World of Warcraft (WoW)

Shadowland Realms are mirrored- “as above, so below”. What is the purpose of Brokers and Devourers?

Content of the article: "Shadowland Realms are mirrored- “as above, so below”. What is the purpose of Brokers and Devourers?"

What I found while playing and researching Shadowlands is that there are some similarities between realms seemingly unrelated to one another. After some thinking, I realised that the realms come in pairs, where one of the pair deals with the living realm (above) and the other deals with the realms of death and/or Maw:

The pair are (above/below):





Now to explain the pairs:


  • work on the past life- either redeeming or forgetting it

  • semi-religious- while Bastion is clearly a cult, Halls of Attonement are literally refered to as a "church" in a dungeon journal:

" Within the Halls of Atonement, past the courtyard and gargoyles, is a church unlike any seen on Azeroth. This is where the High Adjudicator Aleez presides over a congregation of spirits, spreading the dark word of Sire Denathrius to the undeserving."

  • Bastion was attacked by the forces of the Void, Ravendreth by the forces of the Light

  • both are in a state of a civil war- in Bastion it seems like loyalists are right, in Ravendreth the rebels are (but I think it's more complicated in both cases)

  • loyalists of Bastion want to keep to their ways, rebels want to change it. Ravendreth is exactly the opposite

  • Denathrius is refered to as the first Venthyr, Kyrestia is literally called "the Firstborne"

  • Kyrian of Bastion are the first denizens of the Shadowlands everyone sees, and if your souls is irredeemable- the Venthyr are the last you see before you're thrown into the Maw

  • Souls who failed on the Path are sent back to the Arbiter. Souls who succeeded in Attonment are also sent back to the Arbiter

  • similiar creatures inhabit both: small workers- (Stewards/Dredgers), artificial constructs (Centurion/Stoneborn) and of course the main residents/rulers of the realm (Kyrian/Venthyr)

  • The Dread Expanse on youtube had a

    that Maw was part of Revendreth once, I have a theory that Bastion constructed Oribos (I'll maybe explain that one in another post), thus completing the pairing


I admit, some points here are a little bit far-fetched

  • both remember and cherish their past lives

  • both are shapeshifters- while the Nigh Fae are able to turn into spirit animals, many houses of Maldraxxus practice corpse-stiching, rituals to change your form etc. It seems like Necrolords can choose what they want to look like- Alexandros, Draka and Lady Vashj looks almost the same they looked on Azeroth, while Amber Kearnen decided to become a spider

  • Venthyr and Kyrian are united by the ideology, while Night Fae and Necrolords are more secular, they seem to just share a common mindset (smoke weed and pet foxes/kill or be killed)

  • it's unclear but it seems that Primus nor Winter Queen weren't the original rulers of their realms. We're told several times that Primus conquered Maldraxxus. With Winter Queen it's not that easy, but it seems that she planted the forest on top of something else- again The Dread Expanse proposed that it's on top of a dead tree. The talking mushroom Marasmius says that at the begining there was only him and Night Queen, but it's possible that HE is the older one, since he remembers last time when Drust attacked and says that NOBODY else remembers it.

  • again with The Dread Expanse theory- while Ardenweald seems to be on top of a dead great tree, he suggest that Maldraxxus is actually on top of a giant beast Primus slew- but the creature is constantly regenerating, causing weird growth all over the realm

  • Maldraxxus and Ardenweald are also 2 of the only realms with giant mushrooms. I'm not sure if this is important

  • while Ardenweald is weak, it's getting attacked by other realms. While Maldraxxus is weak, it's attacking other realms.

  • variety of creatures inhabit both, neither Night Fae nor Necrolords have a set form like Venthyr and Kyrian do.There is also no clear ruling class

  • the giant Tirna trees share some similarity to the Houses of Maldraxxus

  • now I'm going to be more symbolic- Night Fae who attack us wear masks that turn them evil. Without Primus control, Maldraxxus barons cause bloodshed by themselves- they weren't honorable warriors Primus wanted them to be, without him they went mask off

  • reincarnation- it's obviously Night Fae specialty, but it seems like a House of Rituals and Constructs offers a way to reincarnate fallen warriors into.. something.

  • primary purpose of Night Fae is to nurse select souls and send them back to the realm of the living. The purpose of Necrolords is to forge souls into a weapon and send them to defend the land of the death.

  • no, I have no idea how trolls and Da Other Side tie into this, but maybe there is also a sort of a pocket realm in Maldraxxus yet to be revealed?


  • literally a connection between the 2 in the form of the soul conduit thing

  • both are ruled by beings with a hole where a heart should be

  • once Jailer started being active, Arbiter broke

  • both are populated by almost exclusively artificial creatures- Maw has animated suits of armor and metal bear-monsters, while Oribos has attendents which are floating robes with masks and Protectors, which are … animated suits of armor

  • Oribos has a wave pattern on the floor and walls, Maw has literal rivers of souls around it

  • there is a literal passage from one to the other

  • Oribos is clearly an orderly and clean structure, Maw is chaotic and seemingly natural

  • Oribos is a place where souls go first, Maw is the place where (some) sould go last

  • You can get to anywhere from Oribos, you can't get out of the Maw

  • and Oribos is literally above the Maw


Now this one is weird, but hear me out

  • seemingly realmless creatures

  • can freely travel between realms without the help of portals in Oribos, seemingly also able to travel during the Anima drought

  • goal of both is gathering Anima

Let's elaborate on the last point- my theory is that both Brokers and Devourers are meant to get Anima to power the Shadowlands- Brokers get Anima by trading and deposit it voluntarily into a "Sepulcher". Once the Anima reserves are low and trading is not an option, Devourers are sent out to gather it by force. It is also possible they deposit it into the same place.







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