Moral swap?

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What's happening now is a moral swap. The Horde didn't use to be the bad guys.

At the start of WoW, the Alliance didn't really have any sort of claim on being "good".

They came in here with a whole lot of pretty recent baggage about putting Orcs in camps, an attempted purging of the Blood Elves on pretty flimsy "You RECEIVED HELP FROM THESE LIZARD-PEOPLE WHO ARE CLEARLY EVIL, even though, uh, they only recently surfaced in any real numbers!" grounds, and Admiral Proudmoore showing up in Kalimdor to throw a big Kill All Orcs kegger.

Then, on top of it, they had a bunch of "corruption" undertones going on in WoW itself. The Defias were running rampant, a black dragon was living in Stormwind Keep, and Staghelm was a giant jerk doing something sketchy with Morrowgrain. Horde-side, you had Thrall and his inspiring story and his "I love eeeveryone" mentality - and the Tauren, who were basically as innocent as an eight-foot-tall baby with giant horns.

There was also Tirion, who was clearly a major hero - but got exiled for befriending an Orc.

The "Horde are monsters!" stuff dated back to WCII, and had gotten softened and sanded down since. If anything, viewing them as Monsters was the bigoted, narrow-minded attitude of some humans - and a reason why many humans were "bad".

For a while, the two sides were pretty morally ambiguous. People could argue that the Alliance made a show of nobility, but were really corrupt, rigid, and intolerant underneath - while the Horde were rough but valued honor and were close to the spirits/the land. People could also argue that the Horde shouldn't be left off the hook for what they did to the Draenei and the humans during the first two wars. There were plenty of "bad guys" out in the world - but the two factions were grey.

The shift happened more recently.

The Alliance hasn't been doing anything really wicked or bigoted for a while now. Varian was a bit of a jerk for a while ("May this death god take you all") but there was another, even bigger jerk on the Horde-side goading him. Since then, Varian has settled down - while the Horde jerk just got louder and louder.

Alliance leaders talk, non-stop, about ending the war. One of the "evilest" things the Alliance has done in recent times was the attack on Taurajo - but if you talk to the general who did it, he's not a warmonger. He keeps talking about how he regrets it, how the Alliance can't resort to butchery because, if they do, the war will never end, and how he intentionally let the civilians leave, even against the wishes of some other Alliance leaders.

In MoP, it's even MORE extreme. At this point, it's hard to find Alliance members who won't go into a speech about how this war isn't about hatred and how they don't hate Orcs, and would totally settle for peace if the Horde would just agree to stop taking everything and killing everyone who has a problem with it.

The Alliance has been completely white-washed. All of our jerks and shady characters are gone. Staghelm went craaaaazy (and introduced us to his equally-crazy daughter-in-law, with her craaaazy "I'm upset because the Horde killed her child and Malfurion and the Cenarion Circle do nothing about it" nonsense). Maiev never even made it back into the game - she went crazy in a book. We haven't seen a new Garithos, or Blackmoor, or Daelin Proudmoore show up in WoW at all. Varian's all about patience and "what's right" these days. We don't even have any characters doing the "when you stare into the abyss" thing - they're not turning just as bad as they think the Orcs are. We're just dedicated to being calm, and rational, and trying hard as we can not to "sink to their level". It's downright annoying - though maybe that's because the best example of this is when Varian lectures a twelve-thousand-year-old woman who has been leading armies before his kingdom even existed in much the same way that he lectured his son ten minutes earlier.

To be honest, I don't think that does any favors to Horde players. Most of them - especially the long-time Horde players - didn't sign up for the Legion of Doom. The Horde began life as a sort of Anti-hero - a "rough, angry guy with a heart of gold" sort of thing - and anyone who came to the Horde for that is feeling really out of place right now.

Though, really, I don't think the Horde players who defended their faction's actions up to this point did their faction any favors, either. It might've been better to object to it as it was happening to convince the writers NOT to go down this route - instead of trying to defend their faction like it was a real-life political party.


This is pretty much how I feel. Great post!

In MoP though the Horde is seeming straight up Evil. They are worse than the Imperials in SWOTR. Meanwhile the Alliance has ONE angry lady on an airship and every other NPC full of holy light and forgiveness.

In MoP though the Horde is seeming straight up Evil.


The horde hasn't actually done anything objectively evil though.
12/03/2012 02:06 AMPosted by Moogetsu
The horde hasn't actually done anything objectively evil though.

It depends on your morals.

To the Alliance, the Horde (Before Garrosh), and to Garrosh himself in the past, what the Horde has done is evil, or at least worthy of death.
Worgen, Night Elves, and Dark Irons in favor of the more traditional Human, High Elf, and mountain Dwarf team-up?

A Dark Alliance would be great.


I think Humans should join too... they just have to be Death Knights and Warlocks rather than white knights.

Also, it's beginning to be a turning point for me where I utterly despise it when someone puts "dark" and "evil" in the same category.
12/03/2012 02:06 AMPosted by Moogetsu
The horde hasn't actually done anything objectively evil though.


As soon as someone points out one of the dozen evil acts they've done over the past couple of expansions you're just going to claim that morals are subjective anyway so they can never do anything objectively evil.

This song and dance has been done many times.
As soon as someone points out one of the dozen evil acts they've done over the past couple of expansions you're just going to claim that morals are subjective anyway so they can never do anything objectively evil.

This song and dance has been done many times.


Moral relativism is greatly exaggerated, to the point of being a crock most of the time it's brought up. It of course exists to some degree, but that's mostly on a semantic level.

But I also think the word 'evil' is thrown around way too loosely as well. We're often freely equivocate the idea that anything inherently nonaltruistic is somehow evil. Nevermind that the word is in many ways not particularly meaningful since it tends to have more to do with intentions than actions, though that distinction isn't particularly applicable here.

The Horde is certainly expansionist, underhanded and not particularly nice to the Alliance, but none of those are inherently evil qualities.

Ultimately though Blizzard's goals for the expansion will wash away any depth to this discussion regardless.
12/03/2012 02:35 AMPosted by Moogetsu
The Horde is certainly expansionist, underhanded and not particularly nice to the Alliance, but none of those are inherently evil qualities.


The Horde currently has a stated goal of genocide. If you don't think that genocide qualifies as objective evil then this conversation is pointless.
12/03/2012 02:37 AMPosted by Vyrin
The Horde currently has a stated goal of genocide. If you don't think that genocide qualifies as objective evil then this conversation is pointless.


Genocide for Genocide's sake? Probably. For the Horde it's a potential means to an end. Realistically though it would probably be averted if the Horde ever reached a position where the concept would even be relevant. That's getting speculative though. The positions of the two army and the inevitable end goal of the expansion make discussing the point purely philosophical.
Objectively evil? Not as an organization.

But they have broken their own morals.
What's happening now is a moral swap. The Horde didn't use to be the bad guys.

At the start of WoW, the Alliance didn't really have any sort of claim on being "good".

They came in here with a whole lot of pretty recent baggage about putting Orcs in camps, an attempted purging of the Blood Elves on pretty flimsy "You RECEIVED HELP FROM THESE LIZARD-PEOPLE WHO ARE CLEARLY EVIL, even though, uh, they only recently surfaced in any real numbers!" grounds, and Admiral Proudmoore showing up in Kalimdor to throw a big Kill All Orcs kegger.

Then, on top of it, they had a bunch of "corruption" undertones going on in WoW itself. The Defias were running rampant, a black dragon was living in Stormwind Keep, and Staghelm was a giant jerk doing something sketchy with Morrowgrain. Horde-side, you had Thrall and his inspiring story and his "I love eeeveryone" mentality - and the Tauren, who were basically as innocent as an eight-foot-tall baby with giant horns.

There was also Tirion, who was clearly a major hero - but got exiled for befriending an Orc.

The "Horde are monsters!" stuff dated back to WCII, and had gotten softened and sanded down since. If anything, viewing them as Monsters was the bigoted, narrow-minded attitude of some humans - and a reason why many humans were "bad".

For a while, the two sides were pretty morally ambiguous. People could argue that the Alliance made a show of nobility, but were really corrupt, rigid, and intolerant underneath - while the Horde were rough but valued honor and were close to the spirits/the land. People could also argue that the Horde shouldn't be left off the hook for what they did to the Draenei and the humans during the first two wars. There were plenty of "bad guys" out in the world - but the two factions were grey.

The shift happened more recently.

The Alliance hasn't been doing anything really wicked or bigoted for a while now. Varian was a bit of a jerk for a while ("May this death god take you all") but there was another, even bigger jerk on the Horde-side goading him. Since then, Varian has settled down - while the Horde jerk just got louder and louder.

Alliance leaders talk, non-stop, about ending the war. One of the "evilest" things the Alliance has done in recent times was the attack on Taurajo - but if you talk to the general who did it, he's not a warmonger. He keeps talking about how he regrets it, how the Alliance can't resort to butchery because, if they do, the war will never end, and how he intentionally let the civilians leave, even against the wishes of some other Alliance leaders.

In MoP, it's even MORE extreme. At this point, it's hard to find Alliance members who won't go into a speech about how this war isn't about hatred and how they don't hate Orcs, and would totally settle for peace if the Horde would just agree to stop taking everything and killing everyone who has a problem with it.

The Alliance has been completely white-washed. All of our jerks and shady characters are gone. Staghelm went craaaaazy (and introduced us to his equally-crazy daughter-in-law, with her craaaazy "I'm upset because the Horde killed her child and Malfurion and the Cenarion Circle do nothing about it" nonsense). Maiev never even made it back into the game - she went crazy in a book. We haven't seen a new Garithos, or Blackmoor, or Daelin Proudmoore show up in WoW at all. Varian's all about patience and "what's right" these days. We don't even have any characters doing the "when you stare into the abyss" thing - they're not turning just as bad as they think the Orcs are. We're just dedicated to being calm, and rational, and trying hard as we can not to "sink to their level". It's downright annoying - though maybe that's because the best example of this is when Varian lectures a twelve-thousand-year-old woman who has been leading armies before his kingdom even existed in much the same way that he lectured his son ten minutes earlier.

To be honest, I don't think that does any favors to Horde players. Most of them - especially the long-time Horde players - didn't sign up for the Legion of Doom. The Horde began life as a sort of Anti-hero - a "rough, angry guy with a heart of gold" sort of thing - and anyone who came to the Horde for that is feeling really out of place right now.

Though, really, I don't think the Horde players who defended their faction's actions up to this point did their faction any favors, either. It might've been better to object to it as it was happening to convince the writers NOT to go down this route - instead of trying to defend their faction like it was a real-life political party.


This is pretty much how I feel. Great post!

In MoP though the Horde is seeming straight up Evil. They are worse than the Imperials in SWOTR. Meanwhile the Alliance has ONE angry lady on an airship and every other NPC full of holy light and forgiveness.


Well let's see here.

The REASON they were in Internment Camps, and the REASON the Old and New Alliance had bigoted feelings towards them MIGHT...just MIGHT...have something to do with the invasion the orcs spearheaded against Azeroth back in WC1 and WC2. Considering that they could've just executed every last one of them, and would've been justified in that, I think it's quite morally good that they didn't give into those impulses.

Coupled with the fact that after Thrall broke them out the gist of the first message he sent Terenas "Give us land and leave us alone or we'll be back" isn't exactly groundwork for trust.

And guess what.

Garithos? He was basically the last leader of the OLD ALLIANCE. You know how Horde fans like to froth at the mouth and point out the difference between the OLD HORDE and the NEW HORDE? Same thing Alliance side. Only difference is that you don't see us building statues honouring Garithos.

You play the Fandral card, I play the Magatha card. We both know she's going to become a raid or dungeon boss at some point.

I'm not saying that the faction weren't gray. Just that the Alliance was a lighter shade of gray. The only reason the Horde was gray was because Metzen had a hard on for Thrall and because he wanted to do something different from the straight up good vs evil (Of course if you WANTED to play evil you played Horde for the Forsaken).
The REASON they were in Internment Camps, and the REASON the Old and New Alliance had bigoted feelings towards them MIGHT...just MIGHT...have something to do with the invasion the orcs spearheaded against Azeroth back in WC1 and WC2. Considering that they could've just executed every last one of them, and would've been justified in that, I think it's quite morally good that they didn't give into those impulses.

Burning Legion.
12/03/2012 05:31 AMPosted by Pyronaptor
The REASON they were in Internment Camps, and the REASON the Old and New Alliance had bigoted feelings towards them MIGHT...just MIGHT...have something to do with the invasion the orcs spearheaded against Azeroth back in WC1 and WC2. Considering that they could've just executed every last one of them, and would've been justified in that, I think it's quite morally good that they didn't give into those impulses.

Burning Legion.


Did they know about it back then...No. As far as they were concerned evil green guys invaded their world with the intent of taking it for their own.
12/03/2012 06:41 AMPosted by Zophor
Did they know about it back then...No. As far as they were concerned evil green guys invaded their world with the intent of taking it for their own.

But they know it now.
12/03/2012 06:51 AMPosted by Pyronaptor
Did they know about it back then...No. As far as they were concerned evil green guys invaded their world with the intent of taking it for their own.

But they know it now.


They may know it now, but they also have orcs who feel morally wronged for being put into internment camps instead of being given an honourable death breathing down their necks.

They also now have orcs NOT UNDER ANY DEMON BLOOD acting in the same manner as those that did. Really makes you wonder just what did the demon blood actually do.
12/03/2012 06:51 AMPosted by Pyronaptor
Did they know about it back then...No. As far as they were concerned evil green guys invaded their world with the intent of taking it for their own.

But they know it now.


It still doesn't excuse what the orcs did to humanity and the Alliance in WC1 and WC2. The orcs knew exactly what they were doing, but for the most part, they didn't care. Which is part of what the demon blood did to them. It numbed them, yet the orcs actions were there own. There were orcs and at least one clan that didn't partake in drinking of the blood, yet they committed horrendous atrocities. Not to mention the slaughter that happened before they drank Mannaroth's blood.

12/03/2012 02:41 AMPosted by Moogetsu
Genocide for Genocide's sake? Probably. For the Horde it's a potential means to an end. Realistically though it would probably be averted if the Horde ever reached a position where the concept would even be relevant. That's getting speculative though. The positions of the two army and the inevitable end goal of the expansion make discussing the point purely philosophical.


That doesn't make it any less evil. Especially since they are wiping out entire races so they can take their land.
The last thing the Horde has done that could be considered evil would be nuking Theramoore. Other than that, from what little we have seen, the Horde has simply become more aggressive in it's expansion.

But yeah, the Nuking of Theramoore was a @%!*%*#% move
The Horde (Mostly Forsaken and Orcs) like being the underdog so much that they almost ALWAYS instigate conflict with the Alliance to then turn around and say how unfairly the Alliance is treating them, all in order to satisfy their lust for war.

If there were no Orcs or Undead, the Horde and Alliance would probably be at peace.
Not that I have anything against the Horde or more specifically Orcs personally, but I don't see how Horde players can defend the Orc vantage point when the whole reason they are here AT ALL is because they INVADED Azeroth with the intent to wipe it out.

Now they QQ about how they have the right to be ther too. Excuse me? You weren't even born here :P
The children were, like Thrall.
Now they QQ about how they have the right to be ther too. Excuse me? You weren't even born here :P


Everyone of Azeroth must learn, sooner or later, that the Horde is not "visiting" this world. We are here. We are staying.

EDIT:

http://www.wowhead.com/quest=30127/threat-from-dojan

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