Blizzard, for all their past blunders, certainly knows how to excite fans. World of Warcraft has been around for 16 years and if there is one area where the game never disappoints, it’s hyping fans up with jaw-dropping cinematics. And now, the game has dropped a stunning new cinematic ahead of the World of Warcraft: Shadowlands release.
The eighth expansion of the massively popular MMORPG is all about the afterlife. The new cinematic titled “Beyond The Veil” touches upon this all-encompassing topic on Shadowlands.
As players already know, Sylvanas has shattered the veil between the realm of the living and the afterlife. And despite how wrong it may seem story-wise, this also provides players with the chance to explore an exciting new world.
Unlike the cinematics in the game’s previous expansions, this new cinematic doesn’t have much dialogue. Instead, it is similar to the early World of Warcraft cinematics that awes viewers with stunning visuals that seek to tell their own story.
“In the Shadowlands, every soul has its place–from the path of ascension among the spires of Bastion to an eternity of torment in the depths of the Maw. Choose where your destiny lies,” the game says in the video’s description.
According to the cinematic trailer, every soul has its place in the Shadowlands. And the new trailer has definitely done a great job in showcasing the different realms of the Shadowlands.
The Shadowlands consist of many zones but there are only five realms where souls, according to their life experiences and affinity, could go once they depart the realm of the living.
The first is Bastion, where the Kyrian and their Archon, Kyrestia the Firstborne, reside. Souls drawn to service are taken to Bastion to cleanse them of their burdens and then ascend as one of the winged Kyrian. Uther the Lightbringer’s soul resides in this realm.
Ardenweald is where souls affiliated with nature go to rest. Here their spirits slumber in preparation for their rebirth, as Ardenweald itself represents the cycle of rebirth. This is where the soul of Ursoc the Wild God resided before he was sacrificed by the Winter Queen to preserve her realm following the Anima drought. Ardenweald is also where Cenarius recovered before his resurrection in Cataclysm.
Maldraxxus is the birthplace of necromancy and where the Scourge hails from. While the realm is filled with abominations and necromancers, it is not entirely evil. This is the realm where the souls of unyielding warriors depart to. Maldraxxus boasts the strongest army in the Shadowlands but is now in the midst of internal strife following the disappearance of its Primus. This is where the soul of Thrall’s mother, Draka, resides as a baroness for the House of the Chosen.
Prideful and sinful souls depart to Revendreth. Here, the Venthyr led by Denathrius, are charged with tormenting the souls and harvesting anima. They do this to redeem the souls and spare them from an eternity in The Maw. The souls of Garrosh Hellscream and Kael’thas Sunstrider resides here.
The Maw is the resting place for the vilest and irredeemable souls. However, they do not do much resting, suffering without end until they became nothing but a shade of their former selves. This is also where The Jailer, Zooval, is imprisoned.
Naturally, only a few souls ever come into The Maw. This is because Revendreth offers redemption even to the most despicable of souls. The machine of death that runs the Shadowlands has been broken since the Burning Legion’s third invasion. Now, souls are pouring directly in The Maw, slowly strengthening it while the rest of the Shadowlands grow weak from the anima drought.
The power of the Heart of the Forest in Ardenweald is what makes The Maw inescapable. And with the anima drought, Ardenweald has suffered the most. This is because it consumes more anima to supply the power needed to contain The Maw.
Adventurers, having an intimate relationship with the soul of Azeroth, are able to escape The Maw. This enables them to venture into the world of the Shadowlands further when World of Warcraft: Shadowlands arrives this November 22, 2020.
Featured image courtesy of World of Warcraft/YouTube Screenshot
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