WoW: Sanctum of Domination - the last words of Ner'zhul [Spoiler!]

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Patch 9.1 is the first major update for WoW: Shadowlands and brings a lot of new stories to the game or continues the classic stories from past expansions. In the new raid Sanctum of Domination, we meet the souls of many old acquaintances who have significantly influenced the fate of Azeroth and many other worlds in recent years. In addition to countless innocent souls, the souls of notable villains such as Garrosh Hellscream and the first Lich King Ner'zhul also reside in the Sanctum. What Ner'zhul has to say after the battle is over, we'll tell you below.
WoW: Sanctum of Domination - the last words of Ner'zhul [Spoiler!] (2) Source: buffed

In one of the boss fights in the Sanctum of Domination, the soul of Ner'zhul takes center stage. However, there is not much left of the former Orc. Through the Folgers, Ner'zhul transformed into a monster that hungers for the souls of mortals. We got our first glimpse of his new form in the test battle on the PTR server, and at the end of the battle we learn which Warcraft character Ner'zhul will be addressing his final words to.Recommended EditorialContentThisiswhere you will find external content from [PLATTFORM]. To protect your privacy, external content will not be displayed until you click "View all external content":View all externalcontentI agree to viewexternal content.This means that personal data is transmitted to third-party platforms. More about this in our privacy policy. External content Read more in ourprivacy policy.

In the video, the following words are spoken as Ner'zhul announces his return to his wife and ancestors:

"Ahhh... Rulkan... I come... home..."

We are surprised that Ner'zhul mentions Rulkan instead of Arthas in his defeat. Thus, death is not a final end for the Orc, but a redemption. For those unfamiliar with the classic Warcraft stories, the name Rulkan won't mean much. Rulkan was the wife of Ner'zhul, she died long before the destruction of Draenor. Though Rulkan was dead, her soul kept contacting her husband as an ancestral spirit. She advised Ner'zhul on all spiritual matters, and when war threatened, Rulkan stood by the Shadowmoon Clan in times of trouble.

Fake Rulkan and the Big Lie

In the alternate timeline in Warlords of Draenor, Ner'zhul's soul fell to the forces of the Void. Source: Blizzard

When the Burning Legion came to Draenor, the Eredarlord Kil'jaeden did not show himself openly, but hid behind a mask. He took the form of Rulkan and peppered Ner'zhul's mind with all manner of lies about the draenei. The false Rulkan painted him to believe that the draenei wanted to destroy the orcs and that they must outrun their enemies. Ner'zhul doubted it at first, but eventually Kil'jaeden's lies bore fruit and the orc shaman called the chieftains of the other orc clans together to discuss the draenei and a possible war.

As chieftain of the Shadowmoon clan, Ner'zhul was exceedingly powerful and he was respected by the other clans. As he aged, however, he relied more and more on false advisors. Among them was Gul'dan, who secretly allied himself with Kil'jaeden and threw the elements of Draenor into chaos. He and his Council of Shadows ensured that Ner'zhul was appointed leader of the Horde. Gul'dan's crimes caused Ner'zhul to lose contact with the Ancestral Spirits, eventually plunging him into a deep depression.

Abandoned by all good ancestral spirits

Kil'jaeden worked on Ner'zhul's mind until he believed his lies and became convinced that the draenei were angering the elemental spirits and planning to wipe out the orcs. At Ner'zhul's command, the orcs attacked the draenei. The first attacks were so bloody and savage that Ner'zhul briefly doubted his visions. He set out for Oshu'gun, the most sacred place for orc shamans in Draenor. There he consulted the ancestral spirits, and the true Rulkan appeared to him. She exposed Kil'jaeden's lies and showed Ner'zhul a vision of a dark future should the orcs continue down the dark path. After this debate, Rulkan was no longer willing to help Ner'zhul.

The rest is history. Before Ner'zhul could warn the orcs about Kil'jaeden and Gul'dan, the orc was taken and broken by the Shadow Council. In the end, Ner'zhul was so desperate that, fleeing the Burning Legion across Draenor, he unleashed the forces that tore the entire planet to shreds. This was the birth of Outland as we know Draenor today.

The first Lich King

The dungeon master forged a new armor for Ner'zhul in Shadowlands that forces the orc's soul to do Zovaal's bidding. Source: Wowhead Fleeing, Ner'zhul landed in the Whirling Nether, where Kil'jaeden was waiting for him. He tore the orc's flesh from his bones and imprisoned his battered soul within the Lich King's armor. He would serve as a slave to the Burning Legion forever. The destruction of Draenor, the countless deaths in the war against the draenei, and the loss of his wife Rulkan weighed heavily on Ner'zhul's conscience. A weakness that Arthas later used to claim the Lich King's power for himself. After Arthas struck down the Orc in a mental duel, Ner'zhul's soul landed in the Maw. The dungeon master certainly didn't take kindly to the orc, after all Ner'zhul defied his true master for a long time. Instead of paving a path to freedom for the dungeon master, the first Lich King made his own plans.

The end of Ner'zhul?

In the Sanctum of Domination, Ner'zhul's story ends. Fighting the monstrous Amalgam, we free Ner'zhul's soul from its burden, ensuring his redemption. Whether he is actually allowed to return to his wife Rulkan and his ancestors remains a mystery. Essentially, Ner'zhul's story would be comparable to Arthas'. Without the dungeon master's interference, the orc's soul would have surely ended up in Revendreth. There, Ner'zhul would have first had to atone for his sins before being allowed to move on. With the torture in the Maw, however, his sins are more than atoned for, aren't they?

What do you think of Ner'zhul's redemption in the Sanctum of Domination? Is it fair that he be allowed to return to his wife and ancestors? Or should the orc be punished with final death and eternal damnation?

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