View Poll Results: Do you like the First Ones' lore?

Voters
91. This poll is closed
  • Yes i do

    9 9.89%
  • No i don't

    68 74.73%
  • Don't know

    14 15.38%
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  1. #61
    Quote Originally Posted by Varodoc View Post
    Literally everything the First Ones did could have been done by the Titans. They already created the Emerald Dream, a realm of Life that shows a version of Azeroth where life is pristine and untouched by mortals, why couldn't they have created the realm of Death too?
    ah, but you see Danuser needs every big bad/character/race to have a secret bigger baddie/race/character behind the scenes all this time! since retconning is his bead and butter.
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    as for OP, the first ones are meh but they are w.e now since we know next to nothing about them. And that is how they should remain, but we all know Danuser and his writing team think they are better writers than they are, so we're 100% going to end up with a full tinder profile of each First One that existed, probably will meet some of them and there will be the secret one who turned evil and is the big baddie we'll beat in a raid in some future expansion.

    personally, I don't really like the the First Ones (their awful SL introduction didn't help either) as the issue with them being retconned into the lore is how the Titans already existed and fit their role already. Not everything needs a secret creator behind the scenes, things can come into order naturally and work out like that. There was nothing wrong with the original lore of light/void clashing = big bang and then things came into being as time passed.
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    now in a more general perspective, when you have good writers the concept of progenitor races/beings can work, and it's an idea that is common in many great sci-fi and fantasy stories. The issue is when bad writers get their hands on that concept, such as 343 and how horribly they ruined the forerunners from Halo, especially with revealing way too much about them.
    Last edited by voidox; 2022-04-29 at 03:20 PM.

  2. #62
    Warchief Lupinemancer's Avatar
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    I'm not fond of how they basically made it so the Cosmic Forces didn't emerge on their own, but were created by the First Ones.

  3. #63
    Quote Originally Posted by Varodoc View Post
    "Really special" is the exact expression I would use, it's like you read my mind! Is this the power of the First Ones?
    I disagree, nothing about the titans exemplifies anything other than order. This is even before Chronicles, they were shown to put things in order in the physical world, the great dark beyond etc.. Sure they could have changed the lore to make them more than just beings of order but for what purpose? other than keeping the cosmic character count low? Marvel has a ton and no one loses their minds over it. For some reason it's taboo in the world of warcraft universe. As for the emerald dream, for our understanding it only exists specifically in Azeroth. So that alone isn't enough to show that they cover other parts of the cosmology. Azeroth is very unique which was show to be so since the beginning. So the emerald dream is more a testament to Azeroth's uniqueness not that they can use the Titans for everything.

  4. #64
    Pit Lord Magical Mudcrab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Super Dickmann View Post
    They're fine for what they are, which are Ersatz pre-Chronicle Titans. They have no personalities and names and that's exactly how it should stay. The worst thing that happened to the Titans was clarification and characterization, Sargeras exempted.
    I think the fact that they are effectively pre-Chronicle Titans is kinda the problem, though. This turtles all the way down shit where we have the Titans being preceded by the First Ones, who were (if leaks are to be believed) preceded by a being known internally as the "Clockmaker", is just so contrived.

    It's fine to have a structured cosmos, but there doesn't need to be this stupid level of hierarchy within it, as most fantasy universes even understand that Ordering a universe has hard limits (i.e.: you can create the initial set of conditions, but then the Universe needs to be left to grow naturally). By contrast, we appear to have a ladder of creator deities, with the First Ones having been tasked with Ordering the cosmic realms, and they for whatever reason intentionally created flawed designs for at least one of their realms and left Oracles with complete knowledge of this in Zerith Mortis with the sole purpose of waiting for mortals to come to Zerith Mortis and rectify the flawed creation. It's just staggering levels of dumb.
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  5. #65
    Quote Originally Posted by Magical Mudcrab View Post
    I think the fact that they are effectively pre-Chronicle Titans is kinda the problem, though. This turtles all the way down shit where we have the Titans being preceded by the First Ones, who were (if leaks are to be believed) preceded by a being known internally as the "Clockmaker", is just so contrived.

    It's fine to have a structured cosmos, but there doesn't need to be this stupid level of hierarchy within it, as most fantasy universes even understand that Ordering a universe has hard limits (i.e.: you can create the initial set of conditions, but then the Universe needs to be left to grow naturally). By contrast, we appear to have a ladder of creator deities, with the First Ones having been tasked with Ordering the cosmic realms, and they for whatever reason intentionally created flawed designs for at least one of their realms and left Oracles with complete knowledge of this in Zerith Mortis with the sole purpose of waiting for mortals to come to Zerith Mortis and rectify the flawed creation. It's just staggering levels of dumb.
    The problem is that once the Titans got turned into big granddad figures instead of ineffable, hard to define progenitors who built most of what we see on Azeroth in factories and were perfectly okay with casually glassing a world and starting over on the say-so of Algalon we lost their main purpose in the story. Having a higher instance allows mystery in the setting, it sets up something that's above the player and unattainable. When you set up in the side books that all these guys have names and personalities and beyond that they're also dead, except not really since Legion backtracked on that immediately, their portrayal becomes incongruous. Algalon is surprised we've got a spirit and a heart and worries about how many worlds he's glassed. But the post-Chronicles are incredibly invested in all their creations and have zero issues chatting away with us while we fight them. By the end of Legion not only have they completely departed from the concept they were supposed to fill, nothing was left to fill their spot.

    The First Ones on the other hand are basically pre-Chronicle Titans and work in the exact same way, except without the things that eventually dragged those down - they don't have names, personalities or faces. They've no fallen titan to lend them a familial dynamic. The criticism you have regarding how you can't form everything perfectly from the word go is exactly the plot the story sets up. They don't create perfect conditions, but iterations. This is heavily implied even before 9.2 with how there's positions in Maldraxxus that predate the Primus, much like how before the Winter Queen Marasmus was the head honcho, but is the entire plot in 9.2, with the prophecy hinging on mortals not rectifying their flawed creation to some perfect form but iterating upon it. This isn't very subtle either, in ZM we see the prototypes and Firim's journal stays outright that the First Ones knew that their design wouldn't work forever and would be iterated as conditions change and things evolve. This, plus the prototypes themselves, are also entirely in keeping with the pre-Chronicle Titan MMO that they're a transparent riff of.
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  6. #66
    Pit Lord Magical Mudcrab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Super Dickmann View Post
    The problem is that once the Titans got turned into big granddad figures instead of ineffable, hard to define progenitors who built most of what we see on Azeroth in factories and were perfectly okay with casually glassing a world and starting over on the say-so of Algalon we lost their main purpose in the story. Having a higher instance allows mystery in the setting, it sets up something that's above the player and unattainable. When you set up in the side books that all these guys have names and personalities and beyond that they're also dead, except not really since Legion backtracked on that immediately, their portrayal becomes incongruous. Algalon is surprised we've got a spirit and a heart and worries about how many worlds he's glassed. But the post-Chronicles are incredibly invested in all their creations and have zero issues chatting away with us while we fight them. By the end of Legion not only have they completely departed from the concept they were supposed to fill, nothing was left to fill their spot.
    I don't want to get into them being incongruous because of retcons - the entirety of Shadowlands is predicated on a deluge of massive retcons - but what do you mean they are now invested in their creations? I don't recall any instance in which the Titans have opted to not completely glass a world (or commit another atrocity) when they believe it was a lost cause. I don't think we've ever seen the Titans even take a wholly selfless action without there being some overarching logic. Additionally, the only Titans we've "talked to" have been:
    1) Eonar, briefly after we saved her from the Legion.
    2) Aggramar, briefly after we freed him from the avatar that contained him.

    All they really did was thank us, inform us of what they were going to do, or give us direction. We weren't treated with respect because they care about us, but because they needed us to deal with Argus so they could focus on gathering power to imprison Sargeras. Other than Azeroth, who seems to more rely on us for her own security, we don't really have any Titans who have formed any kind of relationship outside of their own kind (and even Azeroth might not be "aware" of us in any sense we understand).

    The First Ones on the other hand are basically pre-Chronicle Titans and work in the exact same way, except without the things that eventually dragged those down - they don't have names, personalities or faces. They've no fallen titan to lend them a familial dynamic.
    Chronicle really didn't change our understanding of the Titans though as they've always had names and some basic relationships (at least, in non-canon sources), and these have been known since Classic WoW. Regarding any familial dynamic, I disagree that Sargeras did that in any sense, or even Chronicle for that matter. Sargeras' betrayal of the Pantheon's cause is not given some deep meaning or lingers on the relationship between the Titans too heavily, and is very brief in explaining Sargeras' actions and the outcomes of them. The only time these bonds are really manifested are:
    1) The Warcraft RPG, which introduced connections between many of the Titans, such as making Aman'thul and Eonar consorts; however, this has existed since Classic WoW and is considered non-canon.
    2) When Aman'thul calls Sargeras "brother" when containing him at the Seat of the Pantheon, but this was in Legion and "brother" may not imply familial connection but rather their racial kinship.

    The criticism you have regarding how you can't form everything perfectly from the word go is exactly the plot the story sets up. They don't create perfect conditions, but iterations. This is heavily implied even before 9.2 with how there's positions in Maldraxxus that predate the Primus, much like how before the Winter Queen Marasmus was the head honcho, but is the entire plot in 9.2, with the prophecy hinging on mortals not rectifying their flawed creation to some perfect form but iterating upon it. This isn't very subtle either, in ZM we see the prototypes and Firim's journal stays outright that the First Ones knew that their design wouldn't work forever and would be iterated as conditions change and things evolve. This, plus the prototypes themselves, are also entirely in keeping with the pre-Chronicle Titan MMO that they're a transparent riff of.
    This is a big problem though, and is part of the reason why the story of Shadowlands portrays the First Ones as stupid: they created a flawed design, knew how to rectify the design, decided not to do so, and instead left the components behind for someone else to update the design which they already knew how to do. It's not an instance of "the design was flawed and would eventually need to be improved," but "they intentionally introduced flaws into the design they knew would precipitate change, knew what the change would be, but opted not to implement it themselves." It would be reasonable if this came off as the Shadowlands evolving in design, but we have indications of this all being preplanned by the First Ones, which means it's not iteration. If this were simply iteration, then the results of the system would have been used to influence the new system, and while it is this case so far as the mortals are concerned, but we know in the meta that the First Ones already knew the outcome of the system. All the First Ones have done is add in unnecessary layers of contrivance to the universe when we start to drill down into their actions, whereas the Titans typically had some goal they are working to attain (which may have flawed implementations).

    If the First Ones were like the Titans and made creations that were to develop by themselves, just with failsafe mechanisms, that would be fine. What we have are omniscient beings who intentionally induce flaws into systems, know the outcome of these flaws, and know how these flaws will be rectified in the future, but do nothing. Blizzard's decision to have the Oracles in Zereth Mortis, and to have all the events of Shadowlands being a huge prophecy, has basically buggered the chances of the First Ones being as accepted as the Titans were.
    Last edited by Magical Mudcrab; 2022-05-01 at 09:34 AM.
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  7. #67
    Quote Originally Posted by Magical Mudcrab View Post
    I don't want to get into them being incongruous because of retcons - the entirety of Shadowlands is predicated on a deluge of massive retcons - but what do you mean they are now invested in their creations? I don't recall any instance in which the Titans have opted to not completely glass a world (or commit another atrocity) when they believe it was a lost cause. I don't think we've ever seen the Titans even take a wholly selfless action without there being some overarching logic. Additionally, the only Titans we've "talked to" have been:
    1) Eonar, briefly after we saved her from the Legion.
    2) Aggramar, briefly after we freed him from the avatar that contained him.

    All they really did was thank us, inform us of what they were going to do, or give us direction. We weren't treated with respect because they care about us, but because they needed us to deal with Argus so they could focus on gathering power to imprison Sargeras. Other than Azeroth, who seems to more rely on us for her own security, we don't really have any Titans who have formed any kind of relationship outside of their own kind (and even Azeroth might not be "aware" of us in any sense we understand).
    They are incongruous because of retcons. That's not some kind of value judgment on retcons in general, the Titan retcons aren't bad because they're retcons but because they damage the purpose of these characters. The inhumanity of the Titans, which was a massive focus in how they were portrayed by proxy through Wrath, when they were at their best, is entirely absent from the Chronicle version which also totally deemphasizes their glassing of worlds. The Titans micromanage the establishment of their facilities on Azeroth, they create and ensoul constructs. They personally get involved in blessing the dragons out of solidarity. Their creations, the keepers are blessed mini-mes and people. The Pantheon and Sargeras's split is also one of their virtue vs. his going off the rails. You can project some kind of superiority or efficiency onto them if you really want to, but that's plainly not the authorial intent. We're not distant from the Titans at the end of Legion. We save their asses, they tell us we're very cool dudes and we beat their avatars in fights. Reconciling the titans who casually glassed worlds of Algalon with those in Legion gels poorly.

    Chronicle really didn't change our understanding of the Titans though as they've always had names and some basic relationships (at least, in non-canon sources), and these have been known since Classic WoW. Regarding any familial dynamic, I disagree that Sargeras did that in any sense, or even Chronicle for that matter. Sargeras' betrayal of the Pantheon's cause is not given some deep meaning or lingers on the relationship between the Titans too heavily, and is very brief in explaining Sargeras' actions and the outcomes of them. The only time these bonds are really manifested are:
    1) The Warcraft RPG, which introduced connections between many of the Titans, such as making Aman'thul and Eonar consorts; however, this has existed since Classic WoW and is considered non-canon.
    2) When Aman'thul calls Sargeras "brother" when containing him at the Seat of the Pantheon, but this was in Legion and "brother" may not imply familial connection but rather their racial kinship.
    Yes, that's why I distinguished between my criticism of Chronicle's take on the Titans and how it made them unfit for purpose and the things that already dragged them down as absentee progenitor gods: without the things that eventually dragged those down - they don't have names, personalities or faces. They've no fallen titan to lend them a familial dynamic. The familial dynamics were already in at the start and the RPG is functionally canon in terms of designs and has been recanonized in large part by how they pop up in Legion. All of these things took away from the main benefit of the titans which were they as sufficiently advanced aliens introducing order but uninvested in mortal life beyond its base biological viability and them not being contamined by foreign forces. The humanization of the Titans has always been their weakest part and the most successful iterations are those who've deemphasized it as much as possible. Ulduar and Uldir chief of all.

    This is a big problem though, and is part of the reason why the story of Shadowlands portrays the First Ones as stupid: they created a flawed design, knew how to rectify the design, decided not to do so, and instead left the components behind for someone else to update the design which they already knew how to do. It's not an instance of "the design was flawed and would eventually need to be improved," but "they intentionally introduced flaws into the design they knew would precipitate change, knew what the change would be, but opted not to implement it themselves." It would be reasonable if this came off as the Shadowlands evolving in design, but we have indications of this all being preplanned by the First Ones, which means it's not iteration. If this were simply iteration, then the results of the system would have been used to influence the new system, and while it is this case so far as the mortals are concerned, but we know in the meta that the First Ones already knew the outcome of the system. All the First Ones have done is add in unnecessary layers of contrivance to the universe when we start to drill down into their actions, whereas the Titans typically had some goal they are working to attain (which may have flawed implementations).

    If the First Ones were like the Titans and made creations that were to develop by themselves, just with failsafe mechanisms, that would be fine. What we have are omniscient beings who intentionally induce flaws into systems, know the outcome of these flaws, and know how these flaws will be rectified in the future, but do nothing. Blizzard's decision to have the Oracles in Zereth Mortis, and to have all the events of Shadowlands being a huge prophecy, has basically buggered the chances of the First Ones being as accepted as the Titans were.
    There is zero chance of the First Ones ever being accepted like the Titans were because their whole existence is to patch over the hole that axing the original progenitors made and to fill in a gap that Blizzard themselves created by rendering the Titans wholly unfit for purpose in the same compendium and pair of expansions that wasted virtually all higher lore up to this point and left the game without any higher instance to lend mystery and gravitas. While their portrayal is basically fine, they don't have eighteen years of buy-in the way the Titans do, they come from a crap expansion and most of their lore is deliberately obtuse, which while appropriate doesn't lend itself to much clear discussion. The incoherence of prophecy will take no part in it. The SL prophecy bit is essentially a substantially less stupid version of the "Aspects need to be empowered to defeat Deathwing, whihc was a problem caused by empowering the Aspects" story in Cataclysm, because there's no conceit that the people who set it up are benevolent or human in any way and aren't just sitting around looking at how their plants are coming along this go around.

    Case in point, fate. The First Ones didn't necessarily know how to rectify the design, what they did was implement a failsafe in case things went tits up and to allow iteration from there. One of the many concepts that SL plays with and largely fucks up is the malleability of fate. See the Bald Man having his loom to tell and reconfigure fate, the Treads of Fate arguably actually being a canon element discussed by those present and so forth. More than that, the fact that the First Ones create things, let them run their course and then ditch them and are in that case to some extent fallible is what the prototypes were about. The Winter Queen is the newest version of the 'nature afterlife rebirth mechanism' leader, preceded by the Prototype of herself in Zereth Mortis who was unfit for purpose and never got off the assembly line and preceded by Marasmus and presumably others before them.
    Last edited by Super Dickmann; 2022-05-01 at 10:05 AM.
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