Welcome to the World of Warcraft Readthrough where I am diving into the lore of Warcraft chronologically. For a running list of characters, look here. You do not have to have played the game or have any previous knowledge of the world, but please note, since this is an in-depth read, there will be spoilers.
We read last week about the finding of the world Azeroth and the many battles that took place for control. Through the Keepers, the Titans wrestled the world from the Old Gods and banished the Elemental Lords to another plane. It is now up to them to set the world on a better path.
Once peace was brought the the world, the Keepers first set about healing the scar left by Y’Shaarj, eventually staunching the wound. This left an enormous lake of energy which they termed the “Well of Eternity.” The Keepers continued to heal and grow the world in many ways using relics called the Pillars of Creation gifted to them by the Pantheon. They created two machines that would work together to strengthen the world-soul. The Forge of Wills in the north would also be able to create new titan-forged and other creatures. The Forge of Origination was to be placed in the south. While on the way to install it, Highkeeper Ra found pieces of Y’Shaarj scattered across the world. The most powerful piece, the heart, he encased in the Vault of Y’Shaarj, and he tasked the newly created Mogu to defend it. While in the south, he also made the prison surrounding C’Thun stronger and entrusted the also newly made Tol’vir and Anubisath giants with attending it.
Meanwhile, another Keeper, Freya, was busy populating the world. She created the Emerald Dream, “a vast and ever-shifting dimension of spirits and nature magic.” While it is not specifically said how she created this realm, the book gives theories, one of which is that she wove it around the sleeping world-soul’s dream so she could communicate with it. This Dream would regulate the flora and fauna of Azeroth. She found areas where the Well of Eternity’s powers mingled and created great territories of nature which spawned diverse life forms. The greatest of these was the Wild Gods, gigantic animals whom Freya cared for deeply. At the foot of Mount Hyjal, she bound them to the Emerald Dream. Other creatures formed from the elements who escaped banishment, such as proto-dragons.
Eventually, things relaxed and regulated. They named this primary continent Kalimdor, meaning Land of Eternal Starlight. Seeing that their kin would be taken care of by the Keepers, the Pantheon departed Azeroth. They named Odyn the Prime Designate and tasked him with guarding the prison of Yogg-Saron. As a fail-safe, they entrusted Algalon the Observer, a celestial constellar, one like they had put on many other worlds in case the corruption grew again. Algalon would be in charge of purging the world should that happen. Before departing, the Discs of Norgannon were created in order to record all events as they happened.
A much simpler section for our final stop before our first novel. It is a quick recap of the creation of several areas important to both future lore and the game. Most of the novels that we read will not touch on much of the titan-forged machinery. What’s important is the creatures that spawn from those creations. We will have future run-ins with all the ones I mentioned. I wish more description of each had been given, but I understand there are so many races that will be created, it would be hard to manage. We will have to wait and see what is included in our future readings to see if it is an error that should be rectified.
The creation of the Well of Eternity and the Emerald Dream are big. These are vitally important to nearly everything in the future. I really enjoyed the “theory” that the Emerald Dream was really the world-soul’s dream. It is a place that they say does not follow the concepts of time or distance, and I’d like to think that’s because the world-soul has no concept of these things.
My biggest question has to remain with the Old Gods. They left them in these prisons, but they are still buried into the world. Couldn’t they continue to bury deep and reach the world-soul without any of the keepers’ knowledge? Previous readings kind of touched on this, saying they were locked in place, but I wish it was given more detail on how they could prevent them from burrowing, since that is the whole reason to fear them. Instead, it is just another machine from the titan-forged that we don’t understand the workings behind.
And because I have touched on this subject in my last two posts, I may as well just continue it here: women. I did not list the Wild Gods, because there are twelve in total, and while they may play parts in future readings, after the last post, I wanted to prevent another long bullet list. But, I have to say that out of 12, only 3 are given the female gender, one of which is given the “Mother” title. It’s just another little disappointment that I keep hoping changes as I continue reading.
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Here is where we stop, because the next section revolves around the infamous proto-dragon, Galakrond, who is the subject of our first actual novel. So far, I really enjoyed the Chronicle. As I stated in an earlier post, it likely wouldn’t appeal to non-Warcraft players. There are a lot of names and terms that are strange on the tongue, and it could make for a confusing read. While each section reads smoothly, the detail and description does not quite make it an easy read. The maps certainly help, since the continent is so large, however, they don’t often give descriptions of the areas the story is taking place. There also appeared to be a lot of name-dropping for areas that players would remember but might confuse a new reader. The beginning also contained some great descriptions of the magic and cosmology.
Even as an avid player of the game, one who through many expansions actually read the quest text and watched the cut-scenes, this book was very enlightening. And I’m only a fraction of the way through it. Based on the sections following Galakrond, we will be returning to the Chronicle after Dawn of the Aspects and remain there for quite some time. A quick scan shows me that we are in for a lot more information and the setting up of the world of Azeroth we now know, so I will need to break it down into multiple posts again. In fact, I may need to rethink how to do them in order to cut back on the time we are spending in one book.
If you are reading along with me, what are your thoughts on the book itself? Even if you aren’t reading along, how are you feeling about the lore presented thus far? Are there any parts that baffle you? What was the most interesting? I look forward to our next part in the series!