View Poll Results: To which degree can Arthas be held accountable for his Crime as a Death Knight/Lich K

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  • He can be held fully Accountable

    63 42.00%
  • He can be held partially accountable/Frostmournes influence is a mitigating factor for his guilt

    69 46.00%
  • He can't be held accountable/He could be considered legally insane

    18 12.00%
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  1. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Kyphael View Post
    He kept Jaina's locket and Tirion said he was the only one keeping The Scourge from wiping out all life on Azeroth. If his ultimate plan was to always turn all of Azeroth into Undead to fend off exterior threats, then not letting The Scourge do as intended would be counter intuitive to that plot.

    Now I guess the argument could be made why he didn't let The Scourge loose on Azeroth was the constant chess game singled out the ten perfect heroes he wanted to comprise his new higher lieutenants. The trials in the Argent Tournament made the heroes into his perfect future Death Knights, and if his victory in ICC was complete (IE: Uther didn't defeat him), then the next step would have been unleashing The Scourge as intended, but we can't be too sure, can we? And even so, that doesn't explain his attachment to Jaina's keepsake all this time if by this point he was an irredeemable monster.
    well, i think keeping the locket proved he did still care about some things. it would then make sense that he would want to fight off the legion and void, if he still cares about, instead of just his own power.

    idk. i think it looks like chronicle's depiction is at least closer to the truth, if not the full truth.

  2. #22
    Moderator Aucald's Avatar
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    Personally speaking, I think you could hold him accountable, yes. I think there are certainly mitigating circumstances, and much of his case could be said to be tragic - but he still succumbed to the process until the point where choice wasn't his anymore. I'm not sure you could easily apply sane/insane as an attribute to him so easily, he was certainly no longer himself on merging with the Helm of Domination and transfigured, but he was quite rational and aware of his own actions. But the person he was complicit in that, as well; tragically so.
    "Here lies a toppled god.
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  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Kyphael View Post
    The main difference is, Blizzard's inconsistent writing with what constitutes as a no-win scenario. That bad writing continues today. Did Varian really have to die on Broken Shore when the Lightforged Draenei could have exploded Gul'dan from out of orbit with the Vindicaar?

    That day, there was no immediate help, there was no knowledge to reverse the plague of undeath, and no deus-ex machina was coming down to save the day. Even Uther had no idea what to do other than just likely quarantine the city and then have to kill the zombies anyway. "There must be some other way!" translates to "I don't know what to do, but I don't want to get my hands dirty." There was no humane solution to the Undead plague that immediate day, people would be turning within the hour. Nothing in all the books Jaina read in Dalaran gave her a spell to solve how to counter people turning into undead.

    Arthas did the best he could in a no-win scenario, and was the only one with the balls to do so, while everyone else walked away, judging, but offering little to no alternative solutions.
    I guess I agree to some extent, on the no-win scenarios, but even in WC3 we KNEW the Kirin Tor was able to magic up an anti-undead field, and we KNEW Jaina was able to teleport to a different place instantaneously with very little effort.

    It's unfair to apply current WoW standards to WC3 because so much has happened since then, sure, but the tools were there to quarantine Stratholme, and they could've been implemented if any character had stopped to think. I get that they didn't "that day" but I still hold Arthas accountable.

    I do not buy that Jaina, being appointed as Antonidas' eyes and ears wouldn't have been able to convince him pretty easily to bring every single Dalaran mage to Stratholme and summon, if not a forcefield because I do not remember that occuring in WC3, then an anti-undead field around the city like they did to Dalaran later.

    You could even make the argument that if they did quarantine the city like this, they'd have more time to find a cure, and if impossible(which it would be), or the Cult of the Damned started a plague elsewhere they might even be able to increase the size of the field to cover all of Lordaeron and just incinerate every undead in the kingdom.

    The end result would obviously be the same, lots of Arthas' subjects dead, but I do not think this would've made him as vengeful, the approach would've been more measured and people wouldn't have abandoned him.

    And that's just one alternative to slaughtering innocent people, and in a world of magic I'm sure there would've been other options even on 'that day'
    Last edited by LarryFromHumanResources; 2020-02-27 at 01:45 AM.
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  4. #24
    Yes he is, but he wasn't expecting what came after picking up Frostmourne, losing his humanity. Initially, driven by vengeance, ignorance and foolishness, he willingly wanted the power of the sword, despite Muradin's warning. So he caused his own demise. And even after been transformed as a death knight, even if he had no more "emotions/soul", he still accepted his fate and fully committed to his new purpose as an agent of the Scourge, a villain, basically. One could argue that the moment he touched the sword he lost his soul and was only an empty vessel, but it didn't happen overnight and he fully knew what he was doing. So yeah, he's guilty. Its a tragic story, but the young devoted human, prince and paladin becoming fully evil, "Lich King style", is pretty badass.

  5. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by thesmall001 View Post
    Arthas chose to purge Stratholme. He chose to pursue Mal'ganis to Northrend. He chose to burn the ships and frame the mercenaries. He chose to pick-up Frostmourne rather than use the Light to heal his friend and retreat. He chose not to heed the warnings that were given to him. Frostmourne consumed his soul once he touched it and everything beyond that was not under his agency, because agency requires will to be such, so nothing beyond that is "Arthas".

    But the fact things reached that point? That was all his choice and the whole point is that characters around him cared enough to warn him at every turn and he continued regardless. Arthas' greatest crime and weakness was Pride.
    Purging Stratholme WAS the correct choice, in the arthas novel its explained how virulent the scourge disease is, a whole city turned into undead was a terrible danger for the eastern kingdoms

  6. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by LarryFromHumanResources View Post
    I guess I agree to some extent, but even in WC3 we KNEW the Kirin Tor was able to magic up an anti-undead field, and we KNEW Jaina was able to teleport to a different place instantaneously with very little effort.

    It's unfair to apply current WoW standards to WC3 because so much has happened since then but the tools were there to quarantine Stratholme.

    I do not buy that Jaina, being appointed as Antonidas' eyes and ears wouldn't have been able to convince him pretty easily to bring every single Dalaran mage Stratholme and summon, if not a forcefield because I do not remember that occuring in WC3, then a similar anti-undead field around the city.
    True, but to this day, there is no cure to the plague of undeath. It would have washed Arthas' hands of having to kill his own people before they turned into mindless undead, but unless that shield could be kept up forever (and then what would be the point?), it wouldn't have offered a solution. Eventually the undead inside would have had to be put down.

  7. #27
    Arthas also fucking destroyed ner'zhul guy who was "using" and tried to save the world by killing all the living things.

    Same logic can sargeras be held accountable and answer is yes.

  8. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Leyre View Post
    Purging Stratholme WAS the correct choice, in the arthas novel its explained how virulent the scourge disease is, a whole city turned into undead was a terrible danger for the eastern kingdoms
    It also bears mentioning that the cure for the Plague was only discovered at the end of TBC by Putress. And then Putricide made an even worse strain that couldn't be cured again just shortly after.
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  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Kyphael View Post
    True, but to this day, there is no cure to the plague of undeath. It would have washed Arthas' hands of having to kill his own people before they turned into mindless undead, but unless that shield could be kept up forever (and then what would be the point?), it wouldn't have offered a solution. Eventually the undead inside would have had to be put down.
    I never said the people could be saved, in fact I added that the end result would be the same, lots of dead Stratholmians(?), but the approach would've been more measured, less rash and likely wouldn't have driven Arthas' mentor and lover away, this more measured approach and those he cared about staying, would've made it possible to reason with Arthas that going to Northrend was a trap.
    Last edited by LarryFromHumanResources; 2020-02-27 at 01:55 AM.
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  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyphael View Post
    A case can be made that he was as much the first victim of Frostmourne and The Lich King as his father was. He was in a no-win situation in Stratholme, and did what he thought was best. He ignored the mad-sounding ravings of an useless prophet (Medivh) and went after the perpetrator behind the crimes against his people. At this point yeah, he was a horrible Paladin, but not an evil person.

    Goes to Northrend seeking out Mal'ganis, hears of Frostmourne, which can help kill Mal'ganis, and ignores his best friend's pleas. At this point he's beyond counsel, but still not evil.

    Grabs Frostmourne and from this point forward, it could be argued Arthas' actions were no longer his own, as his soul was the first Frostmourne claimed, according to in-game lore. The biggest contradiction to this is Arthas; Rise of the Lich King where we learned Arthas was in fact in control after destroying Ner'zhul's very presence, but if logic was, Frostmourne took his soul, how could it be inside The Helm of Domination too? The lore isn't entirely clear, and every new tidbit of information contradicts some prior information.

    His most evil act prior to picking up Frostmourne was killing the mercenaries.
    My headcanon is that he liberated the Drakkari from the Scourge and then asked them for help in return only to betray them, causing them to lose their trust from anyone else including the Argent Dawn and Ebon Blade

  11. #31
    i say its a mitigating factor but he still committed atrocity's before frostmourn and the control frost mourn had over him is debatable with recent lore.

    people can argue he had good reasons for stratholme and the mercs and all the other things he did, but at the end of the day, good motivation isn't a legal defence for an evil act, its a mitigating factor in sentencing but not a defence.

  12. #32
    I am Murloc! Varodoc's Avatar
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    He can be held accountable only up to the point he took Frostmourne, since at that point the "Good" Arthas was replaced by a psycopath who had his soul stolen, and was bound to commit evil for the sake of sating his thirst for blood.

    The "Good" Arthas was ultimately driven by good intentions but misguided. He redeemed himself when he stopped the Lich King from annihilating all of Azeroth.

    By the way, something that interested me is that the love for his people remained even after he took up Frostmourne and became the Lich King. He came to see the Scourge as his people, his children, and took great pride in being able to stir their hearts. It's interesting to see how, even in the depths of such depravity, he still saw himself as a selfless hero of his people (The Evil Arthas/Lich King, that is).
    Last edited by Varodoc; 2020-02-27 at 09:25 AM.
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  13. #33
    Yes, frostmourne just amplified and helped him gain power he already sought.

  14. #34
    Arthas did nothing wrong.

  15. #35
    He started spiraling down before he picked up the blade. He was just tipping over when he picked it up. In the end its still the man carrying the decisions.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Varodoc View Post
    He can be held accountable only up to the point he took Frostmourne, since at that point the "Good" Arthas was replaced by a psycopath who had his soul stolen, and was bound to commit evil for the sake of sating his thirst for blood.

    The "Good" Arthas was ultimately driven by good intentions but misguided. He redeemed himself when he stopped the Lich King from annihilating all of Azeroth.

    By the way, something that interested me is that the love for his people remained even after he took up Frostmourne and became the Lich King. He came to see the Scourge as his people, his children, and took great pride in being able to stir their hearts. It's interesting to see how, even in the depths of such depravity, he still saw himself as a selfless hero of his people (The Evil Arthas/Lich King, that is).
    Ah here comes the Arthas apologism squad. Didn't take long.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Leyre View Post
    Purging Stratholme WAS the correct choice, in the arthas novel its explained how virulent the scourge disease is, a whole city turned into undead was a terrible danger for the eastern kingdoms
    Bullfrog. He just didn't even try thinking of any other option. He slaughtered an entire city just because he wanted to. Not because he knew there was no other choice. His reaction towards Uther and Jaina about it speaks volumes.

  16. #36
    I mean, he went to Hell (the Maw). He did the crime and he did the time.
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  17. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Terongor View Post
    Arthas also fucking destroyed ner'zhul guy who was "using" and tried to save the world by killing all the living things.

    Same logic can sargeras be held accountable and answer is yes.
    This. Pretty much.

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesmall001 View Post
    Arthas chose to purge Stratholme. He chose to pursue Mal'ganis to Northrend. He chose to burn the ships and frame the mercenaries. He chose to pick-up Frostmourne rather than use the Light to heal his friend and retreat. He chose not to heed the warnings that were given to him. Frostmourne consumed his soul once he touched it and everything beyond that was not under his agency, because agency requires will to be such, so nothing beyond that is "Arthas".

    But the fact things reached that point? That was all his choice and the whole point is that characters around him cared enough to warn him at every turn and he continued regardless. Arthas' greatest crime and weakness was Pride.
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  19. #39
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    Mortals can, but I feel a just judgment by the Arbiter would be forgiving, since yes, Arthas was heavily influenced by personality altering powers. I think it's the same with Sylvanas, she's being the version of herself where the empathy she used to feel was stripped away from her. Though if I open that can of worms then shouldn't those born as psychopaths/sociopaths be seen as sort of victims too? Not like they chose not to feel anything, they just don't. That's the problem I have with the concept of divine judgment, as not everyone are put through similar trials. Had Sylvanas's life ended without being raised as a banshee she'd be in a good place, as described in her short story. Same would be true for Arthas had he gotten an arrow in the face before grabbing Frostmourne. Or if the orcs had gone all Sparta on Gul'dan for his disability.

    Mortal judgment is simpler, since it's only about breaking laws, not measuring your character and how well you lived. Mortal races of Azeroth would hold Arthas accountable, but I would grant him a peaceful afterlife regardless.
    Now you see it. Now you don't.

  20. #40
    I’d say he can for what he did to his men in Northrend. The Culling of Stratholme had to be done and Uther was a dick for not helping him out, though it didn’t help how arrogant Arthas has gotten in his conversation. Arthas went in a broken state after the culling and only sought vengeance, which is exactly what shouldn’t be a part of a paladin which Uther said earlier, and its gotten so far that he lead his men to death just to see Mal’Ganis dead.

    Everything after he picked up Frostmourne though, it was clear that he was no longer really Arthas, but just an evil vessel of what was left of him. His ‘good’ soul was the first victim of Frostmourne, which we also see return to Arthas after his defeat in ICC. In a series of tragic events I would say that the good Arthas deserves some kind of redemption, and if he were alive to be given a second chance. As a DK it was mostly the Lich King who screwed him up and I would put him accountable instead. But both are dead now, but who knows its hard to really call a character truly dead in Blizzard games these days.

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