Whether or not you like him, there's Malfurion too. The guy is responsible for saving the world like 3 times. There's also Medivh, who summoned the Horde to Azeroth and then later on was the guy who tried to warn everyone of the coming Scourge. It'd be hard for me to narrow down the 5 most important characters to the lore haha, but those would be two options in my opinion. Not necessarily required, but contenders.


What about Azshara whose actions split the world?


Zovaal --> Dreadlords --> Sargeras --> Velen, Guldan, Illidan, Nerzhul, Medivh Nerzhul --> Kelthuzad, Arthas --> Sylvanas --> Greymane, Anduin Medivh --> Portal, Horde --> too much to list Void Lords --> Old Gods --> Curse of Flesh, Nightmare, Naga, Deathwing Dunno. Arthas is a super big lore figure. Same with Deathwing, Sylvanas, Garrosh, Thrall, Anduin, Jaina.


Seeing very little love for KJ in this thread! I suppose he is sort of Sargeras's underling so much of the glory can be attributed to the Titan with an S on his chest, but still... KJ is the one who tips the scales 2/3 in favor of accepting the offer Sargeras makes to the eredar. Archimonde was the most junior member of the Triumvirate by a considerable amount of time (having replaced Thal'kiel) so he alone probably wouldn't have been sufficient to convince eredar of the wisdom of Sargeras's bargain. KJ is the one who is hurt by Velen peacing out and the corruption of the orcs was basically a personal grudge that was being pursued by Kil'jaeden to the end of the Draeneis annhilation. Based on WC2 lore, it was Kil'jaeden who influenced Gul'dan to seize authority over the Horde from Ner'zhul when the latter was flagging on his resolve to murder every Draenei on the planet. It was also KJ that taught the spell to channel the portal from the Draenor-side to Gul'dan. It's still the case that KJ is the one who actually *made* the Lich King by ripping Ner'zhul's soul from his body and torturing it into submission. We've learned that the Jailer and his allies were the ones to line up the equipment of the Helm of Domination and Frostmourne to the LK so that he could throw off the Legion's shackles. But it was still KJ who did the deed of stuffing an orcish soul into a crystal and hurling it at Azeroth from the Twisting Nether (as far as we know). KJ was the driving force behind Illidan's assault on Icecrown and was also the one who turned Kael'thas into a Legion agent following Illidan's defeat at the hands of Arthas. Kil'jaedan plotted and effected the invasion of the Sunwell which culminated in his defeat and the reignition of the Sunwell. Compared to Sargy who was only active for WC1 before being banished and then again later in Legion, KJ does a whole lot more to actually get stuff done while his boss is churning angrily in limbo. Plus the opening of the Dark Portal was a two-sided effort and his work with Medivh would have come to less consequence if Gul'dan hadn't been gleefully draining the souls out of hundreds of prisoners of war and throwing them into the nascent portal to sustain it. Teamwork makes the dream work. Honestly if KJ had fucked with the Night Elves during the War of the Ancients he'd be a five tool player when it comes to forcing himself into every story thread.


I can combine two of yours to a single character: Aggrimar-->ordering draenor---> the horde and nerzhul-->everything on those two lists.


There is so little Thrall in this thread, glad you put him in there but think Varian should be there with him instead of Anduin (for now).


5 faceless and nameless First One we've yet to encounter.


Queen Azshara too maybe? Created the strongest empire ever built on Azeroth, (every continent has elven Kaldorei Empire ruins) and also was responsible for the War of The ancients


Are there any kaldorei ruins in pandaria?


I think the south was full of trolls.


pandarens were in charge at the time of the sundering, it was shaohao's mist that protected the land from it


Apparently the fucking jailer???


Apparently Zovaal as he was responsible for manipulating Sargeras through the dreadlords thereby creating the burning legion which was responsible for Arthas, Nerzhul and Guldan.


I ignore everything you just typed


Sargeras was going to achieve his goal. Their part in it was more so they had a hand in it. They also serve Denathrius and not the jailer. If the Sire is loyal to the jailer then that would be their goal but we don’t know exactly what he wants. I like the change as the idea that the Nathrazim would be loyal to Sargeras after him imprisoning them was a little odd. Plus their life cycle didn’t make sense either so I like them being made in the Shadowlands.


Lorewise - Zovaal, Sargeras Storywise - Arthas, Sylvanas, Gul'dan, Azshara


I hate that you’re probably right about Zovaal, and that a dude they just shoehorned in recently is responsible for so much in the story line. I feel like every xpac is gonna be “You think x was in charge?! Wait til you hear about y, he was behind the scenes the whole time! Oh you think y was in charge? Well here comes z!”


Yup. Zovaal is basically Warcrafts version of "Somehow, Palpatine has returned", with them saying Palpatine was secretly the puppet master controlling the other puppet master. It was actually Zovaal controlling/influencing the other big bads that controlled all their minions and schemes.


Not true if you paid any attention to it at all. He was a prisoner and half his plans didn’t work how he wanted. He got his clutches on Sylvanas’ perspective of death and was only then able to move forward with his escape. He’s not manipulating the Old God’s, the Nathrazim server Deanthrius not the jailer and aided in the crusade just to have a hand in it and The Lich King’s didn’t heed his commands either which is why he hates all 3 of them. Did you see what he was doing to Ner’zhul?


I don't even know if I'd say Zovaal impacted anything. Only his creations and servants did but the character himself has almost zero direct influence on anything that's ever happened-... including the events of Shadowlands!


That's true, kind of a good point, makes me feel a little better about this thread hahaha


WoW's lore as the game and its narrative and how we've played it over the years? As opposed to in-game lore etc.? That's tough. Thrall is responsible for the Horde being in Kalimdor at all, so I think he's on there esp. with the Green Jesus phase around Cataclysm. Jaina, Sylvanas, Illidan are a few others. Maybe Garrosh? I play Alliance, but rarely do they have a real impact unfortunately. Just 'yes we'll let the Horde do whatever they want again'.


Someone said the the Alliance rarely has any impact. Take it back! Give yourself some credit! For WoW's entire initial development, from say 2000-2004ish, the Horde wasn't even a playable faction, because so much time was building Stormwind and all those boars. And because of this, Horde Cities have nowhere to sit in them..... So the Alliance actually does have an impact. On your rear. Kek.


The way the story is right now it has to be Zovaal. I mean Idk how far back his influence goes but it’s possible he’s more or less behind Sargeras’ madness etc. If we DON’T count ‘’gods’’ or ppl just doing the ‘’gods’’’ jobs (Sylvanas, Medivh, whatever)? Like just some important person? That’s what interests me but I can’t think of any not influenced by old gods or Zovaal.. hmmm


If we go by actual good story telling and not this bullshit we have now. Sargeras -> Arthas/Nerzhul -> Gul’Dan -> Illidan -> Thrall


You mean, if we ignore Danuser's fanfiction... as we should.


The Titan Aggrimar is technically the single most important character in warcraft, not only did he order draenor (giving rise to the orcs) he is also the titan who found azeroth, leading the pantheon to it to order it and imprison the resident troublemakers. Giving rise to every other character save the dranai, the Titans, and the demons.


Gul'Dan, Gul'Dan but recolored, Ner'zuhl, Medhiv, tossup.


Cookie the Murloc. That's the list.


That I have to scroll to find Medivh is a big troubling. He is BY FAR #1. Sargeras doesn’t do anything if no medivh, no arthas, no guldan, NO HORDE, NO ALLIANCE ,no portal, no legion. There are people above him on the food chain but he is the absolute lynchpin to the very story happening as it did and us even having games to allow this conversation.


No Sargeras, no medivh.


I agree that Medivh is a lynchpin but Sargeras already *had* done stuff without Medivh. And everything bad that Medivh did was because of the fact he was possessed by Sargeras from the very moment of his conception. So they are sort of entangled in terms of those events. There is no way in hell Medivh would have been chatting with Gul'dan if not for being out of his gourd on demonic whisperings. Plus KJ is equally important to the narrative of the Horde and their invasions. He arranged their corruption by proxy of Ner'zhul (and later Gul'dan) and pointed the orcs at the Draenei as a weapon. Then when that had been sorted, they got coopted for a campaign into Azeroth.


The player character has to be first at this point


player character is only really good at watching the real heroes do shit in cutscenes and participating in genocides for 13 gold. they never really accomplish anything interesting


for me; it was arthas, thrall, gul'dan, sargeras, n'zoth.


Medivh, Arthas, Gul'Dan, Malfurion and Sargeras


The First Ones for creating the Shadowlands and regular reality, and the Firster Ones for creating the First Ones, naturally.