God Blizzard is good when it comes to World of Warcraft promotional material. The trailer for Battle for Azeroth was breathtaking. And here’s a new goody from them.
The Warbringers, the 3-part short series explores the stories behind 3 powerful women who shaped Azeroth to be what it is today: Jaina Proudmore, Sylvanas Windrunner (now known as the Banshee Queen) and Queen Azhara. The first animated short centers around Jaina and her difficult journey of losing faith in lasting peace between the Horde and Alliance.
It’s not easy to follow the story that has been evolving for over a decade, but in short: Jaina has always been the most stalwart and staunch defender of peace between the factions, even going so for as to betray her own father, the admiral of Alliance fleet and leave him to die to Orcs. When the Orcs later destroy Theramore, her peaceful city-state, she begins to see the old man’s point of view a little bit. The short explores exactly that facet of her character.
These shorts are important as a bridging piece of content that will inform the players about the motivations of characters crucial to the expansion, which is welcome, because again, with over a decade of storytelling, there’s a lot of nuance to the story, but the first short does an amazing job at conveying all of it.
Which doesn’t even touch on the amazing quality of the animation, it’s staggeringly beautiful. And something of note also has to be said about representation with Blizzard acknowledging the involvement these women have, even if it’s a fictional, fantasy world. What was that adage? We tell stories, to better understand the real world.
It has to be said, Blizzard never once misses a beat when it comes to animation. I’m eagerly awaiting the Sylvanas short because her story is truly fascinating and she’s legitimately one of the more nuanced antihero characters I’ve had the pleasure to read about.