Naga Warbringers.jpg
Faction/Affiliation Nazjatar Empire, Illidan's Naga (Illidari), Old Gods' forces, Burning Legion, Independent
Character classes

WoW Icon update.png Assassin, Brute, Mage, Myrmidon, Priest, Royal Guard, Scout, Sea witch, Siren, Sorcerer, Warrior
Hearthstone Archer, Pirate

Icon-RPG.png Naga anomaly, Wizard, Shaman
Racial capital Nazjatar
Fel Hammer
  Formerly Coilfang Reservoir
Racial leader(s)  Queen Azshara (Nazjatar)
 Lady S'theno (Illidari)
  Formerly  Lady Vashj † (Illidari)
Homeworld Azeroth
Language(s) Nazja, Common
Organization(s) Tribes[1]

The serpentine naga (sometimes pluralized as nagas)[2][3] are some of the most formidable villains of Azeroth. Masters of sorcery, the naga were formerly Highborne night elves, members of Queen Azshara's court in the War of the Ancients. They were transformed into naga by the Old Gods, more specifically N'Zoth, and now haunt the seas of Azeroth building a great civilization on the ocean floor.[4]

They have since stayed out of major world affairs for over 10,000 years, but more recently, they have been rising up to the surface for nefarious purposes, in service of their queen. They notably answered the call of Illidan Stormrage after the Battle of Mount Hyjal and sent an expedition led by Lady Vashj to ally with the Illidari.


Birth of the naga

Over 10,000 years ago, Ancient Kalimdor was the domain of the large Kaldorei Empire led by Queen Azshara. She ruled from the capital city of Zin-Azshari with her loyal followers known as the Highborne who were the highest-ranking caste of night elf nobility. These privileged nobles became obsessed with the Well of Eternity and abused its arcane magics until their activities caught the attention of Sargeras, the dark titan. He promised the Highborne that he would remake the planet Azeroth into a paradise, and that they would be rewarded with great power for serving him. At Sargeras' command, the Highborne created a portal in the Well in the hope that Sargeras would be able to enter Azeroth himself. The Highborne's efforts brought about the first invasion of the Burning Legion, but the ensuing War of the Ancients seemed to do the opposite of what Sargeras had promised. Demons poured from the queen's jeweled palace and laid waste to most of the city. Death and devastation followed the demonic army as it spread outward. The other night elves, together with many unlikely allies rallied in the Kaldorei Resistance, put up a surprising defense, and managed to close the portal. This added magical stress was too great for the Well of Eternity, which imploded with disastrous consequences. As if struck by a giant hammer, the Well was driven downwards by the impact and collapsed in on itself until it was finally obliterated, piercing the planet's molten core,[5] and creating the raging Maelstrom.

Night elf Queen Azshara with N'Zoth moments after the Great Sundering as shown in Warbringers.

During the destruction wrought by the Great Sundering, Queen Azshara and her Highborne loyalists were gathered at her palace in Zin-Azshari. As the waters swallowed them into fathomless depths of the Maelstrom,[6] Azshara's quick thinking saved them: she managed to make a pact with the Old God N'Zoth, swearing allegiance to it in order to survive.[7] As soon as she agreed, Azshara became the first naga - a cursed and irrevocably warped scaly, serptentine, water-breathing creature.[6] Her loyal servants transformed with her.[4] The naga hearts became as black as the deepest ocean trenches, and hate enveloped their thoughts.[8]

One of the most powerful among these twisted abominations was the queen's former handmaiden, Lady Vashj. Hidden from the world, Azshara, Vashj and her servants would quietly build the naga capital of Nazjatar and their new empire in the cold darkness at the bottom of the sea,[6] beneath the swirling waters of the Maelstrom. Azshara herself expanded with hate and rage, becoming a massive monstrosity, reflecting the wickedness and malice that had always hidden within her core. With patience and cunning, they expanded their dominion over the oceans.[9] They would rebuild their power and it would take over ten thousand years before the naga would reveal their existence to the surface world.[10]

Transformed into the monstrous naga, the former night elves found they were able to survive the ocean's depths. Even so, the naga knew they had little chance of reclaiming the lands that the Highborne had once dominated. Bitterly resentful at their enforced banishment to the sea, they resolved to bide their time until they could retake their rightful place in the surface world.[5][11]

After the end of the Second War, a group of dead naga was found by Korialstrasz in the Nexus.[12]

Third War

The naga resurfaced in the time around the Third War. One of the first sightings of naga took place when Warchief Thrall rescued the Darkspear trolls from a tribe of murlocs on a stormswept isle in the Great Sea. The murlocs worshiped a creature they called sea witch - Zar'jira.

Lady Vashj

Some time after the Third War, the demon lord Kil'jaeden contacted Illidan Stormrage, who was on Azeroth. Although Illidan had worked against the Legion's interests in the past, Kil'jaeden was willing to give Illidan another chance. If Illidan destroyed the Frozen Throne, Kil'jaeden promised to grant anything Illidan might desire. Accordingly, Illidan sought out new allies. He cast a powerful spell that reached the depths of the ocean, and a group of naga led by Lady Vashj responded, calling in some old Highborne debts.[13] One and all, they pledged themselves to Illidan. The naga did not come because of the history they shared with the former night elf, nor did they respect his demonic power. They came because the Old Gods willed it and they sent them to make sure his campaign against the Lich King succeeded so that it could spark a new war on Azeroth. If the former night elf became troublesome, they could simply command the naga to cut out his fel-corrupted heart.[8] Their first act of loyalty was to facilitate Illidan's escape from Azshara in Kalimdor, and bring him to the Broken Isles and the Tomb of Sargeras.

Lady Vashj bolstered her ranks with snap dragons and dragon turtles, and assisted Illidan with his mission on the Tomb of Sargeras on the Broken Isles. They later took control of the ruins of Dalaran in Lordaeron, so that Illidan could perform his ritual with to destroy the Frozen Throne with Eye of Sargeras, and were in consequence pursued by the Watchers led by Maiev Shadowsong.[14] At some point, they managed to capture surviving paladins of the Silver Hand whom they locked up in the prisons of the ruined city, among them was Magroth the Defender.[15]

Kael'thas Sunstrider, prince of the newly-dubbed blood elves, encountered Lady Vashj, who offered her help to battle the Scourge. Kael'thas agreed, but when the blood elves' human commander, Othmar Garithos, discovered this alliance, he denounced the blood elves. He believed naga were vile and inhuman, and the blood elves must also be treacherous for consorting with them. Garithos imprisoned Kael'thas and the rest of the blood elves and sentenced them to death. Before he could carry out this sentence, Lady Vashj helped them to escape. The two forces fought together and eventually joined Illidan in Outland.[16][17][18]

Another group of naga led by Lady Darkscale attacked Kul Tiras forces in Dustwallow Marsh and while many were killed the Darkscale took prisoners for an unknown reason. Soon afterward, Lady Darkscale, Scilla Murkshadow, and the rest of their naga forces were slain by the combined might of Jaina Proudmoore, Rexxar, Rokhan, and Chen Stormstout, who were trying to find any survivor of the attack in order to determine what human force was attacking Durotar.[19]

World of Warcraft

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

More recently naga have begun to reappear around the coasts of the world, creating settlements on land, most noticeably in the ruins of their old cities in the region of Azshara. It seems as though they are now followers of the Old Gods, as they have made alliances with the Twilight's Hammer cult and the corrupted satyrs. They have claimed several stretches of coast on both continents, for example in Darkshore, Ashenvale, Desolace, Feralas, Dustwallow Marsh, Azshara, Hillsbrad Foothills, Arathi Highlands and Stranglethorn Vale. They have significant numbers and pose a serious threat to anyone standing in their way.

The Burning Crusade

Bc icon.gif This section concerns content related to The Burning Crusade.

Coilfang Reservoir a naga-dominated compound that lurks under Zangarmarsh's deepest waters.

The Outland tribes of naga have begun draining the water of the Zangarmarsh lakes and marshes with steam pumps. The pumps are all connected through underground drains to Coilfang Reservoir, where Vashj and her underlings reside, turning Serpent Lake into a giant water sink for the rest of Zangarmarsh. Due to the Cenarion Expedition's meddling, the naga operating the steam vaults end up at war with the druids, at the orders of Lady Vashj.[20] The plan was to take control of all the waters of Outland, and through them, its people.[21][22] The sea witch was later killed and her forces defeated by adventurers on behalf of the Cenarion Expedition.

Naga attack at the coasts of the Azuremyst Isles.

Pearl of Pandaria

Comics title.png This section concerns content related to the Warcraft manga or comics.

A sea witch who looks like (though is not stated to be) Lady Naz'jar, ordered Zhahara Darksquall to find the continent of Pandaria, believing it holds the future of Azeroth. However, Zhahara herself was obsessed with finding the Wandering Isle and the Pearl of Pandaria. To aid her, Zhahara enlisted the help of Rahjak, Blokk, and Rumblefitz. Zhahara's machination to obtain the Pearl of Pandaria led her into conflict with Strongbo, Li Li Stormstout, and Chen Stormstout which ended in Zhahara's demise.[23]

Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath of the Lich King This section concerns content related to Wrath of the Lich King.

In the Borean Tundra, tribes of naga have made a fort in Northrend in Riplash Ruins. From here, the naga are making ominous attempts at melting the polar ice caps in order to flood the world and create an entirely underwater empire for their revered empress, Queen Azshara.[24] The naga plans in Northrend did not come to fruition, as the kvaldir have slaughtered most of them, feeding them to a mighty sea creature.[25]


Cataclysm This section concerns content related to Cataclysm.

Naga banners in Vashj'ir.

While the naga of Serpentshrine Cavern in Outland were loyal to Illidan through Lady Vashj, the naga in Cataclysm ultimately report directly to Queen Azshara herself. Queen Azshara appears in Darkshore as a sea witch (marking her first appearance in-game). Azshara's master N'Zoth commanded her to take the seas, both for revenge against Neptulon for defying him and so that they could splinter the world's nations into isolated enclaves by halting sea travel.[26] While exploring the Naz'jar Battlemaiden quests in Vashj'ir, the nature of Lady Vashj's mother and her former stronghold were discovered, and above all the naga executed their plan to usurp Neptulon's control of the Abyssal Maw. Neptulon was abducted by Ozumat following the events of the naga invasion, and this abduction leaves the Abyssal Maw leaderless and Azshara very well placed as one of the most potent forces in Azeroth's oceans and perhaps beyond.

Although Azshara uses a recycled model, the naga in Cataclysm did get some new models and skin colors.


Legion This section concerns content related to Legion.

Banner of the naga groups in the Broken Isles.

The remnants of Illidan's Naga are led by Lady S'theno aboard the Fel Hammer.

Queen Azshara has sent a force led by Tidemistress Athissa to Azsuna on the Broken Isles to retrieve the  [Tidestone of Golganneth]. Azshara herself appears before Prince Farondis when Farondis tries to save an adventurer captured by the naga and tries to convince him to kneel before her, but Farondis fights Azshara off. The naga at the Eye of Azshara summon a creature known as the Wrath of Azshara after retrieving the Tidestone of Golganneth.

Naga at Azuregale Bay in Suramar are enslaving vrykul with merciless ones.


The naga and sea giants at Felrage Strand on the Broken Shore are corrupted by fel and share their encampment with members of the Burning Legion while enslaving soldiers from the Armies of Legionfall.[27] Their leader Lady Ssathara made a pact with the demons and her followers went willingly, but unaware of the price they must pay.[28] Despite the apparent oddity of naga serving the demons when Azshara and N'Zoth are opposed to the Legion, there are different groups of naga with different motivations, just like humans.[29] Ssathara says that the demons provide greater power than Azshara can.[30]

More naga are present in the Tomb of Sargeras, led by Harjatan and Mistress Sassz'ine. They entered the tomb to secure the Tidestone of Golganneth from the adventurers, on Azshara's orders.[31]

Battle for Azeroth

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

Stub.png Please add any available information to this section.
The naga are attacking the coastlines of Zandalar and Kul Tiras. In Stormsong Valley they summon the Pride of Azshara to destroy a levee. In Nazmir they are draining Krag'wa's frog children to sate their magic addiction,[32] attacking Horde forces at Naz'agal, and gathering titan relics on the Sundered Span. In Zuldazar they seek an ancient power at Atal'Gral and Azerite at the Dreadpearl Shallows. In Vol'dun they are battling the tortollans in the north.

Following the Battle of Dazar'alor, the naga attack both the Alliance and Horde on shores across the Great Sea. After which both the Alliance and Horde investigate the Crucible of Storms. The naga also have Priscilla Ashvane on their side, teaching them how to craft powerful Azerite weapons.[33]

Nazjatar in a magical opening in the sea.

They drag prisoners to Nazjatar and the Alliance and Horde follow, when the sea parts by the use of the Tidestone of Golganneth, the local enemies of the naga ally with the Alliance and Horde. Queen Azshara serves as the final boss of the Eternal Palace raid in Nazjatar.


Naga are divided into castes, such as the warrior caste.[34][35]

Naga refer to land-dwelling races with various derogatory terms, including "landwalker",[36][37][38] "landling",[39] "warmblood",[40] and "softskin".[41][42]


Turtles are feared by the naga, who consider them bad luck and give them a wide berth on the shores of Azshara.[43]


The naga revere Queen Azshara as a demigod.[5] Skar'this the Heretic instead worships the naga's enemy, Neptulon, something which he was imprisoned for. The Bloodwash naga formerly worshipped Neptulon and lived in relative peace with the nearby Rockpool murlocs, but recently the Bloodwash turned their back on him, choosing only to worship Azshara. They have littered their settlements with likenesses of Azshara carved out of seastone.[44] They have also erected altars where they worship their god.[45]

Characteristics and abilities

Naga in the Burning Crusade cinematic.

In general, naga are scaled humanoids with the lower bodies of large serpents. Naga can breathe water or air, and some naga have recently emerged from the ocean's depths. Yet most naga have continued to dwell in the ocean's depths, beneath the site of the original Well of Eternity.[5]

As former Highborne, the naga's past abuse of the Well has not been without additional consequences. The Highborne were obsessed with the Well, and the naga have been exposed to the Well's residual magics for millennia. Consequently modern naga are addicted to magic.[5][46][32]

Naga tend to be long-lived, much like the night elves, blood elves, and high elves. Some naga have even gained immortality as part of their mutations. However, most immortal naga are women rather than men. Naga women are tall and slender, with fine scales and angular features, and often have at least four arms, though not all do.[7] For some reason naga women have proven better than naga men at maintaining pre-Sundering memories and personalities. As a result, naga women are intellectually and magically superior to their male counterparts, and naga society is matriarchal.[5] While males are more suited for melee combat, female naga are incredible sorcerers, commanding the power of water and ice at their fingertips.[47]

Bigger and physically stronger than naga women, naga men are relatively bestial in appearance. A male naga's head resembles that of a dragon, and he has a muscular humanoid torso. The scales that cover his body are larger and thicker than those that cover the body of a naga woman.[5]

As naga, they no longer much resembled elves of any sort. The females have some vague similarities remaining, mostly in their slimmer, upper torsos and their faces, which retained the long, narrow design of night elves. Their arms ended in long, taloned fingers. The males had degenerated even more than the females, their heads low and reptilian, with teeth that jutted out from both the top and bottom of the long maw like a crocodile. Their eyes were deep set and narrow, and their crests and fins, which jutted as sharply as spears in places, were of a darker gold and brown shade. Their torsos were less in contrast to their serpentine lower bodies, being also scaled and segmented. Even their arms, massive compared to most creatures their size, were covered so.[1]

Naga wield scimitars and tridents.[48]

It is often whispered in dark corners of naga hide — a material so fine, so exquisite to the touch that goblins of sophisticated taste will spend any amount of moolah to get their hands on some.[49] Their hides are described as being "rubbery" and somehow feeling artificial.[50] Naga can shed their skin.[51]

Naga biology includes an air bladder that helps with buoyancy while swimming.[52] These bladders are used as part of an old tonic by vrykul fishermen to move easily underwater.[53]

Naga lords like High Warlord Naj'entus have stony arms and shells fused to their skin. This may be resultant of their mutations, or they may be a different subspecies altogether.


Naga hatch from eggs, which are somewhat translucent, with a single embryo visible within.[54] Naga hatchlings[55][56] inherit the curse of the naga and appear as small naga.[57][58] Naga hatchlings like pool toys. Spawning grounds such as the Vashj'elan Spawning Pool and the Hatchery in the Eternal Palace are heavily protected.



A statue of Queen Azshara in Nazjatar.

Name Role Affiliation Status Location
Neutral   Queen Azshara Queen of the naga, ruler of Nazjatar Nazjatar Empire Alive Eternal Palace, Nazjatar
Neutral   Lady Vashj Leader of Illidan's Naga, Coilfang Matron Illidari Deceased-Killable Serpentshrine Cavern
Mob  Lady Naz'jar Leader of the naga assault on the Abyssal Maw Naz'jar (Nazjatar Empire) Deceased-Killable Various Locations
Neutral  Tidemistress Athissa Leader of the naga assault on Azsuna Hatecoil (Nazjatar Empire) Deceased-Killable Azsuna
Boss  High Warlord Naj'entus Protector of the Black Temple Illidan's Naga (Illidari) Deceased-Killable Karabor Sewers, Black Temple
Neutral  Lady S'theno Coilskar captain Coilskar tribe (Illidari) Alive Illidari Foothold, Mardum
Mob  Lady Sira'kess Mistress of the Tides Sira'kess (Nazjatar Empire) Killable Various Locations
Neutral  Nar'jira Naz'jar battlemaiden, champion of Azshara Naz'jar (Nazjatar Empire) Alive Shimmering Expanse
Mob  Ophelia Siren of the Twilight Highlands Blackscale naga (Twilight's Hammer) Killable Twilight Highlands
Mob  Overseer Idra'kess Leader of the Idra'kess Idra'kess (Nazjatar Empire) Killable Various Locations
Neutral  Raj Naz'jan Emperor of the Riplash Riplash (Nazjatar Empire) Unknown Unknown
Neutral  Skar'this the Heretic Heretic follower of Neptulon Neptulon Alive Slave Pens
Mob  Valishj Priestess of Azshara Slitherblade (Nazjatar Empire) Killable Slitherblade Shore, Desolace
Boss  Warlord Kalithresh Overseer of the Steamvault Illidan's Naga (Illidari) Deceased-Killable Steamvault
Mob   Zar'jira Goddess of the Underworld Minions, leader of the Spitescale Underworld Minions, Spitescale Deceased-Killable Echo Isles, Durotar
Neutral  Zhahara Darksquall Ordered by her superiors to find Pandaria Nazjatar Empire Deceased Unknown

Naga tribes

Rajis Fyashe, mistress of the Bloodscale naga

Name Leader Zone(s)
Azsh'ir Unknown Kelp'thar Forest, Shimmering Expanse
Blackfathom  Lady Sarevess Blackfathom Deeps
Blackscale  Fathom-Lord Heth'Jatar Twilight Highlands
Bloodcursed  Atoph the Bloodcursed Bloodmyst Isle
Bloodscale  Rajis Fyashe Zangarmarsh
Bloodwash Unknown Blasted Lands
Coilfang  Lady Vashj Coilfang Reservoir
Coilskar  High Warlord Naj'entus Shadowmoon Valley, Black Temple, Magisters' Terrace
Coilskar (Illidari) IconSmall Naga Female.gif Lady S'theno Mardum
Daggerspine  Prince Nazjak Hillsbrad Foothills, Arathi Highlands
Darkcrest  Rajah Haghazed Zangarmarsh
Deepsurge/Felsurge IconSmall FelNaga Female.gif Lady Ssathara Broken Shore
Darkspine Unknown Isle of Quel'Danas
Felrage IconSmall FelNaga Male.gif Warlord Kaz'jatar Broken Shore
Hatecoil  Tidemistress Athissa Azsuna, Eye of Azshara
Hatecrest  General Skessesh Feralas
Idra'kess  Overseer Idra'kess Shimmering Expanse
Murkwater  Deepsiren Saffsis Val'sharah
Naga explorers  Lord Sakrasis Cape of Stranglethorn
Naz'jar  Lady Naz'jar Shimmering Expanse, Throne of the Tides
Nazeshi  Tidemistress Nazesh Zuldazar
Rimescale Unknown Stormheim, Highmountain
Riplash  Raj Naz'jan Borean Tundra
Sashj'tar IconSmall NagaSeaWitch.gif Tidemistress Sashj'tar Jandvik, Azuregale Bay
Sira'kess  Lady Sira'kess Shimmering Expanse, Abyssal Depths
Slitherblade  Valishj Desolace
Spitefin IconSmall NagaLord.gif Tide Lord Vorshasz Whispering Reef
Spitelash  Warlord Krellian Azshara
Spitescale  Zar'jira Durotar
Stormscale  Lord Sinslayer Darkshore
Strashaz  Tidelord Rrurgaz Dustwallow Marsh
Tidescale  Mistress Sassz'ine Tomb of Sargeras
Timeworn Unknown Azsuna
Vashj'elan  Faceless of the Deep Lost Isles
Vilescale  Lord Slithin Nazmir
Wrathfin  Overseer Tidewrath Underbog
Wrathscale  Warlord Sriss'tiz Azuremyst Isle, Bloodmyst Isle
Wrathtail  Ruuzel Ashenvale
Zeth'jir  Ruuzel Stormsong Valley
Zin'jatar IconSmall Naga Male.gif Fathom-Lord Zin'jatar Kelp'thar Forest, Shimmering Expanse
Zithreenai IconSmall NagaSeaWitch.gif Lady Zithreen Abyssal Maw; Shimmering Expanse

In the RPG

On the Lands of Conflict cover art.

Naga in the Monster Guide.

On the right of the Monster Guide cover art.

Naga in Dark Factions.

Icon-RPG.png This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

Naga history

The catastrophe known as the Great Sundering split the land apart to become the continents and islands as we now know them. Thousands perished, and the kaldorei lands were devastated. The Burning Legion was banished. The land around the destroyed Well of Eternity and most of Zin-Azshari blasted downward, to the bottom of the inrushing seas, to smash into the ocean floor.

The Maelstrom formed above the ocean at this location, creating lasting testament to its history. The Maelstrom exists to this day. It is a large and violent magical storm that rages over the ocean. The Maelstrom whips the sea beneath it into an enormous whirlpool, the center of which is called the Eye. Once caught in the whirlpool's currents, most creatures have no chance of escaping. Furthermore, under the waves is an impassable whirling wall of water surrounding the Eye.

Many night elves, including Azshara, sank to the seafloor with their city. These Highborne survived. They were cursed and became the naga — serpentlike, water-breathing monstrosities. Their men and women diverged in appearance, physicality, and mindset. They lived at the bottom of the ocean, beneath the Maelstrom, for 10,000 years.

Yet they did more than survive. The imploded Well of Eternity left behind residual energies, which twisted in the ocean depths near the naga's city. Over ten millennia these energies mutated the fallen Highborne, altering them even further to suit their new environment. The naga recast ruined Zin-Azshari into a new capital: Nazjatar. Ruling the naga was Azshara, now mutated into a terrible demigod.

Over the time the naga likely tamed some native creatures (like snap dragons and dragon turtles to use in warfare, studied arcane magic and clashed with the sea giants and makrura, whose capital Mak'aru is in the same neighborhood.[59]

Naga are sinister, ophidian humanoids that dwell beneath the ocean. Theirs is an ancient and mystical culture, for ten thousand years ago they were Kaldorei who mutated into vengeful humanoid sea serpents. While many remain on Azeroth to attempt to reclaim the surface world, a large group followed the power-mad betrayer, Illidan Stormrage, into Outland and proceeded to claim the watery areas of the shattered land.[60] In addition to their natural longevity, a number of naga develop mutations that increase their life spans even further. Some are immortal.[61]


Naga only marginally resemble the noble race they once were. Their proud kaldorei visages are warped and twisted. Naga are avaricious and sadistic, and their millennia of aquatic banishment has only intensified their evil, power-hungry nature. The naga are part night elf, part serpent, and some have evolved bizarre oceanic mutations. The Well of Eternity's residual energies are unpredictable, and their mutative power manifests in different ways. In all naga, many of these mutations are simply cosmetic — soft spines running down their backs, or extra fins adorning their arms, for instance. Some naga, though, also possess mutations that have a more substantial effect.[62] In this way, the race has developed an array of genetic variations and defenses, such as ink jets, tentacles, razor fins, venomous fangs, hardened barnacle carapaces and spined fists. Naga average 6 1/2 feet tall, and naga men are much bulkier than women.[63]

Sexual dimorphism

The most striking aspect of naga culture is the role that gender plays in their lives. Due to the ancient curse that transformed them into naga, males and females are physically and mentally different, and this difference affects their culture. The men are thickly built, with humanoid torsos merging into a serpent hind section. Their scales are large and thick, and their heads are reminiscent of dragons, showing little sign of their elven ancestry.[64] Naga men are bestial and considered less intelligent than females, but are remarkably strong and tough, able to withstand a great deal of bodily injury.[63] Naga women more resemble the kaldorei from whom they came, their faces fair, even beautiful. This unearthly splendor is ruined by their monstrous deformities — they often have multiple limbs (four to six arms). Females kept more of their Elven features and their intelligence.[64][65]

Because of these traits, naga society is matriarchal. Naga see women as superior to men. Naga men don't chafe under these conditions; rather, they are happy to serve their beautiful (for naga) mistresses. While exceptions exist, naga men perform tasks requiring physical strength and stamina, while naga women take up intellectual pursuits. Naga women are natural spellcasters and rely on magic and poison to defeat their enemies. Men mine stone and coral for building, for example, while women draw the blueprints and create the strangely delicate frescoes that adorn Nazjatar's buildings. In military matters, men are warriors and guards, while women are generals and magi. Naga Myrmidon and Royal Guard, for instance, are strong males and powerful melee fighters[60] Some exceptions do exist, and male naga commanders are not completely unknown.[62]

Unique features

Some naga have unique features. For example, sea witches like Lady Vashj have snakes instead of hair. Female naga with a nest of thin, twining snakes instead of hair allow the naga to see in all directions.[64]

A naga anomaly is a naga that has mutated greater changes, some are barely recognizable as related to their cousins.



All naga revere their queen, the mighty Azshara. They have never had another queen, and Azshara has become a living demigod for the naga. Everything they do is according to her design — and she has had ten millennia to refine her plans. The civilization of the naga has extensive codes, laws, and ceremonies. Factions, some millennia old, work continuously in bids for power, seeking the blessings of their queen. She plots her revenge on the night elves, biding her time until the growing might of the naga can be brought to bear.

Naga have finely worked robes that function as leather armor. They hunt large prey with tridents and scimitars. They are experienced in formation fighting, particularly in dealings with murlocs and mur'gul. A warband will deploy male infantry to engage at moderate range with tridents, while the females cast spells. The men are willing to sacrifice themselves if ordered. Leaders will avoid heavy losses, but are otherwise open to small risks.[64]


Azshara in Shadows & Light.

Over the eons, queen Azshara, the most powerful arcanist of the ancient world, has grown in power and magnificence. To the naga, she is a living demigod, and they venerate her. Her presence in Nazjatar is a powerful motivating force for the naga, and in their minds Azshara, Nazjatar, and the naga are inextricably linked — perhaps the same thing, in a way. Naga pay homage to their heritage and their queen. The beings they once worshipped as kaldorei — Malorne, Cenarius, even Elune — are nothing but memories.[62]


Naga typically speak their own language, Nazja, and most know Common. For various reasons, individual naga learn to speak with the creatures with which they interact. Some also learn the language of their heritage, Darnassian.[66][67]

Naga relations

Naga are dangerous and avaricious, and most races are unaware of their existence. Naga play well with blood elves, trolls, and other dark, independent powers, but only the rarest naga joins the Alliance or Horde.

The naga traveling with Illidan have a more educated view of Kalimdor's races than the naga who remained at the bottom of the sea or in one of the eastern outposts. These travelers hold the blood elves in high regard, as they are also evolved children of the Highborne, and they too fought with Illidan. The time spent together in battle made the two races respect and admire each other's skills.

The naga can either take or leave the goblins and trolls, creatures who care nothing for their own pasts. The half-orcs, furbolgs, and pandaren don't trust the naga, and the naga feel the same way in return. They feel that divine magic practitioners are weak and without ambition. The naga are a neutral race for a very good reason: neither the Alliance nor the Horde will welcome them. The Alliance elicits nothing but rage in the minds of the naga. Their former brethren, the night elves, still thrive on the continent, and have not forgotten their grudges with the naga. Their blatant hatred of the night elves is only rivaled by the night elves' feelings for them. As night elf leaders Tyrande Whisperwind and Malfurion Stormrage are highly respected within the Alliance, their hatred and distrust of the naga have spread to the other races. The races of the Horde are met with derisiveness from the naga; they would have no part of the Horde even if invited to join. The spiritual natures of these races are similar to the pandaren and furbolgs, and therefore worthy of similar disrespect. The naga consider the Horde to be nothing more than barbaric, weak-minded fools. They would sooner accept the night elves as masters than join the Horde.[68] Even though the blood elves of Quel'Thalas are members of the Horde, there is no sign of diplomacy between the two powers; in addition to naga opinions, the Azerothian blood elves do not unilaterally accept the philosophy that Kael has adopted, and likely wish to avoid association with the naga. The naga seem to be hated by the Horde as they've assaulted their newfound friends, the tuskarr. The naga's main rival for dominance of the ocean are sea giants and kvaldir; these creatures hate naga and slay them on sight.

Naga are dark creatures, evil and cunning. A naga might join forces with a being of another race in order to serve his own ends, however, much as Lady Vashj did with Illidan and his forces. Naga are selfish creatures, though, and think only of their own (and their race's) dominance. Their minds have little room for charity or kindness. A naga that renounced his evil ways would be a unique individual indeed.[66] Some naga may be sent to the land on a mission, or they may be exiled who defy the naga queen. Few among the humanoid races are aware of the naga's history, so most encounters deal primarily with their strange countenance. Naga characters can use disguise or magic to avoid notice. Naga heroes are usually limited to a few mutations. Far from the power of Nazjatar, the powers of the flesh are less likely to be awakened in this way.[69]


Villain Races by Chris Metzen.

Naga siren.

Naga in the water.

The naga have armies composed of various races. They have managed to enslave large numbers of mur'gul; this aquatic race fears the naga's magical abilities. Mur'gul slaves are used as staging troops and cannon fodder, with artillery support from mighty dragon turtles. Naga males serve as shock troops; they deploy as infantry in close formations wielding scimitars, tridents, and nets while females stand back hurling spells at the enemy. Some few are priestesses of the tides. Naga women act as both a source of support magic for their allies and as offensive ranged punishers. Males may have command over small numbers of troops but females will always be in overall command of any naga force. Naga Royal Guards, as their name implies, serve as protection for important individuals. Naga sea witches are some of the most powerful champions the race has to offer. Sirens are more common but still deadly, using their magic to incapacitate foes so the naga myrmidons can sweep in and finish them off.

The naga have a powerful military, though they have yet to truly make their presence felt in the world. So far, their efforts are limited to certain select engagements (such as against the Scourge during Illidan's attempt on the Frozen Throne) and various exploratory missions along Azeroth's coasts and other remote places. Rumors say that the naga are preparing for a major invasion of the land; they are now building their forces, securing strategic locations, claiming important items and information, and probing the defenses of the Alliance, Horde, Scourge, and their numerous other rivals. Whispers say that Azshara seeks to regain her position as queen of the land.

Naga society is ancient and cunning, and their warriors are the same way. All naga enjoy using their aquatic natures against their foes, particularly against generals who have not fought naga. A naga commander attempts to maneuver his forces to meet the enemy on a battlefield with rivers, lakes, marshes or similar features; such bodies of water are no impediment to naga, but serve as barriers for land-based forces as well as hiding spots and roads for the naga forces.

As far as anyone knows, the only real naga armies that currently exist are beneath the waves, in Nazjatar and Vashj'ir, and in Outland, where a force of naga under Lady Vashj worked with Illidan until its defeat. Other, smaller groups are scattered across the world, where they investigate items and places of importance to the naga's mysterious purposes. These forces usually have a single leader — a powerful spellcaster (female) or warrior (male) — a dozen or so naga myrmidons, and a few naga sirens. They may have some mur'gul slaves to serve as expendable troops and do the dirty work, and some groups include a couple of snap dragons, couatl, or tidal guardians as support, depending on the nature of the mission. In addition to these groups, naga explorers travel out from the coasts and from naga bases, gathering information for their queen.[70]

As a companion pet

Notes and trivia

  • The naga who invaded Stormsong Valley brought their favorite pets: Abyssal Eels.[71]
  • When compared to fel orcs, naga are much larger and more physically powerful.[72]
  • Naga were first mentioned in Day of the Dragon, where Krasus found one frozen in Malygos's sanctum in Northrend. He was only able to utter, "Na-" before he was cut off.[73]
  • The  [Book of the Ancients] is said to contain many secrets about the naga.
  • Many naga females are able to unleash a deafening scream, such as the Hatecrest Screamers, Wrathscale Screamers, Spitelash Screamers, Coilfang Hate-Screamers, Daggerspine Screamers and the Azsh'ir Wave Screamers.
  • The Cataclysm quest A [5-30] Naga In Our Midst mentions that "It is said that despite their monstrous features, naga are night elves warped by the arcane magic of Queen Azshara". This presumably constitutes flavor lore, as it conflicts with most other accounts of the naga's creation.
  • One can transform into a naga using  [Bones of Transformation], obtained from Archaeology.
  • The naga are the only race to appear in each campaign of Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne.
  • The female naga are voiced by Alexis Iacono in Legion.
  • Naga were initially planned to be a playable race in classic World of Warcraft, alongside demons and goblins.[74] The concept was supported by the entire team, with the exception of the animators:[75] according to Johnathan Staats, playable naga were cut entirely due to art-related reasons, specifically issues with putting them on mounts and the way armor would look on them.[74][75] Their large spikes would conflict with wearing armor,[74] and Staats relates playable naga's armor to the experience of playing a druid and finding it frustrating to not be able to see one's character's gear while in animal form, as most armor pieces wouldn't have worked on naga and thus wouldn't have been visible.[75] Ultimately, one WoW developer created a concept sketch for the naga that ended up being used for Warcraft III, solidifying the naga's appearance and preventing them from being implemented as a bipedal player race in WoW.[74]
    • In a behind the scenes interview for The Burning Crusade, Chris Metzen stated that he would still like naga to be playable one day along with goblins (who later became playable in Cataclysm) and ogres.[76] Greg Street has commented that incorporating naga as a playable race "would present some unique challenges, such as lack of pants."[77]
  • The naga are inspired by Desi culture and mythology.
    • The Nāga are, in Desi mythology and folklore, beings of great power and magic who can assume the form of a snake, a human, or a snake-human hybrid. Their females, called Nagin or Nagini, can take the forms of human-headed serpents, multi-headed serpents, humans with the heads of serpents, or a serpent with the head and torso of a human. They are often associated with bodies of water. "Nag" means cobra in Hindi, its root derived from Sanskrit. This is not to be confused with "Naga", also referring to an ethnic group in North-Eastern India and a mountain range where the members of the tribe live.
    • The common statues of Azshara bear a strong resemblance to statues of Shiva as Nataraja. Her giant statue in Nazjatar instead resembles Parvati as Durga given the spear/staff.
    • Some naga's names are Desi name derivatives, such as the use of the name/title "Raj".
    • The association of Desi-inspired Naga with the Old Gods may be due to various Asian cultures (Desi, Arab, Persian, etc.) featuring as such within Lovecraftian horror.


World of Warcraft

Old models
Current models

Warcraft III




Patch changes

  • Battle for Azeroth Patch 8.0.1 (2018-07-17): Naga lord model updated.
  • Legion Patch 7.0.3 (2016-07-19): The World of Warcraft models received an update for both the males and females (including the sea witch model).

See also


  1. ^ a b Night of the Dragon, chapter 3
  2. ^ A [10-30] Perfectly Pure
  3. ^ H [10-30] The Holy Water of Clarity
  4. ^ a b Ultimate Visual Guide, Updated and Expanded, pg. 198
  5. ^ a b c d e f g The Warcraft Encyclopedia/Naga
  6. ^ a b c World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, pg. 105
  7. ^ a b Warbringers: Azshara
  8. ^ a b World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 86
  9. ^ Words of Wind and Earth
  10. ^ The Sundering of the World
  11. ^ The Tomb of Sargeras (WC3 NightElf)
  12. ^ Day of the Dragon, chapter 9
  13. ^ World of Warcraft: Game Manual
  14. ^ Terror of the Tides
  15. ^ "Terror of the Tides: The Ruins of Dalaran", Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. Blizzard Entertainment.
  16. ^ Misconceptions (WC3 BloodElf)
  17. ^ A Dark Covenant (WC3 BloodElf)
  18. ^ The Dungeons of Dalaran (WC3 BloodElf)
  19. ^ Old Hatreds (WC3 Orc)
  20. ^ N [70D] Orders from Lady Vashj
  21. ^ Lady Vashj (tactics)#Quotes
  22. ^ World of Warcraft: Illidan, chapter 12
  23. ^ Pearl of Pandaria
  24. ^
  25. ^ N [10-30] A Father's Words
  26. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 205
  27. ^ N [45RWQ] Mission: Felrage Destruction
  28. ^ N [45WQ] The Cost of Power
  29. ^ Blizzcon 2016 Q&A
  30. ^ Lady Ssathara says: The Legion promises us strength, greater than even Lady Azshara can provide!
  31. ^ Mistress Sassz'ine yells: These fools bring the Tidestone to us! Just as our blessed queen foresaw it!
  32. ^ a b Priestess Zaldraxia#Quotes
  33. ^ Stealing the Naga's Secrets (Alliance)#Progress
  34. ^ N [30-35] The Revered Lady
  35. ^ H [30-35] Blast Him!
  36. ^ Wrath of Azshara#Adventure Guide
  37. ^ B [50] Scouting the Palace
  38. ^ Generic naga aggro quotes: Die, landwalker!, I'll taste your blood, landwalker!, Perish, landwalker!, etc.
  39. ^ Captive Spitescale Scout says: I sshal tasste your blood, landling.
  40. ^ Coilfang (Coilfang Champion, Coilfang Engineer, Coilfang Myrmidon, etc.) aggro quote: Die, warmblood!
  41. ^ A [30-35] On Our Own Terms/H [30-35] Bring It On!: Zin'jatar Scout yells: Sssoftsskinss! Sssoon you shall ssserve my Lady!
  42. ^ Kroniss says: Murky waters envelop you, softssskin!
  43. ^ Turquoise Turtle
  44. ^ N [15-30] False Idols
  45. ^ N [15-30] Neptool's Revenge
  46. ^ A Dark Covenant: "I know this hunger, Kael. Like us, your people are addicted to magic!"
  47. ^ The Old Wizard's Almanac
  48. ^ Revelations
  49. ^ H IconSmall Goblin Male.gifIconSmall Goblin Female.gif [1-20] Naga Hide
  50. ^  [Intact Naga Hide]
  51. ^  [Intact Nazjatar Molting]
  52. ^  [Sashj'tar Air Bladder]
  53. ^ N [45] Fisherman's Tonic
  54. ^ N [50WQ] Dirty Dozen
  55. ^ H IconSmall Goblin Male.gifIconSmall Goblin Female.gif [1-20] Surrender or Else!
  56. ^ H IconSmall Goblin Male.gifIconSmall Goblin Female.gif [1-20] Irresistible Pool Pony
  57. ^ Naga Hatchling
  58. ^  [Zanj'ir Poker]
  59. ^ Dark Factions, pg. 118 - 119
  60. ^ a b Monster Guide, pg. 105
  61. ^ Dark Factions, pg. 24
  62. ^ a b c Dark Factions, pg. 12, 66, 85, 119 - 120
  63. ^ a b Alliance & Horde Compendium, pg. 19
  64. ^ a b c d Magic & Mayhem, pg. 66
  65. ^ Alliance & Horde Compendium, pg. 72 - 73
  66. ^ a b Monster Guide, pg. 106
  67. ^ Alliance & Horde Compendium, pg. 21
  68. ^ Alliance & Horde Compendium, pg. 73
  69. ^ Manual of Monsters, pg. 67
  70. ^ Dark Factions, pg. 180 - 181
  71. ^  [Abyssal Eel]
  72. ^ World of Warcraft: Illidan, chapter 1
  73. ^ Day of the Dragon, pg. 145 - 146
  74. ^ a b c d Countdown To Classic: Episode #63 – The Making Of World Of Warcraft With Vanilla Dev, John Staats (2:23:20) (2018-08-20). Retrieved on 2018-09-24.
  75. ^ a b c MMO-Champion 2018-09-24. John Staats Interview - The World of Warcraft Diary (16:00). YouTube. Retrieved on 2018-09-24.
  76. ^ Burning Crusade Behind The Scenes - The Draenei (7:43). YouTube (2008-03-19). Retrieved on 2018-09-25.
  77. ^ Chaud 2013-04-26. 5.2 Live Developer Q&A - Patch 5.2 and Beyond. MMO-Champion. Retrieved on 2016-09-02.