We were left feeling deflated if not a little bit richer after the Chromie scenario. A tantalising glimpse at being level 112 and also a story line that delved into what is going on with Chromie. Legion had been an expansion that gave us plenty of hidden things, from pets, cosmetic items to future happenings. One thing that stuck out was why the scenario just ended without a completion? Something more has to come from that story and it has to do with Battle for Azeroth. Once cant help but think that the whole reason we were given this little bit was because it set up part of the next expansion and kept the players interested in hanging around for it. But, what the fuck is it even setting up and what is going on in the next expansion anyway?
Lets start with the obvious. Old Gods, what the hell is going on with them?
We have been told that BfA is going to have an Old God theme. This has been hinted at all though Legion from our time on Argus right back from when you get artifact weapons. We also have the unfinished story that comes from the Chromie scenario where someone wants her dead and earlier than she is supposed to die. This is where it gets interesting and we have to do a bit of back story to try and find out what Old Gods are around and how they could be potentially interwoven into the scenario. It has been speculated that it is the old Gods that is the originator of the note (possibly writing it through someone who they have got their claws into the mind of) and that the points of time that are present in the portals are all points where if Chromie wasn’t there, the Old Gods would have ultimately won. With the fact that BfA is Old God based it looks likely that it is the Old Gods who are responsible for Chromies assassination in some way, more so that it being solely the Bronze Dragonflight or the Player themselves.
Back in history, at the points through the portals in the Chromie scenario were places that we prevented the Old Gods from being able to cause events that would allow them to rise up from their prisons and take over again. We know this is starting to happen in BfA because we got told in Legion, at the very moment Shadow Priests got their artifact weapons… But to truly understand whats going to happen we might need to go down the rabbit hole (or Maw) and delve into the past and also investigate the present for clues that may have eluded us.
One of the biggest clues given to us was once you collected the artifact dagger, Xal’atath, Blade of the Black Empire, if you were a Shadow Priest or just collected the artifact weapon for your second or third one and ran around with it for any period of time while in Val’sharah you would have eventually heard it whispering to you and at one point it said:
“The God of the Deep writhes in his prison, breaking free ever so slowly. You should hurry and defeat the fallen Titan… There are greater battles yet to fight.”
So, we know that the void is going to start a rumble in the future as this dagger has just told us that some shit will go down in the Old Gods (which we can take as truth as this weapon in imbued with void). Why warn us though? Or is it more of a taunt at that the Titan is nothing compared to what is to come? A Taunt seems likely as the Old Gods never thought the Titans were powerful enough to completely overcome them. But, we are also left questioning who is ‘of the deep’. We know they were buried but this directs us to a singular one that is known to be ‘of the deep’?
We know of four Old Gods, and also their status.
– Y’Shaarj = Dead
– C’Thun = Dead?
– N’Zoth = Alive
– Yogg-Saron = Dead?
But then there is a catch…
Due to Blizz trying to get everything in place ready for the worldwide launch of BfA the first raid information in there in the dungeon journal already and we can see that we are going to be attacking the underground research station of Uldir. In there, experiments on Old God blood led the Titan-Forged to create a new Old God called G’huun while trying to find a way to eradicate them. We are told that this research station should have had three seals locking the place up but now there is only one, this should be the God of the Deep that has been breaking free ‘ever so slowly’.
The journal also states that the messenger of N’Zoth is also trapped in there, waiting for the chance to escape but there’s more on him later. Seeing as we haven’t heard anything from G’Huun until we encounter it in this raid it could be assumed that there is no way that this one has been able to whisper to anyone and if this is the first raid of the expansion, we won’t experience it until we are level 120. This then makes it unlikely that we will encounter it at level 112. It is underground though, could this be the one that is ‘of the deep’?
The blade also makes some other revelations. One being that there is someone else who could have been classed as the ‘of the deep’ Old God. How do we know this? Well, the dagger tells us when Shadow Priests turn up to battle Nythendra.
“A great dragon, bent to the will of Xavius, who serves the Old God of the Deep. Instead of breathing life, she consumes all around her.”
The clue is with Xavius on this one. Once a puppet for Sargeras himself, Xavius was cast aside when he lost the fight with Malfurion, twice. His body was entombed into a tree that mysteriously survived the Sundering. That tree resides in the Broken Isles and it has been placed in both Azshara and also near Suramar, which due to the maps in the Chronical books, we know is also near the prison of N’Zoth. We know that Xavius is a Saytre and as such, a demon but his true master is the Old Gods, as shown in the whisper from the dagger when the Shadow priest faces Xavius himself:
“Xavius, running from one master to the next, scrambling for power, yet defeated again and again. The God of the Deep picks a poor champion? Or, is there something else at play?”
We have only seen N’Zoth’s messenger in the first raid so it could be that he is due to make an appearance in a future raid which is also hinted at by the dagger;
“It appears the prison of N’zoth is not as strong as it once was. What you see is a tiny growth of the behemoth that may yet consume your world.”
“Almost completely gone, as if it never existed. But the rift is deep and vast, and somewhere down there it stirs. Something has changed, the last prison weakens. We must prepare”
This is then coupled with the quote from the dagger when you are on the Broken Shore:
“It was here in ages past that the God of the Deep lost a great battle to the God of Seven Heads. But as was so often the case even defeat ultimately worked in N’zoth’s favour.”
These whispers being coupled with the first statement is that the God of the Deep that is slowly breaking free is N’Zoth rather than G’Huun. Even though we are told that the seals on the research facility are degrading. It appears that it is just due to age, rather than a deliberate attempt at escape.
Seeing as three of the four known Old Gods are perceived to be dead and the Titan-Forged created one is trapped unheard of in Uldir. Who actually is the Old God that Xal’atath, Blade of the Black Empire potentially came from and is it that unknown one that relates back to Chromie? Is it even part of N’Zoths messenger?
There is a tantalising unexplained issue of a fifth Old God being shown in the Chronicles 3 artwork. The known four are all shown with details that depict their history and/or prison but we have the four we know about and then a fifth unknown residing in the top right of the page. With skulls and leaves either side of it. Life and death? Light and Void? We know that shadow comes from light, there cant be one without the other so is this one the balance between the two? The Ultimate Old God who can manipulate both sides of the same coin to get what it wants?
Due to the dungeon journal being updated we know that the model for G’Huun looks nothing like this one, so it cant be him on appearances alone. Unless it suddenly sprouts a shit ton of tentacles during the fight…
The dagger knows there is another Old God but due to the revelation shown earlier that N’Zoth’s prison is the last one to fall it could mean that the elusive fifth Old God was never imprisoned or its prison has already fallen. Blizzard also confirmed that there was four active Old Gods on Azeroth, not that there were only four of them. However, the dagger doesn’t give away the name of this Old God, instead giving us this whisper:
“It is ironic that the weakest of us may be the ultimate victor. C’Thun, Yogg-Saron, Y’Shaarj, and… well. Only one would remain to consume the world, that was always meant to be.”
It is interesting to note that the dagger says may be the ultimate victor. It doesn’t say that whoever is weakest is the ultimate victor. Is it that the unnamed Old God is apparently still alive and well even if it is the weakest? The direct listing of three Old Gods that we know have fallen in one way or another at the hands of others shows that the Blade and the unnamed one are the last two that have yet to be conquered, it could be N’Zoth that joins the ranks of defeated or it could be the unnamed one. However, the refusal to name N’Zoth could imply that the daggers ‘creator’ doesn’t feel that N’Zoth is worthy to be named.
It’s common knowledge that the Old Gods battled each other for supremacy so maybe the ‘creator’ and N’Zoth have some bitter history. We have already been given a glimpse of this distaste with the comment about the N’Zoth’s poor choices in champions.
Which would also imply that the dagger doesn’t come from N’Zoth…
The whispers also discount the idea that the blade is a claw from Y’shaarj as it mentions that Old God as a separate entity, despite similar appearances, not as though it was actually part of it before. It also mentions the other two C’Thun and N’Zoth as seperate from itself as seen in previous whispers. The same can be said that it is not part of Yogg-Sauron as it has this to say about the Emerald Nightmare created by that Old God:
“To see Yogg-Saron’s nightmare in full bloom fills me with jealousy… and some pride.”
One thing that continues to divide players is the actual status of Yogg-Saron and C’Thun. They were battled and apparently killed. Or were they? The reason I placed question marks after their listings above is that we are given an insight into the size of the Old Gods and also what we actually face when we go into their prisons to destroy them. Again, the dagger has the answer:
“It appears the prison of N’zoth is not as strong as it once was. What you see is a tiny growth of the behemoth that may yet consume your world.”
This means that the parts of the Old Gods that we defeat are tiny portions of it. If Yogg-Saron is huge, then we see only a portion of it, the same with C’Thun, a manifestation of its bulk. This would also mean that we haven’t actually killed it. One interesting part of the encounter in Ulduar is when dealing with its brain. When you go into the portals, you end up facing the brain but it isn’t a solid entity, its spectral, like its it’s just a mirage. The void manipulates to get what it wants, so there is a possibility that the brain we ‘kill’ is just what Yogg-Saron wanted us to attack, not its actual mind. If we think about it, we essentially pop a spot on its skin and it suddenly rolls over and lets us obliterate its mind…? Not likely. Our fury, enticed by Sara, is allowing us to be shown what we want to see which eventually allows Yoggy to be left alone and heal his wounds… Wounds that we know he has as his blood creates Saronite. (Does this mean that Scrap-Bot is actually a tiny Void lord???? I have about 42 of them in my bag!)
That being said, while in Orgrimmar the dagger also tells you:
“We may face some of my brethren in this conflict… a prospect that delights me. Their power will be mine! They will pay for what was done to me long ago.”
Why are its brethren only mentioned in Ogrimmar? If anything, the brethren should be Void Elves surely? Are they some of the current Horde races the brethren? We have Orcs, Blood Elves, Forsaken, Tauren and Trolls. Along with the new allied races but as they joined at the end of Legion, it could not be known that they would be there by the dagger so they couldn’t be the brethren that will be faced. It could be the members of The Cult of the Forgotten Shadows of which was based on the teachings of Natalie Seline. The brethren are those that used both the light and shadow?
It may only be a coincidence but the worshippers on both the light and dark then strayed too far from the middle ground and ended up just using shadow. Due to the fact that the holder of the dagger is a Shadow Priest themselves, it could just be that their brethren are just other Shadow Priests. The holders of the dagger are themselves Priests that can use light but have chosen to just use shadow. The dagger whispers this in the Netherlight Temple:
I know the Naaru consider us horrors to be resisted. We do not share this view. They are merely beloved brethren that lost the true path. They will return to their masters… in time
It could just be that the dagger is part of the unnamed Old God. The brethren is the light, which would make the unknown Old God their master. The Old God that is surrounded by Life and Death in the picture. The mortal incarnations of Light and Void. But what of the ‘what was done to me long ago’? Is this where the followers of the light are going to pay for worshipping that which turned away from it’s shadowy kin?
If it isn’t in a prison then it may well be lingering out in Azeroth, or still out in the void. Could it be that the dagger is the only part of it that made it into the world, like a messenger to manipulate and get the light back so that its whole could get here once the light had returned to its side? This would link back quite nicely to the daggers previous whispers of:
“I long for the day our masters can truly pass into this realm. You have only seen fragments, shadows; the faintest of echoes. Ask the Ethereals what one of these manifestations are capable of.”
This shows that the dagger either is a messenger of sorts due to it’s use of the word ‘masters’ or that the unnamed one is a bigger boi and in charge of the other Old Gods.
We meet one of those Ethereals in the form of Locus-Walker and hes the only one in Legion apart from the trader who we can talk to. He tells us that he has control over the power of the void and uses it as a threat, showing us what a manifestation is capable of when pissed off with being poked too much about his actual name:
“Were I to speak it aloud, a thousand void portals would rip open and some very unpleasant entities would come looking to collect on old debts.”
But by all means, if you want to see reality itself torn asunder, keep asking about my name.
Here’s a hint: it’s an ancient word of power. If I whisper it in your ear, your mind will fall into madness. Still want to play?
Could he be a connection to the unnamed Old God?
We also have the dagger telling us about others paying for what was done and Locus-Walker talking about void entities looking to collect on old debts…
It also has some information about Alleria Windrunner. When you greet Alleria at the Seat of the Triumvirate in Mac’aree the dagger whispers:
“This one shows promise. The whispers lure her toward her fate.”
We already know that X’era was less than impressed with her for dabbling in the Void. What is her fate? It can’t just be her fate to learn how to use the Void as Shadow Priests have been doing that for years. Natalie Seline, a prior holder of the dagger from the First War, is witness to that. Does that fate end up being the void becoming too much for her? The dagger seems to think that it will only be a matter of time when she absorbs the power from L’ura;
“The caterpillar has become the butterfly. She is all but ours now.”
Which is a concern considering Alleria herself tells us:
“The voices are louder now. More insistent. But they do not control me.”
Locus-Walker has already told her that she can control the void as long as her mind remains her own but in the comic of the Windrunner sisters reunion we see that the voices are constantly telling her she needs to kill everyone and creating a paranoia that she acknowledges is a constant struggle to control.
It is interesting to note here that the void is telling Alleria to free him from the curse of the light but the blade is telling us that the light is a brethren that fell from the path but will be brought back to the ‘family’.
Is it going to be enough though? Do we find that she does succumb to the void completely and the Old Gods that are on Azeroth? The void is already planting the very large seed that the Sylvanas is a threat and goes nuts when Alleria sees her.
Is this the fate that the dagger speaks of Alleria coming back from Argus and doing something here? Contained within her the corrupted essence of a fallen Naaru, that was created by something other than mortal interference. It could be that the Naaru was corrupted by the unnamed Old God and this now sets in motion the downfall of Sylvanas? Speculation is rife that the undead are the only things on Azeroth that is unaffected by the Void. Does that mean that the battle in the cinematic is actually ended by Alleria killing her sister, setting in motion the ability for the Old Gods to finally usher in the Hour of Twilight? Vol’jin knew that she had to be the new Warchief after him for some reason. She wasn’t trusted but she had some advantage that a member of one of the first races on Azeroth after the fall of the Black Empire knew the Horde would need. However, the dagger also mentions that the Tauren of Highmountain are resilient to corruption:
“The tauren here are remarkably resilient to corruption, considering their origins…”
The Taurens believe that they were created by the Earthmother, who had eyes of the moon and sun but while they roamed the plains, some of them took heed of dark whispers coming from the earth which caused her to rip out her eyes in frustration and sadness, leaving them to chase each other forever across the sky. So in the past, some of the Tauren had fallen to the whispering of the Old Gods. We also know that Yoggy created the curse of flesh. So, if these new sub-species Tauren in Highmountain are now resilient to the whispers of those who gave their predecessors mortal forms, then it would be surprising, ‘considering their origins’…
This could leave us with the Highmountain Moose Tauren being resilient to the Void and the Undead being unaffected by it. Which may also be why Vol’Jin didn’t put Baine on the throne. Being a cow Tauren, he would have been susceptible to the Old Gods.
More importantly though, how does the Chromie scenario set any of this up, if at all?
Well unless she interferes and creates that paradox to prevent Sylvanas from dying which may then stop the Old God coming to Azeroth and in that way if the Old God doesn’t end up fucking up Nozdormu then it can’t… But for now, lets explore the Bronze Aspect and his involvement with the Old Gods.
What about that pesky Infinite Dragonflight?
There is the small issue that we don’t get to go to the Bronze Dragonshrine in the scenario though. We know that the attacks are being coordinated from the other shrines but nothing is coming out of that one. So is it because it’s being orchestrated by a previous/current Bronze dragon or are we locked out to signify that it isn’t anything to do with the Bronze dragons?
It could be that the writer of the note we find is actually Murozond. The corrupted Infinate version of the Bronze leader Nozdormu. It’s been said that due to the fixation of Chromie being a dragon and not the Gnome version that she is almost always encountered as coupled with the use of the word Whelp, it could be attributed to another, older, dragon getting pissy at her. We know we killed that dude. He even said that the loop was closed when we did kill him but we had to get sent into the distant future to do it.
To try and change the timelines to avoid his own death and he was previously aware that all the unfortunate events on Azeroth are due to a dark, unseen hand. He had become stuck in time trying to work out what was fiddling with the timey-wimey stuff (and this time it wasn’t just Blizzard) and how to stop it. Now, we have to assume that at this point he hasn’t been corrupted or at least not fully. When we complete End Time we are sent into the future so we are then able to go back in time to get the Dragon Soul. So perhaps the Old Gods haven’t been able to influence Nozdormu yet and maybe it is a hint that we might actually see what happens to him when he ends up stuck in the timelines?
The dagger also whispers about another dragon but mentions nothing about Deathwing, who we know was already corrupted by level 112 as he was also stone cold dead and at the bottom of a vortex, judging by the daggers response it finds Deathwing, much like Xavius, a failure in its eyes and vocalises this by refusing to acknowledge him:
“A powerful dragon could be a powerful tool. Alas, gone are the days of Galakrond.”
A Bronze dragon corrupted to be Infinite could also be powerful but not mentioning Murozond this ties in with the fact that we haven’t actually seen the middle of the Infinite storyline. We have seen the creation and also the end but nothing really in the middle. Nozdormu did a disappearing act but his fate and the Infinite plans were already well on their way as we saw at the trial of Garrosh and in the early part of WoD. Bearing in mind that we know that Nozdormu was eventually influenced by the Old Gods (even though nowhere actually states what one) The dagger doesn’t mention him as the most powerful even after his change from a Black Dragon to the Aspect of Death. This gives us the interesting concept that when we defeated Murozond in End Time, it was after we were level 112. We all carried our artifact weapons with us to the future in the Chromie scenario when we were that level and the dagger didn’t mention anything.
The only mention of Deathwing is from this:
“The fallen Aspect’s lair is near. He was the strongest of them, and yet the easiest one for us to corrupt.”
So despite all the destruction that came from him, the Old Gods do not condsider him powerful. Just the strongest of the Aspects. Which at this present time, still contains the Bronze and Red Aspects.
Coming back to Chromie, we know that she aided us in going into the future to battle Murozond and he himself had stated that if the timelines continued to be meddled with (by this unseen dark hand), then reality will cease to be. Which coincidentally is the same outcome if we get Locus-Walker to tell us his real name. With the mention of a paradox, could this be something that instigates it? Could the meddling be the unnamed Old God that corrupts? Maybe it is this that leads to Chromie to be attacked from all sides? Does she try and save the Bronze Aspect and end up fucking everything up?
Some things that do seem sure is that N’Zoth is going to be making an appearance at some point, we may see C’Thun due to N’Zoths messenger using an ability called ‘Eye Beam’ that produces images of C’Thun, there’s a fifth Old God and that Chromie pisses off a lot of people which is evident from the dialogue that was on the PTR but didn’t make it into game.
Everything seems… back to normal.
The Timelines are clearer. I don’t see myself dying anymore. That’s good!
There ARE a few things still bothering me, though… A whole lot of people seemed very intent on killing me. Demons, elements, undead, void lords… even the Horde and the Alliance! Why’s everybody so mad at me? I think we should probably figure that out, eventually but that’s a problem for the future us! Well, future you and past me. Aw, don’t worry about it. Time is complicated.
See you next time, <player name>!
It’s right about now that we need to turn the ‘What The Fuck’ bus back around and check that. She said in the PTR that the Horde and Alliance were out to kill her. So it can’t be the player who is the main instigator of her assassination, we are just the tools being used by someone else.
Due to the end dialogue not making it into the game, it may be that what she says could be disregarded, or its going to be added in later. Maybe it just gave away too much, too soon, for the developers so it was left out for use at a later date?
We have a tiny bit of dialogue in the Azure Shrine that may point towards the Old God corruption of Nozdormu and his then involvement in the time being blocked for Chromie.
Starting with the other ones we have different shrines that all have different issues which need to be dealt with. These are both Demon and Scourge based for three of the shrines.
Emerald: (the deamers have been restless, its been overwhelming) = Saytre (Demon) “Your timetwisting days are at an end, Whelp”
– Leads to Andorhal which is full of Scourge.
Ruby: (one or two stray ghouls come in but these are numbers we haven’t seen in ten years) = Lich (Scourge) “The fingers of death coil around your scaly neck, Dragonling”
– Leads to the Well of Eternity which is full of Demons.
Obsidian: Dreadlord (Demon) “Know your demise, whelpling, your timewalking ends here”
– Leads to Culling of Stratholme whic is full of Scourge.
So these three ‘bosses’ have been informed of Chromie and her timewalking ‘meddling’ at some point before we get to 112. While the scrawling doesn’t mention the Scourge as a separate threat, they were created by the Burning Legion so perhaps they are being lumped together here for ease?
It’s in the Azure Dragonshrine that things get interesting. This is the only one not to contain a Scourge/Demon foundation to the events within it or the portal it creates.
Azure: Voidlord (Old Gods) “Strange, what are YOU doing here?”
– Leads to Mount Hyjal which is being overrun by Fire Elementals.
First off, The Legion controlled the Scourge until they broke free. The Old Gods controlled the Elementals until they too broke free. So each shrine has a connection to its portal there.
We also have the surprise of the Voidlord at seeing both the player and Chromie at the shrine to kill them. Whoever it was that was the mastermind behind the assassination, the Void Lord would be safe to assume that Chromie was on top of the tower. The surprise at seeing her down here to battle it could be expected. However, It could also be directed at the unknown entity who pulled all the strings, a sarcastic remark that whoever should have kept Chromie from accessing the time before her death fucked up. This is more plausible as we know that someone messed with the timelines to try and prevent Chromie from being able to access the time before her assassination in the preceding three hours and forty-five minutes before her death. The Old Gods had corrupted Nozdormu, who would have been able to prevent Chromie from accessing the timelines (and she does comment that whoever is preventing her access has ‘done their homework’) but we also know that the Infinite have struggled somewhat with their knowledge of the timelines (which leads Nozdormu to get lost in them) and possibly that is why there is a small fifteen minute window that Chromie can access.
But what about the Legion being there in the shrines???? And the Scourge for that matter!
We encounter the Legion in the Shrines at level 112, a full 2 levels after we were supposed to have stopped the Legion on Argus. So where did the Legion come from here? We know Illidan is the keeper of Sargaras so has he also assumed control of the Legion rank and file and is using them to ensure that there isn’t an issue later on by killing Chromie?
The dagger gives us another answer though:
“Here you will see why the Legion’s invasion is ultimately futile. All can be corrupted, dreams and demons alike.”
Is this why the Scourge and Lich are involved? Bolvar should have control over them but we have been told that there is a complicated relationship between the Lich and the Old God Yoggy. Whereas Arthus resisted them it could be hed did so because he wanted to be the Lich King. Bolvar only assumed the mantle because someone needed to do it. Has Yoggy finally been able to get in the head of the Lich King and get Bolvar to direct his forces to the Ruby Dragonshrine to launch the attack on Chromie?
One last theory. Could it be us that’s trying to kill Chromie?
For this part, it has been interpreted that it is actually the player who wrote this and seeing as we go to the future where we are 112 then ‘we’ must have written it between 110 and 112.
But the part that troubles me is that if it is the player that has written it we have said that the Orcs and Humans are on our side. Except with BfA we know that Blizz wanted the Horde Alliance war to ramp up again as we have been far to friendly to each other for too long now. So, if were supposed to hate each other, how are we on each others side for this?
For the Orcs and Humans to be mentioned and no other race is also telling. There are more than those two on Azeroth, and it would be easy to include them all by just saying “the Horde and Alliance are on my side” yet they have been excluded in favour of just two races. Those excluded ones have been involved with various parts of history so it cant be that they were not known about, or can it?
The biggest bit that leads people to speculate that is is our own character that tries to kill her is that the scenes in the portals are at points where the player actually has encountered Chromie during levelling. Anderhol is where you have to assist her to kick Scourge ass for meddeling with time. Mount Hyjal and the fire elementals, where she aids us against Raggys forces. In the Culling of Stratholm she helps us to ensure that Arthas completes his genocide to ensure that he becomes the Lich King. Well of Eternity she was there when we got Mannoroth sucked back down the plug hole.
Due to the portals taking us back to those events t could be that our own memories of where we met her were giving us the time and place to try and kill her. But if that were the case, why would we need four attempts in the actual portals that are in the past and the forces that are in the dragonshrines as, lets not forget, the actual damage comes from the shrines, not the portals as shown when Chromie keeps dying trying to find out what is going on before we get the 15 minutes to save her.
Yet the note we find is seemingly written by someone who either doesn’t know that Chromie is a dragon or is needing to constantly remind themselves that she is. Would we forget that much? I mean, we didn’t have to ask Khadgar “who?” when he sent us off to help her in the first place…