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Mogu

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Mogu
Mogu.jpg
Classification Large Humanoid
Faction/Affiliation Mogu Empire, Independent
Racial capital Mogu'shan Palace
Racial leader(s) IconSmall LeiShen.gif Lei Shen, the Thunder King
Homeworld Azeroth
Area(s) Pandaria
Primary language(s) Mogu
Secondary language(s) Zandali
Organization(s) Various clans
Sources: World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria

The mogu are a powerful magical race[1] who live in Pandaria. Proud, hateful, and powerful both physically and magically, the mogu are the foremost enemies of the pandaren. The mogu and pandaren have fought over the future of Pandaria since time immemorial.

Though created by the Titans during the creation of Azeroth to serve and protect the land, they were later afflicted by the Curse of Flesh, eventually losing their way and valuing power and control above all else. Under the reign of emperors like Lei Shen, the Mogu Empire dominated Pandaria. After the Pandaren Revolution and the downfall of the empire, the mogu clans scattered.

Following the arrival of the Alliance and the Horde, the mogu clans made various attacks to reclaim their former glory from the pandaren in the ensuring chaos. Shan Bu and Zhao-Jin the Bloodletter in particular led their clans against the pandaren-controlled Vale of Eternal Blossoms and Townlong Steppes. After the fall of the newly resurrected Thunder King, the mogu have once again been defeated.

Contents

History

Origin

The mogu are a race created by the titans. Some say that the mogu race was created in the image of Norushen.[2] They were once a legion of stone, heartless and obedient, and by their masters' command, the mogu fought the terrible servants of the Old Gods, shaped the mountains and carved the rivers of the land. The mogu created a magical cradle of life in a hidden valley now known as the Vale of Eternal Blossoms.[3]

For many ages the mogu guarded the work of the titans. The mogu served the titanic watcher Ra-den when the titans left Azeroth. When the Old Gods used the Curse of Flesh on the mogu, they became terrified as their stone forms transformed them into mortal beings. They soon began to breathe, to bleed and to die. But with the flesh came the other curses of mortality: pride and greed, fear and anger. No longer united in purpose, the mogu fought amongst themselves. Powerful mogu warlords gathered up followers and made war on one another. Their battles scorched the land, terrifying the other mortal races.[4]

The Thunder King

During this Age of a Hundred Kings, Lei Shen was born. Once Lei Shen had come of age and commanded his own legions, he announced his intent to awaken the gods. Only his most loyal of followers accompanied him where no mogu had dared tread: into the very heart of the Thundering Mountain, the sacred home of the one the mogu had called their master.[5] History does not record what Lei Shen found when he ascended the mountain and disappeared into its vaults. But when he returned, he wielded the power of a thousand storms and declared the mount to be his seat of power. Atop its summit he built a majestic and forbidden city.[6] Armed with the power of storms, Lei Shen, now known as the Thunder King, gathered together his followers and rose to power "the mogu way", eliminating his rivals one by one. [7] Many mogu saw in Lei Shen the unity of purpose that had been lacking in the generations since their masters had fallen silent. They flocked around the Thunder King's banner and eagerly did his bidding as he enslaved the other races, believing - as Lei Shen did - that the "lesser" races should serve the mogu, just as the mogu had once served their masters.[8]

Possessed of immense size and strength, the mogu built an empire based on might, in which the weak – other races – were subjugated, and the strong – always mogu – ascended to power. Imposing stone monuments and titanic siege engines displayed the power of the mogu to the rest of the land. They turned their strength on the lesser inhabitants of Pandaria, shaping flesh to their whims as they shaped rock. The great Serpent's Spine wall, which separates the Townlong Steppes and the Dread Wastes from the rest of Pandaria, was built by the mogu's slaves during the rule of Emperor Lei Shen.[9]

Pandaren revolution

12,000 years ago[10], mogu emperors ruled Pandaria, keeping the gentle pandaren as their slaves. The lucky ones clowned enough to entertain their mogu masters. Those pandaren lived in stone palaces, and their lives knew relative luxury. But that luxury ended when a joke offended and only the snapping of a spine or the popped removal of a head could inspire more mogu laughter.[11] Throughout many emperors' reigns, the pandaren may have attempted several failed uprisings. Although Emperor Tsao reformed the slave laws, allowing the pandaren more freedom, his successor's actions led to the downfall of the mogu empire. Emperor Lao-Fe was brutal and had very severe and strict rules on slaves. He ruled with a no-weapon policy, but the pandaren, through tenacity, diplomacy, and a unique form of unarmed combat, staged a successful revolution that deposed the mogu and established an empire that would prosper for thousands of years.[12] After the downfall of the mogu empire, the Zandalari launched a full scale invasion of Pandaria to destroy the Pandaren empire and restore rule of the land to their mogu allies. The mogu clans, no longer led by a central ruler, began to break up and fall. However, the majority of mogu clans assisted the Zandalari in their invasion, launching raids of Pandaren towns, villages, and farms. The Zandalari penetrated deep into Pandaria, and besieged Dawn's Blossom. Despite their attempts, the attacking forces eventually lost the battle, turning the tide of the war and causing a Zandalari retreat. After the war, the mogu clans scattered completely, and most of them were not seen again for centuries.[citation needed] Warlords and emperors that were killed, were buried in Tu Shen Burial Ground by pandaren.

Recent history

After millennia of prosperous rule by the pandaren, mogu scouts returned to the land. However, it seems the mogu had something much grander planned than just scouting the world. A few mogu clans began attacking regions of Pandaria, gaining control of small towns and farmlands. A few clans had become united by a new king, Xin the Weaponmaster, whose lofty dreams of conquest threatened the region. However, despite his attempts, Xin was killed before any of his plans could come to fruition. [citation needed]

The mogu later stepped up their attacks, launching full scale assaults on the Vale of Eternal Blossoms and Townlong Steppes, besieging Niuzao Temple. Every defeat they suffered seemed to strengthen them, as new waves of mogu began to appear, now reunited with the Zandalari, who had returned to Pandaria. Having rebuilt their former alliance, the Zandalari began to fulfill an ancient prophecy to resurrect the First Emperor. The mogu launched a full scale assault in a last attempt to reconquer Pandaria.[citation needed]

The mogu craved the domain they once held, and to regain it were willing to sweep usurpers and invaders alike into the dust. Awakened from his tomb by his old Zandalari allies, Lei Shen returned, promising to reclaim his ancient empire. The Thunder King reemerged on the Throne of Thunder that served as his seat of power, gathering armies from all over Pandaria to his island citadel.

Once more the heroes of the Horde and Alliance were called forth to take on this threat, doing so in the midst of their own dark and bloody war reignited by the decimation of Theramore and the betrayal that split the Kirin Tor. Waging war on two fronts isn’t easy and the Shado-Pan had no interest in anything more than using the power of both factions to put down a more clear and present danger.[13]

After the death of Lei Shen at the hands of adventurers, the mogu seemingly dispersed from the Throne of Thunder and returned to their subtle existence in Pandaria. No longer united by a common leader, the mogu have returned to a group of sparse clans hidden away from the Pandaren.[citation needed]

Culture

The Mogu'shan Palace, located in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, contains some of the secrets of their lost empire, including the Titan facilities and libraries. Mogu culture is very heavily influenced by their former masters. Over time, the mogu developed aspects of culture on their own, although main titan principles are still practiced by mogu to this day.[1]

Magic

Mogu.png
Main article: Flesh-Shaping

Unlike "lesser races" that need schooling in the arts of magic, the ability was innate in the mogu. From what is known about mogu usage of magic, it is clear that their magic users did not fall into known categories, such as mage or warlock. Special emphasis was placed on Flesh-Shaping or spirit-capture magic.[14] The mogu are flesh-shapers and can create other creatures. They are known to have created the Saurok‎ and Grummle.[15]

Spiritbinders

For many ages, the mogu used flesh as a weapon: warped, bent, and twisted to their malevolent will. But after their failures in creating the saurok race, the mogu sought to create another weapon... this time forged with total obedience. Their ancient research delivered to them methods of turning flesh to stone, and back again. Lifeless rock could be animated, providing a willing (or unwilling) soul could be captured within. These dark rituals created the Stoneborn, soldiers of jade and dark magic forged from the living essence of conquered victims. These creations were powerful... terrible to behold, and above all else, one hundred percent loyal to their mogu masters.[16]

Slavery

In many ways the mogu are based on brutal strength and terrible cunning. Even with powerful magic at their disposal, the mogu often preferred to use slaves to build their massive monuments.[17] Enslaved humanoids were marked with branding irons.[18] Forged of iron and imbued with spells of subjugation and pain, the manacles with inward facing spikes were forced onto the slave races of the mogu.[19] The blood of many mogu slaves were shed with a bone whip fashioned from the spine of some large and ancient creature.[20]

When the mogu had exhausted their options for enslaved mortal warriors, they turned their attention to creating armies of animated constructs to do their fighting for them. These terracotta warriors would sometimes sit dormant for centuries.[21]

Government

The Mogu Empire is a meritocracy as well as a absolute monarchy/dictatorship, where the previous regime and/or dynasty must be overpowered and executed.[22]

Valley of Emperors

The mogu view their dead as a collection of parts. Souls could be bound to stone for later use. Flesh and blood could be reforged to extend the lives of those loyal to the emperor. To be buried intact was a symbol of great power and respect. Here lies the Valley of Emperors, the resting grounds of a hundred generations of warlords, kings and emperors who once ruled this land. Grave-rob at your own risk![23]

Relations with the Zandalari

When the mogu still ruled over Pandaria, they were allied with the Zandalari, who assisted them against the embryonic Pandaren empire. Despite being defeated and pushed from the island now called Pandaria, the Zandalari, just like the mogu, remained in Pandaren lore, and slowly turned into Pandaren children's "bogeymen".[24]

With the mists that once shrouded Pandaria now gone, the Zandalari, curious about Pandaria and their ancient mogu allies, have dispatched forces to Pandaria in an attempt to re-connect with the mogu. It seems they want to help them retake the land from the Pandaren and once again bring it under mogu rule. However, the Zandalari seem too desperate to acquire Pandaren territory and appear to have more motives than just helping out their ancient mogu allies.[25]

Notable

Name Role Condition Location
 Monara Last queen of the mogu Deceased-Killable Rare spawn in Throne of Thunder
 Emperor Lei Shen The Thunder King, first king of the mogu Killable / Deceased (lore) Throne of Thunder
 Xin the Weaponmaster Last king of the mogu Deceased (lore) / Killable (WoW) Mogu'shan Palace
 Shan Bu Killable Townlong Steppes, Isle of Thunder
 Shan Jitong Killable The Jade Forest
 Zian of the Endless Shadow Deceased Mogu'shan Vaults
 Meng the Demented Deceased Mogu'shan Vaults
 Qiang the Merciless Deceased Mogu'shan Vaults
 Subetai the Swift Deceased Mogu'shan Vaults
 Emperor Tsao Deceased
 Emperor Dojan Firecrown Deceased
 Emperor Dojan II Deceased

Clans

Class

Notes

An undead mogu creature, previously referred to as "Jiang-shi".
  • The Twin Consorts are rumored to be the only known female mogu in existence.[26]
  • Mogu (魔古, mógǔ) is Chinese for, roughly, "occult ancient" or "devil ancient," and Mogu'shan (魔古山, Mógǔshān) is Chinese for "Mogu Mountain".
  • The Mogu bear striking resemblance to the Chinese guardian lions (also known as Shishi lions). Indeed, early concept art for the race is labeled "Foo Dog Warrior."
  • Mogu use the same skeleton as Eredar/Draenei.
  • Jiang-shi (殭屍, jiāngshī), a special kind of undead mogu, was slated to appear in Pandaria according to the Mists of Pandaria Bestiary. However any mention of it was removed and there has been no mention of the creature name in-game. The model has since then been used as spectral creatures for different creatures.

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.
  • It's possible the mogu created the pandaren, similar to the saurok‎, which also broke free from their control.

Gender and reproduction

While initially created by the titans, sources such as the Lei Shen lore object describe mogu as being 'born' to other mogu, and "The Lost Dynasty" says that mogu can have sons (though not how). This suggests at least some degree of reproduction by mogu themselves, following their being affected by the Curse of Flesh. However, all mogu known to currently exist are male.[26] Mogu females used to exist, with mothers and sisters being used in mogu insults,[27] a famous saga about Lei Shen and Sparkmancer Vu's feud over a woman,[28] and Monara being a slain queen (and the last queen) of the mogu.[29] This raises the issue of the current state of mogu reproduction.

Since mogu females have existed in the past, it can be surmised that they were created by the titans along with the males. Their apparent lack of presence raises a number of possibilities:

  • The females have mostly or entirely died out, perhaps due to a relative physical weakness in an extremely violent culture (although a race dependent on sexual reproduction would be expected to take great care, probably on an instinctive level, to ensure that this did not happen).
    • This is unlikely, unless the females were systematically being killed by the males for some reason. It is also impossible to say how natural female mogu would compare to the males -- while human males tend to be the physically stronger of the two, the female is the strongest in some other species (such as hawks). But disparity in strength alone would not seem to account for wiping out an entire half (presumably) of the population.
  • The females are (perhaps owing to their scarcity) being hidden, or protected far from where they may suffer harm (or where their children would be placed in danger)
    • This possibility is supported by what is known of mogu culture. In several real life human cultures, especially those more reliant on older values, the women are essentially forced to stay at home, often with a heavy penalty for appearing in public (see purdah for an example).
  • The females are elsewhere, or simply have not yet been discovered.

It should also be noted that no mogu children have been found to exist, although they are mentioned in Sparkmancer Vu's epitaph. This may again suggest that both the females and children are being kept well out of harm's reach, or that neither are any longer to be found in Pandaria. While it seems natural to assume that mogu would reproduce through sexual means, the initial creation of mogu using titan technology should also be remembered, especially considering Lei Shen's possession of much of that technology. Such technology would likely be capable of producing fully-grown mogu.

It is possible that when mogu regained their stone bodies after Lei Shen's conquests, the females were reshaped into asexual male-looking bodies.

While it is possible, if the mogu rely on sexual reproduction to propagate their species, it seems unlikely that they would have allowed all of the females to die out. This suggests that females are likely still in existence, albeit evidently far from any non-mogu eyes. Indeed, if the 'rumours' about the Twin Consorts being the only known mogu females are founded in pandaren experience, this may suggest that no females have been witnessed by any non-mogu race in many hundreds or even thousands of years, if at all. While mogu relics (and the ghost of Monara) prove that females have existed in the past, this serves to illustrate both the common lack of knowledge on the subject, and the apparent scarcity of mogu females.

Lei Shen's Twin Consorts are rumoured to be the only known female mogu in existence[26]. However, these have been confirmed to have been specifically created by Lei Shen, and are "a direct reflection of his will rather than any broader sense of mogu culture as a whole."[26] This description in itself suggests some notable difference between the Consorts and their real-life counterparts, unless it refers only to cultural differences, such as in the roles of men and women within mogu society. For speculation on the creation of the Consorts, see Twin Consorts speculation.

Monara, known as the "last queen of the mogu" apparently represents the last ruling female in mogu society (at least at the level of monarch), slain shortly before the end of the Age of a Hundred Kings.

Body replacement

Mogu do have the ability to take the spirits from one body, or an already dead mogu, to a newly constructed body. It's possible that many of the mogu that have existed simply move on to a new body when their last one has failed. However, if this was the case many previous leaders would have come back and either retained their place in society or attempted to take it back.

Gallery

See also

References

External links