Dream trees, also known as dreamtrees, dreamcatcher trees, anima trees, great trees, great soul-trees, or celestial trees, are enormous trees found throughout Ardenweald. They are responsible for drawing in anima, which condenses into animacones that fall to the ground and are used by the Night Fae to rejuvenate spirits of nature slumbering within Ardenweald's wildseeds. Each tree nestles a heart of the grove near its roots. If a heart is lost, the tirnenn are able to "sing" a new one into existence, though this is a process that takes many seasons. The first step of the process is to collect joyful memories from the grove's former denizens, including those dead, and imbue them into an acorn which will serve as the basis for the new heart. As these trees came about, so too did the tirnenn.
Notes and trivia
- From early on in Ardenweald's development, the artists pictured huge pillar-like trees that held up the firmament and whose canopy became a nebulous mass of magic. Environment artist Gabriel Gonzalez wanted to create something that felt very iconic to Ardenweald, had some movement, and incorporated the symbolism of life and rebirth, leading to the idea of a tree whose branches twisted into a kind of celestial net (which is also a nod to things seen in the Emerald Dream).
- According to art director Ely Cannon, ensuring that the dream trees had the desired effect required special work with new technology. Most trees in World of Warcraft belong to the same model type as props like crates and fences. However, in the case of the dream trees, they are so large that Blizzard had to use world model objects—a model type normally reserved for dungeons and raids and which can support a further-away level of detail. They also support "infinite draw", allowing the trees to always appear on-screen no matter how far away the player is, creating epic vistas in the zone that would be impossible with a normal tree. In addition, dream trees are animated in a way that the artists had never tried before; the spinning canopies are a separate element placed on top of the tree model and marked with infinite draw so that they also load from any distance.
- Another name for the trees, mentioned in concept art, is tree of ages, a name shared with a type of ancient.
- During development, there was a tree called "Tirna Fein".
- The prefix "Tirna" is likely inspired by the realm of Tír na nÓg in Irish mythology and means "Land of". Each of the words used following "Tirna" is either a word or based on a word in Gaelic or Welsh. This forms a contrast with Azerothian World Trees, whose typical suffix "-drassil" is inspired by Yggdrasil in Norse mythology.
- "Achiad" is likely derived from the word "chiad" which means first in Irish and/or the Hebrew name found in the Tanakh/Bible that means friend or partner
- "Eas" means waterfall in Irish, referring to the waterfalls seen throughout its groves
- "Fenn" which is a marsh in various languages, referring tot he marsh-like groves
- "Glen" means valley, as the tree is found in the middle of a valley from mountain-like bark
- "Kaithe" could be based on Irish caith which means to spend or throw, likely in reference to how depleted wildseeds are thrown away into Gormhive to consume
- "Marwol" is Welsh for deadly or fatal, as it has been taken over by the Drust
- "Noch" is likely a reference to either Irish nog (Youth, the name of the Celtic Otherworld referencing thus The Other Side of Bwonsamdi) or English noch (Neither) or Latin noct (Night)
- "Rowen" refers to a field left for the cattle in autumn, referring to how in the storyline it was abandoned
- "Scithe" is based on Irish scith meaning rest or tired, which may be a reference to the Tirnenn's general disposition
- "Vaal" is either based on the English vale (as in a valley) or Dutch vale (as in pale), likely the former as the grove is also found in a valley-like area.
- ^ a b Blizzard Entertainment. Shadowlands - Home. Retrieved on 2020-08-27. “Within this eternal forest, massive dream trees draw in precious anima—soul essence—to feed the spirits of nature awaiting rebirth.”
- ^ a b Blizzard Entertainment 2020-06-03. Shadowlands Preview: Ardenweald and the Night Fae Covenant. Archived from the original on 2020-06-03. “Within this eternal forest, massive dream trees draw in precious anima—the essence of souls that flows through the Shadowlands—to feed the spirits of nature awaiting rebirth into the cycle.”
- ^ Gabe Gonzalez. World of Warcraft Shadowlands - Ardenweald Dreamcatcher Tree. ArtStation. Retrieved on 2021-02-23.
- ^ a b c Cass Marshall 2020-08-20. Shadowlands’ Ardenweald is World of Warcraft’s weirdest forest yet. Polygon. Retrieved on 2020-08-27.
- ^ The Art of World of Warcraft: Shadowlands, pg. 123
- ^ Lady Moonberry during
- ^ Teendynneetll
- ^ a b Garth Holden 2020-08-20. A deep dive into Ardenweald, the Shadowlands realm of hibernation. SA Gamer. Retrieved on 2020-08-27.