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The Loa of Kings, Rezan, confronting Bwonsamdi, the Loa of Death

Loa is the name given by trolls to the beings they worship, such as the Wild Gods,[1][2] beings such as Kith'ix or G'huun, or spirits like wisps.[3] Countless loa exist, most weak, but some very powerful. Most are shapeless, whereas others have animal or creature forms.[4] Powerful, enlightened Zandalari can become loa upon their death - or so it is believed.[4] Many of the Loa make their home in the Garden of the Loa in Zuldazar, or across Zandalar more generally, with major temples found in traditional troll lands.

Background

Early troll tribes, though varying wildly in customs and traditions, all shared a common religion: the worship and reverence for the Wild Gods. The mountain range of Zandalar in southern Kalimdor was home to many loa, and was thus treated as being sacred.[1] Troll priests are devoted to only one loa per troll, while troll druids use the powers of several loa at once. This is something the loa do not like, as they prefer to be worshiped one at a time.[5] Shadow hunters commune with multiple loa as well, and the loa can even channel themselves through the shadow hunters when they use their ceremonial rush'kah masks.[6]

The loa can grant wondrous boons or inflict terrible punishments to trolls. Tales abound in troll culture, of those blessed by the loa with extraordinary regenerative abilities, strengthening their already powerful, natural regeneration.[7] The tale of Vula'jin the Void speaks of how he regrew almost his entire body after standing in a pool of shadowflame. But just as the loa can bless, they can also curse; troll children are taught legends of those cursed by the loa, such as Gri'lek, unable to heal even flesh wounds, to instill the proper respect for their patron spirits.[3]

Zandalari (as well as Darkspear)[8] families often worship their own family loa, cities usually have their own civic deities, and the greatest loa are worshiped by the nation as a whole. Powerful, enlightened Zandalari can become loa upon their death - or so it is believed.[4] An example of such a case is Zanza the Restless.[citation needed]  Different troll tribes may call upon different sets of loa.[9]

Troll druids visiting the Moonglade have been overheard calling the wisps who reside there loa, just as they refer to Goldrinn, Aviana, and the other returned Ancients as loa. Night elves and tauren have tried to counsel these trolls on "correct" druidic nomenclature, but the trolls thus far have been stuck in their ways.[3] The loa were later confirmed to be the same type of being as the Ancient Guardians.[1]

After Vol'jin was mortally wounded during the battle at the Broken Shore, he thought that the loa spirits spoke to him, claiming that the death will come soon. They also whispered the name Sylvanas Windrunner. Vol'jin, thus, named her Warchief of the Horde with his last breath.[10] However, during the Fourth War, the spirit of Vol'jin was summoned by Talanji, Master Gadrin, and Spiritwalker Ebonhorn, and Vol'jin revealed that it was not the loa spirits who told him to name Sylvanas Warchief but something far more powerful.[11] He could not tell who the voices belonged to, the memory being denied by some shadows.[12] It was eventually revealed that the culprit behind getting Vol'jin to name Sylvanas Warchief was Mueh'zala.[13]

Some jungle trolls of the Darkspear tribe consider bird spirits to be weak, capricious, undeserving of their worship, and best left to the Amani.[14]

Loa gain in strength and power the more worshipers, offerings, idols and sacrifices they receive.[15] Carrying the symbol of a loa can help strengthen them.[16] Bwonsamdi also grows in power with every soul under his care.[17]

Known

Name Title Worshipers Status
IconSmall Rhino.gif Akali Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[18]
Active
IconSmall Eagle.gif Akil'darah Forest trollForest troll Revantusk
Forest trollForest troll Vilebranch
Active
IconSmall Eagle.gif Akil'zon Forest trollForest troll Amani
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[19]
Active
IconSmall ThunderLizard.gif Akunda Loa of storms and new beginnings Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Active
IconSmall Panther.gif Bethekk Jungle trollJungle troll Gurubashi
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[20]
Active
IconSmall Bwonsamdi.gif Bwonsamdi Guardian of the Dead
Loa of Graves
Loa of Kings[21]
Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[22]
Active
IconSmall Kobra.gif Dambala Loa of Treachery Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[citation needed] 
Deceased
IconSmall SpiderGiant.gif Elortha no Shadra God of Spiders,
The Venom Queen,
Mother of Venom,
Silk Dancer,
Death's Love,[23]
Mistress of Spies[24]
Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear[25]
Forest trollForest troll Vilebranch
Forest trollForest troll Witherbark
Jungle trollJungle troll Gurubashi
Sand trollSand troll Farraki[23]
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Active[26]
IconSmall Kimbul.gif Eraka no Kimbul God of Tigers,
Lord of Beasts,
King of Cats,
the Prey's Doom[23]
Sand trollSand troll Farraki
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Tortollan Tortollans[27]
Active
IconSmall G'huun.gif G'huun The Blood God Blood trollBlood troll Blood trolls Deceased
IconSmall Gonk.gif Gonk The Great Hunter,
Lord of the Pack,
Loa of the Hunt
Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear[28]
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Active
IconSmall Shark.gif Gral Loa of the sea Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Active
IconSmall Unknown.gif Grimath Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Active
IconSmall Lynx.gif Halazzi Forest trollForest troll Amani
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[19]
Active
IconSmall Hakkar.gif Hakkar The Soulflayer,
The Blood God,
The Faceless One,
The Loa of Blood
Jungle trollJungle troll Gurubashi
Forest trollForest troll Vilebranch
Active
IconSmall SpiritLeopard.gif Har'koa Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Active
IconSmall Serpent.gif Hethiss Jungle trollJungle troll Gurubashi
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Active
IconSmall Hir'eek.gif Hir'eek Lord of the Midnight Sky Blood trollBlood troll Blood trolls
Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear[25]
Jungle trollJungle troll Gurubashi
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Active[26]
IconSmall Saurid.gif Jani Patron of Scavengers,
the Lord of Thieves,
the God of Garbage,
Master of Minions,
the Keeper of Secrets[29]
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Active
IconSmall Dragonhawk.gif Jan'alai Forest trollForest troll Amani
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[19]
Active
IconSmall FacelessGeneral.gif Kith'ix Jungle trollJungle troll Zan'do's followers Deceased
IconSmall Krag'wa.gif Krag'wa The Huge,
The Terrible
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear[30]
Active
IconSmall Unknown.gif Lakali Loa of knowledge Unknown Cocooned
IconSmall Unknown.gif Lukou Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[citation needed] 
Active
IconSmall Mammoth.gif Mam'toth Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[18]
Cocooned
IconSmall BlackBear.gif Nalorakk Forest trollForest troll Amani
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[19]
Active
IconSmall Pa'ku.gif Pa'ku Loa of the Winds Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Active
IconSmall Hakkar.gif Quetz'lun Loa of cunning Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[18]
Active
IconSmall Rezan.gif Rezan Loa of Kings,[31]
King of Kings,[32]
God of the Hunt[33]
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Deceased[26]
IconSmall PolarBear.gif Rhunok Bear of the North Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[18]
Active
IconSmall Unknown.gif Samedi Loa of the Grave Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear Active
IconSmall Sethraliss.gif Sethraliss Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Sethrak Sethrak
Active
IconSmall Unknown.gif Shango Loa of Storms Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear Active
IconSmall Tiger.gif Shirvallah Jungle trollJungle troll Darkspear[28]
Jungle trollJungle troll Gurubashi
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[34]
Active
IconSmall Serpent.gif Sseratus God of Snakes Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[18]
Active
IconSmall SkeletalWindSerpent.gif Tharon'ja Ice trollIce troll Drakkari
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[35]
Cocooned
IconSmall Direhorn.gif Torcali The Moving Mountain,
The Wandering Bulwark
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Active
IconSmall SeaTurtle.gifIconSmall BabyTurtle.gif Torga Wise and Benevolent Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari
Tortollan Tortollans
Alive
IconSmall Mueh'zala.gif Ueetay no Mueh'zala God of Death,
Father of Sleep,
Son of Time,
the Night's Friend[23]
Sand trollSand troll Farraki Active
IconSmall Devilsaur.gif Xibala Unknown Deceased
IconSmall Zandalari Male.gif Zanza The Restless,
Loa of Zandalar
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari[36] Active

Other loa

Servitors of the loa

In the RPG

Icon-RPG.png This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

All trolls worship a pantheon of primal forces; a sacred animal represents each aspect of the pantheon.[38]

The trolls draw power for their voodoo magics by performing rituals and invoking the Primal Gods, Old Gods,[39] forest spirits, and ancestral spirits: their Loa spirits and gods.

Loa spirits are more powerful than the elementals, but not as powerful as gods.[40] Supposedly, these spirits are mighty entities that grant the faithful extraordinary powers. By calling upon these voodoo spirits, the shadow hunter gains special blessings with which he can combat darkness and help those in need. The abilities granted vary according to the Loa the shadow hunter calls upon.[41] Almost any being who has died and transcended death can be worshiped as a loa, including Forsaken shadow ascendants.

The shadow hunters' faith and communion with the Loa gods grant them shadow and healing magic, and other abilities. Shadow Hunters learn magic that hinders enemies and aids allies, gaining a unique mix of spells that delve into the more occult aspects of the Loa.

The trolls of Zul'Aman worship primal beings they call the Forest Gods.[42]

RPG loa

Items

There are several loa idols, loa-blessed, or other loa-referencing gear items:

Notes and trivia

  • The Zandalari gods empowered King Rastakhan.[43]
  • Loa are referred to as spirit gods.[44]
  • Gurubashi Worshippers prayed to "the Zandalari gods of darkness".
  • A Darkspear unit called loa-singer is a priest.
  • Shadow Hunter Bwu'ja communed with the loa while weaving her garb.[45]
  • The stresses on the land from the Scourge and the death of many gods in Zul'Drak caused the wall between worlds to weaken, and water elementals to emerge at Drak'Sotra Fields.[46]
  • Some loa prefer being the only one worshiped by an individual troll, rather than said troll worshiping multiple at a time.[47] Though this seems to not always be the case.
  • Brittle Chitinous Shoulderpads are etched with loa sigils.
  •  [Empowered Fire Mojo] creates a loa-blessed flame.
  • Krag'wa allowed the spirit of his witch doctor, Zentimo, to live on after death, and join his children.[48]
  • Many aspects of Loa worship in-game are derivatives of or based upon real-world African, African Diasporic, and Amerindigenous peoples and history, or media based on them.
    • Troll loa worship started with the Zandalari practices, much like how West African Vodun is the mother of African Diasporic Voodoo and much of their Lwa.
    • Two in-game loa bear the name of two real-world voodoo loa, Bwonsamdi and Dambala, another two bear the name or name based on real-world Amerindigenous deities, Xibala and Quetz'lun, and another two likely derive their name from the Spanish language world for eagle aguila based on the latin aquila (AH-key-la), Akil'darah and Akil'zon.
    • Many of the animals represented through the loa bear similarity to animal-cultural associations either in comics, mythologies, or otherwise: The Gurubashi worshipping the black panther Bethekk may be a gesture to how the royal tribe in Marvel's Black Panther worships one; the description Shadra bears similarity to Anansi and Spider Grandmother; the Tyrannosaurus that Rezan is based on most commonly lived in North America during the Cretaceous period.

Death

There is contradicting information regarding the deaths of certain loa. Notably, the House of the Lost Loa seems to consider many loa as "lost", gone, or dead, despite some having been shown to return or maintain influence in some form after their death.

  • Hakkar the Soulflayer was originally slain by the Zandalari and the Gurubashi over 1,500 years ago.[49] Yet he recently returned to Zul'Gurub, where he was defeated once more.[50] After his defeat, his cursed heart was banished by the Zandalari which still did not stop him as three years later, during the events of Cataclysm, he was still active from within the spirit realm. He sought to have his avatar summoned into the physical world.[51] Jin'do the Godbreaker attempted to subdue his spirit, but the loa was freed by adventurers, whom he told that he would "deal with [them] another time" before returning them to the physical plane.[52] He was later shown to have passed into Ardenweald.
  • When Mam'toth committed suicide, Har'koa said that there was nothing they could do to bring him back to life.[53] This is because he used his own spirit as a bomb, thus killing his spirit as well as his physical manifestation.
  • Rhunok was sacrificed by his followers during the events in Zul'Drak, but his spirit lived on and appeared to an adventurer, asking them to return to Har'koa and tell her "No matter what, we [loa] are eternal." Har'koa stated that Rhunok would return as his spirit would live on forever.[54] This is most likely also the fate of the other Drakkari loa that did not have their fate mentioned in quests; Akali and Sseratus.
  • Quetz'lun was too sacrificed by her followers. She lived on, and created her own underworld domain where she tortured the followers and high priests that turned on her.[55]
  • Tharon'ja was also sacrificed during the events of Zul'Drak, but his eternal spirit was still called to the Isle of Thunder by the Zandalari years later.
  • There is an ancient sethrak belief that loa can be reborn.[56]
  • Sethraliss' physical manifestation died long ago after sacrificing herself to kill Mythrax. After the battle, her followers "awaited her rebirth". They could still feel her presence, and believed that one day she would be returned to them.[57] She also still possesses an avatar.[58]
  • Shadra was originally killed in Shadra'Alor.[59] Despite this, her spirit remained and was held against her will in Zul'Gurub.[60] In Cataclysm, she was summoned and killed once more.[61] Yet she was still active during the Pandaren Campaign, and communicated with Vol'jin.[62] She was also summoned by the sand trolls who offered her sacrifices.[63] Her high priestess, Yazma, consumed Shadra at her underground temple in the Garden of the Loa.[64]
  • Torga was slain by blood trolls.[65] However, his spirit could still be called upon and interacted with through the help of the loa of the dead, Bwonsamdi.[66] When the tortollans tried to put Torga's spirit to rest, Torga decided to be reincarnated instead.[67]

It was, however, confirmed that the lost loa are not permanently gone and that they could return.[26]

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.
  • From the conversation the player has with Zen'tabra in the troll starting zone, it can be assumed that Gonk either resides in or has access to the Emerald Dream.
  • The author of the  [Blood-Spattered Zandalari Journal] writes how they were tormented by loa, hungry for blood and hate, who talked to them and told them to give up. This likely means that they were not true loa, but sha.
  • The markings on the  [Crumbling Ceremonial Vestments] resemble both the sign of Elune and several venerated loa spirits.[68] This seems to imply that some trolls used to or still do revere Elune as a loa, and may be intended to represent a transition phase between the loa worship of the original dark trolls and the Elune worship of the night elves.
  • It seems likely that most, or perhaps all, talking animal loa are Wild Gods, due to their extreme similarity to established Wild Gods.
  • Though beings can be killed within the Shadowlands are meant to die permanently, with their energy dispersing and joining the greater whole of the magic of Death,[69][70][71] after Hakkar the Soulflayer is killed in the De Other Side Bwonsamdi outright states that he will return. Thus it is unknown if that is something unique to Hakkar himself (as his origins are unknown) or if loa can only be permanently killed from within the wildseed or if this is because the area where Hakkar is encountered is in a version of Zul'Gurub as the map indicates and thus was within reality to some extent, similar to the Manastorm encounter being in Mechagon.

Possible loa

The following beings were never called "loa" but may share similarities with them and thus may or may not be loa:

See also

References

 
  1. ^ a b c d World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1
  2. ^ Blizzard Entertainment Blizzard Entertainment 2018-04-30. Battle for Azeroth Preview: Zuldazar Visitor’s Guide. Retrieved on 2018-05-02.
  3. ^ a b c d e Ask CDev - Round 2
  4. ^ a b c Shadows of the Loa
  5. ^ Zen'tabra gossip text on Echo Isles
  6. ^ Blizzard Entertainment. Shadow Hunter. Archived from the original on 2003-02-20. Retrieved on 2009-10-16.
  7. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 pg. 68
  8. ^ H [10-40] Lurkers
  9. ^ World of Warcraft: The Magazine Volume I Issue IV
  10. ^ H [10-45] Fate of the Horde
  11. ^ H [50] Where He Died
  12. ^ H [50] Shades of Disruption
  13. ^ Mueh'zala yells: It be Mueh'zala who brought Helya to da Jailer's side... struck a deal for ol' Odyn's eye... and made da Banshee warchief with a whisper!
  14. ^ H [10-30] Spirits of the Feralfen
  15. ^ H [10-50] House of the King
  16. ^  [Symbol of Gral]
  17. ^ H [20-50] We'll Meet Again
  18. ^ a b c d e House of the Lost Loa
  19. ^ a b c d N [20-30] Breaking Through Jin'Alai
  20. ^ Priest of Bethekk in Hall of the Lesser Loa
  21. ^ Shadows Rising, pg. 278
  22. ^ H [20-50] The Necropolis
  23. ^ a b c d Tablet of Theka
  24. ^ H [10-50] Mistress of Lies
  25. ^ a b Ask CDev - Round 1
  26. ^ a b c d The Lost Codex 2018-11-03. Blizzcon 2018 Interview: Alex Afrasiabi & Patrick Dawson - Story and Systems | The Lost Codex. YouTube. Retrieved on 2018-11-03.
  27. ^ H [30-50] Wrath of the Tiger
  28. ^ a b Zen'tabra Gossip text
  29. ^ B [10-50] Curse of Jani
  30. ^ Shadow Hunter Narez
  31. ^ Rezan#Dungeon Journal
  32. ^ H [10-50] The Temple of Rezan
  33. ^ Rezan#Zeb'ahari
  34. ^  [The Warmace of Shirvallah]
  35. ^ Summoned at Isle of Thunder by Zur'chaka the Bonecrafter
  36. ^ Zanza the Restless#Quotes
  37. ^ Fetid Devourer#Adventure Guide
  38. ^ Dark Factions, pg. 89
  39. ^ Magic & Mayhem, pg. 22
  40. ^ Magic & Mayhem, 46
  41. ^ Horde Player's Guide, pg. 68
  42. ^ Lands of Conflict, pg. 115
  43. ^ For Council and King
  44. ^  [Akun'Jar Vase]
  45. ^  [Shadow Hunter Garb]
  46. ^ N [20-30] Precious Elemental Fluids
  47. ^ Zen'tabra's dialogue.
  48. ^ H [20-50] The Last Witch Doctor of Krag'wa
    Krag'wa the Huge yells: I bless you with a small portion of my power. Use it to help Zentimo join my children.
    Krag'wa the Huge says: Zentimo has served me well. His spirit will live on among my children.
  49. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 138
  50. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 123
  51. ^ N [20-30D] The Blood God Hakkar
  52. ^ Jin'do the Godbreaker#Quotes
  53. ^ N [20-30] Blood of a Dead God
  54. ^ N [20-30] Back to Har'koa
  55. ^ Quetz'lun#Quotes
  56. ^  [Rebirth Creed]
  57. ^ Vorrik#Quotes
  58. ^ Avatar of Sethraliss#Adventure Guide
  59. ^ B [10-30] Summoning Shadra
  60. ^ High Priestess Mar'li (Classic)
  61. ^ B [10-30] The Eye of Shadra
  62. ^ Vol'jin: Shadows of the Horde
  63. ^ Traveler: The Spiral Path, pg. 332 - 333
  64. ^ Yazma (tactics)#Adventure Guide
  65. ^ H [20-50] Torga, the Turtle Loa
  66. ^ H [20-50] Beseeching Bwonsamdi
  67. ^ H [20-50] Torga's Eternal Return
  68. ^  [Crumbling Ceremonial Vestments]
  69. ^ Wam 2020-09-24. Maldraxxus Deep Dive With Steve Danuser. GamerBraves. Archived from the original on 2020-09-25.
  70. ^ Cass Marshall 2020-09-24. World of Warcraft’s Maldraxxus is the grittiest zone in the Shadowlands. Polygon. Archived from the original on 2020-09-24.
  71. ^ Sybia 2020-09-24. WoW Shadowlands : Interview exclusive de Steve Danuser à propos de Maldraxxus (in French). Millenium. Archived from the original on 2020-09-24.
  72. ^ The Judgment
  73. ^  [Spawn of G'nathus]
  74. ^ N [15-30D] Breaking and Entering
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