- "It rips. It tears. It is boundless and eternal..."
- — Dia Darkwhisper
The Void (also referred to as Shadow) and Light are the most fundamental forces in existence. Although contradictory by their very nature, they are bound together on a cosmic scale. One cannot exist without the other. Pure Light and Shadow dwell in a realm outside the borders of reality, but shades of their presence are found in the physical universe. Light manifests as holy magic, while the Void appears as shadow magic.
The void can be a source of terrible power, but it is the kind of power that comes at a price. The Light is often said to bring about feelings of positive emotion—hope, courage, comfort—and the like. Shadow abilities are just the opposite, able to impart feelings like despair, doubt, and panic. In a poetic sense, it can be said that the emotions which the Light brings about come from the "heart," whereas the emotions manipulated by shadow are often based on survival logic, and therefore affect the "mind." Although its energetic nature, it seems to also be a plane of existence; Dimensius the All-Devouring opened gateways to the Void and the Twisting Nether when he invaded K'aresh.
- 1 History
- 2 Denizens of the cosmos
- 3 Professions
- 4 Cult of Forgotten Shadows
- 5 Trivia
- 6 References
In the very beginning of time, before even the cosmos existed, there was only the Light and the Void. Originally, only the Light existed as an unfettered, shifting ocean of living energy. However, as some of its energies faded and dimmed, pockets of cold nothingness were created. From the absence of Light in these spaces, a new power coalesced and came to be. This was the Void, a dark and vampiric force driven to devour all energy, to twist creation inward to feed upon itself. The Void quickly grew and began to move against the Light, and before long, the mounting tension between the two forces ignited a series of explosions that ruptured the very fabric of creation, giving birth to the physical universe. The most unstable energies coalesced into an astral dimension known as the Twisting Nether. Light and Void collided and bled together at the edges of this realm, throwing it into turmoil.
Denizens of the cosmos
Creatures of the Void are naturally chaotic. They are a necessary part of the universe, but they must be kept in check by the Light. Rumor has it that some beasts that were touched by the void exist in a space between this world and the next.
Talonpriests, arakkoa followers of Terokk, wield the Void. They use special elixirs, made from shadow dust, to cross over into a realm of shadows, which is also where they sealed their Talon King after he descended into madness and hatred.
The dark naaru are creatures of living holy energy and, presumably, shadow energy. It is exceedingly rare for a naaru to fall into a void state, and even rarer for a fallen naaru to be brought back into the Light. A naaru's fall into the void represents a catastrophic loss for the naaru and for the forces of the Light, and it is the saddest, most heart-wrenching event for the naaru to witness. Conversely, a naaru being reborn into the Light brings renewed hope and sense of purpose to every naaru.
Because dark naaru would have both Light and Void energies, it could be possible that a dark naaru's Light and Void energies can become unstable and coalesce into nether or bleed together.
Demons are evil immortals who feed upon life and magic. They had been formed as a result of the Light and Void energies that had bled together at the borders of the Twisting Nether. Among the great demons were the nathrezim, otherwise known as dreadlords. Cunning and manipulative, they dedicated their existence to mastering the arts of shadow magic.
- "The void sucks at your soul. It is content to feast slowly."
- — Yogg-Saron, the Old God of Death
The Old Gods are physical manifestations of the Void. They are nightmares incarnate: mountains of blighted flesh and writhing tentacles that grow like cancers within the worlds of the Great Dark Beyond. These malignant entities serve the void lords, and they live only to transform the worlds they infest into places of despair and death.
Many of the Old Gods' minions make extensive use of Shadow magic, and the terrifying dagger known as Xal'atath, which was used by dark priests during the height of the Black Empire, uses powerful Void energies and mind magics to warp everything around it for some nefarious purpose. In Ulduar, Faceless Horrors surround themselves with shadowy barriers and summon voidwalkers to aid them in combat. Aku'mai the Devourer, herald of the Old Gods, is said to be emerging from the void. The quest involves putting out "Void Flames" created by the sha running rampant throughout the Temple of the Jade Serpent.
Twilight magic is presumably Old God magic of the void branch.
On the alternate Draenor, the Shadowmoon clan of orcs discovered the Void after the arrival of the Dark Star, but when necromancy was discovered, the clan leaders outlawed the Void's power. After the formation of the Iron Horde, Ner'zhul broke those laws for the sake of his clan's safety. Shadowmoon spellcasters began experimenting with unstable void magic near the Teluuna Observatory. The void's effect on Draenor also became more pronounced. Vile bloods of the land emerged. The Shadowmoon also began summoning void beasts through hastily opened portals that could have torn Draenor apart.
The undead are former mortals who have died and become trapped between life and death. One of the consequences of the involvement of Void in the undead's metaphysics is that they only feel faint sensations of pain or discomfort from most physical stimuli. This is also why the Light is so painful to their existence. The dark energy serves as a buffer that prevents the souls of the undead from properly joining their bodies. As a result, their souls are imperfectly attached to them.
When a spirit is consumed by the Void, an echo of the soul is all that is left behind. These echoes are not truly "alive" in either the physical or spiritual sense, and are merely twisted reverberations of the anguish of the soul left behind when it was consumed.
The void lords are monstrous entities composed of pure shadow energy. These beings are cruel and merciless beyond mortal comprehension. Driven by an insatiable hunger, the void lords seek to devour all matter and energy in the physical universe. In their natural state, the void lords exist outside reality. Only the most powerful of these entities can manifest in the physical universe, and only for limited amounts of time. To maintain their presence in reality, the void lords must consume untold amounts of matter and energy. They instead created the eldritch Old Gods to find and corrupt a titan world-soul and turn it into an unspeakably dark being that not even the Pantheon would be able to stand against.
Void revenants are a race of parasitic void-beings that tear holes through the planes of reality, consuming and absorbing the energies and beings within. A void revenant can be twisted by being fed overwhelming fel energy, the dark and corrupting essence wielded by the demonic Burning Legion itself.
Other Void beings
There are many different types of beings that originate from the Void. Although they aren't demons, they are often classified as such for gameplay reasons. In Warlords of Draenor, most void creatures are classified as either elementals or aberrations (although the void revenant is classified as undead).
- Voidcaller — Void creatures draped in cloth and carrying lanterns that bridge the realms of the living and the dead.
- Void god — A very powerful type of Void being, created when a naaru is drained of its light.
- Voidlord — Large, powerful Void beings, armored in plate.
- Voidwraith — Slender, wraith-like beings similar to voidwalkers.
- "We think what we see is always real, that the light always reveals what is there the same way at all times. But light and shadow can be manipulated, directed, by those that understand it."
- — Restalaan
Priests are devoted to the spiritual, that which relates to Spirit. Priestly Shadow magic can deliver great amounts of immediate damage, or wracking pains that punish foes over longer periods of time. The Light in which many priests bathe is brilliant and effervescent, granting them immense divine power. But the brightest light casts the darkest shadow—and from within this blackness, a rival power dwells. Shadow priests fully embrace this opposing polarity, their faith equally resolute as their holy counterparts—but focused on shadowy magics and mental manipulation. Like all priests, they dedicate much of their lives to worship—but they derive their power from the Void, straying dangerously close to the domain of the Old Gods. To truly understand such ancient, corruptive influence is to be driven mad. This is the state in which these dark priests thrive, embracing insanity and feeding off of the minds of their opponents to reach terrifying new limits.
Practitioners of religions, necrolytes are binders of souls and command the black powers that hold control over the earth.
Subtlety rogues are the masters of the shadows, and they strike unseen. They don't have the lethal poison-tipped daggers of the assassin or the brawling prowess of the outlaw, but their acumen on the battlefield and ability to hide in plain sight are unrivaled. Some claim the art of subtlety looks like malevolent shadow magic—but no matter from where their power is derived, these rogues are capable of performing devastating assaults on their enemies, slipping away unharmed to strike again without detection. Most rogues train their entire lives to learn how to walk in the shadows—subtlety rogues were born there.
Shaman are spiritual guides and practitioners, not of the divine, but of the very elements. The Void is capable of dominating and enslaving elementals. One way for a shaman to become a dark shaman is to use the Void to control the elements.
A group of dark shaman of the Warsong clan also began channeling Void energies near Oshu'gun in Nagrand, using the elements to channel the darkness of the void. The dark shaman used Void Beacons, powered from within the Twisting Nether itself, to connect to the void, and hidden behind the veil of the Twisting Nether, the abominations of the void began marching upon Oshu'gun.
Warlocks are magical practitioners who seek to understand darker, fel-based magics, including destructive spells. Warlocks peer into the Void without hesitation, leveraging the chaos they glimpse within to devastating ends in battle. Their greatest abilities are fueled by the souls they've harvested from their victims and they exploit powerful shadow magic to manipulate and degrade the minds and bodies of their enemies. Affliction warlocks are masters of shadow-touched powers, but unlike shadow priests—deadliest when pushed to the brink of insanity—these warlocks delight in using fel forces to cause intense pain and suffering in others. They revel in corrupting minds and agonizing souls, leaving enemies in a state of torment that would see them undone in due time. Even the most battle-hardened warriors can be deceived, landing blow after blow against the warlock, only to succumb to their suffering as their very vitality is siphoned away by the dark spellcaster.
By their very nature, demons are leeches on the living universe—but the demonologist has mastered harnessing the power of these malefic beings on the field of battle. Warlocks harvest the souls of their defeated enemies; those specialized in the ways of demonology use this life essence to tap into the Void, pulling all manner of abomination from the chaos of the Twisting Nether. While such a practice is often considered by outsiders to be wicked and reckless, the demonologist maintains absolute control over the summoned creatures. These malignant entities are fully beholden to—and empowered by—the will of the warlock, until banished to the realm from whence they came. Warlocks who command the power of destruction favor incantations of pure chaos and aggression in battle. In this regard, they'd find a stronger kinship with fire mages than warlocks of other disciplines—if not for their propensity to make use of magic deemed detestable by all mage orders. The destruction warlock is well-versed in discharging a dizzying array of shadow, fel, fire, and chaos magics upon opponents that rattle souls and conflagrate bodies. They require little motivation for the havoc they wreak, happy to revel in the destruction they cause—thrilled at any opportunity to watch the world erupt in discord around them.
After the First War, Bishop Seline investigated the dark magic used by the orc necrolytes to raise their dead. Her studies became obsessed as she tried to discover why such energy existed at all and why she began to see the ebb and flow of it in the world around her. She began preaching about the necessity of balance between dark and light, but after her death, her books were locked away in the Kirin Tor's vaults in Dalaran.
Her teachings, rediscovered by Forsaken priests during the capture of the Undercity, served as the theological base for the Cult of Forgotten Shadow. This cult uses the term Shadow to refer to reality and believes that there must be balance between the wielders of holy and dark energies; because of that, they mostly manipulate the dark energies "discovered" by Natalie Seline.
- The Twisting Nether was sometimes called the Void. However, that idea has been moved away from, and now both are different.
- Using a Void Totem weakens the barrier between the mortal world and the Twisting Nether.
- Although Ner'zhul referred to the Edge of Reality as "the realm of death itself", the Void is not the realm of the dead.
- Sylvanas Windrunner, after committing suicide, appeared in a "darkness", which was described as an infinite void where souls are tortured and tormented. The val'kyr can reach this dimension and bring back souls from it to the Material Plane; but the cost of this is to take the place of the returned soul forever. It is unclear what relation this "darkness" has to the Void and/or the realm of the dead.
- It was initially believed that the Void was also a faction of voidwalkers led by Dimensius the All-Devouring, rather than the universal force.
- The term used to describe the combination of fel and Void energies seems to be Shadowfel. The void revenant known as was infused with fel energy and became known as a "Shadowfel Amalgamation", and deals Shadowfel damage during the encounter with it.
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 16 on e-book
- ^ a b c
- ^ Ask CDev#Ask CDev Answers - Round 3
- ^ Ask CDev##Ask CDev Answers - Round 1
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 30-31 on e-book
- ^ Don Adams on Twitter
- ^ a b c World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 24-25 on e-book
- ^ The Warcraft Encyclopedia/Demons
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 38-39 on e-book
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 26 on e-book
- ^ Legion: Priest Artifact Reveal
- ^ Wowhead - Faceless Horror
- ^ Tearing the Void — Aku'mai widens the portal, allowing more pieces of himself to emerge from the void.
- ^ Jeremy Feasel on Twitter
- ^ Sorcery, Meet Sword
- ^ Vile Bloods
- ^ Lessons of History
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 43 on e-book
- ^ Blizzard lore posts
- ^ TCG Card: Sarmoth
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, 21.
- ^ Xhul'horac
- ^ Ask CDev Answers - Round 4
- ^ Dave Kosak on Twitter
- ^ World of Warcraft > Game Guide > Classes > Priest
- ^ Legion Class Preview Series: Priest
- ^ WarcraftDevs on Twitter
- ^ Legion Class Preview Series: Rogue
- ^ Ultimate Visual Guide, 21.
- ^ a b Legion Class Preview Series: Warlock
- ^ a b World of Warcraft: The Magazine Issue 4
- ^ Dave Kosak on Twitter (2014-03-07)
- ^ Jeremy Feasel on Twitter
- ^ Edge of Night