This is going to be a look or summary into each faction, with the hopes of helping anyone considering starting WoW or trying out RP within the game and trying to decide which one they want to side with or, if they have already chosen which side they want to be on learning more about where they came from and why they are how they are. I hope to give a slightly better idea of the atmosphere and story-line to each side as it currently stands. That said: I have not played any of the original Warcraft RTS’s. They are lingering on my To Do list as ever, and I came to WoW just a little ways into the TBC expansion, so I am in no way an expert. This will not be a complete and conclusive look into the full history of each faction, but more a concise and relevant accounting for players trying to get the idea and feel of the Horde, along with the generic lay of the land in terms of history and major events.
More Articles in the Beyond the Basics Series:
- Beyond Basics: Loaded Lore – The Horde Part 1
- Beyond Basics: Loaded Lore – The Horde Part 2
- Beyond Basics: Roleplaying Bar Staff
- Beyond Basics: Balancing IC and OOC
- Beyond Basics: All Kinds of Canon
- Beyond Basics: Six Good Roleplay Habits
The Horde: Were Not Always What They Are Now.
Occasionally, you find characters who claim to have been born within the Horde, or elves that were raised by orcs. These situations are simply not feasible by the time-line. While I am all for bending to make things work, sometimes they just don’t,. sometimes it is not bending, it’s breaking. This is one of those times. The Horde is only roughly eighty years old. Even then, that is not the Horde as it is known today, which is closer to be being twenty years old. Furthermore, the Blood Elves and Forsaken only joined this New Horde somewhere in the region of ten years ago. If your character is part of the Horde, take into account their age, at least roughly, because unless they are an orc chances are they have not –always- been part of the Horde. If they are an orc, this Horde will not be the one they grew up with; it’s likely gone from mass murdering cult to hippy commune and back again double-time. So let’s rewind a bit. Or a lot; we’re playing by ear here.
The orcs come from Draenor, more commonly known to the player base as Outland (Outland being the Draenor of the current timeline.When they released Warloads of Draenor they introduced a second Draenor that exists in an alternative timeline, brain melting yet? Excellent) the area brought into play with the Burning Crusade expansion. Draenor is another world. The continent does not exist on Azeroth. They are technically aliens. Which means that unless you’re an orc or a draenei, you weren’t born there. Sorry chums, you were slumming it with the rest of us on Azeroth. But back to our Alieums: orcs lived on Draenor in a clan-based system, in relative peace with the Draenei until the Burning Legion turned up like bad salesmen and started messing with the water.
We’ll go into that more in the orc-specific topic, but to sum up: the orcs went a little bit blood-crazy and hyper-aggressive. Meanwhile, our sleezy salesmen demons were whispering sweet nothings into their once-peaceful shamistic leaders’ ears and pumping them up for a good ol’ fight. You know how it goes.
Lookit those puny little humans and elves, what do they need all that land for anyway? Wouldn’t you dudes put it to better use? Or you know…just burn it all down.
The First War.
But hey-ho, it works, and then you have a full scale invasion of Azeroth via the Dark Portal and the First War kicked off with a bang, taking place around Year 0 on the King’s Calendar and lasting a year. The orcs won the First War at Stormwind, because let’s be honest, who really saw that coming? A rampaging, blood-lusting, green-skinned horde of monsters, pouring up from seemingly nowhere? They’d have locked you up for raving about it. Anyway, the orcs chased the humans north to Lordaeron. Under the leadership of Anduin Lothar, they sought refuge with King Terenas Menethil II (That’s Arthas’ daddy). The two human kings formed the Alliance of Lordaeron, which brought together the seven human kingdoms, dwarves, gnomes, and even the reclusive High Elves of Quel’Thalas in the far north. Because these green bastards were giving even the elves the hebejibies now.
Meanwhile on Green Team: in the hunt for ever greater power, Good Old Gul’dan, the leader of the Horde’s Shadow Council, fell into a coma after he don goofed, and Doomhammer, ever the optimist, took his chance. While the orcs fell to infighting and bickering over whose spear was whose, Doomhammer destroyed the Shadow Council and Blackhand, the puppet Warchief. Gul’dan woke up and no doubt shat himself just a little before swearing fealty to Doomhammer, as well. In the hopes that nice presents might buy the big guy’s affection, Gul’dan began creating the Death Knights, to serve along with their trolls and ogres.
Then The Second War.
Six years after they laid waste to Stormwind, the orcs began their northern offensive, inventively named ‘The Second War’. During this, Zul’jin, leader of their trollish allies, was captured by the humans, inspiring Doomhammer to belt in and rescue him like Princess Peach. Your trollish chieftain is not in another warcamp, Zul’jin was saved and another oath of fealty was checked off Doomhammer’s wishlist the trolls were even agreeing to hand over the plains of Loraeron to the orcs. In return, they would move further north to retake their ancestral homeland from the High Elves. These attacks pushed their way all the way north to the borders of Eversong itself, and in doing so enraged the elves enough to see them finally put their full effort into the Alliance – and, you know, actually pull their weight. Which they are perfectly capable of doing, just very rarely inclined to do. The Allied forces, hand in claw with the Red Dragonflight, pushed back the enemy forces. With their defeat, their dark power was broken and Thrall was allowed the chance to awaken the dormant spirituality of his people, freeing them from the Legion’s control. The Horde was changed. We’ll save the hippy commune bit for part two!
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