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This article is about the shattered world known as Outland. For its history before its destruction, see Draenor. For the alternate universe's counterpart of Draenor/Outland, see Draenor (alternate universe).
Level: 10 - 30
Battle Pet Level: 17 - 21
Cataclysm Outland loading screen
Type Shattered world
Capital(s) Various
Races Various
Ruler(s) Sha'tar
Location Twisting Nether[1][2]

Outland (sometimes mistakenly called "the Outland"[3] or "the Outlands"[4][5]) is the shattered floating remnants of the destroyed world of Draenor, the homeworld of the orcs and ogres and refuge of the draenei. After the sundering of Draenor, Outland was thrown partially towards the Twisting Nether, and is now in a constant state of degradation.[6]

After it's creation Outland became inhabited by demons and become the domain of the pit lord Magtheridon who ruled it for the Burning Legion. Magtheridon was eventually deposed and replaced by Illidan Stormrage who brought the blood elves and naga to the world. As Kazzak reopened the Dark Portal to Outland from Azeroth letting new demons enter Azeroth expeditions from the Horde and Alliance battling back the demons entered the world in the invasion of Outland. In the conflict, the Alliance and the Horde also came into conflict with Illidan's forces, which would end Illidan's rule with his death at the Black Temple.

Outland was originally featured in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne and is the theater of the World of Warcraft expansion The Burning Crusade. From a gameplay point of view, Outland used to be accessed from Azeroth through the Dark Portal in the Blasted Lands but after the Warlords of Draenor expansion it became accessible via mage portals in Orgrimmar and Stormwind City.[7]


Blade's Edge Mountains concept art

Outland landscape and the Twisting Nether.

Chronicle3 Outland map

Outland following Draenor's destruction.

“A world shattered?" His tone told her that he thought her words a gross understatement. "Terrible hardly begins to describe it. We thought the world was ending. The sky burned. The continents ripped apart. Lava flowed. Wild magic danced from mountain peak to mountain peak. Sometimes the tips of mountains rose into the air and floated away. Sometimes they crashed down and killed thousands.”

Alexius to Maiev Shadowsong[8]

Outland was created when Draenor became the focus of an attack, via the Dark Portal, of an Alliance expedition aiming to end the orcish threat to Azeroth once and for all. In the midst of the ensuing battle, the elder shaman Ner'zhul attempted to allow the remaining orcs on Draenor to escape to other worlds by opening other dimensional portals; however the presence of so many portals tore the planet apart, launching torn fragments of the former world towards the Twisting Nether, and the barely-habitable remnants were renamed Outland. Most life on Draenor was wiped out in the explosion, and the surviving continent was drastically reshaped; most of the remaining wildlife became sickly or corrupt.[9] Due to the planet's destruction, the barriers between Draenor and the Twisting Nether collapsed, and the shredded reality left open paths to all various corners of the cosmos. Outland had become one of the most important strategic places. Many of Ner'zhul's portals were permanently open and the world now acted as a crossroads for any force that wished to travel quickly from one end of the universe to the other.[10] Despite this plenty of the species on the planet survived, with some even being transformed by the creation of Outland.

Some time after a pit lord named Magtheridon rallied the surviving orcs (with the exception of the Mag'har) and took control of Outland. Using the remaining dimensional gates, he drew demons from the rest of the Twisting Nether to aid him.

Most draenei that remained in Outland have become horribly mutated, and bear only a passing resemblance to their former selves.

The Lord of Outland[]

Chron3 map of Outland before Azeroth invasion

Outland before the invasion of the Alliance and Horde expeditions in Chronicle Volume 3.

The night elf demon Illidan Stormrage and many of the naga and blood elves fled to Outland and succeeded in defeating Magtheridon and conquering the wasteland. After their defeat in Northrend at the hands of Prince Arthas, they returned and established permanent settlements there.

Since then, both the forces of the Light and the Shadow have realized Outland's usefulness. It can serve as a launching pad for the invasions of the Burning Legion, or as the staging ground to the forces who fight against the Legion. In response, both the naaru and the Legion have sent their agents to secure the world for their own purposes.

Now, the Alliance and the Horde must battle the forces of the maddened Illidan and the murderous followers of the Legion to safeguard Azeroth from Kil'jaeden's Burning Crusade.

Plant life still flourishes in places such as Sylvanaar in Blade's Edge Mountains and the Cenarion Thicket in Terokkar Forest. The main base of the Cenarion Circle's expedition is from Cenarion Refuge in Zangarmarsh.

Invasion of Outland[]

Main article: Invasion of Outland

The invasion of Outland[11] was the combined invasion of Outland by the Alliance and the Horde after the Burning Legion's third attempt of invading Azeroth. The goal of the war was to prevent the Legion from securing a foothold on Outland to further their attacks on Azeroth through the Dark Portal.


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

At the time of the war against the Lich King, Vindicator Maraad explained to his grandnephew Med'an that the crossing between the two worlds was safer, as the armies of Azeroth have scoured much of the demons in Outland. Since the invasion of Outland, the forces of the Burning Legion were much diminished, and the Dark Portal is still under surveillance to prevent their incursions into Azeroth.[12]

Cataclysm This section concerns content related to Cataclysm.

During the Cataclysm, Thrall traveled to Nagrand in Outland to converse with the elements there and turned to Aggra for shamanic instruction.

WoW-novel-logo-16x62 This section concerns content related to the Warcraft novels, novellas, or short stories.

Years later, Xaraax imprisoned Greydon Thorne in the Hidden citadel in Hellfire Peninsula, and Makasa Flintwill led an army from Azeroth and invaded it.[13]

Mists of Pandaria This section concerns content related to Mists of Pandaria.

Following Illidan's death, Akama reclaimed the Black Temple. The warlocks Kanrethad Ebonlocke and Jubeka Shadowbreaker of the Council of the Black Harvest infiltrated the temple to harness its energy.[14]

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

At the time of the war in Draenor, Archmage Vargoth mentioned that the current state of Outland was constantly degrading.[6]

Legion This section concerns content related to Legion.

During the third invasion of the Burning Legion, Nikki the Gossip described Outland as a dangerous place.[15]

Kor'vas Bloodthorn and an Order Hall leader clashed with the forces of Highlord Kruul at the Stair of Destiny.[16] The Burning Legion and the champions of Azeroth briefly clashed in the Arcatraz during the offensive on Argus.[17]

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

At the time of the Fourth War, a few ethereal arcanists of the Consortium have been hired by the Horde and the Alliance to maintain portals to Shattrath City within the Pathfinder's Den and the Wizard's Sanctum,[18] respectively in Orgrimmar and Stormwind City.

When Varok Saurfang was talking with Thrall in his friend's new home in Nagrand, he spoke about how good the world looked. But that it felt wrong, as Outland was broken and falling apart. After Varok touched Nagrand's grain, it crumbled.[19]


Nagrand Concept Art Peter Lee 3

Nagrand overseen by a Mag'har.

Before Draenor was torn apart by the portal rifts, it was a vast planet of continents and seas, much like Azeroth. When the world was destroyed it was tossed towards the Twisting Nether. It no longer had its sun, but its moon, the Pale Lady still hovered looking far larger than it ever did before. Other spheres now existed as well, including a rosy one, and a smaller light blue one.[20] This may be partially wrong as the sun and sunlight[21] were later described to be present.[22]

The damage to the world had sundered reality, gravity, space, and even time may not even function properly.[20]


Chris Metzen stated that Outland was floating in the Twisting Nether[23] and the official overview stated that Outland was "floating upon the astral winds of the Twisting Nether" as well. This can also be seen in-game when flying near the edges of the continent or between each region. Netherstorm also heavily features the Nether and its energies.

In World of Warcraft: Illidan however, Illidan describes Outland as "a tiny speck in the infinity of the Great Dark Beyond".[24]

This may just have been an oversight as previous sources and the game put Outland fully shrouded by the Twisting Nether. Later, World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3 described the state of Outland with barriers between Draenor and the Twisting Nether being collapsed, leaving open paths to all the various corners of the cosmos.[25] However, it is also worth to note that demons that died in Outland (such as Kazzak and Ambassador Hellmaw) did not die permanently as they should when dying in the Nether. As such, it can be speculated that Outland is not fully shrouded in the Nether.



Map of Outland.

Outland currently consists of seven large zones that connect to each other but differ sharply in environment.

Lore locations[]



Main article: Instances by continent


Main article: Battleground


Main article: Arena

Notable leaders[]

History Rise of the Horde Invasion of Draenor Third War War in Outland
Ruler Gul'dan Ner'zhul Magtheridon Illidan Stormrage A'dal


Official site info[]

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

From Outland from the Burning Crusade section of the Official site: The scattered wastes of Outland are all that remain of Draenor, the once beautiful homeworld of the orcs. Following the Second War, the Alliance invaded Draenor by crossing through the Dark Portal. To their horror, they discovered that Ner'zhul - the dark warlord of Horde - had constructed a series of new gateways that could lead the beaten Horde to newer, unspoiled worlds. As the Alliance forces closed in around him, Ner'zhul opened his gateways as a means of escape. However, the gateways' clashing energies resulted in a catastrophic explosion that ultimately ripped the world of Draenor apart.

Nearly thirteen years later - towards the end of the Third War - the fallen night elf, Illidan, discovered that huge chunks of Draenor still existed - floating upon the astral winds of the Twisting Nether. After his defeat at the hands of the evil Prince Arthas, Illidan fled to the remnants of Draenor and dubbed them Outland. He quickly seized control of the chaotic region and sealed the last of Ner'zhul's cursed gateways.

Though he is the undisputed ruler of the ravaged land, Illidan lives in fear that he will be discovered by his powerful enemies - most notably Arthas, the new Lich King, and the remaining Lords of the Burning Legion. Currently, Outland is home to a number of scattered draenei tribes, primitive orcs and the powerful, arcane creatures of the Nether itself. Agents of the Burning Legion have also targeted the region as a vital strategic location in their unending Burning Crusade to scour all life from the universe.


Cataclysm This section concerns content related to Cataclysm.

Elemental Rifts briefly appeared during patch 4.0.1 and 4.0.3a during the Cataclysm world event.

Questions have been raised about the continuity of the Burning Crusade storyline following the Cataclysm, and blue-poster Bornakk has addressed this issue:

You have to consider the changes with some form of leniency, while technically you could say that if the story progresses then we need to remove a bunch of the content from Outland and Northrend as those are over - but for numerous reasons, you can probably see why that would be a bad idea. This is the same type of thing that happens by just having a persistent world, just because one quest was completed where something was killed doesn't mean it vanishes from your sight forever. While a level 80 doesn't need to return to the locations of Outland and Northrend and can focus on the new stories - a new character hasn't helped defeat the villains in those areas so they still need to answer the call and fight them off (or in the terms people are tossing around, they need to level). [1]

Warlords of Draenor[]

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

The portal to the Blasted Lands in capital cities now leads directly to Hellfire Peninsula.


Legion This section concerns content related to Legion.

Following patch 7.3.5, level scaling was implemented in Outland, with maximum zone level being 80 (originally 70).

In the RPG[]

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

Outland consists of one large, central landmass with smaller chunks and debris floating all around it. Black chains connect some of these islands; adventurers can walk across these chains (they must be careful to avoid an unpleasant tumble into the Twisting Nether), fly, or in some cases jump to other islands. Outland is mostly bare and lifeless, like Draenor before its demise. The orcs built huge, black fortresses across their world, and some of them still stand. Burning Legion encampments and wretched draenei communities are scattered across the isles.[26]

Although Outland lies within and is part of the Twisting Nether, in many sources its properties are different than the Nether itself. Outland is described as having normal gravity, normal time, and finite shape and size. Although it is still alterably morphic, and many of its rocks defy gravity.[27][28]

Druids have magically replanted some locations on the central landmass of Outland that were formerly desolate, describing the areas as "Green Havens".[26]

Notes and trivia[]

  • Interactive map secret on official site: If you click the following areas on the Official Website Interactive Map, the OUTLAND words begin to glow. A few moments later, the blood elf does a /dance move. Click the areas in this order: Shadowmoon Valley, Blade's Edge Mountains, Nagrand, Netherstorm, Zangarmarsh, Hellfire Peninsula, Terokkar Forest.


In-game maps
Sky of Outland
Fan art


  1. ^ Archive lore tweets from loreology: "While normally imperceptible to mortals, the Twisting Nether bleeds into the physical realm. That’s because Outland is truly devastated. Those seen in Outland are most likely other (far away) worlds that you see and not “local” celestial bodies."
  2. ^ The zone between the regions is labeled "Twisting Nether"
  3. ^ Magistrix Erona#Quotes
  4. ^ Privateer Groy#Quotes
  5. ^ N [60-62] A Dragon's Day Off
  6. ^ a b N [40] The Staff of Archmage Vargoth
  7. ^ WarcraftDevs: "Outland is still accessible via mage portals in the same way that you can port there yourself. (2/2)"
  8. ^ World of Warcraft: Illidan, chapter 10
  9. ^ Dave Kosak on Twitter (2014-04-11). Retrieved on 2020-04-05.​ “Yes, most of Outland's wildlife was sickly/corrupt.
  10. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 12 - 13
  11. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 151
  12. ^ World of Warcraft: The Comic, Issue 23: The Gathering
  13. ^ Traveler: The Spiral Path
  14. ^ Pursuing the Black Harvest
  15. ^ N Rogue [10-45] A More Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy
  16. ^ N [45] Between Worlds
  17. ^ N [45] Foiling the Legion's Jailbreak
  18. ^ Thrallmar Mage: "If you're looking to return to Outland, our allies amongst the ethereals have opened a portal to Shattrath City."
  19. ^ Safe Haven
  20. ^ a b c d Beyond the Dark Portal, pg. 418
  21. ^ Traveler: The Shining Blade, chapter 35
  22. ^ World of Warcraft: Illidan, chapter 4
  23. ^ BlizzCon 2005 - Lore Panel
  24. ^ World of Warcraft: Illidan, chapter 9: He saw that Outland was but a tiny speck in the infinity of the Great Dark Beyond.
  25. ^ World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 3, pg. 12
  26. ^ a b Shadows & Light, pg. 150
  27. ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 24
  28. ^ Shadows & Light, pg. 149
  29. ^ Zephyr § Quotes
  30. ^ Blizzard Museum - "Originally Outland was to be a zone that shipped with the original World of Warcraft."
  31. ^ MMO-Champion 2018-09-24. John Staats Interview - The World of Warcraft Diary (18:27). YouTube. Retrieved on 2018-09-24.
  32. ^ "Why Draenor?" segment of the Behind-the-Scenes DVD of the World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor Collector's Edition
  33. ^ World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade - Map of Outland. Blizzard Entertainment. Archived from the original on 2008-05-12. Retrieved on 2018-06-28.

External links[]