Cataclysm Trailer and Suspensions of Disbelief

So the new Cataclysm cinematic trailer was released recently and so far it has been met with rather positive reviews (and I definitely loved it). I will say that Blizzard never skimps on the quality of their trailers and definitely do the expansion justice. What I have a hard time with is the suspension of disbelief required for this video. I do not want to come across as some ridiculous cannon/lore/comic book nerd saying something like “I am not pleased! <SLURP>” or “Worst. Trailer. Ever.” because my issue is something entirely different.

I have always loved Japanese RPG’s ever since I was young and have fond memories of Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy for the original NES. As fun as those games, and all games the genre spawned, are there are always going to be tropes of those games that are better left alone. For some reason the evil overlords or ‘big bads’ of these games have a tendency to send their weakest soldiers and generals out after the heroes as soon as they start gaining notoriety and send only the next strongest when the predecessors have failed. Clearly this is all game mechanic oriented and there is no way to avoid it as level progression is integral to these types of games.

As I was watching this beautiful trailer, seeing Deathwing perched on the towers in Stormwind looking down on a city full of people he so very much hates, I was wondering “Why the heck doesn’t he just burn the whole city and eat the king?” If Deathwing is so ridiculously big and powerful one has to wonder why he puts on such a massive show and doesn’t carry through with his ultimate goal when the getting is good? Someone on the kotaku forums said something akin to “Rawr I am Deathwing and I am here to wreck your world! Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to go hide out until a bunch of you reach level cap and can come kill me”.

As stated above in the blurb on JRPG’s I fully understand that in the end everything needs to be adjusted to meet gameplay requirements and there is no way to avoid that. What it did get me thinking about was just what level are the real “soldiers” that would be involved in the real “wars” of Azeroth? Perhaps there is a reason that Deathwing couldn’t really hang around in Stormwind too long? When we were fighting alongside the soldiers in the Caverns of Time Hyjal encounter the NPC’s there had a rather huge amount of life (although their damage was muted). Is that representative of what they consider Warcraft 3 units to be in WoW. If so I suppose the question is where do players fit in at 80, and at 85 into that lore. If NPC units did have that much life how come an army of 100, or 1000 of them storm into Icecrown Citadel as opposed to a rag tag team of 25 adventurers. Similarly you have to wonder how come all of the most powerful city bosses, and their chieftains and their armies don’t descend into Deathwing’s new domain and slay him outright if they were in fact opposing enough to prevent him from killing everyone as soon as he broke free. In the end nothing in WoW ever really makes sense so these debates are largely irrelevant, but they are fun to have from time to time!


Are there any other amusing things in WoW that make your brain spin a little bit when you really try to think about it? Perhaps there is a trope in another type of game that gets your goat, or if anything confuses you.


2 responses to “Cataclysm Trailer and Suspensions of Disbelief

  1. I assumed he was there to collect the heads of his children given that, lore wise, at least Onyxia was slain by the Alliance. He collects them then high tails it with his prize, stopping only to blow up a neighborhood on the way.

    I really hope they go into Deathwing’s coming more in the pre-Cata events, as has been implied by Zarhym.

  2. Pingback: Roundup: Reactions To The Cataclysm Cinematic | MMO Melting Pot

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