Know Thy Enemy: Portrait of a Thunder King
Pandaria is a land with a history that is both tragic and inspiring. Its people have overcome adversity to become masters of their own destiny. As Pandaria emerges into a changed Azeroth, the surviving mogu stir and begin their plans anew. They crave the domain they once held, and, to regain it, they will sweep usurpers and invaders alike into the dust.
In the upcoming patch, a threat the Pandarens had thought long buried will reemerge in the form of the once powerful mogu leader, Lei Shen. Joined with the power of the Zandalari, the mogu seek to once more exert their dominance over all of Pandaria. It falls once more to the heroes of the Alliance and the Horde to lend their aid in stopping the newly resurrected tyrant and his Zandalari allies.
It's been a long journey since we first set foot in Pandaria. We've met the formidable and resourceful pandaren, made friends (or enemies) with the hozen and jinyu; we've faced the threat of the mantid, and unleashed long buried horrors upon the land in the form of the sha. But, amidst all of this, there was an even more insidious threat to take notice of. Layers upon layers of conflict can be found on the continent, including the situation involving the mogu and their once and perhaps (more frighteningly) future emperor, Lei Shen.
The First Emperor: Lei Shen
The mogu are a power-hungry race whose history is written in the blood of their enemies. In the past, warring clans and kingdoms fought for dominion over parcels of land, each looking to gain the upper hand against their neighbors. That all changed when Lei Shen leveraged his power and cunning to became the greatest of the mogu. Born during the Age of a Hundred Kings, Lei Shen was the son of a warlord and possessed a strength that commanded respect from the other mogu. He went on to do what many thought impossible; he united the mogu kings beneath him and declared himself emperor.
Once united, the mogu swept across Pandaria, conquering and subjugating all of the other races—until he encountered the mantid. The Lorewalkers were diligent in chronicling the history of Pandaria and have this text on record:
The Thunder King
It has been written that when the great Lei Shen first looked upon the lands of the mantid, he did not feel fear, but inspiration.
As he began to unify his people under a single banner and subjugate the other races of Pandaria, he knew that the mantid would never succumb to his authority. They spoke his language, the language of strength. He commanded his slaves to construct the Serpent's Spine, a magnificent wall that spanned the length of the empire.
It would take many generations to build. But Lei Shen knew how to motivate his subjects. Fear. Fear of the mantid moved mountains, raised armies, secured his empire, and built his wall.
It was also Lei Shen who unified the language and built the awe inspiring structures found throughout Pandaria, including the extravagant palaces in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms.
The Future Threat Found in the Past
There is much more to be learned of this great enemy. Even now, the Golden Lotus works to ensure the safety of the Vale of Eternal Blossoms. Within the Valley of Emperors found in Kun-Lai Summit, the danger is readily apparent as the mogu and the Zandalari have long since begun their efforts to raise the Thunder King. If you wish to know more, travel to Kun-Lai Summit, speak with the Golden Lotus, brave Mogu’shan Vaults, and keep an eye on the ongoing research of the Lorewalkers. Arm yourselves with knowledge of your enemy, and you’re sure to rise up victorious, because if you fall, all of Pandaria may fall with you.