How important is it to you that lore continues from one WoW expansion to another?
The story of World of Warcraft is one that continues. Even as the Lich King falls, Deathwing rises, and when Deathwing falls we find ourselves fighting the Sha, or the Iron Horde, or the Burning Legion. The Old Gods rise, and then, defeated, recede for a time, but whether it’s N’Zoth in Battle for Azeroth or Yogg in Wrath, there’s been a continuum of these threats over the years. They occur and then they re-occur, and their existence forms a through-line. The Ethereals debut in The Burning Crusade, appear again in Wrath of the Lich King, and then we see them again throughout the expansions including appearances in Legion and BFA.
It’s this continuity of story elements that makes World of Warcraft feel like a continuing shared world. Characters like Khadgar show up again in TBC and Warlords and Legion, giving us a sense of the familiar and the expected even as we battle unfathomable horrors and demon hordes. Arthas in Wrath was a call back to, and a continuation of, the storyline from Warcraft 3. This is for me at least one of the real charms of this game, the fact that the story and the characters continue forward and bring the past to the present.
But not everyone is going to feel that way. Some players could care less about seeing Anduin grow up, or watching Sylvanas’ journey and how she went from Ranger-General of Silvermoon to a Banshee, from a Banshee to the Dark Ranger, and from a single undead seeking vengeance to the Banshee Queen of the Forsaken, who she now appears to have forsaken as well. They just want to kill monsters and/or other players and the story is just a backdrop for them.
So I ask — which are you? Do you care about the lore continuing from expansion to expansion? About the death of Cairne Bloodhoof and his son Baine’s ascension in his place? About the journey of Garrosh Hellscream from alienated by his father’s legacy to a force of nature, his conversion by Thrall and his eventual death at Thrall’s hands? What does the lore mean, and do you care if it continues between expansions?
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