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Cheat Sheet

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 18, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

quillandpaper

As promised in my last post, here’s an overview of the state of the blog.  I realize that after two years of accumulated in-jokes and storylines, the Command Board may be a bit disorienting to a newcomer (or, for that matter, to a long-time reader who blinked at the wrong time), so I’ve tried to break this down into a semi-sorta-kinda FAQ.  Most of this will be familiar to long-time readers (though I’ve also included a few behind-the-scenes notes that some of you might find interesting), but I hope it’ll explain a few things for new arrivals.

 

I hate Garrosh!  Why does Garrosh seem so sympathetic in this blog?  Are you one of those Garrosh apologists/fanboys?

Comically enough, I originally started the blog because I really didn’t like Garrosh either, and saw the blog as a way to have a few chuckles mocking him.  It wasn’t long, though, before I decided that I would get sick of the outright-mockery approach pretty quickly, so I started branching out.  Part of the result was letting blog-Garrosh become (I hope) a bit more multifaceted, while still remaining true to his temperamental self.  Including the LOLs.

Ultimately, I don’t set out to justify anything Garrosh does, just to present it in a way that makes sense in light of the character, and if that pushes a black-and-white scenario into some shade of gray, well, that makes for a more interesting story anyway.  And, keep in mind, the story here is being told, generally, from Garrosh’s point of view, so I don’t know how that perspective wouldn’t be sympathetic.  Everyone is the hero of their own story, after all, and nobody thinks they’re a bad person.

 

Why isn’t there anything here about the siege of Orgrimmar?

What are you talking about?  There was a post titled “The siege of Orgrimmar” a good solid year ago – if anything, shouldn’t you be asking why Blizzard is coming so late to the party?  (By the way, I didn’t realize until just now that patch 5.4 was released almost exactly on the one-year anniversary of the “Siege or Orgrimmar” post.  How awesomely freaky is that?)

Anyway, to give a real answer: Time-wise, the blog has not yet reached the events of patch 5.4.  The storyline is currently playing out the midst of 5.2; Lor’themar Theron and Jaina Proudmoore have recently set up shop on the Isle of Thunder, while Vol’jin is still recovering from his injuries at Shado-Pan Monastery.

This time lag between the game and the blog, by the way, is partly by design.  I’d always intended the blog to run a bit behind the game; coming into MoP, I realized that if I tried to follow in-game events too closely, I wouldn’t have time to adapt my own ideas to fit Blizzard’s story.  There have already been a few instances in which Blizzard’s story has taken a turn that’s forced me to change gears in a way that would have been disastrous if I didn’t have a month or two of lead time.  Of course, I’m clearly more than a month or two behind – that’s been a result of various real-life circumstances slowing down my output over the last few months.  I’m working on it!

 

So the blog basically retells in-game events, from Garrosh’s point of view?

Yes and no.  The blog operates within Blizzard’s continuity (with the aforementioned time delay), but also weaves additional storylines in and around the canonical Blizzard plots.  Anything that happens or is stated explicitly in-game is canon, obviously, and the blog is bound by it.*  That said, I sometimes like to put other stories around Blizzard’s, to give them context that might change the way those events are perceived.  (This was a large part of my motivation for the Timequake story leading into Theramore, or, more recently, the blog events surrounding the Divine Bell / Domination Offensive storyline.)

Also, while the point of view is mostly Garrosh’s, there are some posts that present events from other perspectives.  Most notable are the “guest” posts by Spazzle (Garrosh’s tech goblin), which help fill in story details that Garrosh wouldn’t necessarily be privy to.  You can always identify a post written by someone other than Garrosh by the color of the text – Spazzle’s posts, for instance, are always written in green text, and almost always include the phrase “Spazzle Speaks” in the title.  Also, as a rule of thumb, when Spazzle et al post, Garrosh remains oblivious to anything that might be revealed; the conceit at work here is that Garrosh doesn’t really care what anyone else is writing, so he doesn’t bother reading it.

* The one instance that I’ve flat-out fudged in-game details is the way I’ve chosen to incorporate the events of “A Little Patience.”  From the Alliance point of view, that scenario takes place almost immediately after Varian arrives in Pandaria; in the blog, I’ve pushed those events a bit later in the story.  This was largely a matter of convenience: I knew that I wanted there to be a military operation in Krasarang in which Garrosh’s trainees went missing, and I realized fairly late in the going that “A Little Patience” lent itself to that story pretty readily.  Hopefully those Alliance-side readers out there will be willing to turn a blind eye to my blatant and shameless revision.  (Horde bias rears its ugly head again!  GRR!)

 

Garrosh has trainees?  When did that happen?

Right here!  As part of the escalation of the war effort, the Kor’kron started a training program to prepare orc teenagers for eventual military service.  When Garrosh learned that Gurtash – an orc boy from the Orgrimmar orphanage whom Garrosh had taken under his wing – had been conscripted, Garrosh volunteered to take Gurtash’s trainee group under his own supervision.  (Side note: In my head-canon, Garrosh has a bit of a soft spot for the orphans, being as he is one himself.)  The trainees, who have nicknamed themselves the Dead Peons Society (DPS for short) have accompanied Garrosh to Pandaria and joined him on a few adventures.  Fairly recently, they went missing after the Horde loss in the “A Little Patience” scenario, and were eventually found by Garrosh, hiding away in an underground system of caves.  That’s brought us up to the point where we are now, story-wise: Garrosh and the trainees underground, looking for a way out.

 

Is the entire supporting cast from within the game?

Mostly, but not entirely.  I’ve invented a few characters for the blog – Spazzle being the highest-profile – but I’ve tried to keep it limited, and tried to restrict those characters to fairly peripheral positions in the lore.  The one glaring exception was the storyline involving Garrosh’s mother, Lakkara, who isn’t mentioned anywhere in the actual lore.  It just struck me as odd that there’s no record of who she was, or what happened to her, and besides, in a mythology packed to capacity with father/son relationships, I thought it was about time somebody’s mom got a little screen time.

Otherwise, when a character turns up who doesn’t exist in-game, that character was often inspired by a reader and/or based on someone’s game character.  For instance, both Gurtash and Mortimer (Garrosh’s personal wyvern) became blog characters thanks to mailbag letters from Khizzara from Blog of the Treant; Khizzara’s own namesake has made a few appearances as Spazzle’s cousin; doodle-prone kitty druid Taktani became a full-fledged character (and boy, is she ever a character) after making several mailbag contributions; and many of the DPS trainees are modeled on the baby orc alts of friends.

In general, though, if you see a supporting character turn up whose name you don’t recognize, the smartest first guess is that he or she is based on a questgiver or other NPC somewhere in-game.  (Wowpedia is your friend!)  I deliberately picked a lot of relatively minor NPCs – people like Mokvar, Elder Cloudfall, and Dontrag and Utvoch – to use as supporting characters because I figured their relatively peripheral status gave me more latitude to work with them, give them backstories, etc.  After all, what are the odds that Blizzard would actually do something with one of these people to contradict my own concoctions?

(Either way, if you’re not sure who someone is, I’ve also maintained a partial list of supporting players on the About the Blog page, including some of the more pertinent information about them.)

 

Speaking of which – in the SoO raid, Mokvar is a mini-boss!  Isn’t he missing?  How are you going to deal with that?

First… um, yeah, that whole “no way they’re gonna do something with this guy” really blew up in my face on this one, huh?

And second… So, everyone who thought I was going to lay out this big storyline for Mokvar, and make such a production out of his disappearance…and then have it turn out that he really is dead…step forward.

Didn’t think so.

For those of you unclear on Mokvar’s whole story, which has been unfolding gradually for quite a while, you can check here for a brief overview and links to the relevant posts.  Very short version: After becoming the victim of a mysterious attack, Mokvar sets out to track down a powerful relic from his warlock days, with the aid of a human named Deliana (who was Mokvar’s Alliance equivalent in the old dungeon set quests); over the course of his quest, he starts to behave increasingly strangely, culminating in his eventual flight from arrest in Orgrimmar.  His whereabouts are now unknown.

Stay tuned.  You’ll see where this is going!

 

With Mokvar gone, how are you handling the transcripts?

Prelinimary: The blog contains several transcripts of conversations that Garrosh has engaged in.  The premise from the outset has been that Mokvar is (or was) Garrosh’s personal scribe, and records all these conversations for posting.  This explains, by the way, a number of occasions when Garrosh mentions summoning Mokvar to an event, or otherwise noting Mokvar’s presence, as a way of leading in to a transcript.

Since Mokvar is off the grid, Garrosh has passed transcription duties to two people: Gurtash, who records his transcripts in the form of comics; and Taktani, a friend of Dontrag and Utvoch and long-time mailbag contributor, who’s started to (and will continue to) write a few transcripts, laden with her own unassuming brand of commentary.

 

What are these guild chat logs that keep cropping up?

Garrosh and several of the supporting characters play an MMORPG called Earth Online – the basic premise being that, to these characters, Azeroth is reality, and our real world is actually the game world of the MMO.  Garrosh started his own guild, called <Warchief>, and several familiar faces (including Spazzle, Sylvanas, Lor’themar, Faranell, Garona, and Dontrag and Utvoch) are members.  Also worth noting is that Jaina Proudmoore is a member of the guild…although she doesn’t realize (yet?) who her guildmates are in “real life.”

The guild chat logs recreate some of the exchanges that the members of <Warchief> have within their game, usually including regular guild chat, officer chat, and, in some cases, whispers.  I make no pretense about the fact that some aspects of these logs are based on my own guild-chat expeiences, especially officer chat.  The transcripts are always presented from the point of view of whoever posted them – usually Garrosh, but occasionally Spazzle.

 

Where did this whole thing about lemon squares come from?

Garrosh loves lemon squares.  Don’t you?

Real explanation: Very early in the blog, Edenvale of The Gamer’s Fridge posted a recipe for Garrosh Hellscream’s lemon squares, and pointed me to her post with a comment on the Command Board.  Since then, it’s become a bit of a running gag – the recipe, according to Garrosh, was his greatmother’s secret family recipe, and he was most perturbed that this random night elf had apparently gotten ahold of it.

 

What does “FYV” mean?

An abbreviation of one of Garrosh’s favorite turns of phrase, of course: “Fuck you, Varian!”  Among other things, Garrosh often finds a way to slip that phrase into his EPIC VERSE compositions.

 

Speaking of which, what’s this “EPIC VERSE”?  Garrosh writes poetry?

You sound surprised.  Garrosh is an orc of many interests.  What, do you think he’s some kind of one-note caricature or something?

Okay, fine, game-Garrosh kind of is.

Honestly, I just got a kick out of the obvious dichotomy of Garrosh Hellscream, gruffest of the gruff, also writing poetry on the side.  True to form, Garrosh doesn’t view his compositions as just any poetry, so he prefers to call them EPIC VERSE.  In caps.  Always.  It’s sprinkled throughout the blog – almost always in purple text, to stress its epic-ness – and ranges from limericks, to parodies of other famous poems, to reader requests, to epic rap battles.

 

So, that’s as much as I can think to cover.  Other gaps can probably be filled in through the Major Storylines page, but if there are questions that anyone still has, in terms of getting caught up or clarified, by all means toss them into a comment and I’ll make sure it’s answered.  And so, on that note, I’ll sigh off with the promise – unconditional promise! – that before the week is out, you’ll have the continuation of the actual STORY part of the story!  Which left off, as you might recall, right here:

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Orc Lemon Squares

Posted in EPIC VERSE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

cake

Today’s entry for Garrosh’s Poetry Challenge!  This one is inspired by a repeated suggestion from the last few days, involving my Greatmother’s famous (previously secret) recipe, and the meddling tree who publicized it and forced me to institute whole new culinary policies a while back.  Remember to make suggestions for next time in your comments!

 

Edenvale.

Edenvale –
She’s a tree.

Edenvale –
Don’t you see?
Edenvale’s a tree,
I see.

Edenvale,
She had a scare –
She saw Garrosh
Over there.

“Oh no!  Garrosh!”
Cried the tree.
“Please don’t kill me!
Let me be!

I’m your friend!
Yes!  I swear!
Please don’t kill me,
Garrosh-There!”

“Don’t you fret
Your sappy head!
I won’t kill you,”
Garrosh said.

“No?  You won’t?”
“Oh no,” he said.
“Or you already
Would be dead!”

“Oh,” she said,
The silly tree.
“Then, what do you want
With me?”

He came closer,
Garrosh-There.
And he said,
“I’m here to share.”

“Here to share,
Garrosh-There?”
“Here to share,”
Said Garrosh-There.

“Are you okay?”
Asked the tree.
“That doesn’t sound like you,”
Said she.

“Yeah, I know.
It kind of sucks.
But I figure,
What the fuck.

Greatmother says
I should share –
I should share
Her lemon squares.

So since Greatmother
Says to share,
I will try,”
Said Garrosh-There.

“So,” he said,
And gave a glare,
“Would you like
Some lemon squares?”

Edenvale looked nervous,
True.
She didn’t know
Quite what to do.

“Oh,” she said,
And held her nose.
“I really don’t want
To impose.”

“No, it’s fine,
They must be eaten.
Here, try one.
Or you’ll get beaten.”

“No, that’s okay,
None for me.”
“What’s the problem,
Stupid tree?”

“Well,” she said
To Garrosh-There.
“Well,” she said,
And looked quite scared.

“I do not like
Orc lemon squares.
I do not like them,
Garrosh-There.”

“Would you like them
Here or there?”

“I would not like them
Here or there.
I would not like them
Anywhere.
I do not like
Orc lemon squares.
I do not like them,
Garrosh-There.”

“Would you like them
In your home?
Would you like them
With a gnome?”

“I would not like them
In my home.
I would not like them
With a gnome.
I do not like them
Here or there.
I do not like them
Anywhere.
I do not like
Orc lemon squares.
I do not like them,
Garrosh-There.”

“Would you eat them
On a boat?
With a Naaru
Or space-goat?”

“I would not eat them
On a boat.
I’d simply give them
To the goat.
I do not want them
In my home.
I will not try them
With a gnome.
I do not want them
Here or there.
I do not want them
Anywhere.
I just don’t like
Orc lemon squares.
I just don’t like them,
Garrosh-There!”

“Would you, could you,
Might, may, will,
Try them up
In Teldrassil?”

“I would not, could not eat them there!
In Teldrassil, or anywhere!
I do not want them on a boat.
I will not share with some space-goat.
I do not want them in my home.
I do not want them with a gnome.
I do not want them here or there,
I do not want them anywhere!
I do not like orc lemon squares!
I do not like them, Garrosh-There!”

“How about
A doggy bag?
Served by Utvoch
And Dontrag?”

“Enough already!”
Cried the tree.
“Garrosh-There,
You let me be!”

“Would you try them
On the moon?
With Cenarius
And Mylune?”

“No, I would not
On the moon!
Even if they brought
Elune!”

“Would you try them,
Just once, ever,
Up amid
The Twisted Nether?”

“No! No! Not in the Nether!
I do not want to try them, ever!
Not in a bag! Not on the moon!
Not with Dontrag or with Mylune!
Not on a boat! Not in my home!
Not with a goat! Not with a gnome!
I will not try them here or there!
I do not want them ANYWHERE!
I do not like orc lemon squares!
I just don’t like them, Garrosh-There!”

“You don’t like them.
So you say.
Try them! Try them
And you may.
Try them and you may,
I say.”

“Garrosh, dammit!
Fine, at last.
I’ll try them –
Just get off my ass.

Say…
I like orc lemon squares!
I do! I like them, Garrosh-There!
And I would eat them in my home!
And I would eat them with a gnome!
And I would have them on a boat,
And I would share with a space-goat!
I would eat them to my fill
All the way to Teldrassil!

I would take a doggy bag
(But spare me Utvoch and Dontrag)!
I would eat them on the moon,
With Cenarius and Mylune!
Yes, I will eat them here and there!
Oh, I would eat them anywhere!

I do so love
Orc lemon squares!
Thank you,
Thank you,
Garrosh-There.”

“See, I told you,”
Garrosh said.
“Plus you’re lucky
You’re not dead.”

“They’re so good!
So good, I say!
I might post them!
Yes I may!
I’ll post them on my blog,
I say!”

“Hold on a minute,
Silly tree.
That’s my Greatmother’s
Recipe.
Her recipe,
You silly tree.
We keep it
In the family!”

“But oh, they’re so good,
Garrosh-There!
They’re just too yummy
Not to share!
I’m sure your Greatmother
Won’t care!
I’ll spread her secret
Everywhere!

Now don’t get mad,
Garrosh! Relax!”

But he had gone
To get his axe.

 

EPIC VERSE!

Without Breaking a Few Eggs

Posted in From the Desk of Saurfang with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 27, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

marogg

Citizens of the Horde,

Some days ago I wrote to you in acknowledgement of certain accolades that had been given to Warchief Hellscream for his work on this forum.  In so doing, I noted that perhaps I should begin perusing the internet, as it was apparently home to a great many laudable works such as those being recognized by these so-called “Piggie Awards.”  True to my word, I have these past few days invested some time surveying – I am told that “surfing” is the descriptive metaphor currently in fashion – the internet.

I am both impressed and, indeed, not infrequently horrified.

While undertaking my “surfing,” I did make a point of investigating the works of those other bloggers nominated with Warchief Hellscream.  I was particularly delighted to discover that on Edenvale’s Gamer’s Fridge blog, the Warchief had apparently volunteered the delicious lemon squares recipe of his dear Greatmother in Nagrand: a treat indeed, and one that I know was always a favorite of my son Dranosh.  I find myself once again impressed by the Warchief for having offered this recipe to be freely shared across the internet.  Truly his generosity and thoughtfulness know no bounds.

In contrast, I was appalled to discover that this same recipe was being offered at a cost by one of our own, Orgrimmar infantry chef Marogg.  Upon further investigation, I found that this was far from the only recipe that Marogg was dispensing in such a manner; indeed, it would appear that he had devised an entire system by which recipes could be purchased with “Orgrimmar Cooking Awards,” which even more troublingly can only be acquired by performing menial tasks for this same Marogg.

I am, quite frankly, rather enraged that our infantry chef would extort labor from our own people in this fashion.  My outrage was magnified, as you might imagine, upon discovering that among these menial tasks was a request for Horde citizens to steal rice from our own people – the less fortunate residents of the Valley of Spirits, no less.

I cannot overstate what a vile undertaking I find this entire charade to be.  As such, I have relieved Marogg of his duties pending a full investigation of the matter, and appointed his sous chef Gar’dul as head infantry chef.

I will write again soon with updates on more pressing matters.

 

-Saurfang

A Commendation of Public Record, Involving the Internet

Posted in From the Desk of Saurfang with tags , , , , , , , on January 23, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

quillandpaper

As I believe I have made clear on at least one occasion, I am admittedly not as familiar with the ways of the internet as are my younger colleagues.  As the latest illustration of this fact, I was not aware that this forum allowed for its readers to reply directly to my letters, in the form of “comments” that are appended to the end of my message.  This was, however, brought to my attention by my calligraphically adroit aide Mokvar, by way of his directing my attention to a response to yesterday’s message.  In it, a reader rightfully praised Warchief Hellscream for his efforts in the creation of this blog, and moreover alluded to a more official recognition conferred a few short days ago.  As I have had confirmed by the telecommunicative goblin Spazzle Fizzletrinket, Warchief Hellscream was recently the recipient of an honorable mention in the category of Most Noticed Blogger Breakthrough in this year’s “Piggie Awards” as presented at MMOMeltingPot.

I will confess, I do not understand what this means.  Nevertheless, it is doubtless a very great honor for the Warchief, one for which I heartily congratulate him, and moreover, since I am currently serving as acting Warchief myself, I feel it only appropriate that I should accept this accolade on Warchief Hellscream’s behalf.

Therefore, I wish to thank whatever persons or entities are responsible for the awarding of this honor.  I do not know what the process of nomination entails, or indeed if there is one, and even if there is, I am unsure of exactly how one advances from nominee to award recipient.  Presumably it does not involve honorable combat, as the Warchief would not have been present of late to participate; though I suppose it is not out of the realm of possibility that his would-be opponent would have seen his matchup and, assuming the attempt would be futile, forfeited the match without having learned of Warchief Hellscream’s current situation.

[This reminds me: Someone once challenged Saurfang to a duel.  Before Saurfang had a chance to respond, the challenger realized what he’d just done and ran away…and kept running.  When the challenger had gotten 100 miles away, Saurfang said “I accept.”  The challenger immediately fell down dead on the ground.  –Mkvr., ed.]

In any case, I would like to offer my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to whoever may have been involved in the nomination, and/or voting, and/or vetting, and/or selection that led to this award, provided that there were people undertaking such things in some form.  I would also like to recognize nominees Stubborn of Sheep the Diamond, Niki “Edenvale” Casselberry of Gamer’s Fridge, and the writers of Flavor Text Lore; fellow honorable mention recipient Bravetank of the eponymous blog; and of course, my highest respect and honor to this year’s winner, Apple Cider of Apple Cider Mage.

Again, I would beg my readers’ forgiveness for the fact that, in all candidness, I do not know who any of these people are.  I am assured, however, by the digitally bookwormish goblin Mr. Fizzletrinket, who is familiar with the works of the above authors, that this recognition is well-deserved indeed.  I may in fact need to make an effort to begin perusing this internet of which I’ve heard so much, as it would seem I am missing out on a great deal.

Turning back to more corporeal concerns, the investigation is progressing steadily, and I will have a number of updates and thoughts to share with you all in my next letter.

Thank you once again on behalf of Warchief Hellscream, friends.  Honor go with us all.

 

-Saurfang

Cake Ogar

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , on September 16, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

cake

Some of you might remember that last week, a TROUBLEMAKING TREE went and screwed up the whole damn Orgrimmar Cooking Award system by posting my Greatmother’s secret lemon square recipe online.  Since then I’ve been trying to think of a way to get the situation under control again, not to mention find something else to keep Marogg occupied now that his Cooking Awards are devalued, but now, you know what, fuck it, the cat’s out of the bag.  Time for Plan B.

Since I can’t stop Edenvale from handing out Greatmother’s recipe, I’m just going to have to come at this from the other direction and make it a pointless exercise.  So effective immediately – ALL HORDE CITIZENS WILL HAVE LEMON SQUARES AND TEA WITH THE WARCHIEF, OR YOU DIE!

You heard me!  How do you like THEM apples, Edenvale?  Or, um, lemon squares.

You!  Shaman!  LEMON SQUARES OR DEATH?

“Um, lemon squares, please.”

VERY WELL!  Give him lemon squares!  How about you, rogue?  LEMON SQUARES OR DEATH?

“Um…well…lemon squares for me too.”

VERY WELL!  Give him lemon squares too!  Hmm, someone get Marogg working on more of these lemon squares, we’re gonna run out at this rate.  You!  Mage!  LEMON SQUARES OR DEATH?

“Uh, you know I can just conjure my own—”

SOUNDS LIKE “DEATH” TO ME!

“Wait, no, I meant lemon squares!”

Didn’t sound like it to me!  I think you chose death!

“No!  Lemon squares!  I meant lemon squares!”

That’s more like it!  Okay then, how about you, paladin?  LEMON SQUARES OR DEATH?

“Lemon squares, please.”

Well we’re OUT of lemon squares!  I only had one platter of them and I didn’t expect such a rush!  So what do you want?

“So my choice is ‘or death’?”

Um…hmm.  Is the mage still around?

*bubbles*