- "Arathi" redirects here. For the human tribe, see Arathi tribe. For the battleground, see Arathi Basin. For the Arathi Highlands warfront, see Battle for Stromgarde.
- For the lore of the zone and its status before the Cataclysm, see Arathi Highlands (Classic).
Battle Pet Level: 7 - 8
Stromgarde Keep |
Galen Trollbane †|
Lord Falconcrest †
Dabyrie's Farmstead |
Refuge Pointe |
Galen's Fall (abandoned)
|Affiliation||League of Arathor, Stromgarde, Alliance, Defilers, Forsaken, Horde, Witherbark tribe, Boulderfist clan, Drywhisker, Ragebeak wildkin|
|PvP status||Contested territory|
The Arathi Highlands (pronounced Ah-RATH-ee, also known as Arathor, or simply Arathi, and the Highlands) are a region located in southeastern Lordaeron: east of Hillsbrad Foothills and south of the Hinterlands. Traditionally, it has served as home to the humans of Arathor, who gave the region its name, and later was the home of the Kingdom of Stromgarde. The region can be described as the cradle of humankind. The once-mighty crimson-clad kingdom has fallen on hard times after the death of its king, Thoras Trollbane. Under his son, Galen Trollbane, the Kingdom was unable to resist the might of its many foes. The city, Stromgarde Keep was assailed by a combined force of Syndicate, vengeful alteraci who sought to lay low the kingdom, the native Witherbark tribe of forest trolls that dot the forest to the east, and the Boulderfist ogres, whose hovels dot the east and central regions of the area.
The main hubs of activity became Refuge Pointe and Hammerfall, which functioned as bases for Alliance and Horde respectively. The city of Stromgarde, located in the southwest, fell into disrepair following the Third War, with Galen Trollbane holding but a single section of the city. To the south lies the Thandol Span, a massive dwarven construction that bridges the canal between Lordaeron and Khaz Modan, connecting the Highlands with the dwarven Wetlands.
Prince Trollbane once led the human defenders, until he was slain by the Forsaken seeking Trol'kalar, later being resurrected to undeath. In the end, he betrayed his new allies reclaiming Stromgarde Keep, but was ultimately killed when he tried to deceive the death knights of the Ebon Blade; during which it was revealed the prince had murdered his own father, thus robbing the kingdom of its mighty leader. During the Fourth War, the Alliance and Horde returned to prominence in the region to fight the Battle for Stromgarde, each controlling the strongholds of Stromgarde Keep and Ar'gorok respectively. The battle ultimately ended in the Alliance's favor, with Stromgarde victorious, leaving Danath Trollbane as the new leader of the kingdom.
- 1 History
- 2 Getting there
- 3 Geography
- 4 Notable characters
- 5 Quests
- 6 Toys and loot
- 7 Resources
- 8 Wild creatures
- 9 In Warcraft III
- 10 In the RPG
- 11 Notes and trivia
- 12 Speculation
- 13 Gallery
- 14 Patch changes
- 15 References
- 16 External links
“War rages in these lands, repeating patterns set down long ago. The ways of time are ever cyclical. Apologies, I sometimes forget that your people are so...linear. This land is rich with history. I really must show you what it was like when the Empire of Arathor stood at its zenith.”
- — Zidormi
The Arathi Highlands were once the cradle of human civilization, as it marks the place where the Empire of Arathor was founded and where the first real contact between elves and humans was made, during the Troll Wars. From the great city of Strom, the Human Empire controlled nearly all of the eastern lands. After the Empire's collapse, the city of Strom was largely abandoned save for a contingent of warriors. These guardsmen founded a new martial kingdom known as Stromgarde, establishing their capital in the old city of Strom. Over time, they also built a village (later known as Hammerfall) further to the east.
Second War and aftermath
During the Second War the forces of Stromgarde ruled by Thoras Trollbane, were an instrumental part of the Alliance's ground forces, spreading the troops between the main Alliance army and the ones guarding Stromgarde. Thoras later ordered any remaining soldiers to come into Alterac Mountains to deal with the treacherous king Aiden Perenolde.
The Arathi Highlands and Stromgarde itself were overrun by the Horde. Horde's southern offensive in the dwarven lands of Khaz Modan was initially successful, but after a series of savage battles, Alliance forces pushed the Horde back to the bridges of the Thandol Span. From there, the Alliance armies advanced south, forcing the Horde to retreat from Khaz Modan.
Following the Second War, the former village that was to become Hammerfall was converted into an internment camp to hold the hated orcs. Years later, Thrall and Orgrim Doomhammer led a small army into the Highlands and attacked Hammerfall in order to free the captive orcs.
At the beginning of the Third War, Thrall and his retinue of orcs were in the Highlands. Warned by a prophet, they gathered their ranks and marched to the Hillsbrad Foothills, fighting wild ogres and forest trolls on the way.
World of Warcraft
The Kingdom of Stromgarde managed to prevent the Plague of Undeath from ravaging Arathi, but was soon afterwards overrun by the Syndicate and the Boulderfist ogres. The remnant of the Stromgarde army was forced to flee the then recently occupied Stromgarde Keep and take refuge in a small canyon to the north, in what is now known as Refuge Pointe. Now, four years after the Third War, the area has become a battle zone between many different factions. The Alliance fights to aide the former nation of Stromgarde in recapturing its capital and reestablishing control over the region. The Horde, now in control of the internment camp that once held them prisoner (naming it Hammerfall in honor of the fallen warchief Orgrim Doomhammer), is attempting to establish a forward base to protect its new allies against Alliance attack. The Syndicate is also in the area, trying to claim yet another territory for its jealous nobles. Finally, the ogres and forest trolls in the region are trying to drive out all others and establish a permanent settlement for themselves.
Before the Cataclysm, the Forsaken Courier could be seen roaming from the Go'Shek Farm in the highlands to Tarren Mill in the Hillsbrad Foothills. She was usually escorted by four Forsaken Bodyguards. Lieutenant Valorcall and his Stromgarde cavalrymen also patrolled the region.
Unlike its neighboring regions of Hillsbrad Foothills and the Wetlands, the Highlands were spared during the Cataclysm. Very little has changed. The Horde, flush from victory within Hillsbrad, have pushed slightly into the Highlands and have established a camp near the border. On the Alliance side, the dwarves have burrowed a deep pass through the mountains north into the Hinterlands, and now a clear path runs from behind Stromgarde Keep to Faldir's Cove. The dark iron dwarves have abandoned their camp near Thandol Span, retreating within the structure, and now the camp is home to a friendly Dark Iron Entrepreneur. The vile Forsaken, fresh from their conquest of Hillsbrad, now seek to seize control of Arathi as well, aided by the fallen prince of Stromgarde, Galen himself.
During it is shown that Galen Trollbane and his undead forces has seceded from the Forsaken and taken control of Stromgarde from the Syndicate and the ogres except for areas occupied by Witherbark forest trolls. Both forces would eventually be decimated by the Knights of the Ebon Blade plunging the capital and the entire region into uncertainty.
Before the Storm
The Gathering took place on the western side of the Highlands, halfway between Stromgarde Keep and Thoradin's Wall. However, the Gathering ended in tragedy. Calia Menethil had incited the Forsaken participants of the event to defect to the Alliance, which elicited Warchief Sylvanas Windrunner's slaughter of all the Forsaken participants and Calia to curb any sedition to her authority. While the Alliance buried the Forsaken that were killed at the Gathering at an Arathi graveyard, Sylvanas has used the failed reunion to further alienate the Forsaken from their human counterparts.
Battle for Azeroth
- Main article: Battle for Stromgarde
The western region of Arathi Highlands becomes a warfront between the Alliance and Horde as they fight over Stromgarde. The Horde built a new base, Ar'gorok, north of Stromgarde at the former location of Northfold Manor. Meanwhile, the Alliance renovated Stromgarde Keep to serve as their base of operations.
The battle ultimately ended in the Alliance's favor, with Stromgarde victorious, thanks to the leadership qualities of Muradin Bronzebeard, Danath Trollbane, Turalyon, and the tenacity of all the soldiers who fought. This victory apparently left the Horde stronghold of Ar'gorok in ruins, and the various settlements of the kingdom in the hands of the Alliance once more.
Following the Alliance victory, the soldiers returned home, leaving only a few behind as a precaution. When Mathias Shaw presented himself to Stromgarde during his mission for King Anduin Wrynn, Danath blessed him to inspect the Sanctum and the Crypt.
After the Fourth War, Danath's outriders spotted an armed and cloaked woman traveling with a group of Horde refugees throughout the Arathi Highlands, and the new King of Stromgarde subsequently informed his old friend Alleria Windrunner, as she and Turalyon were riding through the region searching for the whereabouts of her sister Sylvanas Windrunner.
- From Tarren Mill in the Hillsbrad Foothills, run eastwards across the river and catch up with the main road. Follow the main road eastward until you go through Thoradin's Wall. Continue following the path for a considerable time, until you see a signed turnoff to the north to Hammerfall. Take that turn off and continue running until you get to Hammerfall.
- From Ironforge run east towards Loch Modan take the road in the Loch north through Dun Algaz pass and into the Wetlands. Follow the road as it runs north, northeast, then west. When the road splits and heads north follow it north. You'll pass the ruined bridge Thandol Span and you'll be in the highlands.
To the west is Thoradin's Wall, now collapsed and gaping wide. Southeast is the Thandol Span, which bridges the gap between Lordaeron and Khaz Modan. Mountains to the east prevent easy access to the sea. Its trees are pine.
The Arathi Highlands are an area of grassy land in southeastern Lordaeron. Notable features include the great circles of binding, which are protected by elementals and used to keep some unknown entity imprisoned. The region lies just north of the huge canyon running between the highlands and the Wetlands to the south, which can only be crossed by the Thandol Span. The area is home to the ruins of Stromgarde Keep, which has been overrun by ogres and the Syndicate. The wildlife of the highlands includes giant spiders, carrion birds, and raptors.
There is also a dwarven farm on the southeast coast of the zone, though the location is shown as The Forbidding Sea on the minimap while there. It can only be accessed either by flying mount or by swimming from the Hinterlands or the Wetlands. While there are two Alliance-tagged dwarven farmers and some various critters there--as well as two grain fields, dwarven stables, and a small hovel carved into the side of the mountain--the farm appears to serve no purpose other than as a geographical curiosity.
There are no instanced dungeons in the Arathi Highlands, though the ruins of Stromgarde Keep are one of the most well known micro dungeons in the game, and the Tower of Arathor micro dungeon can also be found here. The entrance to the Arathi Basin battleground can also be found in this zone.
Maps and subregions
- Arathi Basin: Both Horde and Alliance entrances to Arathi Basin can be found in this zone.
- Ironforge, Dun Morogh
- Thelsamar, Loch Modan
- Menethil Harbor, Wetlands
- Dun Modr, Wetlands
- Aerie Peak, Hinterlands
- Stormfeather Outpost, Hinterlands
Flight paths from Galen's Fall
Flight paths from Hammerfall
- Undercity, Tirisfal Glades
- Tarren Mill, Hillsbrad Foothills
- Galen's Fall, Arathi Highlands
- Revantusk Village, Hinterlands
- Hiri'watha Research Station, Hinterlands
- New Kargath, Badlands
- Dragonmaw Port, Twilight Highlands
- Vermillion Redoubt, Twilight Highlands
|Zone name||Faction||Level range||Direction||Access|
|Wetlands||20 - 60||South||By foot, or Refuge Pointe to Dun Modr, Menethil Harbor, Whelgar's Retreat or Greenwarden's Groveflightpath from|
|Hillsbrad Foothills||15 - 60||West||By foot, or Hammerfall to Tarren Millflightpath from|
|The Hinterlands||30 - 60||North||By foot through tunnelor by flight paths.|
- Main article: Arathi Highlands NPCs
The Arathi Highlands are home to several characters of note. At Refuge Pointe, Skuerto seeks aid in the battle against the Boulderfist ogres. In Hammerfall, Tor'gan attempts to raise the spirits of those who still reel from the loss of Warchief Orgrim Doomhammer. And in Faldir's Cove, Captain Steelgut and his trusted crew seek an end to their prime threat - naga.
- Main article: Arathi Highlands storyline
Toys and loot
Added in Battle for Azeroth and tuned for level 120 players in the Warfront phase, a large number of rare creatures (many of which have existed in the game since Classic) drop mounts, pets, and toys. Rares can only be looted once per Alliance/Horde capture cycle.
|Knight-Captain Aldrin (Horde)||Mount|
|Doomrider Helgrim (Alliance)||Mount|
|Nimar the Slayer||Mount|
|Branchlord Aldrus||Battle pet|
|Darbel Montrose||Voidwiggler||Battle pet|
|Echo of Myzrael||Battle pet|
|Man-Hunter Rog||Squawkling||Battle pet|
|Horrific Apparition (Alliance)||Toy|
|Horrific Apparition (Horde)||Toy|
|Molok the Crusher||Toy|
|Doom's Howl (World boss)||Toy|
|The Lion's Roar (World boss)||Toy|
In Warcraft III
The multiplayer map called Wizard's Retreat is said to be located in the Arathi Foothills.
In the RPG
The Arathi Highlands, the southernmost realm in Lordaeron, are crushed and the people scattered. Three factions battle to control the few settlements that remain in this forsaken land. A small Horde outpost, Hammerfall, provides some sanity. The Syndicate has a large presence here, as do the Boulderfist ogres. The Highlands' native people are led by Prince Galen Trollbane, the rightful heir to Stromgarde's throne and leader of the city's embattled defenders. All three factions are poor and ragged, and would be easy prey for the Scourge.
Stromgarde's warriors, including Grizzled Jopp, fought valiantly in the Second War, and the orc Warchief Orgrim Doomhammer met his end on Arathi soil during the liberation of the orcs from the internment camps. During the Third War, Scourge forces devastated the nearby Wetlands to the south, indicating that they had attacked and infested Arathi as well. Many of Stromgarde's men and women traveled with Jaina Proudmoore to Kalimdor, leaving a tiny band behind. Prince Galen Trollbane is hard-pressed to hold his city against his enemies. Stromgarde's defenders, the Syndicate and the Boulderfist ogres all seek mercenaries to help in their struggles.
A Syndicate band ambushed a lone wagon, but luckily the driver managed to escape, though the brigands stole the cargo. In it, they found a mysterious black crystal ball which was cursed and transformed those within its radius of effect into bloodthirsty maniacs. The wagon's driver was in reality a disguised eredar warlock, and the theft and transformation were parts of his plan to upset things in the southern lands so the Legion could gain a foothold. Terrified villagers asked the heroes to slay the raving Syndicate band while the eredar warlock tried to intervene and stop them.
The Arathi Highlands, are immediately north of Khaz Modan's Wetlands and south of the Hinterlands and the Hillsbrad Foothills. Its climate is similar to that of the Wetlands to the south, though its higher elevation keeps it free of the bogs and marshy pools that would otherwise form the constant rain, but otherwise the geography is similar. The air is cool and the skies are unvarying gray. The Highlands are bleak and dismal.
To the north is Thoradin's Wall, now collapsed and gaping wide. South is the Thandol Span, which bridges the gap between Lordaeron and Khaz Modan. Mountains to the east prevent easy access to the sea, and the Highlands' western coast is bleak, windswept and cold. Ancient ruins are scattered across the land. Bloodstone ore is found in the deepest mines within the Arathi Highlands.
Notes and trivia
- To what extend the Horde managed to attack the Arathi Highlands during the Second War in the current canon is unclear as the attack on Stromgarde hasn't been mentioned outside Warcraft II in any other account.
- The kingdom of Stromgarde was once described as being situated amongst the foothills of the Alterac Mountains.
- The Arathi Highlands were one of the locations featured in the South Park Make Love, Not Warcraft episode.
- The Grimscale naga were planned to appear in Arathi.
The eastern-most areas of the Hillsbrad Foothills (including Durnholde Keep and an Alliance naval base) may be considered part of the Arathi Highlands, as Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos indicates that Thrall's camp in a forested area west of Durnholde and east of a river (presumably the one east of Southshore in World of Warcraft) is within Arathi. The Highlands may, as a region, run up to this river, although due to Durnholde's inclusion Stromgarde's domain is likely still bounded by Thoradin's Wall.
Unnamed dwarven bunker in the Highlands' eastern coast.
- Patch 8.0.1 (2018-07-17): Updated version of the zone available through Battle for Azeroth content.
- Patch 7.3.5 (2018-01-16): Level scaling implemented, previous zone level: 25 - 30.
- Patch 4.0.3a (2010-11-23): Zone updated.
- ^ http://blue.cardplace.com/cache/wow-general/3813779.htm
- ^ Salanar the Horseman (quest)#Notes
- ^ Foulfeather
- ^ a b World of Warcraft: Exploring Azeroth: The Eastern Kingdoms, pg. 66
- ^ BlizzCon 2019: Q&A panel
- ^ Tides of Darkness, chapter 16
- ^ To Ravenholdt#Notes
- ^ The Fall of Stromgarde (WC2 Orc)
- ^ Ultimate Visual Guide, pg. 45
- ^ Lord of the Clans
- ^ Chasing Visions (WC3 demo)
- ^ Before the Storm, chapter 29
- ^ BlizzCon 2019: Q&A panel
- ^ World of Warcraft: Exploring Azeroth: The Eastern Kingdoms, pg. 68
- ^ Shadows Rising
- ^ Before the Storm, chapter 28
- ^ a b "Exodus of the Horde: Chasing Visions", Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos. Blizzard Entertainment.
- ^ a b c Lands of Conflict, pg. 88
- ^ a b Lands of Conflict, pg. 89
- ^ Lands of Conflict, pg. 80
- ^ Lands of Conflict, pg. 90
- ^ More Magic & Mayhem, pg. 153
- ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness manual, Nations of the Alliance, Stromgarde
- ^ File:Warcraft 3 Loading screen Arathi Highlands.jpg