Diablo® III

Next Leader of the Burning Hells

Since the souls of the Seven Lords of Hell (Mephisto, Baal, Diablo, Andariel, Duriel, Azmodan, and Belial) are finally trapped in the Black Soulstone and Diablo, as the amalgamation of all Lords of Hell as Prime Evil, was defeated in the High Heavens...

Who is now responsible in leading the demons of the Burning Hells?
Does the Eternal Conflict finally come to an end and evil is gone forever, literally?
Does humanity now cannot do something that is "morally wrong"?
Does the Seven Lords of Hell still maintain command to the legions of Hell despite of them all trapped in the Black Soulstone? How is it possible?

Is it Malthael or he is only just leading a mutiny within the High Heavens?
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Good questions.

10/01/2013 10:28 AMPosted by Catch2T8
Who is now responsible in leading the demons of the Burning Hells?
Right now, Hell is in a very chaotic state (more chaotic than usual). No demon has risen to true power, though I am sure there is some internal struggle among some Greater or favored demons. In the long term, there are two options: Hell must regain equal power to Heaven, or Heaven must fall as well. This could mean that a new leader emerges, such as Malthael, the Great Evils once again, or my personal favorite, Trag'Oul. It could also mean that it will be in the best interest of creation to eradicate Heaven as well.

10/01/2013 10:28 AMPosted by Catch2T8
Does the Eternal Conflict finally come to an end and evil is gone forever, literally?
Yes, but the Eternal Conflict is necessary for creation to exist. If Heaven is kept unchecked, they will eventually end everything.

10/01/2013 10:28 AMPosted by Catch2T8
Does humanity now cannot do something that is "morally wrong"?
Please reword.

10/01/2013 10:28 AMPosted by Catch2T8
Does the Seven Lords of Hell still maintain command to the legions of Hell despite of them all trapped in the Black Soulstone? How is it possible?
They *might* still have some minor influence, but to give you a straight answer, no, they do not.
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10/01/2013 01:32 PMPosted by Chris
Yes, but the Eternal Conflict is necessary for creation to exist. If Heaven is kept unchecked, they will eventually end everything.


Where did you get that?
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Heaven and Hell are two sides of the same coin.

From the Book of Cain

The Book of Cain:
Oral history tells us that the Worldstone "allowed the side that possessed it to alter reality and create life and worlds almost without restriction." The account continues that "angels used the stone to build worlds of perfect order in line with their ideals of justice, hope, wisdom, fate, and valor," whereas demons used the stone to "create unfathomable engines of annihilation and worlds of destruction, terror, and hatred. However, these worlds create by angels and demons never flourished. They were inherently flawed, and doomed to wither and die."

Without the ability to create worlds anymore, the only guaranteed realms are Heaven, Pandemonium, and Sanctuary. If Heaven is the unmatched divinity, they will fail to create any flourishing worlds and will bring down Sanctuary as well as the rest of creation with them.
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10/01/2013 01:32 PMPosted by Chris
Yes, but the Eternal Conflict is necessary for creation to exist. If Heaven is kept unchecked, they will eventually end everything.


Source please.

Tyrael says, in the D3 end cinematic when he believes that the forces of Hell have been truly defeated:

"Forevermore, we shall stand together, angels and men."

Those aren't the words of someone who believes Heaven plans on ending everything.

EDIT: Yes, I see your above post, but your quoted text doesn't support your conclusions.
Edited by TDW1996#1743 on 10/3/2013 2:03 AM PDT
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Tyrael says, in the D3 end cinematic when he believes that the forces of Hell have been truly defeated:

"Forevermore, we shall stand together, angels and men."

Those aren't the words of someone who believes Heaven plans on ending everything.

I see your above post, but your quoted text doesn't support your conclusions.
Angels and demons have the exact same goal: to dominate existence. This goal is eternal and unwavering. While Angels might be a bit more reasonable than demons are, they are still the opposite half to demons, only making a whole while together. It's not that the angels are now sitting in their Heavens twisting their mustaches, thinking to themselves "Nyah, nyah.. the time is nigh for us to finally conquer creation!" It's just something that is doomed to happen, whether the angels "plan to" or not. The angels will want to create what they think is a perfect world, but neither demons nor angels can do such a task.

I won't go in to incredible detail here, because this is a serious underlying concept in the Diablo universe that can be written about for pages, but it is incredibly important to realize that Diablo is set up for humanity to be the "perfect" race. One that is neither angel nor demon, but is somehow both. Carrying traits from both, and therefore shedding the flaws of purity.

Both divine factions will always create flawed worlds. 100% of the time. As it stands, Heaven will engulf humanity in its eternal conquest, therefore bringing it down with it. And again, as it stands, this will only happen because there is no equally powerful force there to stop them from doing so. Demons are necessary to angels to, for lack of a better term, spice things up a bit. Angels are equally as necessary to demons to keep things together.

I'm not sure how familiar you are with logic, but in the Diablo universe, Creation is basically an exclusive nor logical gate. What this means is that you can't have only demons, or only angels. You must either have both demons and angels or no demons and no angels for Creation to continue. Right now, we are in a bad spot that can only be remedied with either the reintroduction of a pure darkness, or the eradication of pure light.
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Tyrael says, in the D3 end cinematic when he believes that the forces of Hell have been truly defeated:

"Forevermore, we shall stand together, angels and men."

Those aren't the words of someone who believes Heaven plans on ending everything.

I see your above post, but your quoted text doesn't support your conclusions.
Angels and demons have the exact same goal: to dominate existence. This goal is eternal and unwavering. While Angels might be a bit more reasonable than demons are, they are still the opposite half to demons, only making a whole while together. It's not that the angels are now sitting in their Heavens twisting their mustaches, thinking to themselves "Nyah, nyah.. the time is nigh for us to finally conquer creation!" It's just something that is doomed to happen, whether the angels "plan to" or not. The angels will want to create what they think is a perfect world, but neither demons nor angels can do such a task.

I won't go in to incredible detail here, because this is a serious underlying concept in the Diablo universe that can be written about for pages, but it is incredibly important to realize that Diablo is set up for humanity to be the "perfect" race. One that is neither angel nor demon, but is somehow both. Carrying traits from both, and therefore shedding the flaws of purity.

Both divine factions will always create flawed worlds. 100% of the time. As it stands, Heaven will engulf humanity in its eternal conquest, therefore bringing it down with it. And again, as it stands, this will only happen because there is no equally powerful force there to stop them from doing so. Demons are necessary to angels to, for lack of a better term, spice things up a bit. Angels are equally as necessary to demons to keep things together.

I'm not sure how familiar you are with logic, but in the Diablo universe, Creation is basically an exclusive nor logical gate. What this means is that you can't have only demons, or only angels. You must either have both demons and angels or no demons and no angels for Creation to continue. Right now, we are in a bad spot that can only be remedied with either the reintroduction of a pure darkness, or the eradication of pure light.


I'm sorry to have to say this again, but you need citations.

While I don't require incredible detail, I do require some proof from the canon to back up what is otherwise just speculation.

The parts that need evidence to support them are:

"As it stands, Heaven will engulf humanity in its eternal conquest, therefore bringing it down with it. And again, as it stands, this will only happen because there is no equally powerful force there to stop them from doing so."

and

"You must either have both demons and angels or no demons and no angels for Creation to continue."

Thus far, you've offered no proof from canon to back these up, and the power of the Nephalem shown in-game and considered as canon is evidence that mankind has a good chance of (if the situation ever arises) at least fighting Heaven to a stalemate should it come to that. At least.

If it does come to that, there's still no need for Heaven (or Hell) to be wiped clean of their inhabitants, due to the difference of power between the 3 factions.

These are things players can see just from in-game lore.

I'm not trying to be condescending. I honestly want to see the sources you're using to come to the conclusions you've been posting.
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10/03/2013 04:32 PMPosted by TDW1996
I'm sorry to have to say this again, but you need citations.
I'm going to have to disappoint you. This is not something that is spelled out anywhere, rather, concluded from the entirety of relevant Diablo lore. The closest to a direct and undeniably canon statement is going to be the Book of Cain quote I linked. I've been trying to explain what this short, yet poignant quote means on a grand scale, but I don't seem to be getting through to you.

Heaven is driven by the goal of dominance. Before humanity, demons and angels fought each other for dominance, but neither could obtain it for very long since they would eventually get overpowered by the opposing faction. Dominance would be theoretically achieved by eternal possession of the Worldstone, thereby giving the holding faction the power of creating limitless new worlds, governed by their own standards. The fact that neither could ever dominate is a good thing, because they are both flawed entities whose worlds would always fail because like their creators, are flawed.

The reason that the current situation is problematic is because there is no demonic force to cancel out the angelic one so angels now have cosmic dominance. At the same time, the Worldstone is now non-existent, so there are now a finite amount of realms for the angels to spread their influence to. The ones we know about are Heaven, Hell, Pandemonium, and Sanctuary, though it is nearly certain that there are more. Since Angels seek dominance, they will be the rulers of all listed realms if they are not questioned. And since worlds governed by their ideals are inherently flawed and destined to fail, any realm that they dominate will fall to the same fate. And once again, since there is only a finite about of realms now that the Worldstone is gonzo, Creation will come to a close if Angels are allowed to dominate it.

You mention the Nephalem fighting Heaven, which is incredibly important to bring up. If not the case already, there will come a point where humanity is undeniably stronger than Heaven, and a fight would end in Heaven's annihilation. The problem is that Heaven's dominance will not seem like a threat. There will be no violent takeovers, and everything will be done with only the best intentions. Because of this, a "fight" with Heaven will not be as obviously necessary than one with Hell. However, it is vital that Heaven does not get to this position of power (because of the reasons listed above), whether through the extermination of the pure light, or the reintroduction of pure evil.

If you would like more information on this concept, I recommend reading The Sin War Trilogy, looking into the philosophies of The Great Cycle of Being, and giving Zoltun Kulle a second look.
Edited by Chris#1235 on 10/3/2013 8:01 PM PDT
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10/03/2013 07:59 PMPosted by Chris
I'm going to have to disappoint you. This is not something that is spelled out anywhere,


...

10/03/2013 07:59 PMPosted by Chris
The closest to a direct and undeniably canon statement is going to be the Book of Cain quote I linked.


The quote you're referring to mentions worlds created by angels alone with the stone and worlds created by demons alone with the stone, and likewise governed by them alone. Said worlds didn't prosper. None of the worlds currently in existence (those we know of, at least) match those criteria. Sanctuary was created by an angel (and his followers, not all of whom were angels) but is currently governed by men. Hell was created from Tathamet, not by demons or angels. Heaven was created from Anu, not by demons or angels. Pandemonium was a result of the battle between Anu and Tathamet, and thus was not created by demons or angels.

The worlds you're mentioning didn't prosper , and were "doomed to wither and die", but they were creations of the worldstone. The only realm that we know of that is a creation of the worldstone is Sanctuary, and the angels likely won't be able to dominate it. Even if they could, men are a product of angels and demons, and thus would never be purely angelic, so it would never be a world of perfect order.

To sum it up:
Your conclusion is that one of these three must occur:
1.) Hell must regain power to make it equal to Heaven.
or
2.) Heaven must fall and Hell must not regain power.
or
3.) Heaven remains in power and creation ceases to exist.

The thing is, that's incorrect. The following could occur:
1.) Heaven and Sanctuary form an alliance, with both sides maintaining sovereignty.
2.) Heaven and Sanctuary form an alliance, with Sanctuary leading, but not leading to the fall of Heaven.

Your premises do not support your conclusion. Even if we say angels will rule everything, the worlds that "didn't prosper" were worldstone creations. Only 1/4 of the worlds we're talking about now are worldstone creations.

Like I was telling my friend last night, I like your theory, but it isn't grounded in lore. On top of that, you're ignoring obvious possibilities. You said "there will come a point where humanity is undeniably stronger than Heaven, and a fight would end in Heaven's annihilation". That's not necessarily true. The Nephalem, soon to be far stronger than the angels, could defeat them without annihilating the Heavenly Host. That's a benefit of being significantly stronger than your opponent: you can leave them alive if you so choose.

I've read the Sin War Trilogy, and I know what Zoltun Kulle thought. I don't see anything that supports your theory.

If you have any actual data backing up your conclusions, provide it. I'm not asking you to say "the lore support it", I'm asking you to show us the lore that supports it. Show us where the lore says "the Eternal Conflict is necessary for creation to exist." Not to be balanced, but to exist. Not to prosper, but to exist. You've shown us parts of Creation that all have one thing in common (a thing they don't share with other parts of Creation) that withered and died. You've said "If Heaven is kept unchecked, they will eventually end everything." Show us the lore that supports that "everything". Explain how it is that you can prove the Eternal Conflict is the reason Hell and the High Heavens still exist (realms dominated by a certain faction with certain ideals), as opposed to them still existing because they are fundamentally different from Worldstone creations.
Edited by TDW1996#1743 on 10/3/2013 8:48 PM PDT
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10/03/2013 08:40 PMPosted by TDW1996
If you have any actual data backing up your conclusions, provide it. I'm not asking you to say "the lore support it", I'm asking you to show us the lore that supports it. Show us where the lore says "the Eternal Conflict is necessary for creation to exist." Not to be balanced, but to exist. Not to prosper, but to exist. You've shown us parts of Creation that all have one thing in common (a thing they don't share with other parts of Creation) that withered and died. You've said "If Heaven is kept unchecked, they will eventually end everything." Show us the lore that supports that "everything". Explain how it is that you can prove the Eternal Conflict is the reason Hell and the High Heavens still exist (realms dominated by a certain faction with certain ideals), as opposed to them still existing because they are fundamentally different from Worldstone creations.


Librarius Ex Horadrim:
Since the Beginning, the forces of Light and Darkness have engaged in an eternal war: The Great Conflict, whose victor will rise from the apocalyptic ashes to hold sway over all creation. To this end, the Angels of the High Heavens adhere to strict militaristic disciplines. ... The Angels believe that only absolute discipline can properly restore order to the myriad realms ...


Trag'Oul, The Great Dragon:
The High Heavens and the Burning Hells create their own notions of their absolute might.


Trag'Oul, The Great Dragon:
It is that the demons and angels do whenever they come across a potential advantage. They fight over it until they destroy the very thing they desire.. a fate, sadly, that is better than becoming the fodder for either...


Archangel Ithereal:
Angels and demons are bound to their natures. Demons are given to chaos and deceit; angels to truth and order.


Trag'Oul, The Great Dragon:
Yes, Good must outshine Evil, but if the knowledge of evil is erased utterly, even good may turn on itself...


The Veiled Prophet:
...a turn to the complete absence of evil meant stagnation and decay. The middle, where good and evil coexisted but neither had the great advantage, was, in their minds, the best and only choice.


Trag'Oul, The Great Dragon:
A world where Light commands would eventually stagnate. If either gained enough control of Sanctuary so that the other could not match it again, then that would be the end of all things...


Trag'Oul, the Great Dragon:
... if you interfere with what the Balance demands, it and all existence may be forfeit.


Archangel Auriel:
I believe the nephalem may yet play a part in resolving the Eternal Conflict.


Rathma:
When that day comes that the edyrem return, they must not fall into either camp, for then humanity will merely be an appendage of one side or another, dying for the causes and nothing else. Keep humanity balanced between the two, and it becomes the mater of its own destiny.


Selathiel, Angiris Scribe:
Tyrael, the archangel of Justice, is a being of balance and integrity. ... He alone recognizes the nephalem's capacity to transcend their divided heritage and become the true champions of creation.
Edited by Chris#1235 on 10/4/2013 12:35 PM PDT
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10/01/2013 10:28 AMPosted by Catch2T8
Does the Seven Lords of Hell still maintain command to the legions of Hell despite of them all trapped in the Black Soulstone? How is it possible?


I really doubt this is possible. Not unless they possess an iPhone perhaps within the Black soulstone and they have transmitters in Hell.
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Yes! Quotes! I'm going to focus on the necessary ones. If you feel I've unnecessarily skipped one, mention it and I'll come back and address it.

10/04/2013 12:57 AMPosted by Chris
Since the Beginning, the forces of Light and Darkness have engaged in an eternal war: The Great Conflict, whose victor will rise from the apocalyptic ashes to hold sway over all creation.

The victor could very well be the Nephalem, who are both Light and Darkness.

10/04/2013 12:57 AMPosted by Chris
It is that the demons and angels do whenever they come across a potential advantage. They fight over it until they destroy the very thing they desire

While a situation where angels and Nephalem are fighting over Sanctuary could arise, the imbalance in power between the two makes me question whether the angels have the ability to destroy Sanctuary.

10/04/2013 12:57 AMPosted by Chris
a turn to the complete absence of evil meant stagnation and decay.

An important question to consider here is whether or not Nephalem (even without the influence of demons) will ever truly be free of evil, given their dual nature, and whether the angels would be able to eradicate them should evil still exist in humanity (which I feel it will, given what they are).

10/04/2013 12:57 AMPosted by Chris
A world where Light commands would eventually stagnate. If either gained enough control of Sanctuary so that the other could not match it again, then that would be the end of all things...

I find this one interesting for two reasons. One, the use of absolutes, which makes it sound like the strongest evidence you have. Two, the fact that it relies on Light commanding. It's conditional. You provided 3 options: Hell must regain power, Heaven must fall, or Heaven will end everything. Like I said earlier, there are other possibilities. There could be an alliance where both sides maintain sovereignty. Heaven could try to take over and have their efforts be utterly ineffectual, with the Nephalem brushing them aside like flies without annihilating them, meaning Heaven wouldn't fall so much as become a minor annoyance, if that.

f you interfere with what the Balance demands, it and all existence may be forfeit.


10/04/2013 12:57 AMPosted by Chris
When that day comes that the edyrem return, they must not fall into either camp, for then humanity will merely be an appendage of one side or another, dying for the causes and nothing else

You can be allies without being a part of the other's camp, and you can have a shared cause. For example, fighting the forces of Hell. It benefits Heaven, but it also benefits Sanctuary.

To be clear, I'm not saying Heaven should rule. It shouldn't, as the lore shows, and it probably won't, as humans outclass them in power and are capable of self-governance. I'm saying that the scenario you gave where there are only 3 choices is a false dilemma. There are choices you haven't listed. The Eternal conflict isn't necessary, as this is no longer a two-man show, and wiping out 2 of the 3 players isn't needed for the third (and creation) to keep existing.

10/03/2013 03:00 AMPosted by Chris
Heaven will engulf humanity in its eternal conquest, therefore bringing it down with it.
is unlikely. Will they try? Perhaps. Will they succeed? Look at the power of the players on the board and answer that question yourself.

10/03/2013 03:00 AMPosted by Chris
What this means is that you can't have only demons, or only angels. You must either have both demons and angels or no demons and no angels for Creation to continue
Still lacks evidence.

I'm sorry, and I'm not trying to be a pain in the !@#, but I don't see how you can support your conclusion with the lore.
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10/06/2013 12:45 AMPosted by TDW1996
Yes! Quotes! I'm going to focus on the necessary ones. If you feel I've unnecessarily skipped one, mention it and I'll come back and address it.
The quotes were representative of one of 3 concepts: that Angels were eternally bound to their fates of conquest, that a balance in the Eternal Conflict is necessary, or that Nephalem are the future and are the key to the end of the conflict through balance.

Since the Beginning, the forces of Light and Darkness have engaged in an eternal war: The Great Conflict, whose victor will rise from the apocalyptic ashes to hold sway over all creation.
The victor could very well be the Nephalem, who are both Light and Darkness.
Exactly. A balance of the two forces.

A world where Light commands would eventually stagnate. If either gained enough control of Sanctuary so that the other could not match it again, then that would be the end of all things...
I find this one interesting for two reasons. One, the use of absolutes, which makes it sound like the strongest evidence you have. Two, the fact that it relies on Light commanding. It's conditional. You provided 3 options: Hell must regain power, Heaven must fall, or Heaven will end everything. Like I said earlier, there are other possibilities. There could be an alliance where both sides maintain sovereignty. Heaven could try to take over and have their efforts be utterly ineffectual, with the Nephalem brushing them aside like flies without annihilating them, meaning Heaven wouldn't fall so much as become a minor annoyance, if that.
To be clear, there is a similar part of the quote just before what I wrote that spoke of the same fate with power balanced in the favor of Hell, but since we are mainly talking about Heaven, I left it out.

Something that I've been trying to prove is that Heaven would always be driven to have command over humanity. They certainly wouldn't be ok with being the inferior race. This would lead to conflict with humanity, without a doubt, and Heaven would most likely lose this conflict. Earlier, when I said that a fight with humans would lead to Heaven's annihilation, I did not mean that humanity would go to the High Heavens and stomp them. Rather, Heaven would fight a losing battle until they could fight no more.

When that day comes that the edyrem return, they must not fall into either camp, for then humanity will merely be an appendage of one side or another, dying for the causes and nothing else
You can be allies without being a part of the other's camp, and you can have a shared cause. For example, fighting the forces of Hell. It benefits Heaven, but it also benefits Sanctuary.
I think the quote is pretty clear and its quite a stretch to try and rectify it like that. As you quote earlier in this topic "Forevermore, we shall stand together, angels and men." - Tyrael

The scenario you gave where there are only 3 choices is a false dilemma. There are choices you haven't listed. The Eternal conflict isn't necessary, as this is no longer a two-man show, and wiping out 2 of the 3 players isn't needed for the third (and creation) to keep existing. I'm sorry, and I'm not trying to be a pain in the !@#, but I don't see how you can support your conclusion with the lore.
I'm not sure what to tell you. I have exhausted all resources, but you reject them. I have woven what I see as very reasonable conclusions from a wide variety of concepts that can be completely justified by canon quotes from a wide variety of sources. If you don't want to accept them as being as conclusive as I see them, that's fine, but I don't think I have anything further to add to this conversation.
Edited by Chris#1235 on 10/6/2013 2:54 AM PDT
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Chris, I can see where you're coming from here and I actually agree, but it's very much a matter of opinion and it's not directly confirmed nor denied in the existing lore at all. There is however, an abundantly spoilery chunk of datamined information that virtually confirms what we're saying, but it has since been removed at the request of Blizzard. I'd prefer not to post it here.

As for the OP's question, the preview pages of Book of Tyrael confirm that the Burning Hells are leaderless and scattered. I'm sure there would be remaining factions and their respective leaders, but without being united under the leadership of the greater/lesser evils, they wouldn't exactly be a threat against Sanctuary.
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