1. #1

    Garrosh Hellscream: Behind the Fiction (A Short Documentary)

    This is meant as an in-world conspiracy theory. However, if WoW can be imagined to have something like an unreliable narrator (what that means for a game that you *play* is interesting to speculate about), it could be considered as an out-of story theory (where I'm not saying it's a particularly good one).

    With unrest and even murmurs of rebellion floating around the streets of the Horde capitals, there has been a lot of talk about the Warchief of the Horde, Garrosh Hellscream.
    The incredibly rapid rise to power by this son of Grom ‘Drinker of the Blood of Mannoroth’ Hellscream has turned many heads.
    Many wonder: how did this Orc, who was only so recently rescued from Outland, become our Warchief? Why did Thrall put his trust in him, which is looking so increasingly misplaced? Why does his behaviour as gleaned from public records seem so erratic at times?

    Our investigation turned up more questions than answers, but one thing is certain: not all within the Horde believe the story of the brave conqueror of Northrend and some of those who have been closest to him* allege that something far more sinister is afoot.


    Is Garrosh Hellscream the legitimate Warchief of the Horde?


    Let's look at the official story of Garrosh Hellscream as it is told by the current regime in Orgrimmar:
    During the war of the Burning Crusade, Thrall finds Garrosh Hellscream in Nagrand.
    He's not really running things well there at all and is despondent over the downfall of the horde, in his eyes caused by his father.
    The next mention in the histories of this despondent lethargic Orc is right before the Horde's invasion of Northrend; here too, the story is all but positive: Garrosh challenges Warchief Thrall (after all he did for him!) to a duel for the mantle of Warchief.
    The duel is cut short, but Garrosh' intentions are clear: he aims to rule the Horde.
    The Northrend campaign goes well, though Garrosh is blamed for the large amount of Horde casualties and his unthinking savage tactics by other strategists, including the highly respected Overlord Saurfang.
    In the most damning record of this time, Overlord Saurfang even threatens to kill the younger Hellscream if he leads the Horde astray.

    Fast forward to the earliest beginnings of the Cataclysm. The Orcs and other members of the Horde awoke to the sudden revelation that Thrall had already left Orgrimmar and that there was a new Warchief. There is no verifiable record from this time where Garrosh was on the throne while Thrall was still present.
    It was only afterwards declared that Thrall had appointed Garrosh some time previously.

    According to the official story, as the elements awake, Thrall leaves for Nagrand and names Garrosh Warchief of the Horde. Remember, this was Garrosh' dream since he left Outland. At the same time Garrosh is suddenly almost solely credited with the victory in Northrend. Those generals who actually served with him are either still away in Northrend or remain silent.
    As Thrall appoints him, he tells Garrosh that he is the only one who can keep the Horde together. We now know the Horde is ripping itself apart at the seams so soon afterwards. Thrall is widely seen as the wisest of all Orcs. Nothing Garrosh has done warrants Thrall's trust in him. How could he be so mistaken?

    And what does Garrosh do, as his long-standing desire is about to be fulfilled?
    Surely it would only be consistent with his character as we know him from both before and after this event, to jump at Thrall's offer? But no: the official record of the conversation has Garrosh humble himself before Thrall and say that he is not ready. In the end Thrall convinces him by saying the other leaders of the Horde will support him.
    This is strange to say the least, as within days one of these leaders, Cairne Bloodhoof, is seen fighting the Warchief and ends up dead.

    The Tauren chieftain was as wise, reasoned and thoughtful leader as the Horde has seen. Yet according to the official story this gentle being rashly challenged Garrosh for the position of Warchief.
    What happens next is well-known: Cairne is poisoned by Garrosh' weapon. Garrosh claims innocence of the plot, which is apparently headed by Magatha Runetotem.
    After Cairne's death, Garrosh sends the Horde to fight the Alliance on all fronts, and finally to conquer the newly discovered Pandaria.

    Meanwhile, tensions only get bigger within the Horde itself. The murder of Vol'Jin and the Troll rebellion are only the first cracks in the government’s propaganda armour. Allegedly, Thrall has thrown his lot in with the rebels, against his former protegé.
    So how did Garrosh gain the mantle of Warchief? Was it as the official story says, which would make it the son of Durotan’s greatest lapse of wisdom?
    Or is something else going on?

    Consider that as Warchief, Garrosh' will IS the Will of the Horde, as he does not shy away from telling everyone at every opportunity.
    As Warchief, he has access to all the records of the Horde; if there was such a thing as independent media in Orgrimmar under Thrall, nothing of the sort exists now.
    So how can we be sure the official story is what really happened? The answer is simple: we can't.

    Let's consider the most puzzling aspect of the official story: Thrall's decision to make Garrosh the Warchief, rather than any of the many available and experienced leaders the Horde had at that point. Theories for Thrall’s reasoning behind this strange decision come up almost daily.
    But what if the simple answer is that he *didn't* choose Garrosh. What if Thrall selected someone who almost everyone in the horde respected. Someone who shared Thrall's hatred of fel magic and who would work with him to keep the Horde loyal to its shamanistic roots? And someone who would very soon turn up dead.
    What if Thrall choose his most trusted ally since the Horde arrived on Kalimdor: Cairne Bloodhoof?

    The rest of the story becomes immediately apparent:
    The duel between Garrosh and Cairne wasn't initiated by Cairne as is popularly supposed. That goes completely against what we know of the Bloodhoof leader.
    Rather, it was Garrosh who challenged Cairne for the mantle of Warchief, just as he had done to Thrall not many years before.
    As soon as Thrall left for Nagrand, Garrosh took his chance.
    Blaming Cairne for his unwillingness to fully engage the Alliance, he challenged the Tauren to a duel... and kills him.

    After having murdered the real Warchief who was chosen by Thrall, Garrosh claims the Horde and starts his reign of terror. Garrosh’s main problem now is that Thrall still commands enormous respect throughout the horde, with many worshipping him as nothing less than their Messiah. Publicly going against his choice of Warchief would undermine his position.

    Garrosh decides to change history.
    In the version of events told by the Hellscream regime, Garrosh would be the one chosen by Thrall, making him the only legitimate Warchief and the saviour of the Horde in its need.
    Garrosh or his advisors concoct the poisoning scenario that is described in the official narrative of Cairne’s death. Magatha Grimtotem is scapegoated for Cairne’s death. Alternatively, there is a real plot, but it is co-opted by Garrosh and his advisors.
    Instead of a failing commander who spent most of the Warsong Offensive hiding out in Borean Tundra, Garrosh is now declared the Hero of the Horde who took down the Lich King,
    He blames the war that he started on the Alliance, and his dictatorial decrees and his clampdown on the free speech are accepted because of it.
    This was all made possible because Thrall didn’t hold a public ceremony for the new Warchief. Those who knew the real story were silenced with threats, or with violence.

    Finally, the Hellscream regime then set to work to buff up his reputation as an honorable Warchief by forging or influencing events in the Horde’s entire sphere of influence, from Silverpine to Stonetalon. What is true or false in these histories becomes ever harder to ascertain.

    So the question remains: why didn’t Thrall speak out against Garrosh?
    While he was battling the elements he could not have the Horde torn asunder by civil war. Afterwards, Garrosh had consolidated his grip on power and openly confronting him would be terribly dangerous. Thrall would be better off to play the fool and bide his time.

    Only now, with the Trolls in full rebellion and the Forsaken about to break away, the full extent of ‘Warchief’ Garrosh Hellscream’s evil is starting to come to light.

    So, what really happened? Did an inexperienced, rash and savage Orc who is prone to mood swings get elevated to the highest position in the Horde by the wise shaman Thrall, in what can only be described as the greatest lapse in judgement in the history of Azeroth?
    Or did the scheming power-hungry son of Hellscream take the first chance he got as soon as Thrall was preoccupied by other matters and usurp and murder the rightful ruler of the Horde?

    We’ll let you decide.



    *We ask for your understanding that due to the precarious situation in Orgrimmar at this time, we cannot reveal the names of the people we spoke to as it would imperil their lives.
    Last edited by Dragon2K; 2013-04-04 at 07:18 PM.

  2. #2
    The Insane Trassk's Avatar
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    Thrall didn't know the level of depravity Garrosh had to him. I'm convinced now that Garrosh is very much so a bi-polar character, one with mental issues that didn't show on a grand scale to begin with, and only became worse and worse over time. Thrall obviously didn't know this, be only appointed him as the temp warchief, and thought he'd be returning.. until the cataclysm happened. You can't hold Thrall anymore accountable for how Garrosh turned out then you can Cairne or Vol'jin, all pretty much didn't realize they had a ticking time bomb with them.

  3. #3
    BTW: This is meant as an in-game fiction kind of thing to go along with the whole Horde Rebellion and Stuff.

  4. #4
    Scarab Lord Arrashi's Avatar
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    Not to sound like asshole but can we leave writing terrible fanfic to man who does it best - Chris Metzen ? Entire "garrosh arc" is already far-fatched and gonna leave way too many plot holes on its own. Lets just dont make it any worse.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Arrashi View Post
    Not to sound like asshole but can we leave writing terrible fanfic to man who does it best - Chris Metzen ? Entire "garrosh arc" is already far-fatched and gonna leave way too many plot holes on its own. Lets just dont make it any worse.
    That's funny; because the idea sprang from a discussion on how with a slightly different chain of events, Garrosh' story would have made so much more sense. With all the characters acting rather more consistently and bringing us to exactly the same point where we are now.

    Also, you're right. You do sound a bit like an asshole.
    Last edited by Dragon2K; 2013-04-04 at 09:01 PM.

  6. #6
    one a sidenote: when I read "garrosh hellscream" on the title, I knew trassk was either the OP or the first reply

    on-topic: this is all fine as a what if scenario, but it's not really correct in the actual game. this game doesn't have a narrator at all after the first minute that follows character creation, so it's not a case of an unreliable narrator. we SAW thrall choose garrosh as the warchief, no one told us that.
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  7. #7
    The Insane Trassk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by checking facts View Post
    one a sidenote: when I read "garrosh hellscream" on the title, I knew trassk was either the OP or the first reply

    on-topic: this is all fine as a what if scenario, but it's not really correct in the actual game. this game doesn't have a narrator at all after the first minute that follows character creation, so it's not a case of an unreliable narrator. we SAW thrall choose garrosh as the warchief, no one told us that.
    that suppose to be funny is it? I take the current lore and political upheaval in wow as the only thing left worth discussing, even with the faults in it. I could just as much say 'I knew XXX would be here because of XXX'.

    Also, we saw Thrall choose Garrosh as the temp warchief, but there was never anything to show him validating Garrosh as his full on replacement, unlike when Doomhammer passed the mantle to Thrall. Thrall simply had to focus on his goal. Yeah, its one of the stages in warcrafts lore I wish never happened, and its just gone downhill since then.

  8. #8
    I like this little theory, well done.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Trassk View Post
    that suppose to be funny is it? I take the current lore and political upheaval in wow as the only thing left worth discussing, even with the faults in it. I could just as much say 'I knew XXX would be here because of XXX'.
    you need to chill. I was just stating that you are usually the first to arrive in a garrosh discussion. no need to get angry lol
    Warlorcs of Draenorc made me quit. You can't have my stuff.

  10. #10
    There are a few events missing on the OP, that are what really made Garrosh what is today. The Theramore Summit, the Wolfheart and Tides of War.

    Christie Golden pretty much nailed his character, Garrosh has daddy issues, he is always looking for validation. That's why he looks so inconsistent without really being it.

  11. #11
    The Insane Trassk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tauror View Post
    There are a few events missing on the OP, that are what really made Garrosh what is today. The Theramore Summit, the Wolfheart and Tides of War.

    Christie Golden pretty much nailed his character, Garrosh has daddy issues, he is always looking for validation. That's why he looks so inconsistent without really being it.
    Golden also said Garrosh is a character who despite his outward bravado, he is a very weak character at his core, he's malleable, meaning he is easily warped by events and situations and has no solid structure, where as Jaina, despite having endured one of the worst events in recent wow history, and being broken by it, apparently her core still allow her to carry on. You can honestly believe if Garrosh was in the position Jaina was in, he would have broken by it. He's just such a weak character, and its only people who can only see his outer bravado that can't understand the characters core.

    Got to hand it to Golden, she understands the characters in warcraft better then anyone.

  12. #12
    Stood in the Fire Mr Meeseeks's Avatar
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    I have no clue why, but I instantly read this as Kent brockman. But Garrosh is a fool. A blind, fool. I don't believe there is a single bone of common sense in his body.
    Last edited by Mr Meeseeks; 2013-04-04 at 10:52 PM.
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  13. #13
    The Insane Trassk's Avatar
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    Garrosh is a character who simply fits into the same school as Arthas, another character who was malleable and easily gave into corruption. Garrosh is doing the same just in a different manner, as he forsakes any sense of reasoning.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by checking facts View Post
    on-topic: this is all fine as a what if scenario, but it's not really correct in the actual game. this game doesn't have a narrator at all after the first minute that follows character creation, so it's not a case of an unreliable narrator. we SAW thrall choose garrosh as the warchief, no one told us that.
    Well, only if you think of a narrator as a voice telling you what's going on. If you regard the 'narrator' as the vehicle through which the story is told (such as the main character of a book or movie), then I suppose in Warcraft your own character is the narrator.
    There are actually some instances in WoW where there is an unreliable narrator; for instance the 'The Day That Deathwing Came' quests in Badlands, though there a different narrator from your own character is used (but you do PLAY as them).
    The question is then whether our own characters can be trusted :P Does your character do stuff that you don't get to see (like, go to the bathroom for instance)? Are there hints that things you experienced with your character didn't happen the way you saw them? The Purge of Dalaran for instance, is quite different when experienced from the Horde side than it is from the Alliance; and for the taking down of raid bosses it's often not clear in the lore whether Horde or Alliance heroes participated.
    Now I know that this is mostly for gameplay reasons, but it does go to show that we're not experiencing the *exact truth* of the Warcraft universe, and therefore are *technically* dealing with an unreliable narrator, i.e. our characters

    ---------- Post added 2013-04-05 at 01:51 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Rioichi View Post
    I have no clue why, but I instantly read this as Kent brockman. But Garrosh is a fool. A blind, fool. I don't believe there is a single bone of common sense in his body.
    Haha, that's definitely the kind of voice I was trying to channel while writing Glad it got through somewhat

    ---------- Post added 2013-04-05 at 01:56 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Tauror View Post
    There are a few events missing on the OP, that are what really made Garrosh what is today. The Theramore Summit, the Wolfheart and Tides of War.

    Christie Golden pretty much nailed his character, Garrosh has daddy issues, he is always looking for validation. That's why he looks so inconsistent without really being it.
    Yeah sorry, didn't read the books :P I read 'Tides of Darkness' once and it was absolutely awful. Then I read 'The Last Guardian' and it was only marginally better, but still pretty awful. I leafed through one the War of the Ancients books once.. and then I figured game tie-in books just weren't for me :P

  15. #15
    Epic! icausewipes's Avatar
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    Did thrall choose him or did Garrosh put his foot in thrall's backside and take it?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5afNCOUgEZU

    looks like he took it by force and has been kicking butt ever since. this is a warchief the horde need and blizz killing him off is not cool.
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  16. #16
    The Insane Trassk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icausewipes View Post
    Did thrall choose him or did Garrosh put his foot in thrall's backside and take it?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5afNCOUgEZU

    looks like he took it by force and has been kicking butt ever since. this is a warchief the horde need and blizz killing him off is not cool.
    Ok, you seem to keep doing this so I'll bite. Are you serious, or just doing this on purpose?

  17. #17
    Pandaren Monk Ronnosh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trassk View Post
    Garrosh is a character who simply fits into the same school as Arthas, another character who was malleable and easily gave into corruption. Garrosh is doing the same just in a different manner, as he forsakes any sense of reasoning.
    This pretty much nails it. Both are victims of their own arrogance and endless desire for validation from their peers. Once you look at everything that's happened from WotLK to the present, you'll see that Garrosh is and has been walking a dangerously similar path to Arthas. To be honest it wouldn't surprise me if Garrosh survives his ouster and, consumed by his pride and unquenchable thirst for power, attempts to make a trek to Northrend to wrest the Helm of Domination from Bolvar. This direction, as silly as it may sound, makes sense as to why Blizzard went the "there must always be a Lich King" route and sacrificed Bolvar to be a placeholder Lich King that is keeping the Scourge in check until Blizzard is ready to flesh out whatever's left to tell of that story.

    ---------- Post added 2013-04-05 at 12:39 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Trassk View Post
    Ok, you seem to keep doing this so I'll bite. Are you serious, or just doing this on purpose?
    I see way too often that the "pro-Garrosh" folks voicing their opinion tend to frame their support within the short-term context that "Garrosh has brought back a much-needed sense of martial pride and aura of fear back to the Horde" while completely ignoring the long-term implications that, by exceeding Orgrim Doomhammer's savagery, Gul'dan's duplicitousness, and Blackhand's sheer incompetence by miles, Garrosh Hellscream has cemented himself as the most terrible warchief the Horde has ever known. I've found this observation quite interesting since it outlines exactly what the next two patches will be exploring with the story: the danger of pride. This couldn't more perfectly outline the dangers that come when "Horde Pride" crosses the line and becomes a sense of racial supremacy fueled by arrogance, contempt, and jingoism. It's no secret that Garrosh despises the other races of the Horde as weak and only holds a modicum of respect for the Tauren because their strength and martial prowess rivals that of the orcs.
    Last edited by Ronnosh; 2013-04-05 at 12:42 AM.
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