WoW | World of LeakCraft
Another Blizzcon looms as we experience what will likely be the last major content patch of Legion. Where, then, will we be going next?
If the discoveries of the data miners are to be believed, Sargeras will soon be gone and the Burning Legion with him. What, then, do we have left to fight? Will peace descend upon Azeroth? That seems unlikely. The rumour mills are hard at work, spitting out fake expansion after fake expansion (which consists of recycling all the things that were suggested for this expansion it seems). Is there any grain of truth to be found in any of them?
Reality, or the machinations of the void?
Most of the so-called leaks have a grain of likelihood in them. There are two common themes that we have other evidence to support - the new level cap of 120 and the connection to the Old Gods. The level cap is a logical extension of where we are now. Apart from the brief flirtation with 5 levels, each new expansion brings 10 levels. Why change that now?
The Old Gods suggestion also has a certain amount of logic to it. If the Burning Legion has been finished off, then we need to look for new enemies and the Old Gods are an obvious example. We've also had warnings in the game that our actions might have unintended consequences.
Five keys to open our way. Five torches to light our path.
If you've been to the Emerald Nightmare raid, you'll know that one particular boss, Il'gynoth, is a talkative chappie who spends the entire fight whispering cryptic secrets to you. Il'gynoth's prophecies suggest, if you assume they are about the Old Gods, that in defeating one enemy we have opened the door to another.
The Whispers of Il'gynoth
Assuming Il'gynoth's whispers are not the rantings of a mad ... blobby thing, we have some further clues to what might come next.
Your coming was foretold in the rings. The long circle is nearly complete.
Whatever is coming is soon as our arrival is apparently a sign. And the circle? This would likely be the circle back to the Old Gods holding power.
Flesh is his gift. He is your true creator.
To find him, drown yourself in the circle of stars.
These likely refer to an Old God. The Curse of Flesh was the name given to a curse the Old Gods (Yogg-Saron in particular) used to curse their jailers, the creations of the Titans. It took what were essentially magical machines and made them flesh. Gnomes and Dwarves, for example, were originally Mechagnomes and Earthen. And Humans were originally Vrykul. The Old Gods are, quite literally, our creators. To find them we must find the circle of stars. More on that later.
The king of diamonds has been made a pawn.
This one is fairly simple. Magni Bronzebeard, King of the Dwarves, is now literally made of diamond and is the translator of the titan soul Azeroth. We know she is being driven mad by visions of horrors. The very purpose of the Old Gods is to corrupt the titan soul of Azeroth, and so, in their success, Magni becomes their pawn. Also, Magni suggested the Pillars of Creation which, if they unlock the Old Gods, means he has already become their pawn.
The lord of ravens will turn the key.
The most likely lord of ravens is Khadgar. Khadgar can turn himself into a raven - an ability that comes with Atiesh, the Greatstaff of the Guardian. There are other options - Medivh is possible, obscure raven associated lords being less likely. If the Pillars of Creation free the Old Gods, Khadgar, who hunts them and and uses them, has turned the key. So this part may have already been fulfilled.
The boy-king serves at the master's table. Three lies will he offer you.
There are some suggestions that this could be Wrathion. However, hes not a king, so this seems to be on the basis that hes young and vaguely important. The most likely suggestion for this is actually Anduin Wrynn. Anduin is priest, and, in case you've not played one, the Shadow Priest spec is most definitely filled with the madness of the void. In Legion the Priest class hall directly addresses this in several ways. All priests who use the powers of the void are put at risk by them. What if Anduin, seeking to fight the Legion, takes things a step too far?
Her heart is a crater, and we have filled it.
At the hour of her third death, she will usher in our coming.
From the earth, he draws strength. Our earth. Our strength.
Now if one faction hero can go mad, why not others? What about Jaina, driven mad by her losses? Or Sylvanas, unable to secure a future for her people? Or Thrall, having become the Aspect of Earth, being at risk of the same corruption that destroyed his predecessor?
Or, if one buys the Wrathion theory, one or more of these could refer to other dragon aspects and we could see the corruption of the dragons. And in reality, there are lots of potential choices for this. Azeroth's heart would be a crater if the titan soul were dead. Azeroth could die three times. If Aegwynn is not dead, she could die three times. Wrathion is an Earth dragon, drawing strength from the earth. The list goes on.
Its surface blazes bright, masking shadows below.
Could this be the Light? The Naaru, beings of light, can become corrupted into shadow. Or Azeroth?
N'Zoth, I journey to Ny'alotha
This isn't normally mentioned, but has he dies, Il'gynoth says this line. Ny'alotha has been mentioned before in World of Warcraft. Is is the sleeping city mentioned by the Puzzle Box of Yogg-Saron and by the shadow priest Artifact, Xal'atath, Blade of the Black Empire (which likes to talk to you, because madness).
In the land of Ny'alotha there is only sleep ...
In the sleeping city of Ny'alotha walk only mad things.
Ny'alotha is a city of old, terrible, unnumbered crimes ...
Sounds like a charming place to visit, according to the Puzzle Box. Xal'atath, however, seems very fond of it.
The city of elves pales in comparison to the sleeping city ...
Do not be impressed by tall icons of the titans which stand here. The towers of sacrifice in Ny'alotha dwarf these pathetic temples.
Further to this, Ny'alotha may well be the prison of the Old God N'Zoth, and may be sunken under the ocean at present. This would suggest that perhaps the circle of stars might be certain conjunction of the stars reflected on the ocean (could the circle be created by Argus appearing in the sky and blocking stars to create a void surrounded by stars?) And the idea that Il'gynoth will travel to Ny'alotha on death suggests that there is some kind of resurrection aspect to the city, at least for the old gods. Perhaps C'thun, Yogg-Saron and Y'Shaarj also can be found there? This might support Sylvanas being at least one of the quotes mentioned above - shes desperately looking for some way to continue the undead.
This is just my take on the Whispers and others suggest different things. But if the Whispers are in fact prophecy, the Old Gods are coming and this leads to our next expansion. The Argus quest line so far backs this up.
What else do the 'leaks' suggest?
Theres been a lot of talk about Kul'Tiras. Kul'Tiras is a human city-state and the original home of Jaina Proudmoore. Like the whereabouts of Turalyon and Alleria, this is one of the Great Mysteries of WoW. Since one of these has been solved, then perhaps another will be too? If they keep on saying it, one day they'll be right. The only other reason to suspect Kul'Tiras is the data mining of some Kul'Tiras leveling armor.
If Ny'alotha is under the sea, of course, Kul'Tiras makes more sense as a jumping off point. A kind of Dalaran for the lands of the Old Gods. Maybe with a sideline of locals being irritated by the rest of the world stampeding over them? And something piratey.
Beyond that there seems an obsession with Nazjatar and boats. Aszhara will rise to power again and ... wait didn't we do this already? I sort of feel that between Vashj'ir and Azsuna, we've fought Azshara a lot. And the suggestion of player ships really came about at the end of Draenor after we got the ship yard as a new version of Garrisons. We've established that Garrisons are Bad, so why would they create new ones now? Our run of luck with ships/airships has been pretty poor and I want to invest in one just about as much as I'm willing to invest emotionally in any remaining dragons i.e. not at all (I'm still bitter about Ysera)!
As a quick aside here, I don't believe that Ny'alotha or any other suggested underwater land will be an underwater kingdom in the vein of Vashj'ir. At most, there will be some kind of underwater transition area before you get into some kind of cavern/bubble. Or Ny'alotha will just rise up to the surface.
Then theres the attempts to find new races. Ogres, Naga, Murlocs, Centaur, Ethereals, Kvaldir, Vyrkul. Basically any race that has appeared in WoW and is vaguely humanoid. Apart from the Mogu. No one has suggested the Mogu yet. Clearly an oversight. Odds of any of these being true? Slim to none. None of the races mentioned would fit in well with the existing races. They aren't going to happen. I imagine we won't see new races unless they are new to WoW. The suggestions for sub-races are more likely and that would be a lot of art work! Imagine the sheer resource needed to make all historical armor fit Naga? The best suggestion is in the Black Empire leak where the new race is the 'Dragonsworn'. This is a Hero Race that starts at 108 - you select an existing race/class and Wrathion alters you to become part dragon. I quite like that idea, even though I doubt its authenticity.
Of course there are also new class suggestions, and new professions. We could see new classes or professions in the game, but none of the suggestions really ring true. Carpentry and Wood Gathering (Dark Side of Azeroth), really? Tinker? Um, don't we already have Engineer? Oh as a class? So you want to make Engineering a class?
When I tried to think of a new class for the Old God/corrupted Faction Leaders/Ny'alotha expansion, it was almost impossible to think of one that wasn't very similar to existing classes. Which then led me to think that an easier route would be to add additional specs. We see Alleria experimenting with the void - what about a void pet hunter spec? Or a pirate themed rogue spec with guns? Adding a few specs each expansion would have the same overhead in terms of balance as a new class, but with far less art/story required (no starter zone, just a simple intro quest).
Then there are the rarer suggestions. Veil of Shadows, one of the better 'leaks', has a few fun things.
- The Dragon Isles, an island of dragons that has been taken over by the Infinite Dragonflight.
- The Codex of Creation as a very unspecific new version of Artifacts.
- Faction Campaigns (whatever these might be).
- More trolls. Because trolls.
Echoes of Nazjatar also suggests a pirate themed open world PvP zone called Battle for Plunder Isle which could be fun (if it didn't sound suspiciously like Tol Barad with a lake).
What do I want?
I'd like to see the expansion I suggest against the Whispers of Il'gynoth where half the faction heroes go mad and the rest of us travel to Ny'alotha to deal with it. Perhaps Anduin and Thrall have to be restrained whilst Jaina runs head first after Sylvanas, neither of them realizing they aren't acting under their own volition. Thrall would of course volunteer himself to be restrained. Anduin would just start hearing voices like every other poor shadow priest. But thats not really likely. I also think Ny'alotha sounds cool, but again, thats more hope than reality. I'd also like pirates because, pirates.
But then I'd also like to see no new levels, sideways progression, no more gear inflation and several of the other things I love about Guild Wars 2 (like a dodge key). And more treasure hunt/exploration type content (as per Guild Wars 2 and Final Fantasy XIV). Basically, I want all the MMOs to merge into one giant perfect mega MMO.
What do I think we will get?
- Level to 120 (highly likely)
- Old Gods as the big bad (likely)
- Expansion of level adapting content (likely)
- More trolls, more Thrall (likely because this is Blizzard)
- Kul'Tiras (possible)
- New class (no way to know as it depends on the expansion theme)
- Pirates (who knows - pirates are cool)
- New races from the murloc/naga list (highly unlikely)
- Sub-races (unlikely) or hero races (also unlikely) but both more likely than freaking naga
- Personal ships (highly unlikely)
- Any kind of new/neutral faction or faction merge (highly unlikely at this point)
- Queen 'I'm never gonna go away' Azshara (please no?)