Since childhood, I’ve always had an eye open for Blizzard’s computer games and the stories they tell. Some of them are amazingly well-wrought. Though I don’t play World of Warcraft since it takes too much time and costs too much, my brother occassionally does. Lately, we’ve tried to catch up with events in Warcraft since the RTS game days (and Lord of the Clans) by him playing through old raids and instances, with me spectating.
Some of our friends thinks we’re crazy for coming up with ideas like this parody End Times showdown, but it’s really a quick job to come up with the ideas and write them down. Perhaps we’re only hastily crazy.
You’ll be the judge of that. Below are another quick brainstorm of ours, outlining what could be done as an expansion in WoW, but could really be used in almost any setting. Quick to write, posted on some Blizzard forums in case anyone enjoys it.
We hope you enjoy it.
Concept Theme: A clash between forces of good (mainly the Light, probably) and the Burning Legion. Perhaps in the Nether, perhaps on some distant world, maybe Argus itself, maybe on a verdant world that may yet be saved from the flame.
Concept Outline: Various story arcs going on, as usual, including important character development and happenings within and between the Alliance and Horde. Some narrative action going on in Azeroth as usual. New content, new game features, the whole shebang.
The novelty here is the two overarcing stories going on while our heroes trek the battlefields and lands of some distant world.
One the one hand, you have the grand clash between good and evil, with new noble leaders and old alike taking up the sword to fight darkness. Cosmic beings (like Naaru and Murmur), Daemons, revelations about Titans and all that.
On the other hand, you have a wild contest for profit, as some Goblin and some Ethereal faction shows up to make huge profits, probably related to the Nether, magic and mystical stuff like that. These two rival factions will compete aggressively with each other throughout the whole game, starting as small potatoes beside the big light-and-dark-war show, but gaining in importance throughout the expansion.
The heroes work for both sides (gaining reputation with both), who tries to outmaneuvre the other and claim the riches for themselves. Yet in the end, the cunning Goblin cartel outflanks the Ethereals…
Concept Showdown: Through mighty battles, the united war effort for the sake of good and Light has almost claimed final victory. Heroes of the Horde and Alliance have stood united again to save the day.
Then, disaster strikes, and no raid boss is to blame for this.
As major celebrations occur following some great liberation of a city, temple, people or likewise important thing, the Goblin cartel (new for this expansion) generously invites the heroes of the war to a lavish feast.
Here, beverages are drank, dance is danced and merry is had by all. The feast is a rather lengthy one, and in the end, the cunning Goblins have embraced the heroes in a web of lies and manage to manipulate them through arranged tragedies and revelations (out in some instances and raids) into falsely discovering that the noble leaders of the offensive against the Burning Legion are actually traitors that will lead the Light’s forces into a giant trap and doom them all. One of the noble NPC characters are trapped in this web of lies and deceit, along with the players.
The Goblins convince the heroes to strike at once in a daring blow to topple the corrupt leaders of the Light’s offensive, and win fat loot in the process. Voila: End raid in the expansion. Now, the bosses are the very same heroes which you have followed and helped and struggled alongside the whole expansion, but now you are the villain while thinking yourself the saviour of all. (This is akin to the Venetians tricking the Fourth Crusade into sacking Constantinople, but without debts involved.)
The mighty heroes are not to be trifled with. Hardened veterans, noble fighters, schooled in mysteries, armed with magic weapons and the bane of the worst monsters around, they are a force to be reckoned with. They might seem pure, but they are also looters, plunderers, killers, arsonists, conquerors, tomb raiders and mass murderers like few others. They are the great and mighty amongst mortals, and thus they manage to lay low the very powerful, and utterly unselfish leaders of the Light’s offensive.
Nothing can stop the mighty of Azeroth, and at last they have crippled the Light’s offensive. The Goblins reap huge profits, claim the large resources owned by the Light’s shattered forces, wins the competition with the Ethereals, and laughs all the way to the bank. The grand offensive breaks down, more or less dooming the distant world to the Burning Legion, and as hordes of refugees flees through portals, the shamed heroes of Azeroth are amongst them. Behind them, the Burning Legion rampages through the palace headquarters raided by the misled adventurers. Alternatively, the heroes realize what they have done, and barely stops the Burning Legion.
Back home, some noble leaders (like Thrall or Naaru) confronts the fleeing heroes, revealing the terrible crime they have committed. Their lives are spared for the sake of past services, yet now they must redeem themselves and reclaim their lost honour in the next expansion…
SUMMARY: Players struggle to help good win a war between forces of Light and the Burning Legion on a world far, far away, yet are tricked by cunning merchants, a web of lies and their own greed into taking down some of the noblest leaders of the offensive against the Burning Legion. Morally dubious adventurers set out on a quest for penitence in the next expansion.
Some end raid boss ideas: At one early raid boss, the misled NPC character takes offense when the adventurers he fight alongside actually loots the corpse of a fallen, “corrupt” noble leader of the Light’s offensive. Seeing your dishonour, he fights you as the next immediate boss, and is slain.
In the expansion, a group have joined the Light’s offensive to retrieve a powerful artefact . This group have previously in the expansion argued for their right to the artefact, but the Goblin cartel or the Ethereals have convinced you they have no legitimate claim to it and/or that they’re not trustworthy. When that artefact is dropped by one boss and the heroes is about to loot it, this group of ninjas grabs it and rolls away from the hapless players, but unfortunately for them they roll into a dumb and brutish NPC character (maybe an ogre) who appears and squash them.
When the heroes ask him to give them back the epic loot, the dumb NPC (who you have made many quests for throughout the zones, and who you knows as a loyal and good-hearted friend, but with a maniac idea to possess the first object found on the slain) claims it is his, and fights the players as the next boss. Only when killing him does the mighty artefact finally get available for the raid.
At perhaps another boss, seemingly half the loot is stolen away when a Goblin traitor of the cartel picks up the sack and jumps through a portal maintained by an Ethereal. The players can save their plunder by killing him quickly. Reference joke to Diablo III.
Also, for a different instance setup: Players can either choose to do the right thing for the Light, and receive reputation and some markers that can be traded for stuff, or do the wicked thing for greed, and receive loot and gold.
Our little idea