Zangar encroachment

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The Zangarmarsh in current-day Outland.
The coast of the Zangar Sea.

The Zangar encroachment[1] or Zangar fungal encroachment[2] is the name given to the various fungal swamps found across the shores of Draenor, caused by the Zangar Sea seeking to overtake the land by releasing thousands of spores and slowly growing inland over time.[3] The Zangar sea, and thus the Zangar encroachment, was created from the rotting body of the Sporemound Zang.[4]

One strain of fungus in particular is especially prevalent in Draenor's fungal ecosystem, causing Dr. Hadley Ricard to name it Zangarium Draenormycota. It is highly adaptable, can be found on many of the living organisms throughout Zangar Shore,[5] and is believed to be unique to Draenor.[6] Dr. Ricard also believes that gaining an understanding of the fungal strains in relation to the local ecology will teach a great deal about the various species on Draenor.

Similar to the plant-based Primals, the Zangar encroachment has the ability to infest land-dweling creatures with spores, turning them into mindless fungal slaves, as can be seen in the Crimson Fen. In southern Spires of Arak, the land is being overtaken by the mushrooms that grow underwater, and as a result, strange fungal creatures are sprouting up in the area.[7] Pinchwhistle Point was overwhelmed by the fungus and most of its inhabitants were infested; however, Krixel Pinchwhistle managed to find a cure.[8]

After Draenor shattered into Outland, the Zangar encroachment eventually bloomed into the Zangarmarsh.[1]

Known fungal swamps

Fungal creatures

  • IconSmall SporeWalker.gif Spore walkers are believed to have evolved over time from the simple organisms that dwell within the depths of Zangarmarsh into the more efficient hunting, killing and eating machines that they are today.[11]
    • IconSmall Sporebat.gif Sporebats are a more highly evolved subspecies of spore walker.[11]
  • IconSmall FungalGiant.gif Fungal giants are not actually made of fungus. The fungal growths over their body is actually another organism living in symbiosis with them.[12]
  • IconSmall Sporeling.gif Sporelings are assumed to be podlings infected by the encroachment.

Trivia

Speculation

Questionmark-medium.png
This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.

Even though the encroachments appear to employ the same manner of infecting victims with spores as the Primals (as can be seen in the Crimson Fen and Pinchwhistle Point), the two groups do not appear to be allied with one another, since podlings can be seen fighting fungal giants on the northern coast of Shadowmoon Valley; in fact, rumor has it that podlings are extremely allergic to the spores of fungal giants.[16] However, there is reason to believe that the podlings were eventually transformed into Outland's sporelings, likely due to fungal infection.

Since most Primals appear to have vanished from Draenor after its destruction, with the exception of a few ancients and treants, but plenty of fungal creatures remain in the Zangarmarsh, it is probably safe to assume that the fungi were victorious in the end.

References