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Recap / World of Warcraft

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A story recap for the MMORPG video-games of the Warcraft franchise.

Click for the story concerning the original RTS games prior to World of Warcraft

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     World of Warcraft 

World of Warcraft
Awhile after the events of Warcraft III: Frozen Throne, Thrall expanded his ranks by inviting Sylvanas' undead Forsaken into his Horde which consisted of his Durotar Orcs, Cairne's Bloodhoof Tauren, and Vol'jin's Darkspear Trolls. Meanwhile, Magni's Ironforge Dwarves, Gelbin's Gnomes, and Malfurion's Night Elves, pledged their loyalties to the Alliance; guided by the Human kingdom of Stormwind.

Some setting changes amongst the factions have also occurred. The Alliance Gnomes were forced to take shelter amongst the Dwarves of Ironforge after a plan to cleanse the nearby Gnomeregan capital city of a Trogg invasion with a Gnome-crafted disease had gone horribly wrong, and transformed many Gnomes into leper variants that turned hostile against their race. Meanwhile on the Horde side of things, the Trolls of the Darkspear Tribe were forced out of the Echo Isles, and have taken residence on the Durotar mainland after Hexmaster Zalazane turned traitor, and mind-controlled many of his fellow Darkspear trolls to work for him, and takes control of the isles.

Some time after, it turned out that Stormwind's king, Varian Wrynn, had mysteriously disappeared en route to Theramore Isle; having been taken captive by the Defias Brotherhood, and imprisoned at Alcaz Island. As a result of Varian's disappearance, Highlord Bolvar Fordragon becomes the temporary Regent of Stormwind due to Varian's son, Prince Anduin, being too young to be crowned the next King. It is soon discovered that Bolvar's services were affected through mind-control of the black dragon, Onyxia, who ruled Stormwind in disguise as the human noblewoman, Lady Katrana Prestor. Meanwhile, a major 3-way-war within the interiors of Blackrock Mountain had exploded between Rend's Dark Horde, Ragnaros' Elementals, and Dagran's Dark Iron Dwarves, for control of the spire.

Raid: Onyxia's Lair

Fighting out of his imprisonment, Varian is able to return to Stormwind, and Onyxia's cover is finally blown. The black dragon drops her Prestor masquerade, and takes Prince Anduin captive; escaping to her lair at Dustwallow Marsh. Tasked by their faction leaders, the heroes of the Horde and Alliance raid her Dustwallow home to rescue Anduin, and defeat Onyxia for good.

Rend's Dark Horde

One storyline within the Blackrock Mountain was the battle against the false Orc Warchief known as Rend Blackhand; the son of the first ever Warchief from Warcraft I. As it turned out, Rend had been building up his own force of Orcs, and such, known as the Dark Horde within the upper fortress of the mountain, and managed to form an alliance with Nefarian of the Black Dragonflight to help bolster his numbers with Black Dragons. The two conspired together to create an army that would one day be unleashed on the world, but ended up having their plan foiled due to Thrall tasking heroes of the Horde to enter Rend's stronghold, and kill the Dark Horde Warchief for good.

Dagran's Dark Iron Dwarves

Close by, Blackrock Mountain was also the location of the war against the hostile Dwarves of the Dark Iron clan. Its ruler, Emperor Dagran Thaurissan, had supposedly kidnapped Magni Bronzebeard's daughter, Moira (She was actually seduced by him, and got pregnant with Dagran's child), which forced heroes from the Alliance, as well as the Horde who saw an opportunity to have better relations with the Ironforge Dwarves, to raid the Dark Iron capital city within the depths of Blackrock Mountain to save Moira. The threat was eventually vanquished due to the death of Dagran. However, because Moira had fallen in love with the Dark Iron emperor, she ends up hating her father for the attack, and chooses not to return to Ironforge.

Raid: The Molten Core

Within Blackrock Mountain, the ancient elemental fire-lord, Ragnaros, resurfaced to endanger both the Horde and Alliance, and made his home within the spire's molten core. The heroes of the Horde and Alliance fought back against his fire elementals into the heart of Blackrock Mountain, and were able to send Ragnaros back to the Elemental Plane.

Patch 1.6 - Raid: Assault on Blackwing Lair

Deep within Blackrock Mountain, the black dragon, Nefarian, conducted twisted experiments with the blood of other dragonflights. Intent on seizing the entire area for his own, he recruited the remaining Dark Horde, a rogue army that embraced the demonic bloodlust of the old Horde. These corrupt orcs, trolls and other races battled against the Ragnaros and the Dark Iron dwarves for control of the mountain. Nefarian created the twisted chromatic dragons and a legion of other aberrations in his bid to form an army powerful enough to control Azeroth and continue the legacy of his infamous father, Deathwing the Destroyer. Nefarian was vanquished by the heroes from the Horde and the Alliance.

Patch 1.7 - Raid: Rise of the Blood God

Years ago, in the ruined temple of Atal'Hakkar, loyal priests of the Blood God, Hakkar the Soulflayer, attempted to summon the wrathful deity's avatar into the world. But his followers, the Atal'ai priesthood, discovered that the Soulflayer could only be summoned within the Gurubashi tribe's ancient capital, Zul'Gurub. Newly reborn in this jungle fortress, Hakkar took control of the Gurubashi tribe and mortal champions of the trolls' mighty animal gods. The Soulflayer's dark influence was halted when the Zandalari tribe recruited heroes and invaded Zul'Gurub.

Patch 1.9 - Raid: The Gates of Ahn'Qiraj

The great desert fortress of Ahn'Qiraj, long sealed behind the Scarab Wall, was home to the insectoid qiraji, a savage race that had once mounted an assault to devastate the continent of Kalimdor. But something far more sinister lurked behind Ahn'Qiraj's walls: the Old God C'Thun, an ancient entity whose pervasive evil had suffused Azeroth since time immemorial. As C'Thun incited the qiraji to frenzy, both the Alliance and Horde prepared for a massive war effort. A mixed force of Alliance and Horde soldiers, dubbed the Might of Kalimdor, opened the gates of Ahn'Qiraj under the command of an orc named Varok Saurfang. The heroes laid siege to the ruins and temples of Ahn'Qiraj, and vanquished C'Thun.

Patch 1.11 - Raid: Shadow of the Necropolis

In the Lich King's haste to spread the plague of undeath over Azeroth, he gifted one of his greatest Lich servants, Kel'Thuzad, with the flying citadel of Naxxramas as a base of operations for the Scourge. Consistent attacks from the Scarlet Crusade and Argent Dawn factions weakened the defenses of the floating fortress; enabling an incursion from the heroes that led to Kel'Thuzad's defeat. However, a traitor among the ranks of the knightly order of the Argent Dawn ran away with Kel'Thuzad's cursed remains and fled to Northrend, where the fallen Lich could be reanimated.


    World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade 

World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade
The Doom Lord, Kazzak, reopened the Dark Portal to Outland; flooding Azeroth with the ravenous demons of the Burning Legion. However, expeditions from the Horde and Alliance pass through the gateway to stop the invasion at its source.

Not being able to rely on the Alliance anymore, the Blood Elves join the Horde ranks in the hopes that they can reunite with their prince on the other side of the gateway. They also begin to liberate Quel'Thalas from the remnants of the Scourge left over from Arthas' warpath in order to rebuild their once-glorious elvish kingdom. In addition, the Draenei have joined the Alliance ranks after their dimensional ship, the Exodar, crash lands off the coast of Kalimdor on Azuremyst Isle; seeking out allies against the Blood Elves who had sabotaged their ship.

On Outland's desiccated Hellfire Peninsula, the Alliance discovered several of their heroes who had crossed through the portal many years before, while the Horde made contact with the Mag'har; a group of 'uncorrupted' orcs led by Grom Hellscream's own son, Garrosh, who had not participated in their race's original invasion of Azeroth. The expedition into Outland dragged Horde and Alliance armies further into conflict with the agents of the Legion and the lieutenants of Illidan Stormrage, who had claimed the shattered realm for his own. The expedition also eventually leads to a major battle against the former Blood Elf prince, Kael'thas Sunstrider, who had abandoned his loyalty to Illidan to serve the Burning Legion's current Demon Lord, Kil'jaeden.

Raid: Karazhan

Karazhan used to be the home of the last Guardian of Tirisfal, Medivh, but after his death, the tower was left abandoned for a long time. Recently however, the tower came back to life as the Burning Legion was no doubt attracted by the arcane powers that never left the tower. Heroes would enter Karazhan to discover the purpose of the tower being reactivated, and would come across Prince Malchezaar attempting to accomplish a vague goal that had been given to him by the Burning Legion.

Raid: Gruul's Lair

Throughout exploration around the Blade's Edge Mountains of Outland, heroes of the Horde and Alliance would come across corpses of the Black Dragonfight having been impaled by the spikes that make up the mountains of the area. As it turns out, these powerful Dragons had been hunted by a powerful hostile Ogre clan known as the Gronn led by their brutal Overlord, Gruul the Dragonkiller. To make sure that the Gronn don't pose a threat to the Azeroth expedition, heroes from the Horde and Alliance storm into the Dragonkiller's lair to dispose of Gruul for good.

Raid: Magtheridon's Prison

Following his defeat to Illidan's forces in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, Magtheridon would end up getting dragged to a prison beneath the Hellfire Citadel where he would remain locked up, and guarded by the fel orcs of the fortress. Here, Magtheridon is used as a tool to further bolster Illidan's army with new fel orcs transformed from the pit lord's blood. However, Illidan's scheme is brought to an end when heroes from the Horde and Alliance break into Magtheridon's prison, and finish off the pit lord for good.

Raid: Serpentshrine Cavern

Throughout Zangarmarsh, heroes from the Horde and Alliance witness the Naga's efforts to drain the swamp of all its water through the Coilfang Reservoir due to water in Outland being a rare commodity that will be required to keep Illidan's forces hydrated. Lady Vashj, still loyal to her master Illidan, monitors the Coilfang operations from her seat of power within Serpentshrine Cavern, but is eventually dealt with when heroes from the Horde and Alliance invade her lair, and kill her for good. In her dying breath, Vashj apologizes to Illidan for her failure.

Raid: The Eye of Tempest Keep

A faction of Blood Elves known as the Scryers, arrive at Outland's Shattrath City to inform everyone that the Blood Elf Prince, Kael'thas Sunstrider, has ended his allegiance with Illidan to become a servant of the Burning Legion; betraying the Blood Elf people who had always looked up to him as their savior. Setting up his base of operations in the dying Outland territory of Netherstorm, heroes of the Horde and Alliance discover that Kael had set up Manaforges throughout the area to siphon mana from the Twisting Nether, which is then sent to his stronghold of Tempest Keep in order to activate the Cipher of Damnation, a spell that could bring disastrous results to Outland. Here, heroes of the Horde and Alliance storm the inner palace of the keep known as The Eye to recover the cipher, and force Kael to retreat. However, despite his plan at Tempest Keep being foiled, Kael appears in Shattrath to introduce the world to his master, Kil'jaeden, and departs with the Burning Legion to return at a later time.

Patch 2.1 - Raid: The Black Temple

In his quest to reign over all of Outland, Illidan the Betrayer had established a mighty stronghold for his forces within the Black Temple, a former Draenei citadel. Yet his influence began to wane after the defeat of his most trusted lieutenants, including his second-in-command, the Naga Sea Witch, Lady Vashj. The resulting window of opportunity permitted Akama, an elder sage of devolved Draenei known as the Broken, to rebel against the self-styled "Lord of Outland." Along with Illidan's former jailor, the stoic night elf Maiev Shadowsong, Akama helped a group of heroes infiltrate Illidan's seat of power and put an end to the Betrayer's reign once and for all.

Patch 2.3 - Raid: The Gods of Zul'Aman

After years of battles fighting alongside the old Horde, the troll warlord, Zul'jin, retired to the city of Zul'Aman, capital of the Amani trolls. Here, he called upon mysterious dark powers to rebuild his army. While the eyes of Azeroth focused on the fight against the Burning Legion and their expedition to Outland, treasure-seekers invaded Zul'Aman, rekindling Zul'jin's hatred of the outside world—particularly, the High Elves of Quel'Thalas. Upon hearing that these newly christened "Blood Elves" had become part of the Horde in his absence, the infuriated Zul'jin declared war on both Horde and Alliance.

Patch 2.4 - Raid: Fury of the Sunwell

Fresh from his defeat in Outland, Kael'thas Sunstrider returns to the Blood Elf city of Silvermoon. Rather than lead his people to glory as he had promised, the disgraced prince betrays them. Kael'thas had plotted to use the legendary Sunwell, source of the Blood Elves' magical power, to summon Demon Lord Kil'jaeden into Azeroth. However, they are greeted by the Shattered Sun Offensive; a joint task force of Blood Elves and Draenei backed by heroes from the Horde and Alliance. With the help of the dragon, Kalecgos, and the Sunwell's mortal form, Anveena, the offensive is able to put a stop to both Kael'thas and Kil'jaeden; purifying the Sunwell with the help of the draenei prophet, Velen.

     World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King 

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King
In the wake of the Sunwell's purification, a period of suspicious silence swept over the world. As if on cue, the undead Scourge launched a massive assault against the cities and towns of Azeroth, this time extending its reach far beyond the Eastern Kingdoms. Under pressure to respond with a full army, Warchief Thrall deployed an expedition force to Northrend led by Overlord Garrosh Hellscream. Varian Wrynn, having been restored as the king of Stormwind City, sends an equally powerful Alliance army, commanded by Bolvar Fordragon, to defeat the Lich King—and any Horde forces who would stand in their way.

Assault on New Avalon

The Lich King's opening move came when the dread citadel Naxxramas suddenly left the Eastern Plaguelands. Residents had little time to rejoice as before long another, more powerful necropolis appeared in the skies above New Avalon, Acherus: The Ebon Hold, lead by none other than the Lich King himself. From this new fortress, Arthas set loose an army of newly-minted Death Knights upon the settlements of the Scarlet Crusade. The townships of Havenshire and New Avalon quickly fell to sword and flame, the inhabitants slaughtered and raised up for the growing undead army. Eventually, High General Abbendis decided to cut their losses and retreat, but not before the Scourge intercepted a message that Crusade forces from Hearthglen and Tirisfal were marching to assist. Instead, they found themselves in an ambush, as the Death Knights, astride powerful frostwyrms, laid waste to their remaining forces.

With the Scarlet Crusade in ruins, Arthas turned his attention to the other thorn in his side, the Argent Dawn at Light's Hope Chapel. He sent his now battle-tested Death Knights at the head of a ten-thousand strong force comprised of ghouls, abominations, undead Vrykul and Val'kyr and virtually every other minion at his disposal under the command of Highlord Darion Morgraine, wielding the corrupted sword Ashbringer, and sent them against a defending force of three hundred. The battle did not go as expected, however. The Argent Dawn was more resilient than anticipated and the Ashbringer began to fail the Highlord. The Scourge forces were eventually brought to heel and made to stand before the paladin Tirion Fording. Tirion declared that the Death Knights had been deceived and betrayed by the Lich King, but Morgraine would not listen, until he saw a vision of his father, and realized that Arthas had indeed betrayed him. The Lich King appeared soon after, admitting that this was all a ploy to draw Tirion into the open, but before he could claim the paladin's life, Darion threw the Ashbringer to him. Tirion purified the sword and was able to drive Arthas away. He then gathered those present, calling the Argent Dawn and Knights of the Silver Hand to join forces to defeat the Scourge once and for all, forming the Argent Crusade. Darion likewise pledged the support of the Death Knight, now known as the Knights of the Ebon Blade, to the fall of Arthas. Before that could happen, they had to secure Acherus as their base, which meant clearing out leftover Scourge forces. Once that was done, Darion sent emissaries to the Alliance and Horde, offering their support. Though initially skeptical, King Varian and Warchief Thrall accepted the turned Death Knights into their forces.

Battle of the Undercity

The Alliance and Horde eventually led a combined offensive on the Lich King's fortress entrance known as the Wrathgate. Before they could succeed however, Grand Apothecary Putress, and his Royal Apothecary Society followers (renegade Forsaken), unleashed a new plague that killed friend and foe alike, while his traitorous counterpart, Dreadlord Varimathras, seized the Undercity in a coup that nearly killed the Forsaken leader, Sylvanas Windrunner. The usurpers were slain for their vile deeds by armies of the Alliance and Horde and the Forsaken capital was restored. However, the debacle created suspicion among the Horde regarding Sylvanas’ loyalties. At the Wrathgate, many brave Alliance soldiers died at the hands of the Forsaken's Royal Apothecary Society; including King Varian's dear friend Bolvar Fordragon. Varian, who had always been wary of the orcs, discovered that the Royal Apothecary Society had been developing the new plague for years. In a rage he went looking for the Horde leaders, nearly starting a fight with Thrall, but Jaina Proudmoore teleported the Alliance out before the two could come to blows. The events that transpired during the battle convinced the human king that the Horde had been left unchecked for too long and he becomes increasingly hostile to the Horde for the rest of the campaign in Northrend. Likewise, Garrosh Hellscream becomes more and more obsessed with fighting the Alliance over Thrall's objections.

Raid: Malygos the Spell-weaver

Making his home in the Nexus on Northrend's western island of Coldarra, Malygos of the Blue Dragonflight has declared war on all magic users assuming that the weaker races usage of it will bring the Burning Legion to Azeroth again. With the help of Alexstrasza's Red Dragonflight, who have chosen to defend the mortal races from Malygos' crusade, heroes of the Horde and Alliance storm into Coldarra to confront the Blue Dragon within his icy fortress, and defeat Malygos for good.

Raid: Return of the Necropolis

Having recovered from his defeat at the Plaguelands of the Eastern Kingdom, Kel'Thuzad moves the Naxxramas to the Dragonblight of Northrend where the Necropolis lays siege to the Alliance stronghold of Wintergarde Keep. However, like before, champions of the Horde and Alliance storm into the Naxxramas, and defeat the Lich once more. Afterwards, if Kel'Thuzad was truly killed here was left ambiguous.

Raid: The Obsidian Sanctum

In the wake of the Nexus War against Malygos, Alexstrasza tasked her children with rooting out any danger and treachery within the Wyrmrest Accord. They quickly located a clutch of Twilight Dragonflight eggs within the Obsidian Sanctum. With their resources already strained in dealing with the Scourge and the blue dragonflight, Alexstrasza's consort, Korialstrasz, has sent word of the eggs to Dalaran's Council of Six in the hopes that able-bodied adventurers from the Horde and Alliance can enter the sanctum and destroy the twisted progeny of Deathwing. While there, the heroes manage to kill Sartharion, a Black Dragon that had been watching over the eggs within the sanctum.

Patch 3.1 - Raid: Secrets of Ulduar

The march of the Horde and Alliance armies through Northrend led to a number of victories, but these successes paled before a discovery made by a Dwarf explorer, Brann Bronzebeard, within the ancient titan complex of Ulduar. This mysterious fortress had long served as the prison of the Old God, Yogg-Saron, a being of unfathomable evil whose influence had spread into the continent of Northrend itself. With Brann's assistance, small bands of Alliance and Horde champions infiltrated Ulduar to confront Yogg-Saron, who blasted the invaders with cryptic visions: the millennia-old creation of an artifact known as the Dragon Soul, the assassination of Stormwind's King Llane, and a glimpse of the Lich King's future. With the help of the Titanic Watchers, the champions were able to subdue Yogg-Saron.

There was no time to celebrate, as a new challenge was coming. During the push to reach Ulduar, the fallen keeper Loken had been slain. His death activated a beacon that would alert the Titans of trouble on Azeroth. In response, they sent Algalon the Observer to determine the state of the world. If he found that corruption was widespread he would initiate world re-origination, which would wipe all life away, so they could begin again. Immensely powerful, the party found they could do little to stop him, however, their efforts were surprising; these tiny creatures were willing to throw themselves at death for a chance at life. Algalon began to wonder if others on worlds he had also shared such desire for life, lives that he had extinguished without a thought, and began to doubt his own calculations. He Brann a signal that would avert the re-origination process, which was rushed to the only place with enough power to activate it, Dalaran. There Archmage Rhonin sent the signal, calling off the re-origination process, and saving all life on Azeroth. For now.

Patch 3.2 - Raid: Call of the Crusade

In preparation for the final offensive against the Lich King, the Argent Crusade (a union of holy warriors from the Order of the Silver Hand and the Argent Dawn) assembled a base near Icecrown Citadel to gather resources, and identify the champions who would serve at the vanguard of their army. Highlord Tirion Fordring organized a tournament to test potential heroes of the Horde and the Alliance, but agents of the Scourge quickly emerged to sabotage the event. The undead attack culminated with the appearance of the monstrous crypt lord Anub'arak, who attempted to exterminate Tirion's elite force before it could be assembled.

Patch 3.3 - Raid: Fall of the Lich King

As the final battle against the Lich King approached, the human sorceress, Jaina Proudmoore, and the Banshee Queen, Sylvanas Windrunner, journeyed to the icy heart of Northrend. Both had come for different reasons: Jaina hoped to discover whether a part of her former friend and lover, Arthas Menethil, still lived while Sylvanas longed to take revenge on her old enemy. With the aid of these two heroes, Azeroth's champions stormed Icecrown Citadel and vanquished the Lich King's minions. Their confrontation with the Lich King involved thousands of souls consumed by Arthas' blade, Frostmourne. Ultimately, Arthas was slain with the aid of Tirion Fordring, and the heroes who triumphed over him learned a chilling truth about the existence of the undead Scourge.

Patch 3.3.5 - Raid: The Ruby Sanctum

Beneath Wyrmrest Temple, the guards stationed at the entrance to the Ruby Sanctum were slain, and the mystic stones have been shattered. The implications of the Red Dragonflight's sanctum being breached are dire, and little is known of the identity of the attackers, as the Black Dragonflight's numbers in Northrend are too limited to have pulled off such an attack after the previous raid on the Obsidian Sanctum. Upon investigation into the Ruby Sanctum, it's soon discovered that Halion, and his Twilight Dragonflight, had assaulted it with two goals in mind; the destruction of the Wyrmrest Accord, and the resurrection of their Black Dragonflight master, Deathwing. Heroes from the Alliance and Horde storm into the Ruby Sanctum to destroy Halion and his Twilight Dragons. However, Halions attempt to resurrect Deathwing was a sign of things to come for the following story.

     World of Warcraft: Cataclysm 

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm
Last seen in Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal, which took place more than two decades earlier, the evil dragon aspect, Deathwing the Destroyer (originally Neltharion the Earth Warder) has spent the time until now healing himself, and plotting his fiery return from the elemental plane of Deepholm. His return tears through the dimensional barrier within Azeroth, causing a sweeping cataclysm that reshapes much of the world's surface. In the midst of the world-wide disaster comes renewed conflict between the Alliance and the Horde, and with the elemental realms now open to the world, chaotic elemental spirits, and their tyrannical lords, emerged to help the Destroyer. To top it all off, the nihilistic Twilight's Hammer cult bring about the Hour of Twilight: the end of all life on Azeroth.

Living on the island of Kezan at the time, the goblin faction, the Bilgewater Cartel, are forced to evacuate to Kalimdor due to the cataclysm threatening the island's destruction. They take resident in the Kalimdor region of Azshara, and become a part of the Horde. Meanwhile, the cataclysm also brings about the destruction of the Greymane Wall at Silverpine Forest that has been protecting the citizens of Gilneas (cursed to being transformed into Worgen) from the outside world. With the wall's destruction, Sylvanas uses this opportunity to conquer the territory; forcing the Worgen to evacuate to Kalimdor where they take residence within the Night Elf capital of Darnassus, and become members of the Alliance.

The Cataclysm is also responsible for a number of political changes within the Horde and Alliance. With the wake of the cataclysm, the Horde's leader, the orc shaman Thrall, stepped down from his duty as Warchief of the Horde to better help the world of Azeroth as a whole. This duty was relinquished to the former overlord of the Warsong Offensive, the Mag'har orc warrior Garrosh Hellscream. Looking for ways to gather more resources and new territory for his people, Hellscream has initiated several brutal strikes against the Alliance, using the cataclysm to the Horde's advantage. The human king Varian Wrynn deployed many of his forces to fight against Garrosh's aggression, storming the Southern Barrens and Stonetalon Mountains, while Garrosh, unlike Thrall, embraced war with the Alliance. Meanwhile, Vol'jin leads a Darkspear assault to finally retake his Echo Isle home from Hexmaster Zalazane, and the Gnomes begin their campaign of retaking their capital city of Gnomeregan from the Troggs and Leper Gnomes.

Cataclysm also brought about the deaths of key figures from both factions. For the Horde, Cairne Bloodhoof had opposed of Garrosh's attacks against the Alliance, and challenges the new Warchief to a duel. However, due to interference from Magatha Grimtotem having poisoned Garrosh's weapon, Cairne loses his life in the fight, and Baine, the Tauren Chieftain's son, takes over as the new leader of the Tauren soon after. On the Alliance side, the cataclysm threatened the destruction of the dwarf capital of Ironforge; forcing the Dwarven king, Magni Bronzebeard, to activate a magic tablet the dwarfs had brought back from Ulduar to stop the earthquakes from destroying the city. However, the tablet ritual ends up transforming Magni into a crystallized statue; forever frozen in place at the heart of Ironforge. With the death of the king of Ironforge, Moira Thaurissan, now as the leader of the Dark Iron Dwarves, finally returns to the Dwarf capital to claim ownership of the throne for her son, Fenran Thaurissan. However, intervention from Varian, and Anduin, put a stop to her plan, and help establish the "Council of Three Hammers;" a regency consisting of the Bronzebeard, Wildhammer, and Dark Iron clans, to serve as the new rulers of the Ironforge Dwarves.

Raid: Blackwing Descent

Nefarian and his warped attempts to create a new breed of dragon were thought to be defeated after his death in Blackwing Lair. Yet it's discovered that his father, Deathwing, has reanimated Nefarian, and set him to work in Blackwing Descent atop the Blackrock Mountain. The gruesome experiments being conducted there are feared to be on a level of wickedness far surpassing Nefarian's previous crimes against nature. Dwelling on the lessons learned from his defeat in Blackwing Lair, Nefarian has burrowed deeper into the heart of Blackrock Mountain, and rebuilt his sanctuary. The Vault of the Shadowflame, a deep pit of cascading magma, is the heart of Blackwing Descent, and the location of horrific new experiments in undeath and magical augmentation. With the help of a young alchemist, Maloriak, the two of them continue conducting experiments to create the most powerful dragon to ever exist. However, Nefarian's plans are foiled once more by the arrival of heroes from the Horde and Alliance.

Raid: Bastion of Twilight

Cho'gall, the Ogre-Mage leader of the Twilight's Hammer Clan, had set up his base of operations in the Twilight Highlands where his forces battled with the armies of the Horde and Alliance for control of the area. The Bastion of Twilight stands as a dark symbol of the Old Gods' burgeoning power on Azeroth. Various branches of the Twilight's Hammer dwell deep beneath the towering form, considered the cult's foremost command center, along with their twisted Ogre-Mage leader. There, he and his servants conspire to bring the Old Gods' apocalyptic visions to fruition by bleeding Azeroth of all sanity, hope, and life. Heroes from said factions would lead the attack against the Twilight leader by storming his bastion stronghold in the Twilight Citadel; killing Cho'gall, and his Twilight followers, for good.

Raid: Throne of the Four Winds

Al'Akir the Windlord's personal lair, the Throne of the Four Winds, glides high among Skywall's boundless vistas above Uldum. Due to the barriers of the Elemental Plane having been ruptured, Al'Akir is free to travel Azeroth's winds at his leisure. He has mustered his fiercest tempests to scour Uldum of life, and seize control of the mysterious titan-forged Halls of Origination. With Deathwing's return, Al'Akir becomes one of the Destroyer's staunchest and most powerful allies, and called the Conclave of the Four Winds, ancient wind elementals nearly as powerful as Al'Akir himself, to aid in the elemental invasion of his former home. However, heroes of the Horde and Alliance travel up to Al'Akir's Skywall, and send the Windlord back to the Elemental Plane.

Patch 4.1 - Raid: Rise of the Zandalari

Alarmed by the terrible losses of life among all trolls, the Zandalari tribe traveled around the world to reunite their race to eventually rebuild their once-powerful empire. The Zandalari restored the fallen cities of Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman, and began to conduct bloody raids on territories that had once been "theirs." The burgeoning troll force hoped to lead a great war against the other races of Azeroth, but the honorable Vol'jin of the Darkspear tribe stood against their murderous agenda, and recruited champions from both the Horde and the Alliance to invade the ancient cities and stop the onslaught.

Patch 4.2 - Raid: Rage of the Firelands

After a ferocious series of battles, Azeroth's heroes banished Ragnaros the Firelord and his elemental minions from Mount Hyjal. Yet, threats to Hyjal persisted, including traitorous druids who had abandoned their allies and joined forces with the elementals. Fearing another elemental invasion, the defenders of Azeroth made a daring assault into Ragnaros' blazing realm: the Firelands. Among the seething flames of this elemental domain, Ragnaros was at his most powerful; only the greatest champions of the Horde and the Alliance, aided by druidic champions like Malfurion Stormrage, were able to defeat the Firelord.

Patch 4.3 - Raid: Hour of Twilight

At the peak of his insanity, Deathwing the Destroyer fought to drive the world into twilight—a devastated future bereft of all life. The Dragon Soul, a powerful artifact lost in the past, was the only weapon capable of truly stopping Deathwing, and so the guardians of Azeroth, the Dragon Aspects, sent a number of valiant heroes racing through time to retrieve it. Despite being attacked by the mysterious Infinite Dragonflight as they traveled the time-ways, the champions returned the artifact to the present and delivered it to the wise shaman Thrall. With his aid, the Dragon Soul was deployed against the Destroyer during a brutal battle that began in Azeroth's skies, and continued into the roiling heart of the Maelstrom at the center of the world. Through the combined efforts of the Aspects and their allies, the madness of Deathwing was finally brought to an end.

     World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria 

World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria
With the threat of Deathwing over with, Warchief Garrosh Hellscream seized the opportunity to strike at the Alliance, and expand the Horde's territory on Kalimdor. His assault completely obliterated the human city of Theramore, causing world-wide violence between the factions to erupt anew, as well as destroying Jaina's peace-loving view towards the Horde. A destructive naval skirmish left Alliance and Horde forces washed ashore on the fog-shrouded island of Pandaria, which had appeared in the open sea, defying modern maps and charts. As both warring factions established footholds on the resource-rich continent, they made contact with the noble Pandaren, one of its most prolific peoples. Here, The ancient panda race works with the Alliance and Horde in the hopes of dispersing the Sha: dark, ephemeral beings roused from beneath Pandaria by the bloody conflict.

In the meantime at the Wandering Isle (a giant turtle named Shen-zin Su that moves around the seas with a Pandaren training academy on its back), the Pandarens suffer a split in philosophy after two of their leaders, Aysa Cloudsinger and Ji Firepaw, fight over their method to take a crashed Alliance airship, the Skyseeker, out from the Wandering Isle's shell that was causing the turtle immense pain. The result of the fight causes the recruits to follow different paths. Those that follow Aysa Cloudsinger join the Alliance to become the Tushui faction while those that follow Ji Firepaw join the Horde as the Huojin faction.

Raid: Heart of Fear

The Sha of Fear has corrupted Grand Empress Shek'zeer of the mantids, and proceeds to launch a corrupted swarm onto the Dread Wastes of Pandaria to take control of the area. The Klaxxi, an elderly faction of mantids who did not fall to the Sha's corruption, looked to the outside for help, and brought in heroes of the Horde and Alliance to charge into the lair of the empress. The heroes reach Grand Empress Shek'zeer, who's empowered by the Sha of Fear to defeat her guests. However, the empress falls, and the Sha of Fear escapes the grasp of the heroes. With their empress now gone, the Klaxxi have now taken over as the leaders of the mantids.

Raid: Terrace of Endless Spring

Following its defeat at the Dread Wastes, the Sha of Fear relocates to the Terrace of Endless Spring, a sacred refuge hidden on the Veiled Stair of Pandaria. The Sha of Fear's arrival at the refuge ends up corrupting its people and guardians, and the heroes of the Horde and Alliance arrive to not only free the folk who have been corrupted, but to actually defeat the Sha of Fear this time.

Raid: The Mogu'shan Vaults

In order to uncover treasures and secrets that were hidden by the elusive Mogu Empire, heroes from the Horde and Alliance follow Lorewalker Cho into the Mogu'shan Vaults at Kun-Lai Summit. Fighting through the vault guardians, Cho's raid runs into a Zandalar troll group led by Gara'jal the Spiritbinder, who was also looking into the vault's secrets. After bypassing Gara'jal, Cho's group eventually reaches a giant construct known as the Will of the Emperor; an object developed by Thunder King Lei Shen, which helped build up the Mogu Emperor's army. Cho and company destroy the construct so that the army that it created does not pose a threat to the outside world.

Patch 5.1 - Landfall

The conflict between the Horde and the Alliance entered a bloody new chapter in Pandaria. As the two factions' armies clashed on the shores of the continent, Warchief Garrosh Hellscream dispatched elite troops to find the Divine Bell—an ancient mogu artifact capable of endowing his soldiers with unimaginable power. Garrosh's bold and reckless actions, however, had dire consequences for the Horde, including the outbreak of violence against the Darkspear trolls, and the expulsion of the Blood Elves from the once-neutral mage city of Dalaran. Although Garrosh claimed the bell, Prince Anduin Wrynn, and the Alliance secret agents of SI:7, closely tracked the Warchief's every move. On the highest peaks of Kun-Lai Summit, the brave prince thwarted Garrosh's plans, leading to the fabled mogu artifact's destruction.

Patch 5.2 - Raid: The Thunder King

While war between the Horde and the Alliance raged across Pandaria, the scattered Mogu plotted a return to their terrible former glory. They rekindled their historical alliance with the Zandalari trolls, who managed to resurrect the tyrannical Mogu emperor, Lei Shen the Thunder King, in the hopes of restoring Mogu dominion over the continent. The valiant Shado-pan rushed to suppress their enemies, creating a task force, the Shado-pan Assault, originally composed of Pandaren warriors and later supported by heroes of the Horde and Alliance. These fearless champions strove to defeat the Thunder King, though they also simultaneously served their factions' interests on Pandaria. Jaina Proudmoore led the Kirin Tor Offensive on a quest to uncover the source of all mogu power (and keep it from the Horde), and Lor'themar Theron took the Sunreaver Onslaught in search of mighty Mogu weaponry to aid a daring plan…an insurrection against Warchief Garrosh Hellscream.

Patch 5.3 - Escalation

Garrosh Hellscream's quest for power in Pandaria leads him to excavate part of the sacred Vale of Eternal Blossoms in search of a sinister artifact, a decision that puts the Horde at odds with the Shado-pan and other influential Pandaren. Meanwhile, in the Horde capital of Orgrimmar, Chieftain Vol'jin, and the Darkspear trolls are declared traitors that results in them being hunted by the Kor'kron, Hellscream's personal guard. Vol'jin's people retreat to Durotar, and the Barrens, to gather supplies and reinforcements for their counter-strike; relying on the support of their former Warchief, Thrall, and a particularly tenuous pact with the Alliance, whose interest in ending Garrosh's rule may not bode entirely well for the Horde...

Patch 5.4 - Raid: Siege of Orgrimmar

Garrosh Hellscream's reckless thirst for power has led him to do the unthinkable: from beneath the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, he has seized the desiccated heart of a dead Old God, Y'Shaarj, to use as a tool of war; unleashing horrors upon the sacred valley. The Warchief has also turned against other members of the Horde to create a purely orcish force of his own. Now this "True Horde" is amassing strength within Orgrimmar's iron ramparts. With Garrosh bent on total victory, he plans to demonstrate the potency of the True Horde by conquering not just the Alliance, but the whole of Azeroth. After champions purify the vale, they are called on to follow their faction in bringing Garrosh to justice.

Leaders of the Alliance and Horde lay siege to Garrosh's capital in order to topple the ruthless Warchief. The leaders of Azeroth then agree to prosecute Garrosh for war crimes in Pandaria. Vol'jin, for his contributions in Garrosh's downfall, is chosen as the new warchief of the Horde. King Varian Wrynn decides to end the conflict with the Horde, but warns them that the Alliance will return to end them should they return to their honorless warmongering ways.

     World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor 

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor
Before he can be judged for his war crimes, Garrosh escapes captivity with the aid of a renegade bronze dragon, Kairozdormu, who allows for Garrosh to time-travel back to the once orcish homeworld of Draenor and interferes with history; creating an alternate timeline prior to the rise of the Horde. Garrosh changes history by preventing his father, Grommash Hellscream, from drinking the blood of the Pit Lord, Mannoroth, which led to the orc's corruption by the Burning Legion, and played a major role in the events of the first three Warcraft RTS games. Instead, the clans unite into an "Iron Horde" using technology Garrosh brought from his reality; beginning a war of conquest on Draenor by killing Mannoroth, and leading to the construction of a time-traveling Dark Portal that would allow for them to travel through time to lay siege to the Azeroth of the present era.

Garrosh's Iron Horde storms through the Dark Portal only to be met by heroes that were called upon by King Wrynn and Warchief Vol'jin. However, a small band of Iron Horde forces led by Warlord Zaela manage to break through the Azeroth armies, and are able to find refuge in what used to be Rend's fortress for the Dark Horde of Blackrock Mountain. Heroes of the Horde and Alliance are then tasked to return to the Upper Fortress of the spire to dispose of Zaela's group. Soon after, with the help of Khadgar, the forces of Azeroth are able to fight the Iron Horde Vanguard back through the portal to the alternate Draenor.

The Azeroth Vanguard pursue their attackers through the Dark Portal to the alternate-Draenor, and use the Iron Horde's own weaponry to destroy the portal entrance on Draenor's side, but were subsequently forced to flee in order to evade the full might of the Iron Horde. The Azeroth Vanguard fled to the docks, and split into two ships with the Alliance following the Draenei, and the Horde joining the Frostwolf Clan. Afterwards, the Alliance and Horde established bases with portals to Azeroth to bring in supplies. The Alliance and Horde continue to fight back against the Iron Horde, and ultimately confront the escaped war criminal, Garrosh Hellscream, in Nagrand. Garrosh counters the efforts of the heroes, but were saved by the intervention of Thrall who challenges Garrosh to mak'gora - a duel of honor that can led to death. In the battle that followed, Garrosh initially has the upper hand, and blames Thrall for Garrosh's own failures, but Thrall counters by stating that what Garrosh had done were choices that he made on his own. Utilizing his elemental powers, Thrall finally kills Garrosh off for good.

Raid: Highmaul

With the creator of the Iron Horde dead, the Alliance and Horde adventurers set to dismantle the Iron Horde. The adventurers storm into the Gorian Empire's capital of Highmaul to defeat the Iron Horde's allies. The adventurers kill the Warlord of the Shattered Hand Clan, Kargath Bladefist, and proceed to slay the creations of the Gorian Empire, which included the powerful Gorian spell-breakers, and the Sorcerer King, Imperator Mar'Gok.

Raid: Blackrock Foundry

The Blackrock Clan, led by Warlord Blackhand, challenge the Horde and Alliance to assault their domain; the Blackrock Foundry. The adventurers take up the challenge and storm through the forge; destroying important Iron Horde machinery, and blocking further growth of the Iron Horde's weaponry. Finally, the adventurers proceed to Blackhand's crucible and slay him.

Patch 6.2 - Raid: Fury of Hellfire

Gul'dan confronts Grom and the remnants of the Iron Horde; offering Grom the blood of Mannoroth. Grom refuses, but with Gul'dan's offer of ultimate power, Kilrogg Deadeye drinks the demon blood despite Grom's pleading. The fel blood corrupts Kilrogg; turning him into a monstrous fel orc. Gul'dan assumes control of the Iron Horde, and Grom is imprisoned. It is at this time that the adventurers, with the help of Khadgar, construct a naval fleet to invade Tanaan Jungle, and take the fight to Hellfire Citadel to stop history from repeating itself. In Hellfire Citadel, the adventurers slay Kilrogg, and the remnants of the Iron Horde. Gul'dan is able to resurrect Mannoroth, but the adventurers kill him again, and free Grom (who joins them) and are able to kill Archimonde after Gul'dan performs another summoning. At the end of the battle, Archimonde, in his dying moment, flings Gul'dan through a portal to the Azeroth of the main timeline in order to fulfill his pact; setting the stage for the next story.

     World of Warcraft: Legion 

World of Warcraft: Legion
Having been sent to present Azeroth, "Alternate-timeline Gul'dan" spends his time exploring the hidden vaults of the Broken Isles; the location of the Tomb of Sargeras. Here, Gul'dan finds a dark crystalline prison containing the corpse of Illidan Stormrage, the former Lord of Outland that was supposedly killed during the events of The Burning Crusade.

Khadgar, who helped lead the Alliance and Horde against Gul'dan and the Iron Horde on the alternate Draenor, witnesses the return of the Burning Legion, and flies to the city of Stormwind to warn King Varian Wrynn of the coming invasion. Soon after, Gul'dan opens the portal for the Burning Legion upon the Broken Isles to invade into Azeroth once more.

Battle on the Broken Shore

Under the leadership of Warchief Vol'jin and King Varian Wrynn, the Horde and Alliance join forces once again to launch an assault against the Burning Legion and make landfall on the Isle's Broken Shores. Here, a massive battle against the Burning Legion takes place that has even Gul'dan entering the fray.

During the defense of the flank, the Legion hits the Horde's flank with a surprise attack, and Vol'jin is mortally wounded, Sylvanas calls the Horde to retreat, and and is named the next Warchief in Vol'jin's dying breath. Meanwhile, Varian calls a retreat of his own, but ends up stranded helping the Alliance escape and is killed by Gul'dan. With the death of Varian Wrynn, his son, Anduin, takes the throne as the next King of Stormwind.

With both the Alliance and Horde devastated by the battle at the Broken Shore, a new source of power is required to fend off the Legion invasion. The Heroes of the Alliance and Horde, together with the shunned demon hunters, must learn to master legendary weapons and the Pillars Of Creation, five Titan artifacts that hold the power to stop the Legion's invasion. Khadgar has the city of Dalaran teleport to the Broken Isles to serve as a beachhead to search for the Pillars and take the fight to the Legion again. With the leadership of the Alliance and Horde deep in transition, Khadgar calls upon the classes themselves to transcend their division and fight together.


In the ruins of the ancient Night Elf civilzation, the Demon Hunters battle the Legion for the Tidestone of Golganneth. But the Naga, Minions of Queen Azshara, also seek the Tidestone for their own ends. In the middle of this are an enclave of the Blue Dragonflight, menaced by corrupted and magic-starved elves, and the cursed ghosts of Azsuna's former population, stuck between Life and Death.


On the jagged northern peaks of Highmountain dwell a tribe of moose-antlered Tauren, as well as their allies the Drogbar. For assisting the Night Elves in battling the Legion milennia ago, the Highmountain Tauren were charged with protecting the Hammer of Khaz'goroth, another of the Pillars of Creation. But Dargrul the Underking, leader of the Drogbar, murdered the Highmountain Tauren's Chieftain and seized the hammer. With the help of the Class Orders, the Highmountain Tauren battled the Drogbar and took back the Hammer.


This home of druidic culture is under attack by Xavius, who has corrupted much of the area with the Emerald Nightmare, including Cenarius and Malfurion Stormrage. He steals the Pillar of Creation known as the Tears of Elune, and uses them to corrupt the former Green Aspect Ysera, sending her to attack the Temple of Elune. The Night Elves, along with the Order heroes, defend the temple, but at the cost of Ysera's life. But with the Aspect's blood, the Tears are purified.


Stormheim is mostly home to the Vrykul, the giant predecessors of Humanity. Sylvanas, freshly crowned Warchief of the Horde, has come personally to Stormheim on a very personal mission. Genn Greymane, who blames Sylvanas for Varian's death, has followed her. As the Worgen and Forsaken clash, both sides pull their respective champions back into the conflict even as they search for the Aegis of Aggramar, entering a competition held by Odyn.

Meanwhile, Slyvanas deals with Hela, and attempts to seize control of the Valkyr. Greymane intervenes, foiling her plans, while the Heroes battled the Legion and the Tideskorn Vrykul's self-proclaimed God-King Skovald.

Patch 7.0.3 - Raid: The Emerald Nightmare

Xavius once terrorized Azeroth with an affliction that almost obliterated the walls between reality and dream. His machinations ended in defeat, but he has been given another chance at vengeance. Now, Xavius leads the conquest of Val'sharah, where the tainted World Tree Shaladrassil spreads the Emerald Nightmare's corruption. With an army of vile satyrs at his command, Xavius will stop at nothing to vanquish all who oppose the Burning Legion. In return, heroes from the Horde and Alliance arrive at Lake Elune'ara within Kalimdor's Moonglade to go through the Rift of Aln. They enter the Emerald Dream, and dispose of Lord Xavius, who had been turned into a bloated, grotesque, monstrosity. Xavius returns to his Night Elf form upon defeat, the nightmare finally ends, and the artifact weapons wielded by the heroes obtain new power.

Patch 7.0.3 - Raid: The Nighthold

The largest structure in the Broken Isles and among the grandest in all of Azeroth, the Nighthold stands as a testament to the achievements of the Nightborne, a group of Night Elves who sheltered in their city of Suramar isolated behind a barrier since the first Legion invasion. Centered around the Nightwell, the fount of arcane energy that has sustained Suramar for centuries, these grounds were built as a haven from the worries of the world. But as a felstorm churns above the former temple of Elune across the bay, and Gul'dan himself now resides within the palace's walls, those worries now begin-not end-here. In Suramar, heroes of the Horde and Alliance aid the Nightfallen, a sect of Nightborne who were cast out from the Nightwell and are sick due to suffering from magic addiction. The players satiate these addictions by planting the arcan'dor, a tree that produces a fruit that negates the addiction. The Nightfallen help the players invade the Nighthold and stop the Nightborne from further helping the Legion. The players fight their way to the Nightwell to put Illidan's soul back in his body and to kill Gul'dan before he could put Sargeras' soul in Illidan.

Patch 7.1 - Raid: Trial of Valor

Since Loken's betrayal, Odyn has been trapped within the Halls of Valor as Helya plots in the shadows to claim the souls of his valarjar champions. In recent days, however, great heroes from the Horde and Alliance have arrived in the lands of Stormheim in the Legion's wake. Hoping that their might and determination could tip the scales and end Helya's reign, Odyn summons these champions to the Gates of Valor for a final test. The heroes enter the Halls of Valor where they complete Odyn's test to become his champions. They then fight against Helya's forces in Haustvald to reach the portal to Helheim where the final confrontation with Helya takes place. With Helya defeated, the curse upon the Halls of Valor has been lifted with Odyn and Illidan's soul now free from her control.

Patch 7.2 - Raid: The Tomb of Sargeras

Aegwynn used this sacred temple of Elune to lock away the defeated Sargeras' avatar. She hoped it would remain dormant, buried deep within the earth, but the lure of power has continued to draw foul entities to this site. When Gul'dan re-entered the tomb, he tore down Aegwynn's wards and opened a doorway for the Legion to invade. Now, the fel army tears at the vault, hoping to reclaim their master's power. While the Alliance and Horde celebrate their victory against Helya, the Burning Legion brings many ships to the Broken Shore to start the full invasion of Azeroth. The forces of Azeroth establish a new foothold on the Broken Shore while facing heavy resistance.

After fighting back the invasion forces, the heroes of the Horde and Alliance enter the Tomb of Sargeras with Illidan to end the Legion's presence on Azeroth. They come across the Avatar of Sargeras, which had been turned into a gateway to Argus, the home of the Burning Legion. Going through to the other side, the heroes comes across the demon lord, Kil'jaeden, on his ship flying over Argus. They manage to slay Kil'jaeden, but the end result is his ship exploding. Illidan uses the Sargerite Keystone to open a rift between Argus and Azeroth in order to escape the explosion, which ends up leaving Argus nearby Azeroth, setting the stage for the heroes of Azeroth to invade Argus.

Patch 7.3 - Raid: Antorus, the Burning Throne

Led by Prophet Velen, the champions of Azeroth embarked on a journey to the shattered world of Argus, home of the demonic Burning Legion, to put an end to their crusade against life. There, they joined forces with the Army of the Light—a host of Lightforged warriors who spent millenia fighting the Legion across the stars, and whose ranks included the legendary paladin Turalyon and ranger-captain Alleria Windrunner. Together with the champions of Azeroth, the Army of the Light mustered their scattered forces and embarked on a desperate quest to storm the Legion’s seat of power: Antorus, the Burning Throne. There, the heroes discovered that the fallen titan Sargeras had corrupted not only the soul of the world of Argus, but the titan Pantheon as well. After a tremendous struggle, the heroes of Azeroth defeated the soul of Argus and freed the titans, who imprisoned Sargeras for his transgressions—and appointed Illidan Stormrage as his jailor. As a last act of defiance, the Dark Titan plunged his sword into Azeroth, inflicting a deep wound in the planet that would leave her fate uncertain...

    World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth
With the deaths of Varian Wrynn and Vol'jin, the Alliance and Horde are in uncertain positions with new leaders. Both factions are confronted with a crisis in the form of the rare and powerful substance, Azerite. This powerful substance was unleashed upon Azeroth after Sargeras plunged his enormous blade into the sands of Silithus in Kalimdor. Azerite's destructive power cannot be overstated, and both factions begin rushing to take advantage of this substance, setting up mining operations, trade routes, and maneuvering fleets and armies to fight for access to it if necessary...

Patch 8.0.1 - The War of Thorns

"There is no honor in this! They will come for us now! ALL OF THEM!" ~ Highlord Saurfang
Sylvanas Windrunner, recognizing the power of Azerite and its ability to secure the future of the Horde, launches an attack on the Night Elf homelands. Her initial objective is to occupy Darkshore and Teldrassil and prevent the Alliance from using them as ports and supply posts for their own Azerite mining operations.

Alliance Heroes arrive in Astranaar not long after the Horde attack, find its buildings burning, the citizens massacred, and the streets overrun with enemy agents (while Horde heroes participate in attacking Astranaar, they have the option to not kill the civilians with unique dialogue if they do). Malfurian Stormrage erects a wall of wisps in Darkshore to halt the attack and buy more time. Alliance Heroes assemble more defenders while Horde Heroes work to bypass the wall. Highlord Saurfang crosses the mountains bordering Felwood and Darkshore with his own troops, attacking the Alliance from the rear. Darkshore falls to the Horde and Malfurion is wounded by Sylvanas and Saurfang. Sylvanas orders Saurfang to kill Malfurion, but Saurfang refuses as he didn't know that Sylvanas was going to intercede on his behalf, staining his victory. He secretly allows Malfurion to escape with Tyrande to Stormwind when Sylvanas leaves, though she discovers this almost immediately. Sylvanas, enraged that one of her own generals allowed a grievously wounded Alliance leader to escape, orders Teldrassil to be burned with Azerite-throwing siege weapons.\\\

Saurfang denounces the burning of the world tree, pointing out that this will invite a level of retribution from the Alliance that the Horde has never seen before. Sylvanas responds that Saurfang- and the Horde Hero- should not question her decisions and fall in line. They are complicit in this attack, she says, and the Alliance will come for them as well. The Alliance Heroes rush to Darnassus save as many civilians from the city as they can (it is impossible to succeed at this quest- no matter how quickly the Hero moves, hundreds die in the smoke and fire). Eventually they pass out from smoke inhalation and awaken in the Temple of Elune. The survivors and Alliance Heroes are returned to Stormwind via portal as Darnassus is consumed with uncountable deaths.

The Siege of Lordaeron

Anduin Wrynn sends the armies of the Alliance to attack the Undercity and capture Sylvanas, sacking Brill along the way. The Horde Heroes work to repel the assault while the Alliance tries to breach the gates. When an Alliance victory seems inevitable, Sylvanas uses the Forsaken Blight against both the Horde and the Alliance soldiers before it's magically dispersed by Jaina Proudmoore and the Alliance storms the city. The Alliance Heroes accompany Anduin, Genn, Jaina, Alleria Windrunner and Gelbin Mekkatorque in an assault through the above-ground sections of Undercity. They are eventually confronted by Saurfang at the gates of the throne room. He is defeated in battle with the Alliance but taken captive to Stormwind rather than killed outright.

  • Horde Heroes see Baine Bloodhoof hold the gates to Undercity shut behind Saurfang. He chastises Sylvanas for leaving Saurfang to die but continues to obey her commands "For the Horde" before leaving with Nathanos Blightcaller.\\\

Anduin, Genn, Jaina, and Alleria confront Sylvanas in the throne room and demand her surrender for the burning of Teldrassil. Sylvanas traps them in the throne room before flooding it with more Forsaken Blight and escaping through the glass ceiling. Jaina teleports the Alliance leaders out of the throne room and aboard an Alliance skyship where they watch Sylvanas, Nathanos, and Baine escape on their own skyship while the Blight consumes the entire Undercity, leaving it uninhabitable by both sides.

Alliance Campaign / Kul Tiras

"Beware, beware the Daughter of the Sea..." ~ Jaina Proudmoore
After Horde agents break valuable Zandalari prisoners out of the Stockades, King Anduin Wrynn realizes the Horde will seek the trolls' support for their powerful navy and an eventual invasion of the Eastern Kingdoms. Jaina Proudmoore and Genn Greymane lead a diplomatic mission to Kul Tiras to try and bring them back into the Alliance. Admiral Katherine Proudmoore now rules Kul Tiras since the death of her husband on the shores of Kalimdor, when Jaina stood aside and allowed the Horde to kill him in an effort to maintain the peace between both sides. Katherine imprisons her daughter Jaina for treason on the advice of one of Kul Tiras' nobles, Lady Ashvane. The Alliance Hero is sprung from a prison by a young woman, Taelia, and the scoundrel Flynn Fairwind. After reuniting with Genn, the Hero is tasked with restoring stability to Kul Tiras.

  • The mighty Kul Tiran fleet has gone missing at sea off the coast of the Stormsong Valley and the Kul Tiran Tidesages, those who guide the ships at sea, have been corrupted by Queen Azshara and the Old Gods. The Champion helps to save the few uncorrupted Tidesages, rescues the fleet from being handed over to Azshara, and repels a Naga attack at Fort Daelin.
  • Drustvar has been overtaken by a coven of witches serving the old tribal peoples, the Drust. They terrify and curse the Kul Tiran villages across the region, and Lord and Lady Waycrest are nowhere to be seen. The Champion saves the noble family's daughter, Lucille Waycrest, from false charges of witchcraft and helps her to re-establish an order of Witch Hunters, destroying the Coven.
  • In Tiragarde Sound, the Hero discovers that the Ashvane Trading Company is secretly providing Azerite weapons and gunpowder to the pirates of Freehold. The pirates attack and sack a Kul Tiran fortress, and while the Champion stops the attack from reaching Boralus it prompts Lady Proudmoore to abdicate and pass rulership of Kul Tiras to Lady Ashvane. The Champion disrupts this coup with evidence of Ashvane's wrongdoing and Lady Ashvane is imprisoned for treason. Lady Proudmoore reconsiders her isolation and prepares to re-enter the Alliance and mend her relationship with her daughter Jaina.

Meanwhile, the Alliance launches a campaign in the Zandalari Isles.

  • The Alliance lands in Nazmir and notices the aggression of the Blood Trolls toward the Zandalari. Attempts are made to open negotiations with the Blood Trolls to join the war, but find the trolls are completely hostile to both the Horde and the Alliance.
  • In Vol'dun, the Champion leads the 7th Legion Marines in a landing on the coast of the Shatterstone Harbor. The marines make contact with the Sethrak at the Terrace of the Devoted and help to defend it from siege and attack by a rival tribe.
  • In Zul'dazar, the Champion helps SI:7 investigate the remains of the pursuit fleet that attempted to bring Princess Talanji back to the Stockades, then helps the Alliance's Dark Iron Dwarves summon a destructive nature spirit to attack goblins on the Xibalba coast. They also assist Mathias Shaw with laying explosives on the hulls of the Zandalari fleet at harbor.
  • Night Elven general Shandris Feathermoon is tasked with eliminating several key Horde targets that pose dire threats to the Alliance, and enlists the Champion's aid in hunting them down. Among the targets are a ruthless, bloodthirsty Blood Elf magister, a member of Sylvanas' Shadow Huntresses, a powerful Vampire lord that seeks to form an alliance with Sylvanas, and finally Tradeprince Gallywix himself, leader of the Bilgewater Cartel Goblins. While Shandris and the Champion succeed in defeating the magister, the Shadow Huntress and the Vampire, Gallywix manages to escape by fooling the Alliance with a body double.

Horde Campaign / Zandalar

Sylvanas tasks the Horde Champion to break into the Stormwind Stockades and free Zandalari Princess Talanji with the support of First Arcanist Thalyssra and Rokhan. The rescue party finds Saurfang's cell in the Stockade but he refuses to leave with them while Sylvanas remains Warchief of the Horde. The Horde also locates the cell of the Prophet Zul, a Zandalari troll who instigated their empire's aggression on Azeroth during the events of Cataclysm. The party escapes the Stockades with Jaina on their tail, but Zul creates a diversion by setting the city of Stormwind ablaze, forcing the Alliance to save the citizens rather than chase after the rescue team.

With Princess Talanji rescued, Sylvanas now has the means to recruit the Zandalari Empire into the Horde. The party makes their way by boat towards the nation of Zandalar but encounter an Alliance pursuit fleet. The Alliance is held back by Talanji summoning the spirit of Rezan (known as the loa of kings). The Horde eventually arrives safely on Zandalari shores to return Talanji to her people. The Zandalari trolls remain hostile towards the Horde intruders, but King Rastakhan offers their guests a chance to prove themselves worthy of his support. Talanji figures that the best way to gain the support of the Zandalari is to clear out the corruption that the Rastakhan faces within his high council.

  • In Nazmir, the Horde champion supports Princess Talanji in dealing with the Blood Trolls, an aggressive tribe that worships Blood God G'huun (an Old God created on accident by the Titans) and attacks the Zandalari. The Horde champion puts a stop to the Blood Trolls' plan of trying to shatter the final seal on G'huun's prison in Uldir, which would have unleashed him on the world.
  • In Vol'dun, the Horde champion is tasked with tracking down General Jakra'zet, one of the members of the Zanchuli Council that sided with Prophet Zul. The Horde champion encounters a race known as the Vulpera, which are currently at war with the corrupted Sethrak. However, some Sethrak turn out to not be corrupted, and ally with the Horde champion and Vulpera. Following a rescue of Warguard Rakera, the Horde champion with the allied Vulpera and Sethrak battle against a group of enemy Sethrak known as the Faithless that have been attacking the Zandalari. The leader of the Faithless, Korthek, is currently searching for the remaining keys that will allow him to summon Mythrax the Devourer. The Horde champion eventually locates and defeats Krothek, but it turned out to be a diversion for General Jakra'zet to invade the Temple of Sethrallis, and retrieves the missing pieces needed to summon Mythrax.
  • In Zul'dazar, the Prophet Zul is revealed to be the secret leader of the Blood Trolls. Zul had allied with the Mogu in Pandaria and sacrificed many loa for additional power all to launch a coup against the aging King Rastakhan. The king is injured during the coup but is restored by the loas of kings and death (Rezan and Bwonsamdi). With the help of the Horde champion, Rastakhan and Rezan launch a counterattack against Zul and discover Zul's plan to resurrect the first king of Zul'dazar, King Dazar. A confrontation takes place at the resting place of the Zandalari kings, but Zul murders Rezan and is able to escape. Questing around Zul'dazar also reveals that Zul is in league with Queen Azshara and that they are working together to corrupt the Zanchuli Council.

Once the tasks in Nazmir, Vol'dun, and Zul'dazar are completed, the Horde champion supports the Zandalari in defeating Zul's army, and their summoned Mythrax the Devourer. Zul and Mythrax turn out to be in league with G'huun, and head off to Uldir to break the final seal to unleash the Blood God. The Horde champion with Rastakhan, Bwonsamdi and Talanji arrive to stop the release, and in the end, Mythrax succeeds in breaking the final seal, but is also held back long enough by Talanji for Rastakhan to kill Zul.

Raid: Uldir

The world is now at risk due to Mythrax breaking Uldir's final seal. G'huun the Blood God is released upon Azeroth while both the Horde and Alliance are at war. Champions of the Horde and Alliance are tasked with venturing into Uldir to face off against G'huun's champions, some of which include Mythrax and a resurrected Prophet Zul. They then face off against G'huun to rid the Blood God from Azeroth.

Patch 8.1 - The Tides of Vengeance

After disposing of G'huun, the Horde and Alliance return their focus to the war. For the Horde, they procure the Scepter of the Tides, a legendary artifact capable of controlling the seas. As for the Alliance, they dismantle a potential alliance between Sylvanas and the vampiric San'lyan Elves. The Alliance then begins to gear up for a preemptive strike against Zandalar. The goal being to cripple the Golden Fleet before it can be used against the Alliance. Thus driving a wedge between the Zandalari and the Horde.

Meanwhile, Tyrande Whisperwind and Malfurion Stormrage grow impatient regarding liberating Darkshore from the Horde's control, ultimately choosing to begin the offensive on their own against Anduin's advice. In order to maximize their chances, Tyrande undergoes a ritual to turn herself into the Night Warrior, the avatar of Elune's most wrathful and warlike aspects. To counter this, Sylvanas orders several Night Elven heroes who fell in the Burning of Teldrassil to be raised as Dark Rangers to bolster her forces.

As the battle for Darkshore begins, both the Alliance and Horde are blindsided by a new development. It turns out that High Overlord Saurfang, who had been defeated and captured in the Battle of Lordearon, has suddenly escaped Alliance captivity and is on the run. Sylvanas sends her Horde champions to track Saurfang down, ostensibly to extract him. However, it quickly becomes apparent that the search party is in fact an assassination squad, as Sylvanas suspects Saurfang of colluding with the Alliance in an attempt to dethrone her. While some Horde champions choose to side with Saurfang and help him escape the assassins, other champions remain loyal to Sylvanas and report Saurfang's and the dissenting champions' treachery to her.

Patch 8.1 - Raid: Battle of Dazar'alor

After finishing their preparations, the Alliance launches their attack on the Zandalari capital of Dazar'alor, their goal being to sever the budding alliance between the Zandalari and the Horde by dismantling the Golden Fleet and capturing King Rastakhan. Despite Anduin and Jaina's desire to capture him alive, Rastakhan is overwhelmed by the power of his pact with Bwonsamdi, and the Alliance champions are forced to slay him. Enraged by Rastakhan's death, the Horde champions launch a vicious counterattack on the withdrawing Alliance forces, which ends with both Jaina and High Tinkerer Mettatorque gravely wounded. As the Alliance leadership debates their next move, Sylvanas, infuriated by the Horde's defeat, resurrects Jaina's long dead brother Derek Proudmoore as a Forsaken, an act that horrifies the surviving Horde leaders, with the intent to use him as a sleeper agent to destroy the Proudmoore family from within.

Patch 8.1.5 - The Tides of Vengeance (continued)

The Alliance investigate into a group of loyalists who follow Lady Ashvane. Amongst letters that the loyalists were holding, they find evidence that Ashvane has decided to side with the Horde after they break her out of Tiragarde Sound's Tol Dagor prison. Meanwhile, Baine Bloodhoof has decided to turn on Warchief Sylvanas having had enough of her dishonorable tactics, and puts together a plan to return the newly undead Derek Proudmoore to her sister before his will gets completely overtaken by the banshee queen. After convincing Valeera Sanguinar to send a message to the Alliance about what he's planning, Baine along with the help of a Forsaken priest named Arthur Zelling infiltrate the Swift Vengeance prison ship, and free Derek from his captor, Jailer Hatewell.

Baine and Zelling then go about their plan to smuggle Derek out of Horde territory by meeting Jaina at a hidden location off the coast of Theramore. Their two ships meet, which Baine hands over the still sane Derek with no strings attached. Jaina worries for Baine knowing that he just committed treason against his Warchief, but Baine returns to the Horde anyway. Baine and Zelling arrive at Warfang Hold for a Horde meeting which Sylvanas suspects that there's traitors amongst them due to Derek's disappearance. Her spies lead her to believe that Zelling is responsible, but despite Baine revealing that he himself was the one behind it, she kills Zelling to send the Horde a message that treason in her ranks will not be tolerated. Afterwards, Sylvanas imprisons Baine for his actions as well, and plans to execute him at a later time. As for the Alliance, spies watching over Warfang Hold catch wind of Baine's dissent, and send a report back to Jaina to inform her of the situation.

Patch 8.1.5 - Raid: The Crucible of Storms

Within Stormsong Valley, a long-submerged evil stirs beneath the Shrine of the Storm. The whispers that drove Lord Stormsong to madness echo within the depths, a siren song of eldritch power. Those who listen and obey prepare dark rituals to carry out their master’s will. Whatever nightmarish schemes fuel their fanatical devotion, one thing is certain: they must be stopped. As it turns out, the evil beneath the Crucible of Storms is actually a piece of one of the Old Gods, N'Zoth. Interested in seeing if the Horde and Alliance are worthy enough to fight the naga's Queen Azshara, N'Zoth decides to set up a trial for champions who take on the Crucible of Storms. The god desires for them to come out victorious against its two minions, the Restless Cabal and Uu'nat. The champions recover 2 relics during the fight, but a 3rd relic known as the Tempest Crown is strangely absent.

Patch 8.1.5 - Recruiting Thrall

Saurfang goes through the portal to the broken world of Outland, and makes his way over to Nagrand. He finds Thrall's home, and informs the former Warchief that the Horde's falling apart due to Sylvanas' rule. Thrall wants nothing to do with it only wanting to remain with his family away from all the fighting, but he and Saurfang are suddenly attacked by two Forsaken assassins. After disposing of the assassins, Thrall realizes that the fighting is going to follow him wherever he goes, and while he still has no intention of being Warchief again, he agrees to join the fight alongside Saurfang.

Patch 8.2 - Rise and Fall of Azshara

The capital of the Naga arises after the assault in Dazar'alor during a time when the Alliance and the Horde are recovering from battle and licking their wounds. Both factions having lost a lot of their naval power, which makes it a perfect time for the Naga to strike, beginning their coastal invasions. Sylvanas obtains word that something is out in the sea and sends her forces to investigate, Jaina follows by sending her own champions. As champions of the Alliance and Horde venture into the great blue beyond, they find a crack leading to an ancient land between waterfalls, and fall into Nazjatar; the ancient land of the serpentine Naga. Azshara had laid a trap for the newly arriving champions, who have to evade her forces until they can power up. Along the way, each faction meets a group of allies who join their fight against the Naga.

Meanwhile within the Rusted Vault of Tiragarde Sound, a mysterious giant portal that was once closed is now open. Beyond this portal brings champions to Mechagon, the home of the robotic Mechagnomes. Amongst the Horde and Alliance, goblins and gnomes venture through the portal to explore the mechanical ruled lands of Mechagon. The ruler of this new land, King Mechagon, desires to turn anything flesh into robotic parts, which puts his robotic people at odds with the champions of flesh.

After breaking Azshara's hold on the Tidestone, the Alliance and Horde pushed into the Eternal Palaca, N'zoth's prison in the depths of Azeroth and confronted the queen of the Naga. Azshara lured the adventurers into the great chamber which bound the final Old God. As the heroes used the Heart of Azeroth to combat the Naga Queen, she siphoned the power from the Heart and broke the chains holding N'zoth within the Titan prison. While the adventurers defeated Azshara, N'zoth was loosed upon the world and fled into the depths of the seas.

Patch 8.2 - Baine's Rescue

With only a few hours left before Baine's execution, both the Horde and Alliance prepare a rescue mission. Lor'themar had learned through Spiritwalker Ussoh's spiritual visions of Baine's execution, which he tasks Horde champions to meet a new pair of allies in secret that have arrived in Orgimmmar, who turn out to be Saurfang and Thrall. As for the Alliance, Jaina informs King Anduin of Baine going against his Warchief, which the king desires for Baine's freedom given that they developed an honorable human/tauren friendship in the past. Anduin tasks Alliance champions to sneak into Orgrimmar alongside Jaina and Mathias Shaw.

Baine's execution is set to take place in Garrosh's former Underhold beneath Orgrimmar, which the Horde and Alliance rescue teams enter from opposite entrances. The Horde rescue team uses an invisibility totem created by Rokhan to bypass some of Sylvanas' guards in order to avoid as much Horde bloodshed as possible. Once the totem has run out, they task the champion to distract Dark Ranger Lenara and her trainees long enough for Saurfang and Thrall to sneak to the next area. Meanwhile, the Alliance rescue team fights their way through an area where Sylvanas' forces have been crafting Azerite weapons, and use the opportunity to dispose of some of Sylvanas' Azerite weapon arsenal.

Eventually, the two rescue parties meet outside the gate to the main hall of the Underhold, which Saurfang, Thrall, Jaina and Shaw all agree on an alliance to rescue Baine. The combined rescue party fights their way through Rowa Bloodstrike and other guards blocking the entrance, and reach Baine's location. Before getting the chance to free him however, it turns out to be a final trap set up by the arrival of a group of Blood Elf Sunreavers led by Magister Hathorel, who desire revenge against Jaina for initiating the purge of Dalaran. The rescue group fights through the Sunreavers, dispose of the prison crystals holding Baine, and hold off Hathorel long enough to free the Tauren Chieftain. Jaina then creates a portal to allow the rescue party to safely escape with Baine.

With Baine's rescue a success, Lor'themar figures that the Horde can now focus on disposing of Azshara and her naga in order to keep the focus away from Saurfang's rebellion taking root within the Horde. As for the Alliance, Jaina convinces her faction to go along with this plan as well where they will fight together with the Horde against Azshara to buy enough time for Saurfang.

Patch 8.2.5 - Banshee's Fall

With the Alliance and the Horde dissenters weakened by the machinations of Sylvanas and Azshara, Anduin and Saurfang call what's left of their armies together for a strike on Orgrimmar.

Sylvanas' Horde shores up the defenses of the city. Gazlowe's goblins, the Forsaken, and the Mag'har orcs renew their loyalty to the Banshee Queen. The hero and Nathanos kill Eitrigg for secretly betraying Sylvanas and returning to sow dissent within the city, then work to raise a citizen militia and collapse the pass between Razor Hill and Orgrimmar, cutting the attacking army in two.

Alliance and Saurfang Horde heroes land in Durotar and work to clear the path for the advance to the city gates, root out Sylvanas' saboteurs and push to the gates. At the city walls, Saurfang challenges Sylvanas to Mak'gora. While Sylvanas kills Saurfang, he succeeds in goading her into dropping her facade- that she never cared for the Horde. Even those most loyal to her, she considered pawns in a game she was playing at for stakes that could be greater than she was willing to reveal at the time. After the Queen flees, the gates to Orgrimmar are opened and the Horde is reunified under Saurfang's vision of a coalition steeped in honor. The Alliance and united Horde enter into a ceasefire to focus on the unleashed Old God N'zoth and his machinations...

Far across the sea, Sylvanas' loyal heroes find her at Windrunner Spire in the Ghostlands along with Nathanos and a few other undead. Sylvanas remarks that the end of the war has come, but the freeing of N'zoth will still serve her master's needs by creating even more deaths. The hero and Nathanos are dismissed by her, with a promise that they will meet again...

Patch 8.3 - Visions of N'zoth

N'zoth's forces are unleashed upon Azeroth and take over both Uldum in the South of Kalimdor and the Vale of Eternal Blossoms in Pandaria, with a gate to his twisted realm, Ny'Alotah the Waking City, being opened in either of the two regions. Adventurers venture into twisted visions of capital cities of the Horde and Alliance under N'zoth corruption in order to find resources to combat said corruption.