The Alliance: Stormwind (Humans) - Lordaeron (Humans) - Gilneas (Humans/Worgen) - Kul Tiras (Humans) - Other Human Kingdoms - Ironforge (Dwarven Clans) - Gnomeregan (Gnomes) - Quel'Thalas/Telogrus Rift (High Elves and Void Elves) - Darnassus (Night Elves) - The Exodar (Draenei) - Tushui (Pandaren) - Vindicaar (Lightforged Draenei) - Mechagon (Mechagnomes)
The Horde: Orgrimmar (Orcs) - The Darkspear Tribe (Trolls) - Thunder Bluff (Tauren) - The Forsaken (Undead) - Quel'Thalas (Blood Elves) - Bilgewater Cartel (Goblins) - Huojin (Pandaren) - Thunder Totem (Highmountain Tauren) - Suramar (Nightborne) - Zandalari Empire (Zandalar Trolls) - Voldunai (Vulpera) - Other (non-playable races)
Other factions: The Old Horde/Iron Horde | The Scourge | Sylvanas and her followers | Knights of the Ebon Blade | Illidan and his followers | Garrosh's Horde | Pandaria | Other mortals | The Void (The Old Gods) | The Light | Eternals | Shadowlands (Death) | The Titans (Arcane) | The Burning Legion (Fel) | The Dragonflights | Wild Gods
Individual media: Warcraft III Heroes | Film characters | Hearthstone characters | Warcraft characters in Heroes of the Storm (Assassins - Warriors - Support)
"Adventurer" is the lore name for player characters in World of Warcraft. They are also referred to as champions, heroes, commanders, and later generals. Although unnamed and numerous, it is thanks to these brave individuals that numerous worlds have been saved on numerous occasions in recent and past times.
Like any game, the playable characters in WoW have their own tropes as well. It must be pointed out that certain tropes apply only to playing your character in certain ways. It should also be pointed out that Blizzard had been blurring lines between good and evil in many occasions and some tropes may apply to certain situations more subjectively than others.
Please DO NOT add any alignment tropes due to the game being a sandbox RPG game.
- The Alleged Boss: In Legion, technically they are the heads of their respective classes, they are still sent on missions that should be done by subordinates.
- Ambadassador: You are the representation of your nation and your homeland in Azeroth.
- Ascended Extra: Despite being the player characters, the role of the adventurers were limited to being simply Elite Mooks and had no real importance. After Cataclysm, they began to gain more importance to the point of being considered the greatest saviors of Azeroth.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Through the PvP system, you can gain ranks from Private to Grand Marshal in the Alliance and Grunt to High Warlord in the Horde, depending on your number of victories in Rated Battlegrounds. It was even more so before when to gain the highest ranks you had to have the largest amount of honor at the end of a week, and then you had to keep killing just so you could keep it.
- And then in Warlords of Draenor, you're made Commander of a garrison in Draenor. After the garrison is completely upgraded, you're promoted to the rank of General.
- In Legion, the Alliance and Horde get wrecked by the Burning Legion. Whatever forces remain decide to fight each other instead of the Legion to the point of lethal stupidity. Because of this, most of the neutral class factions cut ties with the major factions and because of your legacy and credentials, they all unanimously agree that you should be the one in charge, making you the de-facto leader of your entire class.
- In Battle for Azeroth you represent your entire faction as you work to recruit the Zandalari and the Kul Tirans into the Horde and Alliance respectively. Furthermore Warchief Sylvanas includes the Speaker of the Horde (you) in a meeting with the other leaders of the Horde.
- Back from the Dead: Which is one of the reasons why the players could overcome anything: THEY. JUST. CAN'T. DIE.
- This point is noted by Illidan during the Demon Hunter starting experience if the player commits suicide to open a portal. He notes that they had an immortal soul, just like his.
- Notably, a quest in Bastion reveals that the reason the Kyrian* keep telling you that 'it's not your time' is because the player characters fight the good fight and are able and willing to continue fighting against foes who would upset the balance between life and death. Their methods might be dubious, but the ends - to the Kyrian - justify the means.
- Back-to-Back Badasses: When two of you team up.
- Badass Adorable: Playing as a Vulpera, a female Gnome, or a female Pandaren is the easiest path to this.
- Badass Army:
- Armies of Legionfall, a coalition formed by members of all the class orders.
- Any guild that specializes in high performance/professional PVP or PVE and delivers can qualify.
- Badass Bookworm: Mages and Warlocks.
- Badass Cape: Most of the capes in end game are elaborately woven and are often knee-length.
- Badass Crew: When you team up for a dungeon or a raid.
- Badass Long Robe: For casters most of the times.
- Bad Boss: You're occasionally sent to execute your own soldiers for failing, such as killing captives taken by the Scarlet Onslaught in Dragonblight.
- Beware the Nice Ones: You can be a paragon of goodness who helps out orphaned children and old men with mundane tasks while being responsible for taking the names of some of the most powerful beings in Azeroth.
- Beware the Quiet Ones: The adventurers don't often say much other than a handful of written dialogue. They're also part of the reason Azeroth still stands.
- BFS: Some endgame swords are almost as large as your character, yet sometimes you wield them with one hand
- Bishōnen: Male Blood Elves and Void Elves fall into this territory. This being World of Warcraft, they're more muscular than average for this trope.
- Cast Herd: In a raid, adventurers are divided into multiple parties of five to serve a united purpose. For example, the tank in a dungeon becomes an entire party of tanks in a raid, typically consisting of a main tank and several off-tanks, optionally with supports to provide class-specific defensive buffs. This structure can repeat up to eight times for a total of forty adventurers, turning lone heroes into an army.
- The Chick: Of the Horde's Five-Man Band in Pandaria, choosing to ally with the local Hozen rather than fight them.
- The Chosen One: Questing involves the player fulfilling a variety of prophecies.
- Combat Pragmatist: While most particularly applying to the Rogue class, several others involve decidedly unfair tactics. Class abilities aside, some quests can involve rather unscrupulous methods to achieve victory.
- Commanding Coolness: The adventurer is made commander of a garrison in Draenor, in Shadowmoon Valley for the Alliance and in Frostfire Ridge for the Horde.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Goblins as a collective fall under this, but especially if you're playing as a Goblin. You belong to the silliest and most self-destructive faction within the Horde... and have no trouble going toe-to-toe with Azeroth's most formidable threats.
- Cutscene Incompetence: Occasionally crops up, though is sometimes more justified by facing off against a particularly powerful enemy.
- Damager, Healer, Tank: Classes are able to choose a talent after level 10 which fits in one of these categories.
- Determinator: It doesn't matter how many times they get knocked down; at any time, they could simply stop fighting, call it quits, decide to shuffle off the mortal coil and go to the Shadowlands for their afterlives; but regardless of species, allegieance, and class, one thing unites every Adventurer: They keep getting back up.
- The Dreaded: The exploits of Azeroth's heroes are so astounding that Alternate Gul'dan actually abandons his plans to defect from the Legion, after realizing that would leave him all alone against a whole planet of the same heroes who slew Archimonde. Yes, villains are now being characterized as fearing the players.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Occasionally played straight as expansions go on, but mostly averted. At the beginning of the Northrend campaign, your skills in battle are acknowledged by several Non Player Characters. By the time you reach Mists of Pandaria you're personally sent to Pandaria as part of an elite team by your faction, and in Warlords of Draenor you're hand picked by Varian/Vol'jin to lead forces in Draenor, and are openly regarded as the best chance the Alliance/Horde have of defeating the Iron Horde. In Legion your accomplishments are widely acknowledged and you're promoted to the leader of your class in recognition of your power and skills.
- Escaped from Hell: In Stormheim, the player character is banished to Helheim to prevent them from claiming the Aegis of Aggramar. Despite that, they outsmart Helya and free themselves as well as a contingent of Valarjar shieldmaidens. Helya is none too pleased.
- Does this again in Shadowlands, as they are sent into the Maw and probably are the first soul to ever escape that realm, earning them the title of the Maw Walker amongst the denizens of the Shadowlands.
- Everyone Has Standards: No matter how ruthless an adventurer is, they cannot harm humanoid children. Not even children from the other faction.
- FaceHeel Turn: If the Horde champion takes the Sylvanas loyalist path, your character sticks by her side as she commits more and more heinous actions and the Horde starts to disown her. Even after she's removed from power as Warchief, your character proves more loyal to her than they do to the Horde - even after she explicitly reveals herself to be a servant of a death god who wants Horde, Alliance, even N'zoth, to be sacrificed to it for power. Earlier, you could also choose to not have the Gift of N'zoth expunged, effectively putting you on the fast-track to serving N'zoth directly, though the payoff for this decision has yet to appear.
- Famed In-Story: Lower down the levels your fame is typically smaller and more local in scope. As you progress up the levels and perform more epic feats, you become widely acknowledged as a hero.
- In Legion NPCs in your Order Hall tell each other what sound like Chuck Norris facts about the player such as killing Ragnaros twice or taking down Deathwing with nothing but a pair of daggers. Notably, they're all true.
- Five-Man Band: The maximum number of players in a dungeon group.
- Four-Star Badass: By the time your garrison is completely upgraded, Varian or Vol'jin promotes you to the rank of General.
- Frontline General: As Commander of your garrison in Warlords of Draenor, you spend a lot of time on the front lines crushing opponents while your garrison teamwork on supporting you. This doesn't change when you reach level 100 and get a promotion to General.
- In Legion you lead a faction consisting of your entire class (Ebon Blade for Death Knights, Earthen Ring for Shamans, etc) but are still fighting on the front lines even more than your own soldiers.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: A heroic variant (Or anti-heroic, or villainous, depending on your class and RP preferences). Most races and classes start as a small-time apprentice, and as you quest you gain recognition and reputation. In low level zones, you're a mercenary or just a normal explorer, people don't know your name and sometimes even treat you like a nobody. At high levels, you're considered a champion of your faction, having seen a lifetime of warfare and felled many evils, and are heralded as a savior of Azeroth.
- Notable exceptions are the Death Knight and the Demon Hunter. Death Knights were already noted to be heroes of their respective races before their reanimation, while Demon Hunters invade a demonic world as their starting quest line.
- Gameplay and Story Segregation:
- The game treats Death Knights and Forsaken as Humanoids, since classing them as Undead would lead to an inherent disadvantage in PvP. Similarly, Demon Hunters are "more Demon than Hunter" now in lore, but retain Humanoid classification (until transformed).
- The power of adventurers compared to their class and racial leaders, most adventurers are supposed to be at the same level as people like Thrall or Illidan (In Legion), but in Gameplay they are still much weaker than even the weakest racial leader.
- Within gameplay, all classes are intended to be roughly equal in power for balancing reasons, though some are better than others in specific situations, such as facing multiple enemies. Which means that Badass Normal classes such as Warriors and Rogues are as powerful as classes like Druids, Mages, and Shamans. Of course, without this, this would make several classes unviable.
- Glacier Waif: Some of the character models (like female Blood Elves and male Trolls) are quite slender. That doesn't stop them from being effective as Death Knights or Warriors.
- Inverted with burly-looking casters such as male Orc Warlocks or male Draenei Mages.
- Heroic Comedic Sociopath: While ultimately a hero, they will sometimes do things that are morally questionable and clearly only causing trouble not because they were fooled, but because they simply need to do something to keep busy no matter what it is and that was just the first thing to be offered. One such thing being willingly ignoring their better judgement about destroying Kel'thuzad's phylactery in favor of selling it specifically because the hero doesn't actually care whether or not he returns so long as they get rewarded for killing him however many times it takes. Reaches a peak in Cataclysm, where they give themselves three separate quests to kill a specific type of enemy the moment they kill one of it, rationalize it to themselves in a circular manner, and decide to reward themselves for the act.
- Heroic Willpower: This is even an actual ability in certain quests and boss encounters.
- Homeless Hero: The player characters have no home to speak of - a fact lampshaded by the little Draenei ghost Uuna at one point during the "world tour" you take her on:Uuna: Do you live here? Come to think of it... do you live anywhere?
- Horrifying Hero: Forsaken, being literal rotting corpses with a very dour and sarcastic disposition, and Void Elves, who tap into terrifying, sanity-rending powers and are implied in voice lines to barely be holding themselves together, will both be just as heroic as an NPC of any of the more bog-standard kind races.
- Hope Bringer: In some cases, all you need to do is be there to inspire the NPC warriors.
- Hypercompetent Sidekick: A common feature of questing, though sometimes it gets inverted with the player playing fairly minor roles, or being saved instead.
- Infinity +1 Sword: In Legion, they get their hands on several artifact weapons of great fame and power to deal with the Burning Legion, like the Scythe of Elune, the Ashbringer, the Doomhammer, and others.
- Informed Attribute: In Legion, many adventurers are described as being as powerful as racial leaders (and Illidan), but due to the nature of the gameplay, that is never reflected.
- In the End, You Are on Your Own: In general, adventurers are Azeroth's last bastion of hope against the various forces threatening it, with the only other faction having an interest in Azeroth's survival being the powerful, but absent Titans. The Titans have been dead for eons, killed by Sargeras. For all this time, Azeroth's defenders have been the only thing keeping the planet standing.
- Any content specifically designed to be a solo challenge falls into this trope, such as the questlines in Classic for Benediction/Anathema for priests and Rhok'delar for hunters. Even if they wanted to, other players can't help you because doing so will spawn a powerful NPC called the Cleaner who will promptly dispatch them. Other examples include the green fire questline for warlocks in Mists and the mage tower artifact challenges in Legion.
- Legendary in the Sequel: Well, in the Expansion, but, upon touching Northrend in Wrath of the Lich King, one of the first things players are treated to is a standing ovation, being treated as great heroes.
- Living Legend: By the end of Mists of Pandaria you'll be really famous, where after having completed the legendary quest you even receive the title of Legend of Pandaria, and it's mentioned that your exploits will be recounted for generations.
- Magnetic Hero: Several quests even involve inspiring other NPCs using this.
- Major Injury Underreaction: Unless your HP runs out.
- Mana: Prior to Legion, all spellcasters in game used this as a main resource. Following, it's primarily used by Mages, Warlocks, and healers.
- The Medic: For all healing specs.
- Memetic Badass: Your badassness had been confirmed and often reminded of by Non Player Characters in game.
- The Mole: There are quite a few quests where you infiltrate an enemy faction.
- Mugging the Monster: Many of the NPCs you encounter will think they stand a chance against you. It doesn't usually work out well for them.
- Named Weapons: Players could equip named weapons ever since the beginning of WoW, but Legion has now brought artifact weapons, which are the only weapons players can get in the entire expansion. Each spec of each class has one, with a name and much legendary background behind it. Upgrading them actually represents a huge chunk of the players' activity in Legion.
- Odd Friendship: There's a staggering variety of factions and NPCs you can befriend, particularly ones that start at Hated or Unfriendly.
- One-Man Army: For the arrival of Legion, they are considered the best warriors in all of Azeroth.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Particularly when other characters speak voiced dialogue, for obvious reasons. However, even in text you're still often referred to as hero, champion, adventurer, and so on.
- Player Character: These are the characters that players can choose to play the game.
- Power Glows: Most of 'em.
- Powers Do the Fighting: Essentially all DPS caster classes.
- The Quiet One: Dialogue options imply that your character can speak, and you can invoke emotes to hear your character's voice, but they never speak in any cutscenes or directly to enemies. Your character's reaction to being ambushed by the broken Titan, Aggramar, is simply to slowly draw your weapon as you're surrounded by flames.
- Schrödinger's Player Character: The adventurer is described as a unique and important character, even when there are plenty of other players nearby.
- Sociopathic Hero: The player character will do anything for anyone who puts a yellow exclamation point over their heads. For the sake of loot, cash and other rewards, the player characters commit or participate in murder, assault, theft, assassination, slavery, kidnapping, poaching endangered species, animal cage fighting, betrayal, treason, infanticide, a bit of genocide, desecration of human(oid) remains, unsealing ancient horrors and countless other crimes. Fortunately, things usually tend to work out in the end.
- Squishy Wizard: Most cloth-based spellcasters can't take a punch in the face very well.
- Strong as They Need to Be: Their power within the plot seems to vary a lot, sometimes fights can survive against beings like Archimonde, Deathwing and Kil'Jaeden and other times they are caught by an anonymous group of nagas.
- Suddenly Speaking: During the Uldum quest line when Commander Schnottz accuses the player character of trying to assassinate him, they respond with a "But..." before being interrupted. This is the only time they have been shown to speak in an in-game cutscene.
- Took a Level in Badass: Essentially you get more and more badass by leveling up, unlocking more powers and gaining better gear.
- Try to Fit That on a Business Card: The number of titles you can accrue borders on the somewhat insane. In fact, one of the titles you can get is actually The Insane.
- Unwitting Pawn: It's not uncommon for a questgiver to manipulate an Adventurer to their own ends. The biggest examples yet come from Battle for Azeroth.
- Xal'atath tricks the Champion into bringing three relics to the Crucible of Storms. She claims that she's helping you prevent the Naga from using them to create a superstorm as a weapon. In reality, bringing the relics stirs N'Zoth to action, who frees Xal'atath to wander the universe unopposed while he brands the Champion as his "chosen" to begin his return.
- Later, Queen Azshara then leads the Champion to confront her at the foot of N'Zoth's prison. As Jaina and Lor'themar realize, she lured everyone to her because the Heart of Azeroth, possessed by the Champion, is the component needed to free N'Zoth from his bonds. In the end, the Old God is let loose on the world once more.
- In Shadowlands, Sire Denathrius manages to keep the Maw Walker on his side for a time, using them to deal a powerful blow against the rebellion and ousting the Accuser from the Halls of Atonement, instating the Lord Chamberlain in her place.
- Villain with Good Publicity: In Battle for Azeroth, Horde players are given an option to be a loyalist to Sylvanas Windrunner, siding with her over the more heroic Varok Saurfang. As a loyalist, Sylvanas intentionally keeps you away from doing any of the Horde's more underhanded jobs because she wants to maintain your "golden reputation" for her purposes.
- We Do the Impossible:
Grommash: They will defy you. I have seen their forces in battle. They are fearless. It does not matter what vile creatures you summon to the battle, they will persevere. Their resolve is unbreaking. They will come, they will fight, and they will wash their blades of your blood in victory!
- The player characters overcame impossible odds and put some of the worst villains in-universe back into their place (two Old Gods, Onyxia, Nefarian TWICE, Hakkar the Soulflayer, Ragnaros TWICE, Kel'thuzad, Al'akir, Illidan Stormrage, the Lich King, Deathwing the Destroyer, Lei-shen, an Old God-empowered Garrosh, Gul'dan, Archimonde, Kil'jaeden TWICE, Argus the Unmaker, G'huun, Gorak Tul, and countless others, and countless more to follow.)
- No one ever managed to escaped the Maw. Then the Maw Walker happened.
- Would Hurt a Child: The adventurer is often sent to slay the children of intelligent races, including those like dragon whelps. One quest giver in the Twilight Highlands acknowledges that asking you to kill some black whelps would be morally questionable and asks you to simply follow them back to their mother instead. On a more minor scale, the protagonist may also be sent to harass but not kill the children of more humanoid races in order to bait our their parents.
Introduced in original World of Warcraft
Roles: Tank, Healer, Melee DPS, Caster DPS.
Druids are the scholars of nature, tirelessly monitoring and preserving the balance of nature, seeking wisdom and teachings of Mother Nature herself. With enough experience, a druid is able to harness the vast and unforgiving side of nature, unleashing its raw life energies upon enemies, burning them with concentrated solar flame, scorching them using the light of the moon, raining celestial fury over them from great distances, binding them with enchanted vines, ensnaring them in unrelenting cyclones or maiming them by transforming into huge, fearsome beasts.
Druids can also direct this power to heal wounds and restore life to fallen allies. They are deeply in tune with the animal spirits of Azeroth. This flexibility allows them to fill different roles during their adventures, tearing enemies to shreds one minute and surveying the battlefield from the sky the next, making them an invaluable ally at all times.
Most druids nowadays belong to an inter-factional organization known as the Cenarion Circle, a para-militaristic research group dedicated to the studying and preservation of nature. Druids play different roles in different cultures: Night Elves and Tauren, both claiming to be the first to receive Cenarius' teachings, hold their druids with high esteem and elder members act as sages and politicians within their respective societies; The people of Gilneas had practiced nature magic to help growth of crops and act as wandering healers; the Trolls, having deep connections with their loa, shift into the forms of their patron gods to compliment their natural ferocity, and the Kul'Tirans have members of the Thornweavers, a discipline of death-themed Druidism practiced by the Drust, having been kept alive by the last living Drust elder who turned on his kin and sided with mankind.
The Cenarion Circle also served as the the Druid's class order during the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, operating out of the secluded Dreamgrove in Val'Sharah.
- Animal Motifs: Can transform into many different animals.
- Animorphism: Druids' shapeshifting capabilities, stemming from their connection to the Wild Gods.
- Bears Are Bad News: Guardian druids shapeshift into a massive bear to take huge amounts of damage.
- Green Thumb: Many druid spells involve the manipulation of plants.
- Healing Hands: Restoration druids are adept in channeling the powers of nature into soothing healing powers to heal allies.
- In Harmony with Nature: Druids dedicate their lives to studying the ways of nature and preserving its balance. Most of them live in close resonance and are mostly field researchers.
- Druid is the only class to have specializations that fit for all roles in the game: Tank (Guardian, with the Bear form), Melee DPS (Feral, with the Cat form), Ranged DPS (Balance, with the Moonkin form) and Healer (Restoration).
- All Druids have access to special talents that grant them a 'sub-spec' in one of the other specializations. For example, a Feral Druid with access to healing abilities, or a Balance Druid that can turn into a bear for extra defenses when needed.
- Lunacy: Standard for all druids is the power to focus moonlight into searing attacks.
- Morphic Resonance: Most of the Druid's important shapeshifts share traits with their humanoid form; Night Elf forms tend to be shades of purple with elf ears and crescent moon markings, Tauren have brown forms with horns (or Antlers in the case of High Mountain), Worgen tend to be grey with canine features and Dark Spear Trolls are wildly colored. Kul'tiran humans have a totally unique form based on wicker beasts while Zandalari Trolls morph into reptiles.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Fangs of Ashamane, two daggers for Feral druids formed from the teeth of the panther Wild God.
- Claws of Ursoc, two fist weapons for Guardian druids, once wielded by one of the bears Wild God siblings.
- Scythe of Elune, a scythe-shaped Magic Staff for Balance druids with powers tied to the Worgen curse.
- G'Hanir the Mother Tree, a Magic Staff for Restoration druids, formed from a branch of the first world tree used to create the Emerald Dream.
- Nature Hero: Druids are the students, servants, and preservers of nature. They spend years studying and communing with nature, able to understand the workings of the great outdoors and in turn, manipulate and shape nature to their will.
- Necessary Weasel: Feral druids do a large amount of their damage from dots (damage-over-time) that are collectively called bleed effects. Mechanicals, elementals, solid stone golems, all sorts of beings that shouldn't even have an analog to blood can all somehow bleed to death, despite how little sense it makes, as to go without bleed effects would severely impact the druid's ability to do damage, or at least force a drastic change in how they fight against different opponents.
- The Owl-Knowing One: The Moonkin form, a strange owl-like beast that improves the druid's casting abilities.
- Panthera Awesome: Feral druids specialize in shapeshifting into a large feline predator to tear enemies apart.
- Plant Person: Restoration druids possess the ability to shapeshift into a tree.
- The Power of the Sun: Balance druids also call upon the power of the sun in conjunction with their lunar magics.
- Spirit Advisor: The druids have strong connections with the beings of the Emerald Dream, from wisps to the feral gods, and they often seek guidance from these spirits.
- Star Power: Balance druids are unique in their ability to call upon stellar magic, fusing solar and lunar magic to devastating effect.
- Talking to Plants: Druids possess the ability to commune with the nature spirits within plants, either to monitor the status of nature within the area or to serve as a crude method of scouting.
- Travel Transformation: They can transform into a cheetah or stag for overland travel, a seal for underwater, or a bird for flying.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Druids' mastery of the workings of nature allows them to shapeshift into incredible beasts, significantly improving their martial prowess and enabling them to combat like an animal.
- Weather Manipulation: With the ability to control forces of nature, a druid can unleash relentless hurricanes and cyclones.
- When Trees Attack: Balance druids have a talent that allows them to summon a handful of treants to attack enemies.
Roles: Ranged Physical DPS, Melee DPS.
From long ago since the birth of civilization the mysteries outside the walls of great cities called upon those with a restless heart, promising a life of discovery and adventure. Seeking to see these promises fulfilled, these adventurers left the comforts of their homes to leave for an unforgiving primal world. Those who did not succumb to the dangers of nature became hunters, masters of their environment. Armed with bow, crossbow, rifle, or perhaps something a bit more savage, these swift warriors lurk in the deep of the bushes, watching and stalking their prey as they plan to deliver the perfect ambush.
In modern days, hunters and ranged combat personnel act as scouting forces in the military. Hunters are one of the few classes that is accessible by all races, and for Hunters, each race has a unique history with the craft. Frostwolf Orcs are known for being natural Beastmasters, fighting alongside their loyal wolves for their entire history. Trolls and Tauren invoke the nature of their primal gods, stalking the jungles and plains with their spears while befriending the beasts of the wild. Night Elves and Blood Elves, combined with their peerless skill in marksmanship, have kept vigil over Azeroth's forests for centuries.
During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, Hunters from numerous different factions were summoned to the Trueshot Lodge, located atop Talon Peak in Highmountain. There, they rallied to the banner of the reformed Unseen Path.
- Abnormal Ammo: Hunters could fire venomous barbs, magical projectiles, explosive ammunition and armor-piercing power shots.
- Animal Motifs: Hunters have various Aspect abilities which grant them bonuses based on animals. While Aspects were Adapted Out for a time, they make a return in Legion, with various Aspects granting the Hunter boons fitting of the Aspect's animal. Aspect of the Eagle allows Survival Hunters to use their main melee ability from range, granting great utility. Aspect of the Cheetah grants the Hunter a short burst of speed that decays over time. Aspect of the Turtle maintains a defensive stance where the Hunter doesn't attack, but deflects all incoming attacks. Aspect of the Wild, for Beast Mastery Hunters, grants both the Hunter and his pet increased critical strike chance and grants them both Focus over time.
- Noble Bird of Prey: Survival Hunters are specifically themed after the eagle. Aspect of the Eagle is a major utility cooldown that allows them to fight completely from range for a short period, and they have the Birds of Prey talent, which augments their Coordinated Assault cooldown.
- Arbitrary Minimum Range: Prior to Mists of Pandaria, every hunter used a ranged weapon and a melee weapon in case an enemy reached a hunter's melee range. Yet, it had caused gameplay issues and later the hunters can only use ranged weapons, subverting this trope. As a result, hunters can no longer use melee weapons effectively as other classes, until Legion for Survival hunters.
- The Beastmaster: Perhaps one of the most unique things about Hunters is their special ability to tame nearly any animal. From savage raptors to noble wolves, a Hunter is incomplete without their loyal companion. Beast Mastery Hunters specialize in the beast, gaining the ability to tame Exotic Beasts, which are more spectacular and magical than regular beasts, and having access to a talent that permits them two pets instead of one. Survival Hunters also get a unique take on the trope, fighting in melee tandem with their pet to work together, revealing weaknesses for the other to exploit.
- Marksmanship Hunters can subvert this trope. While they have access to a pet, they're the only spec with zero focus revolving around it, relegating the beast as a 'pocket tank' while the Hunter shoots from afar. Their 'Lone Wolf' passive actively encourages fighting without a pet, granting a damage boost when the pet is dismissed, but the damage boost isn't so dramatic that the Hunter can't still use the pet for utility if desired.
- Blade on a Stick: The Survival specialization of Hunters opts out of ranged combat, opting for the brutality of melee combat, most commonly wielding a vicious hunting spear instead. Troll and Tauren Hunters, in particular, have long and illustrious histories with their spears; Tauren are known to carve their family lineage in their runespears, and Troll Headhunters have been able to keep up with Elven Archers and Dwarven Riflemen with only a good arm and a satchel of throwing spears.
- Bottomless Magazines: Hunters used to run out of shots, not anymore.
- Bow and Sword in Accord: Was subverted with Mists of Pandaria rolled around and Hunters swapped to only wielding ranged weapons. In Battle For Azeroth, Survival Hunters play it straight, primarily wielding a melee weapon while sporting a hand-crossbow for a few ranged attacks.
- Dual Wield: Subverted to an extent. They used to be able to dual wield single handed weapons until Mo P made ranged weapons occupy the main slot. It is still possible for them to dual wield, but given their ranged DPS nature it would be ineffectual. In Legion, despite the fact that Hunters can dual wield and have a melee specialization in Survival, the spec is built around two-handed combat, instead of dual wielding.
- Dynamic Entry: Survival Hunters have the Harpoon ability. They toss a harpoon, attached to a chain, at the enemy, and then tug on the chain to leap at the target while also rooting them in place. Originates earlier in the franchise from non-player characters that hunt dragons using chained spears to either pull the beast down or pull themselves up.
- There's also Disengage, which is a backward leaping move made for escaping, but skilled Hunter placers can jump, turn their character, cast Disengage, and turn back towards their foe, for a makeshift gap-closer.
- Fluffy Tamer: Devilsaurs, core hounds, raptors, nether rays...... There are countless terrifying beasts in the World of Warcraft, and many of them could be tamed by a skilled (or unskilled) hunter. Many players also have the tendency to give their pets weird/cute/funny names (Turtles named "The Will Of The Klaxxi", see memes for more detail).
- Forest Ranger: Blood Elven rangers, the Farstriders, are an example of this, as are Night Elven sentinels. Marksmanship Hunters specifically invoke this trope. The Dwarven Mountaineers could be considered a mountain variant.
- Guile Hero: A lot of Hunter abilities focus on cunning tactics and survival instincts. Misdirection causes a target the Hunter attacks to believe something else (The target the Hunter used Misdirection on) attacked it instead. Feign Death fools a target into thinking the Hunter died, so it ignores him; the pet also can Play Dead, giving a similar effect as Feign Death but for the pet instead.
- The Gunslinger: If you choose to use a gun. Dwarven Mountaineers, in particular, are known for their skill with a firearm paired with loyal, tamed bears or rams. Goblin Hunters personally craft and tweak their beloved explosives and firearms, while training crabs and dogs to do their dirty work.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Aside from very specific conditions, you will hit whatever you've targeted.
- In Harmony with Nature: Hunters are men and women of the wilderness. They spend most of their lives in nature, stalking prey while adapting to the mercilessness of nature. In turn, they are excellent survivalists and are perfectly fine with living in the wild.
- In the End, You Are on Your Own: In Classic, when doing the Ancient Petrified Leaf questline, hunters must kill four demons hidden across the world entirely on their own. They've had a pet by their side ever since level 10, but now they must forgo it, or else their prey will teleport away and flee if even one other being is on their threat table.
- Martial Arts Staff: The other common melee weapon for Survival hunters.
- Mix-and-Match Critters: Their class mount is a Wolfhawk, a beast that's a hybrid between a wolf and a hawk. It's cry sounds like a mixture of a howl and a screech. Also, yes, there's also ones you can tame.
- Multishot: One of the hunter skills. It involves shooting a ridiculous amount of ammunition over a widespread area at once. The Barrage and Volley talents also invoke the trope; with Barrage, the Hunter unleashes a huge number of shots into a cone in front of them, and Volley causes every auto-attack to also fire a number of arrows from the sky that rain down on the target and enemies nearby.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Talonclaw, a spear for Survival hunters, originally wielded by Huln Highmountain, leader of the Tauren in the War of the Ancients.
- Thas'dorah, Legacy of the Windrunners, a bow for Marksmanship hunters, once wielded by the missing Alleria Windrunner.
- Titanstrike, a gun for Beast Mastery hunters, crafted by the Titanic keeper Mimiron. While wielding Titanstrike, the hunter can also call on Thorim's wolf, Hati, as a second pet.
- Nature Hero: The vast majority of Hunters fit this trope, with only a few, more civilized versions not.
- Noble Savage: Orc, Troll, and Tauren Hunters naturally invoke this trope. Night Elves also, to a lesser extent. Beast Mastery and Survival Hunters both have abilities and passives that promote this theme.
- No "Arc" in "Archery": Hunter shots function similarly to spells, automatically homing in on the target, so long as that target doesn't dodge.
- Playing Possum: Feign Death ability.
- Poisoned Weapons: Stings are abilities used by Hunters that emphasize envenomed weapons. While Stings were once largely removed, they've made something of a resurgence in Legion, with every spec having access to one sting, and more through the PvP Honor Talent system. Each sting is named for an animal, and so represents the venom attributed to that animal. This differentiates the venoms used by Hunters to the poisons used by Rogues.
- Serpent Sting - Available only to Survival Hunters, or to Marksmanship Hunters through a talent, this is a very straightforward venom; it deals damage over time.
- Viper Sting - The mind-numbing venom of a viper has a hazardous effect on healing magics, reducing healing done by the target by 30% until the caster concentrates hard enough to counteract the effects (IE, casts a healing spell with a long cast time).
- Scorpid Sting - This muscle numbing venom reduces the critical strike chance of a victim's physical attacks.
- Spider Sting - Similar to Viper Sting, but this venom isn't limited to healing spells. While the venom holds (5 seconds), the next spell cast by the target incurs a short-duration silence, preventing them from casting more spells.
- Scarily Competent Tracker: Hunters have access to a unique mechanic called Tracking. This allows them to see enemies on the minimap by tracking their enemy type (Humanoid, Beast, Demon, etc). Tracking isn't exclusive to Hunters; Feral Druids can Track Humanoids, and Warlocks can Find Demons. But Hunters are notable for not only for being able to track every enemy type in the game, but also being able to track enemies that no one else can track, like Dragonkin and Giants.
- Screaming Warrior: Like a roaring bear or a shrieking eagle, Hunters shout battle cries often during combat. The Beast Mastery cooldown 'Bestial Wrath', and the Survival cooldown 'Coordinated Assault', both have the Hunter and pet roar in tandem before going into a rage.
- Stealth Expert: Adept at camouflage and stealth, but not to the extent of the Rogue. They have a Camouflage talent that stealths them, and heals them as long as they remain hidden.
- Throw Down the Bomblet: Hunters have had varied access to explosives as weapons. Marksmanship Hunters can opt into the Explosive Shot talent, which is a bomb attached to an arrow or bullet. Explosive Trap is a PvP talent that Hunters can opt into, and Survival Hunters have Wildfire Bomb, a primitive explosive made alchemically that is thrown and explodes in a cone on impact with an enemy.
- Wildfire Bomb can be augmented with the Wildfire Infusion talent, causing the bomb to be enhanced with either Shrapnel, volatile venomous gas, or pheromones.
- Throwing Your Sword Always Works: The ability Glaive Toss, which has the Hunter throw a pair of boomerang glaives at the target which strike and return. This talent was conceived by Blizzard in response to Hunters who wanted to wield the late Throwing Weapons, which were ranged weapons made for Rogues and Warriors but were removed from the game. Hunter players could never use Throwing Weapons effectively with their shots, but Blizzard said the programming was impossible despite their efforts, so they made Glaive Toss instead.
- Glaive Toss returns in all but name as the 'Chakrams' talent for Survival, throwing a pair of chakrams at the target that return.
- Trap Master: Hunters are experts at placing and manipulating traps. All Hunters can use both Tar Trap and Ice Trap, and can talent into an Explosive Trap that knocks enemies away. Survival Hunters also have access to Steel Trap, a straightforward bear trap.
- Trick Arrow: Most unique Shot attacks are these, usually as a result of magically imbued weapons or other exotic forms of ammo.
Roles: Caster DPS.
Students gifted with a keen intellect and unwavering discipline may walk the path of the mage. The arcane magic available to magi is both great and dangerous and thus is revealed only to the most devoted practitioners. To avoid interference with their spellcasting, magi wear only cloth armor, but arcane shields and enchantments give them additional protection. To keep enemies at bay, magi can summon bursts of fire to incinerate distant targets and cause entire areas to erupt, setting groups of foes ablaze. Masters of ice can command blizzards that tear into flesh and limit movement. Should enemies manage to survive this assault, the mage can shrink them into harmless sheep in the blink of an eye.
Powerful magi can even generate enhancements and portals, assisting allies by sharpening their minds and transporting them instantly across the world.
Since being a magi only requires a higher understanding of magical theory and the brains to utilize it, anyone can be Mages as of 10.0. Night Elves were given mages in Cataclysm as the remnants of the Highborne chose to reintegrate with Night Elf society, and the two Tauren races in Dragonflight, who preferred nature and harmony rather than discovery of the arcane.
Magi from across Azeroth convened within the Hall of the Guardian in Dalaran to reform the Tirisgarde, in order to defend the world against the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion.
- An Ice Person: Frost mages. Arcane and Fire mages also have access to ice spells but it's not their focus.
- The Archmage: Finally a title upon completing the Mage class campaign in Legion. Even before this, several of the most prominent archmagi of the Kirin Tor work directly under you, and it can be argued characters have been this in all but name for a while.
- Baleful Polymorph: The Polymorph ability turns an enemy into a harmless sheep. This ability can be glyphed for other critter animals, like monkeys and bear cubs.
- Barrier Warrior: Can create a shield appropriate to their specialization to absorb damage. The shield also has bonus effects depending on the element, such as the Blazing Barrier dealing Fire damage to attackers, Ice Barrier slowing down melee attackers, or Prismatic Barrier reducing the duration of harmful effects.
- Black Mage: Mages are a pure DPS class and has one of highest DPS in the game.
- Critical Hit Class: Both Fire and Frost Mages get traits that make them want to exploit critical hits as much as possible. Fire Mages have the Hot Streak passive that gives them an instant-cast Pyroblast or Flamestrike, as well as some spells that deliver guaranteed critical hits (Fire Blast, and with certain talents so are Fireball, Pyroblast, Scorch, and Dragon's Breath), and the Combustion spell that guarantees critical strikes while Combustion lasts. Frost Mages have the Shatter passive, that triples the Critical Strike chance against frozen targets, as well as Fingers of Frost that allows them to cast spells as if the target were frozen.
- Difficult, but Awesome: Arcane mages are the only spellcasters that, as of Battle for Azeroth, need to ensure they don't run out of mana in battle. Furthermore, they also have a secondary mechanic, Arcane Charges, that significantly increases the damage some of their spells deal. The main Arcane spell, Arcane Blast, significantly increases in damage and mana cost per Arcane Charge (which it also generates, alongside Arcane Explosion), and the only spell that removes Arcane Charges, Arcane Barrage, removes all of them. Also, Arcane mages only get one way to restore mana quickly in Evocation, which has a rather long cooldown. All in all, Arcane mages require very careful mana usage to reach their DPS potential.
- Familiar: Frost mages can summon a water elemental to fight with them.
- Glass Cannon: All three of a Mage's specializations focus on dealing as much damage as possible (the only differences being in how that damage is dealt - Frost focuses on spell Combos and slowing down enemies, Fire focuses on damage over time and casting spells while moving, and Arcane is Difficult, but Awesome, focused on Mana Meter management). They are also Squishy Wizards with very limited defensive abilities.
- Harmless Freezing:
- Mages can use Ice Block to freeze themselves in a huge block of ice, and become immune to any kind of harm for a few seconds, after which they thaw with no harmful consequences. Zig-zagged, as using Ice Block creates a "Hypothermia" debuff that doesn't allow the Mage to use Ice Block again while the debuff lasts.
- The Mage's Frost Nova and the Water Elemental's Freeze freeze enemies in place, but apart from interactions with spells like Ice Lance and talents like Shatter, they work exactly the same as using roots to prevent them from moving.
- Having a Blast: The Fire mage's "Living Bomb", which causes the target to explode after a bit.
- Heal It With Fire: One of the Fire mage's spells, "Cauterize" involves the mage burning their wound together, healing them immediately but damaging them afterward.
- Last Chance Hit Point: Clever mages use Cauterize as a warning to encase themselves in their Ice Block, which negates all incoming (and outgoing) damage, including from Cauterize itself.
- Invisibility with Drawbacks:
- The titular mage spell, which makes Mages invisible for 20 seconds, or until they do an action or take damage.
- Arcane Mages get an improved version of the spell, which not only makes the Mage invisible instantly (instead of after 3 seconds), but also gives them a defense bonus until 3 seconds after invisibility runs out.
- The "Mass Invisibility" PvP talent gives Arcane mages the ability to make all allies within 40 yards invisible for a short amount of time.
- Playing with Fire: Fire mages.
- Miracle Food: Mages possess the ability to conjure up refreshments immediately with magic.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Felo'melorn (Elvish for "Flamestrike"), a spellblade for Fire mages, once passed down through the royal Sunstrider dynasty before Prince Kael'thas' fall from grace, combined with its attached offhand.
- Ebonchill, a Magic Staff for Frost mages originally wielded by the first Guardian of Tirisfal, Alodi.
- Alu'neth, Greatstaff of the Magna, a sentient staff for Arcane mages once wielded by the Guardian Aegwynn.
- Painfully Slow Projectile: The PvP spell Greater Pyroblast involves hurling a massive ball of fire that can be kept up, or even outrun, in a running pace. And it's both slow and painful, being a Percent Damage Attack that deals up to 35% of the target's health.
- Portal Door: Mages can create Portals to major cities, so that party members can teleport to those places.
- Pure Energy: Arcane mages harness the raw power of the universe itself, able to unleash pure surges of devastating energy to destroy enemies.
- Status-Buff Dispel: Mages have the "Spellsteal" spell that not only removes a beneficial Magic effect from the target, but it also gives it to the Mage. The Kleptomaniac PvP talent gives Mages the ability to steal all Magic buffs from the target (though only once every 30 seconds).
- Teleport Spam: A specialty of Mages. They have a wide range of teleportation spells that make them the most mobile spellcasters in the game (although not as mobile as melee attackers).
- The Blink spell is the most basic form of a Mage's teleportation, teleporting the caster a few yards away.
- The Shimmer talent replaces and upgrades Blink by not only giving it a second charge, but by also being able to be used while casting another spell. It allows Mages to dodge an incoming attack while not interrupting theirs.
- The Displacement spell, exclusive to Arcane Mages, makes Blink and Shimmer leave an orb for 10 seconds after being cast. When Displacement is used, it returns the Mage to the orb, while resetting the cooldown of Blink or Shimmer. In layman's terms, it gives Mages two more teleportations every 30 seconds. Furthermore, if Shimmer is used instead of Blink, Displacement can be used while casting another spell, just like Shimmer.
- Mages also have Teleport spells that allow them to go to any major city instantly.
- Time Master: Mages get some time manipulation abilities:
- "Time Warp" gives the Mage and everyone in their group a Haste increase for 30 seconds not unlike Bloodlust or Heroism.
- "Temporal Shield" is a PvP talent that encases the Mage in a shield that does not protect, but instead, when it runs out, it heals the Mage for all the damage they took while the shield was active.
- The PvP talent "Rewind Time", which increases the amount of time Mages have to use Displacement before the Blink orb disappears, implies Displacement involves the Mage warping back in time.
- "Alter Time" places an eight second buff on the Mage. When the buff expires (or the Mage uses Alter Time again), the Mage instantly returns to the position and current health they had when Alter Time was used. Older versions of the spell also gave the Mage back their Mana reserves, buffs, and debuffs.
Roles: Tank, Healer, Melee DPS.
This is the call of the paladin: to protect the weak, to bring justice to the unjust, and to vanquish evil from the darkest corners of the world. These holy warriors are equipped with plate armor so they can confront the toughest of foes, and the blessing of the Light allows them to heal wounds and, in some cases, even restore life to the dead. Ready to serve, paladins can defend their allies with sword and shield, or they can wield massive two-handed weapons against their enemies. The Light grants paladins additional power against the undead and demons, ensuring that these profane beings corrupt the world no longer.
Paladins are not only zealots, but also guardians of the righteous, and they bestow blessings on those the Light would shine upon. The Light radiates from paladins, and worthy allies who stand near them are emboldened by its power.
Paladins have historically been a Class associated to the Alliance as the predominant worshippers of the Holy Light, however in recent times other races have managed to tap into power that's either light-adjacent or so close to it it's easier to just put them into the same "umbrella" even if they're not technically Paladins. The Blood Elves originally stole their Light by force by siphoning it from the captured Naaru Mu'ru, but returned to proper Light Worship after the end of the Sunwell raid when the Sunwell was restored with a Light aspect. Kalimdorian Tauren in the lead-up to Cataclysm discovered a way to channel the light of their sun god An'she in a way identical to Paladin arts, creating the Sunwalkers. And the Zandalari have an order known as "Prelates" who draw power from the Loa to use their powers in ways that once again is so close to Light magic they're sorted into the Paladin class.
The greatest Paladins from cross Azeroth comprise an organization known as the Knights of the Silver Hand. Operating out of the Sanctum of Light beneath Light's Hope Chapel in the Plaguelands, they were among the first class orders to confront the Burning Legion during their Third Invasion of Azeroth, with their then-Highlord, Tirion Fordring, becoming one of the first casualties.
- Balance Buff: Saying Paladins Took a Level in Badass in WotLK is an understatement. As opposed to only being healers in Vanilla, and only being Healers and Tanks in TBC, all specs became as viable as other classes in Wrath (to the point of Retribution Paladins, previously considered Joke Characters, briefly becoming absolutely overpowered).
- Barrier Warrior: Has a number of protective shields to protect themselves and others; the most notable is Divine Shield, which makes the Paladin completely immune to damage for a period of time.
- Blood Knight: Subverted. While there is a Sin'dorei Paladin organization called the Blood Knights, they don't relish in battle as a defining trait.
- Cherry Tapping: Until a major rework in Wrath, the retribution spec was pretty bad, leaving slightly-boosted auto-attacks as the only real addition to your damage. Many players ended up leveling in their tank spec, since it did almost the same damage but gave much higher health and armor, as well as abilities that were good for hitting several enemies at once.
- Cool Horse: Paladins get a special-looking horse called Warhorse at Level 20, a Charger at Level 40, access to a unique Horse form the Argent Crusade, and a Golden Highlord's Charger during their Order Hall campaigns.
- Cool Sword: The famous Ashbringer has become the artifact weapon for retribution paladins in Legion.
- Drop the Hammer: Paladins can wield hammers, and they are the favored lore weapons of Alliance Paladins. Several Paladin effects utilize hammers as a result.
- The Judgement spell takes this literally by consisting of a Hammer of light which was once dropped on the enemy's head. As of Legion, it is now thrown horizontally at the enemy.
- The Silver Hand is the artifact weapon for Holy Paladins in Legion. It was once the hammer wielded by Tyr, a titan who gave its name to Tirisfal.
- Good Feels Good: Paladins are paragons of the Light, and strive to help out others simply because it's the right thing to do.
- Good Is Not Soft: They are inherently good. If you are not, they will kill you dead with righteous fury.
- Healing Hands: Paladins are able to heal and resurrect allies with the power of the Light. The holy spec specializes in this field.
- Heroic Sacrifice:
- Paladins once had the power to sacrifice themselves to remove an ally from combat and make them immune to damage; this was particularly useful to cast on a healer when the party was losing a fight, allowing them to resurrect the party after the battle to reduce downtime.
- In general, what makes a Paladin is a mindset dedicated to this trope; they are the frontline paragons, taking blows in heavy armor so that others don't have to. Even those who focus on smiting evil still do so clad in armor and with holy empowerment that allows them to continue fighting long after others would have succumbed to their wounds. Paladins help others because it is the right thing to do, irregardless of the danger it puts themselves in.
- Holy Hand Grenade: Retribution paladins are the embodiment of light's wrath and are the vindicators of justice and vanquishers of evil. Wielding massive two-handed weapons, these holy warriors smite their foes with the power of the Light.
- Light 'em Up: Paladins derive their power from the Holy Light, whether through devotion or force. The exception being Tauren Paladins, the Sunwalkers, who derive their powers from the sun.
- Light Is Good: Primarily played straight. Most Paladins worship the Holy Light, an omnipresent "force" that functions as the source of their powers. Paladins with strong faith in the Light have been granted many inexplicable blessings, particularly protection from the powers of the Scourge and Burning Legion, and increased strength when fighting against them. Many of the most heroic and honorable major characters in the game are also Paladins, such as Tirion Fordring and Bolvar Fordragon.
- Draenei Paladins draw their holy powers from the teachings of the Naaru, who are the most unambiguously benevolent force in the Warcraft mythos, considered by some to be physical manifestations of the Light itself.
- Double subverted by the Blood Elf Paladins. Though High Elves had their own Priests prior to the fall of Quel'thalas, the Blood Elves' desperation led to the use of demonic powers and weakened their natural connection to the Light; the Blood Knights instead gained their holy powers by leeching them directly from a captive Naaru. They later realized the error of their ways, and when Velen reignited the Sunwell, they learned to once again draw their powers from faith.
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Protection paladins wield shields in accord with a single-handed weapon to absorb damage and aid them in tanking.
- Truthguard is the artifact weapon for Protection Paladins in Legion, combined with the sword named Oathseeker.
- Magic Knight: They are the typical high fantasy paladin, blending strong armor, heavy weapon strikes, and healing magic.
- Mighty Glacier: Paladins are one of the least mobile classes. Instead of focusing on that aspect, like Death Knights, they focus instead on target lockdown and blessings that make them immune to enemy crowd control. Divine Steed is their only option for mobility and is a short-duration speed boost that mounts them astride their mount, allowing them to fight like a Knight for a few seconds. More focus, however, is placed on enemy hindering abilities, like Hammer of Justice, one of the game's longest duration stuns. Protection has access to Avenger's Shield, which tosses a shield that damages and slows a group of enemies, and Retribution has Hand of Hindrance, which is a powerful targeted slow.
- Multiple Life Bars: Of a sort - A paladin has a number of tools to stay in the fight for longer than their health bar makes immediately apparent.
- Their regular healthpool, with all the self-healing that entails.
- Divine Shield: For the duration, the paladin is completely invulnerable - which means nothing* stops them from healing themselves back up to full
- Lay on Hands: A long cooldown that heals the paladin to full health instantly.
- Depending on the specialisation and expansion, there's usually a third kind of invulnerability or death-negation waiting in the wings.
- Mundane Utility: A paladin's Blessing of Protection and Divine Shield renders their targets immune to damage - the former physical damage and the latter all kinds of damage. Since falling damage is physical damage which bypasses damage reduction but not immunities, paladins sometimes use either to engage in a downplayed version of Rocketless Reentry, plunging falls which should be lethal and activating either just before impactnote , crashlanding and walking away without a scratch.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Truthguard, a shield for Protection paladins, which wields Titan magic capable of revealing hidden demons, combined with its attached sword Oathseeker.
- The Silver Hand, a hammer for Holy paladins originally wielded by the Titanic watcher Tyr following the loss of his hand, alongside a tome.
- Ashbringer, the long-awaited two-handed fiery sword for Retribution paladins.
- The Order: Paladins of all factions belong to one sect belonging to the military of their respective factions. Humans and Dwarven Knights of the Silver Hand; Draenei Vindicators; Tauren Sunwalkers; Blood Elven Blood Knights; and Zandalari Prelates. It is unknown what order Dark Iron Dwarf Paladins belong to.
- The Paladin: Church Militant Magic Knight with healing and light powers. Check, check, check, and check!
- Power Gives You Wings: Avenging Wrath increases a Paladin's damage and healing abilities, while also giving them a nice pair of non-functional wings. With a Glyph, they also make you fall slowly.
- Status Buff: Blessing of Might, Blessing of Wisdom, and Blessing of Kings can be applied to the Paladin or their allies, but only to one target at a time.
- Super Mode: Avenging Wrath, which gives a damage and healing boost shown by wings appearing on them.
- Throwing Your Shield Always Works: Protection Paladins have access to the ability Avenger's Shield, which throws your shield at an enemy. The shield then bounces between three enemies before coming back to you.
- Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Retribution Paladins, on the other hand, have Hammer of Wrath, they throw a Hammer of Light at an enemy as a Finishing Move.
- White Magic: They gain most of their power through the Holy Light.
- Why Won't You Die?: Paladins, ever since all the way in Vanilla, have had a reputation for coming back from the brink again, and again, and again. To the point that it's a common joke to state that paladins have Multiple Life Bars
Roles: Healer, Caster DPS.
Priests are devoted to the spiritual, and express their unwavering faith by serving the people. For millennia they have left behind the confines of their temples and the comfort of their shrines so they can support their allies in war-torn lands. In the midst of terrible conflict, no hero questions the value of the priestly orders. These masters of the healing arts keep their companions fighting far beyond their normal capacities with an array of restorative powers and blessings. The divine forces at the priests command can also be turned against foes, smiting them with holy fury.
As light cannot exist without darkness, and darkness without light, some priests tap into shadow to better understand their own abilities, as well as the abilities of those who threaten them.
Being spiritual leaders and Azeroth being a world of gods and faith, or cutthroat individuals seeking to comprehend the Void's power, Priest is a class available to all races in 10.0. Gnomes and Tauren being given the class in Cataclysm as magical field medics and secondary members of the Sunwalkers (mentioned alongside Paladins) and Highmountain Tauren and Orcs being given them in Dragonflight, having long had the role of "spiritual leader" only occupied by Shamanism before now.
Priests from denominations across Azeroth agreed to form the Conclave, a unified order, in order to stand against the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion. They operated out of the Netherlight Temple, a draenei facility located deep in the Twisting Nether.
- Casting a Shadow: Shadow priests in a nutshell.
- Cast from Hit Points: Shadow priests have some skills based around sacrifice. For instance, "Shadow Mend" will initially heal the target, but comes at the cost of some of that restored health over a period. "Shadow Word: Death" used to harm the user if the effect didn't kill the target. "Surrender to Madness" grants the Shadow priest a massive boost in power... and then deals massive damage to the caster at the end of the effect, perhaps killing them. Horribly.
- Combat Medic: Discipline has a very heavy focus on healing-through-damage. Their actual proper, direct heals are very weak, but put a buff called atonement on the healed ally that mirrors damage the priest does as healing. Once Atonement is on the wounded allies, the priest unloads with damage to sustain the party. This makes a Discipline Priest poor against sudden bursts of unexpected damage, but great against sustained, trickling damage and damage they can predict and prepare for.
- Dark Is Not Evil: In its shadow incarnation, it is arguably one of the darkest classes in the entire game, with an explicit connection to the game's resident Eldritch Abominations and powers over madness, darkness, and void. They are still the good guys.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: Shadow Priests enter Void Form with high levels of Insanity. And then there's Surrender to Madness...
- Healing Hands: Priests have two specs specializing in this.
- Holy Hand Grenade: Some spells (Smite for example). Overall, averted; unlike paladins, priests are quite bad at using the light to hurt, and have to become shadow priests to deal any meaningful damage.
- Light 'em Up: Some Priests, like paladins, derive their powers from the Holy Light, either through devotion or through zealotry. The Tauren priests, the Sages, are an exception since they draw power from the sun. Others can derive power from elsewhere, such as Trolls and the Loa of Kings, Rezan. But it always resembles light in its aesthetics.
- Light Is Good: Again, naturally.
- Living Weapon: In Legion, the Shadow priest artifact weapon "Xal'atath, Blade of the Black Empire" has a mind and will of its own. Overlaps with Evil Weapon.
- Lovecraftian Superpower: Long-implied before Legion, Shadow priests forsake the Light to channel the powers of the Old Gods. This allows them not only a number of Psychic Powers but also the ability to summon Combat Tentacles and Eldritch Abomination minions.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Our Vampires Are Different: Shadow priest abilities Vampiric Touch, Vampiric Embrace, and the talent San'layn (San'layn being Warcraft's version of vampires).
- Power Born of Madness: Shadow priests literally use Insanity as a resource as of Legion. Void Form can be extended by maintaining high levels of Insanity, and Surrender to Madness is less likely to kill you as long as Void Form stays up.
- Power Floats: In Void Form, Shadow priests levitate for its duration.
- Power of the Void: Shadow priests draw power from the void and use void energy to empower their offensive spells.
- Psychic Powers: Most Shadow priest offensive powers attack the mind.
- Red Mage: Discipline priests use both Light and Shadow magic for their spells.
- Self-Imposed Challenge: Leveling in the holy spec used to be considered this, but recent changes have made the spec considerably more efficient for basic questing.
- White Mage: Holy priests are nothing but this.
- White Magic: Holy priests gain their power through the Holy Light.
Roles: Melee DPS.
For rogues, the only code is the contract, and their honor is purchased in gold. Free from the constraints of a conscience, these mercenaries rely on brutal and efficient tactics. Lethal assassins and masters of stealth, they will approach their marks from behind, piercing a vital organ and vanishing into the shadows before the victim hits the ground. Rogues can dip their weapons in paralyzing toxins that render foes unable to defend themselves. These silent stalkers wear leather armor so they can move unencumbered, ensuring that they land the first strike.
With the rogues poisons and speed, the first strike is often the last step before the killing blow.
For some, however, stealth is more of a suggestion. Trading daggers for swords and a pistol, they fight toe-to-toe with their enemies...but that doesn't mean they play nice. They fight to win and they'll fight dirty - anything is fair game to these outlaws.
Rogues fend for themselves, looking for fights in which they dictate the terms. Theyre the shadows in the night that remain unseen until the right moment comes to strikethen they dispatch an opponent with quick blade work or a deadly toxin snuck acutely into the bloodstream. Rogues are opportunistic thieves, bandits, and assassins, but theres an unparalleled art to what they do.
Since comprehension of dirty tactics is something that all races can at least comprehend, Rogue is available to every race, with the last to receive them being the Draenei, Tauren and their subraces, all four being honorable races that mostly spurn underhanded tactics, yet also possessing groups willing to be pragmatic and violent if need be (Such as the Grimtotem, Bloodtotem, and Rangari).
The most skilled Rogues from throughout Azeroth are invited to join the Uncrowned, a secretive organization operating from the Hall of Shadows in Dalaran's sewers. During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, they emerge from the shadows to defend the world alongside the other class orders.
- Casting a Shadow: In Legion, Subtlety Rogues are centered around the idea of enhancing their skills with a dagger with shadow magic.
- Badass Normal: Rogues are not trained in any kind of special powers. They are just skilled combat personnel who are skilled with ambushes, poisoning and hand-to-hand melee combat with swords or daggers.
- Empowered Badass Normal: Unless you're a Subtlety Rogue, in which case you do augment combat with Shadow magic.
- Bow and Sword in Accord: Subverted. They used to be able to equip a bow before the secondary weapon slot was removed in Mists (They can still equip all 3 types of ranged weapons in their main slot if their player really wants to, but they can't use any of their skills properly).
- Combat Pragmatist: Rogues are mostly about sneaky underhanded tactics and knocking their opponents back before unleashing a hail of bladed assaults. They rely on stealth, poisons and backstabbing to cripple or assassinate their targets.
- Dual Wield: Because one dagger is simply not enough.
- Flash Step: The Outlaw ability Killing Spree and the Shadowstep talent work like this.
- Finishing Move: One of the key features of the rogue.
- Fragile Speedster: They hit hard and they hit fast. They get hit and they go down almost instantly.
- Gameplay and Story Segregation: Outlaw's core abilities are clearly meant to be thematically used with swords - what with names like "Saber Slash" and "Run Through" - but aside from their Artifact, they can still wield axes, maces, and fist weapons.
- In Battle for Azeroth, Saber Slash and Run Through have been renamed Sinister Strike and Dispatch, respectively.
- The Gunslinger: Outlaw rogues in Legion interweave gunplay in their combat, either as a follow-up to a well-placed strike, or to stun enemies.
- Grappling-Hook Pistol: Outlaw rogues can pick up a Grappling Hook to leap to not-normally-accessible areas.
- Knife Nut: Various skills require the use of a dagger in the main hand, though not all specializations use these skills. Also, their class exclusive Legendary Weapon from Cataclysm, Fangs of the Father is actually a pair of daggers.
- Last Chance Hit Point: Their Cheat Death talent is a notoriously popular choice, to the point where other classes' Last Chance Hit Point mechanics are often grouped under its name. Upon taking fatal damage, Cheat Death restores the Rogue to low health and grants high damage mitigation for a brief period.
- Lightning Bruiser: Outlaw Rogues stand toe-to-toe with enemies like duelists, using Dodges and Parries to fight enemies eye-to-eye. Subverted for Assassination and Subtlety, who are more squishy but have their own ways to survive.
- Master Swordsman: Outlaw rogues.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- The Kingslayers, the twin daggers once wielded by Garona Halforcen to slay King Llane Wrynn.
- The Dreadblades, a set of demonic cutlasses for Outlaw rogues, which compel their wielder to feed the blades.
- The Fangs of the Devourer, a pair of daggers formed from the teeth of Sargeras' personal felhound.
- Ninja: Subtlety's aesthetic in Legion, as assassins that stalk through the shadows; their ranged abilities just so happen to be shuriken-flavored (compare Assassin's "Fan of Knives" to Sub's "Shuriken Storm").
- Nonchalant Dodge: Rogues easily have some of the highest dodge ratings in the game.
- Pirate: In contrast, Outlaw's aesthetic, with themes of sabers and pistols for that distinct Pirates vs. Ninjas flavor.
- Poisoned Weapons: All Rogues are skilled in the application and implementation of various poisons, with assassination rogues specializing in them.
- Shadow Walker: A few Rogue abilities, like Shadowstep, convey this fantasy.
- Smoke Out: Some Rogue abilities use smoke bombs. Vanish has the Rogue disappear in a cloud of smoke. Smoke Bomb throws a bomb of blinding smoke that blocks targeted abilities.
- Spin Attack: Fan of Knives, crossed with Area of Effect; the Rogue spins around and throws knives in all directions.
- Stealth Expert: Being shady characters operating outside boundaries of law, this skill is immensely helpful. Rogue tactics, particularly those for Subtlety rogues, are based enormously on the ability Stealth.
- Sword and Gun: Outlaw rogues have a Pistol Shot ability that evokes this image.
- Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Assassin rogues have access to Deadly Throw, which has them throw their weapon at an enemy for extra damage and a snare.
Roles: Caster DPS, Melee DPS, Healer.
Shaman are spiritual guides and practitioners, not of the divine, but of the very elements. Unlike some other mystics, shaman commune with forces that are not strictly benevolent. The elements are chaotic and left to their own devices, they rage against one another in unending primal fury. It is the call of the shaman to bring balance to this chaos. Acting as moderators among earth, fire, water, and air, shaman summon totems that focus the elements to support the shamans allies or punish those who threaten them.
These masters of the elements can also call upon elemental forces directly, unleashing torrents of lava and bolts of lightning against foes. The elements can create, destroy, support, and hinder. The experienced shaman balances the vast spectrum of these primordial forces into an array of diverse abilities, making shaman versatile heroes and valued members of any group.
For millennia, since the primitive tribal cultures of Azeroth and Draenor, the natural elements of the physical universe have been celebrated, feared, and even worshiped. Mystics sought communion with the earth, air, fire, and water, and learned to tap into their raw power. In time, these spiritual guides came to understand that natures elemental forces arent wholly benevolent, but have, in fact, been locked in an unending conflict of chaos and primal fury that once consumed the physical realm. So began the calling of the Shaman, to bring balance to these volatile energies, leveraging their intensity to mend wounds . . . or inflict them.
Being seen as more primal and primitive, Shaman has long since been a class associated to the Horde and almost all of their non-elven and Forsaken members can be Shamans, while there are some members of the Alliance who also tap into shamanistic arts. Wildhammer and Dark Iron Dwarves have long histories of Shamanism, which they shared with the Bronzebeards in Cataclysm. The Draenei discovered Shamanism after those who were left behind from the Draenor exodus mutated into Broken and lost their connection to the Light, the elementals were there to offer them succor and purpose, and Nobundo managed to sway mainstream Draenei society into giving Shamanism a chance so that now normal Draenei may also follow the elements as well as the Light. Kul'Tirans have an order known as the Tidesages that work with the elements of the deep ocean and the sea winds to predict the waves and safely guide ships, with many who don't simply stop at communing with water and cooperate with all four elements, making them the only human-adjacent race with Shamanistic potential.
Shaman from across Azeroth and beyond answer to the call of the Earthen Ring, which works to keep the balance between the four elements, as well as the denizens of Azeroth. During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, they establish a base at the Heart of Azeroth, a small cave overlooking the Maelstrom.
- Baleful Polymorph: The Hex ability turns enemies into frogs. Glyphs can change the hex to a number of diminutive animals, like cockroaches or compys. Hex is also fundamentally different than a Mage's Polymorph; the Hex victim is in full control of their movement, although they cannot cast or use spells. The Hex, however, does not immediately break upon taking damage, like a Mage's Polymorph does.
- The Voodoo Totem talent allows the Shaman to Hex a large number of enemies around a summoned totem.
- Blow You Away: While more offensive Air focused abilities take the form of Shock and Awe, Shamans still have a number of wind based abilities, although they're mostly used for utility. Wind Shear causes the shaman to buffet the target with a blast of wind to interrupt any spellcasting. Wind Rush Totem summons a totem that speeds up the Shaman and nearby allies with a quickening tailwind.
- Enhancement possesses the most wind-based abilities—in addition to those mentioned above, they have Windfury (an attack that has a chance to trigger with every main hand attack), and their Ascendance is Air-themed.
- Dishing Out Dirt: Earth Shields, Earthquake, Earth Shock etc.
- Dual Wield: Many Enhancement Shaman abilities (Lava Lash for example) requires the use of an off-hand weapon.
- Early-Installment Weirdness: The Shaman's Enhancement spec was originally designed to be a tanking spec, which was why they were geard towards heavier armor. This ended up being changed early on to them being melee DPS, which was initially focused on two-handed weapons before being shifted to dual-wielding one-handed weapons in Burning Crusade. Also, formerly Enhancement shamans received their melee attack power from the strength stat, but in Wrath of the Lich King this was changed to receiving melee attack power from agility (and consequentially made it much easier to find gear for the spec, since higher level mail that granted strength was vanishingly rare outside of Enhancement-specific raid tier and PVP sets).
- Elemental Weapon: Enhancement Shamans' main theme is enhancing their weapons with the elements via attacks like Flametongue or Stormstrike.
- Fury of the Stonemother, the off-hand counterpart to Doomhammer, is by default made of lava and stone. Alternate artifact appearances change its shape and what its made of.
- Elemental Powers: A Shaman's primary offensive prowess comes from communing with elemental spirits.
- Fire, Ice, Lightning: Uses all three in addition to earth
- Healing Hands: Restoration shamans focus their elemental powers on healing. The healing magic is mostly derived from the cleansing power of water, but earthen protection and spiritual healing through ancestral magic is also used.
- An Ice Person: Not as obvious as mages and death knights though. Shaman ice abilities are probably more associated to the manipulation of the water element than direct manipulation of ice, although a few abilities like Frost Shock, Icefury, and Frostbrand attempt to play at it.
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: if they are not carrying a staff, Restoration and Elemental shamans can be seen using one. Being casters, however, means the shields are mostly just Stat Sticks, and an off-hand item can be wielded instead.
- Magically-Binding Contract: Unlike Druids, the elemental forces that Shaman draw from are fully sentient, thus the caster is not harnessing their power, but is in a contract, harnessing power not belonging to them, which is sort of "on loan". Shaman that get disgraced in the eyes of the elements are little else but warriors in pelts as they refuse to offer them power, and while the elements can be forced to serve, it's considered a monstrously horrific thing as it "kills" the elements and mentally corrupts the user almost as badly as fel magic.
- Magikarp Power: Enhancement Shamans have rather meh DPS potential compared to Elemental Shamans early on, having to rely on auto-attacks and slow two-handed weapons to DPS. After gaining their attack speed buffs, the ability to dual-wield, and their exclusive skills, they become powerful avatars of Gaia's Vengeance that can be adequately described as Rogues with magic.
- Magma Man: Shamans possess several lava-based abilities (such as Lava Lash, Lava Burst, Liquid Magma Totem). In lore, dark shamans, shamans that enslave the elementals to do their bidding, could summon huge and powerful lava elementals called magma giants.
- Making a Splash: Many shaman healing powers are involved with evoking the power of the water elements. Riptide, for example, heals the target for a moderate amount and then heals them for more over time.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- The Fist of Ra-Den, an electric fist for Elemental shamans, used by the Titanic keeper Ra to create the Elemental Planes, with its own shield (the Highkeeper's Ward).
- Sharas'dal, Scepter of the Tides, a mace for Restoration shamans infused with the power of the Naga queen Azshara, with a complementary shield (the Shield of the Sea Queen).
- The Doomhammer, a hammer for Enhancement shamans previously wielded by Warchief Thrall, which gives the user the power to summon an elemental replica in their offhand.
- Playing with Fire: One of the basic forms of shamans' elemental powers.
- Raptor Attack: A glyph can change the Feral Spirit wolves into Spirit Raptors, and another can change Ghost Wolf into a raptor form, and with this glyph applied even works with the Feral Lunge talent (Described below). These reflect the close relationship that trolls have with raptors, similar to the Orc's relationship with wolves.
- Savage Wolves: Or Noble Wolves depending. Orcish (And later Tauren) Shaman have a noted kinship with the wolf, which embodies the primal cunning and ferocity that they respect. Shaman can take the form of a wolf spirit to move faster, and Enhancement can call upon the aid of spirit wolves in battle. A talent, Feral Lunge, causes an Enhancement Shaman to use their animal form to leap upon and bite a target, before shifting back into their normal form.
- Soul Power: This is the crux of all a Shaman can do. Their powers come from their unique ability to communicate with spirits—elemental spirits, animal spirits, ancestral spirits, plant spirits, etc. A number of Restoration abilities also invoke a spiritual type of healing; Chain Heal is a beam of spiritual light that bounces from person to person, and Spirit Link Totem redistributes health among allies around it, putting everyone at a high average health to make it easier for healers to assist them.
- Super Mode: All three specializations have access to a a talent that turns them into an ascendant, a transhuman creature made up entirely of one element.
- Elemental turns into a Flame Ascendant, removing the cooldown on Lava Burst and turning their Chain Lightning into the much more damaging Lava Beam, as well as making Lava Burst damage scale with crit.
- Enhancement turns into an Air Ascendant, their auto attacks and Stormstrike turning into Wind attacks—both are given a 30 yard range and the ability to bypass armor, and Stormstrike (transformed into Windstrike) also gains a reduction in cooldown.
- Restoration turns into a Water Ascendant, which duplicates all healing they do before evenly dividing it among allies in an AoE effect.
- Sadly, anyone hoping to be an Earth Ascendant is out of luck.
- Shock and Awe: Because of their powers over the elements, they are also very adept at the manipulation of lightning and it is their dominant method of offense; Lightning Bolt, Stormstrike, and Chain Lightning are major offensive spells for Shamans. A number of talents such as Lightning Surge Totem and Lightning Shield further solidify their relationship with the trope.
- Spirit Advisor: Shaman's close connection to the spirits means that they often seek guidance and wisdom from ancestors and other spirits.
- Status Buff: Shamans formerly bestowed a large number of buffs to party members via totems before buff spells/passive effects were revamped and spread throughout the classes, and totems were redesigned. These included granting attack power, spell power, and elemental resistance. Some modern totems still provide buffs—for instance, Wind Rush Totem (a talent shared by all three specs) boosts party members' speed.
- One spell that still remains and was at one time exclusive to the shaman class is Bloodlust/Heroism, which increases attack and casting speed for all party members by 30% for 40 seconds. Later, Mages and Hunters (via pets) were granted a similar ability.
- Summon Magic: Elemental Shamans can call an Earth (to tank) or Fire (for extra damage) elemental to aid them in combat, with a talent allowing the shaman to call upon the Storm elemental (which generates resources as it attacks), and Shaman specializing in Enhancement can summon spirit wolves (or raptors, if glyphed). As this isn't their specialty (see Warlocks for more dedicated summoners), the spells have a short duration and a long cooldown, though they are still useful.
- One of the signature Enhancement Shaman abilities, Feral Spirit, summons a pair of spectral wolves (which can be imbued with fire, frost, or lightning via the Elemental Spirits talent).
- Weather Manipulation: Shamans, with their connections to the wind elementals, can summon violent storms to aid their attacks.
Roles: Caster DPS.
In the face of demonic power, most heroes see death. Warlocks see only opportunity. Dominance is their aim, and they have found a path to it in the dark arts. These voracious spellcasters summon demonic minions to fight beside them. At first, they command only the service of imps, but as a warlocks knowledge grows, seductive succubi, loyal voidwalkers, and horrific felhunters join the dark sorcerers ranks to wreak havoc on anyone who stands in their masters way. Warlocks can ignite distant enemies in searing flame, send them fleeing in terror and pain, or afflict them with corrupting diseases and curses that steal the victims vitality.
These practitioners of the profane are feared across Azeroth, and many who have felt their wrath now prefer to fight alongside a warlock than against one.
Warlocks burn and destroy weakened foes with a combination of crippling illnesses and dark magic. While their demon pets protect and enhance them, warlocks strike at their enemies from a distance. As physically weak spellcasters bereft of heavy armor, cunning warlocks allow their minions to take the brunt of enemy attacks in order to save their own skin.
Warlocks are the most volatile and insatiable of spellcasters. Though they often pledge themselves to the service of noble causes and are not innately evil, their desire to understand darker magics and exercise unwavering command over demonic forces breeds mistrust among even their closest allies. Warlocks peer into the Void without hesitation, leveraging the chaos they glimpse within to devastating ends in battletheir greatest abilities are fueled by the souls theyve harvested from their victims. They exploit powerful shadow magic to manipulate and degrade the minds and bodies of their enemies. They employ fire magic, dropping hellish rain from the sky, to immolate the opposition. They summon and command indomitable demons from the Twisting Nether to do their bidding, or even to be sacrificed as the warlock sees fit, empowering and protecting the dark caster from harm.
As almost anyone has the potential to crave power to the extent of seeking these wicked magics, Warlock are available to most races, the only exceptions being the Night Elves, Draenei and Mag'har Orcs for knowing firsthand just how utterly dangerous and wicked the Burning Legion's power can be when it slips its leash, and Pandaren and Tauren for being, as a generality, too peaceful and pure to be willing to delve into such evil magics, though Trolls had to be added to the class' roster in Cataclysm. Why Kul'Tirans and Zandalari can't be Warlocks is unknown though, since there's no cultural predisposition against it, but they're exempted as well.
The most powerful and cunning Warlocks (outside those directly in the employ of the Burning Legion) comprise the Council of the Black Harvest. During the Legion's third attempt to invade Azeroth, the Council captured one of their portal worlds, the Dreadscar Rift, and operated out of it to sabotage the Legion's plans.
- Anti-Hero: They gain their powers from researching and learning demonic magic, which is said to be extremely dangerous and will corrupt the minds of people who study it, and are largely opportunists seeking to defeat their enemies with whatever method possible regardless of the morality.
- Casting a Shadow: Warlocks, by definition, are magic wielders and scholars who study and research shadow and fel magic and use thus with efficiency. Affliction and Demonology warlocks are more focused in this field, while Destruction warlocks focus more on fire magic.
- Cast from Hit Points: Some warlock spells work this way, such as (the now-removed) Life Tap that converted health into mana, and Health Funnel which restores health to the warlock's pet at the cost of their own health.
- Curse: With their knowledge in the black arts, Warlocks are able to cripple and torment enemies with dark curses using their demonic magic. Affliction warlocks are particularly adept in this art, specializing in the more corrosive aspects of fel magic.
- Dark Is Not Evil: They're described in the vanilla character creation screen as "the bane of all life" known for their "singular wickedness and cruelty", yet they are still capable of all the same heroic deeds as every other playable class.
- Deal with the Devil: Warlocks don't deal with them, they enslave them, although fel magic itself involves paying life force in exchange for destructive power.
- Fake Defector: Destruction warlocks seemingly betray their allies early on in the Legion expansion to get close enough to the alternate Gul'dan to steal the Jeweled Scepter of Sargeras.
- Hellish Horse: Warlocks, with their ability to summon demons, also possess the ability to summon Felsteeds: An alien race of stallions from a harsh planet with burning eyes and hooves. More powerful warlocks could summon Dreadsteeds: A particular breed of more fearsome Felsteeds with horns and spikes on its body.
- In Legion, after completing the Legionfall campaign, they can embark on a quest to obtain an even more impressive Felsteed.
- Heroic RRoD: A lot of warlock spells operate this way. Some convert health into mana and others, like Hellfire, deal heavy damage at the cost of damaging the user.
- Heroic Willpower: Said to be how good warlocks resist corruption from the dark powers they command.
- Incendiary Exponent: Destruction warlocks have a unique resource in Burning Embers. The more the warlock casts fire spells, the more their figure becomes wreathed in demonic flames, which the warlock can focus into powerful spells.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- The (Jeweled) Scepter of Sargeras, a staff for Destruction warlocks originally wielded by the Dark Titan Sargeras himself, used by Ner'zhul to (inadvertently) obliterate Draenor and create Outland.
- Ulthalesh, the Deadwind Harvester, a scythe for Affliction warlocks, which earned its name from scouring the land around Karazhan of all life to create the Deadwind Pass.
- Skull of the Man'ari, the animated skull of the first Eredar summoner Thal'kiel for Demonology warlocks, with his spine for a dagger.
- Not Evil, Just Misunderstood: Because of their association with orcs and demons, warlocks are oftentimes looked down upon and despised within their societies, seen as power-hungry madmen and sadistic maniacs. Because of this reason, many warlocks are discriminated against or even outright abolished from the magical academia or banished from their societies. However, many warlocks study dangerous fel magic to better understand demons and ways to counter them better and many of them are much nicer and more sane than some self-righteous *ahem*Scarlet Crusade*ahem* paladins and clerics.
- Our Demons Are Different: Demons in Warcraft are actually alien species from different planets conquered by the Burning Legion and corrupted by fel magic.
- Playing with Fire: Instead of the usual fel and shadow magics, Destruction warlocks, in order to fully maximize their abilities to devastate and wreak havoc, focus their studies on fire magic.
- Sickly Green Glow: Most fel magic has a green glow, but player warlocks' spells are mostly a mix of purple, black and green, and their fire spells are red or orange. However, later in Mists, player warlocks can embark on an epic quest to gain more understanding of fel magic and after encountering a mysterious secret society known as the Black Harvest , gain an ancient book of unknown power and turn their fire spells green after reading the contents and completing a scenario to defeat the leader of the Black Harvest.
- Soul Jar: Warlocks have access to Soul Shards, which are their victims souls kept in crystals. They use these to empower some of their spells. Warlocks also have soulstones, which can lock an ally's soul in a crystal so they can be resurrected if they die.
- Technicolor Fire: The fire magic used by Destruction warlocks is a darker orange than fire used by fire mages, with black embers mingled in the flames. By completing a special series of side quests in Mists of Pandaria, a warlock's fire magic can become the signature fel green color.
- These Are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know: Warlocks are essentially practitioners and scholars of the magic of the Burning Legion and is considered chaotic and extremely dangerous by most cultures in Azeroth. They study demonic magic through books of unimaginable powers and evoke the destructive powers of the legion upon their foes. Therefore, they are mainly looked down upon in the magic academia.
- Summon Magic: Their knowledge of demons enables them to forcibly summon demons from the Twisting Nether. While all Warlocks can summon and use a demon companion, and have their major cooldown tied to one, Demonology warlocks specialize in it, able to summon a veritable army of demons for them to command.
- The first demon they have is an Imp, which is a small, fireball throwing coward who complains about serving a warlock. He can also dispel magical debuffs away from the Warlock and their allies. With a glyph, it becomes a Fel Imp, who is much happier to serve them.
- The Voidwalker is a bulky demon made for tanking hits and taking great punishment. While he acts like The Eeyore, he nonetheless taunts and tanks enemies for its master. With a glyph, it becomes a Void Lord, which is a more Affably Evil, less whiny version of the Voidwalker who wears armor.
- The Sayaad is a crowd control focused demon who attacks with a whip. They are hopelessly in love with and obsessed with their master, and does whatever they ask. They have a Seduce ability, which enthralls an enemy, no matter the gender, for a short time. A glyph turns them into a Shivarra, a much less (openly) friendly but no less fanservicy (Or fan-diservicy?) demon who wields vicious swords.
- The Felhunter is a dog-like demon beast who is adept at sniffing out and consuming magic. While evil and demonic, they're just puppies to their warlock master, and have the ability to silence and dispel spellcasters. With a glyph, the Felhunter changes to an Observer, a demon that looks like a floating octopus with a giant eye who are living archives of the Legion's victories and hold secrets and knowledge of planets long forgotten or destroyed and are more than willing to share said knowledge with a master who lets them taste the exotic magics all around the universe.
- Demonology warlocks have access to a special demon - the Felguard. This axe-wielding juggernaut is a savage killer who has only one purpose: To cause as much death and destruction as possible. A glyph turns him into a Wrathguard, an Eredar offshoot race of demons who are similar to Felguards, except that they dual wield. Neither are particularly happy about serving you, hence the needed Demonology specialty.
- Each Warlock spec also has access to a major summon as their damage cooldown. Destruction warlocks call forth an Infernal, a flaming, barely-sentient golem made of fel-burning stones who only knows how to burn everything to cinders. Affliction warlocks summon a Darkglare, a particularly old and wise version of an Observer who deals increased damage based on how many damage-over-time effects the warlock currently has active. Demonology warlocks are better described below.
- Demonology warlocks are expressly based around their summons, and have access to a plethora of summoning spells through talents and additional abilities. While a Felguard/Wrathguard is their constant minion, they can summon swarms of imps, pair of Felhunters, a hail of Bilescourge (Flying demons who explode in felfire on impact), Vilefiends (Bat-like demons with sharp teeth and claws), a second Felguard (Because one is never enough), a Nether Portal (Which can summon any number of demons from Satyrs to Felhounds to Prince Malchezaar himself), and have a major cooldown in the form of Demonic Tyrant, a heavily-mutated Eredar who increases the damage of all of the other summoned demons.
- Lastly, all warlocks can conjure a Summoning Stone, which allows them and their allies to work together to summon players to their location, and Demonic Circle, which allows the warlock to place a summoning circle, and them summon themselves into the circle should they need to make a quick escape.
- Wreathed in Flames: Destruction warlocks can become this, the more Burning Embers they build up.
Roles: Tank, Melee DPS.
For as long as war has raged, heroes from every race have aimed to master the art of battle. Warriors combine strength, leadership, and a vast knowledge of arms and armor to wreak havoc in glorious combat. Some protect from the front lines with shields, locking down enemies while allies support the warrior from behind with spell and bow. Others forgo the shield and unleash their rage at the closest threat with a variety of deadly weapons. The warriors battle cries embolden friends and leave foes cowering in fear. With legendary precision, warriors target the smallest gaps in armor and slice at hamstrings in a blur of steel.
Every dragon slain, corrupted tyrant toppled, and demon banished from Azeroth has trembled in the face of these lords of war.
Warriors are the quintessential fearless fighters on the battlefield, and their pure martial prowess inspires courage in allies and despair in enemies. Experts in all manner of melee weaponry and possessing incredible physical strength and skill, Warriors are perfectly suited to serve as frontline combatants and battlefield commanders.
During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, many of the greatest Warriors of Azeroth were chosen by the Titan Keeper Odyn to serve as part of the Valarjar, an army meant to combat the Legion and other threats to the world, operating out of his fortress, the Skyhold.
The warrior class is available to all playable races, as it only takes effort and practice with melee weaponry to become one.
- The Ace: Warriors are the masters of close quarter combat and excel in the usage of weapons. Arms Warriors, in particular, are supposed to feel like true weapon masters; people who've trained for years to perfection with their chosen weapon. It shows through abilities such as Colossus Smash, where the Arms Warrior cuts completely through an enemy's armor, or Cleave, where the Warrior strikes multiple enemies in a single, vicious blow. They're also the only Warriors that have baseline access to Bladestorm; Fury can get it, but need to spend a talent to do so.
- Badass Normal: Warriors are martial artists without peer. But that's about it. Warriors do not rely on fancy spells or shiny gimmicks to drop the hammer on the enemy, just raw martial prowess.
- The Berserker: Fury Warriors in essence. All Warriors utilize rage, but Fury lives the trope.
- The developers have stated that they intended for Protection Warriors to embody everything between City Guards to the Knight in Shining Armor elements not covered by Paladins, while Arms Warriors are intended to be the kind of veterans that have special names for each of their weapons. While almost all character personality elements are left to the player, Fury Warriors' entire playstyle is distinctly built around being the "screaming, half-naked, bloodthirsty, rage-powered brute" that this trope implies.
- The Big Guy: Their role is to either dish out hell of a punishment or being the tank of a party.
- Bow and Sword in Accord: Subverted. They used to be able to equip a bow or ranged weapon before the secondary weapon slot was removed in Mists, one of the reasons being that it was not very useful in actual combat. It was rarely used for anything other than pulling an enemy. They now have Heroic Throw for that purpose.
- Charles Atlas Superpower: They're one of the premier Badass Normal classes in the game. That said, Fury Warriors are strong enough to dual wield two-handed weaponry.
- Dual Wield: Fury warriors dual wield with the option of using a pair of two-handed weapons.
- Finishing Move: Execute, which can only be used on a low health target, helps the Warrior dispatch a wounded foe.
- Heavy Equipment Class: Warriors are able to wear heavy plate armor and stand out as being able to use all weapon types except for wands. Fury warriors are the only specialization in the game that can dual wield two-handed weapons.
- Heroic Second Wind: With the "Second Wind" talent, Warriors constantly heal provided they haven't taken damage for a few seconds. Also the ability Victory Rush can fit this theme, an ability which activates after the Warrior gets a killing blow and deals damage to a different target while healing the Warrior.
- Heroic Willpower: A lot of Warrior abilities focus on this. How else would they stand beside spellcasters and slice them to bits?
- In a Single Bound: Heroic Leap is a defining example. In Legion, Warriors also exit their order hall by crashing into their destination like a meteor.
- I Shall Taunt You: Their "Taunt" ability grabs a foe's attention and makes them focus their attacks on the warrior instead of others. Some other classes have variations on this.
- Last Stand: The appropriately-named "Last Stand" ability grants the Protection Warrior a brief health boost for use in emergencies.
- Lightning Bruiser: Warriors are one of the most mobile classes, with access to two targeted Charging abilities and Heroic Leap. They tie with Survival Hunters, and are outclassed by Rogues, Monks, and Demon Hunters.
- Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Protection Warriors make ample use of shields. Their artifact weapon in Legion, the Scale of the Earth-Warder, was a shield made out of one of Deathwing's scales.
- Made of Iron: Some classes heal themselves with actual healing magic. Warriors just tank the damage head on and their adrenaline and bloodlust help them ignore it. Abilities like Shield Wall, Ignore Pain, and Die By The Sword emphasize this.
- Make Me Wanna Shout: Warriors have access to a number of Shout abilities to inspire allies or disrupt foes.
- Recklessness, a cooldown for Protection and Fury Warriors, causes all attacks to be assured critical strikes for a short time.
- Intimidating Shout inspires terror in enemies, causing the target and other enemies near the warrior to flee in fear.
- Commanding Shout bolsters allies by increasing their effective health.
- Dragon Roar, a talent for Fury Warriors, is a powerful bellow that knocks enemies back and deals physical damage.
- Battle Shout is a Status Buff that increases their and allies Strength and Agility.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Strom'kar, the Warbreaker, a two-handed sword for Arms warriors once wielded by the first king of Arathor to end the Troll Wars and seal away a lieutenant of the Old Gods.
- The Scale of the Earth-warder, a shield for Protection warriors made from the scale of the dragon Aspect Neltharion before he became Deathwing, with a complementary sword.
- The Warswords of the Valarjar, a pair of massive swords commissioned by the Titanic keeper Odyn and corrupted by the death goddess Helya.
- One-Handed Zweihänder: Fury warriors have the passive ability called Titan's Grip which allows them to wield two-handed weapons with one hand. Arms Warriors with the Defensive Stance talent also wield a two-handed weapon in one hand alongside a generic shield.
- Screaming Warrior: If a Warrior ability doesn't involve swinging a weapon, there's a good chance it involves yelling.
- Shield Bash: The Protection ability Shield Bash, which deals damage to an enemy with the shield.
- Shockwave Stomp: A few abilities like Thunderclap and Shockwave.
- Spin Attack:
- Two abilities - Whirlwind, which makes the Warrior spin in a blur of steel and deal instant damage to everyone around him, and Bladestorm, which is like an even more powerful Whirlwind, and causes the Warrior to become a continuous tornado of blades.
- The Arms talent Ravager, has the Arms Warrior toss a weapon to a location, where it spins in place to deal damage to anyone nearby.
- Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Warriors have access to different abilities that have them throw their weapon.
- Tranquil Fury: Arms Warriors embody this trope. Out of all the specs, they have the least amount of shouting and rampaging, instead focusing on precise weapon mastery. While they still use Rage, it's more subdued, and their attacks are dramatically slow compared to other classes, but pack a lot more punch. An Arms Talent called Deadly Calm causes abilities to cost no Rage for the duration, and instead of using Recklessness as their major damage cooldown, they instead have Colossus Smash, a perfectly aimed strike that sunders a foe's armor.
- Unstoppable Rage: Unstoppable is right — Warriors can effectively heal their wounds and ignore crowd control effects by focusing their anger. The Berserker Rage ability in particular shrugs off a number of CC effects, including the unique ability to break a Rogue's Sap in PvP.
- You Will Not Evade Me: The Bastion ability for Warriors is the "Spear of Bastion". By throwing the spear, it creates a damaging area around itself for a few seconds. Enemies caught in the impact zone of the spear are tethered to it, unable to escape and are damaged over time.
Introduced in Wrath of the Lich King
Roles: Tank, Melee DPS.
Heralds of Death, Harbingers of Destruction, Ebon Riders of Darkness...Words cannot describe how powerful and how terrible these undead warriors are. Clad in heavy armor as dark as the dead of the night and wielding wickedly fashioned weapons glowing with runes, they represent the pinnacle of the might of the Scourge and were often powerful paladins and knights felled under the onslaught during the Scourge Invasion. Risen through dark Necromancy, these warriors are imbued with the mightiest powers of the Scourge and often serve as leaders and lieutenants for the Lich King, sowing death and destruction in their wake. Frost sharpens their strikes; blood fortifies their bodies; and undeath allows them to erupt in unholy rage in the heat of battle. A thousand atrocities are etched in the eyes of every death knight, and foes who gaze into them too long will feel the warmth pulled from their bodies, replaced with cold steel.
When the Lich Kings control of his death knights was broken, his former champions sought revenge for the horrors committed under his command. After their vengeance was won, the death knights found themselves without a cause and without a home. One by one they trickled into the land of the living in search of a new purpose.
Since the Scourge wasn't picky in who they raised, looking only at an individual's deeds, bloodthirst and willingness to be the Lich King's elite soldiers, every race is available to be a Death Knight, with Worgen and Goblin having been retroactively justified as being Arugal Worgen from Silverpine Forest instead of Gilneas, and Goblins being from the Steamwheedle Cartel instead of the Bilgewater. In the wake of the 4th war leading into Shadowlands, Bolvar had to break the Godzilla Threshold by once again having new Death Knights called back to life to fight off Sylvanas and the Jailer's schemes, justifying Allied Race Death Knights as well.
Now free from the control of the Lich King, the Death Knights assumed control of Acherus, a floating necropolis, as their base of operations. Calling themselves the Knights of the Ebon Blade, their members worked alongside the Horde and Alliance to continue safeguarding the world. During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, they would even reluctantly ally themselves with the new Lich King to ensure the safety of Azeroth.
- And Then John Was a Zombie: They died fighting the Lich King's forces, only to join them.
- Animate Dead: Unholy Death Knights can summon various undead minions to do their bidding, including up to two permanent pets at the same time. In Legion all varieties of Death Knights can do this on certain quests.
- Anti-Hero: Although much of the hero they used to be after their starting experience, they nonetheless use their formidable and terrifying powers to achieve what they will and stop at nothing to have their revenge at the Lich King.
- Anti-Magic: Death Knights have an Anti-Magic Shell that will not only absorb incoming spells and elemental attacks, but convert the damage into runic power to perform counterattacks. They are also capable of forming an Anti-Magic Zone to protect their allies, and unleashing Necrotic Strikes which cancel out healing magic wasted on their foes.
- Badass Baritone: The unique Death Knight voice is low, heavy and echoes with awesomeness, reminding their foes what formidable opponents they are.
- Bad with the Bone: The Blood specialization takes a focus on this with the spells Bonestorm and Marrowrend.
- Bag of Spilling: Averted. Death Knights in lore were once heroes that already did work, and then were trained by the Lich King. As such they start at level 8 rather then 1 (previously level 55 before Shadowlands reduced the number of levels).
- Black Knight: They are vicious warriors adept in necromancy, often wearing dark armor and wielding massive runeblades.
- Black Magic: Death Knights wield the power of the Scourge and their magic is used to sow destruction, pain and death among the living.
- Blood Magic: Blood death knights are vampiric warriors who take the blood of enemies and use it to keep themselves battleworthy.
- Blood Knight: Within the lore, Death Knights suffer wracking pains whenever they aren't inflicting suffering on others.
- Commanding Coolness: Years before other adventurers managed this in Warlords of Draenor, during the Death Knight starting zone, the player is promoted to Scourge Commander for their One-Man Army annihilation of the Scarlet Crusade.
- Chill of Undeath: The Icebound Fortitude spell allows Death Knights to freeze their blood to become more resilient towards damage.
- Also a common motif: Many undead creatures associated with the Scourge, such as Deathchargers, Frostbrood drakes and player Death Knights, have a blue glow from "cold flames" used to animate them.
- The Dark Arts: Necromancy is considered highly dangerous and is forbidden in most cultures in the World of Warcraft. It is even sometimes referred to as this by members of Dalaran.
- Dark Is Not Evil: They prove to ultimately be heroic after their intro experience, although the Ebon Blade remains somewhat dubiously so.
- Determinator: They are hell bent on seeking vengeance on the Lich King and the Scourge.
- The Dead Have Eyes: Death Knights' are gorgeously blue.
- The Dragon: As the Deathlord of the Ebon Blade, they are second only to the Lich King, Bolvar Fordragon.
- The Dreaded: It is stated in the book Death Knights of Acherus that they left no survivors in their onslaught and completely devastated their enemies, with the player character being responsible for most of this almost single-handedly. The book in fact strongly implies that when the player character was bound to the Scourge, they were one of the most violent, cruel, and brutal death knights to ever exist.Soulless killing machine. No remorse. No regrets. Has killed more Scarlet Crusaders, destroyed more lives, and caused more chaos than any death knight before [them].
- Dual Wield: Frost Death Knights have the ability to wield one weapon in each hand.
- Early-Installment Weirdness:
- The first-generation death knights that appear in Warcraft II are undead human knights whose corpses are possessed by spirits of deceased orc warlocks. In essence they weren't so much knights as they were horse mounted liches. Only third-generation death knights have shown any grasp of Frost magic; in fact, several death knights shown the Warcraft series prior to Wrath of the Lich King, such as Teron Gorefiend (an example of the above) and Thane Korth'azz, have been heavily associated with Fire or Shadow magic.
- Gameplay wise, the three specs for Death Knights have been the same. However, originally all three specs were theoretically capable of tanking if they took the right talents from the old talent tree, with frost focusing on defensive boosts, blood focusing on health draining, and unholy focusing on debuffing the enemy and sacrificing their ghouls for HP or shields in a pinch. Naturally mixing and matching the talents made any of the three specs way too strong at content, so starting in Cataclysm Blood Death Knight (the most popular one for tanking near the end of Wrath because of its self-healing) was made the sole tank, while the other two specs found their niche as different types of DPS.
- Evil Is Deathly Cold: Basically Death Knights are a frost-encrusted walking death machine on steroids.
- Fallen Hero: Due to being raised as the Lich King's servants. Explicitly pointed out in the intro narration for new Death Knights "A hero... that's what you once were."
- Flying Weapon: Blood Death Knights can create a Dancing Rune Weapon that will fight on its own, copying its creator's attacks while also parrying strikes for them.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: For non-allied races who undergo the original Wrath of the Lich King introductory questline, the player starts as a newly raised neophyte, and while quickly proving themselves as a One-Man Army as a member of the Scourge, they are well below more experienced Death Knights like Thassarian and Darion Mograine. Over the course of expansions, the player gains a terrifying mastery over death until the only one ahead of them is the Lich King — in Legion, the extremely strong Four Horsemen don't just answer to the player, they're created and raised by the player. And during the class mount questline, the player raises an extremely powerful dragon mount, almost identical to Arthas raising Sindragosa as the Lich King, so the Lich King might not be as far ahead as one would initially imagine...
- Gameplay and Story Integration: Pandaren and Allied Racenote Death Knights lack the Veteran of the Third War passive skill, and instead have the functionally identical Veteran of the Fourth War skill, in order to match with lore in that these Death Knights were only raised after Battle for Azeroth.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: When you gaze into those blue eyes... You're already dead.
- HeelFace Turn: At the end of their starting quest line they return to their former heroic ways. Mostly.
- Hellish Horse: Death Knights' will gain the Acherus Deathcharger after the quest Into The Realm of Shadows, which essentially involves hijacking the horse from a other-dimensional horseman. The charger has a curved pair of goat horns, glowing blue eyes, hooves wreathed in blue flames and is clad in dark armor decorated with skulls. Additionally, skeletal warhorses are also popular with death knights (see Baron Rivendare and both generations of the Four Horsemen).
- An Ice Person: Compared to those mages who study the properties of ice to manipulate them as methods of offense, death knights are the incarnation of winter itself. Their mere presence brings a chill upon a normal man's heart and when they strike, their frost-encrusted blades howl with the might of winter. Frost Death Knights are particularly adept in this field, calling in arctic winds and winter storms to wear down crowds of foes.
- Implacable Man: Though not very fast to start with, some of their abilities make them hard to slow down: Wraith Walk resists snares, Icebound Fortitude cancels most stuns, Pillar of Frost No-Sells knockbacks, and Anti-Magic Shell is a Swiss army knife for ignoring control effects.
- Knight in Sour Armor: They were killed in combat, raised as a mind-controlled undead slave, sow death and destruction on innocent (and some not so innocent Scarlet Crusade) people and were forced to murder their best friend. Then they were abandoned by the Lich King and after they rejoined their respective factions, they were seen as monsters and traitors. Such experiences made them cynical about the world but they nonetheless strive to be the heroes that they used to be.
- Last Chance Hit Point: The Purgatory talent allows them to absorb fatal damage (and any damage after) as well as incoming healing. If the absorbed healing outweighs the absorbed damage at any point within the next 3 seconds, they live; if not, they die. Of course, there's nothing to stop them from being killed immediately after Purgatory saves them in the case of a narrow margin.
- Made of Iron: Not technically though. The main reason that they could shrug off injury that normal people could not bear is, well, they're dead.
- Mage Killer: Mages have always had difficulties when dealing with Death Knights due to their Anti-Magic capabilities. They also have access to a Dark Simulacrum which can copy enemy spells, to turn them against their original casters or redirect their benefits to the Death Knight. In the past, Death Knights could even convert regeneration effects placed on their foes into diseases to kill them faster.
- Magic Knight: Death Knights are the harbingers of destruction and possess expertise in necromancy and dark magic, being able to draw power from blood, evoke the power of the winter chill or spread doom and fear with deadly plagues and diseases.
- Unholy death knights are particularly noteworthy in this regard, trading heavy melee damage for the ability to weave diseases, necromancy and shadow magic at a longer range, albeit not dealing damage as efficiently as they could in melee. The Clawing Shadows talent can replace their main attack, complementing their Death Coil for ranged barrages, allowing them to keep up considerable ranged assaults for short but frequent periods.
- Mind Rape: The Bastion ability for Death Knights is "Shackle the Unworthy", a damage mitigation and damage over time debuff described as the Death Knight forcing a victim to experience all of their worst memories at once.
- Mighty Glacier: Death Knights have the fewest mobility skills in the game, and generally aren't very fast. However, they don't need to be.
- Mouth of Sauron: As the Deathlord in Legion, player Death Knights receive guidance from Bolvar the Lich King on how to best prepare to strike back at the Burning Legion and relay his goals to the rest of the Ebon Blade.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: The Maldraxxus ability for Death Knights is "Abomination Limb", which causes a Death Knight to grow a third arm that thrashes around wildly, damaging anything nearby.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- The Maw of the Damned, a two-handed axe for Blood death knights, a soul-leeching weapon adorned with the conscious skull of the crazed demon who crafted it.
- Apocalypse, a two-handed demonic sword for Unholy death knights, capable of summoning its own army of the dead and previously used by dreadlords to spread a Hate Plague.
- The Blades of the Fallen Prince, a pair of icy blades for Frost death knights, reforged from the shards of Frostmourne after the fall of the Lich King Arthas Menethil — and still haunted by him.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Aside from Death Knight itself, the player character also receives the title of Deathlord in Legion.
- Necromancer: Death Knights, being the Lich King's champions, are some of the best necromancers in his ranks. While all Death Knights can learn to resurrect their allies, the Unholy specialization has the best use of this, being able to summon ghouls and skeletons as permanent minions, transform ghouls into monstrosities, animate gargoyles and even raise a whole undead army on his/her own.
- Never Live It Down: An In-Universe case. The red dragons will not forget the Legion Class Hall Mount questline, and would not miss a chance to remind Death Knight players of all the red dragons they killed just to get a mount. As a result, Death Knight players get unique interactions with certain red dragon NPCs (particularly those related to quests) where the animosity is as clear as day.
- Night of the Living Mooks: Army of the Dead, formerly a signature skill available to all Death Knights, now exclusive to the Unholy specialization. In Legion, the Unholy Death Knight's artifact allows them to summon up to a whopping twenty different minions at one time* — although only a couple will last, with the majority exploding after a few moments.
- Non-Indicative Name: Despite the name, several of the second generation Death Knights, such as Arthas Menethil, weren't actually dead. Functionally, they slid from living into undeath, but they never experienced the actual dying part. However, both the first and third generations of Death Knights are reanimated corpses. The first generation was comprised of the souls of the Shadow Council members inserted in the bodies of Human knights, while the third generation are heroes and champions who fell in battle against the Scourge and were later raised amongst their numbers.
- One-Man Army: During the Death Knight starting zone, the player character almost single-handedly annihilates the Scarlet Crusade. They only get even more powerful from here.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: They completed their HeelFace Turn at the end of their questline and uses the power of the Scourge to rain hell on the Lich King and his minions.
- This also applies after Wrath of the Lich King, where their horrifying abilities are used against those that threaten the world.
- Plague Master: Unholy death knights specialize in weakening and damaging their enemies with diseases while their undead minions deal the fatal blow.
- Psychic Strangle: The abilities "Strangulate" & "Asphyxiate", used to interrupt spell casting. Asphyxiate in particular lifts the enemy off the ground for 5 seconds and stuns them while they clutch at their throat.
- Pummeling the Corpse: For a bit of bonus humiliation, Death Knights can learn to cast Corpse Explosion, which causes an enemy corpse to explode into a red cloud of Ludicrous Gibs, leaving only ribs and bloody meat behind. This used to be an actual attack when first introduced, the explosion causing AOE damage to other mobs in the area or by exploding the Death Knight's Ghoul Minion, but it's limited usefulness when soloing and general awkwardness led to it over time being removed and reintroduced as a non-damaging "for fun" ability you have to go out of your way to learn.
- Skeletons in the Coat Closet: Death Knight armors are often dark and grim in color tone and adorned with spikes and sometimes, skulls and bones.
- Spell Blade: The Death Knight's calling card and magical focus is their magically empowered Runeblade. Frost and Unholy Death Knights in particular can infuse the blade with elemental energy for some attacks, although all three specializations will use it to discharge their spells.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: The dark nature and awful powers of a Death Knight makes for a difficult and uneasy alliance with light characters.
- In Legion, the Silver Hand do not get on well with the Ebon Blade after the latter invades the former. While this is mostly put aside to fight the Burning Legion, it is definitely not forgotten about.
- In Battle for Azeroth and Shadowlands, the red dragonflight will work with the player who invaded their sanctum in Legion, but to say they are reluctant allies would be a little bit of an understatement. Even the highly compassionate and forgiving Alexstraza in Shadowlands is cold and barely suppressing her anger if you complete the Night Fae questline and have your class mount.
- The Undead: Essentially.
- The Unfettered: In Legion, the Knights of the Ebon Blade elect to "do what the living cannot". This includes everything up to storming Light's Hope Chapel again in an attempt to raise the fallen Tirion Fordring into undeath, although it doesn't work. Not that it was actually intended to work in the first place.
- Undeathly Pallor: Death Knights' skin color can vary from pale to eerie green to pitch black (most likely depending on how long they've died). However, death knights can also have normal skin color.
- Walking Wasteland: When you're capable of defiling the very land around you or freezing the air in a matter of seconds, you qualify.
- Villain Protagonist: They start out this way in the introductory storyline, doing things like murdering fleeing peasants and executing an Argent Dawn prisoner (the latter being a "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight). After rejoining their faction, they become an Anti-Hero, though there are times where the player slips dangerously close back to this.
- You Will Not Evade Me: Death Knights have quite a few ways to keep a target pinned so they can unleash hell upon them. A Death Knight's most notorious ability is "Death Grip", which grabs an enemy and forces them beside you. Other abilities like "Chains of Ice" and "Asphyxiate" also work to keep enemies in place so you can slice them to bits.
Introduced in Mist of Pandaria
Roles: Tank, Melee DPS, Healer.
When the pandaren were subjugated by the mogu centuries ago, it was the monks that brought hope to a seemingly dim future. Restricted from using weapons by their slave masters, these pandaren instead focused on harnessing their chi and learning weaponless combat. When the opportunity for revolution struck, they were well-trained to throw off the yoke of oppression.
Masters of bare-handed combat, monks never rely solely on the need to have a weapon in their hands to defend against their enemies. Although most widely known to the outside world for their fearsome jabs and flying kicks, they refuse to limit themselves to a single method of combat. Many monks prefer instead to soak it up and seem to revel in the intoxicating effect of absorbing blow after blow while their companions press the attack. Other monks specialize in calling upon the restorative power of the mists to balance the good and bad energy within people, returning them to good health and fortune.
Monks bring a unique martial arts style to any fight, and harness an exotic form of magical energy thats unfamiliar to those who practice other arcane arts. They seek spiritual balance in life and in combat, and as dangerous as Monks can be on the battlefield, theyre rarely looking to pick a fight without just cause. They view the world through a different lens, finding power through serenity and inner peacethen expressing it through artful combat techniques and powers that mend life. Perhaps most surprisingly, Monks are also adept at producing powerful brews they consume to aid them in battle.
The Pandaren weren't picky with who they trained to be monks, the ability to wield one's Chi is an ability inherit to every creature, even the Forsaken, so nearly every race is capable of being a Monk. The only exceptions are Worgen, Goblins and Lightforged Draenei, who are all time-locked in their starting experiences so Pandaren weren't able to be retroactively added to their starts to teach people how to fight as them.
During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, the monastery atop the Peak of Serenity was invaded and destroyed by demonic invaders. The survivors fled to the Temple of Five Dawns on the Wandering Isle and dubbed themselves the Order of the Broken Temple, vowing to avenge their fallen brethren and defeat the Legion.
- Addiction-Powered: It is heavily implied both in lore and in game that monks are very fond of consuming alcoholic beverages. However, only Brewmasters use it as part of their fighting style.
- Booze-Based Buff: Fortifying Brew, Nimble Brew, Tigereye Brew etc.
- Animal Motifs: Monks have various animal themes based on the August Celestials. Windwalkers fight with a Tiger style, Brewmasters fight with a Drunken Ox style, and Mistweavers can use either a Serpent style or a Crane style.
- Ass-Kicking Pose: Monks have many unique attack animations and many resemble the stances of famous Chinese kung-fu styles.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: Most core abilities forgo the weapons in favor of strong kicks or punches, but fist weapons are incorporated into Tiger Palm and Fists of Fury, and Jab changed depending on the monk's equipped weapon. It can also be played straight as it the only class that can transmog away their one-handed weapons.
- Booze-Based Buff: Brewmaster Monks are Drunken Masters that heavily use these in their gameplay.
- Call It Karma: Windwalker Monks have a defensive ability called Touch of Karma, that prevents all damage taken, up to half of their own maximum health, and deals 70% of that damage to a selected target. A talent called Good Karma adds a self heal equivalent to the damage it deals.
- Combat Medic: Mistweaver Monk have the option of using melee combat to fuel their chi to empower their healing spells. This is often called the Crane style, and called 'Fistweaving' by the community.
- Combat Pragmatist: The Leg Sweep ability, which stuns all nearby enemies with a sweeping leg.
- Diving Kick: Flying Serpent Kick grants the single highest distance of a single ability in the game (A Demon Hunter can travel more raw distance by comboing mobility abilities). Flying Serpent Kick travels even faster than most flying mounts, and it can be stopped early to kick the ground, slowing all enemies at the stopping point. This makes it so the Windwalker, if skilled, never overshoots their target.
- Dynamic Entry: If the Windwalker uses it to enter combat.
- Drunken Master: Brewmaster tanks invoke this, dodging attacks and shrugging off whatever damage they do take simply by their own drunkenness. They also have the Keg Smash ability, which douses enemies in brew and forces them into drunkenness, slowing them and making them vulnerable to Breath Of Fire.
- Dual Wield: Windwalkers and Brewmasters are capable of this.
- Elemental Powers: Windwalkers have the 'Storm, Earth, and Fire' ability, which splits the Monk into three distinct spirits reflecting each element. The player only controls one, and the other two copy all of the Monk's attacks. This is a descendant of the Brewmaster Ultimate ability from Warcraft 3 with the same name. They also utilize some lightning and fire magic, and Mistweavers heal with, well, mist, which is water.
- Hurricane Kick: Spinning Crane Kick is an archetypal example.
- I Shall Taunt You: The Provoke ability serves as a Monk's main taunting ability. Brewmasters use it mainly, but Mistweavers and Windwalkers have access to it as well. Notably, it causes the taunted target to run faster at the monk.
- Kamehame Hadoken: Chi Blast ability. In which the monk concentrates a giant ball of chi energy and pushes it out, dealing damage to all enemies on the line of the attack while healing the monk.
- Ki Manipulation: Many of the combat abilities of Windwalker monks (Fists of Fury, Spinning Crane Kick etc.) are based on Chi. All monks use chi magic to power their abilities, but only Windwalkers actually have Chi as a resource.
- Lightning Bruiser: The Windwalker and Brewmaster Monks in essence, but the Mistweaver also has elements of it. Monks are easily the most mobile and agile class in the game, even moreso than Rogues and only challenged by Demon Hunters (Who can cover more raw distance faster, but the Monk has access to more frequent and precise mobility). Roll is the Monk's main mobility ability, and is a short but fast dash with a short cooldown. It can be augmented with the Chi Torpedo talent, extending the distance and increasing the Monk's movement speed after. The Tiger's Lust talent is an ability that grants the target a dramatic boost in speed, but the Monk can also cast it on allies. Transcendence causes the player to leave a spirit behind at the casted location, and the Monk can swap places with the spirit with a brief cooldown. And Flying Serpent Kick, for Windwalker Monks, is described above.
- Living Statue: Well, probably not actually alive and more akin to a Shaman's totem, Brewmaster and Mistweaver Monks can summon stationary, magical statues that aid them in combat. The Ox Statue for Brewmasters pulses threat, and using the Monk's Provoke ability on it causes the statue to mass-taunt all enemies in a moderate radius. The Jade Serpent Statue for Mistweavers, constantly channels healing on allies the Mistweaver targets with Soothing Mist.
- Martial Arts Staff: Staffs are another common weapon for Monks.
- Mechanically Unusual Class: Most melee classes can easily remove their basic Attack command from their hot bars because of the game's auto-attack. Not so much Monks, because their basic Attack command is their primary means of generating Chi. Likewise, they're one of the few tanking classes that doesn't require plate.
- Meditation Powerup: Monks have mediation as a major theme. Brewmaster Monks have access to the Zen Meditation ability, which channels but reduces all damage taken by a major amount, but moving or taking damage from a physical attack interrupts it early. It can either be used to dramatically reduce magic damage for an extended period, or reduce the damage of a single, massive physical attack incoming.
- Mysterious Mist: Healing mists are the primary vector in which Mistweavers heal and support their allies.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- Fu Zan, the Wanderer's Companion, a staff for Brewmaster monks, once wielded by the Titanic watcher Freya as she created the Wild Gods.
- Sheilun, Staff of the Mists, a staff for Mistweaver monks, blessed by the August Celestials and used by Emperor Shaohao to cloak Pandaria in mists.
- The Fists of the Heavens, a pair of bladed fist weapons infused with power stolen from the Elemental Lord Al'akir.
- Our Dragons Are Different: Each time we refer to a 'serpent' in this section of the article, it's an Eastern-style dragon, not an actual snake. This is because the Cloud Serpents in the Warcraft universe are distinct from the actual Dragonflights, which are more Western-styled dragons. Yu'lon, the Jade Serpent, is a Cloud Serpent Celestial and her wisdom and patience is the main inspiration for the Mistweaver Monk specialization.
- Playing with Fire: Brewmaster Monks are able to throw burning kegs, and one of their signature abilities is Breath Of Fire, which has them consume and spit out a torrent of flames. If the target was doused in ale by Keg Smash, Breath Of Fire ignites the ale to deal constant damage and apply a damage-reduction debuff.
- Pressure Point: The Paralysis ability is a Monk's main version of crowd control, intended to be a focused pressure point attack that halts an enemy's muscles. The ability's animation invokes the imagery of acupuncture-like needles.
- Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs: The Fists of Fury ability for Windwalker channels a barrage of punches at all targets in front of the Monk.
- Shock and Awe: Crackling Jade Lightning, a ranged ability that is primarily used either by ranged Mistweavers to deal damage during downtime, or by Windwalkers and Brewmasters to pull ranged enemies. Also the Thunder Focus Tea for Mistweavers.
- Spectacular Spinning: Spinning Crane Kick for Windwalker and Mistweaver, and also the Rushing/Refreshing Jade Wind talent, which either deals damage for Brewmasters or heals allies for Mistweavers. Also, the Chi Torpedo, which replaces the Monk's Roll ability, having them spin forward in a spiral that increases their movement speed after it completes.
- Soul Power:
- The magic Pandaren call 'Chi' is explicitly related to the same spiritual magic that Shamans tap into. However, instead of using the magic to communicate with outside spirits, Monks use it to focus on strengthening their own spirit, using meditation and introspection to achieve peace and mastery.
- The ability Transcendence, one of the last abilities a Monk learns while leveling, reflects your Monk's mastery of their own spirit. On cast, the Monk's body and spirit split, with you controlling the body (Driven by instinct and muscle memory) while the spirit remains where you used the ability (Meditating in the air, but a glyph can have the spirit stand in a fighting pose). When used again, Transcendence allows the Monk's body and spirit to switch places, further augmenting the Monk's mobility.
- Summon Magic: Each Monk spec has access to a summoning talent that summons an effigy of one of the August Celestials. Windwalkers can summon a Tiger effigy in the image of Xuen, the White Tiger, which deals damage to enemies with powerful claws and lightning strikes. Brewmasters can summon an Ox effigy in the image of Niuzao, the Black Ox, which taunts enemies and deals Ao E damage with stomps. Mistweavers can summon an effigy of Yu'lon, the Jade Serpent, which heals allies with a restorative mist breath, or of Chi-Ji, the Red Crane, which dashes between allies, healing them on contact.
- Supernatural Martial Arts: Monks are adept at interweaving physical combat with their unique magics.
- Touch of Death: Directly invoked, named, and Zig Zagged. Touch of Death is an ability that allows the monk to instantly kill a target with less health than them, or deal hefty damage to powerful enemies near death. There's a glyph that causes the monk to automatically bow after killing an enemy with it.
- Unnecessary Combat Roll: Roll is one of the Monk's signature abilities and what makes Monks one of the most mobile terrors in PvP combat. It has two charges baseline and can be augmented by talents to have more.
Introduced in Legion
Roles: Tank, Melee DPS.
Demon hunters, elven disciples of Illidan Stormrage, uphold a dark legacy, one that frightens their allies and enemies alike. The Illidari embrace fel and chaotic magicsenergies that have long threatened the world of Azerothbelieving them necessary to challenge the Burning Legion. Wielding the powers of demons theyve slain, they develop demonic features that incite revulsion and dread in fellow elves.
Demon hunters ritually blind themselves in exchange for spectral sight that enables them to better sense their prey. This enhanced awareness, together with their great agility and magical prowess, makes demon hunters unpredictable adversaries. An Illidaris quarry has much to fear.
Most Illidari are adept at interweaving their fel magics and their physical aptitude into their fighting style, running circles around their prey as they wear them down with lightning-fast glaive attacks and controlled bursts of chaos magic. Their fury comes to a peak in their Metamorphosis, a terrifying winged form that magnifies their already formidable powers. Others find power in their pain, taking the frontline and soaking up damage only to deal it back in return. These warriors refine their magical abilities, slowly tearing apart the souls of their enemies and fortifying their bodies, and taking on the form of massive spiked demons to maximize their potential.
A mix of borderline-xenophobic pride towards Elves and only having Night Elves who sought Illidan out and Blood Elves who joined the ranks after Kael'thas allied with him means that only those two races were given Demon Hunter training, and thus are locked exclusively to those races.
During the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, Maiev Shadowsong releases the captured Illidari from the Vault of the Wardens to join the fight to save Azeroth. Operating out of a captured Legion ship called the Fel Hammer, the Illidari would prove instrumental in retrieving the soul of Illidan.
- The Anti-Nihilist: On some level, this is what drives Demon Hunters, as described by the Illidan novel. All Illidan-trained Demon Hunters see a vision of the Legion's atrocities across the cosmos and soon realise they are dwarfed by its pure scale, yet they continue to fight regardless.
- Armor-Piercing Attack: Demon Hunters primarily employ Chaos damage in their attacks, which counts as a combination of every elemental damage type in the game.
- Badass Army: Demon Hunters are perhaps rightfully considered the most dangerous neutral force to ever come from Azeroth. Absurdly powerful, near-immortal, usually unhinged, and capable of permanently killing demons. Yet all the same, they've dealt multiple crushing blows against the Legion, who before Demon Hunters came into existence had never encountered a significant counterattack from a planet they invaded.
- Blade Below the Shoulder: Aside from the Warglaives of Azzinoth, Demon Hunters have exclusive access to Warglaive-type weapons.
- Blindfolded Vision: All Demon Hunters are blind, their vision instead coming from a demonic true sight. Though for players the blindfold is optional, as you can go without and let the world see the felfire burning in otherwise hollow eye sockets. Nefarian's new class call for them mocks it: "Demon Hunters! How odd, covering your eyes like that. Doesn't it make it hard to see the world around you?"
- Body Horror: No, elves aren't supposed to grow horns. Some of the skin options also give them scales.
- Breath Weapon: Vengeance Demon Hunters can breathe a gout of felfire out in a cone in front of them to sear their victims.
- Combat Parkour: Havoc Demon Hunters employ their Fel Rush, Vengeful Retreat, and Metamorphosis effects as part of their regular attack rotation. These abilities grant them some of the highest mobility in the game, and allows them to perform Sequence Breaking in some older dungeons. This mobility allows them to cover the most distance in the shortest time of any class, but the Monk still outclasses them in quick, frequent, and more precise mobility.
- They also have the Double Jump and Glide abilities, which aren't very useful for actual effective mobility, but have niche uses and reflects their agile and quick nature.
- Conservation of Ninjutsu: Fittingly for champions who are made to fight against the endless crashing waves of demons, both specs of demon hunters in different ways excel when fighting numerous enemies at once.
- To start with, both specs with different mechanics knock soul shards loose from the enemy, these fragments when consumed will heal the Demon Hunter for various amounts depending on their spec and ensures that as long as the first enemy dies, they'll be healed nearly to full HP, or even all the way, allowing them to continue fighting without worry. Both specs also have a PvP talent called Solitude which increases their damage when no allies are nearby but multiple enemies are.
- Havoc Demon Hunters excel at fighting multiple enemies at once, nearly ALL of their abilities are either AoE or have a cleave component, their special artifact ability is a specialized AoE, Blade Dance is competent enough as both an AoE and a single target effect, Chaos Nova stuns every enemy it hits and looses a soul fragment from them with an artifact ability, and multiple of their legendary armors empower these further like reducing the cooldown on Eye Beam depending on number of enemies hit, or empowering their Fel Rush to do more damage.
- Vengeance Demon Hunters specialize in holding the attention of multiple enemies, like Havoc nearly all of their skills have an AoE component to them, with their main Pain spending ability having a cleave component, and their main threat ability being a passive fire aura that is always drawing attention, and their sigils place down AoE fields that has no target limit, making sure every enemy it touches will be affected by it.
- Demon Slaying: Demon Hunters gain several bonuses when fighting against demons. Their starting Warglaives increase their attack power against demons, and their Soul Fragments empower their damage if received from demons.
- Determinator: One of the marks of the Illidari. Those remaining on the Fel Hammer have personally suffered at the hands of both the Legion and the Wardens, watched their allies tortured and slain by demons or worse, and know full-well that their enemy is nigh-infinite — and are still fighting for Azeroth.
- Difficult, but Awesome: Demon Hunters rely on reaction timing and the advantage of speed to be effective. Havoc Demon Hunters have some of the most narrow Area of Effect attacks in the game, requiring enemies to line up perfectly for the best mileage. The Blade Dance ability gives all Demon Hunters a 100% chance to dodge incoming attacks for 1 second, allowing them to bypass big hits completely if used properly — but Illidan have mercy if you play one with server lag.
- Dodge the Bullet: Havoc Demon Hunters' primary defense comes from avoiding attacks entirely, be it from dashing out of area attacks or boosting their Dodge chance. They can even create fields of shadow that allow their allies to avoid attacks entirely.
- Dual Wielding: Demon Hunters are only proficient in wielding one-handed weapons, and they cannot use shields. Their primary focus is on wielding a pair of Warglaives.
- Eye Beams: All Demon Hunters gain this ability during the introductory experience, but only Havoc gets to keep it.
- Eye Patch Of Power: Demons Hunters get special customization options in the form of different blindfolds.
- Fragile Speedster: Havoc Demon Hunters are Agility-based attackers with, at the time of their inclusion, the highest burst mobility in the game. However, they have very limited access to self-healing and no resistance to crowd control; if a Havoc Demon Hunter slows down, they'll go down easily.
- Gameplay and Story Segregation: Demon hunters belong to a neutral faction (Illidari), and they actually don't care if one of their members is a night elf or a blood elf (Or a murloc). Of course, in gameplay they have to work with the faction of their respective race in a PvP.
- Guttural Growler: Male Demon Hunters of both races have unique voice clips that are a few octaves deeper than normal Elves' and have a scratchy, feral sounding rumble behind their words.
- Incendiary Exponent: Vengeance Demon Hunters gain Immolation Aura, which sets them on fire.
- Informed Attribute: The Slayer is supposedly just as powerful as Illidan, but he/she never shows it.
- Inhuman Eye Concealers: Like Illidan, Demon Hunters have spectral sight, their eyes replaced by burning balls of felfire. Most Demon Hunters hide their eyes with a variety of masks and blindfolds, though some choose to leave their eyes uncovered.
- Instant Runes: Vengeance's Sigil spells, which carve large runes into the ground.
- Knockback Evasion: Clever players have come to find that their Glide ability allows them to negate the momentum of effects that would render them airborne.
- Last Chance Hit Point: Vengeance Demon Hunters can take a talent to restore some health and enter Super Mode when they take fatal damage.
- Lightning Bruiser: Vengeance is one of the most mobile specializations in the game. It is also a tank with ridiculous self-healing and sustain potential fueled by excellent AoE ability.
- Named Weapons: The artifact weapons in Legion:
- The Twinblades of the Deceiver, a pair of warglaives for Havoc demon hunters, infused with the power of Kil'jaeden and taken from a traitor to the Illidari.
- The Aldrachi Warblades, a set of bladed tonfa for Vengeance demon hunters, taken by Sargeras from the champion of one of the first races to resist — and be wiped out by — the Legion.
- Not Quite Flight: Demon Hunters have the ability "Glide" that causes them to sprout a pair of wings after a Double Jump to descend slowly at an angle.
- Playing with Fire: Another common element in their spells, prominently in Vengeance.
- Power Gives You Wings: All Demon Hunters can unfurl a set of wings allowing them to safely glide long distances. Havoc's Metamorphosis briefly transforms the user into the iconic "wings, horns, hooves" demon form.
- The Power of Hate: This is ultimately what makes a Demon Hunter capable of surviving their brutal training. The demon they choose to bind to themselves is encouraged to be one they have a personal vendetta against and is also what tempers them to let their power not consume them. As the quote above says, there's a bit of disdain from Demon Hunters who pursue the path out of an Anti-Heroic hatred for Demons towards those that pursue the art for the sake of power above all else.
- Power Tattoo: They work as a way of regulating a Demon Hunter's power.
- Resurrective Immortality: While this is true of all player characters, only the Demon Hunter has it as Gameplay and Story Integration. During the introductory zone for the Demon Hunters, you have to sacrifice people at different points during the story to power portals for armies to march through. At the last portal, you can choose to sacrifice yourself rather than the intended victim. If you do, you go to the graveyard per norm for the game, but a surprised Illidan contacts you mentally, informing you that your soul is now demonic, so like any demon, your "death" only sends your soul to the Twisting Nether until you can find a suitable host to inhabit. And, if it hasn't been too long and in its good enough condition, you can reclaim your old body, which is still a viable container, as it only died recently. Also foreshadows Illidan's resurrection.
- Sealed Inside a Person-Shaped Can: Demon Hunters act as the "can" in this situation. Part of the ritual to become a Demon Hunter is to kill and consume the essence of a demon they have a personal grudge against. This traps the demon soul inside the Demon Hunter to act as a source of power while denying the Legion another soldier.
- Spikes of Doom: Vengeance Demon Hunters can Metamorph into a spiked, flightless demon. While in their elven form, they can also invoke these same spikes on their bodies to reduce incoming damage.
- Super Mode: All Demon Hunters have one in the form of "Metamorphosis".
- Training from Hell: A Demon Hunter's training is absolutely brutal. As detailed in the Illidan novel, a Demon Hunter's training ends with killing a demon of their choice, drinking its blood and eating its heart, after which Illidan causes a reaction that puts them into a dream where they have to do the same to the mental projection of the demon now in their body. After that's done, they're shown horrific visions of the Legion's victories, worlds destroyed over infinite realities and timelines while the demon taunts them, the horror of this is what causes Demon Hunters to put their eyes out. After that, the Demon Hunter wakes up blind and frenzied until their spectral sight kicks in, upon which they've found they've grown aspects of the demon they consumed. According to the book, only one in five elves make it to the end, the ones who don't die due to the brutal physical training or not being prepared for what the demon shows them often commit suicide out of insanity or unwillingness to live as a demon.
- The Unfettered: Their motto is "Nothing is more important than the Legion's destruction"; this begins with siphoning demonic power and sacrificing their allies. Not surprising, given their mentor's rather... dubious methods of fighting the Legion.
- Victor Gains Loser's Powers: Defeating major demons throughout their starting zone grants them more powers.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: Male Demon Hunters get this by default for all chest armor, to show off their Power Tattoos.
- Winged Humanoid: All Demon Hunters can grow leathery wings for gliding. Havoc Demon Hunters also have wings in their "Metamorphosis" forms to emulate Illidan.
- X-Ray Vision: Their true sight functions as this when focused on it, allowing the Demon Hunter to see any living creature through walls and making stealth completely useless. However, to keep this ability balanced in PvP, using it slows the demon hunter to a crawl.
- Your Soul Is Mine!: Demon Hunters can cleave off fragments of their victims' souls, devouring them to restore their own health; if the victim is a demon, their powers grow as well. A recurring motif with demon-related weapons and technology is that they require souls to power, which the Illidari have been willing to exploit... usually by feeding said weapons and technology the souls of its creators.
Introduced in Dragonflight
Roles: Caster DPS, Healer.
Ten thousand years ago, before the Sundering, Neltharion, before his fall into madness and transformation into Deathwing, once worked on an experiment to create the perfect soldiers for the Dragonflights by fusing raw draconic essence with the ancestors of modern-day mortals. The results of his experimentation were the Dracthyr, a race of humanoid dragons different from Drakonid or Dragonspawn in many notable ways, but most especially in their ability to call upon all of the different Flights' powers, becoming powerful spellcasters known as Evokers. When the Dragon Isles were sealed away on the eve of the Sundering, the Dracthyr too fell into a deep slumber, awakening in the aftermath of the 4th War and the Jailer's defeat when the Dragon Isles were finally revealed to the world.
Extremely unique by the standards of other classes, Evoker is a hybrid Caster DPS (the first new one since the game released back in 2004) and Healer that focuses on wielding the power of the five Dragonflights in tandem, as well as using their natural biological advantages as dragons such as their wings and Breath Weapon. Evokers have two specializations: Devastation uses Red and Blue Flight powers to weave destruction with magical spells and potent breath attacks, while those who specialize in Preservation use Green and Bronze magic to close up wounds and manipulate time so those wounds never existed in the first place, and both specs use Black dragonflight powers as their baseline spells. Evoker are also notable for introducing a new gameplay mechanic in the form of "Empower" spells - certain otherwise instant-cast spells can instead be held to charge them multiple times to gain increasing levels of damage and additional effects.
Their physical attributes being worked into the class means that only Dracthyr can be Evokers, and in return, because all Dracthyr were Evokers before being sealed away and are re-awakening, Evoker is the race's only class choice as of 10.0.
- All Your Powers Combined: Evokers, unlike most Dragonkin, aren't limited to whatever Flight they reflect the colors of and can freely use magics from all five monochromatic dragonflights. While DPS and Healer puts heavier emphasis on some over others (Black/Red/Blue and Green/Bronze, respectively) there's no hard limit on what magics they can draw upon. Fittingly, many of their spells come out with a chromatic effect of all five colors at once before changing to one singular color as the effect nears completion.
- Breath Weapon: They're dragons so it's to be expected, they're able to shoot red fire out in a fanning wave, black fire in a massive strafing run, a beam of pure blue energy that focuses on a single enemy, green healing magic and bronze time magic, all done with deep exhales from their mouths.
- Draconic Humanoid: Their class fantasy is all about being one of these, complete with wings that allow for limited flight and a natural Breath Weapon. In fact Evoker is tied in so deeply to the identity of being a dragon the developers went on record just hours after the class' reveal that it's unlikely Evoker will ever be granted to another race, even if Dracthyr themselves eventually gain more class options.
- Glass Cannon: Evokers are about as fragile as Mages are, in spite of wearing mail armor they can't take too terribly much of a beating. This is traded off by being a burst-focused class that can do extremely large amounts of damage or massive bursts of party healing in a very short time frame, and with adequate usage of hover granting them move-while-casting and extra speed and using level 1 Empower spells which are instant, they can be shockingly mobile.
- Healing Shiv: Their Red dragonfire, especially their first filler spell Living Flame, can either damage enemies or heal allies, and certain Red-themed attacks will do both at the same time.
- Mechanically Unusual Class: In inclusion to being the most exclusive class - only available to a single race - Evokers have a unique "Empower" mechanic whereupon holding the key for longer continuously charges certain spells to strengthen them more at the cost of mobility as they charge. As an example, at level 1 their fire breath may only plume out a tiny, small damaging burst of flames but casts instantly, while at level 3 after several seconds of charging, that same spell may hit significantly harder, in a wider area and leave a burning damage-over-time effect on the enemy. Also, their AoE targeting reticules are completely unique to them, and look more like skillshot indicators from a MOBA like League of Legends or Smite than what most people would think of from an MMO.
- Mythology Gag: Their offensive fighting style calls to mind many of the dragon bosses over the game's history, from Onyxia's flying + deep breath combo to Malygos' focused beams of arcane energies, to their strafing run calling to mind Deathwing's strafing runs over continents in Cataclysm before 4.3.
- Super Prototype: The class' lore calls to mind Nefarian's ultimately futile attempt to create a Chromatic Dragonflight as personal supersoldiers for him and his father, as well as his experiments that led to the creation of the pitiable "Dragonmen". Deathwing's absolute hatred of anything non-dragon made him write the Evokers off as a lost cause and never share knowledge of their existence with his son, despite being exactly the kind of fighting force he would have loved to have had access to after openly turning heel, because the fact they weren't pureblooded dragons made them failures in his deranged mind.
- Time Master: Their affinity for bronze grants them some limited measure of control over time. In practice, this is represented by Preservation's bronze magic being heal-over-time spells "rewinding" injuries on themselves and party members so that they never happen in the first place.
- Video Game Flight: Out of combat, they have a useable version of Dragonflight's unique Dragon Riding mechanics that allows them to move around by soaring, diving and swooping. In combat they have a special "soar" ability that allows them to lift themselves off the ground for a limit time, allowing them to pelt the enemies safely from above.