Mag'har (alternate universe)
- This article is about the alternate universe group. For the main universe group, see Mag'har (faction). For other uses, see Mag'har (disambiguation).
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The Mag'har (or the Mag'har Clans) are the union of the uncorrupted orcs of the alternate Draenor, who refused the dark bargain of Gul'dan and banded together to drive out the Burning Legion. After the defeat of the Legion at Hellfire Citadel, the survivors of the Iron Horde and the Frostwolf clan united into a single clan under the leadership of Warchief Grommash Hellscream.
- 1 History
- 2 Clans
- 3 Population
- 4 Technology
- 5 Members
- 6 Speculation
- 7 Gallery
- 8 References
The Iron Horde
- Main article: Iron Horde#History
With the aid of the renegade bronze dragon Kairozdormu and the Black Prince Wrathion, Garrosh managed to escape from his trial at the Temple of the White Tiger. Using the , Kairozdormu transported himself and the former Warchief to an alternate Draenor — a Draenor where Garrosh was never born — with the hope of constructing a new Horde. After murdering Kairoz with the Vision, Garrosh traveled to the nearby Warsong village to seek the alternate version of his father, Grommash.
Garrosh managed to convince Grommash to rally the orc clans of this alternate world into an Iron Horde, an army free from demonic influences who would ravage Azeroth with the iron star technology Garrosh had brought with him.
When Gul'dan summoned the clans to the Throne of Kil'jaeden to drink the blood of Mannoroth, Grom refused and slew the pit lord. Gul'dan and his Shadow Council agents were shackled beneath the Dark Portal to power the gateway between worlds. The invasion of Azeroth was pushed back by the combined forces of the Alliance and Horde adventurers, and led by the Archmage Khadgar the heroes of Azeroth ventured to Draenor in a suicide mission to stop the Iron Horde.
The Frostwolf clan led by Durotan and Draka, the Laughing Skull clan led by Kaz the Shrieker, and the draenei led by Yrel and the Council of Exarchs also joined forces with the outsiders against the Iron Horde, leading to a series of crushing defeats for the orc army.
Following the deaths of most of the orc warlords, Gul'dan approached Warchief Grommash with his offer once more. Grommash refused, but Kilrogg, Warlord of the Bleeding Hollow, accepted, delivering the Iron Horde into the hands of the Legion. Gul'dan used his fel magic to twist and corrupt the Iron Horde's stronghold of Hellfire Citadel, and within he successfully summoned Archimonde the Defiler.
With Archimonde's death and the Legion's defeat in Draenor, Grommash proclaimed the victory and the freedom of Draenor to the gathered soldiers. Grommash, Yrel, and Durotan turning their attention to rebuilding their world. The orcs and draenei worked together to drive the Burning Legion from Draenor, and they lived together in peace for years.
Tyranny of the Light
But without demons to fight, the draenei became fixated upon the Light. The naaru then compelled them to spread their influence among the orcs. A few were converted willingly, while others had the Light forced upon them. The Lightbound accuse the Mag'har of killing the planet, while the Mag'har, in turn, accuse the Lightbound of causing it.
After arriving on Azeroth, the Mag'har pledged their loyalty to the Horde under the command of Warchief Sylvanas Windrunner. They subsequently claimed the Hall of the Brave within the Valley of Honor as their new impromptu home. Throughout the Fourth War, several Mag'har clan members participated in the War Campaign, the Battle for Darkshore, and the Faction Assault on Stormsong Valley.
When the Horde split between the revolutionaries of Varok Saurfang and the loyalists of Sylvanas Windrunner, the Mag'har sided with the Warchief. During the conflict, Saurfang challenged Sylvanas to a Mak'gora, which ended in his death and Sylvanas' abandonment of the Horde. In light of Sylvanas's betrayal, the Mag'har bent the knee to Saurfang's revolutionaries, and were given amnesty.
The Blackrocks are a disciplined, organized, and militaristic clan who boast expert smiths and metalworkers. Well armored, they utilize brute strength and weaponry to destroy their foes. The first of the orc clans to master the art of shaping their namesake metal, the Blackrocks prefer to wield blunt weaponry in battle to honor their ancestors. On Draenor, the clan studied the earth around them, developing their knowledge of metallurgy and smithing. Once they learned the secrets of the unique blackrock ore scattered throughout Gorgrond, the orcs were able to create astonishing tools and weapons.
The clan is named after the hidden chamber in which the chieftains sacrificed an eye to receive a vision of their death. They are a fanatical and crude clan who fight with a berserker fury and gain the boon of prophecy from their elders, who sacrifice an eye to see into the future, founding truth in the surety of their deaths. They imbue themselves with berserk fury, slather their weapons in hallucinogenic venom, and stalk prey from the treetops, branding their victims' final moments with visions of pure horror. As they were an insular clan living in one of the most hostile parts of Draenor, they had little contact with the draenei. Generations of surviving in a jungle beset by the remnants of the Evergrowth instilled a savage instinct into the orcs' warfare. The clan was infamous for their use of blood magic, described by Shadow Hunter Denjai as "like voodoo but it hurt more". The orcs carved blood sigils into their own flesh with curved ceremonial blades, created potions from the blood of their strongest warriors and used savage blood magic to transform their warriors into hulking berserkers.
The clan was primarily known for their deadly blademasters. These skilled swordsmen could focus their warrior energies to become living cyclones of rage, spinning their blades faster than the naked eye could see, or channel their potent powers in one focused strike to cause even greater damage. One of the blademasters' more mystical abilities was to create duplicate phantom images of themselves to confuse their enemies, and they were so adept and agile that they could move so quickly they appeared to be invisible to the naked eye. Though they were masters of stealth and guile, the blademasters valued personal honor above all else. Once they had passed their final tests in the Masters' Cavern in Hallvalor, blademasters were given the honor of wearing the Burning Blade's banner. The clan was also known for its shaman, who primarily focused on elemental fire magic. These "flameseers" were known to use summoning components consisting of a powdery material mixed with something that sparkled. The Burning Blade forged a unique relationship with Draenor's ancient elementals and were able to work with iron and flame in ways poorly understood by outsiders. Many legendary Burning Blade weapons owed their existence to a , an iron-bound sheaf of writing apparently passed down through generations.
On Draenor, the proud members of the Frostwolf clan were exceptional fighters but nonetheless lived in harmony with the land, believing that they should adapt to the environment rather than seeking to dominate it. The noble ideals of family and community were highly valued. The Frostwolves prided themselves on suppressing their rage and bloodlust, for they knew that those who succumbed to the beast within became their own greatest enemy. The Frostwolf clan derived its symbol and name from its kinship with Frostfire Ridge's native frost wolves, whom the orcs hunted alongside, befriended and even tamed as companions. The clan spent a lot of time in Frostfire Ridge but migrated seasonally to Nagrand.
On Azeroth, notably, members of the clan participate in the Brewfest festivities, selling their Warpath ale.
Maniacal, volatile, and bloodthirsty, the orcs of the Laughing Skull clan were capable of extreme brutality. Other clans believed them to be mad and considered them to be dangerous and unpredictable, much like Gorgrond itself, and the clan had a reputation for being treacherous. Rather than flinching in the face of death, the Laughing Skulls prided themselves on laughing at it instead, and they chortled whenever they collected a humerus bone from a fallen enemy. This violent mindset stemmed from their environment. The Laughing Skulls struggled to maintain their ancestral territory, but the brutality of being constantly assaulted by Gorgrond's warring Breakers and Primals forged them into bloodthirsty savages and forced them to "match savagery with savagery". The Laughing Skulls always burned their dead in order to prevent the bodies from being raised and infested by the botani. Members of the clan wore distinctive skull-like masks. These were more than fancy facewear; with a mask and "some proper incentive", anyone could be made into a Laughing Skull. The Laughing Skulls had long learned a few secrets of the botani that they could use to grow their own plants. There was no such thing as a hungry Laughing Skull for this reason. With a dash of a few secret ingredients, one could feed an army with the food grown from the pollen carried by the botani's wasps and ravagers, if one knew "the secret ways".
The Shadowmoon were known to be the most spiritual of all the orc clans and were relatively peaceful compared to other orcs. Fascinated with the starry sky, the Shadowmoon believed they could glean the future from stellar movements. They were a deeply mystical people, and they developed traditions and rituals centered around astrology and ancestor worship. A key source of the Shadowmoon clan's power came from their understanding of the stars and their omens. For centuries, they recorded the patterns of the stars and their interpretations. They had a history of astrology, having always spoken the language of the stars and the earth. A key source of the clan's power came from their understanding of the stars and their omens. For centuries, they recorded the patterns of the stars and their interpretations. They were profoundly linked to the spiritual world and had many seers, astrologers, and speakers of the dead among their ranks.
Shadowmoon mystics often inscribed secret runes into their flesh using ceremonial bone needles to more clearly speak to their ancestors and the elemental spirits. Consultation with the spirits of previous generations was considered essential to Shadowmoon shaman whenever an important decision was to be made. Talismans and other relics that were important to an ancestor during life provided a more clear spiritual conduit for shaman to speak to them in the afterlife. The clan's shaman frequently journeyed to the Throne of the Elements to commune with the elemental spirits.
Following the symbolic severing of one's hand from the chains binding him in order to earn freedom, as Kargath Bladefist himself desperately demonstrated while he was chained under the Highmaul arena, these former slaves have been drawn together through a macabre joy of pain both self-inflicted and imposed upon others. It is through this pain that they believe they gather strength, and their reputation as relentless and dirty fighters is well-earned. The Shattered Hand were sadistic warriors who maimed their bodies, perhaps in a show of solidarity, or perhaps because they simply enjoyed the pain, which they claimed strengthened them. The clan celebrated victory in battle with self-mutilation. Their most celebrated warriors were covered with scars and piercings, and it became increasingly difficult with age to tell which were inflicted by enemies or by the triumphant orc.
Taking their namesake literally, warriors of the Shattered Hand would ritualistically smash their own left hand before cutting it off as a way to demonstrate their loyalty to the clan. The stump was cauterized and replaced with one of many varieties of crude tools or weaponry. Heavily weighted blades resembling simple butcher's cleavers were used to make a single clean cut at the wrist.
All incarnations of the Shattered Hand appear to be known for using rogue and assassin units. It seems to be common for Shattered Hand assassins to retain both hands.
Thunderlords valued acts of bravery and valor above all others and sought to dominate the land rather than adapting to their environment. They roamed the frozen wastes of Frostfire Ridge in huge packs, often embarking on dangerous adventures to hunt Frostfire's fearsome gronn and magnaron. A single gronn kill could sustain them for weeks, but when a hunt failed, the orcs would suffer great hardship. A brave and cunning people, the Thunderlords' culture was greatly focused on synergy, and they derived strength from their togetherness, though there were still those who strived to become like Brakor and other such ancestral heroes of legend. The Thunderlords relied on their numbers and spent their days training to hunt as a team, but as individuals they were weak. The Frostwolf chieftain Garad claimed that the Thunderlords were willing to lose ten orcs for every gronn they killed and that they considered no sacrifice too great in the pursuit of victory.
The Thunderlords were the greatest big game hunters in all of Draenor. For centuries they used riding beasts and coordinated assaults to slay game and gronn alike. Known for their mastery of beasts, the clan used numbers and tactics to conquer animals of all types, from raising rylaks as air support and wrangling clefthoof for pack animals to shackling and subjugating boars, birds, and even gronn.
The Warsong roamed the prairies of Nagrand as nomads, rarely staying in the same place for more than a few months. The riders of the Warsong were always on the move. In camp, a family's tent was marked with a long pike thrust into the ground, often adorned with the skulls of defeated enemies and sometimes branded with the names of key battles.
Relying on shock and awe to overwhelm their enemies, the Warsong earned their name from their fearsome battle cries and thunderous drum marches. Ripping into every combat crying epic battle-hymns of blood and death, they were the most distinguishable of the Draenor clans. A bullroarer is an arm-length piece of rigid wood affixed to the end of a long rope and spun over the wielder's head to generate a droning noise capable of traveling long distances. The bullroarers used by the Warsong were grooved to emit a high-pitched whistling noise rather than the low hum used by most other clans. Holes carved into Warsong weapons caused them to howl and wail when swung through the air. This is notably the case with Gorehowl, the famous axe of the Hellscream family. It is expected that members of the Warsong wear the bones of his or her first kill, and inscribe them with personal runes. Members of the Warsong long hunted the bloodhoof clefthoof to user their crimson-hued skin for battle standards.
Several decades have passed on Draenor since the war in Draenor has ended. In these times, Yrel and her draenei have fought against the Mag'har orcs. During the Mag'har orc race unlock questline, when Eitrigg asks for troops from Grommash Hellscream, he was about to send some of his troops to help the Horde on Azeroth until Yrel's unprovoked attack. According to Lantresor of the Blade, whole Lightbound army comes to attack on Mag'har. When the Mag'har escape to Azeroth there isn't much forces in-game, this is because of the game mechanics. According to Steve Danuser, a lot of orcs got caught up in that teleport spell and Mag'har have a significant fighting force along with a fair number of "guests" (gronns, gronnlings, ogrons, ogres, garn, goren, botani, and saberon).
The foundation of the Mag'har technology is the iron star: a coal-fired centrifugal engine which can be used to turn wheels, belts, and chains, allowing for the construction of crude vehicles and siege weapons including tanks, cannons, and chariots. They use all of the technology previously used by the Iron Horde.
Alongside these weapons, the Mag'har make use of warbeasts. Tamed by the Thunderlord clan, these beasts range from massive clefthoof, who were bred as both packbeasts and weapons of war, and the mighty gronn, who have been wholly subjugated by the time of their introduction to the Horde. Alongside them, ogres work as servants, adding to the Mag'har's already formidable arsenal of weaponry.
Even after their exodus to Azeroth, the Mag'har are capable of replicating their technology using Azeroth's materials. As a result, Mag'har weaponry has been quickly adopted by the Horde since their introduction, such as on the siege of Norwington Estate, invasions on Tiragarde Sound, as a flagship in Nazmir, and as a full invasion force in Stormsong Valley as a few examples.
The subject of this section did not make it out of the beta stages.
Due to the appearance of Swellthrasher in Drustvar in the Horde War Campaign, the recruitment of the Mag'har Clans into the Horde may have, lorewise, happened before the Horde invaded Kul Tiras. Alternatively, it could mean that some Laughing Skull Orcs returned to Azeroth with the Horde forces after the war in Draenor, as hinted at by the War Drummers and a few other orcs wearing Frostwolf Orcs gear.