The Return of Thrall?

Wyrmrest Accord
I think it's been long enough now that most people are aware of Chris Metzen's appearance at Blizzcon, where he asked "When will the Horde get its true Warchief back?", later confirming that he was talking about Thrall.

Now, I recognise that it's a Q&A. And Metzen's no longer a Blizzard employee. And nothing was confirmed. It's hardly an announcement or grand reveal of the future.

But let's just imagine for a moment that it might happen. Given all that's transpired in the WoW universe since the arguable mary-suing of Thrall's character in Cata, how do you all feel about the possibility of Thrall's return? Would you welcome it? Have the post-Cata storylines surrounding Thrall redeemed him somewhat, and cured him of his "Green Jesus" image? Or has the name and character of Thrall been too tainted at this point?
Wasn't he originally planned to be an important character in BfA, but he was scrapped because Metzen had to go through surgery?

I think it's extremely likely that he'll come back as a voice actor.
I'm fundamentally "Meh" on the possibility. While I'd welcome a Horde Warchief not bent on worldwide domination and willing to make pacts with dark powers to achieve that goal, nothing fundamentally will change until the overall story direction improves.

Making Thrall Warchief again - especially with Metzen no longer a Blizzard employee - just means Thrall's character will bend to the whims and desires of the story. I mean, they haven't messed up Jaina (No matter what the Dreadlord memes during Legion would have one believe), but Jaina's Alliance. The Horde's been the principle antagonist for nearly ten years - the whole reason for Thrall stepping aside was to help renew the Faction War narrative "believably".

I don't think Thrall would be a good fit for where they want the Horde to go and to be.

That said, I could see it happen to generate hype for WarCraft III: Reforged.
11/11/2018 03:04 PMPosted by Sarestha
Now, I recognise that it's a Q&A. And Metzen's no longer a Blizzard employee. And nothing was confirmed.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm almost certain they said he'd step back into the recording booth to voice Thrall again at some point. Even if he isn't a permanent employee, they can certainly hire him to do voiceover for a time.

Anyway, though, I think Thrall coming back would feel kind of lame if they didn't acknowledge all the stuff he missed. His only contribution to saving the world from the Legion was dropping the Doomhammer into the Maelstrom so someone cooler and less depressed could go get it.

There's also the whole, you know, murdering people thing that the Horde is doing now. Not that they didn't do it while he was warchief, but now it's like a thing thing. Hopefully he'll act at least a little shocked.
11/11/2018 03:12 PMPosted by Lupar
Wasn't he originally planned to be an important character in BfA, but he was scrapped because Metzen had to go through surgery?

I think it's extremely likely that he'll come back as a voice actor.


11/11/2018 03:14 PMPosted by Ursuola
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm almost certain they said he'd step back into the recording booth to voice Thrall again at some point. Even if he isn't a permanent employee, they can certainly hire him to do voiceover for a time.


Sorry, I likely wasn't clear enough in my question. This is what I get for absentmindedly typing on my phone while in the middle of a discussion. xD

I recognise that it's extremely likely Thrall will come back as a character in some form, and that Metzen will continue to voice him. That was confirmed by Metzen himself when he retired, if I recall. I'm more specifically wondering, in light of Metzen's recent Blizzcon question, what would you think of Thrall returning as Warchief of the Horde?
11/11/2018 03:14 PMPosted by Vanndrel
I don't think Thrall would be a good fit for where they want the Horde to go and to be.


I'm wondering if the current state of the Horde is where they want it to go and be, though? I feel like they wouldn't have this whole Saurfang conundrum, or write Sylvanas as so blatantly evil, if Sylvanas' Horde was meant to be the permanent continuation of the Horde.

In fact, my suspicion is that they're trying to, once and for all, pull it back to what it used to be. The old Horde that people are desperately missing at the moment. But hey, I'm likely wrong. xD
To answer my own question though, now that I'm near a computer... I really like the idea of Thrall's return as Warchief of the Horde. I think the Horde was at its best point narratively when it was his... and it's Thrall that even built the current incarnation of the Horde. Maybe it's about time he wakes up and realises that, finally, the world doesn't need him anymore. As a shaman, he's become all but irrelevent. But the Horde... I think the Horde DOES need him, personally. xD

That said, I've always been a Thrall fan. I wasn't THRILLED with Cata, but I didn't see it as the big catastrophe that many people did. So I recognize my own bias. He's one of my favorite characters from the Warcraft 3 days, and I greatly miss the Horde that he led. It's never been the same since.
I do think Thrall has always worked best as being explicitly Horde-aligned. Every time the game makes me hang out with him, I have to wonder: "why don't I just kick this guy off a cliff? He was the leader of my mortal enemies! I should hate him."

11/11/2018 03:22 PMPosted by Sarestha
I'm wondering if the current state of the Horde is where they want it to go and be, though? I feel like they wouldn't have this whole Saurfang conundrum, or write Sylvanas as so blatantly evil, if Sylvanas' Horde was meant to be the permanent continuation of the Horde.

Afrasiabi has said in an interview that he's perfectly happy with the tension regarding the Horde storyline right now, because it means that "the writers are doing their job," so I would expect them to try faction-dividing conflicts in the future.

One has to wonder when they're going to apply the same effort to the Alliance story, but we argue about that here constantly, so whatever.
11/11/2018 03:22 PMPosted by Sarestha
I'm wondering if the current state of the Horde is where they want it to go and be, though? I feel like they wouldn't have this whole Saurfang conundrum, or write Sylvanas as so blatantly evil, if Sylvanas' Horde was meant to be the permanent continuation of the Horde.


Here's a depressing factoid for you - the Horde has been an aggressive, antagonistic force in WoW now longer than it was simply a rival geo-political entity.

Even in times of "peace" - WoD and Legion - saw the Horde attack Ashran because the literally justification was "The Alliance might find something and then they might use it on us. We won't let them have it! We'll use it on them first!" and Sylvanas make a pact with a dark entity and then tell the Horde player to forget what they saw.
I feel like there are three possibilities.

The first is that Thrall returns as Warchief, which is terrible.

Regardless of how bad Sylvanas and Garrosh was, Thrall's faults still remain: an infallible, overpowered do-nothing who sparked Garrosh's war and did nothing until it personally inconvenienced him and refused to accept responsibility for it. And simply another bland, boring shade of Generic Good Guy.

The second is that Thrall returns in an advisory position, which is better.

Thrall can never be in the spotlight again. Every time he is--be it his Mak'gora, his stupid wedding or his role in Cataclysm--it's awful. But he has wisdom and his personality works well as a side character. If he advised the next Warchief (or, even better, if Warchiefs didn't exist and he sat on a council of leadership), that would be much more amenable.

The third is that it was just a throwaway joke by Metzen and Thrall is staying gone.

Which is fine, too.
Personally I miss Go'el and welcome Metzen back as a voice actor. As long as he reacts accordingly to everything that went down and ensures it's corrected. Not sure how, but I just want #mywarchief back. I love Saurfang, but I honestly think he's gonna die in some heroic effort.
Please, no... My favorite part of the Shaman questline was him finally being kicked to the curb.
I do miss Thrall. I don't think he'll ever become Warchief again, though, or even be a recurring character like he was before.

His story has already concluded and, honestly, I think it'd be better to keep it that way unless they devise a solid reason for his return.

Where the !@#$ is Rexxar in all this?
11/11/2018 04:49 PMPosted by Kurukwa
Personally I miss Go'el and welcome Metzen back as a voice actor. As long as he reacts accordingly to everything that went down and ensures it's corrected. Not sure how, but I just want #mywarchief back. I love Saurfang, but I honestly think he's gonna die in some heroic effort.


That's my prediction too tbh. Saurfang is too old. And they're not going to 100% copy the Vol'jin story. Saurfang will die as a matyr to restore the Horde's honor. I doubt he'll survive BFA, but he'll live on in our hearts!
11/11/2018 04:55 PMPosted by Enrik
Where the !@#$ is Rexxar in all this?


Also, Rexxy's running around Stormsong Valley, serving the Horde because he sees Jaina's return as a massive threat.
I wish Rexxar would become the Warchief, but I think he's too smart to get involved in politics.
I hated when Thrall left, and look forward to when he comes back. Granted there's been some pretty cool story turns since he left (Garrosh, Illidan, and now Sylvanas), but I kinda miss the oldschool stability he brought to the Horde.
I would welcome Thrall back at this point. I don't even care anymore if he was poorly written, I just want some damn stability.
11/11/2018 05:25 PMPosted by Sarestha
11/11/2018 04:49 PMPosted by Kurukwa
Personally I miss Go'el and welcome Metzen back as a voice actor. As long as he reacts accordingly to everything that went down and ensures it's corrected. Not sure how, but I just want #mywarchief back. I love Saurfang, but I honestly think he's gonna die in some heroic effort.


That's my prediction too tbh. Saurfang is too old. And they're not going to 100% copy the Vol'jin story. Saurfang will die as a matyr to restore the Horde's honor. I doubt he'll survive BFA, but he'll live on in our hearts!


Sounds about right. I just really don't see many options to take over as warchief once Sylvanas gets the next name added to "List of failed warchiefs". Bringing back Go'el would also bring back Aggra and their son Durak.

Thrall was very insufferable in Cata, but I'm not gonna ignore WC3 and majority of WoW story he's been in. Loved him in all of it except that brief moment in cata.
11/11/2018 07:15 PMPosted by Kurukwa
Thrall was very insufferable in Cata, but I'm not gonna ignore WC3 and majority of WoW story he's been in. Loved him in all of it except that brief moment in cata.


Yeah this is pretty much why I love him. One bout of bad writing doesn't entirely spoil the character for me. Especially after they went above and beyond to prove that he was NOT perfect after Cata. I mean Thrall's had nothing but failures, embarrassments and poor decisions ever since. He's on the road to redemption in my eyes.

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