|Quotes • Headscratchers • Playing With • Useful Notes • Analysis • Image Links • Haiku • Laconic|
After the Kingdom of
Azeroth Stormwind is conquered by The Horde in the First War, its surviving people flee with ships to Lordaeron, led by their champion, Anduin Lothar. After the northern nations hear of the disaster, The Alliance is founded, consisting of the humans, elves, gnomes and dwarves. Lothar is appointed the Grand Marshal of the Alliance's armies and is joined by a group of other heroes such as Turalyon, a young paladin, Alleria Windrunner, an elven ranger and Khadgar, a wizard.
Meanwhile Orgrim Doomhammer, the self-promoted Warchief of the Horde, has rid his people of The Magocracy led by demon-worshipping warlocks. He immediately begins preparations for a continuation war, allying himself with the trolls, enslaving dragons,
hiring goblin mercenaries and creating undead sorcerers. After assembling his army, he sets off to make history.
long war both sides suffer casualties, betrayal and loss.
It is part of the Warcraft Expanded Universe.
This book contains the following tropes:
- The Alliance: Guess which.
- The Archer: Alleria Windrunner.
- Armies Are Evil: The Horde is violent evil scum, despite Doomhammer's attempts to provide some moral ambiguity.
- Badass Army: The Sons of Lothar.
- Badass Grandpa: Lothar.
- Battle Couple: Turalyon and Alleria Windrunner.
- Black and White Morality: Orgrim Doomhammer and Kilrogg Deadeye are pretty much the only orcs who get portrayed positively at all, and even they openly want to commit genocide on all Azerothian races to prevent themselves from suffering a death by starvation. And yet, some fans think the orcs get portrayed too positively.
- The Brigadier: The fantasy version. Lothar is the only one capable and willing to handle the burden of leading the heroes.
- The Captain: Daelin Proudmoore is at his most heroic and awesome here. It's terribly ironic that he dies in such an ignomous and pointless manner.
- Continuity Porn: Despite the removal of a lot of specific missions and the gnomes/goblins, there are ALOT of cameos in the book.
- Church Militant: Paladins don't exist before this war but are introduced by the Church of the Light.
- Civil Warcraft: Occurs with Doomhammer and Guldan. Also the Alliance has to deal with its own traitors, though no human-on-human fighting happens at all.
- Colonel Badass: Turalyon fulfills this role for much of the book.
- Crowning Moment of Awesome: Turalyon, glowing with the power of Light itself, picks up the slain Lothar's broken sword and handily defeats the stunned Doomhammer.
- Deus Exit Machina: Lothar spends half the book hunting orcs in a distant forest in the Hintherlands because had he been there for the battles that happened during that time, he'd have defeated the Horde single-handedly.
- Fantastic Racism: After the death of Lothar, Turalyon realizes the orcs are not from Azeroth and are not of the Light. He considers them nothing more than creatures that have no good in them and need to be slain.
- He gets better in Beyond the Dark Portal.
- Fate Worse Than Death: Ogrim Doomhammer's capture at the hands of the Alliance to stand trial for his crimes.
- Fridge Brilliance: A lot of this book is fairly straight High Fantasy good vs. evil. Just like the original Warcraft 2. Nothing wrong with that. A great deal of the book's best parts come from the fact that the Orcs will ultimately become heroes in spite of everything everything accomplished here. Furthermore, Damn near every good guy and their nation suffers a horrific end or Fate Worse Than Death.
- Honor Before Reason: During the Horde's siege of the capital of Lordaeron, they are very close to breaking through the city gates and razing the city to the ground, which would likely spell doom for the Alliance, as Lordaeron is the glue holding it together. Just then, Gul'dan decides to make his move, taking two clans on a personal quest for power. Hearing of this, Orgrim Doomhammer is faced with a choice: he can continue the siege and secure victory, or he can send a full third of his remaining forces to hunt down and punish the traitors at the cost of victory. Being an (more or less) honorable orc, he goes with the latter. Not only is he left with an insufficient force to break through the gates but the Blackrock clan he sends to punish the renegades gets massacred at sea by Kul Tiras forces (who knew that ships needed to be armed?).
- The Horde: Guess.
- Karmic Death: Gul'Dan is destroyed by the guardians of the power he sought to wield; him dying alone realizing that he's been a pawn all along was just the icing on the cake.
- Number Two: Turalyon is Lothar's most trusted lieutenant and the one who takes over for him when he dies. aka the player character from the game.
- Messianic Archetype: Lothar. Also Turalyon
- Offscreen Moment of Awesome: The dragon riders make their first appearance. The gryphon riders take off to engage them in battle for the first time. The scene cuts to Turalyon getting his men out of the fire.
- Planet Looters: Pretty much the role of the Horde in Warcraft 1 and 2.
- Proud Warrior Race: Doomhammer tries to get the Orcs back into this.
- The Quisling: Aiden Perenolde
- Straw Civilian: Aiden Perenolde.
- Supporting Leader: Lothar can be argued to be this, despite being close to a main character.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Zul'jin disappears with little resolution or mention.