"We cannot always change the future, but we can fight to guide it. In doing so, even if we fail, we will have set a path for others to follow."
— Tal Rasha on the nature of mortals(src)
Tal Rasha was a powerful Horadric Mage, and the original leader of the order. He became the host for Baal, Lord of Destruction. Few Sorcerers have been able to reach the same levels of fame that he has.
The Hunt for the Three
The Horadrim were formed at the behest of the archangel Tyrael, given the task to hunt the three Prime Evils that had been banished to Sanctuary. Tal Rasha was made the group's leader. This included the responsibility of inducting recruits.
The Binding of Destruction
"Baal! May this shard be your eternal prison!"
— Tal Rasha after defeating Baal(src)
Of the Three Brothers, Baal was the second Prime Evil found, who took refuge in the city of Lut Gholein for three days. Tal Rasha ordered the Horadrim to wait so that no innocents would be caught in the crossfire. The Horadrim finally confronted Baal after he left the city. Tal Rasha confronted Baal alone before Kulle and the other Horadrim arrived. Together, they were able to incapacitate Baal and use the soulstone against him.
Accounts differ on what happened next. The main account states that during the fight, one of Baal's attacks shattered the sacred soulstone that was supposed to imprison him. Tal Rasha however, subdued the raging demon lord and, gathering the largest of the soulstone's shards, trapped Baal's destructive essence within it. Another states that it was the inability of Zoltun Kulle (another member of the Horadrim) to properly handle the stone in battle, which lead to its breaking.
In truth, the first account appears to be more accurate, as Kulle and Tal Rasha wielded the soulstone together, but Baal shattered it, before escaping through a portal. Tal Rasha teleported after him, while ordering Kulle to lead the Horadrim into the valley below to meet up with him. They found Tal Rasha and Baal locked in mortal combat, and joined the fray. In a second battle against the Lord of Destruction, Baal was subdued, and imprisoned within the soulstone fragment. However, the fragment could not contain Baal's essence forever, and there wasn't enough time to reformulate it.
Tal Rasha was unperturbed, stating that all they had to do was obtain another soulstone. Kulle, annoyed, pointed out that only an archangel's weapon could cleave the Worldstone, and even then, there was no way they could make it to Mount Arreat before Baal escaped. Tal Rasha stated that Tyrael would have answers, and promised Kulle that Baal would not roam free again.
While accounts again differ as to whether it was Tal Rasha or Kulle who made the suggestion, the idea was put forward that a human body might be able to contain the demon's essence by fusing a shard to their body. Unfortunately, the host would be left to wrestle with the demon for all eternity. But an instant later, Tal Rasha stepped forward to volunteer. It was at this point that Tyrael appeared, leading the Horadrim to an old burial chamber. A binding stone with runes of containment was built, and Tal Rasha ordered his brethren to chain him to it. As the mages looked on in sorrow, Tyrael jammed the soulstone shard into Tal Rasha's heart, sealing his fate. Sorrowfully, the Horadrim sealed the chamber and departed.
Legacy of the Damned
"I've heard legends of the Tomb of Tal Rasha, but I thought they were just old tales meant to scare young children."
The Release of Destruction
"When Tal Rasha chose to embody the spirit of Baal, he knew his doom was to wrestle eternally against the will of the greater Evil. Look around you and ask yourself, 'Has the battle been won or lost?'"
The Tomb of Tal Rasha was eventually found by Diablo who, under the guise of the Dark Wanderer, sought to free Baal. By this time Tal Rasha's essence had been consumed by Baal, which also gave the Lord of Destruction insight into Horadric knowledge. As the Wanderer, Diablo entered the tomb, but was confronted by Tyrael. As the two battled, Baal called out to the Wanderer's companion, Marius, begging him to release him. Marius was compelled to do so, and plucked the soulstone from Tal Rasha's chest. This freed Baal, who now had control of Tal Rasha's body. By the time Baal reached Mount Arreat, no trace of Tal Rasha's physical form remained, and his physical form was destroyed as per the destruction of the Worldstone.
Tal Rasha plays an active role during the second Baal fight. He can generate a shield that will protect the player from Baal's fireballs.
The Memory of Tal Rasha is encountered as an NPC as part of the Legacy of the Horadrim system.
Season 14 features Tal Rasha-themed portraits.
Personality and Traits
Tal Rasha was one of the most powerful Mages that ever lived; he had the ability to teleport, could generate shields, and was powerful enough to even hold his own against Baal in single combat. He clothed himself in garments of subtlety and power, like the rest of the Horadrim, but to a greater extent. Fara espoused the opinion that his act of attempting to seal Baal was selfless, but perhaps foolhardy; a similar opinion was shared by Zoltun Kulle, who was exasperated by Tal Rasha's stubborness and naievete.
Horazon considered Tal Rasha to perhaps be foremost among the Horadrim.
- Heroes of the Storm.
- Book of Cain
- Diablo III, Tal Rasha's Grasp
- Diablo Immortal, Legacy of the Horadrim
- Diablo III, Tal Rasha's Unwavering Glare
- Diablo II Manual
- Diablo Immortal, Destruction's End
- 2013-12-08, BlizzCon 2013 – Diablo III Lore and Story Q&A Panel Transcript. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2014-04-21
- Diablo II, The Secret of the Vizjerei, The Seven Tombs
- Diablo II, The Secret of the Vizjerei, Arcane Sanctuary
- Diablo II, The Infernal Gate Intro Cinematic
- Diablo II, Lord of Destruction Intro Cinematic
- The End of Her Journey
- Diablo III, Tal Rasha's Stride
- Diablo II, Horazon's Journal