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Characters / Warcraft: The Alliance

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A character subpage for the WarCraft universe, including World of Warcraft. For the main character page, see here.

"Proud and noble, courageous and wise, these races work together to preserve order in Azeroth. The Alliance is driven by honor and tradition. Its rulers are champions of justice, hope, knowledge, and faith. In a time when chaos and uncertainty reign, the Alliance remains steadfast in its determination to bring light to the darkest corners of the world"
Crest of the Alliance
Also known as the Alliance of Lordaeron or the Grand Alliance, the Alliance was a combined front against the invading orcish Horde, involving the peoples of the seven human kingdoms, the dwarves and gnomes of Khaz Modan, and the high elven kingdom of Quel'Thalas. The Alliance successfully drove the orcish Horde back through the Dark Portal in the Second War but split up by the time the Third War rolled around due to infighting and political turmoil among other larger problems, leaving several member factions broken or completely destroyed.

In World of Warcraft, the Alliance initially consists of Stormwind, Theramore, Ironforgenote , Gnomeregan and Darnassus, as well as the remnants of Stromgarde and Lordaeron and the exiled high elves of Quel'Thalas. It is later on in The Burning Crusade joined by the draenei of the Exodarnote  and in Cataclysm by the now worgen kingdom of Gilneas. Also during Cataclysm, a faction of the Dark Iron clan of dwarves returns to Ironforge. In Mists of Pandaria, the pandaren who follow the path of the Tushui join the Alliance, and during the course of the expansion Dalaran formally rejoins as well. In Battle for Azeroth, the Alliance seeks new allies in their war against the Horde, including the Lightforged Draenei of the Army of Light, the Void Elves, and the naval nation of Kul Tiras. Sometime around the end of the Fourth War, the Mechagnomes of Mechagon also join the Alliance. Other races sworn to the Alliance banner include the Frostborn dwarves of Northrend and the Pearlfin Jinyu of Pandaria. In Dragonflight, the dracthyr of the Obsidian Warders join the Alliance out of convenience to deal with the threat of Raszageth.

Due to length, this page has been split into the following subpages:

  • Human Kingdoms
  • Original Members
  • Later Members
    • The Exodar (Draenei) — Exiles who seek to end the darkness.
    • Worgen note 
    • Tushui (Pandaren) note  — Those who think before they act.
    • Obsidian Warders (Dracthyr) — Draconic humanoids seeking to forge their own path in Azeroth.
  • Allied Races
    • Quel'Thalas (High Elves and Void Elves) — The last of their kind that were denied their homeland. The Void Elves being Blood Elven exiles who dipped too far into forbidden magic and were forever stained by it.
    • The Vindicaar (Lightforged Draenei) — Holy crusaders fighting to uphold order in the universe.
    • Dark Iron Dwarves note 
    • Kul Tiran Humans note 
    • Mechagon (Mechagnomes) — Half gnome, half machine tinkers.

General Tropes

  • The Alliance: Initially formed by the seven human kingdoms to stand against the invading Horde, the Alliance of Lordaeron managed to push back the Horde and save themselves before they broke themselves apart. Unlike the Horde, the Alliance is exactly as it sounds like, various kingdoms and peoples who band together under one flag for mutual benefit. While the Warchief is the leader of the entire Horde, each faction leader of the Alliance are more or less equal in terms of governing their people.
    • By Mists of Pandaria, Varian Wrynn of Stormwind became the "High King of the Alliance" which Word of God states is the equivalent of Supreme Commander of the old Alliance. Despite the name, Varian does not have full control of the Alliance except in military matters, and even then the factions could leave the Alliance if they feel it is no longer in their benefit to stay.
    • The title of High King has become controversial among Alliance fans. While it is obstinately a military rank, it appears Anduin has inherited the title from his father, as though it were a real kingship. This, along with other racial leaders (notably Genn Greymane) referring to him as "my King", has made players begin to wonder if the Alliance truly is an alliance anymore or, if like the Horde, all members are expected to bow to the will of one individual. The Battle of Azeroth novellas reaffirmed that his position of leadership is a courtesy given to him and the other Alliance members are free to leave the faction if they no longer feel it's beneficial to them.
  • Badass Army:
  • Badass Creed: A number of organisations within the Alliance has some rather badass words associated with them.
    • The Knights of the Silver Hand, the Paladins of the Alliance, have one, spoken in the humans' ancient language:
      "Esarus thar no'Darador — By Blood and Honor We Serve."
    • The aforementioned 7th Legion has a really cool one.
      Halford Wyrmbane: Through the valleys and peaks of Mount Hyjal, across the shifting sands of Silithus, against the Legion's dread armies — we have fought. We are the nameless, faceless, sons and daughters of the Alliance. By the Light and by the might of the Alliance, the first strike belongs to us and the last strike is all that our enemies see. We are 7th Legion.
  • Blue Is Heroic: The primary color used by the Alliance is blue, contrasting with the initially villainous Horde, which used red as their primary color.
  • Color-Coded Armies: Though mainly using blue as a whole, the various nations of the Alliance tend to dabble in other colors for their armies:
    • Stormwind, being the first human kingdom introduced in the franchise, is blue.
    • Lordaeron, during Warcraft II, would also use blue, but also dabble in white, usually when there were multiple human armies or in the presence of Night Elves in Warcraft III. The Silver Hand under Uther's leadership use white.
    • Stromgarde uses red. They would fight orcish armies that used black to avoid interface confusion.
    • Kul Tiras uses dark green. This can be seen in abundance during the Orc campaign in The Frozen Throne.
    • Gilneas uses black. One of their divisions in the Alliance expedition to Kalimdor use black.
    • The Night Elves consistently use blue. Whenever the human expedition appeared during their campaigns the humans would use white.
  • Cool Airship: By Wrath of the Lich King, gnomish engineers developed large airships that were used over Icecrown before getting enough to to use in just about every major campaign in Cataclysm, with the Skyfire being the ship famous for taking down Deathwing. It would later lead the Alliance's initial forces into Pandaria.
  • Cool Boat: Up until Cataclysm, the Alliance's primary mode of transportation was by boat.
  • Create Your Own Villain: See Didn't Think This Through and Fantastic Racism for the numerous moments when the Alliance caused more and more kingdoms and factions to turn to the Horde.
    Lor'themar: When will they see that the Horde exists BECAUSE of the Alliance? Because of their prejudice and their bigotry!? They force us ever closer to Hellscream’s Horde!
  • Didn't Think This Through: Quite a few times, their leaders' mismanagements has caused the Alliance a great deal of problems down the road
    • Alliance vessels firing on a, at the time, neutral ship full of goblin refugees drives the Bilgewater Cartel to join the Horde; giving the Horde a much needed technological boost.
    • Jaina's knee-jerk reaction in causing the "Purge of Dalaran" caused the Blood Elves, who were in secret negotiations to rejoin the Alliance, to commit themselves 100% to the Horde for good.
    • Tyrande's disdain towards the Nightborne during the re-taking of Suramar drives them to join the Horde, when originally they were considering joining the Alliance.
    • During the Blood War, The Alliance may be winning the war as a whole, but their decisions causes quite a few kingdoms and factions to join forces with the Horde anyway. Saurfang would go on to ask Jaina & Shaw just how doing all this wasn't going to push these factions into the Horde's arms.
      • The Alliance randomly captures and imprisons Princess Talanji of Zandalar (which was at the time a hostile but still neutral nation), allowing the Horde to free her and giving them an opportunity to bring the Zandalari and their powerful fleet into their ranks at a time when the two factions are preparing for open war. The Alliance then would go on to attack the Zandalari in hopes of dissuading them from joining the Horde; however, the attack and Rastakhan's death caused the Zandalari to swear revenge and formally join the Horde.
      • In Voldun, the Alliance burned the Voldunai caravans that were carrying Horde supplies in hopes of dissuading the Vulpera from working with the Horde again; the problem was the Vulpera are an extremely poor people so the Alliance destroying their potential to make much needed funds as well as their way of life, infuriated the Vulpera, causing them to immediately join the Horde for protection.
  • Divided We Fall: Basically the reason why the Third War ended so terribly for the Alliance as a whole. Once the threat of the Horde was taken care of, most of the members didn't really see a point to remain an Alliance.
    • Lordaeron was left alone for the most part, and couldn't handle the plague of undeath that would become the Scourge. It being the strongest Alliance kingdom at the time meant the others would quickly fall behind it.
    • Gilneas left and isolated themselves behind their wall because their king didn't want to be involved in other people's problems. This protected them from the Scourge, but left them vulnerable the the Worgen curse years later until they had to rejoin the Alliance during the Horde-Alliance War in Cataclysm.
    • Stromgarde left after the Second War, fell on hilariously bad times, and was destroyed by during Third War. As of the WoW, the survivors have rejoined the Alliance, but all they held on to was a giant hole in the middle of the Arathi Highlands until Battle for Azeroth and the Fourth War ended with the castle of Stromgarde restored.
    • Quel'Thalas primarily kept to themselves behind their own walls during the Third War until Arthas ran the Scourge through it. And when they tried to join the war effort in Lordearon after that, the human lord in charge of them was a smug racist and bullied them into leaving the Alliance. Years later, only a few scant fragments of high elves remain in the Alliance, while the blood elves of Quel'Thalas joined the Horde.
    • While Gnomeregan technically didn't leave the Alliance immediately after the second war, their city was invaded by the Troggs during the Third War, and the gnomes chose to focus on defending it over sending reinforcements to their allies. This in turn caused the other Alliance members to believe they had left, and as such no help could be provided to save Gnomeregan until it was too late.
    • Kul Tiras remained in the Alliance until Jaina, daughter of the Kul Tiras Admiral Daelin Proudmoore, helped the Horde kill said admiral. They looked to the crippled Alliance Leadership, demanding justice, but were denied. In turn they left the Alliance and didn't look back until Battle for Azeroth, but this is only after another world war with the Horde broke out.
    • Dalaran fell victim to this in the Third War mostly due to the other surrounding nations already being destroyed by the Scourge. As a result, Arthas crushed their defenses and the city was subsequently annihilated by Archimonde. Once the city is rebuilt, however, they begin to subvert the trope by becoming a neutral party in world affairs, and end up being largely successful on their own before they rejoin the Alliance in Mists of Pandaria. The city functioning as a neutral hub for the Alliance, Horde and class orders to operate out of plays a large role in thwarting both the Lich King and the Burning Legion during their respective attempts to conquer the world.
    • The dwarves largely subvert this in regards to the rest of the Alliance, but historically struggle with this trope within their own clans, specifically between the Dark Irons and everyone else. Whereas the Ironforge and Wildhammer clans put aside their differences and prospered, the Dark Irons earned themselves the enmity of both, summoned Ragnaros to defend themselves, and thus ended up enslaved by the Firelord for years until the players defeated Ragnaros and freed them. Once a faction of them under Moira join the Alliance and start trying to co-exist with the other clans, they start to prosper and finally begin to subvert the trope as a whole.
    • The Kingdom of Alterac betrayed the Alliance, joined the Horde, and got destroyed for their trouble. The remnants never rejoined the Alliance and instead created the Syndicate.
    • Stormwind tried to subvert this during the First War by calling on the other human nations for aid, but unfortunately nobody believed them and thus they fell victim to this trope and were sacked. However, as a result of this, the other human nations were convinced to form the Alliance and thus prevent this fate from befalling all the other nations.
    • Even the Alliance's non-playable races aren't immune to this: the Jinyu, in ancient times, tried to stand against the encroaching Mogu Empire, and called upon the Hozen to aid them. Unbeknownst to them, the Hozen sold them out to the Mogu in exchange for preferential treatment, leading to the Mogu enslaving both races and igniting a bitter racial enmity that persists to this day.
  • Fantastic Racism: Humans, Dwarves, High Elves and Gnomes (As well as Worgen, who used to be Human) have fought multiple wars against the Orcs and Trolls, leading to deep-seated hatreds, which are understandable to a degree. The Draenei have suffered even more at Orc hands, and had the Blood elves kidnap and leech the power of one of the beings they worship, and Orcs killed one of the Night Elven demigods. A lot of the Alliance reason for confrontational acts against the Horde lie in either racism or the Horde provoking them. This has created a number of problems for the Alliance and its member races over the years, and it can be argued that its the faction's Fatal Flaw.
    • The 3 Dwarven clans have always had long-standing feuds with each other, leading to in-fighting when Moira returned with the Dark Irons to claim her right to the throne upon Magni's crystallization. Though the Council of Three Hammers' formation soothed most major complaints, tensions and distrust would still run high between the different clans for years after.
      • When Varian called upon the Dwarven clans to defend Ironforge against the Ice Trolls, who were spurred by the Zandalari into attacking, both the Wildhammer and Bronzebeard clans believed the Dark Irons would defeat the other clan and take over Ironforge, and thus refused to help. When Moira subverts the trope and helps Varian in defeating the trolls, the other clans are justly ashamed and begin working more cooperatively with the Dark Irons.
      • Tensions would briefly flare again years later shortly before the Third Invasion of the Burning Legion, when Magni re-awoke and threw the leadership into question, with both the Dark Irons and Wildhammers refusing to bow to Magni should he decide to retake the throne. Fortunately, the problem solves itself when Magni declines to retake the throne, allowing the Council to remain in control.
    • Daelin Proudmoore's refusal to let go of his hatred for the Horde ends up getting him killed when Jaina allows the Horde to storm Theramore in order to defeat him. As a result, Kul Tiras demands retribution from the Alliance, and when they are denied they promptly leave the faction in outrage. This ends up biting them in the ass, as we learn in Battle for Azeroth that Kul Tiras has fallen prey to a number of internal issues without the Alliance present to help them.
    • The Forsaken initially sent emissaries to the Alliance, believing that they, as the former citizens of Lordaeron, would be accepted by their living brethren. The emissaries never returned, and the Forsaken have generally been viewed with contempt by their living brethren, driving them to join the Horde and creating an enemy situated directly next door to the Alliance.
    • Grand Marshal Garithos sent the Blood Elves on obvious suicide missions which drove them to join Illidan, as well as the remaining Blood Elves to spurn the Alliance and join the Horde even when the group under Illidan went rogue.
    • Infighting between the Alliance and Horde during the war against the Lich King, especially on the part of Garrosh and Varian, binds them to inaction when Yogg-Saron nearly escapes, forcing Brann Bronzebeard to seek the aid of the more faction-blind player characters to stop him.
    • Though he eventually got over it, Varian's undisguised hatred for Gilneas and its leader was initially a massive obstacle to the Worgen joining the Alliance.
    • Though initially one of the most stalwart proponents for peace between the two factions, the Bombing of Theramore sends Jaina Proudmoore headlong into this. Kalecgos and Thrall barely manage to convince her from using enslaved water elementals to flood Orgrimmar, which she realizes in hindsight would also have sunk the nearby Alliance fleet. Despite this, Jaina's new-found distrust for the Horde would continue to come up.
      • During Mists of Pandaria, Jaina discovers that Garrosh has used the neutral city of Dalaran to steal a powerful magical artifact, the Divine Bell, with the help of the local Horde faction, the Blood Elf Sunreavers. Jaina promptly forcibly ousts the Horde from Dalaran in a rage and slaughters many of the civilians, unwittingly ruining Varian's attempts to bring the Blood Elves, who were unhappy with Garrosh's leadership, back into the Alliance.
      • Jaina outright encourages Varian to murder the gathered Horde leadership following Garrosh's defeat at the Siege of Orgrimmar. Fortunately, Varian has undergone Character Development by this point and instead pledges to an uneasy peace between the factions.
      • During Legion, Jaina's refusal to work with the Horde leads her to abandon Dalaran and remain absent for the entire rest of the invasion, leaving Khadgar to take over.
    • The Alliance's continued fighting with the Horde causes havoc on Pandaria, the negative emotions between the two allowing the Sha to escape and terrorize the continent. Their allies on the continent, the Jinyu, also have this in regards to the Hozen.
    • Greymane also has no shortage of hatred for the Horde, particularly Sylvanas and the Forsaken, who are responsible for the death of his son and the loss of his kingdom. In Legion, he spends most of his time interfering in their schemes instead of the Legion's.
    • Tyrande also has a rather open disdain for the Horde, but it's never displayed to the degree of Greymane, Jaina or Varian. That is until Sylvanas burns down Teldrassil. Tyrande and the rest of the night elves begin demanding vengeance, to the point where they would rather go on their own with only adventurers for aid to retake Darkshore when the rest of the Alliance forces are focused on the fight elsewhere, largely in Zandalar and Kul Tiras.
    • Much of the faction conflict in Legion is fueled by the belief that the Horde abandoned the Alliance at the Battle for the Broken Shore, when in reality the Horde was forced to leave or be overwhelmed. As a result, a number of the Alliance leaders, including Jaina and Greymane, blame the Horde for Varian's death.
  • Genocide Dilemma: After the Alliance of Lordaeron defeated the Orcish Horde and destroyed the Dark Portal in the Second War, they were split on what to do with the stranded orcs they had captured. Genn Greymane and Thoras Trollbane wanted all the orcs executed en masses while Terenas and Antonidas believed that the orcs can be cured of their lust for conquest. Eventually, they settled with the solution of internment camps. But the high maintenance cost proved too much for kingdoms of Gilneas and Stormgrade, who left the Alliance shortly after.
  • Holier Than Thou: One of the more common Alliance character flaws as a whole. Their faction is united in great part by a common ideal of virtues and heroism, opposition to everything demon-related and originally a front against the then evil Horde. Even though the Horde has turned a new leaf since then and no longer is the Demons' personal army, the Alliance races still tend to feel like they are the good guys and have a higher moral ground than them, when really the conflict has now become more of a Gray-and-Grey Morality. When certain factions or leaders take this too far, this leads to a lot of the examples listed above under Fantastic Racism.
  • Not-So-Omniscient Council of Bickering: The Alliance following the Second War was plagued with internal intrigue and bickering, much of which led to its initial downfall.
    • Subverted with the current Alliance, before the events of Battle For Azeroth. In the novella A Good War, Sylvanas believed that she could use this to cause Alliance's second downfall by capturing Teldrassil, thinking that Greymane would be enraged if the Alliance tried to retake Darnassus before Gilneas, which would cause infighting among the Alliance's leadership. In another novella Elegy, when Anduin realizes this, Genn assures him that he would not abandon the Alliance over something so petty, especially after how much the kaldorei and the Alliance have helped his people.
    • After the end of the Fourth War, tensions start rising among the Alliance ranks between the people supporting the new armistice with the Horde, and those who are against it. The night elves especially don't take kindly to making peace with the Horde, after they helped Sylvanas with the Burning of Teldrassil.
  • Restrained Revenge: A stable of the Alliance is that their acts of revenge for acts committed against them by the Horde tend to be light compared to what they were victims of:
    • The Horde is a Giant Space Flea from Nowhere, razes the Kingdom of Stormwind, Arathi, greatly endangers Lordaeron and Quel'Thalas? The Orcs are put in camps while Dalaran mages study them and why they carry the demonic taint with them, with the eventual goal of one day integrating them into the Alliance. note 
    • The Horde restarts war by invading Ashenvale, Gilneas, massacring Night Elves and nuking Theramore (amongst others)? The Alliance helps the Horde get rid of its corrupt Warchief and make the Horde leaders swear that they will uphold honor from now on.
    • The Horde invades the Night Elves again, this time committing what is explicitly called a genocide? The Alliance helps the Horde remove its corrupt Warchief again.
  • The Order: Several orders have formed either from or within the Alliance, chiefest of all the Order of the Silver Hand, to which the human and dwarven paladins of the Alliance belong.
  • Saintly Church:
    • The Church of the Holy Light, which most of the human kingdoms and the dwarves of Khaz Modan belong to. It does have its number of corrupt members and offshoots, but remains for the most part a Saintly Church.
    • The Priesthood of Elune is also renowned for its fairness.
  • Standard Fantasy Races: The original Alliance of Lordaeron included Humans, Dwarves, Gnomes and High Elves uniting against the Orcish Horde. The current incarnation of the Alliance kept Humans, Dwarves and Gnomes; High Elves were replaced by their more nature-loving cousins, the Night Elves (and later the Void Elves). Additionally, they were joined by the less standard, demonic-looking but noble Draenei, Dark Is Not Evil werewolf-like Worgen, the panda-like Pandaren, and the draconic Dracthyr.
  • True Companions: While the Alliance was originally formed just to fight a common enemy, with its members still mainly focusing on their own individual interests, this has changed over time. The Alliance as it's today is now bound together not only by a deep commitment to uphold their common ideals, but also a sense of brotherhood which has developed through years of fighting together. This change became especially more prominent in the Alliance's storyline in Mists of Pandaria and later in Legion with Varian Wrynn, sacrificing his own life, to allow the remaining Alliance forces to retreat from the Broken Shore.
    • Seemingly subverted and than played straight in the Battle for Azeroth Collector's Edition novellas. In A Good War, Sylvanas assuming the Alliance to still be the same Not-So-Omniscient Council of Bickering at it's core, leads the Horde to capture Teldrassil, believing that if the Horde took control of the World Tree, the Alliance's leadership (Greymane in particular) would be divided in where they should focus their forces. This would put it's member races interests in direct conflict with one another, driving a wedge between them which would eventually break the Alliance apart. However, the other novella Elegy shows that even if Sylvanas had conquered the World Tree instead of burning it her plan would have failed regardless, since Genn was not only deeply grateful towards the night elves for helping his people and more than willing to repay the favor, but he had also developed a Undying Loyalty towards the Alliance as a whole. This is shown clearly in his speech to Anduin.
      Genn Greymane: Well, you are a fool. A fool to think for a moment that I would withdraw my support because you are helping the kaldorei. Do I want my kingdom back? My people to return to their homes? Of course I do! Do I want it badly enough to allow innocent night elves to suffer, when they so generously have helped the Gilneans these last few years? When they mitigated the worgen curse, so we could hang on to ourselves and not get lost in madness? When they fed us, sheltered us, and offered us their home when we had nothing? No. I would never betray that kindness by turning my back on them now. Sylvanas doesn’t understand that about the living. And she certainly doesn’t understand the Alliance. She is in for a rude awakening, and you can mark my words.
    • Ultimately subverted in the novel Shadows Rising. To illustrate the Night Elves have retreated to Nordrassil and for the most part have gone completely radio silent on everyone else, Genn's single minded focus on Sylvanas to the point of advocating for an invasion on Zandalar due to intelligence suggested her followers were on the continent had Anduin charge Turalyon with the hunt, and then Anduin, Turalyon, and Alleria descending into a do whatever we must mindset on said hunt is causing friction with Jaina, who has seen the end result of this with Arthas.