|Level: 58 - 80
Battle Pet Level: 17 - 18
The Hellfire Peninsula, once known as Tanaan Jungle, is one of the surviving parts of Draenor. It is a pivotal area of Outland that has been the location of many of the most brutal battles in Warcraft history. This is where the other side of the Dark Portal is located. Two of its past cities include Hellfire Citadel and Zeth'kur.
As its name implies, the Hellfire Peninsula is a grim place. In regards to topography, well, there isn't much. Aesthetically, the ground looks like it does in Durotar: reddish hue, barren, almost uninhabitable and hard-packed. There is one key exception, though — when you travel on the ground, you note bones cracking and shattering beneath your feet. These would be the remains of the countless draenei that the blood-crazed orcs systematically slaughtered prior to bringing their war to Azeroth.
The Hellfire Peninsula — indeed, most of areas that The Burning Crusade introduced — is much larger than what classic WoW players are used to. Part of the motive for this is to justify the relative speeds at which flying mounts travel.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Notable characters
- 4 World PvP - Hellfire Fortifications
- 5 Quests
- 6 Resources
- 7 Wild Creatures
- 8 The Burning Crusade Release Issue
- 9 Notes & trivia
- 10 Gallery
- 11 Patch changes
- 12 References
- 13 External links
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Worldofwarcraft.com says the following about the Hellfire Peninsula:
- Once a lush and verdant land, the Hellfire Peninsula is now a dry, barren wasteland rendered lifeless by the dark practices of orc warlocks. It is here that the Dark Portal stands, cementing the peninsula's place in history as the site of many pitched battles between the Alliance and Horde. The nefarious Burning Legion has gathered here also, using the area as a staging ground for its apocalyptic crusade.
Before the First War
The Hellfire Peninsula was originally a place called Tanaan Jungle on the world of Draenor, surrounded by the Devouring Sea to the north, east and south. It was here the orcs - after being crazed by the Blood Curse which transformed them into fel orcs - built Hellfire Citadel as the fortress of Blackhand, the first Warchief of the (old) Horde. The structure was originally just referred to as "the Citadel". After the orcs' abandoned their shamanistic ways and the elemental spirits, the whole area became known as "Hellfire Peninsula" and the citadel got its current name. While the Temple of Karabor (later known as the Black Temple) served as the meeting place for Gul'dan's Shadow Council, Hellfire Citadel acted as the staging ground for the Horde's military force. Both the final attack against the draenei in Shattrath and the march along the Path of Glory, where the orcs committed genocide on the draenei, was planned here. At the end of the Path of Glory, the Stair of Destiny and Dark Portal was constructed. The portal was activated by the combined effort of the Shadow Council in Draenor and by Medivh, a powerful human wizard possessed by Sargeras, in Azeroth. The orcs rushed through and unleashed the Horde upon Azeroth, starting the First War in which the orcs conquered much of the Eastern Kingdoms. The orcs that remained in Draenor became known as the Horde of Draenor, led by Ner'zhul.
Aftermath of the Second War
The Alliance of Lordaeron eventually managed to overpower the orcs during the Second War and pull them back to the Dark Portal. Khadgar attempted to destroy it, but discovered that even though he could shatter the structure, the rift connecting the two worlds still persisted. Blasting the structure still shattered many of the orcs' morale, and several were captured and put into internment camps under the Alliance Internment Act. This marked the end of the Second War. To watch over the rift, Nethergarde Keep was constructed. Kilrogg Deadeye, one of the orcs eluding capture, played the important role. Kilrogg escaped back through the Dark Portal which had been reopened by Teron Gorefiend.Kilrogg met with Ner'zhul back on Draenor, telling him of Azeroth. Ner'zhul was intrigued by the tales and decided to open multiple portals across Draenor to new worlds for the orcs to conquer. To do so, he required several magical objects found in Azeroth, and sent Teron Gorefiend, Grom Hellscream, Kargath Bladefist and Kilrogg Deadeye to fetch them, two years after the portal had been closed (it was reopened by Teron Gorefiend) and one year after Nethergarde's completion. The Alliance believed the orcs were amassing a new attack against Azeroth, and decided to follow the orcs when they returned through the portal back to Draenor. They formed the Alliance Expedition whose goals were to retrieve some of the magical objects and defeat the orcs in their own home, crushing the orcs once and for all. The expedition's leaders, one of them being Khadgar, called themselves the Sons of Lothar in honor for Anduin Lothar who had been slain by Orgrim Doomhammer at the end of the Second War. It also seems they rebuilt the structure around the rift, given how it was restored when they passed through the portal. Notice that the Horde Player's Guide doesn't mention anything about neither the artifacts nor the expedition, only that the Alliance decided to follow Kilrogg and his orcs when they fled back through the other portal.
In Hellfire Peninsula, the Alliance Expedition clashed together with the combined forces of the Horde of Draenor and the orcs that had escaped back to Draenor. The expedition founded the Expedition Armory and later Honor Hold which was under siege for several months before successfully attacking Hellfire Citadel. They also attacked the shipyard of Zeth'kur, later constructing their own warships to cross the Devouring Sea. The orcish clans were eventually defeated after several battles across Draenor and were nearly wiped out. This did however not stop Ner'zhul from carrying out his plan, tearing Draenor apart when he activated his multiple portals. According to Kael'thas Sunstrider, it seems Ner'zhul (also) opened the gates simply to escape the expedition. This sundering "replaced" the Devouring Sea with the Twisting Nether. The expedition suspected that the sundering would spread through the Dark Portal and crush Azeroth as well, and decided to shut down the portal from the Draenor-side to prevent it - even if it meant their own deaths. Khadgar managed to use the Skull of Gul'dan and Book of Medivh to close it while his soldiers fended off the last orcs, and thus Outland and Azeroth was severed. In the Horde Player's Guide, it is stated that what remained of the orcs' homeworld was a blasted continent of floating red rocks in the Twisting Nether, with only a handful of survivors, most of whom were horribly wounded. The remaining orcs were rallied by a pit lord named Magtheridon who settled down at the Black Temple. Ner'zhul himself was caught by Kil'jaeden who transformed him into the Lich King and placed him in Icecrown. There, he would create the dreaded menace later known as the Scourge. The fate of the expedition trapped in Draenor, now known as Outland, remained a mystery for 20 years.
After the Third War
When Illidan Stormrage teleported to Outland, he discovered that Magtheridon was using the multiple portals that Ner'zhul opened to bring in demons from the Twisting Nether. Illidan and his lieutenants Kael'thas Sunstrider and Lady Vashj closed them down and defeated Magtheridon, placing the fel orcs under Illidan's command instead. Kargath Bladefist became one of the orcs following him, now being the final boss in the Shattered Halls. Magtheridon was enslaved within the Hellfire Citadel and acts now as a new source of demon blood for Illidan's orcs to drink, as the previous pit lord supplying this was killed at the end of the Third War. The orcs are performing several experiments on the blood, probably attempting to make themselves stronger. Magtheridon himself can be freed and fought as a raid boss. Apparently, it was in Hellfire Peninsula that Illidan also met Akama. There is however some discrepancy on exactly where Illidan's actions were played out - not only does one mission take place over most of Outland, the Black Citadel / Temple has been retconned to be in Shadowmoon Valley. For details, see Black Citadel and Temple.
When Kazzak the Supreme used some magical artifact to reopen the Dark Portal, the inhabitants of Azeroth discovered (to some degree) what had happened with the Alliance Expedition. Honor Hold is still standing, though most of its soldiers are getting old. Both Stormwind City and Nethergarde Keep has brought them supplies and imbued their militia. The Expedition Armory is however destroyed, now haunted by the ghosts of the Alliance soldiers rised by Ner'zhul's death knights. Thus, Honor Hold has become one of the two Alliance bases in Hellfire Peninsula. The other is some old draenei ruins to the northwest, inhabited by draenei from the Exodar. The Sons of Lothar have had various fates - Khadgar traveled to Shattrath where he became good friends with A'dal, Kurdran Wildhammer became the leader of the Wildhammer Stronghold in Shadowmoon Valley (he later returned to Azeroth), and Danath Trollbane is still the leader of Honor Hold. Alleria Windrunner and Turalyon have disappeared, but their son Arator can also be found at Honor Hold.
The (new) Horde have recently established their own base, Thrallmar, to the north. Falcon Watch is another base built and inhabited by blood elves allied with the Horde. Interestingly, it is discovered that Hellfire Peninsula is still inhabited by the Mag'har, orcs that were never tainted by demonic blood. While their village is hidden in some mountains to the north, it's still a wonder how they've managed to elude the Burning Legion for so long. Kilrogg Deadeye's son, Jorin Deadeye, is one of them. He is the current leader of the Bleeding Hollow Clan. There is also a small group of arakkoa living in a crag to the west.
The area is still teeming with both demons serving the Burning Legion and fel orcs serving Illidan (who became an enemy of the Burning Legion after failing to destroy the Frozen Throne - twice). A never-ceasing stream of demons is walking along the Path of Glory towards the Dark Portal, trying to invade Azeroth through it. Most of them are however killed by forces from both the Horde and the Alliance. Notably, Hellfire Peninsula is the most demon-influnced zone in Outland next after Shadowmoon Valley. Kazzak himself is an outdoor raid boss at the Throne of Kil'jaeden to the north.
It is also discovered that Kael'thas Sunstrider and his blood elves (presumably after he broke away from Illidan and Vashj) have been conducting some kind of experiment at Fallen Sky Ridge, planting a massive red crystal in the ground there. The project is led by Pathaleon the Calculator and is apparently intended to somehow create and corrupt colossi. The player helps the Cenarion Expedition by foiling the experiment. This, along with the Burning Legion and Illidan's fel orcs, are the three major forces the player will fight against in World of Warcraft's Hellfire Peninsula.
Map and subregions (World of Warcraft)
The Hellfire Peninsula is a barren wasteland looking like a cross between the Blasted Lands and Tanaris. It remains mostly intact even after Draenor's sundering, although parts of it can be seen floating above and outside in the form of smallish islands. The eastern part of the peninsula is cut in two parts by the Path of Glory, itself being surrounded by the ruined human cannons and orcish blade throwers of the Second War.
Accessing the Dark Portal to the Hellfire Peninsula is the most common way to reach Outland for the first time; thus, it is typically the first zone encountered in the 60+ content of The Burning Crusade.
Map and subregions (Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne)
In WarCraft III: The Frozen Throne, some of the missions are played out in Outland. They are part of the human (blood elf) campaign Curse of the Blood Elves which tells Illidan Stormrage's conquest of the Black Temple, here referred to as the Black Citadel. On the Outland map seen in WC3 (below), Hellfire Peninsula occupies a large portion to the south. As such, this map is often regarded as being a map of this zone in WC3. There are however several geographical errors related to this map when compared with other maps:
- As stated, Hellfire's Black Citadel was later confirmed to the same as the Black Temple. This means that the upper body of the map is actually Shadowmoon Valley.
- The dimensional gateways' locations in World of Warcraft shows that the WC3 mission Gates of the Abyss actually takes place all over Outland, despite how the loading screen still shows this map. At the same time, on the map they're shown to be located around the Black Citadel.
- In the TBC "Behind the Scenes" DVD, one of the designers still states that players had only visited Hellfire Peninsula during Warcraft III.
- Moreover, the Hellfire Peninsula-part doesn't resemble Hellfire Peninsula in World of Warcraft at all. This is somewhat odd as the map in World of Warcraft still resembles the map in Warcraft II, which naturally was launched before WC3.
As such, although the areas seen on the WC3 Outland map here on Wowpedia are treated as being parts of Hellfire Peninsula, this is purely speculation.
|Devil's Cauldron • Draenei Village • Mountains of Flame • Shadowmoon Ruins|
Map and subregions (Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal)
|Shadowed Seas • Vanguard • Zeth'kur|
|Dungeon Name||Level Range||Group Size|
|Zone Name||Faction||Level Range||Direction||Access|
|Zangarmarsh||60-80||West||By foot, or by flight path|
|Terokkar Forest||62-80||Southwest||By foot, or by flight path|
- Wizard's Sanctum, Mage Quarter, Stormwind City
- The Mystic Ward, Ironforge
- Temple of the Moon, Darnassus
- The Vault of Lights, The Exodar
- Valley of Spirits, Orgrimmar
- Spirit Rise near Pools of Vision, Thunder Bluff
- Magic Quarter, The Undercity
- Sunfury Spire, Silvermoon City
At the Stair of Destiny:
- Main article: Hellfire Peninsula NPCs
World PvP - Hellfire Fortifications
Three PvP objectives, small ruined forts of Broken Hill, The Overlook and The Stadium, stand in the center of the region just west of Hellfire Citadel. As with other World PvP games each of these points may be captured by PvP flagged characters holding position within the objective. In order to flag a fort, you need to be non-stealthed, and the fort in question needs to be currently flagged by opposing faction, or unflagged (shown as gray on zone map).
The faction with the most flagged characters within the objectives vicinity will slowly gain ownership of the point. When all three points are controlled by a faction they will gain a zone-wide bonus of +5% Damage, applicable even within the Hellfire Citadel instances. This bonus is called Hellfire Superiority.
In addition, any opposing players killed while fighting for the objectives will reward the player and the player's party with a PvP token,for the Alliance and for the Horde. Grouping is encouraged as only the party that performs the killing blow will receive a token.
The repeatable quest, Hellfire Fortifications, awards 150 reputation points for either Honor Hold or Thrallmar, and 3 tokens. The quest requires the player to capture each point once, is repeatable and cannot be completed in a raid. The quest can only be completed once per day.
The quest is available at the following NPCs:
- Dune worms
- Carrion Birds
- Fel orcs
- Fel Reavers
- Mag'har orcs
- Pit Lords
- Rock Flayers
The Burning Crusade Release Issue
When The Burning Crusade Expansion was released, this zone became severely overloaded as almost the entire playerbase, on every server, came here to start playing the expansion. As a result there were a few server issues, and ingame huge groups of players of both factions were trying to do the same quests in the same place for the same mobs at the same time. As a few days passed and people finally moved on to other zones, the problem died down. It is because of this that the next two expansions offered two starting zones - Borean Tundra and Howling Fjord in Wrath, and Hyjal and Vashj'ir in Cataclysm. A single-zone starting area was not done again until Mists of Panderia, with both factions starting on opposite ends of the Jade Forest, and in Warlords the factions start in completely different zones.
Notes & trivia
- The never-ending fight between the combined Alliance/Horde forces and the never-ending supply of Burning Legion minions at the Stair of Destiny previously made a great place to level up weapon skills (before the stat was removed). The mobs have fair health values, and since there's a constant distraction of NPCs to tank them, it was fairly easy to sit there taking pot shots with your weapon to build up your skill. Buying the white quality weapons from the various vendors around Dalaran could help as well, as these weapons are very fast and weapon skill was gained based on using the weapon rather than how hard you hit.
- Interestingly, the Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual originally implied that the Dark Portal was making the land more sick and swamp-like instead of making it burnt and dead.
- Hellfire Peninsula seems to act as a "representative" for both Outland and World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade, being the location which most artwork presenting them are set in. The reason may be that it is the Outland-zone seen in both Warcraft II and Warcraft III. Another reason may be that it holds the Dark Portal which is connected to much of the lore in the Warcraft-universe.
- In the Horde Player's Guide, it is stated that "the Horde's history begins in hellfire". While it could mean Hellfire Peninsula, it probably simply refers to the demonic corruption (as "hellfire" is not written with a capital 'H').
- The beginning of the Pink Floyd song Shine On You Crazy Diamond is the background music in many areas of the Hellfire Peninsula (the NPC Floyd Pinkus is also a reference to this band).
- Shine On You Crazy Diamond - full version first part
- Hellfire Peninsula - Music of WoW: The Burning Crusade (the Crazy Diamond-part can be heard from 06.10 to 08.15)
Hellfire Peninsula during the Invasion of Draenor.
Hellfire Peninsula in The Frozen Throne.
Original and unused Hellfire Peninsula map in vanilla World of Warcraft.
- Patch 7.3.5 (2018-01-16): Level scaling implemented, previous zone level: 58 - 63.
- ^ Dave Kosak on Twitter
- ^ Previews World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade at PC.GameSpy.com
- ^ Tides of Darkness
- ^ Beyond the Dark Portal
- ^ Dark Portal
- ^ Rend_Blackhand#Background
- ^ Khadgar#The_Alliance_Expedition
- ^ Youtube → Warcraft 2 All Human Cinematics (2.08-2.36)
- ^ Beyond the Dark Portal
- ^ Horde of Draenor
- ^ The Dusts of Outland
- ^ The Dusts of Outland
- ^ Horde Player's Guide, page 173
- ^ Gates of the Abyss
- ^ Lord of Outland
- ^ Gates of the Abyss
- ^ Black Citadel and Temple
- ^ "Curse of the Blood Elves: The Search for Illidan", Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. Blizzard Entertainment.
- ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, Chronicles of the War in Azeroth, 583
- ^ Warcraft: Orcs & Humans manual, The Destiny of the Orcish Hordes
- ^ Horde Player's Guide, page 166