Monsters of Ahn'Qiraj
This article is a copy of "Monsters of Ahn'Qiraj", an official article by Blizzard Entertainment. It's about the monsters of Ahn'Qiraj implemented in the game.
The original article, formerly located at http://www.wow-europe.com/en/info/basics/ahnqiraj/obsidian.html, did not survive the overhaul of the World of Warcraft Official Website.
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Monsters of Ahn'Qiraj
The trolls were the first mortal race to face the ancient, insidious aqir and survive against their might. After thousands of years the trolls succeeded in splitting the insect empire in half, sending them fleeing to the northern and southern reaches of Kalimdor.
According to legend, in the aftermath of the war the Twin Emperors Vek'lor and Vek'nilash acknowledged a need for loyal soldiers of great strength to stand against any future opposition. It is said that the Emperors themselves oversaw the construction of the first Anubisaths in the ever-burning fires beneath Ahn'Qiraj - even so the massive warriors were not completed for millennia. When the Well of Eternity was destroyed in the War of the Ancients, the few remaining mortal tales of the once-fearsome aqir were lost, yet still the Qiraji waited, biding their time to strike at an unprepared world.
And so it was that a thousand years ago the Emperors once again commanded an assault to conquer Kalimdor. This time their newest weapons of war were ready, and the mighty Qiraji demonstrated their strength against the prolific night elves, a lone Anubisath often smashing through an entire unit of sentinels.
Though imbued with minimal intelligence, the colossal warriors proved to be highly effective killing machines. While the strongest of these constructs served as elite shock troops, General Rajaxx placed most of the Anubisaths on the front line, knowing that the massive warriors would strike fear in the hearts of the elves.
During the war, as the elves faced impending defeat, the Arch-Druid Fandral Staghelm persuaded the Bronze Dragonflight to join the fray. Amid the frenzied battle outside Ahn'Qiraj the dragons directed their wrath at the Anubisath constructs.
The few Anubisaths capable of casting spells were far from the front lines, and so the dragons were able to concentrate their attacks on the giants with little threat of being countered. Nearly every Anubisath was destroyed in the initial assault, but among them one in particular would prove to be more resourceful than all others combined...
Though the wall prevented the Qiraji from venturing out, the insect empire refused to remain idle. In preparation for their reemergence in the world, the shadowy master of Ahn'Qiraj commanded Emperor Vek'lor to create a new obsidian statue superior to all other Destroyers. Vek'lor sought his twin brother's aid in the task, and while Vek'nilash used his physical might to craft a grand body of volcanic rock, Vek'lor fortified the shell with powerful magic.
Emperor Vek'lor named the finished construct Moam, and observed as the dark master infused it with life. He was pleased and surprised to find that the improved Obsidian Destroyer was far more versatile than its earlier counterparts. The Twin Emperors intended to use Moam as a colossal weapon, knowing that its strengths would help it survive in the thick of melee as well as magical combat-but they did not expect for the construct's abilities to advance further without their own assistance.
Far more surprising, even to the arcane emperors, was Moam's ability to summon burning elementals crafted of pure mana.
It was only after Vek'lor witnessed this demonstration of Moam's unbridled power that the source of the construct's seemingly limitless energy was revealed - three tortured dragons: Arygos, Merithra and Caelestrasz, trapped alive within Ahn'Qiraj but not granted the mercy of death as the emperors had believed.
The twins were stunned to learn that their overseer had somehow bound the three dragons, then drained their inherent magical energy and corrupted it for his own use - fortifying not only Moam, but the rest of his twisted creations as well. Truly, it seemed as if there was no limit to the powers of the Ancient One.
The combined forces of the night elves had proven themselves a formidable enemy to the Qiraji, but during the War of the Shifting Sands it was the Bronze Dragonflight that first taught the insect race the meaning of fear.
As the dragons slaughtered wave after wave of silithid, losing few of their own in the process, the Twin Emperors realized their forces were ill-equipped to deal with such powerful creatures of magic.
To combat this shortcoming, Emperor Vek'lor focused his efforts on designing a mechanism capable of fighting the ancient wyrms. These preliminary efforts, however, were wrought with failure.
Aided by whisperings from his ancient master, Vek'lor pressed on and developed a new kind of construct. Though pleased with his progress, even the Qiraji emperor could not guess what dark purpose lay in store for the machines.
Little is known about how the first Obsidian Destroyers were created, but legends speak of Vek'lor himself hammering out the first statue in a molten forge beneath the Ruins of Ahn'Qiraj. To Vek'lor's surprise, his inert creations were quickly imbued with limited sentience by his shadowy overseer, as well as a mysterious power - the ability to drain the magical energies of living creatures. In addition these energies could be stored and then released in a tremendous burst of incendiary mana, making Vek'lor's latest creations among the deadliest in the Qiraji arsenal.
The first Destroyers proved extremely effective; the dragons were not accustomed to fighting enemies that were capable of retaliating from a distance, and they never found an effective way to counter the mana-draining powers of these obsidian statues. And so Anachronos, child of Nozdormu, sought the aid of the remaining dragonflights and history tells us that the Qiraji were sealed behind the Scarab Wall shortly thereafter.
Those dragons who survived the war still dread the return of these magic-stealing monstrosities.
During the War of the Shifting Sands, as the Anubisath constructs crumbled under the Bronze Dragonflight's assault, a single Anubisath did the seemingly impossible - he found a way to fight back.
Ossirian targeted one of the leaders, the massive dragon Grakkarond, and hurled his obsidian sword through the beast's wing. The crippled wyrm descended, crushing the Qiraji as it fell. The dragon mauled Ossirian nearly to death, but the remaining Anubisaths and Qiraji now had a target on the ground to focus on, and they swiftly converged and overwhelmed the noble dragon.
Ossirian's beaten body was dragged back to the Ruins of Ahn'Qiraj following the battle, where he should by all rights have perished. It is whispered that Ossirian found the favor of the malevolent force that reigns over the Qiraji, for in spite of his wounds, the construct survived.
When the mighty Anubisath awoke, he found himself transformed, his strength bolstered and his wounded head bound in the visage of a hawk. Emperor Vek'nilash himself explained what had occurred: Where all others - including the Qiraji General Rajaxx - had failed to find a way to counterattack, the Anubisath had succeeded. For that he received a gift; Ossirian's essence had been bound to several ancient crystals of distant origin, which would grant the Anubisath champion near invulnerability. There was a price for this boon however; Ossirian's life was maintained by the crystals, and if he should ever stray too far from them, the Anubisath would swiftly die.
As others learned of Ossirian's survival, the Anubisaths began to refer to him as the "Unscarred", revering him as a nearly invincible hero.
The legends say that Vek'nilash secretly entrusted Ossirian with the responsibility of maintaining a watch over General Rajaxx, to ensure that the commander would never fail again.
Ossirian serves the Emperors to the best of his ability, despite the frustration of being eternally bound to a single location. The bones of Grakkarond have become a sacred site to the Anubisaths; a testimony to their ability to defeat even the most powerful of enemies.