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Braham gave in + the Norn are being deceived

Ruadan.9301Ruadan.9301 Member ✭✭✭
edited March 21, 2020 in Lore

Hello everyone, I want to talk story today. If you are invested in the plot, even though we are yet again balls-deep into Elder Dragon business - this is for you. TL; DR at the end.

The recent release is stirring up a lot of questions in regard to Jormag and Primordus, the role of Bangar Ruinbringer in Jormag's schemes, and what Jormag may want to propose to the Commander. These are all valid and interesting questions, and as of the Visions release, I am starting to see the potential for some really juicy speculation. We have this much more to include in our analysis.

However, today I want to talk about the plot of the last episode, Shadow In The Ice. Because there are some big implications there, too.

The story on the surface

The story of last episode essentially seemed to center about Braham fulfilling his "destiny of becoming a true Norn", in the sense of developing the ability to finally shapeshift into his Wolf form. Braham sought out to achieve this by absorbing the essence of three spirits of the Wild, who reluctantly granted him their powers even though they are corrupted by Jormag.

The finale of the episode saw Braham using these powers against Drakkar and ultimately transforming into his Wolf form to fight off Bangar and Ryland and get his friends to safety. Braham achieved his destiny, and by wolf's blessing he can now shapeshift at will. A happy end, for now.

But wasn't there something else?

Why Braham is in trouble (and we are, too)

The finale of the story had a lot of things happening. And some of you might already have noticed this. However, it took me a second playthrough of the story to catch something that may have been the most crucial moment of the entire episode. More crucial than Drakkar's death, more crucial than fighting Rytlock, and more crucial than everything that happened with Ryland and Bangar. Perhaps more crucial than Jormag's conversation with us.

Let me cite this passage of "Voice in the Deep":

The Whisper of Jormag: Braham, you earned all three of the Spirits' blessings. Why then do you still fight me as a norn?

Braham Eirsson: What...what are you talking about?

: Don't listen to it, Braham! Shut it out!

The Whisper of Jormag: It was Wolf, wasn't it? Said you could take their power, maybe even become Wolf yourself. Yet here you are. Just a norn.

Braham Eirsson: Just...just a norn.

Rytlock Brimstone: Commander, you gotta...you gotta kill it! Quick!

The Whisper of Jormag: Your whole life you've tried to become Wolf, but never could. Braham, please—let me give you my power. Let me help you.

Braham Eirsson: Yeah... Help me...

: Braham, concentrate! Braham! kitten!

The Whisper of Jormag: Commander. It's finally time for us to talk.

You realize that the Whisper focuses Braham, taunts him, like he did with Crecia and Rytlock who turned against us as a result. Braham does not turn. But something happened in that moment. And I believe that a deal was made.

I think the writers were being sly here. Because with such a "lore bomb" as the following conversation between Jormag and the Commander was, we were bound to forget the seconds before.

But what if Braham let Jormag in?

I would like you to recount some of Jormag's whispers. The ones that even we, the Commander, heard during Whisper In The Dark.

1: You can't help them.

2: You're stronger with me...

3: I can show you the way...

3: Let me help you...

4: Take it.

And this one, from before the Drakkar world boss fight:

1: Drakkar is only a vessel of my voice. An innocent. Svanir asked for power, and I freely gave it to him.

2: I have never in the history of this world given something to one who did not ask.

This is it. Because Braham did ask him. And in the end, he was able to become the wolf.

But Jormag doesn't make gifts. His corruption is based on an exchange, akin to a devil's pact.

As Cloudseeker says in "Chasing Ghosts":

Cloudseeker: Jormag's truth becomes your truth. If you desire power, Jormag will give it to you. And you give yourself to Jormag.

This is the irony of it. We were warned, and we still did not see it coming. Not even Jhavi, Jora's granddaughter, saw it coming. She rooted for Braham, because of her faithfulness to wolf.

But the faithfulness to the spirits of the wild may be not just Braham's folly, or Jhavi's, but that of the entire Norn race. I am talking of a really huge lore bomb, akin to the moment where we realized that the Sylvari were actually purified Mordrem. So let's talk Norn history, let's talk Jormag, and let's talk Spirits.

Part 1: A Burden

Deep in the icebrood-infested area of Asgeir's Legacy, we found his journal. A journal that should already have shaken Norn society to its very foundations by now. Except it does not, because, as Asgeir himself notes, the Norn can never know what he did, and I suppose the Commander is keeping his secret, for better or for worse.

In short, to those who might not have read A Burden:

Asgeir Dragonrender made a deal with Jormag. About a hundred and fifty years ago, Asgeir went to Jormag to slay him in battle and secure safety for his people. The battle must have been epic in proportion, it lasted for days on end, and in the end, Asgeir was losing. But instead of dealing the killing blow, Jormag offered a deal. They both knew that the Norn race would perish if it were to continue fighting Jormag. They both also knew the Norn would never just "exist at Jormag's mercy".

So Jormag offered Asgeir a tooth. And Asgeir offered his people a lie. He took them south, along with four Spirits of the Wild, and founded Hoelbrak.

The Norn of today exist because Jormag willed it. He could have wiped them out back then. In fact, he probably could have wiped them out until he was weakened by Taimi's machine. It is my belief that the Icebrood have never actually fought the Norn to the fullest of their potential. Both the Norn and the Svanir/ Icebrood are pieces on a game board, perhaps both of them not really knowing it.

Jormag has been giving the Norn a fight they can manage, and he continues to play for time, creating ever more fodder for his army. He doesn't corrupt creatures by force. If he speaks the truth about what he did in history, maybe he never could corrupt creatures by force, he has always had to persuade. So his choice was between a huge pile of dead warriors or an army of willing ones. During those one-hundred and fifty years, the Svanir cult and the Icebrood became the greatest threat to the Norn people. But it is a threat that is meant to occupy. Jormag is keeping the children busy.

Why would Jormag do this if he could have wiped out the Norn? Let's keep in mind what Elder Dragons usually do: Elder Dragons ravage civilizations. They kill and corrupt indiscriminately, consuming magic in the process. When they have consumed their fill, they drop back into slumber. Some of them go mad over time because they have consumed too many different magics. But what does Jormag want?

Part 2: What Jormag wants

Jormag's position is somewhat unique. If we go by the lore, Jormag has never, in his last ~250 years of being awake, actively sought to consume vast quantities of magic; at least this is not something we can prove he did. He has not truly carried the fight to the Norn either - they suffered from a blizzard caused by his awakening, they saw their territories being threatened, and they brought the battle him.

Despite of all of his history with the Norn, Jormag has been a pretty kitten passive Elder Dragon. For all we know, he might be consuming only so much magic as to keep himself sustained - he is in control of his hunger. And from all the Dragons we know, he might be the furthest removed from madness, the exact opposite of Kralkatorrik. He seeks to be in control of the situation at all times.

It is my theory that Jormag does, in fact, tire of the Elder Dragon cycle. He does not want to sleep, as that limits his power and his control over the world. So what is his goal? I am not sure.

The most obvious answer is: Jormag wants to be at the peak of all things. Instead of just co-existing with other Elder Dragons and laying waste to worlds to sate his hunger, he wants to rule them. Not just Tyria, Jormag wants to spread beyond Tyria. He wants to rule the mists, and other worlds, and gods and dragons, and everything there is.

That's why he expands with restraint. That is why he wants a real army, not a heap of mindless thralls. That's why he needs an alliance with Aurene and the Commander.

The only real threat to Jormag is Primordus, because they are each other's weakness. If he manages to win over Aurene and the Commander, and take care of Primordus, that's it. The remaining Dragon would be the Deep Sea Dragon. I won't speculate much about Bubbles, because what do we know, really? But it's then one dragon against two, and their armies. Because if Jormag can convince the Commander to join him, Jormag can likely also persuade the Pact... or at least turn one half and make them slaughter the ones that remain.

But then, for all we know, Bubbles might have the power to make the oceans flood all of Tyria, and is simply exhibiting restraint the way Jormag is. Time will tell us more about the Deep Sea Dragon.

As we now know, Jormag is incredibly interested in having the Commander at his side. He wants this to such an extent, I believe, that he is willing to save the Commander's life. If Braham turned wolf because Jormag granted him this power at the right moment, then Jormag de facto saved the Commander from Bangar.

Bangar is way less important to Jormag than the Commander, but he is an opportunity. Jormag still needs to expand his army, especially while he is asleep and thus more vulnerable. The renegade Charr are basically coming to his lair. If the Dragonspawn and Drakkar could already turn people, then coming to Jormag's lair will spell doom for the renegade army. All Jormag needs to do is to tell them that his power is theirs to command.

Fortunately, the Commander has more experience with Dragons. He is not making the same mistakes that Bangar is making. But Jormag seems to have an argument to win over the Commander, too. And now he also has Braham.

Part 3. Braham, the Norn, and the Spirits of the Wild

Remember that lore twist I talked about earlier? Well, in a way we already knew that the Norn exist at Jormag's mercy. My theory that the battle between Icebrood and Norn is sort of a farce is a mere extension of that theory. But I would like to extend it even further, by claiming this:

ALL spirits already serve Jormag.

Think of it. We know that, like many Norn, Owl Spirit perished by fighting Jormag. The rest, is said, were taken, corrupted. But we know now that Jormag doesn't take, he makes deals.

Jormag's truth becomes your truth. If you desire power, Jormag will give it to you. And you give yourself to Jormag.

Braham claimed the power of the corrupted spirits of Ox, Eagle and Wolverine, and they seemed like they were fighting against Jormag's influence in giving him these powers. But Jormag doesn't force - he persuades. By all rights, the spirits should not merely be corrupted, the should be Jormag's willing champions.

And if we take this further, what is to say that the remaining spirits like Wolf and Raven are not his servants, too?

Because they aided the Norn in coming south? But that's what Jormag wanted.

Because they grant their power to Norn as they go to battle with the Icebrood? But that's what Jormag wants.

The powers of all the spirits are already at Jormag's command. Three more arguments for this:

Svanir's power of becoming the bear was twisted by Jormag, indicating that Jormag commands bear's magic.

Jora's power of becoming the bear was taken, possibly by Jormag, indicating the same thing.
Wolf instructed Braham to take power from corrupted Spirits of the Wild that serve Jormag. This would have to mean that he also serves or works with Jormag.

While in the Raven sanctum, Raven spoke to us, making us think about choices. Right ones, and wrong ones, and how sometimes, both options are bad, but one still must make a choice. This must not necessarily imply that Raven serves Jormag. However, it certainly made the Commander consider his options, which interestingly, if you are playing a human, already has an effect on you after facing the Fraenir in the sanctum:

Braham Eirsson: Commander... About what Jormag said. We're not gonna take it seriously, right?

(Pause)

If human: : Uhm... Right.

Conclusion:

In the end, this is still just a theory. But if I am correct, a lot of exciting things could happen.

  • Jormag can further manipulate Braham to an extent where Braham needs to choose Jormag for good or Jormag will deny him the transformation in crucial moment, meaning someone will die

  • Jormag might twist Braham into a "Nornwolf", essentially Svanir 2.0., since Braham has already taken all the steps that Svanir has taken, which means we will have to fight Braham, and possibly kill him

  • Likewise, since Braham now bears the power of three more corrupted spirits, he might transition between Nornwolf, Norneagle, Nornox, and Nornwolverine, or he might become a horrifying lovecraftian amalgamation of all four (though I think that's a stretch)

  • If we want to avoid killing Braham, Jormag might try and make it a condition that we join him to save Braham's life

  • Should any other Norn decide to help us, for example Jhavi, Jormag can deny them the powers of becoming their spirits, as he once denied Jora, long ago, and might still deny others without them knowing it (they essentially just keep believing the Spirits don't deem them worthy)

TL; DR as promised:

  • Jormag has begun to make Braham into Svanir 2.0., and the evidence is in the story

  • Jormag wants to break the Elder Dragon cycle so he can stop destroying civilizations that war with him and instead rule everything there is, for which he needs the Commander and Aurene

  • Jormag commands all the Spirits of the Wild and can deny the Norn their shapeshifting

Comments

  • I do agree that Braham getting those powers of the spirits was suspiciously easy. However Braham has already "betrayed" The Commander (I don't agree with the general community assessment of him during S3 but it is what it is) so I have my doubts that Anet will have him go that route again. I do think he's going to get written out since his current arc seems to point towards it, but I don't think him falling to Jormag is going to be how they do it.

    That having been said, I'm willing to place money on the idea that Anet will make it look like he fell. Maybe with Taimi and Rox making a comeback to snap him out of it? As cliche as it is I'm a bit of a sucker for THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP. I guess it depends if Anet's writers are too.

    I also agree that Jormag is on the up and up about wanting to work with Aurene. The world has changed and the smart ED will change with it. Especially since The Commander has three elder dragons, one human god, several lieutenants, and literally thousands of minions (and technically, one immortal lich) on their kill score card. They're just really bad at asking nicely because they've spent tens of thousands of years taking.

    TBH, if they are going to have anyone in our krewe fall I think it'll be Rytlock. He's got a lot on his plate and he has been going off the rails pretty hard. He literally did betray and try to kill The Commander last episode. I suppose there is Jory but she recognized that she was compromised immediately and stayed behind at the keep.

    Anyway, good theorizing.

    ...

  • Thornwolf.9721Thornwolf.9721 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Ruadan.9301 said:
    Hello everyone, I want to talk story today. If you are invested in the plot, even though we are yet again balls-deep into Elder Dragon business - this is for you. TL; DR at the end.

    The recent release is stirring up a lot of questions in regard to Jormag and Primordus, the role of Bangar Ruinbringer in Jormag's schemes, and what Jormag may want to propose to the Commander. These are all valid and interesting questions, and as of the Visions release, I am starting to see the potential for some really juicy speculation. We have this much more to include in our analysis.

    However, today I want to talk about the plot of the last episode, Shadow In The Ice. Because there are some big implications there, too.

    The story on the surface

    The story of last episode essentially seemed to center about Braham fulfilling his "destiny of becoming a true Norn", in the sense of developing the ability to finally shapeshift into his Wolf form. Braham sought out to achieve this by absorbing the essence of three spirits of the Wild, who reluctantly granted him their powers even though they are corrupted by Jormag.

    The finale of the episode saw Braham using these powers against Drakkar and ultimately transforming into his Wolf form to fight off Bangar and Ryland and get his friends to safety. Braham achieved his destiny, and by wolf's blessing he can now shapeshift at will. A happy end, for now.

    But wasn't there something else?

    Why Braham is in trouble (and we are, too)

    The finale of the story had a lot of things happening. And some of you might already have noticed this. However, it took me a second playthrough of the story to catch something that may have been the most crucial moment of the entire episode. More crucial than Drakkar's death, more crucial than fighting Rytlock, and more crucial than everything that happened with Ryland and Bangar. Perhaps more crucial than Jormag's conversation with us.

    Let me cite this passage of "Voice in the Deep":

    The Whisper of Jormag: Braham, you earned all three of the Spirits' blessings. Why then do you still fight me as a norn?

    Braham Eirsson: What...what are you talking about?

    : Don't listen to it, Braham! Shut it out!

    The Whisper of Jormag: It was Wolf, wasn't it? Said you could take their power, maybe even become Wolf yourself. Yet here you are. Just a norn.

    Braham Eirsson: Just...just a norn.

    Rytlock Brimstone: Commander, you gotta...you gotta kill it! Quick!

    The Whisper of Jormag: Your whole life you've tried to become Wolf, but never could. Braham, please—let me give you my power. Let me help you.

    Braham Eirsson: Yeah... Help me...

    : Braham, concentrate! Braham! kitten!

    The Whisper of Jormag: Commander. It's finally time for us to talk.

    You realize that the Whisper focuses Braham, taunts him, like he did with Crecia and Rytlock who turned against us as a result. Braham does not turn. But something happened in that moment. And I believe that a deal was made.

    I think the writers were being sly here. Because with such a "lore bomb" as the following conversation between Jormag and the Commander was, we were bound to forget the seconds before.

    But what if Braham let Jormag in?

    I would like you to recount some of Jormag's whispers. The ones that even we, the Commander, heard during Whisper In The Dark.

    1: You can't help them.

    2: You're stronger with me...

    3: I can show you the way...

    3: Let me help you...

    4: Take it.

    And this one, from before the Drakkar world boss fight:

    1: Drakkar is only a vessel of my voice. An innocent. Svanir asked for power, and I freely gave it to him.

    2: I have never in the history of this world given something to one who did not ask.

    This is it. Because Braham did ask him. And in the end, he was able to become the wolf.

    But Jormag doesn't make gifts. His corruption is based on an exchange, akin to a devil's pact.

    As Cloudseeker says in "Chasing Ghosts":

    Cloudseeker: Jormag's truth becomes your truth. If you desire power, Jormag will give it to you. And you give yourself to Jormag.

    This is the irony of it. We were warned, and we still did not see it coming. Not even Jhavi, Jora's granddaughter, saw it coming. She rooted for Braham, because of her faithfulness to wolf.

    But the faithfulness to the spirits of the wild may be not just Braham's folly, or Jhavi's, but that of the entire Norn race. I am talking of a really huge lore bomb, akin to the moment where we realized that the Sylvari were actually purified Mordrem. So let's talk Norn history, let's talk Jormag, and let's talk Spirits.

    Part 1: A Burden

    Deep in the icebrood-infested area of Asgeir's Legacy, we found his journal. A journal that should already have shaken Norn society to its very foundations by now. Except it does not, because, as Asgeir himself notes, the Norn can never know what he did, and I suppose the Commander is keeping his secret, for better or for worse.

    In short, to those who might not have read A Burden:

    Asgeir Dragonrender made a deal with Jormag. About a hundred and fifty years ago, Asgeir went to Jormag to slay him in battle and secure safety for his people. The battle must have been epic in proportion, it lasted for days on end, and in the end, Asgeir was losing. But instead of dealing the killing blow, Jormag offered a deal. They both knew that the Norn race would perish if it were to continue fighting Jormag. They both also knew the Norn would never just "exist at Jormag's mercy".

    So Jormag offered Asgeir a tooth. And Asgeir offered his people a lie. He took them south, along with four Spirits of the Wild, and founded Hoelbrak.

    The Norn of today exist because Jormag willed it. He could have wiped them out back then. In fact, he probably could have wiped them out until he was weakened by Taimi's machine. It is my belief that the Icebrood have never actually fought the Norn to the fullest of their potential. Both the Norn and the Svanir/ Icebrood are pieces on a game board, perhaps both of them not really knowing it.

    Jormag has been giving the Norn a fight they can manage, and he continues to play for time, creating ever more fodder for his army. He doesn't corrupt creatures by force. If he speaks the truth about what he did in history, maybe he never could corrupt creatures by force, he has always had to persuade. So his choice was between a huge pile of dead warriors or an army of willing ones. During those one-hundred and fifty years, the Svanir cult and the Icebrood became the greatest threat to the Norn people. But it is a threat that is meant to occupy. Jormag is keeping the children busy.

    Why would Jormag do this if he could have wiped out the Norn? Let's keep in mind what Elder Dragons usually do: Elder Dragons ravage civilizations. They kill and corrupt indiscriminately, consuming magic in the process. When they have consumed their fill, they drop back into slumber. Some of them go mad over time because they have consumed too many different magics. But what does Jormag want?

    Part 2: What Jormag wants

    Jormag's position is somewhat unique. If we go by the lore, Jormag has never, in his last ~250 years of being awake, actively sought to consume vast quantities of magic; at least this is not something we can prove he did. He has not truly carried the fight to the Norn either - they suffered from a blizzard caused by his awakening, they saw their territories being threatened, and they brought the battle him.

    Despite of all of his history with the Norn, Jormag has been a pretty kitten passive Elder Dragon. For all we know, he might be consuming only so much magic as to keep himself sustained - he is in control of his hunger. And from all the Dragons we know, he might be the furthest removed from madness, the exact opposite of Kralkatorrik. He seeks to be in control of the situation at all times.

    It is my theory that Jormag does, in fact, tire of the Elder Dragon cycle. He does not want to sleep, as that limits his power and his control over the world. So what is his goal? I am not sure.

    The most obvious answer is: Jormag wants to be at the peak of all things. Instead of just co-existing with other Elder Dragons and laying waste to worlds to sate his hunger, he wants to rule them. Not just Tyria, Jormag wants to spread beyond Tyria. He wants to rule the mists, and other worlds, and gods and dragons, and everything there is.

    That's why he expands with restraint. That is why he wants a real army, not a heap of mindless thralls. That's why he needs an alliance with Aurene and the Commander.

    The only real threat to Jormag is Primordus, because they are each other's weakness. If he manages to win over Aurene and the Commander, and take care of Primordus, that's it. The remaining Dragon would be the Deep Sea Dragon. I won't speculate much about Bubbles, because what do we know, really? But it's then one dragon against two, and their armies. Because if Jormag can convince the Commander to join him, Jormag can likely also persuade the Pact... or at least turn one half and make them slaughter the ones that remain.

    But then, for all we know, Bubbles might have the power to make the oceans flood all of Tyria, and is simply exhibiting restraint the way Jormag is. Time will tell us more about the Deep Sea Dragon.

    As we now know, Jormag is incredibly interested in having the Commander at his side. He wants this to such an extent, I believe, that he is willing to save the Commander's life. If Braham turned wolf because Jormag granted him this power at the right moment, then Jormag de facto saved the Commander from Bangar.

    Bangar is way less important to Jormag than the Commander, but he is an opportunity. Jormag still needs to expand his army, especially while he is asleep and thus more vulnerable. The renegade Charr are basically coming to his lair. If the Dragonspawn and Drakkar could already turn people, then coming to Jormag's lair will spell doom for the renegade army. All Jormag needs to do is to tell them that his power is theirs to command.

    Fortunately, the Commander has more experience with Dragons. He is not making the same mistakes that Bangar is making. But Jormag seems to have an argument to win over the Commander, too. And now he also has Braham.

    Part 3. Braham, the Norn, and the Spirits of the Wild

    Remember that lore twist I talked about earlier? Well, in a way we already knew that the Norn exist at Jormag's mercy. My theory that the battle between Icebrood and Norn is sort of a farce is a mere extension of that theory. But I would like to extend it even further, by claiming this:

    ALL spirits already serve Jormag.

    Think of it. We know that, like many Norn, Owl Spirit perished by fighting Jormag. The rest, is said, were taken, corrupted. But we know now that Jormag doesn't take, he makes deals.

    Jormag's truth becomes your truth. If you desire power, Jormag will give it to you. And you give yourself to Jormag.

    Braham claimed the power of the corrupted spirits of Ox, Eagle and Wolverine, and they seemed like they were fighting against Jormag's influence in giving him these powers. But Jormag doesn't force - he persuades. By all rights, the spirits should not merely be corrupted, the should be Jormag's willing champions.

    And if we take this further, what is to say that the remaining spirits like Wolf and Raven are not his servants, too?

    Because they aided the Norn in coming south? But that's what Jormag wanted.

    Because they grant their power to Norn as they go to battle with the Icebrood? But that's what Jormag wants.

    The powers of all the spirits are already at Jormag's command. Three more arguments for this:

    Svanir's power of becoming the bear was twisted by Jormag, indicating that Jormag commands bear's magic.

    Jora's power of becoming the bear was taken, possibly by Jormag, indicating the same thing.
    Wolf instructed Braham to take power from corrupted Spirits of the Wild that serve Jormag. This would have to mean that he also serves or works with Jormag.

    While in the Raven sanctum, Raven spoke to us, making us think about choices. Right ones, and wrong ones, and how sometimes, both options are bad, but one still must make a choice. This must not necessarily imply that Raven serves Jormag. However, it certainly made the Commander consider his options, which interestingly, if you are playing a human, already has an effect on you after facing the Fraenir in the sanctum:

    Braham Eirsson: Commander... About what Jormag said. We're not gonna take it seriously, right?

    (Pause)

    If human: : Uhm... Right.

    Conclusion:

    In the end, this is still just a theory. But if I am correct, a lot of exciting things could happen.

    • Jormag can further manipulate Braham to an extent where Braham needs to choose Jormag for good or Jormag will deny him the transformation in crucial moment, meaning someone will die

    • Jormag might twist Braham into a "Nornwolf", essentially Svanir 2.0., since Braham has already taken all the steps that Svanir has taken, which means we will have to fight Braham, and possibly kill him

    • Likewise, since Braham now bears the power of three more corrupted spirits, he might transition between Nornwolf, Norneagle, Nornox, and Nornwolverine, or he might become a horrifying lovecraftian amalgamation of all four (though I think that's a stretch)

    • If we want to avoid killing Braham, Jormag might try and make it a condition that we join him to save Braham's life

    • Should any other Norn decide to help us, for example Jhavi, Jormag can deny them the powers of becoming their spirits, as he once denied Jora, long ago, and might still deny others without them knowing it (they essentially just keep believing the Spirits don't deem them worthy)

    TL; DR as promised:

    • Jormag has begun to make Braham into Svanir 2.0., and the evidence is in the story

    • Jormag wants to break the Elder Dragon cycle so he can stop destroying civilizations that war with him and instead rule everything there is, for which he needs the Commander and Aurene

    • Jormag commands all the Spirits of the Wild and can deny the Norn their shapeshifting

    If this is the case then when jormag is dealt with the norn loose their abilities and uniqueness, depth and everything. I do not want this to happen; I want my shapeshifting BACK and I want to feel like the norn from guild wars 1. Not this whatever it is... But Im sure you're correct and the norn are going to get shafted into being literally "Big humans" in the lore as well as the game.

  • Valmir.4590Valmir.4590 Member ✭✭

    That's a very interesting theorycrafting, but I think you're making a slight mistake concerning the Spirits of the Wild.

    1: The Nature of the Spirits

    Unlike other beings, Jormag doesn't seem able to corrupt the Spirits of the Wild into icebroods. They can convince them to turn to their side and submit, but the SPirits are still their own individual entities, with their own powers and rules. In a lot of animistic or chamanistic cultures, spirits have banes and bans and some form of obligations when dealing with mortals, and I think that's the case here.

    While the corrupted Spirits submitted themselves to Jormag, they are still bound by the rules of their nature. A prophecy is clearly binding enough that they cannot refuse to lend their help if the Chosen undergoes the right rites and ceremonies. The corrupted Spirits are, after all, quite contemptuous of Braham, dismissing him each in their own way. But he gives them answers which are sufficient to work around the Word of Jormag because they aren't bound to their Will.

    I suspect that if Jormag can corrupt but not turn entirely the Spirits, it's because they too are part of the All, in their own way. They are apparently lesser than Gods or Elder Dragons in their power, but they also seems to be deeply tuned to the natural world, in ways that the others aren't. We have only ever met the Spirits of beasts because they are willing to help the Norn and be worshipped by them, but there is after all Spirits of Mountains, of Jungle, of Fire... I would very much like to meet the Spirit of Mountains, if it does reside in the Shiverpeaks, for instance, for he must possess vast knowledge of the past.

    2: Why the Spirits agreed to lead the Norn south

    From what I can gather, having been never lucky enough to be on a map where the giant icebrood is defeated, the Spirits where with Asgeir when he made his deal with Jormag. They could have refused to follow up with it, since they weren't bound by it, but I suspect that the Death of Owl changed things. The Spirits of the Wild must have endured countless cycles of the Elder Dragons, but I suspect that it was the first time that one of them - Owl - died fighting them. Why? Because, just like the Spirits change the Norns (who have changed significantly in the 250 years between EotN and GW2), they too changed the Spirits, by giving them followers and students but also source of inspiration and legends.

    If we look at the other great races living in the Shiverpeaks who could have made a pact with the Spirits in ancient time, we see that they don't seem to be so inclined. The Dwarves were the creation of the Great Dwarf (is he truly an entity, or some attempt to create a "dwarvish" Elder Dragon by the way? The descriptions of the Great Dwarf are quite strange on the Gw 1 and 2 wiki) and not at all interested by what the Spirits are. The Jotuns were similarly scholars and astromancer, wielders of powerful magic. But since their pride was their downfall, I doubt that they cared about the Spirits, they wouldn't have liked to barter with them, which seems to be the rule for the Norn's interactions with them.

    Finally, we have the Kodans, whose whole story is that they consider themselves to be the Chosen People of "God" (Koda, in this case) existing to judge all, mortals and Spirits alike. They are not interested at all in the Spirits of the Wild - in fact, they consider the Norns to be on the brink of the ultimate spiritual devolution. Their own myths regarding the Norns obviously play a part, but I think that it's also because they worship the Spirits instead of judging them which rub the Kodans the wrong way. And if you look at those three races, Dwarves, Jotuns and Kodans, you'll notice a difference between them and the Norns.

    All three of them are dead-lock set in their ways. The Jotuns fell, hard, obviously but even today, they still retain the behavior which reduced them from sorcerer-kings to overgrown troglodytes. The Kodans are certain of their ways and to change them is akin to losing everything. And the Dwarves...well, they became the Great Dwarf again - or turned themselves into Primordius for some of them. But the Norns are different. The tenet of their society is to become a legend to inspire future generations , so they can and will change with the rise and fall of legendary individuals.

    I think that the Spirits covered Asgeir's lie because of it. Because they know that the Norn can change, and that if they can, then they can force others to change. 250 years ago, no Norn would have joined an army, especially as a simple soldier. Nowaday, they do. 250 years ago, Jhavi would have left the Vigil the second Almorra died because she would have been convinced by Almorra to join, but wouldn't have an attachment to the organization. She stays and fight and is a Vigil at heart.

    I think that the Spirits of the Wild want the endless cycle of destruction and creation to end, to have something more sustainable for all put in its place. And perhaps that Jormag truly wants the same thing.

    Time will tell.

  • Stephen.6312Stephen.6312 Member ✭✭✭

    @Ruadan.9301 said:
    Hello everyone, I want to talk story today. If you are invested in the plot, even though we are yet again balls-deep into Elder Dragon business - this is for you. TL; DR at the end.

    The recent release is stirring up a lot of questions in regard to Jormag and Primordus, the role of Bangar Ruinbringer in Jormag's schemes, and what Jormag may want to propose to the Commander. These are all valid and interesting questions, and as of the Visions release, I am starting to see the potential for some really juicy speculation. We have this much more to include in our analysis.

    However, today I want to talk about the plot of the last episode, Shadow In The Ice. Because there are some big implications there, too.

    The story on the surface

    The story of last episode essentially seemed to center about Braham fulfilling his "destiny of becoming a true Norn", in the sense of developing the ability to finally shapeshift into his Wolf form. Braham sought out to achieve this by absorbing the essence of three spirits of the Wild, who reluctantly granted him their powers even though they are corrupted by Jormag.

    The finale of the episode saw Braham using these powers against Drakkar and ultimately transforming into his Wolf form to fight off Bangar and Ryland and get his friends to safety. Braham achieved his destiny, and by wolf's blessing he can now shapeshift at will. A happy end, for now.

    But wasn't there something else?

    Why Braham is in trouble (and we are, too)

    The finale of the story had a lot of things happening. And some of you might already have noticed this. However, it took me a second playthrough of the story to catch something that may have been the most crucial moment of the entire episode. More crucial than Drakkar's death, more crucial than fighting Rytlock, and more crucial than everything that happened with Ryland and Bangar. Perhaps more crucial than Jormag's conversation with us.

    Let me cite this passage of "Voice in the Deep":

    The Whisper of Jormag: Braham, you earned all three of the Spirits' blessings. Why then do you still fight me as a norn?

    Braham Eirsson: What...what are you talking about?

    : Don't listen to it, Braham! Shut it out!

    The Whisper of Jormag: It was Wolf, wasn't it? Said you could take their power, maybe even become Wolf yourself. Yet here you are. Just a norn.

    Braham Eirsson: Just...just a norn.

    Rytlock Brimstone: Commander, you gotta...you gotta kill it! Quick!

    The Whisper of Jormag: Your whole life you've tried to become Wolf, but never could. Braham, please—let me give you my power. Let me help you.

    Braham Eirsson: Yeah... Help me...

    : Braham, concentrate! Braham! kitten!

    The Whisper of Jormag: Commander. It's finally time for us to talk.

    You realize that the Whisper focuses Braham, taunts him, like he did with Crecia and Rytlock who turned against us as a result. Braham does not turn. But something happened in that moment. And I believe that a deal was made.

    I think the writers were being sly here. Because with such a "lore bomb" as the following conversation between Jormag and the Commander was, we were bound to forget the seconds before.

    But what if Braham let Jormag in?

    I would like you to recount some of Jormag's whispers. The ones that even we, the Commander, heard during Whisper In The Dark.

    1: You can't help them.

    2: You're stronger with me...

    3: I can show you the way...

    3: Let me help you...

    4: Take it.

    And this one, from before the Drakkar world boss fight:

    1: Drakkar is only a vessel of my voice. An innocent. Svanir asked for power, and I freely gave it to him.

    2: I have never in the history of this world given something to one who did not ask.

    This is it. Because Braham did ask him. And in the end, he was able to become the wolf.

    But Jormag doesn't make gifts. His corruption is based on an exchange, akin to a devil's pact.

    As Cloudseeker says in "Chasing Ghosts":

    Cloudseeker: Jormag's truth becomes your truth. If you desire power, Jormag will give it to you. And you give yourself to Jormag.

    This is the irony of it. We were warned, and we still did not see it coming. Not even Jhavi, Jora's granddaughter, saw it coming. She rooted for Braham, because of her faithfulness to wolf.

    But the faithfulness to the spirits of the wild may be not just Braham's folly, or Jhavi's, but that of the entire Norn race. I am talking of a really huge lore bomb, akin to the moment where we realized that the Sylvari were actually purified Mordrem. So let's talk Norn history, let's talk Jormag, and let's talk Spirits.

    Part 1: A Burden

    Deep in the icebrood-infested area of Asgeir's Legacy, we found his journal. A journal that should already have shaken Norn society to its very foundations by now. Except it does not, because, as Asgeir himself notes, the Norn can never know what he did, and I suppose the Commander is keeping his secret, for better or for worse.

    In short, to those who might not have read A Burden:

    Asgeir Dragonrender made a deal with Jormag. About a hundred and fifty years ago, Asgeir went to Jormag to slay him in battle and secure safety for his people. The battle must have been epic in proportion, it lasted for days on end, and in the end, Asgeir was losing. But instead of dealing the killing blow, Jormag offered a deal. They both knew that the Norn race would perish if it were to continue fighting Jormag. They both also knew the Norn would never just "exist at Jormag's mercy".

    So Jormag offered Asgeir a tooth. And Asgeir offered his people a lie. He took them south, along with four Spirits of the Wild, and founded Hoelbrak.

    The Norn of today exist because Jormag willed it. He could have wiped them out back then. In fact, he probably could have wiped them out until he was weakened by Taimi's machine. It is my belief that the Icebrood have never actually fought the Norn to the fullest of their potential. Both the Norn and the Svanir/ Icebrood are pieces on a game board, perhaps both of them not really knowing it.

    Jormag has been giving the Norn a fight they can manage, and he continues to play for time, creating ever more fodder for his army. He doesn't corrupt creatures by force. If he speaks the truth about what he did in history, maybe he never could corrupt creatures by force, he has always had to persuade. So his choice was between a huge pile of dead warriors or an army of willing ones. During those one-hundred and fifty years, the Svanir cult and the Icebrood became the greatest threat to the Norn people. But it is a threat that is meant to occupy. Jormag is keeping the children busy.

    Why would Jormag do this if he could have wiped out the Norn? Let's keep in mind what Elder Dragons usually do: Elder Dragons ravage civilizations. They kill and corrupt indiscriminately, consuming magic in the process. When they have consumed their fill, they drop back into slumber. Some of them go mad over time because they have consumed too many different magics. But what does Jormag want?

    Part 2: What Jormag wants

    Jormag's position is somewhat unique. If we go by the lore, Jormag has never, in his last ~250 years of being awake, actively sought to consume vast quantities of magic; at least this is not something we can prove he did. He has not truly carried the fight to the Norn either - they suffered from a blizzard caused by his awakening, they saw their territories being threatened, and they brought the battle him.

    Despite of all of his history with the Norn, Jormag has been a pretty kitten passive Elder Dragon. For all we know, he might be consuming only so much magic as to keep himself sustained - he is in control of his hunger. And from all the Dragons we know, he might be the furthest removed from madness, the exact opposite of Kralkatorrik. He seeks to be in control of the situation at all times.

    It is my theory that Jormag does, in fact, tire of the Elder Dragon cycle. He does not want to sleep, as that limits his power and his control over the world. So what is his goal? I am not sure.

    The most obvious answer is: Jormag wants to be at the peak of all things. Instead of just co-existing with other Elder Dragons and laying waste to worlds to sate his hunger, he wants to rule them. Not just Tyria, Jormag wants to spread beyond Tyria. He wants to rule the mists, and other worlds, and gods and dragons, and everything there is.

    That's why he expands with restraint. That is why he wants a real army, not a heap of mindless thralls. That's why he needs an alliance with Aurene and the Commander.

    The only real threat to Jormag is Primordus, because they are each other's weakness. If he manages to win over Aurene and the Commander, and take care of Primordus, that's it. The remaining Dragon would be the Deep Sea Dragon. I won't speculate much about Bubbles, because what do we know, really? But it's then one dragon against two, and their armies. Because if Jormag can convince the Commander to join him, Jormag can likely also persuade the Pact... or at least turn one half and make them slaughter the ones that remain.

    But then, for all we know, Bubbles might have the power to make the oceans flood all of Tyria, and is simply exhibiting restraint the way Jormag is. Time will tell us more about the Deep Sea Dragon.

    As we now know, Jormag is incredibly interested in having the Commander at his side. He wants this to such an extent, I believe, that he is willing to save the Commander's life. If Braham turned wolf because Jormag granted him this power at the right moment, then Jormag de facto saved the Commander from Bangar.

    Bangar is way less important to Jormag than the Commander, but he is an opportunity. Jormag still needs to expand his army, especially while he is asleep and thus more vulnerable. The renegade Charr are basically coming to his lair. If the Dragonspawn and Drakkar could already turn people, then coming to Jormag's lair will spell doom for the renegade army. All Jormag needs to do is to tell them that his power is theirs to command.

    Fortunately, the Commander has more experience with Dragons. He is not making the same mistakes that Bangar is making. But Jormag seems to have an argument to win over the Commander, too. And now he also has Braham.

    Part 3. Braham, the Norn, and the Spirits of the Wild

    Remember that lore twist I talked about earlier? Well, in a way we already knew that the Norn exist at Jormag's mercy. My theory that the battle between Icebrood and Norn is sort of a farce is a mere extension of that theory. But I would like to extend it even further, by claiming this:

    ALL spirits already serve Jormag.

    Think of it. We know that, like many Norn, Owl Spirit perished by fighting Jormag. The rest, is said, were taken, corrupted. But we know now that Jormag doesn't take, he makes deals.

    Jormag's truth becomes your truth. If you desire power, Jormag will give it to you. And you give yourself to Jormag.

    Braham claimed the power of the corrupted spirits of Ox, Eagle and Wolverine, and they seemed like they were fighting against Jormag's influence in giving him these powers. But Jormag doesn't force - he persuades. By all rights, the spirits should not merely be corrupted, the should be Jormag's willing champions.

    And if we take this further, what is to say that the remaining spirits like Wolf and Raven are not his servants, too?

    Because they aided the Norn in coming south? But that's what Jormag wanted.

    Because they grant their power to Norn as they go to battle with the Icebrood? But that's what Jormag wants.

    The powers of all the spirits are already at Jormag's command. Three more arguments for this:

    Svanir's power of becoming the bear was twisted by Jormag, indicating that Jormag commands bear's magic.

    Jora's power of becoming the bear was taken, possibly by Jormag, indicating the same thing.
    Wolf instructed Braham to take power from corrupted Spirits of the Wild that serve Jormag. This would have to mean that he also serves or works with Jormag.

    While in the Raven sanctum, Raven spoke to us, making us think about choices. Right ones, and wrong ones, and how sometimes, both options are bad, but one still must make a choice. This must not necessarily imply that Raven serves Jormag. However, it certainly made the Commander consider his options, which interestingly, if you are playing a human, already has an effect on you after facing the Fraenir in the sanctum:

    Braham Eirsson: Commander... About what Jormag said. We're not gonna take it seriously, right?

    (Pause)

    If human: : Uhm... Right.

    Conclusion:

    In the end, this is still just a theory. But if I am correct, a lot of exciting things could happen.

    • Jormag can further manipulate Braham to an extent where Braham needs to choose Jormag for good or Jormag will deny him the transformation in crucial moment, meaning someone will die

    • Jormag might twist Braham into a "Nornwolf", essentially Svanir 2.0., since Braham has already taken all the steps that Svanir has taken, which means we will have to fight Braham, and possibly kill him

    • Likewise, since Braham now bears the power of three more corrupted spirits, he might transition between Nornwolf, Norneagle, Nornox, and Nornwolverine, or he might become a horrifying lovecraftian amalgamation of all four (though I think that's a stretch)

    • If we want to avoid killing Braham, Jormag might try and make it a condition that we join him to save Braham's life

    • Should any other Norn decide to help us, for example Jhavi, Jormag can deny them the powers of becoming their spirits, as he once denied Jora, long ago, and might still deny others without them knowing it (they essentially just keep believing the Spirits don't deem them worthy)

    TL; DR as promised:

    • Jormag has begun to make Braham into Svanir 2.0., and the evidence is in the story

    • Jormag wants to break the Elder Dragon cycle so he can stop destroying civilizations that war with him and instead rule everything there is, for which he needs the Commander and Aurene

    • Jormag commands all the Spirits of the Wild and can deny the Norn their shapeshifting

    Thank you for taking the time to put this together. I tend to agree that Jormag may have enabled Braham's transformation into Wolf.

    My theory is that Jormag can help souls resolve inner conflicts (i. e. forms of torment) that otherwise prevent them from reaching their potential, whatever that may be.

    The three Spirits that lent Braham their power looked like they were ablaze. This cannot be a coincidence. What better way to fight Jormag than with fire? If you ask me, Jormag doesn't want to fight Primordus - it wants to appeal to Primordus to help it fight off the threat of Bubbles.

    Now I've always felt that the Elder Dragons are a hive mind. But maybe Bubbles is like the unconscious part of that mind? Maybe the meeting of the Terrestrial Dragons and the Aquatic Dragon reconciles this mind, yet three of the Terrestrial Dragons are currently out of the picture. In the past, the meeting of the Elders has always been presided over by the Terrestrial Dragons. But now the balance of power has shifted and the remaining Terrestrials may not be able to dictate the terms of how the mind of the Elders is arranged. Jormy and Prim may fear the rule of their unconscious, which is probably as full of trauma as that of the minds of mortals.

    Anyhow, thumbs up mate. Keep up the good work.

  • Jimbru.6014Jimbru.6014 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Jormag's energy opposes that of Primordus. We learned that a long time ago. Primordus, from what (not so) little we've seen of him to guess, is even bigger and potentially more powerful than Kralk. "Forging Steel" just gave us our first modern hint of Primordus' presence (or at least his minions and related energy) in the far north since the days when Primordus was sleeping by the Central Transfer Chamber, below Earthshake Basin in Frostgorge Sound (Primordus was how Earthshake got its name). With their energies in direct opposition, it's reasonable to assume Jormag and Primordus aren't on friendly terms, and their proximity to each other could affect them adversely. Primordus could be the "horror to come" that Jormag wants to fight...or just one of the horrors.

    With that thought about Primordus' size, it's also important to note that we've not actually seen Jormag in game yet, beyond a few vague scenes that don't really give us much to go on. If the size of Jormag's tooth is anything to judge by, we're gonna need a bigger boat...

  • Felipe.1807Felipe.1807 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Valmir.4590 said:
    That's a very interesting theorycrafting, but I think you're making a slight mistake concerning the Spirits of the Wild.

    1: The Nature of the Spirits

    Unlike other beings, Jormag doesn't seem able to corrupt the Spirits of the Wild into icebroods. They can convince them to turn to their side and submit, but the SPirits are still their own individual entities, with their own powers and rules. In a lot of animistic or chamanistic cultures, spirits have banes and bans and some form of obligations when dealing with mortals, and I think that's the case here.

    While the corrupted Spirits submitted themselves to Jormag, they are still bound by the rules of their nature. A prophecy is clearly binding enough that they cannot refuse to lend their help if the Chosen undergoes the right rites and ceremonies. The corrupted Spirits are, after all, quite contemptuous of Braham, dismissing him each in their own way. But he gives them answers which are sufficient to work around the Word of Jormag because they aren't bound to their Will.

    I suspect that if Jormag can corrupt but not turn entirely the Spirits, it's because they too are part of the All, in their own way. They are apparently lesser than Gods or Elder Dragons in their power, but they also seems to be deeply tuned to the natural world, in ways that the others aren't. We have only ever met the Spirits of beasts because they are willing to help the Norn and be worshipped by them, but there is after all Spirits of Mountains, of Jungle, of Fire... I would very much like to meet the Spirit of Mountains, if it does reside in the Shiverpeaks, for instance, for he must possess vast knowledge of the past.

    2: Why the Spirits agreed to lead the Norn south

    From what I can gather, having been never lucky enough to be on a map where the giant icebrood is defeated, the Spirits where with Asgeir when he made his deal with Jormag. They could have refused to follow up with it, since they weren't bound by it, but I suspect that the Death of Owl changed things. The Spirits of the Wild must have endured countless cycles of the Elder Dragons, but I suspect that it was the first time that one of them - Owl - died fighting them. Why? Because, just like the Spirits change the Norns (who have changed significantly in the 250 years between EotN and GW2), they too changed the Spirits, by giving them followers and students but also source of inspiration and legends.

    If we look at the other great races living in the Shiverpeaks who could have made a pact with the Spirits in ancient time, we see that they don't seem to be so inclined. The Dwarves were the creation of the Great Dwarf (is he truly an entity, or some attempt to create a "dwarvish" Elder Dragon by the way? The descriptions of the Great Dwarf are quite strange on the Gw 1 and 2 wiki) and not at all interested by what the Spirits are. The Jotuns were similarly scholars and astromancer, wielders of powerful magic. But since their pride was their downfall, I doubt that they cared about the Spirits, they wouldn't have liked to barter with them, which seems to be the rule for the Norn's interactions with them.

    Finally, we have the Kodans, whose whole story is that they consider themselves to be the Chosen People of "God" (Koda, in this case) existing to judge all, mortals and Spirits alike. They are not interested at all in the Spirits of the Wild - in fact, they consider the Norns to be on the brink of the ultimate spiritual devolution. Their own myths regarding the Norns obviously play a part, but I think that it's also because they worship the Spirits instead of judging them which rub the Kodans the wrong way. And if you look at those three races, Dwarves, Jotuns and Kodans, you'll notice a difference between them and the Norns.

    All three of them are dead-lock set in their ways. The Jotuns fell, hard, obviously but even today, they still retain the behavior which reduced them from sorcerer-kings to overgrown troglodytes. The Kodans are certain of their ways and to change them is akin to losing everything. And the Dwarves...well, they became the Great Dwarf again - or turned themselves into Primordius for some of them. But the Norns are different. The tenet of their society is to become a legend to inspire future generations , so they can and will change with the rise and fall of legendary individuals.

    I think that the Spirits covered Asgeir's lie because of it. Because they know that the Norn can change, and that if they can, then they can force others to change. 250 years ago, no Norn would have joined an army, especially as a simple soldier. Nowaday, they do. 250 years ago, Jhavi would have left the Vigil the second Almorra died because she would have been convinced by Almorra to join, but wouldn't have an attachment to the organization. She stays and fight and is a Vigil at heart.

    I think that the Spirits of the Wild want the endless cycle of destruction and creation to end, to have something more sustainable for all put in its place. And perhaps that Jormag truly wants the same thing.

    Time will tell.

    "From what I can gather, having been never lucky enough to be on a map where the giant icebrood is defeated, the Spirits where with Asgeir when he made his deal with Jormag. They could have refused to follow up with it, since they weren't bound by it, but I suspect that the Death of Owl changed things."

    From what I remenber, Owl, Ox, Wolverine and Eagle stayed behind to hold Jormag while the other spirits guided the Norn south, so Owl dying didnt had a impact on the the decision that they made...the whole "Burden" book kind of makes the whole thing extremelly confusing and without much sense in my opinion...the moment I got it I literally log off the game and couldnt play it again till the next episode, not sure why Anet have to allways remove everything that is cool from Norn and replace it with boring stuff.

  • Jimbru.6014Jimbru.6014 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Regarding Eagle, it is interesting to note that Eagle does not have a shrine in Lost Spirits' Hallow in Hoelbrak. I'd bet there's a reason for that.

    As for Anet nerfing Norn culture into the ground, I agree. For starters, I've never much liked the Norn anyway; they remind me of EQ's Barbarians, essentially just big dumb humans with a bad take on a hybrid Nordic/Celtic culture. Whereas what Anet SHOULD have done is emphasize heavily the Norns' difference from humans. They are a race of giants who were in Tyria before humans arrived. Their culture is old enough that it effectively disappears into an unknown origin in the past, except for a few legends spoken by Thruln the Lost and the Kodan. There was so much that could have been built upon to make the Norn unique that has been ignored, and it's a kitten shame, really.

  • Sajuuk Khar.1509Sajuuk Khar.1509 Member ✭✭✭

    @Felipe.1807 said:
    "From what I can gather, having been never lucky enough to be on a map where the giant icebrood is defeated, the Spirits where with Asgeir when he made his deal with Jormag. They could have refused to follow up with it, since they weren't bound by it, but I suspect that the Death of Owl changed things."

    From what I remenber, Owl, Ox, Wolverine and Eagle stayed behind to hold Jormag while the other spirits guided the Norn south, so Owl dying didnt had a impact on the the decision that they made...the whole "Burden" book kind of makes the whole thing extremelly confusing and without much sense in my opinion...the moment I got it I literally log off the game and couldnt play it again till the next episode, not sure why Anet have to allways remove everything that is cool from Norn and replace it with boring stuff.

    I don't see how the "Burden" book makes the situation confusing. Nor do I see how it removes anything "cool" from the Norn. If anything, the whole Burden story is more interesting then what we originally believed.

    The original story we had was that the Norn was just so kitten dumb, and idiotic, that even their own "gods" went "guys, you big dumb, go south!" in an effort to save them. The Burden story makes the situation far more complex, and interesting, both on the Norn's side, and Jormag's side.

  • Valmir.4590Valmir.4590 Member ✭✭

    @Sajuuk Khar.1509 said:
    I don't see how the "Burden" book makes the situation confusing. Nor do I see how it removes anything "cool" from the Norn. If anything, the whole Burden story is more interesting then what we originally believed.

    The original story we had was that the Norn was just so kitten dumb, and idiotic, that even their own "gods" went "guys, you big dumb, go south!" in an effort to save them. The Burden story makes the situation far more complex, and interesting, both on the Norn's side, and Jormag's side.

    Agreed. Sure, the original story was boastful and all, but it painted a rather sad pictures of the Norns, who were so kitten individualistic and eager to fight Jormag that they'd rather all die than change tactics. But I'm really happy that Anet is finally focusing on Norn and Charrs with a Dragons far more complex in its approaches than any other before.

  • Stephen.6312Stephen.6312 Member ✭✭✭

    @Jimbru.6014 said:
    Jormag's energy opposes that of Primordus. We learned that a long time ago. Primordus, from what (not so) little we've seen of him to guess, is even bigger and potentially more powerful than Kralk. "Forging Steel" just gave us our first modern hint of Primordus' presence (or at least his minions and related energy) in the far north since the days when Primordus was sleeping by the Central Transfer Chamber, below Earthshake Basin in Frostgorge Sound (Primordus was how Earthshake got its name). With their energies in direct opposition, it's reasonable to assume Jormag and Primordus aren't on friendly terms, and their proximity to each other could affect them adversely. Primordus could be the "horror to come" that Jormag wants to fight...or just one of the horrors.

    With that thought about Primordus' size, it's also important to note that we've not actually seen Jormag in game yet, beyond a few vague scenes that don't really give us much to go on. If the size of Jormag's tooth is anything to judge by, we're gonna need a bigger boat...

    Balthazar turned Prim's magic against Jormy's. Prior to his manipulation, players never encountered a scenario in which the (bound) minions of Terrestrial Elder Dragons openly fought one another. (Let's set the sylvari aside for now; they're a little different). That situation hasn't changed.

    You're assuming that Prim and Jormy are their own worst enemies based on Balthazar's insight and Taimi's misunderstanding.

    I think that I'll agree to disagree with your point.

  • Has anyone considered that the part about Spirits of the Wild guiding norn south might've been a lie, too? We don't exactly have details on the how -part. For all it's worth, Asgeir might've chosen the location himself, claiming the spirits "told him in a vision".

    I agree on Braham. Jormag is definitely going to be pulling the strings on him, even if we only go by the words uttered by Wolf: the chosen one will kill Jormag, or fall under his/her influence.

    I believe Bangar is merely a chess piece to get the commander in the perfect position to coerce them over. The point where Bangar crosses that one line and the commander's composure breaks is when Jormag will bite into their psyche like a leech.

  • Thornwolf.9721Thornwolf.9721 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @NorthernRedStar.3054 said:
    Has anyone considered that the part about Spirits of the Wild guiding norn south might've been a lie, too? We don't exactly have details on the how -part. For all it's worth, Asgeir might've chosen the location himself, claiming the spirits "told him in a vision".

    I agree on Braham. Jormag is definitely going to be pulling the strings on him, even if we only go by the words uttered by Wolf: the chosen one will kill Jormag, or fall under his/her influence.

    I believe Bangar is merely a chess piece to get the commander in the perfect position to coerce them over. The point where Bangar crosses that one line and the commander's composure breaks is when Jormag will bite into their psyche like a leech.

    At this point Id love to join jormag, its far more interesting than where we stand to oppose it. Id love to see jormag be a good guy of sorts, or an anti-hero who isn't just going to die. Id love for the norn as a norn only player to be taken back to GW1 where they were cool and had so many layers to them, Im tired of feeling like the norn are always the punching bag. I feel like A-net views us as a bad joke....

  • Psientist.6437Psientist.6437 Member ✭✭✭

    Wow, Braham may have made a deal with Jormag. That is a convincing possibility. Perhaps the studio will wring every last ounce of agency from Braham. I mean, he did yell at us!

    There is a problem with the Jormag vs Primordius vs DSD plot; the All, in its current configuration, requires 6 Elder dragons. If Jormag plans on killing Primodius or the DSD, then they must also know how to change the configuration of the All. Though, they might also have some scions available to fill the other Elder dragons roles. Without scions, the plan you offer would destroy Tyria. With scions, your plan wouldn't end the Elder dragon cycle.

    I agree that Jormag wants to end the cycle but think his reasoning leads him to believe the only way to do so is to freeze Tyria. Kill the disease by killing the host.

    all primes work and not tearing down has value
    ready purrlayer @ any parsed feels enhance the value of something that is already worth everything
    what other chordal approach but penultimate singing along with other quantum cuddle clocks

  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited March 22, 2020

    @NorthernRedStar.3054 said:
    Has anyone considered that the part about Spirits of the Wild guiding norn south might've been a lie, too? We don't exactly have details on the how -part. For all it's worth, Asgeir might've chosen the location himself, claiming the spirits "told him in a vision".

    The Spirits of the Wild are in constant communication with the norn. If they didn't say "hey, you guys, stop dying to Jormag and go south" then they would have told at least their havrouns "uh, we never told Asgeir that... but better keep it secret from other norn so you all don't kill yourselves against Jormag."

    The way Wolf treats Braham seems to indicate that the Spirits of the Wild believed that the norn race on their own, even now with three other Elder Dragons slain, cannot win against Jormag. That a champion of sorts is needed.

    @Psientist.6437 said:
    There is a problem with the Jormag vs Primordius vs DSD plot; the All, in its current configuration, requires 6 Elder dragons. If Jormag plans on killing Primodius or the DSD, then they must also know how to change the configuration of the All. Though, they might also have some scions available to fill the other Elder dragons roles. Without scions, the plan you offer would destroy Tyria. With scions, your plan wouldn't end the Elder dragon cycle.

    I agree that Jormag wants to end the cycle but think his reasoning leads him to believe the only way to do so is to freeze Tyria. Kill the disease by killing the host.

    Given Aurene's dialogue in the latest release, it is possible that Jormag is willing to accept oblivion for the sake of ending the cycle. An "I will end it, one way or another." Kind of deal.

    The whole "freezing the world" has been its spiel since the core game, and one of the subtle plot points of Icebrood Saga is that Jormag has noticed and acknowledged a change in the status quo, and is shifting their goals and actions in accordance to this. Obviously this means acknowledging the Commander and offering assistance to Aurene as seen in Episode 1, but I think it may also mean changing the whole "freeze the world" thing.

    And I would argue that if Jormag did have scions to replace the Elder Dragons, that such scions would likely being under their thrall, and thus having 2+ scions under their command would change the Elder Dragon cycle, since it would no longer be six Elder Dragons vying for magic with different goals and intentions, but one Elder Dragon with several subservient Elder Dragons vying for magic and one singular goal.

    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.

  • Psientist.6437Psientist.6437 Member ✭✭✭

    @Konig Des Todes.2086 said:

    @NorthernRedStar.3054 said:
    Has anyone considered that the part about Spirits of the Wild guiding norn south might've been a lie, too? We don't exactly have details on the how -part. For all it's worth, Asgeir might've chosen the location himself, claiming the spirits "told him in a vision".

    The Spirits of the Wild are in constant communication with the norn. If they didn't say "hey, you guys, stop dying to Jormag and go south" then they would have told at least their havrouns "uh, we never told Asgeir that... but better keep it secret from other norn so you all don't kill yourselves against Jormag."

    The way Wolf treats Braham seems to indicate that the Spirits of the Wild believed that the norn race on their own, even now with three other Elder Dragons slain, cannot win against Jormag. That a champion of sorts is needed.

    @Psientist.6437 said:
    There is a problem with the Jormag vs Primordius vs DSD plot; the All, in its current configuration, requires 6 Elder dragons. If Jormag plans on killing Primodius or the DSD, then they must also know how to change the configuration of the All. Though, they might also have some scions available to fill the other Elder dragons roles. Without scions, the plan you offer would destroy Tyria. With scions, your plan wouldn't end the Elder dragon cycle.

    I agree that Jormag wants to end the cycle but think his reasoning leads him to believe the only way to do so is to freeze Tyria. Kill the disease by killing the host.

    Given Aurene's dialogue in the latest release, it is possible that Jormag is willing to accept oblivion for the sake of ending the cycle. An "I will end it, one way or another." Kind of deal.

    The whole "freezing the world" has been its spiel since the core game, and one of the subtle plot points of Icebrood Saga is that Jormag has noticed and acknowledged a change in the status quo, and is shifting their goals and actions in accordance to this. Obviously this means acknowledging the Commander and offering assistance to Aurene as seen in Episode 1, but I think it may also mean changing the whole "freeze the world" thing.

    And I would argue that if Jormag did have scions to replace the Elder Dragons, that such scions would likely being under their thrall, and thus having 2+ scions under their command would change the Elder Dragon cycle, since it would no longer be six Elder Dragons vying for magic with different goals and intentions, but one Elder Dragon with several subservient Elder Dragons vying for magic and one singular goal.

    The question then would be how innate is destruction to the Elder dragon cycle. Can magic be cycled, routed, what have you without destruction? Is Aurene the only Elder dragon that could and would Jormag's scions be able to? Jormag may be responding to the change in status quo because it presents an opportunity to finally freeze the world.

    all primes work and not tearing down has value
    ready purrlayer @ any parsed feels enhance the value of something that is already worth everything
    what other chordal approach but penultimate singing along with other quantum cuddle clocks

  • Felipe.1807Felipe.1807 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Sajuuk Khar.1509 said:

    @Felipe.1807 said:
    "From what I can gather, having been never lucky enough to be on a map where the giant icebrood is defeated, the Spirits where with Asgeir when he made his deal with Jormag. They could have refused to follow up with it, since they weren't bound by it, but I suspect that the Death of Owl changed things."

    From what I remenber, Owl, Ox, Wolverine and Eagle stayed behind to hold Jormag while the other spirits guided the Norn south, so Owl dying didnt had a impact on the the decision that they made...the whole "Burden" book kind of makes the whole thing extremelly confusing and without much sense in my opinion...the moment I got it I literally log off the game and couldnt play it again till the next episode, not sure why Anet have to allways remove everything that is cool from Norn and replace it with boring stuff.

    I don't see how the "Burden" book makes the situation confusing. Nor do I see how it removes anything "cool" from the Norn. If anything, the whole Burden story is more interesting then what we originally believed.

    The original story we had was that the Norn was just so kitten dumb, and idiotic, that even their own "gods" went "guys, you big dumb, go south!" in an effort to save them. The Burden story makes the situation far more complex, and interesting, both on the Norn's side, and Jormag's side.

    eh, hard disagree with that...
    So what was the original story...
    Norns lead by Aesgir, "Favored of the Spirits of the Wild", march against Jormag to kill him...as his title implies, he should probably be some kind of "chosen one" of the Spirits...the fight goes on and he realizes that they cant beat the Jormag, at this moment, the Spirits give him vision, of a sanctuary, were he should lead the norn, so they could survive. The major Spirits guide the Norn south while Ox, Owl, Wolverine and Eagle stay behind to hold Jormag and his minions. Owl and the other spirits are defeated by the dragon, but the Norn reach south to safety, Aesgir dont come empity handed of this hunt, he have the tooth of jormag with him, which is proof that the dragon can damaged, and if can be damaged, it can be killed. So it creates the whole legend around it, if you cant hurt the tooth, you cant kill the dragon, and so, the norn await a "chosen one" like Aesgir was so they can finally fight Jormag again.

    What the "new" lore changed...
    While in vanilla gw2 theres a charr priory agent on Hoelbrak telling about a reserch of a Jotun Scroll that could be in Aesgir possession, its extremelly vague of what the scroll was meant to do in the first place....

    Aegir wasnt much of a "Favored of the Spirits of the Wild"...most likelly he was just a above average Norn, like Eir or the PC, he just happened to have a magic scroll with him, that he used to enhance his weapon and was able to damage Jormag....Braham manage to find a scroll like that, which he uses on Eir bow....
    -So, why didnt Aesgir, or even Braham didnt used the magic scroll on more weapons? Okay, lets just assume that scroll only have enough magic for one weapon...why let Braham enhance Eirs bow? Why not just some Asura Mega Golem or Charr weapon? Okay...why Braham? Its not like its only Braham that use the bow, and as Zojja said, we were 74% or something of Destiny Edge fire power...Okay, why isnt the Priory or the Pact or whatever searching every corner of the Shiverpeaks for Aesgir weapon? Having two dragon slaying weapons is much better then one, or we just gonna assume that they power goes away with time? Allright, couldnt be "ignited" again with Eir bow like we did with Balthazar sword and Sohotin? Allright, lets drop that for a sec...

    The whole legend of the Tooth is a fairy tale, its comfirmed by a Elder on Hoelbrak(which was introduced on A Crack in the Ice, Ulf it is his name I believe)
    -Okay, so the legend is just something to " keep the young from getting themselves killed trying to hunt Jormag", and yet, Wolf later on keep saying how Braham is bound by fate now to fight Jormag, since he was the one that harmed the Tooth...but why? The whole thing is fake, there is no choosen one, its just a magic scroll...a skrit could had harmed the Tooth, would the skrit be bound by fate too and be the choosem of the spirits lol?

    originally Aesgir fought Jormag, and once he realized that he could not be defeated, the Spirits showed him that he should take the Norn and go south, while the major Spirits guided him, the minor ones stayed to fight Jormag and his minions so the norn had a chance to escape
    -Yeah...not really...Aesgir did fought Jormag...he did took the tooth out of his mouth...but, the Spirits never talked to him, was Jormag that did, was Jormag that told him to go south, in fact, Jormag let the Norn escape..."The voice spoke true" we know by this that Jormag wasnt just messing with him...but if that is true...why did Owl and the others died on the first place? They stayed behind to hold Jormag, but Jormag wanst chansing the Norns in the first place lol...something really wrong here, not even talking about the major Spirits, they never guided the Norn towards south...Aesgir lied that the Spirits gave him a vision, they were never involved with the whole thing...."Jormag didn't want to eliminate my people, the voice said, but a dragon will always kill to survive. " okay, but whats up with all the Icebrood and Claws flying around in the Shiverpeaks killing Norn, Kodan, Quaggan and pretty much everything in their path...thats not for survival.

    This whole thing is like if they took Kalla, and instead of being the one that killed the imperator and free the female charr, they maded her just a slave, and the one that killed the Imperator was some random Ash legion, and they just used Kalla as image to inspire the other females, cause the Legions wanted more soldiers or whatever....is that a twist that nobody would expect? yeah it is...is that fun and something that the charr players will like? Probably not...Anet just took probably the greatest legends of the norn(the Tooth and Aesgir) and turned into lies....how is that not killing norn lore?

  • Jimbru.6014Jimbru.6014 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited March 23, 2020

    Another random thought out of all this: Jormag's storm was hindering Bangar's progress as much as ours, which doesn't seem likely if Jormag was actually trying to lure Bangar to it. It's starting to look to me like Bangar might be acting on his own initiative, not because of Jormag whispering to him. Where THAT could lead is possibly even more frightening...

  • Felipe.1807Felipe.1807 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Jimbru.6014 said:
    Another random thought out of all this: Jormag's storm was hindering Bangar's progress as much as ours, which doesn't seem likely if Jormag was actually trying to lure Bangar to it. It's starting to look to me like Bangar might be acting on his own initiative, not because of Jormag whispering to him. Where THAT could lead is possibly even more frightening...

    I do think that the "great" idea of tame a elder dragon came from Bangar, but I dont think that "his voice is his own" right now...in the books of Bjora Marches west, the Kodan say that nobody is allowed to get on their village, cause the whispers there are unberable to those not used to it...in fact, we see NPCs all the time speaking with Jormag through the map, or during the Drakkar event...at this point I would say that everyone is under Jormag influence, with the exception of the Commander and Jhavi...I dont recall Jhavi talking back to Jormag, neither did the Commander(we did fought Mordremoth inside his own mind, guess the commander mind is strong enough to resist Jormag influence), but Rytlock, Crecia and Braham all showed signs of getting controlled by her(Rytlock and Crecia even tried to kill us).

  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Psientist.6437 said:
    The question then would be how innate is destruction to the Elder dragon cycle. Can magic be cycled, routed, what have you without destruction? Is Aurene the only Elder dragon that could and would Jormag's scions be able to? Jormag may be responding to the change in status quo because it presents an opportunity to finally freeze the world.

    It seems to me, based on Sadizi during The Way Forward especially, that the Elder Dragons are after any and all kind of magic. As established by Oola's recordings in Metrica, as well as notebooks by Snaff in Scarlet's hideout in S2, as well as by Ogden during Hidden Arcana, all life contains magic.

    So the Elder Dragons being insatiably desiring of magic, they cause destruction to get it. This would imply, as well, that an Elder Dragon not desiring all the magic they can get would not be inherently destructive.

    From there, we go into the realms of the Elder Dragons' goals, and the effect that magical torment has on them and how said torment alters their goals and actions.

    Kralkatorrik, for example, when afflicted by Torment sought to consume and corrupt everything to end his pain, and destroy anything he could not. But before Torment, his goal is a bit less clear - what seems most clear about it, is that he didn't want his vision of a future where mortals and dragons were at peace without him to occur, though why he didn't want this is unclear since "Elder Dragons fear nothing, not even death". So Glint's belief - that he fought to avoid death - seems false; I would argue that Kralkatorrik likely hated mortals for some reason, as he showed great love for his family. If so, then he would have been destructive regardless.

    But if we look at Jormag and Zhaitan, who's goals even when afflicted by (hypothetical still) magical torment, are something that can be viewed as "good intentions gone wrong". Zhaitan is proclaiming a kingdom where people do not lose their lost loved, and never have to face death, but it goes about creating such by enslaving, killing and "resurrecting" through undeath, and forcing people to accept its view. I currently theorize that it could be its torment that led Zhaitan to seek the position of ruler (they keep everyone in their original positions of power, except kings and queens that become its Eyes, demoted to scouts that serve the dragon directly) and to force all to its whims of "immortality without lost loves".

    Jormag's position of "offering power and protection to those who ask it" could be seen in a similar light. It's even possible that Jormag isn't nearly as afflicted by torment as the others for some reason (as Jormag does seem the most reasonable, what with bargaining with Asgeir rather than duking it out to the end as Mordremoth did even when communicating).

    All this is to say, that I don't think Aurene's in a unique position of non-destructiveness, but that the torment tends to lead the Elder Dragons to seeking more magic, thus inevitably leading them towards destructiveness.

    Though if Jormag (or any other Elder Dragon) were to manage to make its scions subservient Elder Dragons, then it wouldn't need to worry about being destructive, since the "Elder Dragon cycle" is that of six Elder Dragons so at odds that they end up putting each other to sleep due to their competitive and equally consuming natures.

    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.

  • Poormany.4507Poormany.4507 Member ✭✭✭

    @Jimbru.6014 said:
    Another random thought out of all this: Jormag's storm was hindering Bangar's progress as much as ours, which doesn't seem likely if Jormag was actually trying to lure Bangar to it. It's starting to look to me like Bangar might be acting on his own initiative, not because of Jormag whispering to him. Where THAT could lead is possibly even more frightening...

    The Boneskinner footprints outside of Bangar's office do seem to point to Jormag having at least some kind of influence over Bangar. Even if it was just Jormag planting the idea of being tamable into Bangar to set the latter's plan to go to Jormag in action, which is what I suspect happened. I think the storm was just Jormag playing both Bangar and the PC to act synchronously according to its plans and be where Jormag wants them to be at the right time. I do think Jormag's carefully planned everything that's happened so far in the Saga, possibly even his Whisper getting killed to get Bangar and the PC at the same place at the same time.

  • Sajuuk Khar.1509Sajuuk Khar.1509 Member ✭✭✭

    @Poormany.4507 said:
    The Boneskinner footprints outside of Bangar's office do seem to point to Jormag having at least some kind of influence over Bangar. Even if it was just Jormag planting the idea of being tamable into Bangar to set the latter's plan to go to Jormag in action, which is what I suspect happened. I think the storm was just Jormag playing both Bangar and the PC to act synchronously according to its plans and be where Jormag wants them to be at the right time. I do think Jormag's carefully planned everything that's happened so far in the Saga, possibly even his Whisper getting killed to get Bangar and the PC at the same place at the same time.

    I could see Jormag setting this up.

    Making it to where Bangar gets the final kill on the Whisper allows Bangar to claim the victory over the dragon champion, and get more Charr on his side(as we hear has happened already), this in turn makes Bangar's rebellion stronger, causing fracturing within the ranks of the Charr, who have served as the military backbone of the Pact's armies thus far.

    In a perfect scenario, this rebellion could collapse Charr society entirely, removing them from the equation in term of forces Jormag and his Icebrood have to combat. Even if it doesn't(which it wont because the player will save the day) this still causes a massive disruption among Charr society, a lot of wasted resources, and a fracturing of the combined might of the Charr which is likely to last awhile, again, weakening the position that stands before him.

    To make it better, Jormag could theoretically just make another Whisper, slap it into another minion, and get back the mental subversion machine he had with Drakkar.