The Face of the Horde

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I was going to make this thread a spoiler-ridden post all to do with what my thoughts of the new Warchief would be. But as I’m writing this at 2 in the morning of Wednesday and there’s still been no leak, I’m just going to HAVE to talk about the current one about to be dethroned.

However, I love Garrosh, I really, really do.

Sure, I want to obliterate him from existence with the drop of patch 5.4 today, but in WoW’s story he is so fascinating, and my only regret is that he wasn’t a villain for longer than just one expansion. We first saw him in Burning Crusade as a whiny, mopey runt. After getting a morale boost from Thrall, he went onto becoming the leader of the Horde’s military in Wrath of the Lich King and becoming a true hero of the Horde. In Cataclysm, we saw him rise even further to Warchief of the Horde, and while he was far more militaristic than Thrall was, he still had a good sense of honour – as seen in the Stonetalon Horde quest line.

In Mists however, his attitude shifted, and shifted rapidly. What caused this Orcish supremacy is still a bit of a mystery, whether it was caused by Garrosh’s recent recruitment of Dragonmaw and Blackrock orcs, by power going to his head, by the sha invading his mind or by any other means, we don’t really know. The cinematic for 5.4 is pretty badass, with both Taran Zhu and Garrosh both showing displays of awesomesauce, but it is pretty clear that the Garrosh we see here is VERY different to the Garrosh we’ve gotten to know over the past few years. In his defense, how has his life been through his eyes?

  • He had red pox when he was younger, so couldn’t join the Horde war effort due to being so ill.
  • Kargath Bladefist visited the orcs at Garadar in search of warriors to aid him. Garrosh asked him about his father, and wanted to fight with him, but Kargath ignored him at first, calling the Mag’har weaklings and not orcs any more, and they could do the Horde a favor by dying.
  • When finding out about his father, he found out that Grom was the first orc to drink Mannoroth’s blood, and this sent him into a depression as he thought that as the leader of the Mag’har when Greatmother Geyah passed away, he’d repeat his father’s mistakes.
  • Out of nowhere, a green orc tells him that his father actually also was the salvation of the Horde, and we know the rest. So Garrosh is left with a view of two different Hordes – the one Kargath presented him at a young age, the one his father was a champion of; and the one Thrall leads. In Lich King he challenged Thrall in combat, so even then it was clear that Garrosh’s views were similar to the former Horde rather than the latter.

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It’s great to finally have an expansion’s final boss to be a product of WoW but as I said earlier, it’s kind of sad to see his downfall and execution be in the same expansion. If there’s one thing I’d like to see from WoW, it would be for a menace to last more than one expansion. We have the Burning Legion, but they haven’t really threatened us too much since TBC. Blizzard said they were trying something daring and new by having Deathwing last for multiple boss fights, with Spine and Madness – why not have a boss that we build up as a villain over the course of two consecutive expansions?

What would really make good story in my eyes is if Garrosh ‘won’ or forced a stalemate in SoO. If we got to him and he ends up wiping us out Lich King-style, then walks off triumphantly while we’re ‘blacked out’… Or the fight stops at 5% and a cinematic cuts for the Burning Legion to interrupt us and Garrosh is forced to retreat with his True/Iron Horde. We’d then see him later on next expansion as the ‘big bad’ again infused with not just Old God juice, but Burning Legion blood too – it’d make a nice round trip back to his father’s roots at least.

What do you guys think? Should Garrosh have lasted a little longer as a villain, or is it his time to go this tier? Would it work for other potential villains, such as N’zoth, Kil’jaeden or Sargeras? Do you think it’s been effective to have WoW’s products as end-of-expansion bosses, as opposed to characters created in the RTS?

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