Depression and Char Development (Spoilers)

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11/02/2018 11:52 PMPosted by Saiphas
Yes that was what I was trying to convey there, as poor as I did.

I think it does do that, but while Saurfang might make it through to actually helping the Horde and the Alliance through this, Saurfang's going to need a lot more help afterwards to heal. He needs more than just himself. He needs more Zappyboi and more family - he needs his Horde back - in order to recover. Which I hope he gets.
@Asoni

Sylvanas has a quality that is extremly important in any leader, conviction. She is absolutely convinced of her rightness and is able to articulate her line of argument in cold logic. It is really powerful when others are uncertain to be certain. Yes, depression and doubt are key parts of the narrative that has been set up in the post legion world.
Why? Why is Sylvanas that intimidating? No one in the Horde likes her. She has almost no political power. She offers little strategic weight to the Horde, outside of the Blight, and most of the Horde is uncomfortable with that as it is. She has almost no defenders. I have to question if even the Forsaken are that loyal to her, consider she demonstrated she's willling to kill them if they fail to be in lock-step with her commands for even a second's hestiation. She is easily the most vulnerable of the faction leaders, having died multiple times, and often escaping conflicts by the skin of her teeth, rather than in outright victory. Is she really that much more intimidating than Garrosh? He was at least a strong leader who had a successful war campaign under his belt.

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I'm sorry, but I find this a rather unsatisfying explination. For all the villians for fear and depression to kick in, this feels like it's by far the most contrived.


I don't think he was talking about fear of Sylvanas, just the general fear of uncertainty that comes with fighting a war you don't believe in, maybe?

Outside of Baine - who I believe is right to be afraid of her declaring his people Excommunicate Traitoris - I agree with what you're saying. But the other Horde leaders not stepping in has more to do with plot than reason.

It's like the Vindicaar, if it doesn't help the story they want to tell, it doesn't exist.
those kinds of themes are dangerous and i don't think that many people would understand or like.
What do i mean? People who play wow just want to see cool things, kill some alliance/horde and say "yaa, for da horde!/alliance!" and not really want to look much deep into it.

"this character has done something bad, kill him/her"
they don't even try to look much into it or even try to understand why said characters has done that.
so the only solution to all problems is "yeah, kill him" but that is not how the world works.
that kind of behavior is self-destructive by nature, but it is what people like.

PTSD,traumas, or depressions isn't a popular thing to sell to a playerbase who usually just want to be seen as strong, untouchable and unstoppable.
I don't want to offend horde players but i got the impression that they just like to burn and kill things and scream for the horde, they love war, and any sign of peace is considered as "a weakness". just like dealing with "depression" ect.

That is why i said,that probably this theme isn't what the horde player want (but to be fair, i don't know what they want, i just give my impression of them)

personally i really,really enjoyed those themes in the alliance and blizzard has done an amazing job with the alliance side and cutscenes.

As for saurfang, i don't really have a strong opinion on him i don't think that he should die, and neither that he should be warchief i am just disappointed at him for not challenging sylvanas to mak'gora, but i am someone who thinks that everyone can be redeemed as a character. (for me)
so it depends on what he does next.

11/02/2018 11:56 PMPosted by Asoni
Why? Why is Sylvanas that intimidating?

is not exactly sylvanas, is the war as a whole.
everyone just had enough,everyone had lost much things that will never come back,characters who had to deal with personal tragedies,almost every racial leader had to deal with some devastating loss of someone or something important to them.
being cities,people,family.
because that... is what war does.
11/02/2018 11:56 PMPosted by Asoni
I'm sorry, but I find this a rather unsatisfying explination. For all the villians for fear and depression to kick in, this feels like it's by far the most contrived.
I didn't say that Sylvanas caused the fear and depression.

But the continued perpetuation of the cycle of endless war and violence, after so many characters seem to have been close to the breaking point.

Sylvanas' contribution to this is that she, without morals, even willing to go further than Garrosh wanted to, has pushed everyone to the limit that they were already close to.

People act like there's an easy to solution to how the war began. Like Sylvanas burning down Teldrassil was going to just cause Baine and Saurfang to turn around and kill Sylvanas when her back is turned. But that isn't how it happened and it was never how they portrayed it. It was a stairway where different characters were at different levels, nobody ever on the same step.

~~~~~~~~~~~

Saurfang was already at his limit, but we see him struggling with trying to abandon the ceaseless war competing with Zekhan and him representing the innocent newcomer soldiers caught up in a conflict they have nothing to do with because they have no other choice. He goes over the line, gets brought back, sees more atrocity, and goes back over. He has nowhere else to go, resigns himself to, once again, die fighting the Alliance. And is denied, again.

Baine was a bit further behind, happy they defeated the Legion but gradually more annoyed as Sylvanas goes further and further to the brink. But he wasn't on Saurfang's level at that point, and still isn't. Baine's helplessness over trying to salvage the Horde hasn't devolved into straight depression like Saurfang. He, probably, has actual cause to be afraid of Sylvanas because she all but blackmails him with the knowledge of his communications wioth Anduin.

Characters like Valtrois, who seems to just be a substitute for Thalyssra story focus-wise, are new to the entire situation and is just getting her bearings. They don't really understand all the political backstory of the HvA war and once she sees, first hand, Sylvanas resurrecting Derek Proudmoore, has a knee-jerk hatred of it.

Anduin has basically been the beacon of Hope for the Alliance. To the point that he literally hangs around the August Celestial of Hope in Mists of Pandaria. He then gets dealt a giant blow with his father's death, but seems to come around and embrace his role as leader following patch 7.2. But now he's seeing his own actions leading to many, many Alliance soldiers deaths. And he's wavering again.

Jaina's giant arc has been nothing but trying to recover from her trauma, starting to succeed, and then getting screwed again, but now seems to finally be recovering.

ectectect.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I bring all of that up to show that everybody is on a different emotional step, and the reaction to the specific step they're on isn't lined up and equal. Baine still thinks the Horde can be salvaged while Saurfang basically has, on-screen, tried to commit suicide by combat twice now.

When everybody is on different wavelengths and levels, they're not going to just act in unison when Sylvanas does something they disagree with. Even assuming they agree on every act being bad or good that she commits.

Sylvanas isn't the one that caused all the things I mentioned. They were there, almost exclusively caused by a perpetual war that that is slowly killing everybody mentally and emotionally the longer it goes on. Sylvanas is culpable in that she is the one whose actions cause the next stage in the perpetual war to begin once again.
@Etheldald I don't disagree necessarily, yet this does seem in line with the morality play aspect of blizzard tales.
You know, something I will note in what you brought up, a lot of people - especially over in Deathisfinal's thread - are associating Saurfang's depression with weakness and hating him for that. I suspect Blizzard will ignore that, though, as they tend to do for voices that lack empathy.
11/03/2018 12:28 AMPosted by Amadis
You know, something I will note in what you brought up, a lot of people - especially over in Deathisfinal's thread - are associating Saurfang's depression with weakness and hating him for that. I suspect Blizzard will ignore that, though, as they tend to do for voices that lack empathy.
This explains quite a lot if you think about it, especially revolving characters like Saurfang or Anduin. Characters who aren't one-note badasses who always kick !@# and take names get mocked as weak or invalid or badly written. Jaina is another example. As is Baine.

Also if you ever try to make peace, you get considered a traitor or a weakling or some numale cuck, *insert other 4chan 6th grader insult* I'm tempted to say its a juvenile mindset but I know plenty of adults who think this as well.
We don’t think Saurfang is weak for being depressed or suffering from trauma. We think he’s self-pitying and hypocritical, and if you think that that’s somehow acceptable from people who are depressed then you do an immense insult to all the people who have depression and arent giant !@#$%^-s.
11/03/2018 12:38 AMPosted by Yersynia
We don’t think Saurfang is weak for being depressed or suffering from trauma. We think he’s self-pitying and hypocritical, and if you think that that’s somehow acceptable from people who are depressed then you do an immense insult to all the people who have depression and arent giant !@#$%^-s.
It always blows my mind how many people just dismiss the idea of Saurfang's conflicting views on loyalty vs honor being a giant factor in why he acts the way he does. And then just pretends that he should be making the exactly correct decision every time.

Shockingly characters have flaws. And a lot of the time it just comes off as people !@#$ting on Saurfang because he hates Sylvanas. Which seems to be the case with a bunch of characters that "Horde fans" seem to have a problem with. Characters that have an issue with her.
11/03/2018 12:38 AMPosted by Yersynia
We don’t think Saurfang is weak for being depressed or suffering from trauma. We think he’s self-pitying and hypocritical, and if you think that that’s somehow acceptable from people who are depressed then you do an immense insult to all the people who have depression and arent giant !@#$%^-s.
It always blows my mind how many people just dismiss the idea of Saurfang's conflicting views on loyalty vs honor is a giant factor in why he acts the way he does. And then just pretends that he should be making the exactly correct decision every time.

Shockingly characters have flaws.


I know characters have flaws. But self pity and inaction are not compelling ones. Especially when they’ve been present since Wrath and he’s clearly done nothing to try and overcome them - a story about someone who is consistently a jackass isn’t some heroic tale of struggle. It’s a story about a jackass.

If Anduin had the character flaw of compulsive, constant coprophilia I don’t think that would necessarily develop his character meaningfully. But it would certainly make sense.
11/03/2018 12:28 AMPosted by Amadis
You know, something I will note in what you brought up, a lot of people - especially over in Deathisfinal's thread - are associating Saurfang's depression with weakness and hating him for that.


Pfft, spoken by people who've never experienced it themselves and lack the empathy to understand what it's like. I apologize in advance if this gets a little morose. Those kind of people seem to mistake depression as being sad, like when they have a bad day or watch a tearjerker movie. It's more like a war with yourself where your mind tells you that you have no worth, that everything you do is wrong and that the people you know would be better off if you just weren't there. They think it's weakness, I say it takes a lot of strength to fight that battle every day and live on in spite of your own mind being against you. That's not even getting started on the suicidal and self harming thoughts. People who mistake mental illness for weakness are pathetic.
11/03/2018 12:38 AMPosted by Yersynia
We don’t think Saurfang is weak for being depressed or suffering from trauma. We think he’s self-pitying and hypocritical

Ah. Correction to my post. You didn't use the word "weak." The word you used was "pathetic."
Yes clearly Saurfang not knowing what to do because he seems to be stuck between either following an evil person whose actions he disagrees with or leaving a bunch of innocent young soldiers to die in her battles without protecting them is comparable to Anduin being obsessed with feces.

Really? I think that just reveals you don't actually have an interest in the discussion and just want to hate on a character while pretending to hide behind a legitimate reason. Well at least I now know not to bother.
...It always blows my mind how many people just dismiss the idea of Saurfang's conflicting views on loyalty vs honor is a giant factor in why he acts the way he does. And then just pretends that he should be making the exactly correct decision every time.

Shockingly characters have flaws.


I know characters have flaws. But self pity and inaction are not compelling ones. Especially when they’ve been present since Wrath and he’s clearly done nothing to try and overcome them - a story about someone who is consistently a jackass isn’t some heroic tale of struggle. It’s a story about a jackass.

If Anduin had the character flaw of compulsive, constant coprophilia I don’t think that would necessarily develop his character meaningfully. But it would certainly make sense.


Yer, the first step is admitting you have a problem in the first place. People can and do throw themselves into work as a way to distract themselves from confronting their issues all the time in the real world. Even for a decade or more. My point though, is that people can be functional...until they arnt. I think (not 100% sure) that is what happened to Saurfang. Of course I could be reading too much or the wrong stuff into it. But that’s my 2 cents for what it’s worth to you.
11/02/2018 11:02 PMPosted by Saiphas
So, one of the themes discussed during the Blizzcon Cinematic panel was the role of Depression and Trauma in Jaina's storyline. In particular, the framing of her seeking forgiveness from Katherine, and Katherine's response that she needed to forgive herself, is framed as a way to express depression, trauma, and PTSD.

In Old Soldier, we see Saurfang go off to seek his death, only to be turned around by Zekhan. We see their discussion framing home, family, and identity. Zekhan brings Saurfang back from the brink, but only partially. He is still honorbound at that point to serve Sylvanas (atleast in his mind).

He then witnesses what he considers Sylvanas betray the spirit of the Horde once again, that being the use of Blight in BfL. The funny thing about depression or any mental trauma, is that relapse is absolutely part of the continual struggle. This is why he seeks his death at the hands of the Alliance, because he has returned to that same point that he feels helpless.

Now we come to the most controversial aspect, the stockades and Lost Honor. I am going to try and explain what I think the scene was supposed to convey. In particular, it is about vulnerability and admitting one needs help. Anduin in the scene with Genn is pretty much despondent, thinking that there would be no end to the slaughter. His questions to Saurfang reflect a need to know that peace is not an impossibility. Saurfang's admission to Anduin was to reflect that he felt helpless to stop Sylvanas, trapped by his depression and despondency.

Anduin's admission that he could not beat Sylvanas alone is an admission of weakness, that the Alliance need's a Horde that can solve its own problems, because short of exterminating the Horde in a ruinous war, there is no other alternative. The open door, is to signify to Saurfang that he can make a difference, that he can finally seek his own path to restore what he views are the values of the Horde on his own.
I feel like this should be stickied.
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I know characters have flaws. But self pity and inaction are not compelling ones. Especially when they’ve been present since Wrath and he’s clearly done nothing to try and overcome them - a story about someone who is consistently a jackass isn’t some heroic tale of struggle. It’s a story about a jackass.

If Anduin had the character flaw of compulsive, constant coprophilia I don’t think that would necessarily develop his character meaningfully. But it would certainly make sense.


Yer, the first step is admitting you have a problem in the first place. People can and do throw themselves into work as a way to distract themselves from confronting their issues all the time in the real world. Even for a decade or more. My point though, is that people can be functional...until they arnt. I think (not 100% sure) that is what happened to Saurfang. Of course I could be reading too much or the wrong stuff into it. But that’s my 2 cents for what it’s worth to you.
I mean Old Soldier having him flashback to his son's death when standing there watching, and hearing, thousands of innocent civilians dying by an action his leader gave clearly said to me that he was masking his trauma by throwing himself into his "job." Which is why he has such a sudden and intense reaction to it, leading up to him basically trying to commit suicide by combat shortly after this.

And then once again after seeing Sylvanas kill her own troops with biological weapons just to resurrect them to fight the Alliance.
11/03/2018 12:47 AMPosted by Necroxis
Yes clearly Saurfang not knowing what to do because he seems to be stuck between either following an evil person whose actions he disagrees with or leaving a bunch of innocent young soldiers to die in her battles without protecting them is comparable to Anduin being obsessed with feces.


Well no, Sherlock, I don’t think it’s directly comparable. That’s why I didn’t compare them as equivalents, but why I used hyperbole to illustrate that the idea that any flaw is a good story is a piece, heh, of !@#$.

And what the hell are you even going on about? ‘Not knowing what to do’ is not an excuse he can hide behind. He straight up said he’d kill Garrosh if he crossed a line, and then did nothing until other people took the risks of starting the rebellion. This emerging groupthink that Mak’gora ‘wouldn’t work because Sylvanas has no honor’ doesnt fly because as the damned movie and the Garrosh/Cairne duel show, cheating is political and actual suicide.

His words are ‘I want my Horde back’ - and his way of getting that was leaving the position where he could enact change and hoping the leader of the Alliance would do things for him. His own words damn him.

We’re calling him pathetic because he is being pathetic. We understand where his trauma comes into play - we’ve understood it since Wrath.

What we don’t understand is why he still won’t do anything with his own considerable strength.
Yer, the first step is admitting you have a problem in the first place.


And that is heroic. But it is only the first step. Admitting you have a problem for decades is not healing, it is making your damage your identity. And I’m all for radical acceptance, but this is a guy who is perfectly happy to demand change and growth in others while explicitly nursing the same !@#$ for years - and doing so in ways that abdicate his responsibilities and cost others their lives.

Sylvanas went too far, even I as her fan can see that. But to hold Saurfang up as the alternative, even without all this insulting saved-by-Alliance-morality retread, inspires nothing but gritted teeth and spittle. I would rather the Horde be destroyed than ‘saved’ this way.

‘I want my Horde back’ is such patronising bull!@#$.
<span class="truncated">...</span>

Yer, the first step is admitting you have a problem in the first place. People can and do throw themselves into work as a way to distract themselves from confronting their issues all the time in the real world. Even for a decade or more. My point though, is that people can be functional...until they arnt. I think (not 100% sure) that is what happened to Saurfang. Of course I could be reading too much or the wrong stuff into it. But that’s my 2 cents for what it’s worth to you.
I mean Old Soldier having him flashback to his son's death when standing there watching, and hearing, thousands of innocent civilians dying by an action his leader gave clearly said to me that he was masking his trauma by throwing himself into his "job." Which is why he has such a sudden and intense reaction to it, leading up to him basically trying to commit suicide by combat shortly after this.

And then once again after seeing Sylvanas kill her own troops with biological weapons just to resurrect them to fight the Alliance.
I mean, she just mass murdered the Horde and enslaved/damned their immortal souls and stated to his face that honor means nothing to a corpse. She is a corpse. Honor means nothing to her. She will cheat in Mak'gora.

There was nothing he could do, in that moment, that didn't guarantee he'd pointlessly die and become her slave-soldier like all the others.

People sure expect a lot out of someone when they're undermanned and witness their enemy enslave the souls of the dead after personally having them mass murdered with an all powerful plot device.

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