|Source information needed!
- This article is about trolls in general. For the jungle troll playable race, see Troll (playable). For the Zandalari troll playable race, see Zandalari troll (playable). For the language previously known as troll, see Zandali. For the troll subspecies see Zandalari troll, Jungle troll, Forest troll, Ice troll, Sand troll and Dark troll.
Tribes & Empires
- “Oh my - as I suspected. Your ancestry dates back to the dawn of the world. Great were the ancient empires of the trolls. I see a spark in your eyes, a powerful will - you wish to be great again, yes?”
- — 
Trolls (collectively referred to as trollkind) are a diverse sapient race that can be found in every part of Azeroth. They are one of the earliest non-Titanforged races of Azeroth. There are several subspecies of troll, with the Zandalari being the progenitor species from whence all other trolls came.
Jungle trolls average approximately 8'4" for males and 7'1" for females according to their models. Trolls and their various subspecies are some of the tallest mortal races on Azeroth. They have three fingers per hand and two toes per foot, with sometimes a third located on their heel (as seen on various models). Both males and females have a variety of tusk styles ranging from small to large, they also feature a wide range of wild hair styles. Trolls are of a very athletic and acrobatic build, with male jungle trolls averaging around three hundred pounds in weight, and females about two hundred fifteen. The three largest subspecies of troll are the dark trolls, ice trolls and the Zandalari, whom on average are much larger than their kindred. There is another variant of troll who far exceed the normal size range, these trolls are called dire trolls.
Many trolls have no loyalty except amongst their own tribes, with the exception of the Darkspear tribe, Shatterspear tribe, and Revantusk tribe, the former two being part of the Horde, while the latter being allies of them. The trolls of the Shatterspear tribe merged with the Darkspear tribe as of Cataclysm. Trolls of the Darkspear tribe and Zandalar tribe are the playable trolls in World of Warcraft.
- 1 Characteristics
- 2 History
- 3 Culture
- 4 Troll subspecies
- 5 Playable race
- 6 Geneology
- 7 Notable
- 8 Lore and legends
- 9 Troll artifacts
- 10 Notes & trivia
- 11 Gallery
- 12 See also
- 13 References
Trolls are often tall, lanky, and muscular. They have both elven and orc-like characteristics with their fierce fangs and long ears. Their long arms, strong legs and quick reflexes make them adept hunters. Trolls have only two fingers and a thumb on their hands, and they have only two toes on each foot, some trolls have a toe-like protrusion from their heel as well. Most trolls do not wear standard shoes or boots as they are simply more comfortable barefoot, however some do. And adorning them for battle or war is done by some. Male trolls frequently squat in place, while the females do not.
Forest trolls' bodies can support plant life to a limited extent due to a mutation that took place many millennia ago. A thin layer of moss may grow on their skin shortly after they are born, giving them their characteristic greenish color. Some of them however grow fur too.
Jungle trolls' bodies are covered in short, soft fur which cause them to appear purple or gray.
Although enough physical damage will kill them, trolls can regenerate grievous physical injuries at an accelerated rate, giving them a large advantage in battle. All trolls are naturally able to regenerate lost limbs and organs. There are however tales in troll culture about those blessed by the loa that can regenerate nearly the entirety of their bodies. The tale of speaks of how he regrew almost his entire body after standing in a pool of shadowflame. But just as the loa can bless, they can also curse; troll children are taught about those cursed by the loa, unable to heal even flesh wounds, to instill the proper respect for their patron spirits. There is a type of poison that can almost completely stop a troll's regenerative abilities for upwards of a few weeks. Elemental fires can also temporarily prevent trolls from regenerating their wounds.
Trolls are so well known for their regenerative abilities that alchemical mixtures, which induce regeneration in other races, are referred to as "troll's blood potions," despite not actually containing any troll blood. The blood of Sandfury trolls is thick enough to hold in your hand. Militant tribes of trolls are efficient killers and have a strong lust for blood. Some may still cling to their heritage of cannibalism and voodoo.
in Kun-Lai stated that the human could cope with the cold better than he could. However, he managed to get used to it very rapidly. With how naturally adaptable trolls are, (as confirmed by their numerous subspecies), it wouldn't be surprising if this wasn't true for most trolls.
Trolls have a characteristic way of speaking. Words like "yo" (a greeting) and "mon" (man) are common expressions. They speak with varying accents that resemble that of Jamaicans and Cubans. Cuban-sounding accents are more common among forest trolls.
At the heart of ancient Kalimdor lay the Well of Eternity, an enormous lake filled with powerful energies. The Well accelerated the cycles of growth and rebirth on the primordial continent, and soon sentient life forms arose from the wilds. The trolls were among the first and most prolific. It was previously incorrectly stated that the trolls predated the arrival of the Titans.
Trolls are one of the oldest, if not the oldest, non-Old God created or titan-forged species on Azeroth. Troll legends mention the Titans, calling them "the Travelers", and their battle with the Old Gods. In the old days of trolls, before even the Zandalari empire, the shadow hunters were the leaders of the small tribes. Over time, as trolls gathered in great cities, their influence was lessened. Despite this, the position is still a highly respected one.
The early trolls developed an array of superstitious customs. Some practiced cannibalism and warfare, others mystic practices and meditation, and others honed their ties to the dark and powerful form of magic known as voodoo. What all trolls shared was a common religion centered around Kalimdor's Wild Gods, which the trolls worshipped as deities under the name "loa". The troll tribes gathered near the sacred mountain range of Zandalar in southern Kalimdor, where many of the loa dwelt. The lesser tribes built small encampments on Zandalar's slopes, but the most powerful tribe, the Zandalari, claimed the highest peaks and plateaus. There, they built a cluster of shrines that would later come to grow into the temple city of Zuldazar.
About 16,000 years ago (long before the night elves summoned the wrath of the Burning Legion), trolls lorded over much of Kalimdor, which was then a single continent. The Zandalari were the earliest known trolls - the first tribe from which all tribes originated. The Zandalari were allied with the mogu and their empire, but both the mogu and Zandalari held contempt for one another. The Zandalari thought themselves above the mogu for two reasons: the presence of the loa, and that the Zandalari did not use slaves as the mogu did. The mutual contempt between the two would grow to polite indifference. They trusted the other not to attack, because they were confident they would defeat the other. While Zandalari and mogu stood back to back, they did not watch the other and did not see the other falter.
The Zandalari empire was heavily dependent on a caste system, and as time went on those castes evolved into their own people. The lower castes eventually left the Zandalari Empire, and the Zandalar trolls were content to see them go, seeing them as children who would see the folly of youthful rebellion and come back begging for Zandalari approval.
However, the trolls would not return. Over time two distinct troll empires emerged: the Amani Empire of the middle forestlands and the Gurubashi Empire of the Southeastern jungles. Smaller tribes lived far North in the region now called Northrend. These tribes founded a small nation known as Zul'Drak, but they never achieved the size or prosperity of the southern empires.
The Gurubashi and Amani empires held some animosity for one another, but they rarely warred. At the time, their greatest common enemy was a third empire — the civilization of Azj'Aqir. The aqir were intelligent insectoids who ruled the lands of the far West. These insectoids were clever, greatly expansionary, and extremely hostile. The aqir aimed to eradicate all non-insect life from the fields of Kalimdor.
The trolls fought the aqir for many thousands of years but never succeeded in winning a true victory over them. Eventually, due to the trolls' persistence, the aqiri kingdom split into thirds as its citizens fled to separate colonies in the far Northern and Southern regions of the continent. Three aqiri kingdoms then emerged: Azjol-Nerub in the Northern wastes, Ahn'Qiraj in the Southern desert, and the Mantid Empire near the domain of mogu. Though the trolls suspected that there were other aqiri colonies beneath Kalimdor, their existence was never verified.
With the insectoids driven into exile, the twin troll empires returned to normalcy. Despite their great victories, neither civilization expanded much further than their original boundaries. However, ancient texts speak of a small faction of dark trolls who broke off from the Amani Empire and founded their own colony in the heart of the dark continent. There, the pioneers discovered the cosmic Well of Eternity, which allegedly transformed them into beings of immense power. Some legends suggested that these troll adventurers became the first night elves, and this was later confirmed by , , and the when asked by the legendary explorer, .
After their discovery of the Well of Eternity, the descendants of these dark trolls, now calling themselves "Kaldorei" in their new language, came to power. Despite the trolls' attempts to keep them from expanding their territories, the night elves built a strong empire that expanded rapidly across primordial Kalimdor. Wielding magics never before seen by the their ancestors' kin, who remained largely superstitious, the night elves had little trouble demolishing the trolls' twin empires, an act the aqir could not accomplish.
The night elves systematically dismantled the trolls' defenses and supply chains. The trolls, unable to counter the elves' destructive magics, buckled under the onslaught. The actions of the night elves incurred the trolls' long-lasting hatred and disdain. The Gurubashi and Amani Empires fragmented within only a few short years.
Eventually, the night elves' reckless overuse of magic lured the demonic Burning Legion to the world. The demons destroyed much of the night elves' civilization. Though there are no records to indicate that the Legion attacked either troll civilization, it is likely that battles took place across the breadth of the continent.
At the end of this conflict, known as the War of the Ancients, the Well of Eternity imploded. The resulting shockwave shattered the greater landmass of Kalimdor. The center of the continent was blasted beneath the sea, leaving a group of multiple, broken, continents. Thus, great chunks of both the Amani and Gurubashi Empires were lost to the waves, but plenty of their land still exists in the present day lands of Quel'Thalas and Stranglethorn (respectively). The Azj'Aqir kingdoms of Azjol-Nerub, Ahn'Qiraj and the Mantid Empire have also survived in present day Northrend and Tanaris respectively.
Both troll civilizations recoiled from the vast destruction of the world they had known. The trolls later rebuilt their ravaged cities and set about to reclaim some of their former power.
The Troll Wars
- Main article: The Troll Wars
One of the oldest wars in Azeroth was between the forest trolls of Zul'Aman and the high elves. High elves founded their kingdom of Quel'Thalas over ground sacred to the trolls, beneath which lay an ancient troll city. This sparked conflict between the high elves and trolls, but the elves' magic frightened away the superstitious and angry troll warbands. 4,000 years passed while the trolls plotted and schemed as their numbers grew. Finally, a mighty troll army charged out from the shadowy forests and once again laid siege to the shining spires of Quel'Thalas.
The elves were hopelessly outnumbered. Believing defeat to be imminent, the high elves in desperation sought the aid of the humans of Arathor, teaching them the ways of magic in exchange for their assistance. Together the high elves and humans stood against the troll armies at the foot of the Alterac Mountains, and used fire magic to set the trolls ablaze and prevent them from regenerating their wounds. The troll armies broke and attempted to flee, but were chased by enemy forces and eventually killed. The forest trolls would never fully recover from their defeat, and history would never see them rise as one nation again.
Wrath of the Soulflayer
The long centuries following the Great Sundering of the world were difficult ones for the troll race. Famine and death were commonplace within the broken kingdoms. The Gurubashi trolls, driven to desperate ends, sought aid from ancient, mystical forces. Though both of the troll kingdoms shared a central belief in a great pantheon of primitive gods, the Gurubashi fell under the sway of a darker one.
1,500 years before the opening of the Dark Portal, (not to be confused with from War of the Ancients), a darker spirit, heard the trolls' calls of distress and decided to aid them. Hakkar gave his secrets of blood to the Gurubashi and helped them extend their civilization across most of Stranglethorn Vale and certain islands of the South Seas. Though he brought them great power, Hakkar demanded souls be sacrificed to him daily. He wanted to gain access to the physical world so that he could terrorize and devour mortal creatures. In time the Zandalari helped the Gurubashi realize what kind of creature they had courted with, and both forces turned against him. The strongest tribes rose up against Hakkar and his loyal priests, the Atal'ai.
The devastating war that ensued between Hakkar's followers and the rest of the Gurubashi tribes was not well-recorded and has mostly been passed on through oral tradition. The budding empire was shattered by the magic unleashed between the angry god and his rebel children. Just as the war began turning away from the trolls' favor, they succeeded in destroying Hakkar's avatar and banishing him from the mortal world.
The Atal'ai priests were eventually driven from the capital of Zul'Gurub and forced to survive in the uncharted swamplands of the North. Within the dense ferns they built a great temple, Atal'Hakkar, in honor of their fallen god, where they continued to worship and serve him.
The rest of the Gurubashi tribes separated after the great civil war had left their lands in ruins. The Skullsplitter, Bloodscalp, and Darkspear tribes set off to claim their own lands within the vast jungles of Stranglethorn. Though a fragile peace had settled over the broken empire, rumors of a prophecy that Hakkar would one day be reborn into the world spread.
When the Horde first arrived on Azeroth the troll tribes initially ignored the orcs, but when the Horde destroyed Stormwind and was moving to destroy Lordaeron, the forest trolls saw the perfect chance to gain vengeance for their defeat in the Troll Wars. Led by the mighty the Forest Trolls proved to be a great asset to the Horde during the Second War and were able to successfully strike against the high elves of Quel'Thalas. However when Warchief Orgrim Doomhammer decided to launch an assault on the humans of Lordaeron instead of continuing the invasion of Quel'Thalas Zul'jin grew furious. The forest trolls ultimately left the Horde when the orcs were defeated and placed into internment camps, with the Revantusk tribe still having a small amount of loyalty to the Horde. The troll race would then return to the former policy of ignoring the Horde until the Third War.
During the Third War the young Warchief heeded the Prophet's words to set sail to Kalimdor. On the way his ships crashed landed on the Darkspear islands and his forces encountered the Darkspear tribe. After helping the Darkspear tribe against the attacking Alliance forces, all sides were captured by murlocs under the command of the Sea Witch Zar'jira. After being saved and following Chieftain Sen'jin's dying wishes the Darkspear tribe swore loyalty to the Horde.
Following the aftermath of the Third War the orcs sent emissaries to the Hinterlands to renew the bonds of loyalty with their former forest troll allies. While the Vilebranch and the Witherbark refused outright, the Revantusk trolls agreed and have become the Horde's ally.
End of the Troll Capitals
In Stranglethorn Vale, the Hakkari and Atal'ai were able to successfully bring forth into Zul'Gurub, with the Gurubashi tribe quickly joining them in hopes of restoring themselves to their former glory. When word of Hakkar's presence reached the Zandalar tribe, they sent a contingent of Gurubashi high priests to stop him. When word reached the Zandalari that the priests had been enslaved by Hakkar, King Rastakhan sent emissaries from the island of Zuldazar to recruit champions from Azeroth's many races in the hope that Hakkar could once again be defeated. The Zandalari's call to arms was answered by the proud members of the Alliance and Horde, who slew the enthralled high priests, the Gurubashi witch doctor , and ultimately Hakkar himself, leaving Zul'Gurub but a shadow of its former glory.
Sometime after the Blood elves joined the Horde, Zul'jin ventured out of Zul'Aman and became enraged that the Troll's eternal enemy joined with his former ally. Before Zul'jin could unleash the Amani within Zul'Aman onto the world and his group entered the scene. At Budd's behest adventurers entered Zul'Aman to steal the treasures within. Not only were the Amani's treasures stolen, adventurers were able to kill Warlord Zul'jin. With Zul'jin dead the forest troll capital became quiet with the surviving Amani grouping under .
In Northrend Zul'Drak became under attack by the Undead Scourge. In desperation to counter the Scourge threat the Drakkari trolls began sacrificing their own Loa animals god and draining their power for themselves. The Zandalari went to Zul'Drak to intervene on the behalf of the Loa and chronicle the end of the Drakkari empire. The empowered Drakkari soon became power-mad, and threatened the forces of the Alliance, Horde, and Argent Crusade who were attempting to fight back the Scourge in Northrend. As a result the adventurers employed by these forces were, after neutralizing the Scourge threat in the lowest reaches of the city, directed against the Drakkari and, with the aid of the Loa who escaped the Drakkari's plot, managed to take out all of the empowered trolls in the city. These adventurers soon converged on Gundrak itself, and there they slew the remaining champions of Zul'Drak, including their leader; High Prophet Gal'darah.
As a result of these events, the Zandalari considered Zul'Drak to have been destroyed by the Scourge.
A New Troll EmpireThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
The recent cataclysm has seen the Revantusk become members of the Horde who are fighting to claim the entire Hinterlands for the tribe and the Horde. The cataclysm has also seen the Shatterspear tribe end their isolationist policy and join the Horde which was now under the command of the new Warchief, .
Meanwhile, a new adventurer who traveled through Stranglethorn would gain the friendship of a raptor chick. Through this chick and its adventurer companion, the Alliance and Horde discovered that Jin'do, now a shade, had enacted a plan to restore the Gurubashi to greatness by resurrecting their high priests and champions (himself included of course) and summoning Hakkar. And while the resurrection of Mandokir and Venoxis was successful, the adventurer managed to throw a wrench into his plans by destroying Jeklik's body and preventing her resurrection.
The Shatterspear was not the only tribe who has seen a change in their stance on the other nations, however. The chaos unleashed by the recent Cataclysm caused immense damage to Zandalar itself, and has thus reshaped the Zandalari's stance about the world as well, and the dwindling remnants of their race. Around the time of the Alliance and Horde's siege on the Twilight Highlands, a meeting was then by the mysterious prophet to discuss the fate of their people. Among those in attendance at the meeting are Vol'jin of the Darkspear, Jin'do of the Gurubashi, Daakara of the Amani and an unknown ice troll leader.
There the tribe leaders are reminded of the falls of Zul'Farrak and Zul'Drak. Zul then says that the troll tribes must unite to form a new Troll Empire. He entices both Jin'do and Daakara with promises of restoring Zul'Gurub and Zul'Aman to their former glory. As the other trolls agree to join the Zandalari, Vol'jin begins walking away and only stops when asked if he would betray his people. Vol'jin retorts that the Horde are his people and promises to stop the Zandalari should they bring war to the land.
Knowing that a new troll empire would be a grave threat to Azeroth, Vol'jin has sent Darkspear emissaries to both Orgrimmar and Stormwind, knowing that the Horde alone can not stop the Zandalari. While Vol'jin's efforts have been able to keep the Amani contained within Zul'Aman, the Gurubashi were able to launch an attack on Stranglethorn before being pushed back to Zul'Gurub. Vol'jin's Darkspear have been able to keep themselves entrenched within both Zul'Aman and Zul'Gurub, the Revantusk and Shatterspear tribes have also refused to join the Zandalari and have stayed true to the Horde.
With the aid of 's Farstriders and 's Rangers Vol'jin and the Darkspear where able to keep the Amani hold up inside Zul'Aman. After deciding an appropriate battle plan Vol'jin personally leads a strike force into Zul'Aman and with the aid of adventurers puts an end to which severely weakening the Amani even further and ends Zandalari's efforts within Zul'Aman.
However empowered by the Zandalari's offer the Gurubashi launched an all out assault to claim Stranglethorn, though with the effort of brave adventurers they are pushed back into Zul'Gurub where Darkspear agents have claimed the entrance. These agents were then able to discover that is wrestling Hakkar the Soulflayer into submission, holding him by spirit chains and stripping out his power into himself. With this knowledge they recruited adventurers who ventured into Zul'Gurub and put and end to the Gurubashi leadership before freeing Hakkar who swiftly killed Jin'do. Thus dealing the Gurubashi a sever blow though and removing the Zandalari's influence, though at the cost of The Soulflayer's freedom.
The Return of the Thunder KingThis section concerns content exclusive to Mists of Pandaria.
When the mists hiding the southern continent Pandaria lifted, the Zandalari realized they had an opportunity to claim the land as their own by resuming their allegiance with the mogu. To cement this allegiance, and their place on Pandaria, the trolls invaded the Kun-Lai region of the continent to find and retrieve the corpse of Lei Shen, the Thunder King and first emperor of the Mogu Empire. With their powerful voodoo magic, the Zandalari were successful in resurrecting him, and, shortly after the Alliance and Horde made landfall, the resurrected Thunder King began an ernest campaign to restore the Mogu Empire to glory. He was aided by the united troll forces, with the Council of Elders, a group consisting of the leaders of the Farraki, Gurubashi, Drakkari and Amani, standing guard over the entrance to his palace.
It wasn't long, however, before the forces of the Alliance and Horde assaulted the Thunder King's palace and eliminated the troll presence within, an act that Lei Shen was thankful for as he considered them 'filth'. Shortly afterwards, these adventurers would end Lei Shen's life as well, ending the threat of both empires on Pandaria.
Blood in the SnowThis section concerns content exclusive to Mists of Pandaria.
This failure did not stop the Zandalari. In Dun Morogh, an emissary of Zandalar arrived to aid the Frostmane tribe in building an army to assault Ironforge. Using enslaved elementals, the Frostmane summoned a mighty blizzard around their home and kidnapped a number of dwarven scouts. While the Bronzebeard and Wildhammer clans refused to take action out of distrust for the Dark Iron clans, Moira chose to lead her people to defend Ironforge herself; aided by King Varian Wrynn and a trio of adventurers. Their combined forces rescued the prisoners, stopped the blizzard, and killed Hekima the Wise, ending the Frostmane threat.
Trolls are very isolated beings. Most trolls, excluding a few tribes (one such being the Darkspear), don't speak any of the common languages. Wild jungle trolls and coastal trolls are territorial and hostile toward trolls of other tribes. They are highly tribally spiritual. The center of a tribe's spirit is the tribe's priest or superior hunter.
Other than tribes such as the Darkspear, most trolls will attack outsiders on sight, even trolls of other tribes. Uncivilized trolls live all across Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms. The jungle near Booty Bay in the Eastern Kingdoms is infamous for its many aggressive jungle troll inhabitants.
However Trolls willing to fight and work for travelers and armies in exchange for gold are not unknown. Arthas and the Alliance used Troll Mercenaries on a mission in Northrend (though this particularly job ended tragically for the mercenaries). The Shadowtooth tribe also assisted in defense of the World Tree.
- Main article: Zandali
Most troll tribes speak Zandali as their primary language, though some have descended so far into barbarism they have forgotten Zandali and use tribal dialects as their primary language instead.
When speaking orcish, trolls often have a strong Jamaican and Cuban-sounding accent. However, when speaking Zandali, the accent is not necessary.
The names given to troll children are usually of one syllable, to facilitate the addition or prefixes of suffixes (titles). Some examples of male names include Vol, Ros, Gal, and Kaz; some examples of female names include Shi, Mith, Hai, and So. Trolls do not normally have family names, though they occasionally use their tribe’s name in its place.
The following prefixes of suffixes are added to a troll’s name to denote positions of honor or tribal status:
- fon = suffix, means “loner,” or someone who has deliberately absented himself from troll society and its obligations
- jin = suffix, means “leader” and refers to the tribal chief or elder
- Zul = prefix, roughly translates to “great” and can denote a master (person) or a location (city)
Cannibalism and voodoo
Cannibalism is a relatively common troll practice. Several specific troll tribes have been confirmed as cannibalistic, including the Mossflayer and Vilebranch tribes. All of the currently known tribes of ice trolls practice cannibalism. Sand trolls, forest trolls, dark trolls, and jungle trolls are also frequently cannibalistic. Notable exceptions include the Zandalar and Revantusk tribes. The Darkspear tribe practiced cannibalism until they joined forces with the Horde, who forbade the practice.
Not all trolls practice voodoo, but it is as widespread as cannibalism. Little is known about the emergence of voodoo among the trolls, for most tribes that possess such knowledge are unwilling to share it with outsiders. However, with the recent advent of Zandalari trolls to Yojamba Isle, many researchers have speculated that voodoo may have originated with the Zandalari.
A small number of trolls are strikingly larger and more heavily muscled than the rest of their brethren. Dire trolls do not have a racial distinction from the rest of the troll race. A variety of reasons might be behind this unusual size and musculature. For example, these trolls might have been altered alchemically or magically (see troll berserker). They might also simply have evolved to be larger than average. These large trolls are not regarded as monstrous by other trolls.
Displayed in many troll tribes, the trolls have mummified their deceased in the past. In all cases seen so far, the trolls have had the power to reanimate their dead. The Sandfury and Amani are such tribes. Other races can also reanimate deceased and mummified trolls, as can be seen in Northrend, where many undead trolls are a part of the Scourge legions.
- Main article: Loa
The troll belief system is complex, full of dark spirits and primal, often animalistic gods known as loa. Countless loa exist, most weak, but some very powerful. Most are shapeless, whereas others have animal or creature forms. Troll families often worship their own family loas, cities usually have their own civic deities, and the greatest loa are worshiped by the nation as a whole. The Zandalar tribe believe that powerful, enlightened Zandalari can become loas upon their death.
- The trolls have a long and storied history of summoning hydras.
- Trolls tend to prefer gold in their jewelry.
- Among cultures such as the Bloodscalp tribe, any use of actual utensils counts as fine dining.
- Snakes of all types are venerated throughout troll culture.
- Long ago, the most dedicated of troll war-drummers would allow themselves to be flayed alive in order to provide the hide for their precious instruments. While a troll's incredible natural regeneration allowed one to survive such a grueling ordeal, it was a long and excruciating process that drove many mad with pain. It is said that, if such a war drummer was to be slain while playing such an instrument, his spirit would pass into it.
- Voodoo figurines were built and animated to assist troll witch doctors in minor, everyday tasks such as washing loincloths or scrubbing blood off the hut floor. They were often powered by flasks of mojo, troll sweat, the flesh of tribal enemies, or by devouring tiny portions of their owners' souls.
- Trolls will usually build different types of structures depending on where they live. Each troll empire built sprawling temple-cities similar to real-life mesoamerican architecture, smaller tribes often live in villages built out of wood, and some of them even have the habit of living in carved out trees.
- The battle-cry "For Zul'jin!" became well-known among the trolls of the world after made his legendary escape from his captivity of the high elves near the end of the Second War.
- "One singe, two flash, three cringe, four ash." - Troll nursery rhyme
- Zandalari trolls: These trolls stand upright and have skin colours ranging from white to black, and blue to green, accompanied by glowing eyes of varying colours. Many Zandalari are also seen with stone-like patches on their shoulders, down their arms and forearms, on their ankles and feet, sometimes their chests as well as on their brows and foreheads. These patches might appear in other areas as well. However, there are also many smooth-skinned Zandalari who lack these stone-esque patches. They are the progenitor species from which all other trolls came. The Zandalari make their home on Zandalar, an island in the South Seas.
- Forest trolls: These trolls come in multiple shades of green due to a thin layer of moss (and sometimes other flora) growing on their skin. They formed the Amani Empire that once ruled all of Lordaeron as well as Quel'Thalas.
- Jungle trolls: These trolls range from purple to blue, to gray due to short, soft fur. Some jungle trolls have been born with skin coloured a shade of green. These trolls formed the Gurubashi Empire that ruled the south-eastern and south-western jungles of ancient Kalimdor prior to the Sundering.
- Dark trolls: (aka dark forest trolls) These trolls have gray to black skin and are mostly subterranean. Prior to the Sundering, the dark trolls inhabited areas such as Mount Hyjal as well as areas that would later become Ashenvale, Felwood & Darkshore. After it, some of them still lived on Mount Hyjal, mainly living in vast caverns possibly spanning several regions. Long ago, one of their tribe settled on the edge of the Well of Eternity and became night elves.
- Ice trolls: These trolls have skin coloured white to several shades of blue. They typically have thick manes of hair, more so than other troll species. Prior to the Sundering, ice trolls were Zandalari who settled in the cold areas of northern ancient Kalimdor (later became Northrend) where they founded the Drakkari tribe. Splinter tribes have moved south and begun attacking areas in the Eastern Kingdoms, such as the Frostmane tribe as well as the Winterax tribe.
- Sand trolls: These trolls have coarse and cracked skin that tends to be brown or gold. They have thinner manes of hair than their brethren. They were jungle trolls isolated from the Gurubashi Empire by the Sundering in an area that swiftly became the desert of Tanaris. They have never formed an empire.
Two other kinds of trolls are mentioned, but their validity is disputed:
- Island trolls - The Darkspears are jungle trolls, but were referred to as island trolls in Warcraft III. However this was later changed. Although they may be a minor subspecies of jungle trolls having lived on islands for many years.
- Steppe trolls - Briefly mentioned in the Manual of Monsters: Appendix Three as inhabiting the steppes and grasslands of Azeroth and being allied with the Horde.
History of their discovery
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At one time, only four species of trolls had been discovered on the continents of the Eastern Kingdoms and other known lands. It was commonly believed by eminent scholars from Dalaran and elsewhere that these were the only four species of trolls on all of Azeroth. These included forest trolls, jungle trolls, ice trolls, and the Zandalari themselves. of the Kirin Tor strongly believed that there was a fifth species yet to be discovered based on references she had discovered in her research. Her theory was commonly ridiculed by most scholars in the world, including . It was also believed that trolls were nearly extinct, but were reappearing with the coming of the orcs.
During the Third War, with the discovery of Kalimdor, two more species were discovered including the rare sand trolls and dark trolls, found only on that continent. The orcs discovered the Darkspear island trolls, an offshoot of the jungle trolls, on the Darkspear islands (believed today to be part of the Broken Isles) during their flight from Lordaeron. The Zandalari trolls were first encountered by various races when they set up an expedition on Yojamba Isle in Stranglethorn Vale in order to find allies to defeat the god Hakkar, mentioned above.
Historians and physicians generally classify trolls into four categories: forest trolls, jungle trolls, ice trolls, and sand trolls. The trolls of the Zandalar tribe are considered unclassifiable because the Zandalari are the earliest known trolls, from whom all other trolls are descended. Some debate exists as to how many categories are necessary in order to describe the various species within the troll race. Several notable authorities on the topic have chosen to specify a fifth category: namely, the dark trolls. Some of the scholarly debate includes those that classify Zandalar trolls as jungle trolls or as their own species. Trolls found in desert areas are classified as desert trolls. Because there is only evidence of a single tribe of the species in existence, scholars have begun to classify the species as the Sandfury trolls. Most scholars think them a small and anomalous deviation of the more common troll species, namely the jungle trolls. Some refer to dark trolls as dark forest trolls, implying they believe them be a type of forest troll or derivation thereof. Darkspear trolls are mainly classified as island trolls.
In Day of the Dragon, talks about trolls: "As with elves, dwarves, and especially humans, there had existed different types of trolls. Some few spoke with the sophistication of elves — even while they tried to take one's head. Others ranged toward the more savage, especially those who frequented the barrows and other underground realms. Yet Veressa doubted that there could be any lower form of troll than the three base creatures that had captured her and Falstad — and clearly had darker designs for them."
- Main article: Darkspear
- Zandalari troll
- Dark troll
- Forest troll
- Ice troll
- Jungle troll
- Gurubashi tribe - Namesake and strongest tribe of the Gurubashi Empire.
|High Priestess of , Gurubashi representative on the||Gurubashi tribe, Zandalar tribe||Killable||Lightning Promenade, Throne of Thunder|
|Chieftain of the Skullsplitter tribe||Skullsplitter tribe||Killable||Ruins of Zul'Mamwe, Northern Stranglethorn|
|Warlord of the Gurubashi tribe||Gurubashi tribe, Zandalar tribe||Killable||Mandokir's Domain, Zul'Gurub|
|Chieftain of the Bloodscalp tribe||Bloodscalp tribe||Deceased-Killable||Ruins of Zul'Kunda, Northern Stranglethorn|
|Leader of the Atal'ai||Atal'ai tribe, Hakkari||Killable||Lair of the Chosen, Temple of Atal'Hakkar|
|Ruler of Zul'Gurub||Gurubashi tribe, Zandalar tribe||Deceased-Killable||Altar of the Blood God, Zul'Gurub|
|Outcast witch doctor||Gurubashi tribe, Zandalar tribe||Deceased-Killable||Ruins of Aboraz, Cape of Stranglethorn|
|Chieftain of the Darkspear tribe, Warchief of the Horde||Deceased||Various Locations|
|Father of , former chieftain of the Darkspear tribe||Deceased||Unknown|
|Lead scout of the Darkspear||Alive||Various Locations|
|Champion and quartermaster of the Darkspear tribe||Alive||Orgrimmar Skyway, Orgrimmar|
|Advisor and mentor to , leader of Sen'jin Village||Alive||Sen'jin Village, Durotar|
|Powerful Darkspear shaman||Alive||Echo Isles, Durotar|
|Traitor and self-proclaimed ruler of the Echo Isles||Deceased||Formerly Echo Isles, Durotar|
|Powerful Darkspear druid||Alive||Various Locations|
|Drakkari representative on the||Drakkari tribe, Zandalar tribe||Killable||Lightning Promenade, Throne of Thunder|
|High Prophet of||Drakkari tribe||Killable||Ritual Chamber of Akali, Gundrak|
|Chieftain of the Frostmane tribe||Frostmane tribe||Killable||Frostmane Hold, Dun Morogh|
|Leader of the Frostmane trolls in Coldridge Valley||Frostmane tribe||Killable||Coldridge Valley, Dun Morogh|
|Champion of the Winterax tribe||Winterax tribe||Killable||Amphitheater of Anguish, Zul'Drak|
|Overlord of the Scourge forces in Zul'Drak||Scourge||Killable||Voltarus, Zul'Drak|
|Immortal prophet||Scourge||Killable||Drak'Tharon Overlook, Drak'Tharon Keep|
|Warlord of Zul'Drak||Drakkari tribe||Killable||Zol'Maz Stronghold, Zul'Drak|
|Farraki representative on the||Farraki tribe, Zandalar tribe||Killable||Lightning Promenade, Throne of Thunder|
|Former chieftain of the Sandfury tribe||Sandfury tribe||Deceased-Killable||Zul'Farrak|
|Overseer of Sul||Sandfury tribe||Killable||Zul'Farrak|
|Sister of Velratha, attempted to summon during the Elemental Unrest||Sandfury tribe, Twilight's Hammer||Deceased||Zul'Farrak (Elemental Unrest)|
|Well-traveled hydromancer||Sandfury tribe||Deceased-Killable||Zul'Farrak|
|Sandfury traitor||Independent||Deceased||Sandsorrow Watch, Tanaris|
|Ancient martyr of Zul'Farrak killed in a war between the sand trolls and the qiraji||Sandfury tribe||Killable||Zul'Farrak|
|God King of the Zandalari||Alive||Zuldazar, Zandalar|
|Dark Prophet of the Zanchuli Council||Alive||Unknown|
|Led the Zandalari assault on the Mogu'shan Vaults||Deceased-Killable||Emperor's Reach, Mogu'shan Vaults; Lightning Promenade, Throne of Thunder|
|Herald of , recruited the Frostmane tribe||Killable||Shimmer Ridge, Blood in the Snow|
|Berseker imbued with power by||Killable||Overgrown Statuary, Throne of Thunder|
|Leader of Zandalari forces during the Zandalari Troll Wars||Deceased||Unknown|
|The Gatekeeper, formerly Hand of Rastakhan||Killable||Stormsea Landing, Isle of Thunder|
|Resurrected , the Thunder King of the mogu||Killable||Thunder's Call, Kun-Lai Summit|
|Leader of the Zandalari Beast Ward||Killable||Royal Amphitheater, Throne of Thunder|
|Loa of Zandalar||Active||Cache of Madness, Zul'Gurub|
Lore and legends
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There are many tales and legends of trolls in Azeroth. Most of the known tales today come from the Gurubashi. For sure there are more troll legends than those, but they weren't handed down to us.
Moon over the Vale
Moon Over the Vale is a short poem or song describing the life of these trolls on an old stone tablet.
Gri'lek the Wanderer
Gri'lek the Wanderer tells of a troll who lost his arm. Because he turned away from the spirits, he's now doomed to wander. The story is written on a stone tablet, but there's also a named "Arm of Gri'lek".
Fall of Gurubashi
The Emperor's Tomb
The Emperor's Tomb is a very short poem or song, which tells the trolls to leave or die. Like most troll lore, it can be found on a stone tablet
The Stone of the Tides
The Stone of the Tides is a Gurubashi legend about a mighty artifact - the . It chooses a so-called Tidebearer, giving him immense power, but also killing him slowly. The only source of this tale today is the Royal Library in Stormwind.
The Twin Empires
The Founding of Quel'Thalas
Arathor and the Troll Wars
Throughout the world, there have been many artifacts from the troll empires. Weapons of power that have existed for possibly millennia. Some of these artifacts are known as:
- - A renowned greatsword originating from the Amani Empire.
- - A renowned greatsword originating from the Farraki tribe.
- - A renowned greatsword originating from the Gurubashi Empire.
- - The magical and powerful fist weapon having once belonged to an Amani warlord by the name of .
- - A magical mace once worn by a Zandalari high priest of the tiger deity, Shirvallah. It was used to brutally claim many lives a long time ago.
- - Indication of trolls having worn armour made of chitin. Most likely that of aqir.
- - An artifact from when a tribe of dark trolls were transitioning from worshipping the loa to .
- - A piece of equipment that once had vivid imagery of trolls fighting faceless ones.
- - A pair of spiked boots made to fit the front of a troll's foot. While trolls usually do not wear much on their feet, this pair shows that some trolls adorned their feet for combat, and possibly to act as another set of weaponry.
- A possible greataxe might have originated from the Drakkari Empire, had the initial idea of having Gundrak as a raid, not been scrapped. Thus, it would have been the ice troll equivalent of the above-mentioned swords.
- It is possible that these weapons of power may have been crafted by either the Zandalari, for when the great Empire of Zul split into the four main empires (Zandalari, Amani, Gurubashi & Drakkari). As a gift for their brethren.
- Another possibility is that the aforementioned weapons were gifted to each troll empire, or troll species, as a sign of thanks for their devotion. (Most reasonable considering the age of sand trolls as a species compared to the others.)
- It could also be possible that the weapons were once belonging to the first emperors of the ancient empires. Jin'rohk having belonged to the first emperor of the Gurubashi Empire. While Zin'rokh belonged to the first emperor of the Amani Empire.
- Trolls during the Aqir and Troll War seem to have had a habit of taking aqir chitin to use in their armour. Sand trolls are likely to have carried on with this due to their proximity to the qiraji.
Notes & trivia
- Despite World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 retconning the trolls predating the arrival of titans as established in [[Ask CDev Answers - Round 2], the Zandalar description reinforces the Ask CDev version.
- In the canceled Warcraft Adventures, was served by trolls which had mottled and grey skin, a fact that might have inspired the description of the trolls later also said to have served him during the War of the Ancients, and maybe even the drogbar.
- Some trolls can be seen with three toes, two frontal and one located as a protrusion from their heel. For some reason, not all trolls seem to have a third toe. An example would be the Zandalari, who show no sign of a third toe, while the playable jungle troll do, as well as the (outdated) forest and ice troll models.
- Zul'jin's model in Heroes of the Storm has no third toe, although his model from the Zul'Aman raid does.
- , an ice troll from the does have a heel-toe.
- , a jungle troll from the does have a heel-toe.
- , a forest troll from the does not have a heel-toe.
- , a sand troll from the does not have a heel-toe.
- Trolls of all types speak in a Jamaican accent.
- The Jamaican accent most likely does not originate from trolls having tusks, as female trolls have lower fangs. It does make sense that male troll tusks have an impact on their accent, however, for females, it does not.
- The tusks of a male troll grow out from their upper premolars, with canines in front and molars behind. This can be seen on the male troll model when their mouth is fully open. However, a skull from Warlord of Draenor also shows their tusks protruding from underneath their cheekbones. It is most likely that the male troll model is the more accurate one.
- Female trolls do not have tusks, instead their lower canines have grown into fangs. According to the game models.
- Trolls of both genders have sharp upper and lower canines.
- In the case of troll druid morphs, both the bear form and cat form have their tusks located on the lower jaw, seemingly not connected to anything in particular. This might just be model-related, rather than an accurate lore representation of the tusks' roots.
Art of a troll headhunter by Samarskiy on DeviantArt.
Art of a sacrificial ceremony by bayardwu on DeviantArt.
Art of a troll spearthrower by zhou he (brainlesszombie) on ArtStation.
- ^ Stackpole, Michael A.. "10", Vol'jin: Shadows of the Horde, 141 (ebook). ISBN 978-1416-55067-9.
- ^ a b c d Ask CDev Answers - Round 2
- ^ a b World of Warcraft: Official Beginner's Guide, 47
- ^ Height#Troll subspecies
- ^ a b c d Troll Compendium: Troll Traits
- ^ a b Troll Compendium: Forest Trolls
- ^ Kazra'jin has fur
- ^ a b Troll Compendium: Jungle Trolls
- ^ a b c World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1
- ^ Gri'lek's Adventure Guide
- ^ Vol'jin: Shadows of the Horde pg. 21
- ^ a b Arathor and the Troll Wars
- ^ Vol'jin: Shadows of the Horde pg. 56
- ^ Vol'jin: Shadows of the Horde pg. 226, 254, 255, 258
- ^ a b Vol'jin: Shadows of the Horde, pg. 200
- ^ a b c d e f Troll Compendium: Early Troll Civilization
- ^ a b World of Warcraft: The Magazine Volume 2 Issue 1
- ^ The Founding of Quel'Thalas
- ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 138
- ^ a b Patch 4.1.0#Trailer
- ^ a b Troll Compendium: Zandalar Tribe
- ^ http://us.battle.net/wow/en/zone/zulgurub/
- ^ Mummified Troll Remains
- ^ Shadows of the Loa
- ^ Troll lodge concept art, troll lumber mill
- ^ Blood of the Highborne
- ^ Troll Headhunter (Warcraft III)
- ^ TCG The Hunt for Illidan/51
- ^ Dave Kosak on Twitter: Zandalari model in 5.2 is how Blizzard had always envisioned them.
- ^ a b c Monster Guide, 138
- ^ Troll Compendium: Gurubashi Tribe
- ^ "Eternity's End: The Druids Arise", Warcraft III. Blizzard Entertainment. Dark Forest Troll Hut.
- ^ Chronicle Volume 1, pg 93
- ^ Chronicle Volume 1, pg 77
- ^ Troll Compendium: Dark Trolls
- ^ The Waking World and the Well of Eternity
- ^ Troll Compendium: Ice Trolls
- ^ Troll Compendium: Ice Troll Tribes
- ^ Troll Compendium: Sand Trolls
- ^ Troll Compendium: Sand Troll Tribes
- ^ The Last Guardian, 10, 31-32, 98-103, 107, 162, 174
- ^ Troll Compendium
- ^ Lands of Mystery, 81-83
- ^ Alliance Player's Guide, 179
- ^ Lands of Mystery, 81
- ^ Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos Demo - Chapter 5: Countdown to Extinction OPTIONAL QUEST Island Trolls; Countdown to Extinction
- ^ Day of the Dragon, 254
- ^ Ice troll#Gallery
- ^ World of Warcraft at BlizzCon 2017
- ^ The Sundering, pg. 67