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Worgen

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This article is about the worgen lore. For the playable race, see Worgen (playable). For the curse that turns one into a worgen, see worgen curse.
Worgen
CurseWorgen1CoverSample.jpg
Faction/Affiliation
Character classes
Racial capital

Alliance Gilneas City (abandoned)
Neutral Daral'nir

  Formerly
Racial leader(s)

Alliance   Genn Greymane
Neutral  Arugal †
Neutral   Alpha Prime †

Homeworld
Area(s)
Language(s)
Average height

8 ft (244 cm) (female), 8 ft (244 cm) (males while hunched over)[1]

Remember that the beast in the shadows might be your salvation.
— Gilnean saying

Worgen [ˈwɔɹgɛn] are large, lupine humanoids that walk upright, but hunt and howl as wolves, and lope on all fours to run. They primarily inhabit forests and are natural hunters. Being bitten by or drinking the blood of a worgen transmits the worgen curse and causes humans and night elves to be transformed into one. After the transformation, those that are overcome by rage and guilt gradually lose all vestiges of their former lives and turn mindless. By controlling their emotions via medication, magic, and self-discipline, worgen may resist being overcome by their feral instincts.

Those that become so by choice, like the members of the Wolf Cult and Wolfcult, embrace their new lives as neither man nor beast and form tribal societies known as "packs", such as the Bloodfang, the Nightbane, and Bloodmoon pack. Other groups are more disciplined, like the Gilnean worgen, but still run and hunt on all fours.

The worgen were created during the War of the Satyr by the grieving priestess Belysra Starbreeze and the rebel druid Ralaar Fangfire. They sought a solution to the wolf pack form, which embodied the full fury of the wolf Ancient Goldrinn, something the druids had never been able to command, and believed that the magic of Elune could tame its uncontrollable rage. She thus created the Scythe of Elune, which mixed the power of the moon goddess with the wolf form, turning Ralaar and the Druids of the Pack into the first worgen.[2] They turned the tide in the war,[3] but when Malfurion Stormrage called Ralaar (now known as Alpha Prime) a monstrosity, the worgen attacked the night elves as well.[2] Malfurion was forced to seal them within the Emerald Dream after it was discovered that their bite turned other night elves into more worgen, through what is now called the worgen curse.[4]

Centuries later, Alpha Prime and his followers were freed from the Dream by the human archmage Arugal to defend Gilneas from the undead Scourge. While extremely effective against the undead army, the worgen then turned on the Gilneans, prompting them to close the Greymane Wall. While no worgen managed to enter the city, humans who had been bitten by them did. They would turn into worgen themselves and were hunted by the nobility of Gilneas, including King Genn Greymane. Led by Alpha Prime, the worgen outside grew in number, used tunnels under the Greymane Wall, and mounted an invasion to bite as many as possible.[2] After being taught how to control their inner beast by the night elves, many worgen are now members of the Alliance.

History

Origin

Ralaar Fangfire was the first night elf to become a worgen.
Main article: War of the Satyr

Long ago, amid a brutal war between the night elves and the demonic satyrs in Kalimdor, a group of druids practiced a powerful yet unwieldy form that embodied the fury of the wolf Ancient, Goldrinn. Led by Ralaar Fangfire, these Druids of the Pack sought to temper the uncontrollable rage inherent in their chosen form. To do so, they willingly submitted to the energies of the Scythe of Elune, a mystical artifact created from Goldrinn's fang and the staff of Elune.

Rather than abate the druids' fury, however, the weapon transformed Ralaar and his followers into worgen: bestial humanoids enslaved by their own primal instincts. Blinded by all-consuming rage, Ralaar's druids tore through friend and foe alike during battle with the satyrs. Night elves wounded by the unruly beasts contracted a virulent curse that turned them into worgen as well. Desperate to stanch the affliction's spread, Archdruid Malfurion Stormrage mournfully banished the worgen beneath Daral'nir within the Emerald Dream, where they would be in peaceful slumber for all eternity.[5]

Release

Over the years, the Scythe of Elune was hidden in Ashenvale, and the Druids of the Scythe - the original worgen - were forgotten. The only proof that remained was a journal written by Fandral Staghelm.[3] Before their release, wolf-men were known in human folklore as worgen.[6][7][8] They were known in only in the timid whispers of the old, or the fanciful embellishments of the old,[6] and a farmer's child was likely to hear myths of beastly wolf-men stalking the fields and marshes outside the village.[7] In his studies, the mage Ur saw the worgen in a homeworld he described as a dark place of nightmare, and although he wished to prove worgen were real, he warned that they should not be summoned.[7] While many remained in the resting state,[4] some kaldorei worgen awoke and traveled the dream some time after their banishment, while others practiced shadow magic some time before their release.[7]

One of the worgen in Shadowfang Keep.

Arugal and the Bloodfang

Eighteen years after the Dark Portal,[8] the undead Scourge arrived at the Greymane Wall outside Gilneas. Gilneas had constructed the wall to seperate from the Alliance of Lordaeron and to protect the city from the oncoming Scourge. When the undead arrived at the wall, however, it became clear it would not hold back the dead forever.

Archmage Arugal told Genn of his findings, about bestial creatures imbued with preternatural strength and ferocity. He sensed that they were in some sort of resting state and wished to be freed, and suggested he could do so with Genn's blessing. The king agreed, on the condition that Arugal summon one first to be inspected. He did so, and with Genn's permission, summoned more, including Alpha Prime, and put them against the Scourge outside the wall.

As the battle between the Gilneans and Scourge raged outside the wall, Arugal performed his summoning. He opened a rift connecting the physical world with the Emerald Dream, drawing the worgen into Silverpine Forest. The wolf-men wasted no time in turning their fury on the Scourge. They tore through the undead in a storm of fang and claw, and the creatures were even more powerful than Arugal had expected.[8]

At first this plan worked, and the Scourge were forced to fall back. However, with the undead army in retreat, Alpha Prime and the summoned worgen turned on the Gilnean soldiers as well. After the retreat of the Scourge, Archmage Arugal betrayed his nation and swore loyalty to Alpha Prime and developed a loyalty to the worgen. Gilnean soldiers bitten by the worgen were taken inside the wall, and when they became worgen themselves, were hunted and killed, but could not be exterminated.[4] Alpha Prime was the master of the worgen in Silverpine forest, and held the maddened Arugal under his sway.[3]

Led by Alpha Prime, and aided by the Archmage Arugal, the worgen of Silverpine sieged the keep of the noble Baron Silverlaine. Situated above the tiny hamlet of Pyrewood, the keep quickly fell into shadow and ruin, now known as Shadowfang Keep. There, Alpha Prime and Arugal Arugal created the Wolf Cult to search for the missing Scythe of Elune.[9] The Wolf Cult recruited humans willing to become worgen.[9] The curse rapidly spread among the human population, transforming ordinary men and women into ravenous, feral creatures immune to undeath. Arugal also used his magic to curse the village people of Pyrewood to turn into worgen whenever the sun went down.[10] Those that followed Alpha Prime would become the Bloodfang Pack, those that served Arugal became the Shadowfang Pack, and those cursed to appear as worgen only at night became the Moonrage Pack.

One of the worgen in Ashenvale, loyal to Velinde Starsong.

Velinde and the Terrowulf

At approximately the same time, the night elf Sentinel Velinde Starsong was given the task of clearing Felwood of demons.

While the Scourge ravaged the Eastern Kingdoms, Felwood was under siege by demonic forces, left over from the second invasion of the Burning Legion. The wounded and the dying were transported back to Darnassus, and Velinde Starsong was tasked with finding a means to defeat the demons. She prayed to Elune for a sign, and spent long hours in Darnassian libraries searching for an answer. As her time to return to her post drew near, her prayers were answered. Velinde had never heard of the Druids of the Scythe, and while searching for an answer to the demon problem, discovered the journal of Fandral Staghelm written after the death of his son, describing Scythe of Elune and wolf-men who had turned the tide in the War of the Satyr. She recalled as well that her aunt had spoken of an ancient artifact secretly entrusted to her before her death, and went to investigate her tomb. There, she prayed once again to Elune and was granted the Scythe of Elune, the very artifact the journal spoke of.[3]

She prayed to Elune and was granted the Scythe of Elune, which had been the tool for the creation of the original worgen, and which could also summon worgen. Velinde received a vision after touching the scythe, in which the worgen battled an unflinching enemy, Lords of the Emerald Flame, in a vicious war.[11] In reality, the Lords were the satyr that had fought against the night elves and worgen in the War of the Satyr.

Using the Scythe of Elune, Velinde was able to summon thirty worgen to fight at her side against the demons.[3] Later Velinde began to notice that some of her force were unaccounted for. It was as though the Scythe of Elune no longer required her presence to perform the summoning process. Perplexed by this development, she ordered the remaining worgen to remain at the Shrine of Mel'Thandris in Ashenvale and began to search for Archmage Arugal, whom she had heard also summoned worgen.[11] From that point on her fate became a mystery to her comrades, but it was rumored that she was killed in Duskwood and lost the Scythe of Elune.[12] The Terrowulf worgen stayed at the Shrine in Ashenvale for a while, and eventually left, though it is not known where they went.

A member of the Nightbane Pack in Duskwood.

Jitters and the Nightbane

Velinde believed Archmage Arugal could be of help and set out to visit Shadowfang Keep, taking with her the Scythe of Elune. Upon her arrival in Booty Bay, she sent word to Shadowfang Keep of her intention to visit. Unbeknownst to her, Arugal had sworn loyalty to Alpha Prime, and Shadowfang Keep had been made a base for the newly forming Wolf Cult. Her missive never reached either of the pack's leaders, however, and instead fell into the hands of Varkas, a follower of Alpha Prime who sought the scythe to overthrow the pack leader. He and two others set out from Shadowfang Keep, determined to intercept Velinde and take the scythe for their own. Velinde traveled from Booty Bay northward, and as her caravan reached Duskwood - a land cursed to eternal darkness several years prior - she felt as if she were being watched, and retreated to an abandoned mine called Roland's Doom for shelter. There, Varkas and his two followers attacked. In the chaos, Velinde dropped her torch, inadvertently lighting old explosives, and all four died in the resulting cave-in.[3]

Not long after, the Defias Brotherhood began to excavate mines to fund their own nefarious schemes against Stormwind. While excavating Roland's Doom, a paranoid member - named Jitters - found the Scythe of Elune amidst the rubble. Once he touched it, the very shadows erupted with worgen from the Emerald Dream, killing his comrades as they fled. Jitters lost the Scythe in the chaos, and hid in a barn in a nearby farmstead owned by Sven Yorgen. A few days later, Sven left for Darkshire, and the Dark Riders arrived, driven by the need to collect artifacts and demanding information on the Scythe of Elune from Sven's wife. When she attempted to lead them away, they killed her and her children.[13] It is also known that the dark mage Morganth was searching for the Scythe of Elune, and stole  [Ur's Treatise on Shadow Magic] as well.[14]

The worgen in Duskwood grew in number, and took over the Rotting Orchard, Roland's Doom, and Brightwood Grove. There, the newly forming Nightbane Pack initiated humans to grow their numbers, constructed huts, practiced shadowmagic, warred amongst themselves, and thrived. The Duskwood and Silverpine worgen made contact, and served Alpha Prime as well as a Duskwood sect of the Wolf Cult, practicing the same rituals and initiations, and searching for the Scythe of Elune for their master.[15] They used Manor Mistmantle and Roland's Doom as sites for rituals and initiation respectively.[15]

World of Warcraft

WoW Icon update.png This section concerns content related to the original World of Warcraft.
A member of the Moonrage Pack.

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Twenty five years after the Dark Portal, Arugal was decapitated by the Forsaken and buried in an unmarked grave, and the worgen under his protection turned to live on the wilds of Silverpine Forest. During this time, Alpha Prime and his Bloodfang Pack had entered Gilneas using tunnels under the Greymane wall,[4] and had been growing in number inside the nation for years.[8] It is discovered that humans can become worgen, such as Landen Stilwell.

The Kirin Tor sent Sorcerer Ashcrombe from Dalaran to investigate Arugal's progress with the undead here in Silverpine Forest. Little did the know that the wizard had lost grasp on sanity. Once freed, he rushed to report to the Kirin Tor. In preparation for an assault on Shadowfang Keep, two Forsaken deathstalkers were sent to the keep to gather intelligence. Days passed, and they did not return. Without their information, the Forsaken could not do a successful attack. While scouting the Shadowfang Keep, Deathstalker Adamant was captured and thrown into a cell guarded by a worgen named Rethilgore. Deathstalker Vincent was later slain and left lying on the floor. Archmage Arugal resolved that if the investigating agents of the Forsaken and Kirin Tor would not serve his master with their sword and knowledge of his enemies, their moldering remains would serve him as a testament to what happens when one is foolish enough to trespass in his domain.

In Ashenvale, the Sentinels began to search for Velinde Starsong, finding the Terrowulf pack occupying the Howling Vale. Though the sentinels did not know what the worgen were, it is discovered that they are in some way related to the Scythe of Elune.

In Duskwood, the Carevin family hired adventurers to hunt the Nightbane Pack, hoping and failing to keep their numbers down.

Wrath of the Lich King

One of the worgen on Bloodmoon Isle.
Wrath of the Lich King This section concerns content related to Wrath of the Lich King.

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Twenty seven years after the Dark Portal opened, the Lich King Arthas had heard of Arugal's activities and brought him back from the dead to work for him. This also meant that several worgen under Arugal's command, the Wolfcult, allied with the Scourge in Northrend, staying in particular in the Grizzly Hills.[16]

Some worgen that served under Arugal have been forced into the service of the Lich King, turning them into death knights.[17] When worgen were pressed into the service of the Lich King, their minds were flooded with his indomitable will. The instincts of the curse were shattered by his power, leaving the logical, human mind in the service of the Scourge. Worgen death knights are entirely of their own minds once freed, the bestial instincts having been shattered by the Lich King's will, and their self-control having been restored. The result is similar to a worgen who completed the Ritual of Balance. When the Knights of the Ebon Blade were freed from the Lich King after the Battle for Light's Hope Chapel, only the human portions of the mind remained, giving the now free, undead worgen control over its destiny,[18] aside from their new Eternal Hunger.

Cataclysm

Worgen after the Cataclysm.
Cataclysm This section concerns content related to Cataclysm.
Main article: Worgen (playable)

In World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, it is revealed that the worgen curse has spread into the secluded kingdom of Gilneas, transforming many of its inhabitants into worgen. However, with the help of their night elf allies, they have developed a partial treatment to the curse which allows them to retain their sanity even while transformed.[19] The Gilneans, many of which are now infected with the worgen curse, are now found across the world, fighting for the Alliance in the Southern Barrens, Ashenvale, Felwood, and many other areas.

Teldrassil

While the Gilneas Liberation Front and Bloodfang Pack fought the Forsaken in Gilneas and Silverpine Forest, most of their non-worgen citizens fled Gilneas to the safety of Darnassus. The night elves, who created the curse in the first place, felt obliged to help the Gilneans. They created a dwelling in Darnassus for them to seek refuge in as the war for their home rages on. Afterwards, Gilneas was re-inducted into the Alliance.[20]

Gilneas

After the Cataclysm, the gate to the Greymane Wall was destroyed, allowing the Forsaken to attack and invade Gilneas unhindered. Where once they attacked Gilneas city, the Bloodfang Pack fought to defend it from the Forsaken in the northern headlands. Within the city, Hiram Creed - a black drakonid in disguise - created the Blackhowl pack, including worgen and humans strengthened and poisoned by his dragon blood.

Silverpine Forest

Gilnean worgen.

In Silverpine, former rebel leader Darius Crowley led the Worgen offensive to defend Gilneas, with the help of Ivar Bloodfang and the Bloodfang pack. However, agents of Sylvanas Windrunner kidnapped his daughter Lorna Crowley and held her ransom in exchange for Crowley's surrender. Darius ultimately chose to surrender and fled into Gilneas. However, Bloodfang continues to the fight against the Forsaken in the Hillsbrad Foothills and has even recruited the aid of the Stormpike Guard. Gilnean harvest-witches afflicted with the curse were trained as druids, some posing as inconspicuous bears and launching organized bear attacks on Forsaken battalions.

Many worgen have taken up the druidic arts as a way to cope with their transformation, to help control their animalistic side or even to learn more about themselves and the powers that helped their race begin.

Felwood

According to Denmother Ulrica in Talonbranch Glade, with the bringing of the Gilnean worgen into the Alliance, it appears that even the feral worgen of Kalimdor have joined the fold. These worgen would be the original night elves of the Druids of the Pack, who caused the worgen to come into existence, to begin with. Together, the night elf worgen, the Gilnean worgen, and the night elves formed the Talonbranch Pack, seeking to heal the forest and defeat both the demons and the goblins in the area.

Mount Hyjal

Some Gilnean worgen joined the Twilight's Hammer and became Lycanthoth Vandals. Others joined the Cenarion Circle and became guardians of Goldrinn's shrine. The Lycanthoth vandals attempted to usurp Goldrinn with their own dark wolf god, Lycanthoth, but were defeated by those loyal to Goldrinn, including worgen, orcs, tauren, and night elves. Upon Lycanthoth's defeat, Goldrinn was able to return to the mortal world for the first time since his death ten thousand years ago in the War of the Ancients.

Duskwood

The Carevin family continues to seek those willing to hunt the Nightbane pack and cull their numbers. Tobias Mistmantle had received a letter from his brother Stalvan but arrived in Darkshire to hear that he was dead. As the town would not tell him, he was forced to investigate his brother's fate on his own. Meanwhile, Oliver Harris has hired Jitters as hired help, as he catches, tests treatments on, and decapitates mindless Nightbane worgen using a guillotine. One subject turns out to be Sven Yorgen, who was bitten some time after his family was murdered by the Dark Riders.

Warlords of Draenor

Warlords of Draenor This section concerns content related to Warlords of Draenor.

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A pack of Gilnean worgen led by Packleader Vitale appears in Shadowmoon Valley wearing Bloodfang Pack warpaint and serving as Lunarfall Guards.

Legion

Legion This section concerns content related to Legion.

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After participating in the Battle for the Broken Shore, the Gilneas Brigade engaged with the Forsaken's fleet in Stormheim, and established the outpost of Greywatch. They fought with Sylvanas' Queensguard for both the  [Aegis of Aggramar], and the Warden Towers spread around the Broken Isles.

Battle for Azeroth

Battle for Azeroth This section concerns content related to Battle for Azeroth.

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After the Battle for Lordaeron, the Bloodfang Pack continued to hunt the Forsaken in Silverpine and aided the Gilneans and elves in the Battle for Darkshore.

When Tess Greymane wished to become a worgen, her father refused to give her the bite.

In Duskwood, Vassandra Stormclaw began working with Oliver Harris to find treatments to the worgen curse, and have been catching Nightbane worgen as test subjects. The residents of Duskwood had been plagued by Bloodeyes, a particularly ferocious member of the Nightbane pack. Master Harris's sedative was used to bring the worgen back to Vassandra Stormclaw alive, who deemed her a perfect subject to test cures on.[21]

Biology

Halford Ramsey as a worgen

Appearance

Worgen are wolf-like creatures who possess coarse hair, pointed ears, and long snouts. However, one will also immediately notice their differences from wolves, namely their powerful, two-legged bodies which sport long fangs and dagger-like claws.[7] When worgen shapeshift, their bodies swell, growing a third in girth and height, originally loose-fitting jerkins ripping loudly.[22] A male worgen is at least as tall as a male kaldorei, but nearly twice as wide and far more muscled.[23] Females are on average around 8 feet tall, as are males when hunched over.[1]

Worgen are faster and stronger than humans, with better eyesight and an animal instinct inside them that courses through their veins.[24] Due to their ties with the wilds, worgen can travel great distances by sprinting on four limbs at speeds rivaling even the swiftest horses, nightsabers, and mechanostriders.[5] Worgen can leap great distances,[2][25][26] across rooftops,[27] between ships at sea,[24] and over battlements.[15]

Feral worgen enjoying a meal.

Diet

Worgen possess a strong preference to meat.[2][15][28][29] Worgen are omnivorous in human form,[30] and are called carnivores and predators in worgen form.[22][29][31]

Some worgen like their meat raw and fresh from the hunt,[32] and Gilnean worgen hunt boar and deer in packs and on all fours.[28] A worgen's feral side will never be fully at rest,[4] and some fantasize about the hunt even in human form.[33] Livestock went missing months prior to the attack on Gilneas,[2] and worgen without morals or those struggling for control have been tempted by human flesh.[2][15][34] Worgen in the Alliance hunt for food in a way that the rest of the Alliance cannot, and can feed upon things others could not, but Genn Greymane still relishes the taste of summer's first fruits.[30]

Senses

Worgen have heightened senses, including sight, smell, and hearing.[2][4][15][28][35] The worgen curse does more than heighten physical senses, and worgen can see things that no normal human can, such as auras.[28] Eyesight increases in worgen form.[2][24] Even those that once needed glasses can see as never before and more clearly than ever dreamed possible,[2] though may still need glasses in human form.[4] Genn can see better in his worgen form, even through intense rain.[24]

Worgen have a great sense of smell.[2][15][28] Worgen can detect the smell of the earth, the flora, the lingering scents of foraging animals and their waste, and every odor is unique and immediately perceptible and identifiable.[2] Worgen can smell blood, meat, and prey from a great distance,[2][15][28][36] and may be able to smell fear,[37] the scent of fel,[38] and more. Eric Thibeau claims to smell undeath, hatred, violence, and doubt. Mardigan fought a man who sought a potion to mask his scent from worgen.[15]

Worgen have more sensitive hearing.[4] Darius Crowley could not help but overhear conversations under Tal'doren, thanks to his heightened hearing.[4] Being a worgen, hairs on the back of Genn's neck stood on end to alert him of someone behind him.[35] Odo the Blindwatcher lost his eyesight long ago and adapted to using his other senses, similar to bats.

Reproduction

A worgen stalking his prey

The worgen curse is just a curse. Its origins are rooted in the druidic pack form that was later altered by the Scythe of Elune. The end result is worgen we see today, beings that can transmit their affliction to others via a single bite. In theory, if two worgen were to mate and produce an offspring, that offspring would not be a worgen. The child would merely possess the genetic material of his or her parents, like any other child sans the curse.[39] An oft-forgotten offspring of the Big Bad Wolf exists, though it is unknown how.

In addition to bites, the curse can also be transferred through the consumption of worgen blood,[40] or cursed directly from the Scythe of Elune.[2]

Aging, death, and undeath

As with many worgen, Genn Greymane more often than not remained in his lupine form. He felt stronger, younger that way. When in human form, however, he felt the aches of age.[35] There is no healing factor, however, and many worgen are seen with eye patches,[4] several scars,[6] and damaged ears,[15] and bullets must be removed.[4]

Even in death, worgen still retain their lupine form,[15][34][41] something Jarod Shadowsong had not expected.[42] The worgen curse is beyond druidism,[34] and worgen return to worgen form upon death.[41] The worgen curse persists through death into the afterlife, and worgen can return during the Day of the Dead and other cases as worgen ghosts. Worgen appear in the Shadowlands, such as Neena in Maldraxxus.

Worgen cannot become Forsaken,[40][43] but can become death knights.[44] The worgen curse makes raising them into undeath far more difficult than it is for normal humans. The worgen curse has roots in both the Emerald Dream (through the wolf Ancient, Goldrinn) and the holy power of the goddess Elune. In addition, those worgen who imbibe the waters of Tal'doren — during the Ritual of Balance[45] — have a further resistance to the corruption of undeath. Sylvanas' Val'kyr are less powerful than the Lich King and are unable to overcome this resistance and turn worgen into Forsaken, but the powers of the Lich King himself are sufficient enough to raise worgen as death knights.[44] Worgen death knights can shapeshift, such as Grant Lazarby. Forsaken can be cursed to appear as worgen, like Apothecary Berard.

Weaknesses

The  [Wolfsbane] plant is deadly to worgen,[46] a weakness that persists in either form.[47] It is known to grow in the Grizzly Hills and Gilneas, and can be found near trees and rocks in the forest.[48] In the Grizzly Hills, Grizzly Hills Trappers in Silverbrook claimed to be allergic to wolfsbane root and asked the Alliance to remove it for them, only to discover the trappers are actually Bloodmoon worgen.[47] In Gilneas, wolfsbane was gathered by the Forsaken,[48] and later made into oil and applied to weapons,[49] becoming deadly to worgen.[46]

Worgen are said to hate fire,[50] which can be used to get their attention,[51] and can be extremely effective when caught in their fur[15] and is a much more painful end than the sword.[34] Lord Godfrey used to burn the worgen when he killed them, to make sure that they were dead. Worgen do not fear fire, however, and can navigate through actively burning structures to rescue others.[24] Feral worgen use candles,[52][15] as well as campfires, bonfires, and torches, as seen in Brightwood Grove.

Psychology

Halford Ramsey driven by instinct.

Instinct

Worgen are driven by a predatory instinct in their veins.[4][24] Many tend to prefer more natural habitats,[53] and are natural predators with a propensity to hunt.[54] Their feral side will never truly be at rest.[4] As though it satisfies some deep primal urge, worgen tend to prefer running on all fours over using mounts like Azeroth's other races.[5] Worgen can smell blood, and are excited by it.[2][36]

Even among non-feral worgen, respect can be earned within their group by the number of prey hunted or by hunting an incredibly elusive or dangerous prey.[54] Alpha Prime describes being unable to hunt as excruciating torture for his kind.[4]

Emotion

Worgen must always control their emotions lest they lose themselves to their form's feral instincts. Rage and guilt are two known emotions that elicit a worgen's transformation. When a worgen is driven to anger, or concentrates with a force of will, the beast within will come forward.[4] Rage is natural to the worgen form.[24]

Worgen may begin to or even fully shift against their will when taunted, such as Genn Greymane[2][4][34][55] or Tobias Mistmantle.[56] Rage can cause one to take worgen form, such as Grandma Wahl.

Loss, despair, rage, and guilt can cause someone to remain in their worgen form, such as Darius Crowley who feared rejection from his daughter, Sven Yorgen who found his family butchered, or Lieutenant Thorn who saw her love sacrifice himself for her.

Intelligence

Worgen present varying levels of intelligence.

Most worgen are sentient and present various levels of intelligence depending on sanity and control. Both disciplined and feral worgen have been shown to communicate with words, growls, and howls as well as through nonverbal communication that is often imperceptible to humans,[35] while mindless worgen have been likened repeatedly to having intelligence akin to a wolf. Archmage Arugal had access to enchantments that allowed his favored worgen servants to retain a fair deal of their human intelligence as well. The source of these enchantments remains a mystery to this day, as Arugal took these secrets with him to his grave.[18]

Disciplined worgen are those that struggle to remain civilized, such as Genn Greymane, Tobias Mistmantle, and Halford Ramsey. Some self-disciplined worgen have rejoined the Alliance as powerful allies, prepared to fight to keep their humanity and their place in society.[31] The Gilnean worgen in the Alliance strive to control their feral nature and use the curse as a force to benefit the Alliance and reclaim their homeland.[22] Gilnean worgen can remain still when needed, although there is an evident urge to run, to hunt.[22] Genn Greymane hunts on all fours, accompanied by other worgen members of surviving Gilnean nobility.[28] A well-disciplined worgen may display the same amount of intelligence they had prior to becoming a worgen.

A feral worgen den.

Feral worgen are those who embrace the curse and live in the wild full time, such as Alpha Prime and Ivar Bloodfang, and including the Bloodfang, Nightbane, and Terrowulf packs. Feral worgen attacked Gilneas under orders from Alpha Prime,[34] including the Bloodfang pack.[57] Despite living in the wild, feral worgen are capable of speech, magic,[7] diplomacy and ultimately reasoning despite holding some otherwise primal tendencies. Nightbane worgen steal reading material. The feral worgen of Silverpine and Duskwood are members of the Wolf Cult.[52][15]

Mindless worgen are those entirely overcome by the curse, such as Sven Yorgen, Mardigan, and some Gilneans. The rage and instinct of the worgen curse is so strong that, sometimes, reason is lost.[2] The curse's effects on the mind are capable of completely destroying the person that a worgen once was. The condition itself cannot be lifted, but sanity can be restored to those not too far gone.[58] Some worgen go through stages of a mindless state, eventually losing their last vestiges of their former lives, a process that can be irreversible.[59] If panicked, distraught, or enraged, worgen may be vulnerable to the mindless state.

Treatments

Main article: Worgen Curse#Treatments

One way worgen can temporarily keep their sanity is by injecting themselves with a serum created by Gilnean chemist, Krennan Aranas. Another method is undertaking the Ritual of Balance, a night elven ritual that makes peace with traumatic events, thus bringing the worgen balance between the human and wolf sides. This ritual involves eating a piece of  [Moonleaf] (to help the mind prepare for the ritual) and drinking holy water from moon wells that recalls traumatic and peaceful events so that a person may gain understanding and balance of one's self.[54]

Culture

Worgen warrior

Faith

Worgen are naturally drawn to and revere the wolf Ancient, Goldrinn,[54][60][61] who in a way, is the progenitor of their race. Some worgen, having had a natural connection to nature, have also taken up druidism. Typically, those whose minds have been brought back from wildness will continue to revere the same concepts they did prior to their turning into a worgen (such as the Gilneans, many of whom still believe in the Light).[62] It is seen though that some of those who have been turned also embrace and revere the nature-related spirits that resulted in their current status, such as Genn Greymane and his newly found reverence for Goldrinn.

Magic

Some of the worgen described by Ur were skilled in the mystic arts. According to Ur, "their magic is of darkness and corruption", and curses and supernatural poisons are common.[7] In Duskwood, the Shadow Weavers of the Nightbane pack conjure foul shadows to tear their enemies apart from a distance.[63]

Harvest witches who contracted the worgen curse (which was druidic in origin) found that their powers were somewhat amplified, and after making first contact with the night elves cursed harvest witches were offered induction into the Cenarion Circle for both study and training as druids.[18]

The worgen curse does more than heighten physical senses, and worgen can see things that no normal human can, such as auras.[28]

Naming conventions

Once turned into a worgen, many keep their human or elven names from before. Examples include Genn Greymane, Darius Crowley, Gabriel Bybee, Sabrina Pilgrim, Clifford, Eric Davidson, Desmond, Phin Odelic, Ducal, Ian Duran, Eadrik, Ed, Fiona, Mardigan, Grant Lazarby, and more.

Some keep their given name, but have surnames with lupine themes. Examples include Bloodfang, Bloodhowl, Darkhowl, Fangborne, Growlblade, Iceclaw, Nighthowler, Moonstalker, Moonheart, Shadeclaw, Silenthowl, and more. Once he turns, Lord Geoffery Tulvan is known as Lord Geoffery Wildwolf.

Once turned into a worgen, some take a new name altogether. Examples include Alpha Prime, Blackmange, Bloodeyes, Eviscerator, Gorfang, Gutspill, Nightfang, Ripsnarl, Razorclaw, and more.

A worgen pack on the hunt

Groups and packs

Alliance Alliance
Neutral Independent
Defunct/Eliminated

Notable

Genn Greymane, King of Gilneas.
Name Role Affiliation Status Location
Neutral   Ralaar Fangfire The first worgen; Alpha Prime of the Druids of the Scythe and Wolf Cult Druids of the Scythe, Wolf Cult Deceased Unknown
Alliance   Genn Greymane King of Gilneas Kingdom of Gilneas, Alliance Alive Various Locations
Alliance   Darius Crowley Leader of the Gilneas Liberation Front, former rebel Kingdom of Gilneas, Gilneas Liberation Front, Alliance Alive Various Locations
Alliance   Tobias Mistmantle Gilnean war hero and brother of Stalvan Mistmantle Kingdom of Gilneas Alive Various Locations
Alliance  Ivar Bloodfang Leader of the Bloodfang pack Bloodfang pack, Kingdom of Gilneas Alive Various Locations
Alliance  Denmother Ulrica Leader of a worgen pack in Felwood Kingdom of Gilneas, Alliance Alive Talonbranch Glade, Felwood
Boss   Admiral Ripsnarl Defias admiral Defias Brotherhood Killable Ironclad Cove, Deadmines
Mob  Marl Wormthorn Corrupted druid loyal to the Burning Legion; creator of Maldraz and the Tainted Forest Burning Legion Killable Tainted Forest, Blasted Lands
Mob   Apothecary Berard The only known Forsaken to have been affected by the worgen curse; possibly the same person as Berard the Moon-Crazed Wolfcult, Independent Removed Pyrewood Village, Silverpine Forest
Boss  Big Bad Wolf Karazhan opera event boss Independent Killable Opera Hall, Karazhan
Boss  Eviscerator Prisoner and gladiator Independent Killable Ring of the Law, Blackrock Depths
Mob   Garwal Alpha worg of Rivenwood, hiding in worg form Wolfcult, Scourge Killable Rivenwood, Howling Fjord
Mob  Selas Lieutenant of Archmage Arugal Wolfcult, Scourge Killable Bloodmoon Isle, Grizzly Hills
Boss  Jes Howlis Prisoner Tol Dagor prison gang Killable Tol Dagor

Hunter pet

Garwal was a tamable pet during 3.1 until a hotfix was deployed on 7 July, shortly after the discovery was widely known on the internet. During this time, the tamed Garwal pets were no longer an effective pet as they were stripped of their abilities and could not even be fed.

Community Manager Blizzard Entertainment Zarhym responded on the forums shortly after the hotfix with this statement:

Re: Worgen pet. | 2009-07-07 22:49 | Blizzard Entertainment Zarhym

The worgen should not technically belong to any of the pet families and was therefore removed. This means the pet no longer has access to pet talents or abilities. Whether or not similar circumstances with hunter pets in the past have occurred isn't really relevant. Given the nature of the creature that was tamed in this case, we feel it should not belong to any of the eligible pet families from which a hunter can choose his or her combat companion.

...We don't want hunters to have worgens as pets. That is the reason whether you find it reasonable or not.

View original post

On 21 July, the Garwal skin (appearance) was changed to a normal white worg for all players who had tamed him, and normal pet abilities were restored for those players.

In the RPG

Icon-RPG.png This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.
A worgen in Lands of Conflict.

Resembling a cross between human and dire wolf, the hunched over creature is roughly humanoid. Its body is covered in coarse, grayish-black fur with twitching claws and snarling teeth. The creature's eyes are mottled yellow in color, unblinking and devoid of any discernible emotion other than hunger.[65]

The worgen are thoroughly evil, delighting in torturing and devouring intelligent creatures. They enjoy hearing the screams of their victims as they tear them apart piece by piece. Worgen never show mercy or remorse. They may seem savage, but they are fairly intelligent and possess a cruel bestial cunning that can come as a surprise to the unprepared. Worgen society is patriarchal, with the eldest male leading the pack. Worgen never challenge leadership; the patriarch leads until he is physically incapable of doing so any longer, at which point his younger kin devour him. The worgen see this not as cruelty, but a great honor — they consume the bodies of their fallen unlike that of their victim's bodies. They believe the flesh and blood of their own kind improves their strength and cunning. Worgen look like humanoid wolves. They dwell in simple huts and usually wear cured leather scraps as rudimentary armor. Worgen do not use weapons, preferring to tear foes apart with their claws. They stand 6 feet tall, except when loping along on all fours, and weigh around 250 pounds. They speak their own language, made up of a variety of growls, barks, and howls.[66]

Most worgen keep their wolf-like forms at all times, but experiments by the mage Arugal have resulted in human/worgen "hybrids" who only appear as worgen under the light of the moon. They carry with them a dark, corrupting malaise that grows wherever they infest, making the surrounding area dark and gloomy. Fiercely territorial creatures, they rarely stray from the general vicinity of the place in which they first appeared. Fearless beasts, they brazenly prowl near both villages and monster lairs. Although worgen display an apparent fondness for nighttime and its darkness, they can perform equally well in the daytime.[65]

Pure killing beasts, worgen tend to attack any creatures that they encounter, regardless of whether animal, humanoid, Scourge or something even more fearsome. Strangely, however, worgen refuse to feed on the remains of their victims, preferring to shred and tear the corpses and then to return immediately to prowling. Rumors suggest that worgen somehow receive sustenance continually from their native dimension... as well as guidance from a distant force.[65] Worgen are usually encountered in small packs near sites of recent intense magical activity.[65] A pack may contain four to twelve individuals.[66] A worgen tribe may contain between twenty and two hundred individuals.[65] The reason for the worgen refusing to devour most of their victims may be some lingering vestige of sanity in the worgen's minds.

Combat

Worgen prefer to hide in shadows before leaping great distances upon their foes. They attack with feral tenacity, slashing with their deadly claws and biting with sharp, infectious fangs. Worgen are nearly fearless and typically fight to the death, relying on their regeneration to save them.[65] Worgen love nothing more than to pounce on an opponent and tear him to ribbons. If a foe is helpless, the worgen delivers a coup de grace before moving on to another target, unless the fight is well in hand. Then it turns to torture (or "playtime") — and the unfortunate victim is almost certain to wish he had died.[66] The saliva of a worgen carries a dangerous infection that can prove deadly against those who are bitten.[65]

Notes and trivia

Inspiration

The worgen bear a strong resemblance to the "Myrkridia" from Bungie's Myth II: Soulblighter (a contemporary of Starcraft), especially the idea of them being from another dimension. Besides that, the worgen obviously resemble a werewolf as it is known in popular fiction, particularly the part where they managed to get the curse under control and only changed when the moon was up.

Gallery

Art

Other

See also

References

 
  1. ^ a b Loreology “On average? Females about 8’, and the same for males (when hunched over)."
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Curse of the Worgen Issue 3
  3. ^ a b c d e f Curse of the Worgen, epilogue
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Curse of the Worgen Issue 5
  5. ^ a b c Blizzard Entertainment Blizzard Entertainment. Game Guide: Worgen. Archived from the original on 2012-06-01.
  6. ^ a b c Curse of the Worgen Issue 1
  7. ^ a b c d e f g  [The Book of Ur]
  8. ^ a b c d World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3
  9. ^ a b Curse of the Worgen Issue 2
  10. ^ WoW -> Info -> Basics -> World Dungeons (Shadowfang Keep) (Retrieved 08-27-2010)
  11. ^ a b  [Velinde's Journal]
  12. ^ A [30] The Scythe of Elune
  13. ^  [Jitters' Completed Journal]
  14. ^ A Mage [28] Ur's Treatise on Shadow Magic
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Dark Riders
  16. ^ N [75G3] Hour of the Worg (And quest chain)
  17. ^ N Death Knight [55] A Special Surprise
  18. ^ a b c Ask CDev - Answers Round 3
  19. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [5] Last Chance at Humanity
  20. ^ http://www.worldofraids.com/topic/17055-cataclysm-hands-on-worgen-starting-experience/
  21. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [120] Bane of the Nightbane
  22. ^ a b c d Wolfheart, ch. 14
  23. ^ Wolfheart, ch. 5
  24. ^ a b c d e f g Lord of His Pack, pg. 4
  25. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [11] The Hunt For Sylvanas
  26. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [9] Take Back What's Ours
  27. ^ Shadowfang Keep
  28. ^ a b c d e f g h Wolfheart, ch. 18
  29. ^ a b Wolfheart, ch. 16
  30. ^ a b Before the Storm, ch. 5
  31. ^ a b https://worldofwarcraft.com/en-us/game/races/worgen
  32. ^ A [32] Marching On Our Stomachs
  33. ^ A [32] Lion's Pride
  34. ^ a b c d e f Curse of the Worgen Issue 4
  35. ^ a b c d Wolfheart, ch. 22
  36. ^ a b Stella Darkpaw
  37. ^ Admiral Ripsnarl
  38. ^ N Mining [110] Infernal Brimstone Theory
  39. ^ Ask CDev - Answers Round 4
  40. ^ a b H [13] No Escape
  41. ^ a b H [18] A Wolf in Bear's Clothing
  42. ^ Wolfheart, ch. 23
  43. ^ H [20] Cities in Dust
  44. ^ a b Ask CDev
  45. ^ Ultimate Visual Guide, pg. 102
  46. ^ a b http://www.wowhead.com/spell=85003/wolfsbane-oil
  47. ^ a b A [74] Wolfsbane Root
  48. ^ a b H [14] In Time, All Will Be Revealed
  49. ^ H [16] A Man Named Godfrey
  50. ^ A [74] Escape from Silverbrook
  51. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [5] Sacrifices
  52. ^ a b Curse of the Worgen
  53. ^ A [21D] Fury of the Pack
  54. ^ a b c d Wolfheart
  55. ^ Wolfheart, ch. 11
  56. ^ A [23] Mistmantle's Revenge
  57. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [3] While You're At It
  58. ^ A [24] The Yorgen Worgen
  59. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif [5] Among Humans Again
  60. ^ A [81] Goldrinn's Ferocity
  61. ^ A [30] Brood of Seldarria
  62. ^ A IconSmall Worgen Male.gifIconSmall Worgen Female.gif Priest [2] Learning the Word
  63. ^ A [23] The Rotting Orchard
  64. ^ N Druid [98 - 110] Disturbing the Past
  65. ^ a b c d e f g Lands of Conflict, pg. 195
  66. ^ a b c Monster Guide, pg. 146