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Old 08-12-2015, 12:55 AM
HlaaluStyle HlaaluStyle is offline

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Default World of Warcraft: The Abyssal Maw

Inspired by GoldenYak's Reign of Azshara, I thought I'd make my own attempt at theorizing an expansion. Under different circumstances I'd have just used GoldenYak's, since his (her?) work has a great style. However, I figured it'd be best to have something more oriented to Azeroth as portrayed in the travelogue.

This won't be as detailed as what GoldenYak puts together. It'll just discuss new zones, overall plot, and some new races/creatures. I don't have the artistic ability to make maps in WoW's style.

World of Warcraft: The Abyssal Depths assumes the following:

- Ten years have passed since the Siege of Orgrimmar.
- Warlords of Draenor never happened.
- Legion only happened in part--the Broken Isles are there (though I don't go into detail as to what's on them), the Order of the Silver Hand and similar organizations exist, and there are probably a few demon hunters running around. No large-scale demon invasion occurred.
- Garrosh and Sylvanas are both dead. The Horde and Alliance are at peace, but the Horde is clearly the weaker faction. Pandaria currently supports the Horde in order to maintain balance.

Opening Event: Oceans writhe as unnatural storms erupt all across the coasts of Azeroth. Clear skies darken in an instant, and veils of lightning dance across gale-tossed seas. In the panic, only a few notice how nature almost seems to target the great docks and shipyards. The great navies of the Alliance and the Horde are soon destroyed, their metal hulks sinking into the abyss.

Only then do the leviathans erupt from the waters. Pods on their foul bodies open up to disgorge the slithering naga armies. Naga warriors strike into the cities under the cover of darkness and rain. Their strange whips (jellyfish grown onto their arms) paralyze luckless mortals who are carted back to the pods. Thus filled, the leviathans retreat back beneath the waves.

The Horde and Alliance act quickly, sending the remainder of their fleets to the South Seas. Yet submerged monsters sink vessel after vessel, and only a few reach their destinations.

Zones:

Zandalar - Horde - Level 91

Laid low by the Cataclysm, the ancient Zandalari have only reluctantly accepted the leadership of the Darkspear Tribe. Zandalar itself is a shell of its former glory, its ziggurats all but submerged in the consuming ocean. The people live in rude stilt huts perched atop flooded plazas.

The zone will resembled a flooded and ruined city. The Horde's goal is to legitimize the Darkspear Tribe as the chosen of the Loa by swaying (or forcing) the remaining priests to submit. Warchief Vol'jin hopes that this will enable the Horde to pacify Stranglethorn. Conceivably, it will also draw in the remaining forest tribes (the frost and sand trolls are considered lost causes, at this point).

Outraged by the alien presence in the holiest of troll lands, the Zandalari Resistance strikes back against the Horde. However, players will discover that the Resistance itself is relying on mogu shadow warriors. Should these bitter priests be exposed, they will lose whatever legitimacy they possess.

Instance: Zanchuli Palace (91)

Upon discovery, the Zandalari Resistance will retreat to the ancient governmental center of Zandalar. Players must wade through the flooded and monster-haunted stone halls to put an end to Zandalari revanchism before the Resistance can awaken an ancient artifact that threatens all troll-kind.

The Isle of Balor - Alliance - Level 91

A Stormwind possession in ages past, the Isle of Balor was granted to Kul Tiras before the Third War. The colony of Nuvo Tiras once thrived on inter-oceanic trade between Theramore and the Eastern Kingdoms. The city fell into decline after Theramore's fall.

I'm envisioning Balor as being alternately lush and rocky, with several brilliant lagoons. Tide pools thrive on the stony beaches. Nuvo Tiras would use a Mediterranean style of architecture. Despite being a human colony, the major military force will be Kaldorei. Night elven ships (guided by sea druids) were better able to evade the naga defenses.

Alliance players must compete against the Blackbone Armada, a pirate fleet that traffics in plunder and living cargo. Island trolls pose another threat.

Instance: The Brine Pits (91)

The Stormreaver Clan ruled Balor during the Second War, and built their dark fleet within the Brine Pits. Now, the Blackbone Armada seeks to control the demons and undead orcs that still haunt its stony corridors.

Tel'abim - Contested - Level 91-92

The home of the Sharpscale Tribe of island trolls, Tel'abim is one of Azeroth's oldest centers of civilization. Enduring the tyranny of Zandalar and the wrath of the Cataclysm, the Sharpscales have kept their society intact for centuries.

Tel-abim will take visual cues from Hawaii and Indonesia. Lush in the manner of the Lost Isles, it is also heavily developed, with terraced farms and Polynesian-style villages. The Sharpscale Tribe is a neutral faction. Having never particularly liked the Zandalari (though subordinate to them), they are not necessarily impressed by the Darkspear Tribe assuming the ancients' responsibilities.

Fierce beasts haunt the interior of the jungle, while Blackbone pirates and naga encroach from without. The Sharpscale trolls must rely on outsiders to defend their island. No one knows the South Seas as well as Sharpscales, and they may prove an invaluable ally. They also have a monopoly on the banana trade, which is nice.

Instance: Zul'towa (92)

The ancient citadel of Zul'towa has stood as a symbol of Sharpscale independence. Not even the Zandalari ever successfully invaded the submerged city. Now, players must defend the age-old ramparts from pirates and naga. That's right--you're defending an ancient troll city instead of looting it. Zul'towa will be visually based off of Nan Madol.

Raid: Plunder Isle (95)

A rough castle carved out of living rock, Plunder Isle has been a home to pirates and freebooters since time immemorial. The ruthless Admiral Red-tooth, a former Garrosh supporter and ruler of the Blackbone Armada, has chosen Plunder Isle as her home.

The Blackbone Armada has attracted ne'er do wells from around the world. Former Defias, ex-Illidari, vrykul, and others have cast their lots in with the pirates.

That's it for today. I'll add the remaining zones tomorrow or the next day. All the other zones will be underwater. I actually liked Vashj'ir, and this is a fanfic expansion, so that's how it'll be.
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Last edited by HlaaluStyle; 02-15-2016 at 06:22 PM..
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Old 08-12-2015, 07:39 PM
HlaaluStyle HlaaluStyle is offline

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The Scintal Reef (92-93)

The largest coral reef in the world, the Scintal Reef is also an ancient battleground. The makruru have long been a bulwark against naga expansion, but the stresses of the Cataclysm have finally overwhelmed this once-mighty civilization. Murlocs and their naga masters now roam the vibrant realm at will.

The reef still provides the makruru's greatest defense. Makruru coral-shapers can turn the environment against their foes. Yet now, the naga have developed a poison that twists and destroys the coral. The makruru have retreated to the last redoubt of Klek'letu.

The Scintal Reef might be like an even more vibrant version of the Shimmering Expanse. The makruru shape living citadels out of the coral. Though alien in many ways, the makruru respect the warrior spirit of the Horde. Klek'letu will be a Horde-aligned town; makruru found outside of the capital will be neutral toward the Alliance.

The Alliance will work alongside druids seeking to learn more about the oceanic ecosystem, particularly the coral. They hope that the strange and powerful organisms here can be used to heal damaged coastlines elsewhere on Azeroth and beyond.

Instance: Mak'uru (93)

The greatest of the makrura cities, Mak'uru was betrayed from within and given over to the naga. Mak'uru now acts as the naga's forward base for their attacks against the South Seas.

The Boiling Terrace (93-94)

Fire meets water in the Boiling Terrace, a range of undersea volcanoes. Enslaved giant crabs dig into the mountains with armored claws, withdrawing precious ore that the naga use for adornment. Murloc and makrura slaves sift through the rubble for gold dust.

The nomadic ceteanids (dolphin-people, basically) have sent one of their pods (submersible air bubbles/cities) to the edge of this hostile region. The naga have hunted down most of the pods in recent years, and the ceteanids here vow to avenge their fallen brethren. Despite their roving lifestyle, the ceteanids have a sophisticated civilization and powerful magic, making them partial to the Alliance.

Visually, the Boiling Terrace will combine volcanic desolation with ruined reefs and kelp forests. Naga activities have despoiled the once verdant spots. The nagas keep order through their makon (shark-people) auxiliaries.

All factions must contend with the increased naga mining activity, which threatens to trigger a submerged supervolcano that has the potential to destroy both Zandalar and Balor. The Horde will mostly concentrate on provoking murloc slave rebellions, and establishing a submerged goblin outpost called Sealab 2022.

Subzone: The Drowned Reaches

The graveyard of ships since time immemorial, this region is haunted by the ghosts of drowned sailors. Yet the promise of great treasures and powerful artifacts continues to draw interlopers.

Instance: Vizrim Seamount (94)

The enormous Vizrim Seamount has long lain dormant, but the naga seek to reawaken this volcano. Players are sent here to disrupt the naga mining operations, and perhaps to turn the giant crabs against their masters.

The Pillar Deep (94)

Colossal rock columns stand watch over the eerie realm known as the Pillar Deep, some of them stretching almost to the surface. These columns are actually tubeworms grown to enormous size on nutrient-rich waters enhanced by the Well of Eternity.

Keen to exploit this resource, the naga have been enslaving the great worms and further altering them into the dreaded leviathans. Sorcerers and biomancers tweak leviathans and other monsters from within the gilded city of Zrivadj. The leviathans must regularly return to Zrivadj in order to receive the arcane chemicals that sustain their unnatural lives.

The Pillar Deep resembles a dense undersea forest cast in florid reds and violets. Entire biological communities thrive on ledges growing from the sides of the great worms. Naga rule is not unquestioned—a pod of vengeful cetanids is wreaking havoc. They bear no love for surface-dwellers of any political affiliation.

Instance: Zrivadj Growth Vats (94)

The leviathans are the means by which the naga project their power across the globe. Shutting down the vats will make it impossible for the naga to fuel their leviathans, and will enable the surface fleets to re-supply Zandalar and Balor.

Note: Zrivadj itself is not an instance. Only the Growth Vats are.

Special Event: Raid on Nazjatar (94)

With the naga fleets crippled, the Alliance and Horde pull together to attack the shadowy naga capital. Submersibles churn ahead while surface ships await with depth charges. The mortal fleets clash with the remaining leviathans. Yet the attack is repelled as naga sorceries conjure an impenetrable shield around Nazjatar. Another ingress must be found.

The Midnight Depths (94-95)

Not even the naga dare venture into the Midnight Depths. Here is a realm of absolute cold, darkness, and crushing pressure. The only light comes from bioluminescence, which usually heralds predators of unutterable foulness.

Enormous eels slither through featureless plains of white sand. Pallid deep-sea murlocs and naga outcasts rule the marginally more habitable waters around hydrothermal vents.

Only the qualnorm (sentient octopi) offer any sanctuary in this bleak place. Driven to the depths by the naga, they are more interested in the contemplation of ancestral memories than in vengeance. Nonetheless, their ancient minds may hold the secret to breaching Nazjatar.

Raid: Grishan Caverns (95)

Fools rush in where the naga fear to swim. A foulness around the caverns hints that an eldritch presence may be making its home somewhere within. Only the bravest will dare to breach the slime-drenched caverns to silence this minion of the Old Gods.

Nazjatar (95)

The qualnorm reveal an ancient tunnel leading up from the Midnight Depths and connecting with Nazjatar. Through this, the Horde and Alliance will put an end to the naga threat. Facing them is the power of Queen Azshara.

The age-old metropolis is a place of nightmare. Slaves fill the streets, their bodies riddled by deep sea parasites that ensure obedience. The naga rule their domain from scaled and gilded palaces, all of them pale imitations of the rainbow-hued Royal Palace of Azshara.

The efforts of slaves have allowed the naga to devote themselves to the arts of war and sorcery. Though decadent, they will not go down without a fight.

Instance: Srivijand Slave Pits (95)

At last, the heroes will learn why the naga began the attack with a slave raid. The horrors of this place reveal that the naga never intended to dominate through military might. Instead, they used the captives to test a virulent new plague that will decimate the surface. It will be shown that this is a refinement of the work pioneered by the Forsaken apothecaries, a few of whom have found sanctuary in the pits after being driven from Undercity. This will surely have consequences on the surface.

Instance: Gardens of Zhashvardrinu (95)

House Rivrijinar has endured the insults of Queen Azshara for too long. As venal and cruel as other naga aristocrats, they may be amenable to cooperating with the invaders. This could help bring the remaining naga cities (scattered throughout the depths) to heel. Yet House Rivrijinar will not offer its support until its mortal enemies, House Zhashvardrinu, is put to the sword. The heroes must lead an assault on the ancestral home of Zhashvardrinu.

That's it for now. I'll make another post with the major patches, and a final one that goes into more detail on the races. Let me know what you think.
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Last edited by HlaaluStyle; 08-13-2015 at 01:11 AM..
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Old 08-13-2015, 11:15 AM
HlaaluStyle HlaaluStyle is offline

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Patch 6.1 - Buried Secrets

While the Horde and the Alliance took the battle to Nazjatar, the Steamwheedle Cartel began its own campaign to reclaim the goblin homeland of Kezan. Both Gnomeregan and the Bilgewater Cartel are interested in what might be uncovered, and have sent their own teams.

Kezan (95)

Ruined smokestacks reach out like crooked fingers from the great ash heap of Kezan. Enormous pits reveal the skeletons of abandoned factories and mansions. All the while, ash eats away at the metal and cement.

The race is on to reclaim the wealth of Kezan. Gnomes and Bilgewater operatives compete to win the favor of the Steamwheedle Cartel, which has generously offered to share salvage with those who cooperate. All efforts are based out of Cogsport, a reclaimed section of the ruined city.

The overall structure is of a daily quest zone, perhaps with a competitive aspect. While most of the goblins perished, the hobgoblins have survived in a feral and vicious state.

Instance: The Kaja Core (95)

Kaja'mite reserves had been dwindling for decades by the time the Cataclysm hit. Now, it's in higher demand than ever before (despite naysayers who've pointed out that the goblins have done just fine in the years without it)! Defended by berserk automatons and enhanced hobgoblins, the Kaja Core will challenge heroes to reclaim one of the last deposits of this essential ore.

Patch 6.2 - The Glory of Azshara

The time has come to assault the Royal Palace! Queen Azshara has gathered her elite guards for one final stand against the mortals who dare trespass in her realm.

Instance: The Spines (95)

The remnants of the once-mighty naga army await in the Spines, a treacherous fortress complex surrounding the Royal Palace. The naga's finest commanders have turned this place into a deathtrap, and will stop at nothing to preserve their queen.

Raid: Azshara's Royal Palace (95)

Few outsiders have ever seen this domain of cold splendor and bejeweled cruelty. Fewer still have returned. Defeating Queen Azshara on her home turf will be a true test for the champions of the surface world.

Patch 6.3 - The Rift

Queen Azshara has escaped! Accompanied by her most fanatical retainers, the immortal naga ruler has fled into the depths of the Rift. There is no doubt that she seeks to reach what remains of the Well of Eternity.

Raid: The Rift (95)

Reality itself frays in the depths of the Rift. The waters pulse with arcane energies, and the proximity of the Old Gods spreads corruption in all who venture near.

Though victory is beyond her reach, Queen Azshara will never surrender to mortals. Her goal in the Rift is nothing less than the destruction of Azeroth itself.
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