“Arthas” is going down…

ArthasWith patch 3.2 out, all I eyes are turning toward patch 3.3 and asking the ever present question, “So what happens next?”

The answer is simple.  We’re going to kill Arthas.

And yes, you should read into that.

We’re not going to kill the Lich King, we’re going to kill Arthas,  and my reason for thinking this goes all the way back to BlizzCon ’05.

Someone in the audience asked Chris Metzen if we would ever have a chance to fight the Lich King.

Metzen replied to much applause, “Yes… but come on, do you really think Arthas is a level 70 boss?”  Not only was this the first confirmation we’d get to fight the Lich King, it was also the first time many of us heard concrete word from Blizzard that the level cap would not stop at 70.

But there was something more to what Metzen said…As he continued to speak, he kept saying “Arthas” instead of “Lich King”.  And it wasn’t just that, it was how he said it, almost with a knowing grin.

“Arthas is going down… he has it coming…”

Since this was a “Lore” seminar, a number of us picked up on it.  The Lich King is, of course, a combination of two people, Ner’zhul and Arthas.

So no, I don’t think the Ner’zhul half of the Lich King is going anywhere.

And that leads to the real question we should all be asking, “After Arthas is dead, what is Ner’zhul going to do?”  The bodies of Fordragon and Saurfang the Younger immediately come to mind, but who knows?  A reconstructed Frozen Throne?  Probably not, since that’s a step backwards.  Either way though, with Arthas gone, Ner’zhul is going to need to inhabit something or somebody.  So what or who could that be.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 PopeJamal August - 2009 at 8:40 am

Without giving away anything, it was my understanding that certain events at/near the end of the new “Arthas” book might…contradict what you’re saying about the distinction between Ner’zhul and Arthas, or did I misread it?

However, going along with what you were asking, in my opinion, Ner’zhul jumping into someone else’s body right away would be ridiculously cheesy. He needs to at least go hide in a bottle or something for a few years and then possess some unfortunate antique dealer or something.

Hopefully they’ll put him on the shelf for a while…

2 CootieB August - 2009 at 5:09 am

I hope this is true. As much as Arthas has shown himself in Northrend and with the story line, I actually am excited to take him on (not by myself mind you. :P)

3 Dion (Earthen Ring - EU) August - 2009 at 4:24 am

I’m sorry to say for once this site is not following up on the lore correctly…

I quote from the Arthas novel:
“We are one Arthas. Together we are the Lich King. No more Ner’zhul, no more Arthas — only this one glorious being. With my knowledge we can –“. His eyes bulged as the sword impaled him. Arthas stepped forward, plunging the glittering, hungering Frostmourne ever deeper into the dream-being that had once been Ner’zhul, the the Lich King, and was soon to be nothing, nothing at all.
He slipped his other arm around the body, pressing his lips so close to the green ear that the gesture was almost intimate, as intimate as the act of taking a life always was and alwas would be. “No” Arthas whispered. “No . No one tells me what to do. I’ve got everything I need from you –now the power is mine and mine alone. Now there is only I. I am the Lich King. And I am ready” The Orc shuddered in his arms, stunned by his betrayal, and vanished.

When WOTLK went live Ner’zhul no longer makes us part of Arthas or the Lich King for that matter. Thus slaying Arthas would mean the end of the Lich King as well unless Arthas’s soul is added to the armor the same way it was done for Ner’Zhul and some other poor bastard puts it on thus becoming the new Lich King. But with the Burning Legion as good as defeated and Kiljaeden slain, who has the power to do that?

The answer would be the only Old God still remaining. The one causing the Emerald Nightmare and the corruption of Darnassus which this site has posted about.

And this is the opening for the Maelstrom expansion! With the Lich King gone we focus our attention to the last danger to Azeroth. But we cannon enter the Emeral Dream as non-druids.

So we travel to the Maelstrom to find and kill the Naga Queen Azshara the last remaining servant of the Old God that corrupted the Higborne and led to the Sundering of Kalimdor in the first place. If you remember correctly, Prince Kaelthas, Lady Vashj and Illidan were all pawns of the same Old God and the Burning Legion.

The Emerald Nightmare or Old God must be weakened now and after killing Queen Azshara we finally find the Emerald Dream gateway in the Naga Capital City open to us to defeat the last Old God in his own domain with the help of Malfurion and the Green Dragonflight. The Bronze Dragonflights and Nozdormu will probably be involved as well in some way. Possibly Nozdormu in the future became the source of the Emeral Nightmare corrupted by the old God and must be slain like Malygos in WOTLK.

At this point with Azeroth safe except of the minor internal struggles which threaten to start another war aka the Night Elf and Dwarven Civil Wars…not too mention the tensions between Thrall and Garrosh and the events taking place at the Battle of the Undercity, and the betrayal of his own people by Kael’thas. The world takes on a scary new form and thus led the Draenei and the Naaru we set out to vanquish the Burning Legion once and for all in their own dimension and the Draenei homeworld. Otherwise they would just regain their forces and attack once more, and everything would start over again.

And here we will probably get help from the formed now restored Guardian of Tirisfall, Medivh’s mother. Maybe Medivh himself? Or maybe Jaina Proudmoore has become the new Guardian, taking up the mantle of power after the defeat of her former lover Arthas and remembering the corruption of the once noble elf lord Kael’Thas?

After all that….who knows…

4 Cocles August - 2009 at 5:03 am

Thanks for pointing that out. We should definitely acknowledge that scene in the novel.

Bringing someone back to life (unlife?) is one of the easiest retcons out there. Now sure, at the end of the day, we could generalize and speculate, “The essence of the ‘Lich King’ survives to fight another day.” And you’re right, it could very well be the “Arthas” half (whole?) based on what’s in the novel. But Blizzard has been so adamant that we’re going to kill this guy, to have “Arthas” somehow live on would only result in a very large communal eye-roll from the fan-base. Revealing that Ner’zhul survived, on the other hand, would be much more accepted.

But like you said, who knows?

As for the Old Gods, remember there’s likely more than four of them. One killed, one fell, three living and imprisoned. It’s speculated that the remains of the one that was killed are in Dark Shore. The one that fell is obviously C’Thun. We just killed the first of the imprisoned ones. The second one is probably in the Maelstrom with Azshara, and the other is the force behind the Nightmare.

As for Darnassus, remember Malfurion warned them from the start that it would all go terribly wrong if the Night Elves tried to grow a World Tree for purely selfish reasons and without the blessings of the Dragon Aspects. So it’s probably not the work of an Old God.

And good call on the Guardian!

5 Dion (Earthen Ring - EU) August - 2009 at 6:52 am

I agree its highly unlikely they’ll make the Lich King survive, especially not in the form of Arthas. The maelstrom has plenty of enemies to deal with who confront the world with an even bigger danger…one not necesarily to the mortals with to the higher species such as the Dragons, Naaru, Titans etc.

So whats our involvement then you might ask? Well imagine what would happen to us without their protection!

As for the number of Old Gods, sadly the lore isnt agreeing with itself there. But yes it would seem 3 are still alive not counting C’thun. With Yogg-Saron gone, there is the one that corrupted Azshara in the Maelstrom, and one other. But I do not believe an Old God would reside in the Emerald Dream as a physical being. Thus my statement that the last one must the one responsbible for the growing corruption of the World Tree and the Emerald Dream.

It is stated in the War of the Ancients trilogy that the 3 living old gods formed an alliance. Each has their own plan to cause the doom of the mortal races that stopped their scheme to bring Sargeras into this world. Thus it adds up that one of them seeks to manipulate and destroy the Night Elves and here we have 2 ways it could be doing this. Going after Malfurion and Tyrande at the same time.

Coincidence? I dont think so…

So where would this 3rd Old God be hiding? In Tirisfall Glade ofc! The first place the Highborne landed after secluding themselves from their High Elf brethren. If you consider the reach of power Yogg-Saron has displayed in Northrend it doesnt seem too farfetched that his powers reach from Darnassus to the Eastern Plaguelands. The place where Arthas’ humanity was dealt the shattering blow in the cleasing of Stratholme!

Aswell as Tirisfall Glades was the lcoation for the Guardians. Maybe they were keeping him in check through their presence there? And maybe the events surrounding Medivh and his mother Aegwynn were the catalysator that allowed this Old God to corrupt Arthas in the first place? With them gone nothing is keeping its powers in check or it no longer has any reasons to hide or mask its presence.

Maybe the sudden plans of Sylvanas and her apothocary to create a new plague to destroy all life are thanks to this same Old God in Tirisfall controlling them in his sutble ways?

And even more who or what has been corrupting Deathwing? Could it be a 4th Old God thats still alive? And was this one also responsible for setting in effect the events that caused the first Dwarven Civil War, with the Dark Iron Dwarves? Or the plans of the Horde to capture Alexstraza in the Second War? Or the plans of Deathwings Prime Consort Sintharia to create the Twilight Dragonflight? Or the plans of Daethwings children to conduct their own experiments in Blackrock Mountain?

A lot has happened in the area of Grim Batol and Blackrock Mountain, it seems very plausible theres a 4th Old God there especially when you consider the novel specifying Neltharion hearing whispers that manipulated him in the War of the Ancients Trilogy. And considering we know that Neltharion fled the battle at Zin-Ashari, where an Old God is also located, and that it was an Old God that manipulated Neltharion into creating the Demon Soul in the first place.

Which brings me back to the point of the various Old Gods each having their own plans to doom us, yet working together.

6 Dion (Earthen Ring - EU) August - 2009 at 7:01 am

Short addition…

It could be that the events of Grim Batol & Blackrock Mountain do not involve a 4th Old God, but rather are the product of the combined stretched out presences of the Maelstrom & Tirisfall Glade ones working together. But then Deathwing would be victim to 2 Old Gods their manipulation making him thus the more dangerous. As a Dragon Aspect maybe that combined evil was needed to gain influence of him.
Yet I wonder if the 2 Old Gods could share control over the same indivual without fighting amongst themselves for control…

7 Luca August - 2009 at 12:07 pm

What if the possible Old God in Darkshore is the one responsable for the corruption of the esmerald dream? .I mean,i dont think he is dead,i think he is trapped by the massive sword in his back.Maybe he entered a comatose state,and his “spectral form”found its way to the esmerald dream?That would be cool

8 Claudio November - 2009 at 5:21 am

first of all i just want to point out that the books are not canon what blizzard decide to put into there game thats canon so in reality i dont think ner zhul is dead the proof for this

a certain alliance quest were you have to help a shaman the lich king appears and says i can smell the taint of shamanism i know because i was once a shaman myself

arthas was a paladin not a shaman this is nerzhul saying this

proof no 2

throughout the game arthas voice gets deeper and deeper becoming more orcish and less human, also pay attention to his laugh its an orc laugh

final bit of evidence arthas was just a dk nothing more are you seriously saying he can contend with the will of the lich king thats like saying frodo could resist sauron its impossible

on a side not were nearing the end not long to go before old saregeras comes back

9 Illidan January - 2010 at 9:23 am

Nah blizz won’t make the lich kings end.. It just cannot be because the scourge is still alive and the Lich King control them all so we still need a Lich King and as Ner’Zhul corrupted Arthas, Arthas will corrupt someone with only his spirit but Frostmourne still live and the Lich Kings cant end it’s just impossible if you don’t destroy Frostmourne and I think that only the titans can destroy it.. So yeah.. Cataclysm may break Frostmourne and destroy Lich King but if not NEVER forget that frostmourne still live.. And Arthas spirit too..

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