Dragonflight is fast approaching, and for now, our adventures in the Shadowlands are over. But before returning to Azeroth to discover the Isle of Dragons, let's do a little recap of everything that happened during Shadowlands. You can also re-read our pre-Shadowlands story update for even a little more context.
Arrival in the Shadowlands
Using the fragments of the shattered Helm of Domination, Bolvar Fordragon opened a portal to the Maw, allowing us to follow Sylvanas there. When we arrived there, we were able to find the leaders of Azeroth who had been kidnapped, namely Jaina, Anduin, Baine and Thrall. And we were able to make the acquaintance of the Jailer, the master of the place. He clearly didn't want to let us run away. Arrived in front of a strange stone which activated at our approach, we were able to escape the Jailer, but unfortunately leaving our companions in misfortune behind us.
That's how we arrived in the City of Oribos, where we quickly learned that the departed souls of Azeroth and other worlds, instead of being scattered all over the Shadowlands, were all sent to the Lair, increasing the Jailer's powers tenfold. This problem is due to the sleep of the Arbiter, a mysterious entity that judges souls and sends them to the various congregations forming the Shadowlands. In order to investigate this urgent problem, and to try to find our missing friends, the leaders of Oribos have sent us to Bastion, land of the Kyrians.
Bastion is the domain of the Kyrians, who have dedicated their lives... sorry their deaths to altruism and self-sacrifice, and whose main role is to accompany departed souls. When a soul joins the Kyrians, it must rid itself of the memories of its mortal life. She can also perform her Ascension, giving her her wings.
Some of these Kyrians were not very happy with their lot, however, and a rebellion broke out. The rebellious Kyrians, now called the Disavowed, waged a fierce struggle against the Archon, leader of the Kyrians. During an attack on Fort Elysian, we learned that Uther the Lightbringer, famous for being the first Paladin on Azeroth, has joined the side of the Forsaken.
It's clear that the winged creatures that kidnapped the rulers of Azeroth were the Forsaken who joined the ranks of the Jailer. But as our investigation progressed, forces from Maldraxxus, territory of one of the other Covenants, attacked Bastion. So we were sent to this new territory to find out more.
Turns out Maldraxxus was in the midst of a civil war (yes, he was too). The leader of the Congregation, the Primate, has disappeared. And since then, the five Houses that form it have tried to take power. This is how two of them simply disappeared. While two others have teamed up to defeat the third, the House of the Chosen. It was in this House that we found Thrall's mother, Draka, who died trying to protect him.
Our investigation led us to the discovery of a Runeblade, proving to be the key to the Seat of the Primate, sealed after his disappearance. After the leader of the House of the Chosen was assassinated, we were sent to the Maw to find a Baron there, who turned out to be Alexandros Morgaine, the own father of one of our companions Darion Morgraine.
And he tells us that the House of the Chosen has been betrayed from within by another Baron who has joined forces with the Jailer. We were finally able to put it out of harm's way and then open the Primate's Seat, where a message from the master of the place himself was waiting for us. A warning to the leaders of the Shadowlands, warning them against the Jailer. This one indeed wanted to reach the Sepulcher of the Founders and it was necessary to stop it at all costs.
It was therefore imperative to deliver the Primate's message and our first stop was Ardenweald, territory of the Night Fae. It will have been necessary to help them through many missions before being able to meet the Queen of Winter, leader of the Faë. We learn in particular that this region of the Shadowlands welcomes the Wild Gods when they die. This was particularly the case with Ursoc, whom we had to kill in the Emerald Nightmare, during the events of Legion.
The shortage of anima then hitting the Shadowlands because of the Jailer had terrible repercussions on Ardenweald, destroying entire groves. It was while trying to stem this phenomenon that we discovered a special seed, with which we found a very special connection, before discovering that it was Ysera, dragon formerly leader of the Green Dragonflight, and before resolving to shoot it down, since it was corrupted by Xavius in Legion.
Wounded by an attack by the Drust, the seed was finally saved by the Queen of Winter, mentioning in passing her sister (we will have deduced that it was Elune, a divinity known on Azeroth and venerated by the Elves of the night). She then showed us the Heart of the Forest, the main line of defense of the Shadowlands, now weakened by the lack of anima.
To compensate for this lack, she asked us to go and meet Sire Denathrius, ruler of Revendreth, territory where the anima is extracted.
When we arrive, we quickly learn that Revendreth is a sort of purgatory, where the souls sent there have one last chance at redemption before being thrown into the Maw. But here too, the region is facing a rebellion. (decidedly, in the Shadowlands, revolt is easy!)
We met Denathrius quite quickly, but we quickly realized his double game. He had indeed allied himself with the Jailer, storing anima and sending it directly to the Lair, instead of sharing it with other congregations.
We eventually joined the resistance, led by Prince Renathal, son of Denathrius, to allow him to take over Revendreth.
To counter the Jailer's plans, we headed to Castle Nathria to put his ally Denathrius out of harm's way. The latter was finally imprisoned in his own sword, Remornia, which was placed at the top of a tower in Revendreth, under the guard of a Naeru whom we had helped in the Castle.
The Den and Torment
Bolvar used the Helm of Domination to attempt to gain visions of the Jailer's plans. This is how he discovered that our friends Jaine, Baine and Thrall were locked up in Torment, a sinister tower in the Maw. We managed to free them, and along the way discovered the Runomancer, a mysterious individual imprisoned in Torment by the Jailer. He offered to make legendary equipment for us.
We also learned that Anduin was still a prisoner of the Jailer and that the latter had very specific plans for him. Plans he will set in motion quickly dominating Anduin and forcing him into service.
Chains of Domination (9.1)
And it was to Bastion that the Jailer sent Anduin, who wounded the Archon and stole his Sigil, an extremely powerful artifact entrusted to the Eternals when the Shadowlands were created. So there were five seals in total and the Jailer already had two of them (along with Revendreth's, which Denathrius had given him with a good heart).
An attack was then launched on Ardenweald, led by Sylvanas. It quickly turned out that it was a distraction, the Sigil of the Winter Queen was stolen by Anduin thanks to it.
Meanwhile, the Jailer, through his magic, had been able to connect a realm to the Maw. It was Korthia. This was where the Primate had hidden his own Seal. After finally finding him ourselves, we brought him back to the Runomancer, their magics being similar. The Sigil eventually revived the memories of the Runomancer, who turned out to be the missing Primate. It was then that the Jailer appeared, Anduin at his side, and grabbed the Seal.
Leading the forces on Korthia, the Primate sent us to help the Covenants reforge Sigils. We were also able to finally help Tyrande overcome the Night Warrior's power that was consuming her through a ritual. It is notably thanks to this that we were able to discover that the goddess Elune, lending her powers to Tyrande, was the sister of the Queen of Winter and, thanks to her magic, a new Sigil for Ardenweald was created.
Le Sanctum de Domination
The Sanctum served as a prison for the most "prestigious" guests of the Jailer. This is where we faced some familiar faces. The nine Val'Kyrs protecting Sylvanas. A remnant of Ner'Zhul, former leader of the Horde and first Lich King. The Kel'Thuzad Lich. And even a certain Garrosh Hellscream, who has suffered a thousand and one torments since his defeat, but who obviously still hasn't understood his lesson.
It was ultimately Sylvanas we fought against, but the Jailer managed to seize the fifth Sigil, that of the Arbiter, and revealed his final plan: to forge a new reality where he would be absolute master. Unexpectedly, Sylvanas tried to stop him, but to no avail. Disappointed by her change of heart, the Jailer finally left her alive and gave her back the soul fragment she had lost. A just punishment, he said.
The End of Eternity (9.2)
The Jailer, having recovered his lost power, departed to Zereth Mortis. Thanks to the newly created Sigils, we were able to follow him there and deploy an expeditionary force with Bolvar Fordragon. In particular, we met the Enlightened, former members of Cartel Al who, renouncing their desire for wealth, followed the path of the Founders.
But Zovaal's troops were already there to help their master unlock the secrets of the Founders' Sepulchre, allowing him to rewrite reality as he wishes. In our quest to thwart his plans, we discovered a damaged Oracle and met Firim, an Enlightened who seems more inclined than others to help us fix it. The Oracle used what was left of his energy to create a small Automa, Pocopoc, which allowed us to discover some secrets of the Founders.
While we had left Sylvanas in a kind of deep sleep, reliving her painful past, Uther came to meet us in Zereth Mortis to let us know that she was awake and wanted to help us save Anduin.
With the help of the Enlightened, we finally managed to find a way to enter the Sepulcher of the Founders and finally free Anduin from the Jailer's clutches.
However, to be able to put the latter out of harm's way for good, it was necessary to find a way to resist his magic of domination. And it is finally the language of the Founders which will have allowed us, by infusing words of this language in the fragments of the Helm of Domination. The Primate then used these Fragments to forge a new artifact, the Crown of Will, which we will use to defeat the Jailer.
However, the marks he left on the Shadowlands are still there and without the Arbiter to judge the souls, the realm of death will not be able to fulfill its role properly. The Oracle then intervened to give us a mission: find a receptacle that will serve as a base to create a new Arbiter.
The receptacle in question found, we took it to the Crypts of the Eternal to infuse it with a soul. But the sudden intervention of a Dreadlord disrupted our plans, infusing the vessel with the soul of Argus (the world-soul that had once been corrupted by Sargeras in Legion). It was indeed his death and his arrival in the Shadowlands, imbued with death magic, which had caused the deactivation of the Arbiter and the redirection of the flow of anima towards the Maw.
The Echo of Argus summoned by the Dreadlord was defeated, but the receptacle supposed to accommodate the new arbiter being out of order, things were looking very bad. However, it was without counting on our comrade Kyrian Pelagos, who decided to sacrifice himself to offer his soul and become the new Arbiter of the Shadowlands.
As the flow of anima flowed normally again and souls could be guided, all that remained was to counter the Jailer's plans in the Founder's Sepulcher. We traveled there and defeated his last henchmen before facing him directly as he began to drain the life force of Azeroth to enact his plan. He was finally defeated by our alliance of heroes and, his soul shattered, all that was left of him was his now empty vessel.
Sylvanas' Judgment (9.2.5)
The Shadowlands is now saved, the Jailer is no more. But there was still Sylvanas' case to solve. Indeed, even if she helped us in the end, we cannot forget all the pain and sorrow she caused. She was therefore brought before the Arbiter at Oribos to be judged.
Sylvanas fully assuming her actions, assuring that she was not influenced by the Jailer, she wished to be judged by Tyrande Whisperwind, whose people, the night elves, had suffered greatly from the actions of the Banshee. Against all odds, instead of granting death to Sylvanas, a punishment that would be far too lenient, she condemns her to the Maw, where she will find rest only when she has helped all the souls she has destroyed to find the way to the Arbiter to be guided with the compassion they deserve. A punishment that may allow Sylvanas to find redemption.
Cleansing the Ruins of Lordaeron
While the Ruins of Lordaeron had been invaded by the plague, launched by Sylvanas (at the very beginning of Battle for Azeroth), the Forsaken, through Calia Menethil, tried to find a way to purge the area so that they could live again. on the surface. It was thanks to Maldraxxus that we were able to find a way to eliminate the plague. And Calia is now a member of the Forsaken council. One of the first decisions made will be to withdraw the Forsaken troops stationed in Gilneas, as a show of good faith towards Genn Greymane. Another step in the direction of a lasting truce between the Horde and the Alliance, perhaps.
Our mission in the Shadowlands is now over after many adventures. It's time to return to Azeroth and take a well-deserved rest... before the call of adventure is heard again... on the side of the Isle of Dragons!