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This article is about Blizzard's Warcraft material. For the lore of the cosmos, see Great Dark Beyond and plane. For the film universe information, see Warcraft film universe.
Warcraft 2002
The official logo for the franchise
Genres Real-time strategy, MMORPG, collectible card game
Developer(s) Blizzard Entertainment
Publisher(s) Blizzard Entertainment
Creator(s) Allen Adham
Frank Pearce
Michael Morhaime
Platforms DOS, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Sega Saturn, PlayStation, iOS, Android
First release Warcraft: Orcs & Humans
November 23, 1994[1]
Latest release World of Warcraft: Dragonflight
November 28/29, 2022

The Warcraft universe (aka Warcraft franchise and the Warcraft Saga)[2] is the game world, history, and lore created by Blizzard Entertainment, beginning with the seminal title Warcraft: Orcs & Humans. This page contains information about the official sources of Warcraft franchise and its lore.

See also lore, Category:Sources, Category:Online sources, Wowpedia:Citation, and Wowpedia:Book citation index.

Want to know more about the lore of World of Warcraft? Although the game doesn't require any prior knowledge of Warcraft lore to enjoy, you may appreciate the broader understanding of the setting and characters in the game that you will gain from learning about the lore. Here are some resources that are available:

Selected Warcraft universe articles[]

Warcraft »
World of Warcraft »
World of Warcraft: Classic »
Other games
Books »

Other media
Blizzard Entertainment »
External links

The original Warcraft logo

Games, their manuals, and official sites[]

The computer games were the origin of the Warcraft universe, and continue to be its primary focus. Much has changed in the lore since Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, with each new release greatly expanding the world and revising some of the past lore.

Warcraft introduced the basic conflict between the orcs and humans, as well as the characters of Medivh, Llane, Garona, and Lothar.

Warcraft II expanded the world beyond the continent of Azeroth to include Khaz Modan and Lordaeron. The dwarves, high elves, trolls, goblins, and Burning Legion were introduced, as well as a host of new characters.

Warcraft III expanded the world yet again by introducing the continents of Kalimdor, Northrend, and Outland along with a mention of the mysterious land of Pandaria, a detailed backstory chronicling the creation of the world of Azeroth, and several new races including the night elves, the tauren, and the Scourge.

World of Warcraft and its expansions have continued this trend by allowing the players to experience nigh all of the colossal world as no more than one of the many little players, as well as introducing a host of new creatures and characters.

Warcraft: Orcs & Humans[]

Warcraft II[]

Warcraft Adventures[]

Warcraft III[]

World of Warcraft[]


Warcraft Arclight Rumble[]

Warcraft Arclight Rumble (mobile game)

World of Warcraft site[]

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

World of Warcraft site archives[]

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

The World of Warcraft, The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King sites didn't survive the overhaul. See the archives below for the lore articles.

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

Wrath-Logo-Small This section concerns content related to Wrath of the Lich King.
Cataclysm This section concerns content related to Cataclysm.
Mists of Pandaria This section concerns content related to Mists of Pandaria.
Warlords of Draenor This section concerns content related to Warlords of Draenor.
Legion This section concerns content related to Legion.




See also[]


World of Warcraft



Short stories[]

Battle for Azeroth
Savage World
Destination: Pandaria
Leader Short Stories
From the World of Warcraft Official Strategy Guide (hinted to be non-canon)[5]



Canceled comic
From the World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade Official Strategy Guide (hinted to be non-canon)[6]
Hearthstone This section contains information exclusive to Hearthstone and is considered non-canon.


Manga (Manhwa)[]

  • Death Knight - by Dan Jolley, December 1, 2009
  • Mage - by Richard A. Knaak, June 1, 2010
  • Shaman - by Paul Benjamin, September 28, 2010

Audio drama[]


See also[]


Animated series[]


Hearthstone This section contains information exclusive to Hearthstone and is considered non-canon.

Blizzard web-series[]

Cinematics, trailers and patch trailers[]


  • Warcraft III Cinematics Disc
  • The Making of World of Warcraft
  • World of Warcraft Behind-the-Scenes DVD[7]

RPG books[]

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


World of Warcraft[]

PDF-only material[]

Other books[]

Stub Please add any available information to this section.




Strategy Guides[]

While strategy guides contain some lore information (description of races and events), they are not lore-reviewed by Blizzard.[11]


World of Warcraft


  • Year of Fear
  • Year of Here
  • World of Warcraft 2010
  • World of Warcraft 2011 Calendar
  • World of Warcraft 2012 Daily Calendar
  • World of Warcraft 2014





  • The word Warcraft was originally written WarCraft with a capital C, similarly to StarCraft, during the first few games[12][13][14] but later adopted the lowercase 'c' with the release of Warcraft II: Edition[15] and Warcraft III.[16] The logos still continue to use WarCraft however.
  • The name "Warcraft" was created by Samwise Didier when he shouted it out during a lunchtime brainstorming session prior to the development of Warcraft: Orcs & Humans.[17] He mentioned that he had always wanted to use the name to make a game.[18] It was previously the name of his Dungeons & Dragons character and was intended to be the opposite of the word "witchcraft".[19][20] The other developers all liked the name and decided to use it because of its coolness, rather than it being based on any game design elements. Blizzard co-founder Allen Adham originally wanted to use Warcraft as the name of a whole series of games about different eras of warfare across many different genres—including fantasy, science fiction, modern military, and historic military—all with the title Warcraft and a subheading (e.g. "Warcraft: Vietnam"), with Warcraft: Orcs & Humans being the first. Adham intended this as a strategy to optimize for retail stores: having many related titles next to each other on store shelves would create cross-selling opportunities and show that the brand was well-supported. However, the only two games from this original plan that ended up actually getting made were Warcraft and StarCraft.[18]


  1. ^ Geryk, B. 2009-11-15. GameSpot Presents: A History of Real-Time Strategy Games – The First Wave. Gamespot. Archived from the original on 2009-11-20. Retrieved on 2018-03-04.
  2. ^ The Story of Warcraft
  3. ^
  4. ^ Micky Neilson on Twitter: Any chance that "Silver Hand, Ebon Blade", from the amazing Raph Ahad, can be canonized? As IntheSotSun? "It is possible."
  5. ^ Micky Neilson on Twitter (Archived): Hi, are these stories canon? "I don't believe so."
  6. ^ Micky Neilson on Twitter (Archived): Hi, are these stories canon? "I don't believe so."
  7. ^
  8. ^ World of Warcraft RPG Character Sheet at White Wolf's download site
  9. ^ World of Warcraft RPG Conversion Document at White Wolf's download site
  10. ^ World of Warcraft the Roleplaying Game Preview at White Wolf's download site
  11. ^ Micky Neilson on Twitter: "Strategy guides don't go through a lore review process."
  12. ^ File:WarCraft I - Box Art back.jpg, body paragraph
  13. ^ File:Warcraft II Box art back.jpg, body paragraph
  14. ^ File:Warcraft IIx Box art back.jpg, just below the logo
  15. ^ File:Warcraft II BNE Box art back.jpg, body paragraph
  16. ^ File:Rear-Cover-WC3-Reign-of-Chaos-Standard.jpg, Unrivaled World Editor section
  17. ^ BlizzCon 2017, "Behind Blizzard's Worlds"
  18. ^ a b Bryan Menegus 2019-10-01. How Warcraft Got Its Name. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2019-10-02.
  19. ^ Game Informer 2018-11-08. GI Show – Warcraft III, Diablo Immortal, Red Dead Developer Roundtable (27:55). Retrieved on 2019-05-08.
  20. ^ Game Informer #308: World of Triviacraft, pg. 96

External links[]