Who is Andariel, and what role might she play in Diablo 4?
We know that Andariel, the Maiden of Anguish, will play a role in Diablo 4, but what exactly she’ll be doing is still up in the air. The developers teased us with an image of her new Diablo 4 look way back in 2019, but in the Diablo 4 open beta we saw more hints that Andariel (and her twin brother Duriel) would be a key part of the game. While not available in beta content — where we could only play through Act 1 — she is mentioned as one of the game’s Challenges:
Challenge: Slayer of Anguish — Kill Andariel in Hardcore Mode.
It’s no surprise we’ll be fighting Andariel: we’ve fought her before, and if you played Diablo 2, you probably remember her. Andariel and her brother Duriel were two of the Evils who originally sided with Belial and Azmodan during the revolt in the Burning Hells, leading to the Dark Exile when Diablo, Mephisto, and Baal were cast down from their thrones and imprisoned on Sanctuary. This, however, proved to be part of the three Prime Evils’ plans for conquering Sanctuary, and by Diablo 2 Andariel and Duriel ended up serving the Primes — though whether they did so to hedge their bets in case the Primes returned to the Hells or out of sincere loyalty is unknown.
Ah, who am I kidding? They’re demon lords. Sincere loyalty isn’t even a concept to them.
In Diablo 2, Andariel — the only female member of the Evils — had corrupted the Sisterhood of the Sightless Eye, and took control of their monastery, which guarded the pass to the east. The Rogue character from the original Diablo was part of the Sisterhood of the Sightless Eye, but in Diablo 2 you must fight through the monastery, full of demons and corrupted sisters, as you chased after The Dark Wanderer. We know now that this wanderer was Aiden, the Warrior from Diablo 1, with Diablo’s soulstone embedded in his head — and Andariel guarded the pass so no one could follow Diablo as he sought to free his brothers. As such, Andariel was the first major boss you fought in Diablo 2. But Duriel wasn’t far behind: he was the second major boss.
The twins had switched sides, but originally Andariel and Duriel were just as willing to turn on the Primes as anyone. But when it appeared that the Three would return with Sanctuary in their pocket, Andariel — who as Anguish had always been close with Diablo — convinced Duriel that they should back the ultimate winning side in the conflict between the Evils. While the two have had an association with Diablo in the past, they also clearly want to back whoever is looking like the best bet: it doesn’t matter who wins as long as they’re on the winning side.
So whose side are Andariel and Duriel on now? Have they joined forces with Lilith, seeing her as a path to power on Sanctuary while the other Evils fight it out elsewhere? Or are the twins still lapdogs for the Primes, looking to serve their interests and as in Diablo 2?
This begs the question of what they’re doing in Sanctuary, then. We know that Andariel and Duriel will both be enemies to defeat, but little more. Andariel’s role as Maiden of Anguish might make Sanctuary an overwhelmingly tempting target right now. In the Diablo 4 beta, we saw Sanctuary’s people suffering, with bleak prospects for the future. It’s been 30 years since Diablo 3, but Malthael’s attack caused death on massive scale, and it’s possible the world hasn’t recovered. To quote the Diablo 4 World and Lore panel at BlizzCon 2019, while Lilith is the tornado on the doorstep, the Seven Evils are the hurricane off in the distance. It could be that Andariel, Maiden of Anguish, and Duriel, Lord of Pain, are here as harbingers heralding the Prime’s return.
We see a very brief glimpse of Andariel in the Rogue trailer, and it’s certain she’s not going to be friendly. Combine that with the Challenge for killing Andariel and other figures like her brother Duriel, and it’s safe to say that Andariel is likely to be one of the game’s major bosses, similar to Belial and Azmodan in Diablo 3. I don’t believe Andariel will be a world boss, however — we’ve seen gameplay against world bosses, and they’re massive battles, far beyond the scale of the clip we see of Andariel. That makes it likely she’ll be an end-of-act boss, whom we’ll have to defeat to progress in the story.
This could mean that Andariel and Duriel have joined forces with Lilith, but it also could simply be that as powerful Demons they’re using the chaos of her return to take vengeance on Sanctuary for daring to kill them in Diablo 2. But perhaps they’re never even in Sanctuary, and we fight them in Hell — the latest trailer makes a trip to Hell almost a certainty, so we could meet Andariel and Duriel along the way.
We still don’t know exactly where Andariel will appear in Diablo 4, or what her motivations are — but she’s definitely playing a major role. We’ll find out more soon: Diablo 4 is due to release on June 6.
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