Stonewatch is the common name of the military stronghold in central Redridge Mountains. This human fortress serves as a defensive base against the orcish raids coming from the nearby Burning Steppes. It includes both the easily defensible Stonewatch Keep and the armored Stonewatch Tower, with the Stonewatch Falls cascading down a cliff face below it.
Originally, Stonewatch used to be controlled by the humans of Lakeshire. One day however, the warlock Morganth made an alliance with the Blackrock orcs led by Gath'Ilzogg, and together they combined their forces to invade Redridge. Fueled by the evil magic of Morganth, the Blackrock orcs attacked Stonewatch Keep in Redridge with horrific savagery. Ultimately, they captured Stonewatch Keep, but shortly after their victory, Morganth turned on his orcish cohorts. He constructed an arcane tower, the Tower of Ilgalar, and used his powers to build a small army of Shadowhide gnolls led by Lieutenant Fangore, to serve his malicious bidding. Both orc and man have fallen victim to the brutes that serve Morganth.
Left to fend for themselves, the orcs of the Blackrock clan maintained control of the keep, which was overseen by the Blackrock warlord Gath'Ilzogg and his trusted lieutenant, Tharil'zun. The council of Lakeshire planned to retake this vital position to prevent any combined orcish and gnoll raids on the villages of Redrige and Elwynn Forest.
After the Cataclysm, both Tharil'zun and Gath'Ilzogg returned as death knights and have continued the Dark Horde's campaign to conquer Redridge under the leadership of Darkblaze. They were holed up in Stonewatch and Colonel Troteman ordered the Bravo Company to carry out their execution. Shortly after their defeat, Bravo Company had to face the black dragon Darkblaze himself.
After the death of Darkblaze, Stonewatch was deserted.
In the RPG
Stonewatch Keep was once an Alliance fortress. It fell in the Second War to the orcs, and in their hands it stays. It is located east of Lakeshire in a strategic position atop a hill. The orcs harry travelers and sometimes muster the courage to raid the outskirts of Lakeshire. They are advance forces for their brethren in Blackrock Spire. Brann Bronzebeard speculates that they may have more nefarious plans for Lakeshire than mere raiding, perhaps urged by their master, the black dragon Nefarion. Most often, however, they just sit in their keep and taunt others to take it back from them. When Brann was passing by the keep, he experienced their more colorful greetings. A clever orc made a suggestion about his beard in Dwarven, and Brann nearly decides to tare the keep down with his bare hands.
Stonewatch is shown falling to the Horde.
Notes and trivia
- As of patch 2.3, all of the mobs here had their elite tags removed in line with Blizzard's evolving philosophy toward group quests. However, patch 4.0.3a made many once again elite as part of the new Redridge Mountains storyline, which involves John J. Keeshan and his comrades assisting the player. As part of the updates to the zone, the black dragon Darkblaze has been written in as the true commander of the orcs.
Stonewatch in the Warcraft film universe.