World of Warcraft expansion Battle for Azeroth has come to an end in story terms with a cinematic that’s more than a let down, and it riffs heavily on the end of Lord of the Rings – perhaps too heavily.
Quick background: the Alliance and Horde ended up coming together (making all that fuss about Sylvanas a bit meaningless) to fight a greater, other-world threat (a plot Blizzard has repeated a lot over the years). The greater, other-world threat this time is Lovecraftian nightmare N’Zoth – one of Warcraft’s Old Gods. N’Zoth’s arrival in the world of Azeroth was a cool moment for Warcraft lore nerds like me – this was the first time we’d seen the Old God in the flesh, so to speak.
This week, Blizzard released a new raid called Ny’alotha, The Waking City, and players cleared it in a bid to get new loot and see one of World of Warcraft’s traditional story-ending in-game cutscenes. N’Zoth’s arrival in Azeroth was a momentous moment. Surely the payoff would do it justice.