To counter the threat of the Burning Legion's Third Invasion, representatives from all classes and races of Azeroth banded with their peers to form the Class Orders. While most of these representatives were neutral from a Alliance vs. Horde perspective, many also were high ranking members of both factions, leaving their differences aside to face the Legion as a single force while tensions kept rising between the Alliance and the Horde. Each Order also possesses an exclusive Order Hall, and the Adventurer eventually rises to claim the title of leader of their respective Order, being able to upgrade their Order Hall and recruit new troops to be sent in missions all around Azeroth and specially the Broken Isles. Once the Adventurer becomes leader of their Order and commands its efforts on the Broken Shore, they are summoned back to their Order Hall in order to acquire their unique Class Mount.
By Legion's patch 7.2, the Orders joined forces at the Broken Shore to fight the Legion at their focal invasion point. This unified, multi-class force became known as the Legionfall Army.
Knights of the Ebon Blade
A renegade faction of death knights who broke away from the Scourge. Originally created by the Lich King to destroy the Scarlet Crusade, they were eventually betrayed by him when he sent them on a suicide mission against the Argent Dawn with the intent to lure Tyrion Fordring out of hiding. Upon discovering this, they turned against their former master, and their leader Darion Mograine helped Tyrion against the Lich King, forcing him to retreat. The Knights of the Ebon Blade then sworn vengeance on the Scourge, and formed an uneasy partnership with the Argent Crusade, as well as the Alliance and the Horde, to take Arthas down. They serve as the reason death knights become playable in Wrath of the Lich King.
- Anti-Hero: They're all this to varying degrees, some going as far as Token Evil Teammate.
- Arch-Enemy: The Scourge.
- Ascended Extra: Downplayed with the lich, Amal'thazad. Originally the Archeus frost trainer, he is part of the Death Knight legion questline and even becomes a champion for the Class Hall.
- The Atoner: They fight the Lich King to make up for what they have done, but are not above morally dubious tactics in doing so. Although some of them are simply on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
- Badass Creed: "We do what the living cannot."
- Black Knight: All of them are knights dressed in black, ominous armors, with large swords and who used to work for a force of evil.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Played with; they are technically a faction of undead black knights working on the side of good and fighting the very Scourge that created them, but how actually heroic they are is variable depending on the member.
- Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: The main reason most of them join the Alliance or the Horde following the Lich King's demise; since they no longer have a master to serve nor a revenge to satisfy, and are now too monstrous to genuinely reintegrate normal society, they chose to continue what they do best (fighting) by serving the two factions.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Well, former evil, but nevertheless they retain their deep echoing voices, and the tone almost always sounds bitter or cynical regardless of their races if you click them, especially if you did it repeatedly.
- Horsemen of the Apocalypse: They assemble their own group of them in Legion. The Horsemen consist of General Nazgrim, Thoras Trollbane, High Inquisitor Whitemane, and Darion Mograine (after the Knights failed to retrieve Tirion Fordring's corpse.)
- Magic Knight: As death knights all of them use their dark magic together with their melee fighting skills.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Their relationship with the Argent Crusade, since they don't think their Paladin allies' tactics are practical. Unlike the Alliance and the Horde, though, they can work together against the Lich King.
- In Legion, with the Lich King himself.
- Token Heroic Orc: While the death knights themselves can be this, the Ebon Blade has Amal'thazad, the only friendly lich in game. He even becomes a class order hero in Legion.
- The Undead: They were all raised from the dead to become one of the Scourge's death knights.
Highlord Darion Mograine
Leader of the Knights of the Ebon Blade. Highlord Darion is the son of Alexandros Mograine, who was murdered by his other son and resurrected by the Scourge as the leader of all death knights. He led an assault on Naxxramas with the intent of freeing his father's soul, but succeeded only by sacrificing his own in turn and taking Alexandros' place. During the battle at Light's Hope Chapel, however, Tirion Fordring was able to free him (and the rest of the Ebon Blade) from the Lich King's control, using the Ashbringer. In Northrend, the two of them led the charge into Icecrown, eventually laying siege to the seat of the Lich King himself.
- Anime Hair: His hair defied gravity back when he was alive during the Ashbringer comic. Just look at him.
- Anti-Hero: After his inevitable HeelFace Turn near the end of death knight starting quest chain, he becomes a Type IV, being fairly ruthless in his quest against the Lich King and his followers, in contrast to Tirion and his paladins.
- The Atoner: Dedicates both himself and his order to making up for their crimes under the Scourge by joining the fight against the Lich King.
- Badass Normal: Before his Heroic Sacrifice, unlike his father.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Formerly, like most death knights.
- Cain and Abel: In the Ashbringer comic, his brother Renault went crazy with guilt over the murder of their father. When an oblivious Darion showed up after years of estrangement to ask for help with the whole "Dad's a Death Knight" thing, Renault started kicking him to death while he was too shocked to even try to defend himself.
- Cool Helmet: Wears one all the time. He also gets a new one in Icecrown Citadel.
- Death by Childbirth: His mother died when giving birth to him.
- Didn't Think This Through: The Ebon Blade needs a leader for their own Four Horseman. Darion's candidate? Tirion Fordring, his body entombed at Light's Hope Chapel. There's just one problem with this idea he should have thought of. Just as the Knights of the Ebon Blade have broken through the paladins and are about to raise Tirion the Light forces them back. The very same light that rendered even the Lich King himself almost completely powerless in its wake at the Battle of Light's Hope Chapel back in Wrath of the Lich King. Liadrin calls him out on how stupid an idea it was to try it to begin with.
- To be fair to Darion, it wasn't his idea. It came from the new Lich King himself, and Darion was exactly as horrified by the idea as could be expected, considering Tirion was both one of Azeroth's greatest heroes and a close friend. Still, one must wonder why he was even reluctantly willing to try, considering he was at the Battle of Light's Hope Chapel and the Scourge's hold on the Plaguelands had only lessened since then. What did he think was going to happen?
- Dual Wielding: He wields a pair of runeblades after throwing the Ashbringer to Tirion.
- Equivalent Exchange: "My soul for yours. I love you, Dad."
- Everyone Has Standards: He's genuinely disgusted at the proposal to raise Tirion as a death knight, but reluctantly goes along with the idea.
- Fallen Hero: When serving the Lich King; he used to be a member of the Argent Dawn.
- Heroic Sacrifice: He did not really die because of it, but instead becomes Kel'thuzad's mindless minion afterwards.
- Happened again at the conclusion of the Legion Death Knight storyline, where he holds open a death gate so the Deathlord and the first three of the new Horsemen can escape holy wrath at Light's Hope Chapel. Like his first one, this didn't quite take, as his body is recovered and he is raised as the commander of the new Four Horsemen.
- In the Hood: As the Ebon Watcher.
- It's Personal: On Orbaz Bloodbane, we don't know exactly what other than him leaving in Light's Hope chapel. His subordinates were surprised that Darion personally showed up and take part during the assassination scheme to ensure he hit the dust.
- Love Redeems: His (first) Heroic Sacrifice.
- Necessarily Evil: Darion believes the Death Knights to be this for the good of Azeroth. When a paladin calls him a monster, his reply to her is very solemn.Darion: Without monsters, there can be no heroes.
- The Power of Love: Tirion had advised Darion that only an act of love would free his father from the corrupted Ashbringer. Darion's act of love (His Heroic Sacrifice) was powerful enough to not only save his father's soul but also destroy the entire Scourge army assaulting Light's Hope Chapel.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: "You betrayed me. You betrayed us all, monster. Taste the might of Mograine!" Not that he got far; it didn't even last long enough to be a Curb-Stomp Battle. After the battle, he leads the Knights of the Ebon Blade towards revenge against the Lich King.
- Trauma Conga Line: In the comic. See Cain and Abel above, among other things.
- Time to Step Up, Commander: In Legion he gives up the leadership of the order to the Player Character and by proxy, to the Lich King to an exent once he/she get the Artifact Weapon. If the Artifact are the Blades of the Fallen Prince, he outright says that he's "through with having magical weapons dictate my fate".
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Goes from a heroic aspiring paladin to a death knight Anti-Hero.
The death knight representative for the Horde.
- An Axe to Grind: Preferred to wield a two-handed axe when he was under the Lich King's control.
- Anti-Magic: Creates an Anti-Magic Zone for the player death knight during his rescue.
- Bash Brothers: With Thassarian.
- BFS: His favored weapon after being freed from the Lich King's control is a huge greatsword.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Formerly, like most death knights. To be done again at Sylvanas' hands, though nothing has been seen of it yet.
- Casting a Shadow: Uses the Unholy tree's Anti-Magic abilities, and sends players into the Realm of Shadow to deal with the shades haunting him.
- Distressed Dude: In the Death Knight starting area, there is a quest to rescue him from the Scarlet Crusade stronghold. And again, when Sylvanas has him kidnapped at Andorhal, to be brainwashed in the depths of the Undercity.
- Friendly Enemy: With Thassarian once they join their respective factions. Deconstructed during the battle of Andorhal, as while they both try to avoid direct confrontation as much as possible, the warmongers under their respective orders eventually force them to fight, and Koltira's effort only end up nearly causing the Forsaken to lose. This in turn causes Sylvanas to have him taken to Undercity to be conditioned into forgetting his friendship with Thassarian.
- Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: In order where almost everyone wears a face-covering helmet, he and Thassarian are among the few members to go around with bared face.
- "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: He tried this on Thassarian after the latter became a Death Knight. It didn't work; Thassarian killed him and Koltira himself was raised as a Death Knight. Their friendship proved stronger than undeath, however.
The death knight representative for the Alliance.
- An Ice Person: Considered the archetypal Frost death knight — Frost's Dual Wielding specialization is even named after him. Exemplified if summoned to defend Hyjal, as he exclusively uses Frost-based magics to fight.
- Bash Brothers: With Koltira.
- Big Brother Instinct: Very protective of his little sister.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Formerly, like most death knights.
- Dual Wielding: Favors a sword in each hand after he breaks away from the Scourge.
- Friendly Enemy: With Koltira after they joined their respective factions.
- Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: Like Koltira.
- Morality Pet: His sister.
- Noble Demon: While under the Lich King's control, having had a good sense camaradiere unlike any other death knight. He even sends the player to rescue Koltira when he's captured by the Scarlet Crusade, at considerable risk to his own reputation (as Death Knights are not supposed to show compassion).
- Self-Made Orphan: Tragic example, to prove his loyalty, Kel'Thuzad made him kill his own mother.
Archbishop Alonsus Faol
Head of the Church of the Holy Light prior to Benedictus and co-founder of the Order of the Silver Hand. Having recognised how unsuitable priests were for warfare after the destruction of Stormwind, he founded the Order of the Silver Hand with his apprentice Uther, whom he anointed as the first paladin. He died sometime between the Second and Third Wars, the cause unknown. His grave can be found at Faol's Rest, outside of the Scarlet Monastery.
He is revealed in Legion to have been raised as an undead by the Scourge during the Third War, but managed to break free of their control. He has remained hidden since then, but reemerges to form a united front of priests of all faiths against the Burning Legion.
- Big Good: Of the Priest Class Order storyline in Legion.
- Came Back Wrong: It's revealed that he was revived by the Scourge at some point but was able free himself. He's spent his time afterwards "fighting in a secret war."
- Cool Old Guy: Commands a great deal of respect in his old age.
- Good Shepherd: He's a kind-hearted priest who is devoted to helping people, which has made him a very beloved figure.
- High Priest: The head of the Church in the first few games, succeeded by Archbishop Benedictus.
- Light 'em Up: As the head of the Church, he's a very adept Light-user.
- Retcon: Lore initially had him tied to the Clerics of Northshire, having personally witnessed how unsuitable they were for battle. Current lore has him as a native of Lordaeron, who never went to Stormwind during the First War and whose only ties to Northshire is through being head of the Church.
- So Proud of You: Towards Turalyon in Before the Storm.
- Staff of Authority: Mentioned to carry a ceremonial staff to signify his authority as Archbishop.
- Yin-Yang Bomb: Utilizes both Light and Shadow together as a Discipline priest in Legion.
Edwin VanCleef's orphaned daughter. Watching her father die at the hands of adventurers, she fled the Deadmines, eventually stumbling into the Saldean home. With seemingly no recollection of who she was, she was adopted by the Saldeans, who named her Hope. In truth, she knew well who she was and since the years since her father's death has been working towards avenging him.
- Action Girl: While, by her own admission, not as good a fighter as her father, she's still a quite capable fighter.
- Alliterative Name: Vanessa VanCleef
- Avenging the Villain: Her goal is to avenge her father's death at the hands of the adventurers sent by Gryan Stoutmantle.
- Better to Die than Be Killed: Refuses to be slain at the hands of the player characters and thus sets off the last set of explosives on the ship.
- Defeat Equals Friendship: In Legion, after being defeated by the Rogue PC, Vanessa is forced into serving them by the rest of The Uncrowned, thus becoming a companion character.
- Combat Pragmatist: Knows she's not the fighter her father was and compensates by using poisons or explosives to rig battles in her favor.
- Dual Wielding: Wields two huge flaming daggers.
- Faking the Dead: She shows up alive in the Rogue order campaign in Legion, explaining away her apparent death as the aftereffects of the mind-altering poison she used in her fight allowing her to cut and run when things looked grim.
- Master Poisoner: She's extremely adept at brewing poisons, especially venom that affect the minds of her enemies.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: In Heroic Deadmines, she takes her father's role as the final boss of the dungeon.
- Your Mind Makes It Real: Her venom is capable of affecting the minds of her enemies to such a degree that the visions they see might end up killing them.
The Earthen Ring
The Earthen Ring is an organization dedicated to preserving the harmony between the elements on Azeroth and Outland. They are made up of shamans from both the Alliance and the Horde. In Cataclysm they had a major role in working to repair the destruction Deathwing's return has wrought upon Azeroth and preventing further disasters from happening, but their numbers were devastated. They laid low during Mists of Pandaria and Warlords of Draenor, but in Legion they are back, with shaman players taking a leadership role in the organization, rallying the elements to battle the Burning Legion.
- Arch-Enemy: Twilight's Hammer.
- Balance of Power: Ideally the Earthen Ring would like to preserve the balance between the four elements, which are represented by the elemental lords Ragnaros (Fire), Therazane (Earth), Neptulon (Water), and Al'Akir (Wind). They will often take sides with one to pacify the other. For example, during the Midsummer Fire Festival, they side with Ragnaros against Ahune the Frost Lord, in order to prevent an elemental war, and in Cataclysm they work mainly for Therazane and Neptulon to stop the Twilight's Hammer and the naga in Deepholm and Vashj'ir respectively.
- A Day in the Limelight: They have been around since the beginning of World of Warcraft, but they were the focus of multiple quest arcs in the Cataclysm expansion.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: In the final run to safety in the Hour Of Twilight dungeon, four of the earthen ring shaman you've quested with and known are unceremoniously killed off by being strangled by a tentacle (at one point it was possible to save them, but a subsequent patch made the tentacles that kill them untargetable).
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: When the player tells Therazane they're working with the Earthen Ring, an organization of shamans dedicated to maintaining the balance of power between the elements, and are therefore very knowledgeable about the elemental lords, she says she's never heard of them. They are more accommodating in Legion but still need a little convincing before joining the fight against the Burning Legion.
- Equal-Opportunity Evil: Inverted. Shamans of all races are welcome to join the Earthen Ring. They are also more than willing to work with members of the Horde or the Alliance to protect Azeroth and Outland.
- Elemental Powers: Being made up of shamans, this is a given.
- Gondor Calls for Aid: The shaman class campaign in Legion has them arranging alliances with the forces of the four elemental planes to help battle the Burning Legion.
- Out of Focus: They don't appear at all in Mists of Pandaria and Warlords of Draenor. They'll get more screen time as part of the shaman class hall in Legion.
- Shadow Archetype: Twilight's Hammer to the Earthen Ring. Similar methods (use of the elements and study of the Old Gods), vastly different goals: Twilight's Hammer wants to use the elements to spread chaos, and they study the Old Gods to pave the way for their return, while the Earthen Ring wants to preserve the balance between the elements, and they study the Old Gods in order to find ways to keep them from coming back.
- Summon Magic: They often summon elemental spirits to help them in combat or perform cleansing rituals.
Leader of the Earthen Ring prior to Tides of War.
- A Day in the Limelight: He barely appears in World of Warcraft and is a minor character in Tides of War, but he gets a lot of page time in the manga Shaman.
- Elemental Powers: Though one of the plot points of Shaman is the fear that the Earthen Ring is losing its connection to the elements, Muln is still quite powerful. At the end of the story he proves that the Earthen Ring's method of requesting aid from elementals rather than forcing them into submission is still the right way of doing things.
- A Load of Bull: He's a tauren.
- Passing the Torch: To Thrall in Tides of War.
The Council of the Black Harvest
First mentioned in a lore book in 5.0, The Council of the Black Harvest is an six person group of Warlock power-seekers formed after Deathwing's defeat, who have each been touched in different ways by dark magic, not just the fel normal warlocks are used to using. The council travels in groups of two seeking out the power of what they believe to be the most superior; Human Leader Kanrethad Ebonlocke and Undead Jubeka Shadowbreaker are the Demonologists, seeking perfection in demonic control and new and powerful minions to bind. Blood Elven Shinfel and the Gnome Zelfrax are the Affliction warlocks, who are hunting down the remnants of the twilight's hammer and learn their powerful, insanity inducing corruption. And Worgen Zinnen and Orc Ritssyn are the Destruction warlocks, searching for ways to obtain the power of Deathwing and Ragnaros respectively.
Kanrethad and Jubeka both play a major role in the warlock class quest introduced in 5.2, involving their journeys through Outland to perfect their demonology and culminating in Kanrethad's corruption induced insanity when he successfully becomes a full blooded demon.
- And I Must Scream: At the end of "Pursuing the Black Harvest" Kanrethad Ebonlocke has "Eternal Banishment" cast on him by Jubeka Shadowbreaker.
- Brought Down to Badass: In patch 7.2 Kanrethad Ebonlock has the fel energy that made him into a demon siphoned off, is returned to a normal-by-warlock-standards human, and rejoins the council. He was the former leader of the council, but considering it was the player who helped bring him back, he doesn't challenge them for the position.
- Dark Is Not Evil: This is normally a tricky issue with warlocks, given their role in the lore and the fact they consort with demons. In this case the Council worked on and spread their knowledge for the benefit of all warlocks and took precautions to make sure that they themselves didn't become a threat to Azeroth in the course of poking at Things Man Was Not Meant to Know.
- Divided We Fall: Part of the council's pact is if one member returns without their partner, or doesn't return at all, they'll be hunted down, killed, and have their soul banished. As Kanrethad put it, "We succeed together or die alone."
- Putting the Band Back Together: In Legion, the Council of the Black Harvest is nearly destroyed by a botched summoning and it's up to the player to find the missing members and reform the council. The player takes (the previously banished) Kanrethad's place, and has to choose a new warlock to replace Zelfrax, who botched the summoning and was killed by a Pit Lord.
- Red Right Hand: Shinfel's hand is apparently blacked, gnarled, and crippled from being directly touched by Cho'gall's magic. When you finally meet her in the game, this is represented by her wearing the Warlock tier 14 gloves, which have the sha's black-on-white color palette about them.
- The Speechless: Zinnen has been left functionally mute ever since an encounter with the Twilight's Hammer. In-game the only noise he ever makes is a soft growl.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: No one on the council likes anyone else, but they believe the results of their work will benefit them all.
- With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: One of the reasons the council travels in groups of two is if the power they seek makes one member go mad, the other can stop them before they become a threat to Azeroth, a failsafe that Kanrethad eventually falls victim to.