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"Betrayer. In truth, it was I who was betrayed. Still I am hunted, still I am hated. Now my blind eyes see what others cannot. That sometimes the hand of fate must be forced.."
Voiced by: Liam O'Brien
Class: Demon Hunter (formerly Mage)Illidan is....complicated. Originally the fraternal twin of Malfurion Stormrage, he diverged with his brother, both with his more caustic, arrogant personality and his adept sorcerery. Unfortunately, arcane magic in the Warcraft universe is addictive, and Illidan quickly became dependant upon the powers he wielded. Initially a hero during the invasion of the Burning Legion in Azeroth's ancient past, Illidan spent some time in their service (as a double agent with vainglorious but heroic intentions) and, thanks to a "gift" of Sargeras, had both his eyes seared out and replaced with supernatural vision, gaining a strong understanding of fel magic in the process. When the arcane Well of Eternity was destroyed, Illidan betrayed the night elves by creating a new one with a vial from the old Well, and, in defending himself, killed several of his own people. Since this was seen as endangering the worldnote Illidan was chained beneath the earth for ten thousand years.Understandably, this made him a little bitter.Released to battle the demons during the Third War by his former crush Tyrande Whisperwind, Illidan cleansed the Felwood by absorbing the power of an evil demonic artifact. Now half-demon, he was banished by the night elves and spent much of the Frozen Throne seeking to destroy the Lich King following Kil'Jaeden's order. He failed and was badly injured by Arthas, and fled to his new realm of Outland to escape Kil'Jaeden's wrath, where over the time between Warcraft III and World of Warcraft his last well-intentioned hopes were replaced by megalomania and madness.Illidan is slated to return as a major player in Legion, having been imprisoned by Maiev to have his soul tormented for all eternity. He's resurrected and freed by the Alternate Universe Gul'dan, who seeks his knowledge about the Tomb of Sargeras so he isn't slain like his main universe counterpart. The Demon Hunters he train are going to be playable and associated with the two factions, casting confusion as to his morality and motives at this time, though it has been stated that he is "ready to lead the demon hunters against the Legion".His forces in-game are referred to as 'the Illidari'.
- Abhorrent Admirer: Turns more and more into one for Tyrande as he loses it.
- The Ace: Deconstructed. Illidan believes he is one and this leads him to do rash and flat out stupid things because he thinks he's such an ace that no matter what comes at him, he'll handle with ease. In contrast to his twin Malfurion, who is a Humble Hero considered the strongest Druid ever, Illidan's boasts and actions come across as someone who is desperate to be seen as the ace he thinks he is. He finally snaps when Arthas, currently at close to his weakest while Illidan himself was at the height of his powers, beat him by using intelligence and skill over Illidan's brute force.
- Always Someone Better: Malfurion is constantly shown to be the better person in almost every sense of the word when compared to Illidan. This greatly hurts Illidan since despite loving his twin, he also in a sense hates him because Malfurion is that much more liked, loved, and respected than he ever will.
- Anti-Hero: Type V, He's not remotely heroic, but his ego and obsession with getting praise often leads him to do the right thing for the wrong reasons.
- Anti Hero Protagonist: Illidan was a protagonist in the Night Elves and Blood Elves campaign of Warcraft 3.
- Big Bad Wannabe: Fancies himself the Lord of Outland and was advertised as The Burning Crusade's Big Bad, but is merely a distraction and is ultimately undermined by Kael'thas, who sets up the expansion's true Big Bad, Kil'jaeden and the Burning Legion.
- Black Magic: Illidan's inability to keep off the fel magic is the source of his damnation.
- Body Horror: Along the way, he grew horns and his feet turned to hooves.
- Byronic Hero: Arrogant and cunning, thinks he's heroic. Feels misunderstood. Outcast. Charismatic. Rejected by the woman he loved... more examples?
- Cain and Abel: Him and Malfurion. Slightly reversed, Illidan is younger, but is the 'Cain', while Malfurion is older, yet he is the 'Abel'. They never do trade blows however or try to kill each other.
- Childhood Friend Romance: One-sided version with Tyrande.
- Disabled Means Helpless: Averted and lampshaded: "I'm blind, not deaf!"
- Double Weapon: His iconic warglaives are a pair of curved blades on each end of a hilt.
- Dual Wielding: Wields two large warglaives.
- Evil Sounds Deep: His voice gets quite a bit deeper after he absorbs the Skull of Gul'dan and becomes half demon.
- Eye Scream: Sargeras burned away his original eyes, and replaced them with flames that allowed him to better perceive magical auras. We never get to see him without his blindfold, but in the novels his eyes are described as being surrounded by charred flesh and exposed bone. It's so nasty that it grosses Mannoroth out.
- Eyepatch of Power: An entire Blindfold of Power.
- Fallen Hero: Was a hero in the war against the Burning Legion, but his desire to prove himself and jealousy of his brother drove him to join the Legion to destroy it from within. Then he was imprisoned and freed, only to be forced to work for the Legion again in what caused him to Jump Off The Slippery Slope.
- Fate Worse Than Death: Life imprisonment is already pretty bad, but if you're an immortal...
- Considering what Kil'Jaeden has done to many of his previous pawns, Illidan's assumption of what Kil'Jaeden will do to him qualifies for sure.
- The reason he's come back from the dead is even moreso, as Maiev trapped his soul in the mortal coil to be actively tortured for all eternity until Gul'dan intervened.
- Go Mad from the Isolation: When Maiev calls him out on being insane, his reply is, in a Blunt "Yes" kind of way: "Isolation will do that to the mind."
- Handicapped Badass: He can't see thanks to the Vision of Sargeras yet he's able to sense and feel power thanks to it. In fact, he's stronger blind than he was before.
- Heel–Face Revolving Door: Illidan's ultimate allegiance is to himself and Tyrande.
- Heroic Wannabe: Wants so bad to be the Hero everyone praises and the center of attention, the all-powerful vanquishing hero that saves the day and gets the girl. The fact that Malfurion gets the girl and he gets thrown in a dungeon, then banished, and beaten by someone he thought "beneath" him breaks his psyche completely and he goes cuckoo.
- Hopeless Suitor: To Tyrande. Not that he has ever stopped trying even after knowing that she only has eyes for his brother. One of the sure-fire ways to get Illidan on your side (apart from magic for his addiction) is to promise that your plan will help/impress Tyrande.
- Horns of Villainy: Part of his physical transformation as a half-demon involved growing long, curved horns from his forehead.
- Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Let's just say that he did not take his defeat by Arthas, and the subsequent realization that Kil'jaeden will want to punish him for his failure, very well. At all.
- Killed Off for Real: Up until Legion. Due to his nature as a demon, his soul was trapped in the Twisted Nether, leaving his body imprisoned by the Wardens. Alternate Gul'dan would later revive him.
- Large Ham: When Liam O'Brien is the one voicing him. Besides the memetic "YOU ARE NOT PREPARED!", there's also pretty much every line he says in the Well of Eternity dungeon. Especially "I will be the savior of our PEOPLE! I WILL FULFILL MY DESTINYYY!"
- Love Triangle: Part of this with Tyrande, although really he never had a chance. He likes to think he has a chance, but this only worsens his sanity.
- Magic Knight: Required to be a demon hunter.
- Mr. Fanservice: Half-elf, half-demon, blindfolded, muscular, perpetually shirtless, purple-skinned, winged, clawed, horned, tattooed, definitely interpretable as a woobie.
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: A bit of a stretch, given his apparent madness and lust for recognition, but Illidan's entire life before fleeing to the Outland can be read as this. His repeated (and just relatively successful) attempts at heroism simply don't seem heroic enough for anyone to appreciate them, and so he is ignored, shunned, imprisoned and finally banished despite never actually intending to hurt his friends or allies. He goes off the deep end when exiled, but until then the only unambiguously irredeemable thing he ever does is in a fit of frustration and anger when said allies seemingly prevent him from saving them in the long run.
- Nominal Hero: Illidan ultimately cares most about protecting himself and Tyrande. This often puts him on the side of the heroes, and at least puts him against many of the true villains.
- Pet the Dog: His rescue of Tyrande in "The Frozen Throne" and his promise to always look out for her, no matter what, shortly before he fled to Outland.
- Before he lost what little sanity he had, his interactions with Kael'thas made it clear he wanted to help the young prince and his people.
- Poor Communication Kills: Many examples, though the most obvious is when Malfurion stops him from killing the Lich King because he didn't tell anyone what he was doing - they just felt him performing incredibly destructive magic.
- On the other hand, it's revealed that the magic he was performing would have destroyed the continent of Northrend, and he was doing it because Kil'Jaeden told him to do so. Neither piece of information would have been well received. And, as Uther revealed in World of Warcraft, the death of the Lich King would have been Bad News, even if Illidan hadn't melted the polar icecaps to do it.
- It's a recurring theme with Illidan. In the War of the Ancients he worked as a double agent, pretending to join the Highborne and Legion, then planned to use the Dragon Soul to destroy their portal. The problem was he never told anybody this, so the night elves thought he had really gone rogue.
- In Legion we learn that he was increasing his forces in The Burning Crusade because he was planning an invasion of Argus, but the Alliance, Horde, and Sha'tar only saw him recruiting demons and pumping orcs full of fel blood. Of course, this doesn't excuse the other things he did on Outland, such as enslaving Broken, draining Zangarmarsh, and attacking Shattrath City.
- Protagonist-Centered Morality: Sees himself as the protagonist and has one of these. Of course, given he's a mana-snorting power-hungry half-demon stalker with a fragile ego and 13 eggs short of a dozen, all he ends up as is a sideshow to his own expansion that's killed off to make way for more important events.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: YOU! ARE NOT! PREPARED!!
- The Punishment: Illidan has only grown worse due to his ten-thousand year long incarceration, not better as his kindhearted brother naively hoped.
- Illidan himself realizes this; when Maiev calls him insane in "The Frozen Throne", his immediate response is "Isolation can do that to the mind." If only the other night elves understood that, a lot of tragedy could have been averted.
- Supernatural Gold Eyes: He was born with golden eyes, which among the Night Elves are considered a sign of great destiny. The desire to live up to this destiny is partially how Illidan became so recklessly ambitious in the first place.
- Ironically, golden eyes are actually a sign of druidic potential. Illidan was initially trained by Cenarius together with Malfurion (who had silver eyes at that time, which later turned golden), but wasn't satisfied with the slow progress and picked up arcane magic, for which he also had great potential. Heroes of the Storm actually gave him a skin, where in an Alternate Universe Illidan became a druid and the leader of the night elves, and Malfurion became the Betrayer.
- Tragic Hero: Initially.
- Tragic Villain: When he finally turns into a villain.
- The Trickster: Neither good nor evil. Managed to deceive demon lords and to use their powers for himself (Vision of Sargeras, for example). He was very inventive, too - the first demon hunter, using the powers of his enemies against them. His "gift" for his people (the Well of Eternity and therefore arcane magic) and his hard punishment remind slightly of the Titan Prometheus. Like fire, the arcane can lead to high cultural advantages (The magical kingdom of Quel'thalas was often admired by the mages of Dalaran), but also heavy destruction. For the Night elves, the arcane belongs to the universe, but is far too chaotic to be controlled - a "don't play with the fire"-attitude.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: Sure most demon hunters are, but since he got those wings on his back, he can't wear a shirt anymore.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: The most charitable reading of his actions.
- And also the saddest...
- YOU ARE NOT PREPARED!: Ahem. But he did just say it in the beginning of the trailer, a few times when you fight him, and it has since become his Catch Phrase.
Prince Kael'thas Sunstrider
"The Alliance has failed my people."
Voiced by: Quinton Flynn
Class: MageThe son of King Anasterian Sunstrider, Prince Kael'thas took over leadership of the High Elves after their defeat at the Sunwell at the hands of Arthas and the Scourge. At this time, the High Elves were just learning the true price of their magic addiction; deprived of the Sunwell's energies, they grew lethargic and desperate. Kael'thas promised to find a way to cure the malady, but in the meantime he formed an allegiance with Illidan Stormrage as the latter promised to satiate the Elves' hunger by harnessing the energies of demons themselves. Renaming his people Blood Elves, Kael'thas left them and entered Outland in search of the power to finally cure his people once and for all.His obsession with power led Kael'thas to consort directly with Kil'jaeden the Deceiver, the last undefeated Eredar lord of the Burning Legion. Abandoning Illidan as a lost cause, Kael'thas entered the recently arrived Naaru Dimensional Ship, the Tempest Keep, and began harnessing the magical energy of Outland toward unknown purposes. In the meantime, he sent forces to attack and destroy the rebuilt city of Shattrath, home to the power of the Naaru. These forces betrayed him and formed the Scryers.Under the leadership of the Naaru, the Scryers and Aldor (remnants of the Draenei) eventually drove Kael'thas out of Tempest Keep. However, his plans were not yet undone. Now wholly insane, Kael'thas returned in secret to Quel'thalas and used the power he had gathered in Outland to rebuild the Sunwell, with the objective of summoning Kil'jaeden into Azeroth. Had he succeeded, Azeroth may well have been destroyed, but Kael'thas never lived to see Kil'jaeden's defeat, as he was finally killed by a group of heroes who hunted him down in his final refuge within the Magister's Terrace.
- Addictive Magic: One of the worst examples of what happens when this gets taken too far, he cares more for sating his, and his people's addiction than anything else, and it costs him his sanity.
- Anti-Gravity Clothing: He has three green orbs floating around him called Verdant Spheres and players can loot one for themselves after beating him.
- Aristocrats Are Evil: While Evil and a Prince he cared too much for his dad to be an Evil Prince, as referenced in Arthas.
- Badass Cape
- Better Living Through Evil: The essence of his Face–Heel Turn to the Burning Legion.
- Blond Guys Are Evil
- The Caligula: By the end of the Burning Crusade, Kael'thas had run the name Sunstrider into the ground.
- Calling Your Attacks: "Anara'nel belore!", "By the power of the sun!", "Vengeance burns!", "Velomin ashal!", "I'll turn your world upside down!"
- Came Back Wrong: The side effect of getting revived for Magister's Terrace: Not only he looked horribly grey and looked like an undead, his personality shifted so greatly that he's no longer a Tragic Villain but mere Omnicidal Maniac, it's kind of legit to guess that he's back a mere husk inhabited by a random Burning Legion demon who took parts of his memory and personality, while the actual Kael'thas really died at Tempest Keep.
- Degraded Boss: From the third most difficult raid boss in Burning Crusade to a 5-man dungeon boss in the Sunwell patch. His abilities in that dungeon are even a toned down version of his raid boss abilities.
- The Dragon: To Illidan at first, and then he betrayed him and became Kil'Jaeden's dragon.
- Dragon with an Agenda
- Driven to Villainy: He probably wouldn't have jumped off the slippery slope had Garithos not pushed him. All he wanted to do was serve the Alliance and claim vengeance upon the Scourge; his dark descent only began after he and his people's near-execution and exodus to Outland.
- Drunk on the Dark Side/The Dark Side Will Make You Forget: Thanks to the corrupting influence of fel energy, he abandoned any pretense of saving his people and started down a path of destruction; In fact he ultimately signs on with the same guys who GAVE THE ORDER to destroy Quel'thalas (albeit who are now enemies with Arthas, who actually did it to resurrect Kel'Thuzad).
- Evil Feels Good
- Evil Is Not a Toy: It's not entirely clear if he's assisting Kil'jaeden because he wants to harness his power or if he's completely nuts and has turned into an Omnicidal Maniac.
- Fallen Hero
- Forgot About His Powers: Apparently a simple river can stop a Blood Elf magister.
- General Failure: The least tactically competent of all the player characters in Warcraft III, he mostly relies on others even when he's perfectly capable of doing things himself.
- Heel–Face Revolving Door
- He Who Fights Monsters
- Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: See, this is what Fel Magic does to you, kids.
- Killed Off for Real
- Large Ham: Can he ever stop talking? He even manage a Nothing Can Stop Us Now speech in his dying breath. And he's voiced by Quinton Flynn."This is preposterous! Am I to assault the undead with nothing but sticks and harsh language?"
- Love Triangle: Part of a Type 4 with Jaina and Arthas.
- Old Shame: To the blood elves after the public revelation of his turn to the Burning Legion; the leader of the Reliquary names the continued presence of Kael'thas' statues in Silvermoon City among the reasons for both the Alliance and Horde allegedly looking down on the blood elves.
- Marathon Boss: In Tempest Keep, he sends four advisers after the raid one at a time, then a group of magical weapons, and then sends all four advisers in at once before he even engages the raid himself.
- Not Quite Dead: "Tempest Keep was merely a setback!" Memetic Mutation aside, he's revealed as alive right after you turn in the quest item you get from looting him, and you're also told that he was saved by one of the Legion's priestesses.
- Omnicidal Maniac: Devolves into this.
- Playing with Fire: Vengeance burns!
- Rebel Prince: It's implied he was this in the backstory, preferring to pal around with his friends in Dalaran than embrace his responsibilities as heir to Quel'Thalas.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge
- Sequential Boss: Both in Tempest Keep AND Magister's Terrace.
- Sycophantic Servant: To Kil'jaeden during the Sunwell events.
- Tragic Hero: He and his people were very unjustly treated during the Third War. In the end, all he wanted was his people's safety.
- Tragic Villain: Until his first death in Tempest Keep. After his ressurrection, he discards this completely.
- This Is Your Brain on Evil
- The One That Got Away: Jaina was this to him.
- We Can Rebuild Him: Fantasy version. He wasn't quite dead after Tempest Keep, and Priestess Delrissa managed to save him by shoving a large fel crystal in his chest. It's what's keeping him alive in Magister's Terrace. Though maybe rebuilt wrong...
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Before becoming an Omnicidal Maniac.
- The Wise Prince: In Warcraft 3 (although understandably a bit grumpy).
"Soon we will reclaim the surface world and take vengeance upon the Night Elves."
Class: Sea WitchVashj was the handmaiden of Queen Azshara prior to the War of the Ancients. Loyal to the Queen to the point of obsession, she attempted to assassinate Tyrande Whisperwind when she considered making her the new handmaiden. She was, along with the rest of the Highborne, transformed into a naga by the Old Gods when the Sundering caused a great part of Kalimdor to become submerged by the sea.Ten thousand years later, a period she seems to have spent training her combat skills, she resurfaced as the leader of the naga Illidan summoned as allies. When his plan to destroy Icecrown with a spell failed, she assisted Kael'thas Sunstrider by supporting him with boats and troops, and, when this got him arrested by Garithos, rescued him and recruited him to her cause. The pair then departed to the shattered world of Draenor, where they rescued Illidan from Maiev Shadowsong, who had traced him there, and helped him defeat Magtheridon and gain control over most of the planet. When Kil'Jaeden tracked them down and demanded Illidan to attack the Frozen Throne, she and Kael readily joined him, and, unlike Kael, remained completely loyal after their defeat. She and her troops have since then seemingly focused on draining the waters of Zangarmarsh, storing it in the deepest part of her base for some unknown purpose.
- An Ice Person
- The Archer
- Aristocrats Are Evil
- Batman Gambit: The reason she offered aid to Kael was so that Garithos would arrest him for treason, so that she could recruit him and his people.
- Demoted to Extra: Compared to Illidan and especially Kael'thas, Vashj receives very minimal attention in Burning Crusade. It consists of a directionless plot in Zangarmarsh that goes entirely unresolved and then, seven or eight levels later, of returning to the area and killing her.
- She doesn't even make a cameo appearance in the Arthas novel, despite having helped lead the failed Illidari campaign in Northrend.
- The Dragon: To Illidan, she is deeply loyal to him.
- Dragon with an Agenda: She's trying to drain the water from Zangarmarsh, but no one knows why.
- Expy: Lady Vashj can be seen as one to Dechala the Denied One from Warhammer Fantasy. Both were elven nobles, transformed into multi-armed Snake People, with the help of chaotic deities(The Chaos God Slaanesh for Dechala, The Old Gods for Vashj). Although one could say the status of expies of Dechala, could be extended to the whole Naga species...
- Flunky Boss: The second phase of her battle involves dealing with four different types of adds while disabling her shield.
- Gorgeous Gorgon
- Green-Eyed Monster: Towards Tyrande, regarding Azshara.
- Hellish Pupils: Oddly, she had them allready as a Highborne Nigh Elf, but lost them after becoming a Naga, her eyes after transformation being depicted as Gold (in Frozen Throne) or Red (in The Burning Crusade) Glowing Eyes of Doom.
- Killed Off for Real
- Last Name Basis: Originally thought to have Only One Name, but in Cataclysm, it's revealed that her mother's name was Lestharia Vashj. No one has referred to her by or even mentioned her first name.
- Mage Marksman: Equally skilled with a bow and frost magic.
- Making a Splash
- Petting Zoo People: Half snake, half elf, and her hair is made up of snakes.
- Shock and Awe: Has some lightning abilities in World of Warcraft.
- Undying Loyalty: Towards Queen Azshara, with Vashj's last words being an apologny to Azshara for failing her.
- Yandere: As noted in The War of the Ancients, is one at least up to a level towards Azshara. Lady Vashj there even tries to kill Tyrande out of jealousy, fearing to lose the position of Azshara's favored.
"We Draenei have fought the orcs and their demon masters for generations. Now, at last, we will end their curse forever."
Class: ShamanFormerly a priest at the Temple of Karabor on Draenor, like many of the draenei, he was turned into a Broken after the orcs' attempt of wiping out the draenei. Leading the Ashtongue tribe of Broken, Akama allied himself with Illidan's forces to defeat Magtheridon, who ruled Outland from the former Temple of Karabor, currently known as the Black Temple. However, Akama realized that the Temple had only traded one evil master for another. Akama has been patiently waiting for a chance to betray Illidan and end his supposed rule over Outland.Years after Ilidan's death, a player Warlock returns to the Black Temple on the trail of the Council of Black Harvest. Akama ambushes the player, but upon recognizing him/her agrees to allow the player to hunt down the Black Harvest within the temple.Akama is confirmed to appear Warlords of Draenor as a normal Draenei.
- Body Horror: What he suffered through as shown in the Black Temple trailer.
- Dual Wielding: Of Kamas
- Enemy Mine: The only reason he allied with Illidan's forces, though now he's stuck with them.
- Good Shepherd: Before the orcs
- In the Hood
- Magic Knight
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: This is the only remnant of his original appearance as a Lost One..
- Rebel Leader
- Retcon: Was originally a Lost One, as were all Draenei in Warcraft III. In the Burning Crusade, Akama was depicted as having been one of the newly introduced Broken since his first meeting with Illidan, albeit with the distinctive mouth of a Lost One. Interestingly, the Burning Crusade era artpiece, ''Foes Of Outland''◊ has Lost One Akama in the background.
- Reverse Mole: The Shade of Akama fight is basically done to eliminate the last hold Illidan has on him, thus enabling his betrayal.
- Sinister Scythe: Wields a pair of kamas as his weapons.
- Supporting Leader: In the Black Temple raid.
- Zen Survivor