Large, sharp melee weapons
Easily recognizable by the banners carried on their backs
- “To take up the weapon of a Blademaster is to invite your own demise.”
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The blademasters are known to have existed long before the corruption of the orcs at the hand of the Burning Legion when the Burning Blade clan was still dwelling in Hallvalor in Nagrand and using elemental fire magic. Judging by the Ancient Blademaster, the way of the blademaster was already an ancient one years before the forming of the Old Horde.
- Main article: Blademaster (Warcraft III)
Though their numbers are few, the seasoned blademasters represent an elite fighting force within the Horde. These skilled swordsmen were once part of the ill-fated Burning Blade clan which consumed itself in the throes of demonic corruption. With their clan scattered and broken, the proud blademasters swore a grim oath to free themselves and their brethren from demonic control once and for all. Under Thrall's command, the blademasters once again joined the Horde and came to serve as the young Warchief's personal honor guard. Though blademasters are masters of stealth and guile, they value personal honor above all else.
Fel blademasters were numerous in the forces of Magtheridon and were the chieftains of each of his bloodthirsty sub-legions. Each of the four great fel orc fortifications on the Hellfire Peninsula, guarding the dark portals, was led by a blademaster. And in the Black Temple of Magtheridon himself, several blademasters led legions of fel orcs in defense. Illidan, Kael'thas, Lady Vashj, and Akama had great battles against the fel orc blademasters both in and outside of the temple.
Garrosh Hellscream employed several blademasters during the campaign in Pandaria, with the Mag'har orc Ishi serving as his champion and with several blademasters stationed at Domination Point in Krasarang. He also recruited so-called Blind Blademasters into his True Horde during the Siege of Orgrimmar.
On the alternate Draenor where the orc clans rallied into the Iron Horde as a result of Garrosh's actions, the Burning Blade, led by a blademaster known as Azuka Bladefury, willingly joined. Following Gul'dan's takeover of the Iron Horde, a blademaster called Jubei'thos became a member of his Hellfire High Council.
Abilities and customs
The blade is not the only important item a blademaster carries. Once he had passed his final tests in the Masters' Caverns, the blademaster was given the honor of wearing the Burning Blade's banner. The banners carried by blademasters are described as cumbersome, and it's hard to believe that they don't affect the blademasters' ability to fight. In Warlords of Draenor, blademasters are shown to be capable of manipulating fire, with many of them using abilities such as "Blazing Coil".
Sticky, smelly, and highly flammable, blazegrease is liberally applied to the swords and axes of the Burning Blade clan before battle. Though some warriors choose to ignite their weapons before battle, most let the inevitable contact of blades and armor spark the blazegrease for unpredictable intimidation.
Warcraft III abilities
- By focusing their warrior energies, blademasters can become living cyclones of fighting rage. Spinning their great blades faster than the naked eye can see, they are capable of simultaneously damaging any enemy troops in their vicinity.
- Critical Strike
- By channeling their potent powers in one focused strike, blademasters can cause even greater damage to their enemies.
- Mirror Image
- One of the blademasters' more mystical abilities is to create duplicate phantom images of themselves. Though the phantom images can move about freely of their own volition, they are not true entities unto themselves.
- Wind Walk
- So adept and agile are the blademasters that they can move so quickly that they appear to be invisible to the naked eye.
- Grommash Hellscream, who, despite being classified as a blademaster in Warcraft III, probably wasn't one lorewise.
Note: Many of these are random hero names in Warcraft III.
|Akinos Steelclaw||Diplomat to the Alliance||Horde||Alive||Unknown|
|Moogul the Sly||Sage||Horde||Alive||Unknown|
- Blademaster Trainee <Burning Blade Clan>
- Blind Blademaster
- Burning Blademaster
- Grom'kar Blademaster
- Hallvalor Blademaster
- Krell the Serene <Blademaster of the Blackfang>, a Blackfang saberon who besides having the title of blademaster also uses blademaster-like abilities.
- Kor'thik Elite Blademasters, mantid mobs in Heart of Fear.
- Blademaster Telaamon, a Lightforged draenei who fights for the Army of the Light.
- Blademaster Okani, an ankoan and leader of the Waveblade clan.
In the RPG
Blademasters lead their people into melee combat, unhesitatingly seeking the most vulnerable enemy champions — magi, druids and the like. Blademasters willingly go toe-to-toe with other melee experts as well, drawing from ages of tradition to fuel their combat prowess. Their sashimono banners allow their troops to identify them on the battlefield and move to where the action is thickest. Many act as bodyguards for other Horde champions. Banner of the Black Wolf is in the same style as those worn by orcish blademasters.
Notes and trivia
- Eliminating blademaster's mirror images weakens the blademaster.
- Maki Waterblade is a saurok samurai, wearing items similar as a blademaster.
- Players can don the banner and weaponry of masters of the blade by using .
- Before blademasters were even a concept, Samwise Didier drew a katana-wielding orc character in Dungeons & Dragons which would later inspire Samuro.
- The orc Na'Shra was originally intended to be a blademaster.
- Blademasters draw clear inspiration from Japanese and Asian culture, particularly the samurai. Many blademasters have very Japanese-sounding names, some wield katana-like swords, many wear oversized mala beads around their necks (similar to the larger version of the prayer beads worn by Shaolin monks), and their distinctive banners are seemingly inspired by sashimono, small banners carried on the backs of soldiers in feudal Japan (the banners are even outright called "sashimono" in the non-canon RPG). Japanese influence can also be seen in the fact that blademasters, and the Burning Blade clan in general, are said to value honor above all else.
- From their positions in Magtheridon's army, it seems that fel orcs are led by blademasters. As the fel orcs live only for carnage and slaughter, it is plausible that they would follow those who are most capable of carrying it out.
- Captain Galvangar and Takata Steelblade may be blademasters.
- Given that blademasters wear neck-beads similar to some shaman and monks, and some possess elemental (Blazing Coil, Molten Weapon) or supernatural (Wind Walk, Mirror Image) abilities, it is possible that they also utilize their spirit to empower themselves or draw from the elemental spirits either by command or request.
Early art of the character that would serve as the basis for Samuro.
Samuro, the Blademaster from Heroes of the Storm.
Warcraft III: Reforged model.
- Fan art
- ^ Art of World of Warcraft, pg. 9
- ^ a b c d e Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos manual, pg. 84
- ^ Gates of the Abyss (WC3 BloodElf)
- ^ Lord of Outland (WC3 BloodElf)
- ^ Blademaster's Banner
- ^ Micky Neilson on Twitter
- ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 104
- ^ a b Horde Player's Guide, pg. 194
- ^ Magic & Mayhem, pg. 138
- ^ Shadows & Light, pg. 40
- ^ Shadows & Light, pg. 53
- ^ Building the Nexus: Samuro (2016-10-20). Retrieved on 2016-10-20.