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Old 07-29-2014, 06:03 AM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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Orc Icon (War3) The Legacy of Garrosh: My Take

Garrosh is dead, and Thrall has killed him. In his life he was one of the most despised names in World of Warcraft. It's not hard to see why. Labeled a irredeemable jerk, a neo-nazi sucked into the Warcraft world, a "filthy piece of rat rectum", a racist whore, and many other obscenities. However, did it even have to come to this? What was Garrosh's problem. Was he supposed to be hated? The anwser is that it all came down to Blizzard's bad writing in making a character. He could have been anything. But bad writing killed him.

The haters believe that this was planned from the start. However, I will for the purposes of this analysis, take that into effect and assume that Garrosh was supposed to be the villain from day 1. Does he play his part well. NOT AT ALL!!

Overall it is clear there are clashing, inconsistent, personalities with Garrosh, the accusation was that he has no "center" used by Blizzard to justify this. However when you think about it, it just doesn't work and is a crappy excuse. Even worse is that the haters of Garrosh make excuses that this is what he has been, and it may be true....but this dosen't excuse what Blizzard has done.

The major charge is that since Garrosh is evil, since he's an "Orcish Hitler", that he dosen't deserve any backstory if all he does is kill, kill, kill. However that is not true, even the worst of us has stories to tell. Ever since ancient mythology, there have been protagonists of their own stories that could qualify as villainous from a moral standpoint. In early modern literature, there were Villain Protagonist. William Shakespeare created two of the most famous in Macbeth and Richard III from the plays bearing their name. They were technically THE central characters in their stories. We followed them as they moved the plot, saw the events that unfolded from their points of view, and were enthralled by watching them even though their actions were completely despicable. These protagonists were bad. They may have started out with good intentions, or may have an enabler implied to be the true villain of the story(ie: Lady Macbeth for Macbeth), but they ended up irredeemable and sealed their fate by their own choices. And yet their stories still worked because they were compelling and well written enough to work. We knew these were evil people who were in the lead roles, but that did not detract from the stories as entertainment and as art.

And they may begin well-intentioned in the first place, but become irredeemable or destructive. Walter White started out with their family's best interests at heart before their goals and actions devolved into something darker. Similarly Hayley Stark tortures and kills rapists, child molestors, and murderers, and Dexter Morgan kills other killers who are even worse than he is. But...is all this right? Does occasionally doing good earn leniency on people who've committed numerous atrocities? Does paying evil unto evil make this person's evil justified? Does losing your way matter if you had a "way" to begin with?

Arthas got one novel telling his story, villains in other media, such as Lex Luthor, Palpatine, Sauron, Voldemort, Hannibal Lectre, and Norman Bates all got an origin story showing the birth of monsters. Milton gave us Lucifer in Paradise Lost. Even GRRM gave us backstories and context for people like Tywin and Cersei. So why should Garrosh NOT get a backstory? War Crimes could have dealt with him in a front role, Tides of War could have dealt with him in a front role. They haven't done that! Garrosh is unrelatable as a villain, but that is a problem because we need to relate to the villain to some extent because that is the point of War Crimes to see that everyone has the potential to become Garrosh. However they don't do that effectively because they don't want to focus on Garrosh but on everyone else. But to understand how we could all become monsters we must focus on the monster see how he becomes that way. If Garrosh becomes relateable, with a backstory and all, and his methods explained to us then we could see that he wasn't an aberration, that he was the product of his time that was twisted by his own mind, and that we could fall into the same trap and become the same type of destroyer if we don't watch our own behaviour in crisis situations.

And just because he was the "Orcish Hitler" dosen't mean he dosen't deserve any backstory when we consider that Gihren Zabi, a even bigger and more promonient Hitler analogy than Garrosh, of all people actually got a backstory and the rational for his actions in the Gundam novel. In 0069, Side 3 became the Sovereignty (or Principality, Archduchy, Kingdom, take your pick) of Zeon. This change has Gihren’s fingerprints on it. Monarchy comes with the baggage of divine right, superiority by virtue of mere birth, and a family who symbolizes the nation. Gihren would make use of this baggage during the One Year War, and his sister Kycilia would support him in doing so. The creation of this new monarchy would be commemorated as Foundation Day every August 15 until the end of the war, and perhaps even afterwards by Zeon monarchist holdouts. He destroyed most of the world but he had intentions. To him if society is depopulated then human beings would be able to achieve their true potential. It is a genocidal, twisted mentality, but it was a mentality regardless.

We see that he was a human, that he was any of us when we embrace our own dark sides. The novels again describe his willingness to take on associates for their strengths, not their social position. Pages 102 and 103 say that he was always careful to appoint people not related to the Zabis for positions of power. They also describe rather delicately his fondness for the shadier side of Zum City life and for wild parties. Although presumably he wouldn’t have time to party by 0079, and probably not for some years before, his liking for parties would prove to the Zeon population that he was more than just an egghead who liked to read books. He also has a mistress, Cecilia, whom he loves and respects, one of the few truly sympathetic points about the man. Overall it becomes all to clear that Gihren is not an aberration, but a human turned into a monster by his actions to the world around him and by opportunity. If Gihren can get some humanizing qualities, why not Garrosh? You could argue that Japan is lax laws and has denial about WWII, however the author of that book is the same author who made the show and he himself is very appalled about Japan atrocities in World War II, so no excuse for Garrosh not being developed.

For Garrosh we see that he didn't start off bad in his tenure as warchief, he was brutal, a warmonger, but he actually had some good points. Does he have potential to become something horrible? Yes. It would be intresting. So many villains were driven mad by power sources or were evil to begin with. The personality flaws did contribute to them becoming evil and/or monstrous but it was largely due to that evil artifact. Garrosh would prove to be unique because he was a warmonger, yet he wanted the Horde to prosper and had a genuine sense of honor and actual virtues. This would be intresting, seeing someone turn evil for the good of his nation not because of some evil power, but because of some actually justified reasons. Bad guys usually don’t know they are bad. Even wrongdoers cognizant of their moral failings and unwilling or unable to change are often victims themselves to psychological problems. In the real world, the type of person who regularly commits evil actions normally attempts to rationalize such behavior as acceptable somehow. In fact, the worst wrongs are usually committed by people who believe in the rightness of what they are doing. This could have been Garrosh's final flaw, his sense of honor combined with his nationalism would drive him over the edge.

However, this was neither developed in any way. One minute he had his virutes, but he removed them within 5 seconds in the next expansion. He could have had a slower turn into a villain. Maybe some sort of double movement--his innate flaws and his honor. I frankly think there was a plan to deal with N'Zoth and Azshara before the war ended, Vash'ir was supposed to be a transition to a deep sea expansion. A battle for the islands of Azeroth would have been good for Garrosh character development as the war takes a toll on his mind. He could then maybe learn that sometimes honor holds back efficiency in combat and thus employ pragmatism and realpolitik, maybe with the help of smarter and more cunning generals, but that would stain his honor and he started taking less honorable decisions and using dirty tatics. But he would justify it using Thucydides mentality of political realism--The strong have no principles, only interests, and if the intrests serve the horde well, than so be it. Thrall and the players would fight N'Zoth and the Naga but see what Garrosh is becoming. Maybe as we fight Azshara and N'Zoth, Garrosh has a glimpse of the Old God powers and wonders what if he weaponizes it---and that would segway into his motivations in Pandaria.

It is a shame that this xpack idea never came to pass. Everyone hated Vash'ir and instead of fixing their problems with underwater cmbat, Blizzard chose to neglect the Naga, Neptulon, and N'Zoth, putting Deathwing as the master of the Cataclysm despite a Deathwing/Black Dragon xpack perfectly segwaying into a Old God expansion. If I were Blizzard I would have fixed underwater combat, revamped Vash'ir, added in that raid, and made the next expansion about the OGs. It is a better progression: Black Dragon destroys the world, we stop him and kill his master, then we fall to our own hatreds and have to pick ourselves back up,

Furthermore speaking of motivation, the game gives the impression that he was evil out of nowhere. However there were plenty of missed opportunities for motivations. The invasion of Ashenvale was seen as unjustified aggression. However, no one tells of the sanctions inflicted on the Horde by the Night Elves and how it may be justified. The Bombing of Theramore was a war crime, but it was implied Garrosh did it because he was evil. A better motivation would be because it saves lives. Maybe he pulls off this justification, that it was effective. But we never get this justification except he wants to kill people. All the evil Garrosh does was written in "and he did it because he was evillllll". He claims he wants to look out for his people but we never get that in his motivation.

Which is a shame In the perspective of the conquering side, Garrosh is their hero; in the perspective of the defending side, Garrosh is a tyrant. It could have been an intresting duality when we compare the worldviews of what is a hero and what is a villain, but instead we are all forced to see that Garrosh is no good for the whole world.

WoD I feel is another missed opportunity, instead they chose to make the Iron Horde evil for the sake of evil. Blizzard said that his actions would be contextualized in WOD, it hasn't happened. All the preview I have seen is "Iron Horde bad, go kill them". You see, WOD is a good place to give him contextualization. You could imply orcs in Draenor was in conflict and always needed an enemy, and by uniting them against Azeroth, The Legion and everything else, it created unity. Thus Thrall may view Orcish clans as peaceful before Legion screwed us up, Garrosh has no such vision. The Primals and the Breakers could be another point of justification, these entities fighting amoung each other could cause natural disasters, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes. And this could drive the impetus to conquer other worlds, to leave this unstable world behind.

The Primal-Breaker conflict could even be what drove the creation of the Dark Shaman. Maybe the elements refuse to help the orcs against the natural forces of Draenor and as such there needed to be a way to control the elements against the natural forces. The Dark Shaman could have been some form of control against the Elements.

Garrosh was BORN in Draenor, Thrall only had stories and experiences of Old Orcs, he never experienced clan wars and the primals vs. breaker natural disasters. It would be really intresting if what Thrall heard about peaceful, Shamanistic Orcs was only one side of the story, and that Garrosh knows the other side of the story. It would have been an intresting clash of values--Garrosh's worldview that he thinks applies everywhere else based on his upbringing vs. Thrall's more open, but more naive view of Orcish society.

That would have made the inevitable death in the Ring of Prophecy symbolic and worthy of pathos. In fact, maybe have him somehow survive his duel with Thrall, but barely, maybe someone retrives him. Now he is dying, no one can save him, like a terminally ill patient waiting for the end. This would have been cathartic because he will watch his empire collapse in his last moments and he will die a slow, not quick death. In his dying moment as his wounds take their toll, he could have understood his hubris and what a true hero means. It doesn't mean how many lands you conquered, or how many people you killed in a glorious battle. To be a hero means to serve his people, to bring deeds to those who need it desperately, to know that the truest strength always lies within protecting the weak. That ultimately, it was folly to trade honor for efficiency just because a mana bomb got the job done and "saved lives", that war is ugly and never to be glorified, and that no matter how long and hard your struggle has been, you don’t always die a glory-filled death. And thus he dies, only understanding his hubris at the end.

Some people may argue that Garrosh is NOT supposed to be developed properly that he's a tool or is supposed to be hated or designed to be hated, that he's a plot mechanic to screw the horde over, not make it better. A lot of villains are like that, particualy in grey stories like ASOIAF because hey, the audience needs someone to root against. However Garrosh fails in that regard too because it dosen't WORK well. Part of this is due to his inconsistent characterization and his being one thing than another. In contrast Joffrey or Ramsey becoming...well Joffrey and Ramsey is well inclined with their character and we can see it. Joffrey is shown exactly to be a crazy, insane, spoiled little brat that is a dick to everyone even before he got the throne, not some guy who was nice and cute and all before he became king and got an 360 degree characterization. If MOP happened after WOTLK then maybe I can accept but given his characterization and sudden shift from x to y in Cata and MOP.........yeah, its hard to accept this. Another example from ASOIAF is Walder Frey, who never showed any genuine malice before the Red Wedding, but it worked as a plot twist because he was the Starks benefactor and you would never expect him to reveal himself as what he is and breach the laws of hospitality. The shock makes it also very easy for fans to demand "OH I HOPE ARYA KILLS HIM SOON".

By contrast with Garrosh there is no such twist, no sudden bombshell. We already know he would be a villain. He was simply slapped with the villain label, instead of actually growing into the role. A villain needed to grow into their role first before being the villain. If you are a Gundam fan and watched MSG and then the Char's Counterattack movie, you would not be baffled if Char is the villain because the flow was nicer. However, if you watched Zeta Gundam as well you will be baffled because Char was a hero fighting against the oppressive TITAN army and there is no explanation why he would want to drop Axis on Earth. This is almost the same thing with Garrosh, he dosen't flow into that role.

Consider this -- what would the expansion have looked like if we hadn't known Garrosh was going to be the final boss of the final raid? What would it have looked like, if you had gone in and played out the events of patch 5.1, watched the story of the Divine Bell, completely clueless about how far Garrosh was about to fall?

If we had gone in without that knowledge, we would have paid far closer attention to what exactly Garrosh was doing. We would have followed along with that story, popcorn in hand, wondering exactly what happened to Hellscream, and how far he was going to fall. We would have watched in utter shock as Vol'jin was nearly assassinated at the Warchief's behest. We would have looked on in horror as Garrosh excavated the Vale of Eternal Blossoms and discovered the dark heart of Pandaria, intent on using it for his own plans.

And furthermore characters like Joffrey or Bolton or Frey demonstrate to us how evil can triumph over the idealistic, that those who do evil will triumph if the twist society to serve their ends. It served as a wake-up call for everyone and developed them in a positive direction. Joffrey's cruelty to Sansa allowed her to see the world as it truly was and mature into a more cynical person, Bolton's cruelty to Theon makes him more pitable and less of a douche, the aftershocks injustices incurred by the Lannisters, the Freys on Arya combined with the potential death of Sandor allowed for Arya to become a fierce warrior that wants revenge. By contrast, Garrosh does nothing of that sort and forces no plot development as a "tool". Varian is still Varian, Thrall is still Thrall, Anduin is still naive and cannot rise up to what Velen expects of him when we strip away the plot armor, the horde rebellion leaders are still what they are before Cata. Jaina changed into a warmonger, but seems to have snapped back with War Crimes. Everyone's behavior was stagnant, undeveloped. Joffrey or Walder forced the world around him to change, but Garrosh did no such thing.

Thus in conclusion, I have wondered if Garrosh would have been handled better if he was a antihero or if he was supposed to be a villain in the first place, which was the core assumption I decided to assume for this analysis. I come to the conculsion that ultimately there were significant problems with the chaacter. I will admit I cannot hate him because I either end up mourning lost character development or wondering how better he could have been done as a villain or a character to root against had he been developed without inconsistency. Overall, it can be seen that the problems of Garrosh from his inconsistency to his stint as both a hero in one point and a villain in another without any flow or explanation is a testament to Blizzard's own inconsistencies, their own crappy writing, and how it has costed them lore-wise in their desire to favor gameplay over the story.
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So instead of seeing this as a continuation of an era of the 20th century that gave us so much debt and destruction and undermined our liberties and conditions today that are so dangerous, let us think that we are now moving into a new era, a new era where we are going to concentrate on liberty and freedom and property rights and peace. I believe that is the cause that we should lead and I thank you very much for being part of it.~Ron Paul

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Old 07-29-2014, 07:06 AM
neoshadow neoshadow is offline

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Old 07-29-2014, 07:08 AM
EdWunclerIII EdWunclerIII is offline

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The legacy of Garrosh is a one-dimensional villainous idiot.

There's nothing more to it.
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Old 07-29-2014, 07:14 AM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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The legacy of Garrosh is a one-dimensional villainous idiot.

There's nothing more to it.
And as I said, he dosen't even work well as a one-dimensional villainous idiot whose only goal is to drive the conflict. Look at my comparison of him with Joffrey and see who is better written to be hated as a person. And I wanted to point this out as a testament to Blizz poor writing, which is the true legacy of Garrosh when there were much better ways to handle his plot.
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"If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered...~Thomas Jefferson


So instead of seeing this as a continuation of an era of the 20th century that gave us so much debt and destruction and undermined our liberties and conditions today that are so dangerous, let us think that we are now moving into a new era, a new era where we are going to concentrate on liberty and freedom and property rights and peace. I believe that is the cause that we should lead and I thank you very much for being part of it.~Ron Paul

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Old 07-29-2014, 07:22 AM
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The legacy of Garrosh is a one-dimensional villainous idiot.

There's nothing more to it.
And how did you reach that conclusion?
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Old 07-29-2014, 07:30 AM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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And how did you reach that conclusion?
That's the thing with that analogy I find baffling. Garrosh being a villainous idiot dosen't justify inconsistency IMO. Was Joffrey inconsistently characterized? Was Gregor inconsistently characterized? Plus this is less about the character itself and more about the narrative.
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So instead of seeing this as a continuation of an era of the 20th century that gave us so much debt and destruction and undermined our liberties and conditions today that are so dangerous, let us think that we are now moving into a new era, a new era where we are going to concentrate on liberty and freedom and property rights and peace. I believe that is the cause that we should lead and I thank you very much for being part of it.~Ron Paul

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Old 07-29-2014, 08:13 AM
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That's what happens when gameplay drives story, and when the guy in charge of the story simply cannot see how much he loves his favorite characters. All development for Garrosh in his head starts and and ends with "as opposed to Thrall", and if Garrosh gets to have some other kind of development it was simply because someone else saw it.

The worst part is that Thrall isnt even that good of a character

By the way, good analysis
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Old 07-29-2014, 08:16 AM
Fojar Fojar is offline

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Garrosh is dead, and Thrall has killed him. In his life he was one of the most despised names in World of Warcraft. It's not hard to see why. Labeled a irredeemable jerk, a neo-nazi sucked into the Warcraft world, a "filthy piece of rat rectum", a racist whore, and many other obscenities. However, did it even have to come to this? What was Garrosh's problem. Was he supposed to be hated? The anwser is that it all came down to Blizzard's bad writing in making a character. He could have been anything. But bad writing killed him.

The haters believe that this was planned from the start. However, I will for the purposes of this analysis, take that into effect and assume that Garrosh was supposed to be the villain from day 1. Does he play his part well. NOT AT ALL!!

Overall it is clear there are clashing, inconsistent, personalities with Garrosh, the accusation was that he has no "center" used by Blizzard to justify this. However when you think about it, it just doesn't work and is a crappy excuse. Even worse is that the haters of Garrosh make excuses that this is what he has been, and it may be true....but this dosen't excuse what Blizzard has done.

The major charge is that since Garrosh is evil, since he's an "Orcish Hitler", that he dosen't deserve any backstory if all he does is kill, kill, kill. However that is not true, even the worst of us has stories to tell. Ever since ancient mythology, there have been protagonists of their own stories that could qualify as villainous from a moral standpoint. In early modern literature, there were Villain Protagonist. William Shakespeare created two of the most famous in Macbeth and Richard III from the plays bearing their name. They were technically THE central characters in their stories. We followed them as they moved the plot, saw the events that unfolded from their points of view, and were enthralled by watching them even though their actions were completely despicable. These protagonists were bad. They may have started out with good intentions, or may have an enabler implied to be the true villain of the story(ie: Lady Macbeth for Macbeth), but they ended up irredeemable and sealed their fate by their own choices. And yet their stories still worked because they were compelling and well written enough to work. We knew these were evil people who were in the lead roles, but that did not detract from the stories as entertainment and as art.

And they may begin well-intentioned in the first place, but become irredeemable or destructive. Walter White started out with their family's best interests at heart before their goals and actions devolved into something darker. Similarly Hayley Stark tortures and kills rapists, child molestors, and murderers, and Dexter Morgan kills other killers who are even worse than he is. But...is all this right? Does occasionally doing good earn leniency on people who've committed numerous atrocities? Does paying evil unto evil make this person's evil justified? Does losing your way matter if you had a "way" to begin with?

Arthas got one novel telling his story, villains in other media, such as Lex Luthor, Palpatine, Sauron, Voldemort, Hannibal Lectre, and Norman Bates all got an origin story showing the birth of monsters. Milton gave us Lucifer in Paradise Lost. Even GRRM gave us backstories and context for people like Tywin and Cersei. So why should Garrosh NOT get a backstory? War Crimes could have dealt with him in a front role, Tides of War could have dealt with him in a front role. They haven't done that! Garrosh is unrelatable as a villain, but that is a problem because we need to relate to the villain to some extent because that is the point of War Crimes to see that everyone has the potential to become Garrosh. However they don't do that effectively because they don't want to focus on Garrosh but on everyone else. But to understand how we could all become monsters we must focus on the monster see how he becomes that way. If Garrosh becomes relateable, with a backstory and all, and his methods explained to us then we could see that he wasn't an aberration, that he was the product of his time that was twisted by his own mind, and that we could fall into the same trap and become the same type of destroyer if we don't watch our own behaviour in crisis situations.

And just because he was the "Orcish Hitler" dosen't mean he dosen't deserve any backstory when we consider that Gihren Zabi, a even bigger and more promonient Hitler analogy than Garrosh, of all people actually got a backstory and the rational for his actions in the Gundam novel. In 0069, Side 3 became the Sovereignty (or Principality, Archduchy, Kingdom, take your pick) of Zeon. This change has Gihren’s fingerprints on it. Monarchy comes with the baggage of divine right, superiority by virtue of mere birth, and a family who symbolizes the nation. Gihren would make use of this baggage during the One Year War, and his sister Kycilia would support him in doing so. The creation of this new monarchy would be commemorated as Foundation Day every August 15 until the end of the war, and perhaps even afterwards by Zeon monarchist holdouts. He destroyed most of the world but he had intentions. To him if society is depopulated then human beings would be able to achieve their true potential. It is a genocidal, twisted mentality, but it was a mentality regardless.

We see that he was a human, that he was any of us when we embrace our own dark sides. The novels again describe his willingness to take on associates for their strengths, not their social position. Pages 102 and 103 say that he was always careful to appoint people not related to the Zabis for positions of power. They also describe rather delicately his fondness for the shadier side of Zum City life and for wild parties. Although presumably he wouldn’t have time to party by 0079, and probably not for some years before, his liking for parties would prove to the Zeon population that he was more than just an egghead who liked to read books. He also has a mistress, Cecilia, whom he loves and respects, one of the few truly sympathetic points about the man. Overall it becomes all to clear that Gihren is not an aberration, but a human turned into a monster by his actions to the world around him and by opportunity. If Gihren can get some humanizing qualities, why not Garrosh? You could argue that Japan is lax laws and has denial about WWII, however the author of that book is the same author who made the show and he himself is very appalled about Japan atrocities in World War II, so no excuse for Garrosh not being developed.

For Garrosh we see that he didn't start off bad in his tenure as warchief, he was brutal, a warmonger, but he actually had some good points. Does he have potential to become something horrible? Yes. It would be intresting. So many villains were driven mad by power sources or were evil to begin with. The personality flaws did contribute to them becoming evil and/or monstrous but it was largely due to that evil artifact. Garrosh would prove to be unique because he was a warmonger, yet he wanted the Horde to prosper and had a genuine sense of honor and actual virtues. This would be intresting, seeing someone turn evil for the good of his nation not because of some evil power, but because of some actually justified reasons. Bad guys usually don’t know they are bad. Even wrongdoers cognizant of their moral failings and unwilling or unable to change are often victims themselves to psychological problems. In the real world, the type of person who regularly commits evil actions normally attempts to rationalize such behavior as acceptable somehow. In fact, the worst wrongs are usually committed by people who believe in the rightness of what they are doing. This could have been Garrosh's final flaw, his sense of honor combined with his nationalism would drive him over the edge.

However, this was neither developed in any way. One minute he had his virutes, but he removed them within 5 seconds in the next expansion. He could have had a slower turn into a villain. Maybe some sort of double movement--his innate flaws and his honor. I frankly think there was a plan to deal with N'Zoth and Azshara before the war ended, Vash'ir was supposed to be a transition to a deep sea expansion. A battle for the islands of Azeroth would have been good for Garrosh character development as the war takes a toll on his mind. He could then maybe learn that sometimes honor holds back efficiency in combat and thus employ pragmatism and realpolitik, maybe with the help of smarter and more cunning generals, but that would stain his honor and he started taking less honorable decisions and using dirty tatics. But he would justify it using Thucydides mentality of political realism--The strong have no principles, only interests, and if the intrests serve the horde well, than so be it. Thrall and the players would fight N'Zoth and the Naga but see what Garrosh is becoming. Maybe as we fight Azshara and N'Zoth, Garrosh has a glimpse of the Old God powers and wonders what if he weaponizes it---and that would segway into his motivations in Pandaria.

It is a shame that this xpack idea never came to pass. Everyone hated Vash'ir and instead of fixing their problems with underwater cmbat, Blizzard chose to neglect the Naga, Neptulon, and N'Zoth, putting Deathwing as the master of the Cataclysm despite a Deathwing/Black Dragon xpack perfectly segwaying into a Old God expansion. If I were Blizzard I would have fixed underwater combat, revamped Vash'ir, added in that raid, and made the next expansion about the OGs. It is a better progression: Black Dragon destroys the world, we stop him and kill his master, then we fall to our own hatreds and have to pick ourselves back up,

Furthermore speaking of motivation, the game gives the impression that he was evil out of nowhere. However there were plenty of missed opportunities for motivations. The invasion of Ashenvale was seen as unjustified aggression. However, no one tells of the sanctions inflicted on the Horde by the Night Elves and how it may be justified. The Bombing of Theramore was a war crime, but it was implied Garrosh did it because he was evil. A better motivation would be because it saves lives. Maybe he pulls off this justification, that it was effective. But we never get this justification except he wants to kill people. All the evil Garrosh does was written in "and he did it because he was evillllll". He claims he wants to look out for his people but we never get that in his motivation.

Which is a shame In the perspective of the conquering side, Garrosh is their hero; in the perspective of the defending side, Garrosh is a tyrant. It could have been an intresting duality when we compare the worldviews of what is a hero and what is a villain, but instead we are all forced to see that Garrosh is no good for the whole world.

WoD I feel is another missed opportunity, instead they chose to make the Iron Horde evil for the sake of evil. Blizzard said that his actions would be contextualized in WOD, it hasn't happened. All the preview I have seen is "Iron Horde bad, go kill them". You see, WOD is a good place to give him contextualization. You could imply orcs in Draenor was in conflict and always needed an enemy, and by uniting them against Azeroth, The Legion and everything else, it created unity. Thus Thrall may view Orcish clans as peaceful before Legion screwed us up, Garrosh has no such vision. The Primals and the Breakers could be another point of justification, these entities fighting amoung each other could cause natural disasters, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes. And this could drive the impetus to conquer other worlds, to leave this unstable world behind.

The Primal-Breaker conflict could even be what drove the creation of the Dark Shaman. Maybe the elements refuse to help the orcs against the natural forces of Draenor and as such there needed to be a way to control the elements against the natural forces. The Dark Shaman could have been some form of control against the Elements.

Garrosh was BORN in Draenor, Thrall only had stories and experiences of Old Orcs, he never experienced clan wars and the primals vs. breaker natural disasters. It would be really intresting if what Thrall heard about peaceful, Shamanistic Orcs was only one side of the story, and that Garrosh knows the other side of the story. It would have been an intresting clash of values--Garrosh's worldview that he thinks applies everywhere else based on his upbringing vs. Thrall's more open, but more naive view of Orcish society.

That would have made the inevitable death in the Ring of Prophecy symbolic and worthy of pathos. In his dying moment, he could have understood his hubris and what a true hero means. It doesn't mean how many lands you conquered, or how many people you killed in a glorious battle. To be a hero means to serve his people, to bring deeds to those who need it desperately, to know that the truest strength always lies within protecting the weak. And thus he dies, only understanding his hubris at the end.

Some people may argue that Garrosh is NOT supposed to be developed properly that he's a tool or is supposed to be hated or designed to be hated, that he's a plot mechanic to screw the horde over, not make it better. A lot of villains are like that, particualy in grey stories like ASOIAF because hey, the audience needs someone to root against. However Garrosh fails in that regard too because it dosen't WORK well. Part of this is due to his inconsistent characterization and his being one thing than another. In contrast Joffrey or Ramsey becoming...well Joffrey and Ramsey is well inclined with their character and we can see it. Joffrey is shown exactly to be a crazy, insane, spoiled little brat that is a dick to everyone even before he got the throne, not some guy who was nice and cute and all before he became king and got an 360 degree characterization. If MOP happened after WOTLK then maybe I can accept but given his characterization and sudden shift from x to y in Cata and MOP.........yeah, its hard to accept this. Another example from ASOIAF is Walder Frey, who never showed any genuine malice before the Red Wedding, but it worked as a plot twist because he was the Starks benefactor and you would never expect him to reveal himself as what he is and breach the laws of hospitality. The shock makes it also very easy for fans to demand "OH I HOPE ARYA KILLS HIM SOON".

By contrast with Garrosh there is no such twist, no sudden bombshell. We already know he would be a villain. He was simply slapped with the villain label, instead of actually growing into the role. A villain needed to grow into their role first before being the villain. If you are a Gundam fan and watched MSG and then the Char's Counterattack movie, you would not be baffled if Char is the villain because the flow was nicer. However, if you watched Zeta Gundam as well you will be baffled because Char was a hero fighting against the oppressive TITAN army and there is no explanation why he would want to drop Axis on Earth. This is almost the same thing with Garrosh, he dosen't flow into that role.

Consider this -- what would the expansion have looked like if we hadn't known Garrosh was going to be the final boss of the final raid? What would it have looked like, if you had gone in and played out the events of patch 5.1, watched the story of the Divine Bell, completely clueless about how far Garrosh was about to fall?

If we had gone in without that knowledge, we would have paid far closer attention to what exactly Garrosh was doing. We would have followed along with that story, popcorn in hand, wondering exactly what happened to Hellscream, and how far he was going to fall. We would have watched in utter shock as Vol'jin was nearly assassinated at the Warchief's behest. We would have looked on in horror as Garrosh excavated the Vale of Eternal Blossoms and discovered the dark heart of Pandaria, intent on using it for his own plans.

And furthermore characters like Joffrey or Bolton or Frey demonstrate to us how evil can triumph over the idealistic, that those who do evil will triumph if the twist society to serve their ends. It served as a wake-up call for everyone and developed them in a positive direction. Joffrey's cruelty to Sansa allowed her to see the world as it truly was and mature into a more cynical person, Bolton's cruelty to Theon makes him more pitable and less of a douche, the aftershocks injustices incurred by the Lannisters, the Freys on Arya combined with the potential death of Sandor allowed for Arya to become a fierce warrior that wants revenge. By contrast, Garrosh does nothing of that sort and forces no plot development as a "tool". Varian is still Varian, Thrall is still Thrall, Anduin is still naive and cannot rise up to what Velen expects of him when we strip away the plot armor, the horde rebellion leaders are still what they are before Cata. Jaina changed into a warmonger, but seems to have snapped back with War Crimes. Everyone's behavior was stagnant, undeveloped. Joffrey or Walder forced the world around him to change, but Garrosh did no such thing.

Thus in conclusion, I have wondered if Garrosh would have been handled better if he was a antihero or if he was supposed to be a villain in the first place, which was the core assumption I decided to assume for this analysis. I come to the conculsion that ultimately there were significant problems with the chaacter. I will admit I cannot hate him because I either end up mourning lost character development or wondering how better he could have been done as a villain or a character to root against had he been developed without inconsistency. Overall, it can be seen that the problems of Garrosh from his inconsistency to his stint as both a hero in one point and a villain in another without any flow or explanation is a testament to Blizzard's own inconsistencies, their own crappy writing, and how it has costed them lore-wise in their desire to favor gameplay over the story.
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Old 07-29-2014, 08:23 AM
Krakhed Krakhed is offline

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What's there to say?

If I were to look at Garrosh, I would say that his fundamental flaw was that he was created to fulfill a flawed vision of what players wanted or some such thing.

He existed to be a new Grom, while forgetting everything that people admired in the first Grom. Grom's strength wasn't that he was the biggest, most rage-fueled Orc ever.

Grom's strength was that he was able to restrain his bloodrage in combat and fight with skill. He was an agility Hero after all.

No one admired Grom for his failures, and it seemed like the misguided creation of Garrosh made him an embodiment of Grom's fuck ups rather than Grom's success.

We were told that he looked like Grom, but he was given a model that was practically Grom's opposite in every way. Overly crude and bulky, rather than relatively slender and lean.

He was created to help bring about a war that only a few people really wanted, and to show us all how a "True Orc" was. Seeing as how he was Mag'har and everything. However, whoever was behind directing his character had a simply terrible concept of what a "True Orc" should be. An idea that contradicted most Orc fans belief of what that was.

The moment Garrosh was brought into the comics, those very comics that were paving the way for a new faction war, his character had been transformed into a tool. In that way, he was like Varian, though they did something very different with Varian to clumsily try to give players what they thought they wanted. Varian and the Alliance had to be whitewashed just as Garrosh and the Horde loyal to him had to be demonized.

However, it was never too hard to demonize Garrosh, as I believe there was someone who mentioned that a story written from his perspective would just be "Kill! Kill! Kill!"? So yeah.

Garrosh was initially created as a character who could be interesting, and I had high hopes for him in TBC. Unfortunately, it wasn't too long before he was revealed as some twisted delusion of what Orcs should be. I suppose his character arc was some nostalgia driven bullshit from when Orcs were simple conquerors who didn't give a shit about anyone else, and he revealed that no one wants that anymore.

He actually represents the part of story that practically no one but a select few were actually nostalgic for, and now in WoD we're having to deal with all of that shit again.

Of course, from what I can see, no one seems to think that the Iron Horde is really badass or anything. There's no admiration for them even as awesome villains. They don't seem to be regarded as properly "cool" or anything. They're just seen as a bunch of one-dimensional Garrosh clones.

I don't even see people asking for the Iron Horde's architecture or weaponry. No one is demanding their stuff. When the Trolls come by, there's always a bunch of people who wished they had their same crap, and they typically get some level of sympathy for trying to take back what was theirs.

From what I can see, the Iron Horde doesn't even have that. The Mogu and Mantid get far more sympathy, admiration, and approval than the Iron Horde.

So. I guess the situation is simply this. Garrosh was created to be an ideal Orc, but the ideal he was based on is one that people have long ago grown bored of. It was Warcraft III's breaking from that mold that helped make them interesting again.
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Old 07-29-2014, 09:49 AM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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What's there to say?

If I were to look at Garrosh, I would say that his fundamental flaw was that he was created to fulfill a flawed vision of what players wanted or some such thing.

He existed to be a new Grom, while forgetting everything that people admired in the first Grom. Grom's strength wasn't that he was the biggest, most rage-fueled Orc ever.

Grom's strength was that he was able to restrain his bloodrage in combat and fight with skill. He was an agility Hero after all.

No one admired Grom for his failures, and it seemed like the misguided creation of Garrosh made him an embodiment of Grom's fuck ups rather than Grom's success.

We were told that he looked like Grom, but he was given a model that was practically Grom's opposite in every way. Overly crude and bulky, rather than relatively slender and lean.

He was created to help bring about a war that only a few people really wanted, and to show us all how a "True Orc" was. Seeing as how he was Mag'har and everything. However, whoever was behind directing his character had a simply terrible concept of what a "True Orc" should be. An idea that contradicted most Orc fans belief of what that was.

The moment Garrosh was brought into the comics, those very comics that were paving the way for a new faction war, his character had been transformed into a tool. In that way, he was like Varian, though they did something very different with Varian to clumsily try to give players what they thought they wanted. Varian and the Alliance had to be whitewashed just as Garrosh and the Horde loyal to him had to be demonized.

However, it was never too hard to demonize Garrosh, as I believe there was someone who mentioned that a story written from his perspective would just be "Kill! Kill! Kill!"? So yeah.

Garrosh was initially created as a character who could be interesting, and I had high hopes for him in TBC. Unfortunately, it wasn't too long before he was revealed as some twisted delusion of what Orcs should be. I suppose his character arc was some nostalgia driven bullshit from when Orcs were simple conquerors who didn't give a shit about anyone else, and he revealed that no one wants that anymore.

He actually represents the part of story that practically no one but a select few were actually nostalgic for, and now in WoD we're having to deal with all of that shit again.

Of course, from what I can see, no one seems to think that the Iron Horde is really badass or anything. There's no admiration for them even as awesome villains. They don't seem to be regarded as properly "cool" or anything. They're just seen as a bunch of one-dimensional Garrosh clones.

I don't even see people asking for the Iron Horde's architecture or weaponry. No one is demanding their stuff. When the Trolls come by, there's always a bunch of people who wished they had their same crap, and they typically get some level of sympathy for trying to take back what was theirs.

From what I can see, the Iron Horde doesn't even have that. The Mogu and Mantid get far more sympathy, admiration, and approval than the Iron Horde.

So. I guess the situation is simply this. Garrosh was created to be an ideal Orc, but the ideal he was based on is one that people have long ago grown bored of. It was Warcraft III's breaking from that mold that helped make them interesting again.
Not just that it's because there are two sides of telling the story of the Orcs, Tolkien vs. Metzen. Tolkien is Orcs are MUH HAH HAH HAH evil, and Metzen is not. If I were to tell someone who never played WoW who the Iron Horde was he might like it if he was a LOTR buff, but it becomes more nuanced and critical the moment you analyze the lore.

And people don't even care about the Iron Horde. It's not even something like Joffrey where people hate because we're "supposed" to hate them. They're unremarkable to say the least because the Tolkien cliche has been repeated. The Mogu and Mantid are very intresting. The Mogu have a twisted view of society but it is easy to see why Lei Shen became the monster that society fears. The Mantid, well we've had insect villains since the dawn of time but their characterization was unique.

And we don't even give rationale to the Iron Horde despite Blizzard promises. They chose to make the Iron Horde evil for the sake of evil. Blizzard said that the Warlords would be contextualized in WOD, it hasn't happened. All the preview I have seen is "Iron Horde bad, go kill them". You see, WOD is a good place to give him and the Warlords contextualization with the implication orcs in Draenor was in conflict and always needed an enemy, and by uniting them against everything else, it created unity. The Primals and the Breakers could drive the impetus to conquer other worlds, to control the elements, to leave this unstable world behind. This could be an intresting clash between the ""good orc" and the "savage orc", with the savage orc having his own story to tell, one of pragmatism and precived necessary evils.

This would have worked because the Iron Horde's villany would be given context and it would be a fresh take on an old genere. I said Char being a villain in CCA is baffling, it didn't flow well transitioning from Zeta, ZZ to CCA, but he had contexualization. In his mind as long as there are Oldtypes, there will always be discrimination against Newtypes from Oldtypes, and discrimination against Oldtypes by Newtypes and tyrannical groups such as Jamitov and Scirocco's Titan Army and Gihren's Zeonic Empire will exist promoting hatred of the other group. As Oldtypes cannot evolve into Newtypes unless they head into space, Char thinks he is simply trying to speed up the delayed evolution of humanity.
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Old 07-29-2014, 09:54 AM
Westlee Westlee is offline
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tldr

Garrosh wasn't a villain.
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Old 07-29-2014, 09:59 AM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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tldr

Garrosh could have had good character development as either a hero or a villain, but Blizzard ruined it with its inconsistent writing
Fixed
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So instead of seeing this as a continuation of an era of the 20th century that gave us so much debt and destruction and undermined our liberties and conditions today that are so dangerous, let us think that we are now moving into a new era, a new era where we are going to concentrate on liberty and freedom and property rights and peace. I believe that is the cause that we should lead and I thank you very much for being part of it.~Ron Paul
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Old 07-29-2014, 11:08 AM
GenyaArikado GenyaArikado is offline

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Its funny, the "using a mass destruction weapon to spare loses and save lives" is actually Sylvanas thing. Garrosh threw the Horde at Theramore knowing they'd be massacred (and they were) and then used the manabomb
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Old 07-29-2014, 11:36 AM
Westlee Westlee is offline
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Its funny, the "using a mass destruction weapon to spare loses and save lives" is actually Sylvanas thing. Garrosh threw the Horde at Theramore knowing they'd be massacred (and they were) and then used the manabomb
1.) The Horde has a stick up their butt about dying gloriously in battle.

2.) That's known as a "feint" a tactic to draw an opponent out so you can stomp them Usually there is an element of risk with it, but it is a good tactic none the less.

Honestly, the Horde's conduct during the war was not that horrible. Nor were their reasons for going to war.

No, the problem with the Horde is that they're a bunch of two-faced, unrepentant assholes that pretend to be victims. If they weren't a bunch of whiny, lying, bitches I might even be able to like them as a villain faction, but the fact that they insist that they're "good" instead of admitting that they're all unapologetic bastards and running with it angers me to no end. Made all the worse by the legions of fans that buy into the Horde's bullshit.
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Old 07-29-2014, 12:06 PM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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1.) The Horde has a stick up their butt about dying gloriously in battle.

2.) That's known as a "feint" a tactic to draw an opponent out so you can stomp them Usually there is an element of risk with it, but it is a good tactic none the less.

Honestly, the Horde's conduct during the war was not that horrible. Nor were their reasons for going to war.

No, the problem with the Horde is that they're a bunch of two-faced, unrepentant assholes that pretend to be victims. If they weren't a bunch of whiny, lying, bitches I might even be able to like them as a villain faction, but the fact that they insist that they're "good" instead of admitting that they're all unapologetic bastards and running with it angers me to no end. Made all the worse by the legions of fans that buy into the Horde's bullshit.
No it's just because the Garrosh Horde is uncompelling. A lot of villains are good because of their hypocrisy because it highlights that they dont think themselves as bad. What's wrong with that from a narrative prespective?
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Old 07-29-2014, 12:30 PM
Arashi Arashi is offline

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Everyone by now should know by now that Garrosh is just the fall guy to make red and blue look good.

Why do you think the mists of nothing happens ending and werrr crimes was such colossal pile of shit?
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Old 07-29-2014, 12:37 PM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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I wish people would actually read this, they can understand some of the shitty writing and what SHOULD have been done.
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So instead of seeing this as a continuation of an era of the 20th century that gave us so much debt and destruction and undermined our liberties and conditions today that are so dangerous, let us think that we are now moving into a new era, a new era where we are going to concentrate on liberty and freedom and property rights and peace. I believe that is the cause that we should lead and I thank you very much for being part of it.~Ron Paul
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Old 07-29-2014, 01:00 PM
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No it's just because the Garrosh Horde is uncompelling. A lot of villains are good because of their hypocrisy because it highlights that they dont think themselves as bad. What's wrong with that from a narrative prespective?
The problem is the narrative does a thorough job trying to portray the Horde as not being bad, warts and all, and people eat it up.

When you have the Sith and the Mandalorians from Star Wars being portrayed, yeah, they're bad. And they even have beliefs and reasoning for things they do, they might even get into tongue-in-cheek arguments with the good guys about their differences, but the authors never try to pretend they're good, and fans generally accept that those guys are bad, but they're cool and fun bad guys and they run with it.

With the Horde though? They are frequently excused. They are hailed as heroes. It's never their fault, and they never have to answer for anything. And the worst thing is there is no one in the story that acknowledges this! The Horde get to be a bunch of huge hypocritical jerks, and no one says a word against them!

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I wish people would actually read this, they can understand some of the shitty writing and what SHOULD have been done.
It's too long a read for something that's been discussed a lot already. The chances of you actually providing an original point are slim to none.
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Old 07-29-2014, 01:19 PM
Arashi Arashi is offline

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I wish people would actually read this, they can understand some of the shitty writing and what SHOULD have been done.
Don't worry. I actually read it. Unfortunately I'm tired of most stories in the world being centered around villains. it's just that when it comes to Garrosh, the ship has totally sailed in terms of character development. There could be some possibility of a Garrosh story for Edgelords of Draenor as a way of comparing the main timeline draenor and the alternate timeline one.

I think Garrosh was doomed at the start. I feel like he was probably created as a foil to thrall and Varian.

He had an ideal to secure a future for his people and went through with it in the way he felt was best which was taking it for themselves and stomping everything in the way. Obviously that fact was not conveyed in a proper way. That is mainly due to negative reception from, again, Hordies have it in mind that they're heroes and "good guys" when in reality they are not. As well as game play and time constraints. There was no good way to show how Garrosh switched tactics to be more brutal and efficient due to the fact that the Alliance was resisting.

War being ugly is the other ship that sailed. It is something that would have been best told during mists of nothing happens and the Alliance and Horde don't pay an exuberant cost for their warmongering. The only reason i think that probably didn't happen was because no one cares about the guy who has the ideal to protect the innocents of war who didn't choose to have foreign armies wage war in their homeland. And game play.

Either way i think there is a lesson to be learned. You shouldn't build stories on the backs of antagonists, especially if it's done by Blizzard. At which point you're just asking to be disappointed.
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Old 07-29-2014, 01:54 PM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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Don't worry. I actually read it. Unfortunately I'm tired of most stories in the world being centered around villains. it's just that when it comes to Garrosh, the ship has totally sailed in terms of character development. There could be some possibility of a Garrosh story for Edgelords of Draenor as a way of comparing the main timeline draenor and the alternate timeline one.

I think Garrosh was doomed at the start. I feel like he was probably created as a foil to thrall and Varian.

He had an ideal to secure a future for his people and went through with it in the way he felt was best which was taking it for themselves and stomping everything in the way. Obviously that fact was not conveyed in a proper way. That is mainly due to negative reception from, again, Hordies have it in mind that they're heroes and "good guys" when in reality they are not. As well as game play and time constraints. There was no good way to show how Garrosh switched tactics to be more brutal and efficient due to the fact that the Alliance was resisting.

War being ugly is the other ship that sailed. It is something that would have been best told during mists of nothing happens and the Alliance and Horde don't pay an exuberant cost for their warmongering. The only reason i think that probably didn't happen was because no one cares about the guy who has the ideal to protect the innocents of war who didn't choose to have foreign armies wage war in their homeland. And game play.

Either way i think there is a lesson to be learned. You shouldn't build stories on the backs of antagonists, especially if it's done by Blizzard. At which point you're just asking to be disappointed.
Again you completely miss the point, if the objective of your post that it is impossible for Garrosh to develop in a way that is relatable to the audience and that he has to be some sort of hate sink. Not to mention the premise of this essay is: Garrosh was planned to be a villain from day one. It misses the point because Garrosh could have been developed better even as something for the audience to boo and jeer at, the fact that he may have been intended to be something like that does not justify character inconsistency. I brought up Joffrey and the ASOIAF/GOT characters that we love to jeer at because they were consistent, Garrosh wasn't.

And if by ship has sailed I AM aware its too late to recitify the wrongs made by Blizzard, I am just musing on how I WOULD have made Garrosh work as a villain.

And there is nothing wrong with giving antagionists backstory, just there is an execution, and Blizz either did it poorly or did not care at all. No one complain that Palpatine got a backstory, or that Gihren got one in side materials for Gundam, or that Milton wrote in much freedom in describing the devil over god.
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Last edited by xie323; 07-29-2014 at 01:56 PM..
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Old 07-29-2014, 02:05 PM
Drusus Drusus is offline

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Everyone by now should know by now that Garrosh is just the fall guy to make red and blue look good.

Why do you think the mists of nothing happens ending and werrr crimes was such colossal pile of shit?
Pretty much.
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Old 07-29-2014, 02:08 PM
Arterius Arterius is offline

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And as I said, he dosen't even work well as a one-dimensional villainous idiot whose only goal is to drive the conflict. Look at my comparison of him with Joffrey and see who is better written to be hated as a person. And I wanted to point this out as a testament to Blizz poor writing, which is the true legacy of Garrosh when there were much better ways to handle his plot.
It sounds like the gist of what you are saying is that Blizzard's handling of him was so bad that he's both unlikeable as a hero and unhateable as a villain.

It's an interesting concept.
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Old 07-29-2014, 02:15 PM
xie323 xie323 is offline

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It sounds like the gist of what you are saying is that Blizzard's handling of him was so bad that he's both unlikeable as a hero and unhateable as a villain.

It's an interesting concept.
No I mean that he was unhatable if you compare him to let's say Joffrey in terms of excecution. If hate means hate the character but love how he contributes to the plot or how he is written for us to hate him, I don't see it. People hate him because he is poorly hated.
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