judgement call and question the actions he's taken in the past. He can sometimes let prejudice or paranoia get in the way of what is best for his people (see Zul'Aman). He can make a foolish mistake due to pride (see Quel'Delar for anyone but blood elves).

Moreover, the orcs, Forsaken, and Bilgewater Cartel are literally the only creatures on Azeroth whose governments are actively making the planet worse. The humans, night elves, gnomes, dwarves (now even the dark irons), draenei, worgen, tauren, Darkspear trolls, blood elves (after TBC), and pandaren as races are almost never painted in a grey light - they are morally upstanding to a much greater degree than the orcs.

In particular, the humans don't act like humans as we understand them on Earth; they don't consume more than they need, their goals and ethics rarely come into question, they never start a war with the opposing faction, and when they do manage to do something morally grey it is immediately turned around on them with only the Purge of Dalaran evading this problem.

Essentially, because of the rest of Azeroth, we hold the races of the setting to an expectation that would, in reality or in any other setting, be ridiculously high. If the world were written in a more believable manner, the orcs could actually have some sympathy. If Garrosh were written in a more believable manner, his actions would seem extreme but still be comprehensible.
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  #577  
Old 01-14-2014, 01:23 PM
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Has anyone yet replied to "What is wrong with the Horde's story?" with "It exists"? Because if not, I would like to take that honor.
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  #578  
Old 01-14-2014, 01:51 PM
Valtheria Valtheria is offline

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Has anyone yet replied to "What is wrong with the Horde's story?" with "It exists"? Because if not, I would like to take that honor.
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Last edited by Valtheria; 01-14-2014 at 02:02 PM..
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  #579  
Old 01-14-2014, 02:17 PM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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Originally Posted by Valtheria View Post
Good to be back, SoL. Need to leave soon, making this "quick".

I feel that what's wrong with the Horde story isn't just that they've been hit with the villain bat, it's that every other playable race on Azeroth is ridiculously, idealistically good and innocent of wrongdoing when compared to them except the Forsaken (whose capital was described as a "bastion of evil" on their official website) and the goblins (who are basically Ferengi).

It's only natural that we can see the orcs as bad because the orcs, in a more complex story, would easily be considered morally dark grey. The most "human" characters in Warcraft at the moment are the blood elves, who deal with loss, pain, grief, and mistakes in fairly believable ways.

Lor'themar Theron, for example, is a very human character with much more believable flaws than, say, Varian Wrynn, whose flaws vanish in a way that - even with explanation - seems forced and awkward. Lor'themar made difficult choices, was forced into no-win situations, and occasionally had to do what he knew went against his ethical standards for the good of his people.

Lor'themar has shown that he can be brutal and bloodthirsty as much as he can be affable and kind. He can make a bad judgement call and question the actions he's taken in the past. He can sometimes let prejudice or paranoia get in the way of what is best for his people (see Zul'Aman). He can make a foolish mistake due to pride (see Quel'Delar for anyone but blood elves).

Moreover, the orcs, Forsaken, and Bilgewater Cartel are literally the only creatures on Azeroth whose governments are actively making the planet worse. The humans, night elves, gnomes, dwarves (now even the dark irons), draenei, worgen, tauren, Darkspear trolls, blood elves (after TBC), and pandaren as races are almost never painted in a grey light - they are morally upstanding to a much greater degree than the orcs.

In particular, the humans don't act like humans as we understand them on Earth; they don't consume more than they need, their goals and ethics rarely come into question, they never start a war with the opposing faction, and when they do manage to do something morally grey it is immediately turned around on them with only the Purge of Dalaran evading this problem.

Essentially, because of the rest of Azeroth, we hold the races of the setting to an expectation that would, in reality or in any other setting, be ridiculously high. If the world were written in a more believable manner, the orcs could actually have some sympathy. If Garrosh were written in a more believable manner, his actions would seem extreme but still be comprehensible.
I agree completely, but I think the bolded parts are just inconsistent writing, a well known Blizzard trademark Lor'themar just had more luck than Garrosh that his inconsistencies were from a time when he was Lor'who and that he ended up being a protagonist in the end.

I also think that this moral whitewashing of the Alliance cheapens the whole setting, it makes both factions stupid in different ways.
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  #580  
Old 01-14-2014, 03:49 PM
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Has anyone yet replied to "What is wrong with the Horde's story?" with "It exists"? Because if not, I would like to take that honor.
Why, envious?
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  #581  
Old 01-14-2014, 05:20 PM
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Why, envious?
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  #582  
Old 01-14-2014, 05:53 PM
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Has anyone yet replied to "What is wrong with the Horde's story?" with "It exists"? Because if not, I would like to take that honor.
I said everything. Does that count?
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Because if a storyteller is doing his job, he makes you care. And if that storyteller then says "I dunno, then they stopped fighting, I guess," without any explanation or clarification, his audience has every right to be pissed off. Because they were given reason to stay interested, reason to keep up with his tale, only to be shut down just as things were getting good. A waste of time, a waste of emotional tension, a waste, if you fail to grasp the significance of narrative, of money.
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  #583  
Old 01-14-2014, 06:39 PM
Trickster Trickster is offline

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Why, envious?
You have no idea.

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I said everything. Does that count?
I feel it wasn't...ah what's the word? Provocative enough? Smug enough? Whatever. Genesis, enlighten my friend!
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  #584  
Old 01-15-2014, 04:12 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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Forsaken and Night Elves are the only "natural" conflict-instigating mechanisms. There should be no quarrel between the Alliance and the Horde without those.

(The possible "old-school Alliance tries to take revenge in rage without seeing that the Horde is good now" has been done already)

I don't even think the original "need for resources" explanation about Garrosh's War was good enough. Now, a civilizational conflict over "what to do with the beautiful magical forest" is something I can get behind.
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  #585  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:02 AM
Millenia Millenia is offline

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I don't even think the original "need for resources" explanation about Garrosh's War was good enough. Now, a civilizational conflict over "what to do with the beautiful magical forest" is something I can get behind.
It's been done.
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Originally Posted by Mustrum View Post
Because if a storyteller is doing his job, he makes you care. And if that storyteller then says "I dunno, then they stopped fighting, I guess," without any explanation or clarification, his audience has every right to be pissed off. Because they were given reason to stay interested, reason to keep up with his tale, only to be shut down just as things were getting good. A waste of time, a waste of emotional tension, a waste, if you fail to grasp the significance of narrative, of money.
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  #586  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:04 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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It's been done.
Yeah, but little to nobody among the fans interprets it as such.
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  #587  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:16 AM
Millenia Millenia is offline

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Originally Posted by Kir the Wizard View Post
(The possible "old-school Alliance tries to take revenge in rage without seeing that the Horde is good now" has been done already)


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Originally Posted by Kir the Wizard View Post
Yeah, but little to nobody among the fans interprets it as such.
How can they not? If the Horde is like "dude, this forest is neat, I'm gonna take this because, uh, I'm a jackass", then it is pretty much saying "what should we do with this forest? Take it!"
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The Alliance's three rules on faction conflict:
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3) You can't leave the game.

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Originally Posted by Mustrum View Post
Because if a storyteller is doing his job, he makes you care. And if that storyteller then says "I dunno, then they stopped fighting, I guess," without any explanation or clarification, his audience has every right to be pissed off. Because they were given reason to stay interested, reason to keep up with his tale, only to be shut down just as things were getting good. A waste of time, a waste of emotional tension, a waste, if you fail to grasp the significance of narrative, of money.
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  #588  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:25 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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[]2yqUpypQwGs[/youtube]
Blame WoW, not Kir.

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How can they not? If the Horde is like "dude, this forest is neat, I'm gonna take this because, uh, I'm a jackass", then it is pretty much saying "what should we do with this forest? Take it!"
Thank you for demonstrating the exact bad attitude I'm talking about.

(the actual Horde speaks nothing of its motivations and acts as if fighting for the forest is the natural state of life)
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  #589  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:39 AM
Millenia Millenia is offline

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(the actual Horde speaks nothing of its motivations and acts as if fighting for the forest is the natural state of life)
Conquest and glory. And that is a motivation, even if a piss poor one.

Either way, repeating it is just going to be another goddamn rehash of vanilla/Cataclysm/Wolfheart.

At least Alliance PCs versus Forsaken could potentially be something that hasn't been repeated all that much, even if Vol'jin would still be a terrible man for defending such a horrible kingdom.
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The Alliance's three rules on faction conflict:
1) You can't win.
2) You can't break even.
3) You can't leave the game.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustrum View Post
Because if a storyteller is doing his job, he makes you care. And if that storyteller then says "I dunno, then they stopped fighting, I guess," without any explanation or clarification, his audience has every right to be pissed off. Because they were given reason to stay interested, reason to keep up with his tale, only to be shut down just as things were getting good. A waste of time, a waste of emotional tension, a waste, if you fail to grasp the significance of narrative, of money.
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  #590  
Old 01-15-2014, 03:06 PM
Arcadia Arcadia is offline

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You're deluding yourself if you think Garrosh was yelling at Krom'gar for damaging the land or wasting supplies.

His quotes in the event.

* Was my command to murder innocents, Krom'gar?
* Instead, you laid waste to the land. Murdered innocents. Children even...
* I spent a very long time in Northrend, Krom'gar. I learned much about the Horde in that time.
* While there, a wise old war hero told me something that I would carry with me forever...
* Honor," Krom'gar, "No matter how dire the battle... never forsake it.
* Overlord Krom'gar, you have disgraced the Horde. You have brought shame to us as a people.


All this makes the writing of Mists Of Pandaria even shittier.
Blizzard tried to justify Garrosh's zig-zagging personality and morals by saying he's "weak-willed", as in he adjusts his views to fit with the people around him like he's a teenager. The way they pitch it, the Garrosh of Cata and Stonetalon Mountains was influenced by Saurfang Sr, obviously. The question, though, is who is responsible for his attitudes in MoP? At best, I would hazard a guess and say Malkorok is the most probably candidate, seeing as he was Rend's right hand before defecting.


But even then, if you were to accept this explanation, it still makes for shitty writing because a serious character flaw like that needs to be spotlighted and shown very early on, not something you have to release an official statement about later down the line when you've written yourself into a corner.
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  #591  
Old 01-15-2014, 03:43 PM
Mark_Romaneck Mark_Romaneck is offline

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Blizzard tried to justify Garrosh's zig-zagging personality and morals by saying he's "weak-willed", as in he adjusts his views to fit with the people around him like he's a teenager. The way they pitch it, the Garrosh of Cata and Stonetalon Mountains was influenced by Saurfang Sr, obviously. The question, though, is who is responsible for his attitudes in MoP? At best, I would hazard a guess and say Malkorok is the most probably candidate, seeing as he was Rend's right hand before defecting.


But even then, if you were to accept this explanation, it still makes for shitty writing because a serious character flaw like that needs to be spotlighted and shown very early on, not something you have to release an official statement about later down the line when you've written yourself into a corner.

Pfft everything can be explained with time travel, that would make Garrosh portrayal consistent.

Seriously, its like back to the future watch the first one and Mcfly starts as a whimp and a loser, yet as he tampers with the past he retroactively changes himself becoming bolder and decisive.

Same with Garrosh
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  #592  
Old 01-15-2014, 03:44 PM
Vexander Vexander is offline

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I think the problem with the Horde's story as a faction is... well, I don't see a problem personally. The Horde has a story, one that is consistently told and portrayed, and even the stories of its subraces are being told and touched up on from time to time as well. You can see the Horde story in-game and in the novels as well. Their quests in-game and in patches tend to be done first, meaning that they get high quality treatment and a lot of polish to come across as visually impressive, and as a result, the story tends to stick with players. In the novels they tend to do rather well. The characters are deep, they're believable for the most part. What we see and learn later on reinforces this, such as, say, Lor'themar being super quiet during the Horde meeting in Tides of War, even when Sylvanas asks for his support when she mentions how the Eastern Kingdoms' Horde would be endangered (that includes Quel'Thalas). We can infer that Lor'themar was quiet because he was already planning to leave the Horde, as shown in Mists of Pandaria.

The biggest issue the Horde story has, is one that is consistent with Blizzard's style of Story-Telling. A single character is what the story revolves around. In the Horde's case, it was Garrosh. Beyond that, we could argue that the Horde's Story suffers from a relapse of a story that had already been told.

Just my two coppers. The Horde story gets told.
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  #593  
Old 01-15-2014, 04:38 PM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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such as, say, Lor'themar being super quiet during the Horde meeting in Tides of War, even when Sylvanas asks for his support when she mentions how the Eastern Kingdoms' Horde would be endangered (that includes Quel'Thalas). We can infer that Lor'themar was quiet because he was already planning to leave the Horde, as shown in Mists of Pandaria.
Well, two things.

1) You're giving Blizzard way too much credit and foresight.

2) I think it is quite plain that it was his political move to get closer to Orgrimmar proper, so he doesn't have to work with the Horde through Sylvanas. Which left Sylvanas in a weaker position.
Eventually this ploy bit him in the ass when Garrosh was made into a racist dick (hence the attempted defection).
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  #594  
Old 01-15-2014, 04:44 PM
Vexander Vexander is offline

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Well, two things.

1) You're giving Blizzard way too much credit and foresight.

2) I think it is quite plain that it was his political move to get closer to Orgrimmar proper, so he doesn't have to work with the Horde through Sylvanas. Which left Sylvanas in a weaker position.
Eventually this ploy bit him in the ass when Garrosh was made into a racist dick (hence the attempted defection).
That's also possible, though I think either idea works. It demonstrates that the story is there and being told in advance. Personally, I can't see what you're suggesting myself. Remember one of Lor'themar's few lines in that book. Garrosh asks him where his loyalties lay, as though asking about the other Horde leaders or himself, and Lor'themar replied, "With the Horde."

If he was trying to get on Garrosh's side, he would have said, "With the Warchief."
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  #595  
Old 01-15-2014, 05:11 PM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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That's also possible, though I think either idea works. It demonstrates that the story is there and being told in advance. Personally, I can't see what you're suggesting myself. Remember one of Lor'themar's few lines in that book. Garrosh asks him where his loyalties lay, as though asking about the other Horde leaders or himself, and Lor'themar replied, "With the Horde."

If he was trying to get on Garrosh's side, he would have said, "With the Warchief."
That is a fair point, but I remain unconvinced.

Maybe he was being tactful, leaving his options open. Maybe he wanted a stronger link with the mainstream Horde (again bypassing Sylvanas was the main goal) but not with Garrosh himself.

In the end the question remains, why wait? Why even wait for Garrosh to put his people in danger (which happend in MoP) before defecting? If he was planning this all along, that is.
No, it makes much more sense that he only decided to defect after the Pandaria debacle.
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  #596  
Old 01-15-2014, 05:20 PM
Vexander Vexander is offline

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That is a fair point, but I remain unconvinced.

Maybe he was being tactful, leaving his options open. Maybe he wanted a stronger link with the mainstream Horde (again bypassing Sylvanas was the main goal) but not with Garrosh himself.

In the end the question remains, why wait? Why even wait for Garrosh to put his people in danger (which happend in MoP) before defecting? If he was planning this all along, that is.
No, it makes much more sense that he only decided to defect after the Pandaria debacle.
Seems to me that defecting in secret is not something that happens overnight. Varian and Lor'themar were in communication for some time, or so its implied during the questing. They'd have to have been for Garrosh to have learned about it and set it up to fail. In fact, after Lor'themar's vague answer in Tides of War, Garrosh even comments that he needs to have Lor'themar watched.

Seems to me like that's how Garrosh even learned of it in the first place. But yeah, secret talks like that don't happen overnight. Lor'themar would have to be sure the Alliance would -accept- the Blood Elves, and that'd take some convincing with the Night Elves. Then there would be the Horde's retribution for the betrayal; Quel'Thalas would need reinforcements instantaneously.
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Old 01-15-2014, 05:42 PM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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Seems to me that defecting in secret is not something that happens overnight. Varian and Lor'themar were in communication for some time, or so its implied during the questing. They'd have to have been for Garrosh to have learned about it and set it up to fail. In fact, after Lor'themar's vague answer in Tides of War, Garrosh even comments that he needs to have Lor'themar watched.

Seems to me like that's how Garrosh even learned of it in the first place. But yeah, secret talks like that don't happen overnight. Lor'themar would have to be sure the Alliance would -accept- the Blood Elves, and that'd take some convincing with the Night Elves. Then there would be the Horde's retribution for the betrayal; Quel'Thalas would need reinforcements instantaneously.
Well I haven't played in a while so I can't speak from experience, but unless I misunderstood something fierce then the first part of 5.1 questing ends with a disgruntled Lor'themar saying something to the extent of knowing what to do about Garrosh's disregard for blood elf life. Blizzard isn't subtle these days, at all, to me this was the moment he decided to flip.

Further proof that it was a recent call is that Varian didn't have the time to tell anyone, hence Jaina unknowingly fucked up everything. If he didn't tell the crazed woman with a blood elf vendetta I very much doubt he told the NEs or anyone for that matter.
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  #598  
Old 01-15-2014, 06:14 PM
Vexander Vexander is offline

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Well I haven't played in a while so I can't speak from experience, but unless I misunderstood something fierce then the first part of 5.1 questing ends with a disgruntled Lor'themar saying something to the extent of knowing what to do about Garrosh's disregard for blood elf life. Blizzard isn't subtle these days, at all, to me this was the moment he decided to flip.

Further proof that it was a recent call is that Varian didn't have the time to tell anyone, hence Jaina unknowingly fucked up everything. If he didn't tell the crazed woman with a blood elf vendetta I very much doubt he told the NEs or anyone for that matter.
That's a pretty fair point to be honest, and I concede it. Considering Jaina was neutral at the time, she would have been the person to go to regarding bringing the Blood Elves into the Alliance. Sunreavers and all.
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  #599  
Old 01-16-2014, 02:33 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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At least Alliance PCs versus Forsaken could potentially be something that hasn't been repeated all that much, even if Vol'jin would still be a terrible man for defending such a horrible kingdom.
I believe that the most logical scenario would start with Tirion being informed that the Forsaken in Southern Lordaeron are acting just like the Scourge they fought before, resulting in Tirion sending demands to the Warchief to take Forsaken forces back and punish their leadership for the darkest actions. Vol'jin, being indebted to Sylvanas, refuses to do so, which starts the escalation of the conflict.
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Old 01-16-2014, 02:38 AM
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I believe that the most logical scenario would start with Tirion being informed that the Forsaken in Southern Lordaeron are acting just like the Scourge they fought before, resulting in Tirion sending demands to the Warchief to take Forsaken forces back and punish their leadership for the darkest actions. Vol'jin, being indebted to Sylvanas, refuses to do so, which starts the escalation of the conflict.
What Kingdom would you have the Alliance lose to pay for Argentina?
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