This article contains lore taken from Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness, Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal, the manuals, and official bonus maps.


The alabaster parapets of Lordaeron's capital loom before you in the distance. The proud, defiant armies of the Alliance stand resolute in their final, fleeting moments.

All that remains is the shrill, clarion call to battle and the fulfillment of our destiny. The tides of darkness are now at hand!


  • Destroy all that you behold in the name of the Horde!



In preparation for the impending attack, King Terenas ordered his guards to try to get all the people, and their belongings behind city walls. Many had abandoned their homes with little but the clothes on their back and tools and other professions they had on them when they fled. They knew their homes would be destroyed, and would have to be rebuilt later. He had few men to defend the city walls, as most had left with Lothar, as the king had not expected the Horde to attack the city.[4] (ToD 265)

The Horde offensive

Urok Scratcher and his commander were among the forces sent to destroy Capital City. Urok's unit chose to again rely on dragons to sack most of the capital. The most suitable site for the roosts was on the island where their troops had already made a successful landing. Though they already had a base started, the encampment soon fell to a constant stream of raiders. So new construction began near the mine on the island. This was far enough inland that only gryphons could harass the base, and those were taken care of by numerous guard towers and trolls.[5] (W2ToDOSG 204, 205)

All the structures necessary to develop dragon roosts were built first. Four roosts were launching the terrible beasts into the air. Once they had eight of them flying, their first targets were the numerous enemy troops stationed near the center of the island. For some odd reason the Alliance forces never organized a land attack. Next came their navy, which never stood a chance, it was destroyed by so many firebreathers flying together. Though the Alliance destroyers managed to bring down a few, these were replaced quickly. The assault continued with the removal of their shipyards. A protective circle of guard towers made the attacks on the center of the capital prohibitely expensive, but little was left to hinder an amphibious landing.[5] (W2ToDOSG 204, 205)

While the dragons incinerated towers and cleared a wide section of the coastline for landing, the rest of the forces constructed a shipyard and accompanying structures to produce two transports. These made a standard assault on the mainland with four catapults, seven ogres and a single peon to raise a barracks. The dragons then concentrated on mobile units, while the catapults methodically removed stationary targets near shore and later focused on the guard towers so the reptiles could focus on the interior. Urok was sure it would be an easy victory, and that it was the Horde's destiny to devour the world.[5] (W2ToDOSG 204, 205) King Terenas witnessed the Horde swarm across the lake. Some had crossed over by use of rough bridges. From his vantage point he couldn't see any siege weapons other than a log to be used as a battering ram.[4] (ToD 264)

As the orcs reached the walls, Terenas ordered the soldiers to drop hot oil on the orcs. The remaining soldiers tipped large cauldrons over the ramparts letting the boiling oil pour down the side of the walls. The oil spilled across the leading orcs, drenching them completely. They screamed in pain as it burned away their flesh. The entire front rank crumpled, writhing and twitching. A few staggered away but most were dead. The Alliance forces prepared more oil to drop on the heads of the Horde. While the oil would run after a few more attempts by the horde, they knew they had plenty of food and supplies and would be able hold out during a long siege if need be.[4] (ToD 266)

The Alliance forces under Turalyon reached the valley leading to Lordaeron. They had ridden hard, with Khadgar and cavalry, with the infantry marching behind them. They had traveled west through the foothills of Hearthglen and emerged north of Capital City, so they could swing back down and come at the city from the wide plain behind it, where the main gates were located. The Alliance forces clashed with the besieging Horde forces, the horsemen scattering the front line while the Lordaeron defenders rained arrow and fire down on the orcs. The success lasted for sometime until the overwhelming might of the Horde forced them back. The knights were forced back by the sheer number of the Horde for every orc they kill, another would appear with three more beside him. The Horde managed to push them across the river and left a portion to hold them while the rest turned to pound the city walls. Slowly the orcs started to climb up the walls and bring down the defenders one by one with ammunition started to run dangerously low.[4] (ToD 272, 273)

Meanwhile, Thoras Trollbane who led his surviving warriors to aid his old friend arrived in the mountains. Knowing that he needed to do something quick to prevent the whole Horde from arriving into Lordaeron, the Stromgarde king personally led his soldiers to attack and block the passes. Though the Horde already had the strength enough to storm the city, this small action would prove to be deadly later.[4] (ToD 266,267, 268)

At Lordaeron, the battle raged even fiercer and the gates were starting to crack. Terenas ordered the gates to be blocked with everything they had, knowing that they were not going to hold for long.[4] (ToD 280, 281)

Alliance victory

Just as the gates were about to fall, Doomhammer received news that Gul'dan had taken the rest of Horde across the sea. The warchief saw that despite the fact that the city was about to fall, he had already lost a large number of his standing troops. Desperate, he quickly ordered his reserves to the field only to find them already slaughtered by Stromgardian knights and warriors. Though knowing that they did not have the numbers to stand against the Alliance, Doomhammer nevertheless ordered the Blacktooth Grin, which provided a bulk of the standing troops to track down Gul'dan, hoping that he had done the right thing.[4] (ToD 282, 285, 286)

This action was all the Alliance needed and the human knights and elven rangers crossed the bridge clashing with the surviving orcs. With no sign of reinforcement and cornered by the Alliance and Lordaeron forces on one side and Stromgarde troops on the other, the standing orc forces retreated. The Alliance had won.[4] (ToD 322, 323)

Horde victory (original ending)

WC2BnE logo 16x42 This section concerns content exclusive to Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness.

Orcs and trolls entered the Capital City, they killed every human, proceeded to the Throne Room and assassinated King Terenas, then red dragons burned down the keep.[6]

Victory for the Horde

The victory pyres burn high into the twilight skies covering the ruined capital of Lordaeron. Your success has led Orgrim Doomhammer - War Chief of the Orcish Hordes - to elevate you to the station of Warlord, thus giving you power and the command of your own clan. The Alliance has finally been crushed, with all those surviving being slain and cremated as is dictated by the rituals. At long last Azeroth and all of its lands belong to the thunderous force known to those foolish enough to stand in its way as the Horde!

Reference list

  1. ^ According to Tides of Darkness novel
  2. ^ Stopping Horde reinforcements (ToD 267, 286)
  3. ^  (ToD 274, 275)
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h ToD, 265
  5. ^ a b c W2ToDOSG, 204, 205
  6. ^ Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness ending Horde cinematic.
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