World of Warcraft’s New World Boss and Its Connection to Shadowlands

In World of Warcraft’s newest content, the new world bosses have a strange link to Shadowlands. The dialogue spoken after these foes are put down left many fans exasperated and befuddled.

The latest release of World of Warcraft, Embers of Neltharion, brought with it the largest content patch to the game’s Dragonflight expansion. This patch included new chapters of the story campaign, the Aberrus raid, and a set of activities for WoW players to attempt, such as the Zaqali Elders, two world bosses situated in the Zaralek Cavern region.

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Players of World of Warcraft must face off against Gholna and Vakan, two Djaradin warlords who recently managed to break out of prison. After the two are defeated, Vakan’s final words refer to a “Shadowlands Arena,” leaving many followers of the game confused and bewildered. This reference to World of Warcraft: Shadowlands has caused a stir among fans.

Those well-versed in the World of Warcraft’s prior expansion would recognize the arena in question as the Theater of Pain, found in the heart of Maldraxxus – one of four realms in the Shadowlands. The arena was the site of a dungeon in Shadowlands and a place where gamers could challenge other world bosses throughout the expansion. Notably, it is also present in the afterlife of the World of Warcraft universe- a region of which the Djaradin would be unaware, even among the most ancient and powerful of the Zaqali Elders.

The clumsy mention of Shadowlands did not go over well with fans. This reference was viewed as a failed attempt to keep the unpopular expansion relevant, and it was considered too overt by some. In addition, it was thought to be incongruous with the lore of Shadowlands, as the souls of the dead are supposed to be sent to Oribos before reaching Maldraxxus. Overall, most fans would rather this expansion be forgotten, neglected, or entirely redacted from World of Warcraft.

Some players had alternative ideas on how Blizzard could make the reference to the Shadowlands fit better in World of Warcraft. One fan proposed that they alter the dialogue to make reference to an “eternal arena” or an “endless battlefield” instead, thus keeping the reference to the Shadowlands but in a less explicit and jarring manner. However, it is unlikely Blizzard will make this modification to the line in the future or ‘retcon’ the Shadowlands expansion. Hopefully, any future references to the controversial era of World of Warcraft will be handled with more delicacy than the Zaqali Elders.

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