One Hundred Oddities ago I started a little blog for me to tell my silly stories and post my strange little theories so some jolly ‘net wanderer might get a few chuckles from it. 100 Oddities later, I have my own web site, I have regular readers, and I have a twitter! So for 100 oddities of sheer wacky, demented fun, I say thank you to everyone who has every come across my site, to my regular readers an especially big thank you. That being said, let’s proceed to my 100th Oddity…
Back when I first started this site, there was one weird thing that I had seen while traversing Northrend that I was determined to save for something special. It was one unexplained thing that started all of these thoughts and desires to explore all the other unexplained things in Azeroth. Just off the southern coast of the Dragonblight, along where the Path of the Titans shatters and sinks deep into the ocean floor, there is a massive dragon skeleton. So big, that you can actually see it on the mini map. This colossal dragon of unknown origin was the progenitor for all of Oddcraft, so with that said, I’d like to give you my very special 100th Oddity… video:
Thank you all for 100 great fun posts! Here’s looking forward to the end of the Warchief Election next month, and the next 100 weird things we dig up together! (Speaking of digging up… Archeology Oddities… Oh yes…)
Where? Valley of Bones, Desolace
I have a bone to pick with Cataclysm. It’s a punch to the rib cage with all the changes it’s making to the Old World and I’m rattling my skull trying to think of all of the weird ones I need to cover before the big patch comes and leaves me picking what’s left off the bones of these ideas. That being said, I’ve always been captivated with the large skeletons embedded in the walls of southern Desolace. I mean, there are a lot of stray bones in Azeroth, mostly of creatures you’ll never be able to figure out who or what they were. Heck, just take a trot further south to Silithus. It’s bone central! But these two skeletons are interesting because they seem to help tie an idea together that is deeply embedded in WoW lore, and kind have gotten concistently swept underneath the rug in favor of less subtle lore, like the God of Death hanging out in a Titan basement and Arthas’ not shutting the hell up about his crappy plan that is doomed to fail. So today we explore the mystery that is… The Dead Goliaths.
The Dead Goliaths, sometimes called the Twin Goliath (Not to be confused with the slightly less mysterious, more natural phenomon known as the Twin Colossus, which is further south in Feralas) have actually been a subject of some discussion. The general idea is that they were giant naga that fell in battle, either to each other or to dozens of centaur soldiers (as demonstrated by the arrows in their armor). Though it could be that the large targets proved to be useful as target practice for the Centaur and they had nothing to do with the destruction of the Dead Goliaths. But that’s the exact problem here, we know NOTHING about these things. We have nothing to go off of except for the remains. There’s no text that references them directly, in fact the only time they are mentioned in a quest is as a visual landmark, a simple sign for players to tell them “KILL TEH SKELETONS HERE GUYZ LOL!” However, they are mentioned in the Warcraft RPG books as an entry made by one Brann Bronzebeard in his explorations of Kalimdor, where he notes that they are: “bones of Old Gods.” There’s that name again – Old Gods. It seems to turn up as often as Twisting Nether only it carries much more weight because it tends to refer to a very specific thing, instead of an easy deus ex machina.
As I said before, most people have assumed that these two creatures are massive naga. While the connection between the Old Gods and the naga is well known, as well as the naga’s presence across the ocean shore of Desolace, I’m not entirely convinced that they are the same creature. My case for this stems mostly from the most overused plot device in any crime mystery: forensics. More importantly, the teeth on these things. Naga do not have fangs like these two goliaths do. They tend to have rows of sharp teeth of approximately the same size in their mouths, similar to that of a moray eel, where these creatures clearly have the teeth similar to that of a snake, with two large fangs. Not only that, but we’ve never seen a naga this big. Ever. Not even hints of one. Surely if naga grew this big, they would have used them before this point somewhere ( …Okay, there is Naj’entus. He’s pretty big. Maybe. MAYBE. But then there’s the whole teeth thing.)
However, there is another creature with teeth like that and while it’s a little smaller, it’s size does not extend beyond the possibilities of slightly larger variations. Another creature that Brann Bronzebeard had also described once as an ‘Old God.’ An ancient and powerful creature of unknown origin and unknown species. Oh come on, you must have thought of it by now. Heck I know half of you thought of it as soon as you saw the picture for these things. Hakkar! Hakkar the Soulflayer from Zul’Gurub. You can’t tell me the dead goliaths aren’t a dead ringer for the blood god. Which raises so many fun questions about Hakkar. Was he truly an Old God, or a servant of the Old Gods similar to that of the Faceless Ones or the Qiraji? If there were more than one, are there even more out there? Is that whats sitting underneath the basement of Gundrak?! So many questions! But I’m only going to discuss one today. How these two things got here.
Regardless of how they died, be it centaur, boredom or chilling in a valley having a cup of joe the moment the Sundering occurred, I want to know exactly what two giant snake people wanted in Desolace. It sure as hell wasn’t to take in the scenery. When you boil it down, there are the only 3 major features in Desolace: The Burning Legion area, the centaur area, and the satyr area. All of which are scattered with a combination of Highbourne and Titan ruins. So which of these things would two giant snake monsters want? Well, they could want to sign on with the Burning Legion. It’s a futile pointless effort, since Burning Legion is not an equal opportunity employer and they probably don’t provide dental since I don’t think any of their forces actually have teeth (Felhunters have beaks… Maybe? I don’t know) and that’s a huge downside for giant snake people.
If the giant snake people do turn out to be naga, it would give them a reason to talk to the satyr. They have similar origins, both being corrupted people. Maybe they were on their way to a weekly meeting of Corrupted Elves Anonymous. “Hi, I’m a gigantic horrible snake beast, and I’m a corrupted elf.” “Hi gigantic horrible snake beast.” While I’m not sure how canonical that is, but it does create some awesome mental images of a bunch of monsters sitting around a fire and one crying as it has a ‘moment’. The only other group is the centaur and the only thing I could possibly think that the snake people would want with the centaur is food. Seriously. There really isn’t a lot of advantages to dealing with those things. They’re a bunch of cannibalistic half-elemental fruit loops that have nothing better to do than to run around and fight anything they run into, even each other. Is there anything to be gained here for a giant snake monster? I mean, besides a quick snack. By which I mean eat them. Hey, it would explain why they would shoot arrows at you at least.
Location: Ratchet, The Barrens
Now this isn’t the first time I’ve spoken about the wonderful Goblins. I’ve spoken about their efficient use of amazing machines with the Venture Company in comparison to say Orcs. But despite what the Goblins have in technical abilities, I often have to wonder about their choices in aesthetics. Gnomish technology is functional, less likely to blow you up, and definately has a unique design aesthetic that when you look at a Gnome machine you KNOW it’s a gnome machine. Other than the fact that they are usually cobbled togehter machines that seem to be rusty and a hazard to your health, I’ve never seen any intent on the Goblins part to make things look good. They seem to pride themselves on getting the job done and under budget. This probably explains why things like the Sludge Fen rig in the Northern Barrens looks like it’s about to collapse when you climb it. So when I start to see things like the giant anchor in the middle of Ratchet, I have to wonder.
I don’t think it was placed there intentionally. I couldn’t imagine a bunch of goblins taking the time to drag a huge anchor onto land and prop it up for no real reason. It would be a waste of time, money and manpower for a simple visual piece in the center of town. But then again in Booty Bay there is a huge statue of a goblin standing there in robes. I’m extremely curious about these because Goblins don’t seem to take a break long enough to even build decent homes. Most goblin towns are either domes or barely standing shacks. So why would they go to such lengths to decorate?
Location: Felfire Hill, Ashenvale
If you ever needed a reason to actually read some of those quest items you randomly pick up through the game, this is a good one. I decided to flip through a copy of “Diabolical Plans” that drop off various demons in Ashenvale and found it to have an insightful twist. What we have here, ladies and gentlemen, is a demon with a heart. One he did not rip out of another person’s chest, mind you. No, this one is all his own. And apperently is quite fond of not only writing love letters to ‘lashers’ (which are the succubus’ in the area) but does so with the blood of night elf virgins (Oh, are the Priestesses of Elune becoming endangered?)
I can’t exactly blame Diathorus. As any warlock can tell you, succubi are hawt. As any patron of an Ironforge mailbox can tell you, Night Elves are hawt. Wouldn’t you do the same in his shoes… hooves… feet? Is Diathorus really such a bad guy?
Yes. Yes he is. He’s a frickin Demon.
Location: Shattrath City, Terrokar Forest
Faction: Neutral (Yet unrepeatable)
I was lucky enough to be passing by to catch this lovely video demonstrating a hilarious example of how to make the life of a zombie a bit more interesting. I don’t believe you can do this, it was hotpatched or something to that like. But watch this video, as the Flight master reacts to the Shattrath Zombies, along with some WoW Economic curiosities.
Location: The Gold Road, The Barrens
Faction: Neutral (But they might hit you if your alliance)
Just a bit south from the Crossroads (So Alliance, take in the sights before going on a muderous rampage), there’s a tent on the east side of the road. Inside are two female Horde Guards chatting away. They never really say anything though. They move their mouths, the wave their hands, but not one bit of dialogue has come out of these two. One of them does laugh at some point, so they have to be talking about something funny. I bet it’s boys. You know once you go tauren, your love life will never be borin’.
Location: Crypt, Badlands
Why, to see your enemies driven before you! Deep within the Badlands, just up the hill, I stumbled upon this lovely little pop culture reference to Conan the Barbarian. There’s no other real point to it all. The interesting thing is that they used a scourge model, which leaves some to wonder what the scourge were doing in the Badlands – so far from any territory they control. I suppose they could have come for Uldaman, the entrance to the crypt isn’t far from the backdoor to the Titan City.
Perhaps they are remnants of the titans themselves? Of course they look nothing like the giant stone like beings, but have you ever seen a titan skeleton? No. You haven’t.
Location: Stonetalon Peak, Stonetalon Mountains
Faction: Neutral (Can only be seen from the sky)
I noticed this one on a fly by on the way to Ashenvale, and had to drop some additional coin to come back and confirm it (and snap a photo). But the Cenarion Circle is apparently extremely protective of the environment. How protective one might ask? Well, they have copyrighted Stonetalon Peak. You may think it’s just some old temple ruins, but no. It’s a giant copyright symbol on top of the Peak. I’m guessing that means they have the copyright on peaks… or mountains… or Stone.. Talons?
I wonder if the Horde have to pay the Circle royalties for setting up the Sun Rock Retreat. Venture Company however gets free reign, because there is no way a bunch of Elves are ever gonna best a goblin lawyer.
Location: Warsong Lumber Camp, Ashenvale and Windshear Crag, Stonetalon Mountains
Faction: Neutral (Easier if your Horde)
While I have little to no doubt in the aptitude of the average Orc to smelt ore, crush stone to powder, or assemble small mechanical squirrels – one need only to venture to the Warsong lumber yards in Eastern Ashenvale to witness the true weak link of Orcish engineering. A serious lack of math.
Take a look at this picture. There are no less than two of these contraptions in the entire area. I can’t figure out what they could be used for. At first glance this contraption is designed to simply put wood on a wagon. But not so. This device does not have enough rope for that. I walked around it three times looking for some manner of extra rope to lift and lower the wood. Doesn’t exist. The wood only has enough rope to keep it suspended in the air like it’s seen. It’s a giant orc executive ball clicker.
Location: Ratchet, The Barrens
Perhaps it’s my affinity for gallows humor or simply the break neck pace of goblin life that has me hanging by the ropes, but I’m dying to tell you about this one.
Okay, you can hurt me for that one, but sure enough right outside of Ratchet is an honest to goodness gallows for hanging people. It leaves several questions in my mind. First of all, how do goblins get people in the nooses? They are small, the nooses are high. Perhaps that’s why its fallen into such disrepair.
Other reasons for it’s tragic unused state could be the fact that goblins, unlike both the Horde and Alliance have found no use for any form of capital punishment. They are far nobler beings in that sense. They probably just found it wasn’t cost effective. After all, why hang people when you can make them slaves for the glory of the Undermine?
Then again, I suppose they could have just bought the thing from ikea.