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Elementals. From left to right, top to bottom: Princess Theradras, Ahune, Ragnaros, Thunderan, common earth elemental, common water elemental, bog beast, common fire elemental, common air elemental.
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Elementals are manifestations of volatile energies[1] - elemental spirits that have attained raw physical form with the spirit remaining as the core.[2]

Elementals originated from forms of Light in the early days of the universe's formation. They are native to almost every world in the Great Dark.[3] Some have also been accidentally created when bits of magic seeped into coals, over the course of a few decades manifesting in a small elemental being of immense fortitude.[4] Other elementals have been created by mogu sorcerers who prefer more solid companions over beastly familiars.[5] Other elementals (albeit fel-corrupted ones) have been born solely from demonic magic.[6] Elemental cores seem to retain some semi-sentient properties after being defeated.[7] The elemental forces are ageless and unchanging.[8]

Elementals are an incredibly varied group. Those native to Azeroth are bound to distant realms known as the Elemental Planes and are usually servants of the powerful Elemental Lords that rule over each plane. Others are native to the actual worlds they reside on. If they are killed, their corporeal forms would simply manifest again in time.[9] Still others appear independent from any greater master, acting as individual beings. Sludge beasts share an elemental heritage.[10]

The reason that Azeroth's elementals are so chaotic is because, as it developed, Azeroth's unusually vast world-soul consumed much of the fifth element, Spirit, which is supposed to balance the other elements.[11] In contrast, the elementals on worlds plentiful in Spirit like Draenor are harmonious and work together.[12] Decay, the opposite of Spirit, can be used to bind an elemental to one's will and force the elements to obey. Those who use Decay are known as dark shaman.[13]


Elementals are chaotic by nature[14] and once raged freely on primordial Azeroth until the Old Gods arrived and enslaved them. As servants of the Old Gods, the elementals were later defeated by titanic forces and banished to a specially crafted prison known as the Elemental Plane. Although most elementals remain in the Elemental Plane, they can be summoned to Azeroth by those who seek to use their power.[1]

Little is still known about the elemental spirits and independent elementals, when and where they originate, and how they are connected to the Elemental Lords.

Over the millennia, some intelligent creatures of Azeroth have found ways to summon elementals and bind them to their service. Human mages are fond of summoning or creating Water Elementals for their brute force and imposing size. Ragnaros was summoned into the material plane by the Dark Iron dwarves three centuries ago, residing in the Molten Core until he was killed and banished to his home realm. Some shamans have demonstrated the ability to summon and control elementals. The Twilight's Hammer has used magical cages to create and control bound elementals

Of the four lords, only two remained under the control of the Old Gods: Ragnaros of fire and Al'Akir of air. Following the Cataclysm, these two sent their armies to attack Azeroth. Ragnaros laid siege to Mount Hyjal, seeking to destroy Nordrassil, but his armies were driven back by the Guardians of Hyjal, and he himself was killed. Al'akir attacked Uldum, joining with the Neferset tribe to destroy the other Tol'vir, and was also killed. While Therazane of earth and Neptulon of water were no longer in service of the Old Gods, their realms became battlefields following the Cataclysm, as servants of Deathwing invaded Deepholm and the naga invaded the Abyssal Maw. While the Earthen Ring was successful in fighting off the former, Ozumat captured Neptulon, who is now presumably under naga control.

The elementals of the Elemental Planes seem to have a complex royal power hierarchy, many having titles such as Baron, Lord, and Duke. Some of the most powerful offspring of the Elemental Lords are even known as Princes and Princesses.

Characteristics in World of Warcraft

In World of Warcraft elementals usually use abilities, attacks and spells related to their element. A fire elemental is for example likely to cast fire-spells, and a water elemental is likely to cast water-spells. They are often found close to environments that resemble their elements; water elementals are often found on coastlines and in lakes, fire elementals are often found close to lava or areas which has suffered from fire, stone elementals are often found in hills and inside caves, and air elementals are often found in windy areas like steppes and deserts. Elementals will also often drop elemental items related to their element. A fire elemental may for example drop a  [Heart of Fire], while a water elemental may drop an  [Essence of Water].

Basic elemental types

In the comic.

These creatures can be found in a large variety of forms, at least one for each of the four classical elements.

Elemental Variant
  • Generic Elementals
The most commonly seen form, wearing bracers of binding.
Elementals bound within the cages of the Twilight's Hammer
Creatures not bound by either cages or bracers
Elemental creatures that once served as foot soldiers for the malefic Old Gods.
Twilight's Hammer cultists who have ascended into elementals.
Mysterious elementals found only on Pandaria and the Wandering Isle

Specific elemental types

Some types of elementals have only been found in a single element.

Element Types
Primordial Essence

"Elemental" as a gameplay term

Many NPCs in World of Warcraft are classed as elementals for gameplay purposes, but may not actually be true elementals. They cannot be skinned, although the remains of stone-elementals may sometimes be mined by miners. Enchanters can enchant weapons with  [Enchant Weapon - Lesser Elemental Slayer] or  [Enchant Weapon - Elemental Slayer], which gives them bonus damage. The former will also cause the weapon to glow red, while the latter will cause it to glow in all kinds of colors. And all elementals can be banished by warlocks.



In the RPG

The RPG Icon 16x36.png This section concerns content exclusive to the Warcraft RPG and is considered non-canon.

When the Old Gods were defeated and imprisoned by the Titans, the Titans banished all elementals to the Elemental Plane. The Elemental Plane is a violent and dangerous place where elementals of one type battle with all others in a never-ending conflict to expand their territory. It is no wonder, then, that some elementals attempt to escape from the unceasing struggle by traveling to Azeroth, where they establish solitary lairs in suitable environments. Such transplanted elementals find it difficult to shake off the warlike existence they lived on the Elemental Plane; they guard their new territory viciously and constantly seek to expand their boundaries.

All elementals speak Kalimag and, whether summoned to Azeroth or there of their own free will, wear a set of magic bracers. These bracers form automatically when the elemental leaves the Elemental Plane. They tie the elemental to Azeroth and allow it to exist outside of the Elemental Plane. If the magic of the bracer's is disrupted, usually by prolonged physical or magical attack, the elemental loses much of its power and may inadvertently return to the Elemental Plane.[15]

Elemental Conglomerate

Elemental Conglomerates are elementals that share two or more aspects of the basic elemental types.

Conglomerate Variant
  • Dual elementals
  • Triumvirate elementals
  • Complete elemental


  • It used to be that elemental creatures in WoW were generally immune to all spells from their own element. However, this was mostly removed, though it still appears in a few old raids.
  • As hinted by Earthmender Norsala,[16] elementals native to the Elemental Planes can only truly die when they're on their home plane. If they are killed in the physical world or a different part of the Elemental Plane (not their own plane),[17] they are simply banished back to their corresponding plane.
  • Elementals are capable of feeling pain.[18]
  • All elementals on Draenor are called furies and seek to balance the world.[19]

See also


An elemental is a mythological being that first appeared in the alchemical works of Paracelsus.[1]