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WoWJun 25, 2019 1:24 pm CT

Azshara makes her big entrance in the opening cinematic to patch 8.2

Once again the folks at Wowhead have provided us with the cinematic to the latest patch, this time the first cinematic when you go to Nazjatar in patch 8.2, Rise of Azshara, which is live right now.

The cinematic has  plenty of story spoilers for how we get to Nazjatar and what’s going on. So rather than just dump them on you immediately, we’ll take a moment to let you back out now if you’re averse to spoilers before you get a chance to log in and see it for yourself.

Spoiler warning in effect for patch 8.2 — Rise of Azshara

How it all begins

The cinematic opens with Nathanos Blightcaller on the deck of a ship, with Lor’themar Theron soon seen accompanying him. He’s holding Xal’atath — perhaps using it as a sort of compass to find Nazjatar — and watching the sea in front of him intently. We soon see that the ships in the small fleet Nathanos is leading are being chased by a much larger Alliance fleet, led by Genn Greymane who is out for blood and demanding the Alliance ships keep up their pursuit.

Soon, however, we drive below the water and find our way down through the depths to the Eternal Palace of Queen Azshara, who is busy admiring her reflection and is informed that the fleets are above — the exact phrasing is “they have arrived” which implies that Azshara may well have expected Nathanos all along, since he appears to be searching for something — to which she responds Wonderful. Set the Tidestone, won’t you?

After her command disguised as a request is carried out, she stands and waits for the creeping darkness we can assume is N’Zoth to reach up to her, and then monologues to it — mentioning that they’ve both waited so long but at last it would see what she does best.

The Tidestone, placed in some kind of device, erupts with power and launches a tremendous beam skyward. It breaches the ocean’s surface right in the path of Nathanos’ fleet, although the Champion of the Banshee Queen does not seem particularly surprised by these events and does not really even react. Genn, however, does — barking orders, he attempts to prevent his fleet from being swallowed up into the vast hole the Tidestone has punched into the ocean. But neither the Horde nor Alliance fleets can escape the sudden gap in the ocean, and both fall into the waterfalls created by it.

Genn then awakens on the shore of an entirely alien and new place, and is confronted by the richly mocking laughter of Queen Azshara herself. The Queen’s voice drips with self satisfaction as her voice booms out over the land. “Welcome to Nazjatar. I’ve been waiting for you.”

As the cinematic pulls out we get a glimpse of several Horde and Alliance ships impaled on seething rock spires while a vast realm of weird subaquatic plants reaches out to the walls of water created by the Tidestone — the zone we players will be exploring.

What does it all mean?

The cinematic leads to a host of new questions. Why does Azshara want us there? Why didn’t Nathanos seem at all surprised — was he in fact expected? Is he making a deal with Azshara, or perhaps serving as Sylvanas’ proxy for some deal the Banshee Queen and the Queen of the Naga have worked out? Why did Azshara create a zone where surface people could operate so freely, so close to her own palace? How does any of this help N’Zoth — and is that really even what Azshara is doing? I’m ridiculously excited to see more, and I have to say I absolutely love the voice performance behind Queen Azshara — Laura Post, you’re doing an amazing job.

So yeah, if you haven’t already gotten yourself into patch 8.2, do so as soon as possible. It’s looking amazing.

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