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The Queue: Dead serious

Alex Ziebart

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

In today's edition of The Queue we get serious. Dead serious.

@Jamesski86 asked:

are orcs inherently evil? Context: Tides of War

Inherently evil? No. Definitely not. However, the orcs have bred a culture that both encourages and rewards "evil" acts. They celebrate brutality and rally behind whoever spills the most blood. The orcs who have comitted the most heinous acts in the name of strength are their war heroes. They name their cities after those people, cities like Ogrimmar. As much as Thrall talks about peace, he perpetuates the poisonous orc culture of worshiping butchers. Sure, Grom Hellscream had a cool cutscene in his final seconds of life, but Grom was not a good person. Despite that, he told Garrosh that Grom was one of the greatest orcish heroes to have ever lived. Look where that's taking Garrosh.

Orcish culture is poisonous and destructive, but they aren't born that way. It's a societal issue. They're perfectly capable of being "good" if their peers aren't teaching them wrong is right.

tim asked:

What's the twelfth type of archaeology, after vrykul in the third column? It's got me so curious!

It's a placeholder icon. Right now, it's nothing. Absolutely nothing. Come Mists of Pandaria, you'll get two new types of digsites: pandaren and mogu.

The Daily Blink asked:

What is the capital of Assyria?

Well, that's a complicated question! The original capital of Assyria was the city of Assur, for which the kingdom was named. Assur was founded somewhere around 2500 BC, and served as Assyria's capital city until roughly 1800 BC. I need to qualify that a little: Assur served as its capital for much longer than that, but countless rulers decided their new city was the capital, and Assur was old and busted. Inevitably, that ruler would die and Assur would become the capital city again. And even when it wasn't officially considered the Assyrian capital, it was still the unofficial capital in every practical sense. Calling something your capital doesn't necessarily change the original capital's significance in the region. In addition, the region saw a lot of war The Queue Dead seriousAssyria, Babylonia, and all of the other peoples of Mesopotamia spent a lot of time fighting for territory, erecting temples, destroying temples, rebuilding temples, and so on. As I go through this history, imagine that between every single one of these capital flip-flops, Assur spent some time as the officially-unofficial-official capital city again. Got it? Good.

Around 1800 BC, the usurper king Shamshi-Adad, who conquered the entire northern region of Mesopotamia, relocated the kingdom's capital to the newly founded Shubat-Enlil. 500 years later, around 1290 BC, king Adad-nirari relocated the capital of Assyria yet again to Kalhu -- Biblically known as Nimrud, named for Nimrod, a legendary hunter king.

Kalhu didn't last long as the capital of Assyria. After an incident involving some minor raiding and plundering against Babylonian temples, the still-important city of Assur was none too pleased with the actions of its Assyrian rulers. In response to their discontent and noncooperation, then-king Tukulti-Ninurta built a brand new capital city from the ground up, less than five kilometers north of Assur. The name of that city? Kar-Tukulti-Ninurta. Translation: Port Tukulti-Ninurta. It didn't last long. Tukulti-Ninuta's own sons rebelled against him and sacked Kar-Tukulti-Ninurta, dethroning it from capital status.

The capital then flip-flopped a couple of times between Kalhu and Assur, but between 700 and 600 BC, the Assyrian Empire fell into serious, catastrophic decline. King Sin-shar-ishkun, one of the last kings of the Assyrian nation, took the throne after a 3-way civil war sparked by the death of king Ashurbanipal. That civil war caused serious damage to the empire. The Babylonians led a successful rebellion during that time and the outlying colonies stopped supporting the empire entirely. This weakened Assyria enough that a united force of the Persians, the Medes (ancient Iranians), Babylonia, the Scyths, the Kimmerians, and the remnants of Mannea and Elam all teamed up to beat the hell out of the Assyrians. Kalhu and Assur were both lost early on in that war. Assyria briefly founded a new capital in Harran (located in modern Turkey) and then relocated to Nineveh (located in modern Iraq) where it remained for the entirety of Assyria's remaining existence. Both Harran and Nineveh fell as the Assyrian Empire finally collapsed.

So the answer is Assur, Shubat-Enlil, Kalhu/Nimrud, Kar-Tukulti-Ninurta, Harran, or Nineveh, all depending on the timeframe. Assur was the first and Nineveh the last, making those two the most notable capitals of the Assyrian Empire, and thus the cities someone is most likely referring to when discussing the capital of ancient Assyria.

TL;DR: Nineveh.

Thomas asked:

Can we train pet battles yet?


@untamedhellcat asked:

Why is the earth round?

Well, you see ...

Ah, screw it.

Have questions about the World of Warcraft? The WoW Insider crew is here with The Queue, our daily Q&A column. Leave your questions in the comments, and we'll do our best to answer 'em!

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