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Old 06-19-2013, 05:49 AM
ijffdrie ijffdrie is offline

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Default Warcraft III Deconstruction

Previously, on the SoL forums:

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If they're going to make a new RTS, please make WoW non-canon and start from the ending of TFT.
As if TFT was so good? Damn all of the nostalgia.
In comparison with the entire WoW lore progression that gradually gets worse because of the poor interpretation of the faction war, I'd say TFT was great.
Seconded.

I replayed TFT and RoC several times and I can assure you the perception of them being better lore are not nostalgia.

Not to mention when I made that challenge to find plotholes and crappy lore in WCIII hardly anyone had anything to say, not even small stuff.
Now I feel challenged. Warcraft III did actually have a, in retrospect rather surprising, number of pointless retcons of warcraft II. Mostly, these are minor retcons, which is part of what makes them so weird, as they seem to be rather random and pointless.
Why did the map need to be rejiggled so that Alterac was moved to the other side of a mountain range and Stratholme no longer bordered the lake with Caer Darrow?
Why was Day of the Dragon retconned to take place after Beyond the Dark Portal, rather than before it?
What's up with one-headed ogres?
Where did the blackrock&roll orcs come from? Even with the completely out-of-nowhere reveal of the dark horde in WoW, these guys still don't fit in.

(Disclaimer: Ijffdrie loves Warcraft III, as it was one of his first games and taught him how to speak english. Dissing warcraft III in his holy presence shall lead to spankings.)
The worst thing WC3 did to lore was screwing up Draenor's geography completely.

Well, and the plothole regarding orcish demon worship too.

Why don't we make a thread to discuss it? Frankly, I forgot whenever C9 asked the question mentioned above.
And now, back to the show!


Seriously, what was the point of screwing up the geography so much. I kinda get Draenor, since it's supposed to be destroyed, so not much of the original geography would be left (until TBC came along, at least), but the entirety of Lordaeron is switched up for no apparent reason.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:07 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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Draenor was supposed to be DESTROYED, not turned into a single chunk of land with some little flying islands around it!

The wackiest plot holes, however, happened in the "Brothers in Blood" mission from the night elf campaign:
  • -The Watchers... Everything about them. Their forces somehow include human/high elven Mystics and OWLBEAR WATCHERS.
  • -For some reason, said Watchers imprisoned a poor wolf named Loki.
  • -Neither the Watchers thought twice about fighting the current head of the state, nor did Tyrande try to reason, or, I dunno, order them instead of attacking the mass security prison. ELUNE AKBAR!
  • -For some reason, Furion hates black dragons and is surprise to see any of them alive at all.
  • -For some reason, the Felwood furbolgs decided to choose the highly dangerous (and guarded) Barrow Dens for their new home, and were speedier and sneakier then the Sentinels in their efforts to find and open it. Furbolgs need none of ya Archdruids.
  • -"Bear gods". What does that mean? Why did a random group of OWLBEAR WATCHERS attack Furion? It's never explained.
  • -Everyone is okay with Tyrande slaying the prison's contingent and never mentions it ever again. Even Maiev has forgotten to say something regarding the total massacre.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:12 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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Even Maiev has forgotten to say something regarding the total massacre.
She said that Tyrande should be locked in a cage because she murdered the Watchers.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:13 AM
ijffdrie ijffdrie is offline

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How are owlbear watchers silly? They're a sentient species and allies of the night elves.

And I was under the impression that the bear god owlbears and the watcher owlbears were two different factions.

The black dragon thing is likely a reference to a line in Day of the Dragon that stated that Deathwing had destroyed his own brood.

I'll give you the others though. ELUNE AKBAR!
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:29 AM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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Well I meant if it had internal inconsistencies, that it changed WCII was a given.

So the only one that I feel is pertinent there is the one about the Blackrocks. And I have no problems believing that renegade groups of orcs hid on the outskirts of human civilization at the time of WCIII (think of the Warsong, for example).

Now what I am about to say may actually be nostalgia, but I really think that WCIII got it right. Any retconns or additions that were made were a good call since the end result was a very engaging and tight fantasy world.
If they had stuck with what they'd had at the end of TFT in WoW we'd be enjoying a much better story now.

Because it was a story that had moved away from the dull stereotype of "orcs v humans" and had created something very fresh and intriguing. Besides bring back the faction conflict in an artificial way another major fail of WoW was leaving the EK unwrecked by demons and leaving such a large amount of HEs alive when TFT led us to believe that most had become BEs. In truth those last two points are a part of a larger problem of neglecting past storylines, which incidentally people cared about much more than what we're dealing with now. Like it or not the inflexibility of Blizzard since WoW began, and by that I mean their unwillingness to change the status quo, had doomed the warcraft story. Everything is more or less stuck the way it was when introduced and people can't feel tension or get involved with the story when they know its underwhelming game-mechanics caused limitations.
Welp, that was my last post in the other thread.

Also, kind of a crappy name you gave it IJ, perhaps ask a mod to rename it to "Warcraft III Deconstruction"

Now, I'll give you the "slaughter the Watchers without any attempts at talking to them" though I disagree about the owlbeast who are, as IJ said, primitive but sapient servants of Elune.

The black dragon thing makes all the sense to me, given that Deathwing killed a lot of dragons and NEs (in the original WotA lore) it is reasonable that Furion, a veteran of said war, would hate him and his brood. A brood that was hunted down by everyone from that moment onwards.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:37 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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How are owlbear watchers silly? They're a sentient species and allies of the night elves.
1) They are just silly. It's like they lacked a model for the male wardens and had to use some random owlbears named "Elder Watchers".

2) Somehow in TFT they are aggressive beasts that slaughter orcish villages!

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And I was under the impression that the bear god owlbears and the watcher owlbears were two different factions.
The leader of the "bear gods" is an Elder Watcher.

In fact, the Owlbears are never referred to as such - they are only called the Watchers.

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She said that Tyrande should be locked in a cage because she murdered the Watchers.
Alright, she DID call her out on the murders.

My apologies.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:39 AM
ijffdrie ijffdrie is offline

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Obviously, there can't be normal male night elf watchers, due to the whole gender separation thingy the night elves got going on. It apparently doesn't apply to their allies though.

And in that case, yeah, the bear god thing is a little silly.

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2) Somehow in TFT they are aggressive beasts that slaughter orcish villages!
Corrupted Owlbear?
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:43 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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Obviously, there can't be normal male night elf watchers, due to the whole gender separation thingy the night elves got going on. It apparently doesn't apply to their allies though.

And in that case, yeah, the bear god thing is a little silly.
It's just... unexplained. The whole thing ends abruptly with Furion pondering on what did the owlbear mean - "Perhaps the creature was referring to the sleeping druids of the claw. But why would he call them bear gods, when they appear as I do?"...

And we never get the answer. Poor Mal wanted to be referred to as god!

Why did the owlbears attack him at all? All the Elder Watcher says is "You are unworthy to bask in the bear gods' presence!"

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Corrupted Owlbear?
Bloodbeak.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:46 AM
BaronGrackle BaronGrackle is offline

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Crossed Axes (War2)

I've actually played a little more, from the Rexxar campaign. I hadn't realized I'd be able to have a "Stormreaver Necrolyte" in my party for so much of it.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

You know what? We can argue about the merits and demerits of the Warcraft III storylines, but I don't think the story really is the strongest part of that game. That game sold so well and became so popular because it has fun, satisfying gameplay.

And so much STUFF went into it... so many triggers, so many customized specific units, such gorgeous cutscenes and fun lines.

It's a fun game, and it was unfair of me back in the day to throw it aside just because of its weak continuity. So what if there was a group of "Blackrock Orcs" just hanging out in Lordaeron by a "demon gate" still controlling "red dragons" over a decade after all the red dragons were freed while we have no idea where the demon gate came from or why Lordaeron never wiped them out during peacetime... don't worry about the story; it's just a fun throwback.

So what if the "peace-loving" Shaman have the same bloodlust spell that glazes an orc's eyes over and makes him battlehungry, the spell made famous by that old Horde that now supposedly worshiped demons and is a spell STILL used by the warlock-imbued Ogre-Magi in this very same game?

So what if we can't figure out how the orcs of the New Horde fit their entire population into a few human ships, clowncar style?

So what if the Order of the Silver Hand was reduced to only a handful of elite heroes instead of the mainstay of a good military force

So what if we act like the Nation of Azeroth doesn't exist, if we act like the Nation of Dalaran is a vassal to the Nation of Lordaeron, or if we have no idea what's going on in the other nations?

So what if that first Human cutscene (the meeting with Terenas) makes little actual sense, and the best way players have of rationalizing it is by saying that unaligned Stromgarde is sitting in--when you and I know that much thought wasn't put into it. It was still a really cool and dramatic cutscene.

So what if the motif of "defeat the evil guy by sacrificing your goodness and becoming corrupted" is used over and over again, for Arthas and then Grom and then Illidan? It's repetitive in terms of storyline, but it's a fun type of level to play through.

So what if the same game that decides a false-treaty ambush is too evil for Doomhammer, also decides that it's NOT too evil for Daelin Proudmoore? The point is, you get to fight enemies that ambush you!

So what if Gul'dan entered the Tomb of Sargeras with a group of Shaman, apparently? Or if these Stormreaver mercenaries often have the same spells that Shaman do?


It is a fun game; it's more fun to play than any of the others. I just don't think the storyline is a part of that.



EDIT: Why was Quel'thalas fun? It wasn't because of the storyline pleasure we had in High Elf neutrality being violated, or how it was all being done to resurrect Kel'Thuzad. It was because we saw Elven peasants and unique units!

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Old 06-19-2013, 06:46 AM
ijffdrie ijffdrie is offline

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I knew who you were referring to, but it could be that ol' bloody beaks was corrupted. Dem nature critters have themselves a real problem with corruption.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:50 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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In Digging up the Dead there is a sheep called Tichondrius.

The ultimate Nathrezim shall return to feast on peasants souls!
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:51 AM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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Well you made the counter-argument yourself Kir, they lacked models, it is the likely explanation for the issue of both the owlbear wardens as well as the HE looking ones.

It is just nitpicking if you ask me, I'd rather we try to find and talk about internally inconsistent story, or story that outright sucked. If we can find such in WCIII.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:55 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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Weakest part of WC III in a gameplay perspective was the Orc campaign. I hate those missions, they are way too long and the Barrens are unappealing to look at. Too much brown... Except the two missions in Ashenvale with Grom. Those are pretty fun.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:57 AM
BaronGrackle BaronGrackle is offline

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It is just nitpicking if you ask me, I'd rather we try to find and talk about internally inconsistent story, or story that outright sucked. If we can find such in WCIII.
Why couldn't Arthas figure out that Mal'Ganis and the Lich King were very beatable, without the evil sword that corrupts you?

After the Scourge went through Lordaeron and we see the cutscene of the Burning Legion encountering simple townsfolk and talking about how easy it is, where have Garithos's crew been all this time?

For the Horde: If Nazi Germany is evil, then how can Hitler be noble? That's a headscratcher that still haunts Warcraft's orc lore to this very day.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:58 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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Well you made the counter-argument yourself Kir, they lacked models, it is the likely explanation for the issue of both the owlbear wardens as well as the HE looking ones.

It is just nitpicking if you ask me, I'd rather we try to find and talk about internally inconsistent story, or story that outright sucked. If we can find such in WCIII.
I think only Baron can definitely find such moments. Me, I was searching for plotholes - what was left in plot, but never explained.

Stuff like Azsune and the whole ancient skeleton complex under Stonetalon mountain... Stuff like the Ogre Legion... The Fel Orc leaders of Alterac Blackrocks... Stuff that you need to heavily handwave to explain and fit together with the rest of the lore.

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So what if the Order of the Silver Hand was reduced to only a handful of elite heroes instead of the mainstay of a good military force
Wait, that's definitely incorrect. Arthas's missions specifically feature a "Silver Hand" faction that consists of Uther and his large companies of knights. They are definitely meant to be a large group, that leaves with Uther only when Arthas goes Stratholme.

It was the TOD novelization that turned Silver Hand into a dozen of unique paladins - WC3 had them as lightblue-colored knights with pally officers.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:01 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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I always assumed Azsune was turned to stone by a uhh Highborne mage! Maybe he was jealous, maybe she cheated on him. I don't know

Wait, she called herself a princess. Maybe Azshara cursed her.

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Old 06-19-2013, 07:12 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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I always assumed Azsune was turned to stone by a uhh Highborne mage! Maybe he was jealous, maybe she cheated on him. I don't know

Wait, she called herself a princess. Maybe Azshara cursed her.
See, that's what I meant by "fan handwaving".

By the way, Tyrande was ALSO called a princess in the manual.

INTERESTINGLY, references to some dark presence under the Maelstorm has been around since ROC's manual! Here we go, Mutant Murlocs:
Though Murlocs abound along the rugged coastal regions of Kalimdor, there is a mutant strain of the race that has emerged in recent months. Though it is unclear what has caused the creature’s strange mutations, many agree that something dark and sinister is awakening deep beneath the raging Maelstrom. The mutant Murlocs have been so corrupted that they have been known to turn on their own brethren under duress.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:17 AM
BaronGrackle BaronGrackle is offline

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Wait, that's definitely incorrect. Arthas's missions specifically feature a "Silver Hand" faction that consists of Uther and his large companies of knights. They are definitely meant to be a large group, that leaves with Uther only when Arthas goes Stratholme.

It was the TOD novelization that turned Silver Hand into a dozen of unique paladins - WC3 had them as lightblue-colored knights with pally officers.
Right... I said that wrong. I was using "Order of the Silver Hand" interchangeably with "Paladin", which was not the case at this point.

Is Warcraft III the only version of continuity in which the Order of the Silver Hand has non-paladin membership? Standard knights, etc.? The Silver Hand in Warcraft III is a large group indeed, but only a few of them are paladins.

TOD novelization didn't change the paladins to a few dozen. They only took out the non-paladin membership, which had more or less already happened by WoW methinks. But by WoW, there were a lot more player and PC paladins running around, yeah?
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:18 AM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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Why couldn't Arthas figure out that Mal'Ganis and the Lich King were very beatable, without the evil sword that corrupts you?

After the Scourge went through Lordaeron and we see the cutscene of the Burning Legion encountering simple townsfolk and talking about how easy it is, where have Garithos's crew been all this time?

For the Horde: If Nazi Germany is evil, then how can Hitler be noble? That's a headscratcher that still haunts Warcraft's orc lore to this very day.
Mal'Ganis was very much unbeatable and the feel we are given is that Arthas' forces are at the brink, only one hope remains now (since he torched the ships preventing even a retreat). You are just overthinking game mechanics and being a bit obstinate.

Garithos was presumably hiding under a rock somewhere, it is not that hard to imagine. Not only that but it is likely he only gathered more people, small bands of surviving soldiers, after the demons took off to Kalimdor. Meaning these small bands had an easier time hiding then a bigass army.
Note this is from a WCIII "demons trashed everything" perspective since I am trying to limit my arguments to be self contained in the WCIII era, if we include WoW then it can be easily said he and his dudes were south when shit went down in the north (the only wrecked part in newer lore).

Who says Doomhammer is noble?
The orcs? So what, this is the equivalent, to continue your analogy, of Nazi Germany continuing to exist as a state, as a nation, and of course they would deny the evil of their former leader and his troops. There would be a lot of whitewashing, kinda like what happened in Japan and Croatia, where horrible WWII warcriminals are hailed and honored as heroes.
Doesn't make those people, and Hitler, any less evil objectively. Orcs are just subjective there, such subjective PoVs are what makes an engaging morally ambiguous story.

PS. Will get on with my answers to Kir immediately after this, splitting into two bits for brevity.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:22 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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I think this is just Baron bitching about WC III for the sake of not being WC II.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:24 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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Right... I said that wrong. I was using "Order of the Silver Hand" interchangeably with "Paladin", which was not the case at this point.

Is Warcraft III the only version of continuity in which the Order of the Silver Hand has non-paladin membership? Standard knights, etc.? The Silver Hand in Warcraft III is a large group indeed, but only a few of them are paladins.

TOD novelization didn't change the paladins to a few dozen. They only took out the non-paladin membership, which had more or less already happened by WoW methinks. But by WoW, there were a lot more player and PC paladins running around, yeah?
Somehow I think the knights were supposed to represent "random paladins".

In fact, looking at the "Bandit Lord" unit and its abilities, I speculate it was originally going to be an upgrade for knights (like trolls got back their berserker upgrade in TFT), but was scrapped for being too overpowered and ruining the balance.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:27 AM
C9H20 C9H20 is offline

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Stuff like Azsune and the whole ancient skeleton complex under Stonetalon mountain... Stuff like the Ogre Legion... The Fel Orc leaders of Alterac Blackrocks... Stuff that you need to heavily handwave to explain and fit together with the rest of the lore.
The Aszune thing, it is not valid criticism because that was new lore then, it WAS the ploothook then. That it got dropped or outright ignored is an issue, but with WoW for not picking it up, not with WCIII for creating it.

I don't get the Ogre Legion thing. What are you referring to exactly?

Also, a bit of a bother but can you verify that the "Fel orc" Blademasters from Alterac in fact do Chaos Damage. If not it can be said they are just orcs who painted themselves red to look intimidating. Preferably with a screenshot.
Not to mention that they can be explained as particularly deadly Blademasters (to account for Chaos damage), or those who were just that much more exposed to Fel, which also makes sense since Blademasters were originally from the Burning Blade Clan, a clan of orcs who OD'ed on Fel.

Now you'd call that a handwave, but I have no problem with that. I have a problem when we CAN'T handwave something. When lore A exists and lore B exists and those two just can't coexist, that is when I call shenanigans.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:30 AM
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I knew who you were referring to, but it could be that ol' bloody beaks was corrupted. Dem nature critters have themselves a real problem with corruption.
That's what I think too. I mean, Maiev had to kill Wildkin that had gone mad just because Illidan walked by. A demonic invasion must have driven plenty of them mad.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:31 AM
BaronGrackle BaronGrackle is offline

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Mal'Ganis was very much unbeatable and the feel we are given is that Arthas' forces are at the brink, only one hope remains now (since he torched the ships preventing even a retreat). You are just overthinking game mechanics and being a bit obstinate.
If Mal'Ganis and the other dreadlords really were unbeatable, then the idiot ball falls to the Burning Legion.

Why didn't the Legion have dreadlords leading the charge? Arthas corrupted himself to kill Mal'Ganis, and Illidan corrupted himself to kill Tichondrius. How were the mortal forces able to kill any other dreadlords? We know from cutscenes that there were several others. Why didn't they play a role?

Either the dreadlords were very beatable through ordinary means, or the Legion was stupid for not utilizing them on the front lines.

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Garithos was presumably hiding under a rock somewhere, it is not that hard to imagine. Not only that but it is likely he only gathered more people, small bands of surviving soldiers, after the demons took off to Kalimdor. Meaning these small bands had an easier time hiding then a bigass army.
Note this is from a WCIII "demons trashed everything" perspective since I am trying to limit my arguments to be self contained in the WCIII era, if we include WoW then it can be easily said he and his dudes were south when shit went down in the north (the only wrecked part in newer lore).
That's the handwave for explaining why Garithos's forces didn't exist in Reign of Chaos. In Reign of Chaos, Lordaeron and who knows what else was presumed overrun by the Scourge and the Legion, with the real resistance fleeing to Kalimdor. That's why Tichondrius and Mannoroth are able to chitchat about how there isn't any real resistance, other than the Villagers we see butchered.

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Who says Doomhammer is noble?
The orcs?
Yes, 1000 times yes! To this day, it remains the largest and most mind-boggling conundrum of the New Horde. And it started with this very game.

Quote:
So what, this is the equivalent, to continue your analogy, of Nazi Germany continuing to exist as a state, as a nation, and of course they would deny the evil of their former leader and his troops. There would be a lot of whitewashing, kinda like what happened in Japan and Croatia, where horrible WWII warcriminals are hailed and honored as heroes.
Doesn't make those people, and Hitler, any less evil objectively. Orcs are just subjective there, such subjective PoVs are what makes an engaging morally ambiguous story.
No, it's not Nazi Germany continuing to exist and trying to justify itself. It's the equivalent of regular Germany continuing to exist, of hating and repenting of its Nazi past, but simultaneously raising Hitler as a great historic leader.

The Nuremberg Trials are famous for confirming that ordinary soldiers are still responsible for their evil actions, even if those actions were done under orders. Thrall's Horde of Warcraft III adds an interesting corollary to this... in that a leader is not responsible for the evil actions of his ordinary soldiers, even if he was the one who ordered those actions.

Orgrim Doomhammer is the single largest logic hole of the New Horde. And in Warcraft III, it wasn't just a misguided orcish opinion. It was the developers' opinion. And this made it a reality of the universe.

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Originally Posted by Kir the Wizard View Post
Somehow I think the knights were supposed to represent "random paladins".

In fact, looking at the "Bandit Lord" unit and its abilities, I speculate it was originally going to be an upgrade for knights (like trolls got back their berserker upgrade in TFT), but was scrapped for being too overpowered and ruining the balance.
What about in Scourge Mission 2, which had more than just Knights under the "Silver Hand" banner?

Last edited by BaronGrackle; 06-19-2013 at 07:36 AM..
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:32 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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Originally Posted by Nazja View Post
That's what I think too. I mean, Maiev had to kill Wildkin that had gone mad just because Illidan walked by. A demonic invasion must have driven plenty of them mad.
Considering Illidan's reputation I'm not surprised. What would you do if you saw the guy responsible for breaking the world in front of you, with an army of angry fish people?
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