Alright, after I vented my initiate trailer displeasure in the previous post, it’s time to elaborate a bit. Starting with lore, of course.
It’s no secret that our motivation goes down the drain the further Shadowlands expansion “evolves”. Yes, we kinda got acquainted with Covenants and their troubles and solved them – these arcs were at least decent. Yes, Sylvanas and Anduin got some “character arcs”, as bad as they were – the former turning from evil to not evil, this path enhanced by acquiring a missing piece of soul, and the latter possessed to get saved. But we still know nothing about the Jailer – the trigger that is behind the whole expansion (and few previous Warcraft arcs, as far as Warcraft 3 RTS).
Zovaal was absent throughout the whole expansion. Whenever we caught a glimpse of him, we saw he’s ominous, he’s doing stuff, but he never, ever told anyone what he’s actually planning and why he’s doing it.
As Shadowlands hold denizens from multiple worlds, not just Azeroth, it’s unclear why he had interest in this particular planet, why couldn’t he perform what he planned without us, why Anduin specifically was that crucial just to steal covenant sigils – and if he were, why kidnap other faction leaders?
“Broken balance”, “rewriting world order” sounds as vague as possible. What he’s planning exactly? The world order is broken – ok, how? You intend to mend it – ok, how? What’s his vision? What will it mean for Azeroth and other planets/worlds? Maybe what Jailer’s planning will be good and better than what we have now? Does he intend to fix Shadowlands, or come to living planets too? How do we fucking know?
It is 9.2., and we still have zero answers about the major villain’s motives, thoughts, goals and intentions. With zero understanding why we’re even following him, except saving Anduin, here we come to Zereth Mortis.
Zereth Mortis is a cradle of death worlds’ creation, and again it casts more questions than answers – which I’m sure, the answers we’ll have none. Ok, I can live with the idea that mysterious “First Ones” designed the worlds of afterlife through robots/”automa” hands.
Guess what? There is not even a glimpse of First Ones in trailer, and we are unlikely to meet them ever in the patch lore. We would deal with “enlightened” Brokers who study the material legacy, and automa robots which actually do the job.
Questions which I’m sure I’m not getting answers for:
1. Are they still tinkering afterlives and why? Are current afterlife worlds not enough to cover the existing worlds? If so, where do current dying souls from uncovered worlds go?
2. Where are the First Ones now? Have they perished and how? Don’t they need to supervise the afterlife creation process? Where are they in trailer? Did they just… leave the robots to tinker mindlessly, without design and for what purpose? If their end was a calamity, why didn’t robots just stop production? How could they operate without a plan and a vision?
3. Why do they need to create flora and fauna in the first place – for dead souls? Why these flora and fauna templates copy the already existing creatures? For example, we saw an Ardenweald metal frog – didn’t they already populate Ardenweald? Do they copy same creature for multiple death realms, and why can’t nature affinity souls just all live in Ardenweald, why do you need a copy?
I’m 99% sure that we get zero explanation of questions that arrived. After all, we just had Korthia: an excellent area by gameplay, but holding zero lore and zero explanation and/or logic. Some archive, some uninspiring guys supervising it, and Mawsworn seeking the Primus’ sigil which he placed there for… reasons? Mark you, we still do not know how and why he picked Korthia, why he even decided to put his sigil there, how he traveled there (and why Jailer could not) and what were Primus’ relations and acquaintance with the archive, and how Jailer even knew that the sigil was there to chain-drag Korthia in the first place.
Of course, I did not play the patch content yet, but there’s a pattern of presenting lore in Shadowlands expansion – that is, rule of cool (but meaningless) scenes, vague ominous words and do what you must, don’t ask. I don’t see developers explaining all these things in game – because they did not do this before throughout 2 expansions, and they did not do this in final trailer either.
And so, the motivation of heroes like us is at its lowest today. Save Anduin is the only task that is left to do. We’re not motivated to walk Zereth Mortis… actually, we are, but for one and only reason: greed, swag and vanity. That’s right, the greatest heroes of Azeroth enter the Eternity’s End (my, the big words) in search of unique pets, mounts and outfit designs which they can take home and show off in their capital cities.
I don’t give a crap about you, robots – just show me what you have to sell that I haven’t seen before.
Shadowlands WoW is just a perfect, but empty shell, carried on by artists and composers. Automa do their job perfectly, but there are no First Ones to guide them. Current helm writers do not reach even a fanfic level. Because what I think and wrote before: they do not have explanation to offer in the first pace, no vision, no logic, no nothing. It’s hard to wrap the lore explanation and logic and present it to players when you don’t have one…
And that’s sad, just sad, very sad.