Speaking as someone who has a distinct love/hate relationship with Blizzard’s juggernaut MMO World of Warcraft, I’ve always wrestled with mixed feelings when news of the next update or raid arrives with all the icy, calculated fury of Frostmourne being buried into one’s chest cavity. Few can argue with the simple fact that Blizzard knows what they’re doing and even amidst a recession has continued to keep millions of users subscribed and playing, even when other competitors have haplessly fallen to the wayside.
Thus, it was interesting to see a new interview from Blizzard’s Scott Mercer detailing the unveiling of a raid that will finally pit Alliance and Horde alike against the ancient beast that is Deathwing.
Warning: There be Dragons and Potential Spoilers ahead.
After going into details about Deathwing’s story arch up to now, illustrating that he is as badass and terrifying, if we didn’t already think so, as Blizzard has always wanted us to believe. Okay, cool. But, once you get into the real details of the interview, that’s when things get really fascinating. And speaking as someone who has a decided love for smaller raids, namely 5-man groups, it’s stuff like this that causes me to smile at the prospect of a renewed account.
From the Blizzard Insider interview:
Insider: Can you tell us about the new 5-player dungeons that lead into the Deathwing raid?
Scott Mercer: The short version is that the players are sent on a series of quests to recover the Dragon Soul artifact so Thrall and the other dragonflights will have the firepower they need to confront Deathwing. The new 5-player dungeons involve the Caverns of Time and require the players to go forward in time to witness a future where Deathwing has destroyed the world. Then, from that bleak future, they must go back in time to the War of the Ancients to recover the Dragon Soul and bring it back to the present. We’ve discussed a lot more details on the new 5-player dungeons in other interviews. They’re going to lead in directly to the patch 4.3 raid instance, which is called Dragon Soul. When the raid begins, the players have recovered the Dragon Soul artifact and arrive at Wyrmrest Temple to find it under siege by Deathwing’s forces.
The interview goes into further detail regarding the larger raid itself, even going in-depth as to what players can expect in the final stages of the ludicrously bananas encounter.
Insider: And the final stage?
Scott Mercer: Well, the interesting thing about Deathwing’s armor is that it wasn’t really built to keep things out–he doesn’t have to worry about weapons like swords and arrows. Instead it was built to keep things in. His body is this incredibly volatile mixture of corruptive energy and burning magma, so without his armor to hold it all together, he starts to lose it and come apart in all kinds of crazy ways. The final stage of the raid begins when Deathwing’s deformed body rises out of the Maelstrom to face off against the players in the final showdown. I won’t go into too much detail about this final stage, but I will say that it’s going to be unbelievably epic. Even in his weakened state, Deathwing still presents a major threat, and bringing him down will require the combined efforts of the players, Thrall, and even the other Dragon Aspects.
Regardless of his use of the overutilized word “epic”, I begrudgingly admit that even after years of throwing countless hours of my life away exploring and slaughtering my way through Azeroth, this actually seems like a worthwhile experience. From the original Warcraft going forward, the narrative of the franchise has always been exceptionally solid and interesting. I get a feeling this will be no different – even if it causes me to renew for just another month.
The raid arrives with content patch 4.3. The full interview can be found here