"I am the King of Stormwind and no one, not the naga, nor the Scourge, nor the fiery lords of the Burning Legion will keep me from my people!"

Varian Wrynn, also known as Lo'Gosh the "Ghost Wolf",[2] is the son of the late King Llane Wrynn and the current King of Stormwind.[3] Following his disappearance en route to a diplomatic conference with the Horde, Varian's ten-year-old son Anduin Wrynn was named king in his place.[4] (LoC 46) However, events have led to his eventual return to his homeland and his rightful throne. He has become a major player in the Warcraft universe; a dynamic human character who has replaced the human heroes that are either old, dead, or super-villains. He has even been described as the "anti-Thrall".[5] Leading the recent campaigns against the Scourge of Northrend and the Forsaken of Lordaeron, he has solidified his status as the undisputed military leader of the Alliance.


The First War


Young Varian in the burning streets of Stormwind.

Varian Wrynn was born to King Llane Wrynn in the Kingdom of Azeroth and as a youth lived a joyful and prosperous life as prince of Stormwind. But all that changed when the orcs appeared from beyond the Dark Portal and attempted to destroy his homeland, thus ushering in the First War between his beloved Kingdom of Azeroth and the Horde.

Anduin Lothar, the Champion of Stormwind, rallied his countrymen and armies and gutted out a desperate attempt to hold the Horde at bay and to keep them away from King Llane, Varian, and Stormwind. While Lothar enjoyed some small success in holding back the Horde, his efforts were dashed when Garona Halforcen, who had become an ally to Stormwind, betrayed King Llane under orders from the Shadow Council and cut his heart out, giving it to Gul'dan. Varian could only watch helplessly as his father was murdered and the Horde overran his kingdom, burning its homes and slaughtering all who stood in their way.[6] The death of his father affected him greatly, his later closest friend Arthas Menethil recalls him looking weary and ragged when he first sees him, and says that he'd "lost absolutely everything but his life." [7] (Arthas 25)

Exodus to Lordaeron

Anduin Lothar, convinced that Stormwind could not be retaken, gathered Varian and all who remained in the city and led an escape from their homeland. Narrowly escaping by boat into the sea, they headed North while Lothar gathered his thoughts aboard his ship. Consulting with Varian and the Kirin Tor mage Khadgar, they determined that in order to preserve humanity from annihilation by the Horde they would need to warn King Terenas, ruler of Lordaeron, of the danger that loomed on the horizon.

After landing at the port of Southshore Lothar gathered Prince Varian along with Khadgar and several knights and marched towards Lordaeron. Upon arriving young Varian was greeted by King Terenas, who treated him as an equal king despite Varian's young age. King Terenas quickly offered him his pledge to stand by him until his homeland was retaken and invited him to stay with him for as long as he was willing. Although at first Varian was slightly shy being in a Kingdom he had never seen before, he quickly overcame his timidity and Varian found King Terenas' son Arthas Menethil, who was just a few years younger than he, as a great new friend and the two quickly formed a close friendship. Shortly after he began staying in Lordaeron, King Terenas formed the Alliance of Lordaeron. Under the command of Anduin Lothar, its supreme commander, this alliance was finally able to put an end to the Horde reign during the Second War. However, the victory came at a great price as Anduin Lothar was killed shortly before the war ended and would not live to see the retaking of his Kingdom of Stormwind.[8]

Friendship with Arthas

After taking up shelter in Lordaeron, Varian quickly became friends with Arthas Menethil who was anxious to meet another young prince.[7] (Arthas 25) Though most of the time he kept his composure, Varian once broke into tears as Arthas tried to console him about the assassination of his father. He was later recalled by Arthas as his "best friend" for much of their childhood and adult lives, and Varian frequently sparred with the less-athletic Arthas in an attempt to toughen him and make him a better paladin. They build up a friendly rivalry, and a year after Varian was crowned king, they met and sparred on the day of Arthas' ascension to the Order of the Silver Hand.[7] (Arthas 56) Though not outwardly spiteful, Arthas frequently lamented that he was not as physically strong as Varian. During the later murder of King Terenas, Arthas recalled words that Varian once said about how King Llane was "stabbed right through the heart" moments before he plunged Frostmourne through his own father's heart. After Arthas' falling in with the Scourge and rise to become the new Lich King, Varian began to see him as the ultimate traitor to the Alliance.

Rise as king


Varian holding Tiffin as she dies.

With Stormwind retaken and slowly being rebuilt (thanks to King Terenas, who had urged the Alliance to help fund the rebuilding of Stormwind), Varian was officially crowned King of Stormwind at the age of eighteen. King Terenas himself was well-pleased with how Varian had grown into a clever and noble King, feeling a father's pride as he had grown attached to Varian over the years, considering Varian his second son. The Stonemasons, led by Edwin VanCleef, came to lend their help in rebuilding Stormwind and hoped to forge a new future for themselves, with aspirations that riches would soon follow their work's completion. After many months Stormwind was finished, reborn as a kingdom of majesty and architectural brilliance eclipsing even its once-pristine condition before the First War. It was during this time of renewed tranquility that Varian would marry a young, beautiful woman named Tiffin and conceive a son, Anduin, named for Lothar.

However, the Alliance soon began fracturing, and the elven Kingdom of Quel'Thalas, along with the human kingdoms of Stromgarde and Gilneas seceded. Despite this, King Varian vowed he would stand by King Terenas and the Alliance as they had stood by him in his time of need. It was also during this time that the Stonemasons who had rebuilt Stormwind demanded to be paid for their service to King Varian and the House of Nobles. However, the corrupt House of Nobles, under the influence of Katrana Prestor, refused to adequately pay the guild for its work. King Varian was unable to negotiate a resolution because the nobility held too much political power and outmaneuvered him repeatedly.[9] (DF #?) Though the Stonemasons were compensated for their work, they received a fraction of the pay they had earned, and so Edwin VanCleef and the Stonemasons set to rioting in the streets of Stormwind, demanding just compensation. The riot was dangerous and chaotic and in the confusion Varian's young queen was brutally murdered. Edwin VanCleef fled Stormwind with the Stonemasons while Varian mourned Tiffin's death. He fell into a great depression but over time regained his determination and vowed to continue to create a new and better world for himself, his son and the people of Stormwind.


After the dust had settled from the Third War, Varian journeyed to Theramore to speak with Lady Jaina Proudmoore regarding Horde/Alliance relations. En route, he was abducted by the Defias who had been told of his diplomatic trip through a spy rumored to live within the Kingdom of Stormwind itself. Rumors circulated that he was taken to Alcaz Island and was held captive there.[10] (APG #?) These rumors were true.

Shortly after King Varian was kidnapped, Bolvar Fordragon was made Regent-Lord of Stormwind and vowed to find and rescue King Varian at any cost. Lady Prestor also became a royal advisor, and convinced Highlord Bolvar to have King Varian's 10-year-old son, Anduin Wrynn, crowned King of Stormwind, though the actual power remained in Fordragon's hands until either Varian was returned or Anduin reached the age of ascension.


WoW-comic-logo-16x68 This section concerns content exclusive to the World of Warcraft: The Comic or other Warcraft-related comics.
Stranger in a Strange Land

An amnesiac Varian Wrynn, as seen at the beginning of Issue #1.

Lo'Gosh TCG

Lo'Gosh in the Trading Card Game.

WoW Comic 1 0-a (artwork)

Lo'Gosh the gladiator, wearing the belt of Anduin Lothar.

Varian somehow managed to escape his confinement and leave the island, though his bid for freedom was not wholly successful. Half-drowned and suffering from memory loss, he was found washed up on the shores of Durotar by a caravan of orcs led by the gladiator trainer Rehgar Earthfury. After successfully fighting off an enormous crocolisk using only a stick, he was captured and enslaved as a gladiator by the impressed shaman. Unaware of the human's true identity, Earthfury humorously nicknamed his new slave "Croc-Bait" and threw him into a cage with his other two gladiator slaves: Broll Bearmantle and Valeera Sanguinar. That night, in order to help him remember his past, Broll placed Varian in a trance, wherein he saw a vision of himself as a child in a burning city.

After arriving in Orgrimmar, Rehgar led the trio to the secret armory of the Crimson Ring in the Hall of Legends, where, after seeing a familiar-looking lion-headed plate belt, Varian received another flashback: a bald, bearded man stands on the deck of a boat in a storm, wearing the belt and called Varian "lad."

Eventually the three traveled to Dire Maul in Feralas where the gladiatorial contests took place. After a bloody battle, they emerged the victors. Impressed by Varian's skill at arms, the crowd gave him the orcish moniker "Lo'Gosh" — which means "Ghost Wolf".[11]

After the fight, Rehgar took Lo'Gosh and Broll to the tauren city Thunder Bluff for a cleansing ritual in the Pools of Vision. In the waters of the pools Lo'Gosh saw another vision: a fair-haired female who was ostensibly his wife holding an infant boy, telling him that his people and his son need him. Unfortunately, his vision was interrupted by a cave elemental which he subsequently defeated. Nevertheless, having learned more of his past, he planned to escape from Rehgar at the next possible opportunity.

In thanks for defeating the cave elemental, Broll and Lo'Gosh were invited to the tent of Hamuul Runetotem, elder druid of the tauren. He told Varian the legend of the original Lo'Gosh — a massive, white wolf-beast renowned for its ferocity in battle, already 10,000 years old when the Burning Legion first invaded Azeroth. According to the arch druid, the wolf's legend extended through Azeroth to trolls, goblins and dwarves who all had their own version of the story. In each tale, Lo'Gosh's unyielding will and sheer ferocity enabled him to push through the boundaries of the afterlife to aid his people. Hamuul then gave Lo'Gosh a feather, which Broll immediately recognized as belonging to a hippogryph. The night elf used it to call Sharptalon from Ashenvale, and immediately made a bid for freedom with Lo'Gosh.

Broll and Lo'Gosh eventually reached the Cenarion Enclave in Darnassus, and were summoned to dinner by Tyrande Whisperwind. Tyrande sent the two to Theramore, where Jaina Proudmoore would be able to help restore his memories.

Upon arriving in Theramore, Jaina vowed to Lo'Gosh that she would unravel the mystery surrounding him, and called upon her chamberlain, Aegwynn, to help. Breaching the dark aura surrounding Lo'Gosh's memories, visions revealed a fire and a voyage, the birth of his son, the death of his wife, and new darkness. Despite an invisible wall preventing Jaina and Aegwynn from further delving into his memories, they were able to confirm that he had been traveling to Theramore, and that he was, in fact, Varian Wrynn, the Lost King of Stormwind.

Clearly having been the victim of a dark magic attack, Jaina prepared one of her own ships to carry Varian to Stormwind in the Eastern Kingdoms, where she hoped that he could learn the identity of his enemies. Now knowing that his wife is dead, Varian was eager to return to Stormwind and reunite with his son, though Aegwynn advised him that circumspection was necessary, as Anduin could be endangered by any hasty actions. On the docks, Broll and Varian reunited with Valeera and prepared to set out for Stormwind.


While Varian, Broll, and Valeera were traveling on the Wavecutter — Jaina Proudmoore's private vessel — Varian contemplated the revelations Jaina had told him. Despite being revealed as one of the rulers of the Alliance, he became unsure if he truly wanted to resume being "Varian Wrynn" — if he had a choice, he would remain as "Lo'Gosh", a simple gladiator. Doubts began to fill Varian's head as they traveled to Menethil Harbor.

During a naga attack at sea, Varian had another glimpse into his lost memory — remembering the Defias abducting him on his diplomatic mission to Theramore, the naga attacking him on Alcaz Island for ransom, the funeral for his beloved wife Tiffin, and the day he was crowned King of Stormwind. Almost all of Varian's memory had been returned, except some vital parts of his abduction.

Jubilant throngs of Stormwind's subjects turned out for a massive ceremony to welcome home their king. However, the Varian that returned was arrogant, frivolous, and markedly interested in Katrana Prestor. The people of Stormwind had only been informed that Defias had ransomed the king, a ransom paid with a painful new tax. Upon his return, however, Varian seemed concerned only with spending more of his people's money, leaving affairs of state by the wayside. Anduin Wrynn was distressed by his father's change.

Around the same time, Lo'gosh appeared at Menethil Harbor with Broll and Valeera. The group had a chance encounter with a drunkard in Menethil Harbor, who ran after realizing that Varian was still alive. Varian and his companions gave chase with the intent of having "a conversation." The man ran to a bar filled with Defias members, who attempted to take out Varian again. During the fight, Varian met Thargas Anvilmar an emissary from Magni Bronzebeard whose brother had once trained the king.

Though the drunk escaped, Varian found a defias mage to question. Though the mage did not reveal who wanted Varian dead, he said that the person had paid in Stormwind gold. The mage mocked Varian by claiming that his son would be murdered. The three gladiators and Thargas then continued on their way to Stormwind.

A few days later in Stormwind City, King Magni Bronzebeard was on a visit and was discussing war plans against the orcs and Dark Iron dwarves with king "Varian" and Bolvar Fordragon. However, Varian Wrynn did not want to send troops to help the dwarves against the dark irons. King Magni left disappointed but while going to the Deeprun Tram he was met by the young prince Anduin Wrynn who told the dwarven king he too suspected something about his "father".

Some time later, as Anduin was practicing his archery with his "father" and inquired him how he was kidnapped by the Defias, and wondered how he came in the hands of the Naga for a ransom, to which his father told him his past was blank and he could not recall any events.

Upon arriving at Ironforge, Lo'Gosh was informed by King Magni that much of what had transpired was no coincidence and that someone was secretly orchestrating the events, knowing of Varian's significant importance to the Alliance. Magni had previously enlisted the aid of Highlord Bolvar Fordragon and Marshal Windsor at the behest of young Anduin, who suspected the Varian in Stormwind to be a imposter. Varian, having studied sword fighting with Windsor for years, held a deep respect for him as a friend and ally. A disturbingly short time after Marshal Windsor began his investigation, he had come to the conclusion that the imposter Varian may not only be an imposter, but a dragon.

As Varian and Magni continued to converse they were secretly being followed by a bearded man. Valeera sensed arcane energy being manipulated and witnessed the man creating a dagger with the intent to kill Varian. Valeera quickly subdued the man, but he transformed into a black dragon and fled.

Outside Stormwind, Anduin, Varian, Bolvar, and Lady Prestor were riding horseback through the countryside with Anduin trying to implore his father to listen to Stormwind's problems, but before he could elaborate, his horse was purposely roused by an unknown assailant causing Anduin to lose control and tumble over a ledge, Varian swiftly caught Anduin, and upon making physical contact, his mind is enveloped with visions of the Defias carrying him while knocked out, strapped to the ground and covered in a rune-circle with robed figures casting dark magic, being chased on Alcaz Island by naga, and finally jumping over a cliff reaching for branches just beyond his reach.

Anduin, embracing his father, lost any doubts about him being an imposter. Varian started to tell Bolvar, Anduin, and Lady Prestor about his visions until Lady Prestor touched him and remarked how astonished she was by his nobility. Bolvar surmised that Varian becomes befuddled when around her and loses his honor and respect for others and becomes more anxious in discovering the secrets of Varian's abduction and sudden return knowing this would lead to trouble.

Via magic, Bolvar informed King Magni that Windsor's report indicated he was close to discovering the dragon's identity but was captured by Dark Iron dwarves in Blackrock Depths. Varian and his allies mounted and rode to Blackrock Depths and rescued Windsor, who revealed to Varian what he had discovered regarding his investigation.

Return as King

King Varian Wrynn Fight

Fighting a dragonspawn

Lo'Gosh Varian

The two Varians.

Marching through the gates of Stormwind, Lo'Gosh and his friends were halted by General Marcus Jonathan under the direct jurisdiction of Katrana Prestor, who ordered their immediate arrest and execution as traitors. Windsor succeeded in convincing Marcus of his loyalty to Stormwind as they had previously served together under Turalyon.

Katrana Prestor hastily gathered soldiers only to have the false-Varian tell her that she was disobeying the chain of command and was not in charge of Stormwind. Entering Stormwind Keep, Lo'gosh declared Katrana's masquerade was over and called her by her true name, Onyxia.

Revealing her dragon form and transforming multiple guards into dragonspawn, Varian and his allies began battle in the great hall of Stormwind Keep. The arrival of Highlord Bolvar Fordragon along with Anduin greatly aided them in securing the keep but Reginald Windsor was killed moments later by Onyxia.

Lo'gosh engaged his doppelganger, claiming he threatened the stability of his kingdom and nearly cost the Alliance Thandol Span, only to have his doppelganger retort he was starting to repress her spells and regain control of his actions. Anduin, surprised by seeing two Varians, urged them to stop fighting to face the true threat, the brood mother Onyxia. The great dragon snatched Anduin and teleported them to her lair daring Varian to follow suit. Regrouping with his friends Varian was left to grieve the loss of his son and told his friends the final battle would end in Onyxia's Lair .

Relinquishing command of Stormwind to Bolvar, his old friend begins to sense that despite two Varian's commanding Stormwind, they both carried polar opposite personalities. Lo'Gosh was incredibly anxious to find his son while showing incredible will in commanding his troops, while the other Varian was calm, passive and charming ever since ridding himself of Onyxia's influence.

Arriving in Theramore, they all met up with Jaina and she told them she had discovered what dark magic was used on them in an old tome. Jaina came up with the theory that Onyxia greatly gained influence with Varian after his wife's death but periodically lost control as Varian's attachment to Anduin grew and so she attempted to reassert her control by using a spell that would not kill Varian but would remove and destroy his conscience, will and responsibility.

Jaina casted enchantments around the two Varians and they recalled the last part of their abduction: Being on Alcaz Island tied to the ground, cloaked figures casting dark magic causing unbearable pain as he desperately tries to break himself free. In a blinding flash of light he awakes to find himself laying next to an exact duplicate. Onyxia unmasked herself intending to kill the strong-willed Varian but is stopped by the arrival of Morgala Darksquall and her naga. The cloaked figures and Onyxia turn into dragonkin and battle the naga while the strong-willed Varian breaks himself free and begins to fight. He tried to free the other Varian and implores him to find a weapon but discovered his other is too unnerved to properly wield a weapon.

The other Varian is knocked off a cliff, falls into the ocean and is captured by the naga. Varian is left alone to fight and tricks Onyxia into believing she had killed him. Pleased, Onyxia left before more naga appeared. Morgala attempted to capture Varian but he fled to another side of the island and jumped into the ocean, knowing he wouldn't be followed as that part of the ocean contained many rocky shoals. His escape failed, however, as the strong tide overpowered him and he's swept away to the shores of Durotar.

Back in Jaina's tower both Varians came to the startling conclusion they are both the same person and at the same time only half of what they should be. Jaina explained that although Onyxia's spell split them in half, they were both able to fight past the spell and regain who they truly were, even though they both lived as separate beings.

One Varian became Lo'Gosh, the gladiator champion of the Crimson Ring and fought to regain his memories and birthright. The other Varian was ransomed and returned to Stormwind, and was further ensorcelled by Onyxia. While bereft of will, he would break free once again. After a moment, Jaina unveiled two ancient elven swords, Shalla'tor the Shadow Render and Ellemayne the Reaver. After receiving their new weapons, both Varians decreed retribution would finally be brought to Onyxia.

Corruption Ends

Leading an assault against Onyxia, both Varians engage her in battle. Weapons and magic clash with her numerous dragonkin with both sides determined to win. Onyxia casts a fear spell on Broll and tail swipes Jaina, removing them from the battle after growing agitated by their constant spellcasting.

Becoming desperate to end the fight Onyxia begins casting an enchantment she was using on Alcaz Island to kill Lo'Gosh, but Lo'Gosh's double responds by stepping in front of the blast, saying he should die because Lo'Gosh was the embodiment of the true Varian.

Not willing to sacrifice his double, Lo'Gosh leaps alongside his other self hoping to save him. The magic spell becomes disrupted having the two Varians in the same radius and causes a fusion between the two. After a moment of silence one Varian emerges.

Proclaiming he was restored at last, Onyxia desperately tries to incinerate him, but Varian swiftly reaches Onyxia's head and impales her with his elven swords. With Onyxia dead Varian reunites with his son and friends, telling them their long and noble deeds will be rewarded and Stormwind will be reborn with a new hope for the future.[12]

World of Warcraft

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Appearance prior to patch 1.9.0.

Until patch 1.9.0, players could witness the king in his captivity in the sewer dungeons of Alcaz Island just north of Theramore, though he was not involved in any quests at the time. With patch 1.10, Varian was replaced with an elite level 62 myrmidon named Tidelord Rrurgaz and a sewer full of elite naga, and Alcaz Island became home to Doctor Weavil, a major part of the Gates of Ahn'Qiraj world event.

The comic series suggests that this Varian was the "twin" which did not manage to escape during the arrival of Doctor Weavil, immediately following Onyxia's sorcery which had split him in two, but was instead the Varian captured by the naga, and later ransomed back to Stormwind into the hands of Lady Katrana Prestor.

Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath-Logo-Small This section concerns content exclusive to Wrath of the Lich King.

Return to Stormwind

Varian Wrynn has been restored to his rightful throne as the King of Stormwind. He is currently located in the Throne Room within Stormwind Keep, an area previously occupied by his son, Anduin Wrynn. King Varian is now the proper Stormwind faction leader and gives many of the Alliance-specific quests formerly given by Bolvar Fordragon, including the questchain to assassinate Nathanos Blightcaller. In addition, he now ends the death knight quest Neutral 15 [55] Where Kings Walk.

Soon after regaining his throne, Stormwind was attacked by the undead legions of the Scourge. Varian, alongside his friend Bolvar, was successful in repelling the undead forces after a long battle in Stormwind Harbor. Founding the Valiance Expedition to cope with the Horde in destroying the Lich King, Varian sent Bolvar to oversee creation of base at Angrathar the Wrathgate in the Dragonblight, right in the shadow of Icecrown itself. Bolvar and Saurfang the Younger would wage war against the Lich King himself at the Wrathgate but were betrayed by the Forsaken under Grand Apothecary Putress, who unleashed the New Plague, causing the death of Bolvar and his men.

At the personal request of Highlord Tirion Fordring, King Varian permits death knights of the Ebon Blade into the Alliance to aid in the fight against the Lich King.[13]

Battle for the Undercity

King Varian Wrynn Glare 3.1


After receiving word of Bolvar's death Varian is overwhelmed with anger and sorrow, having considered Bolvar a brother ruling his kingdom and raising his son for years. He sent Jaina Proudmoore to Orgrimmar to discover the reason for the Horde's betrayal. He deemed this as an act of treason and demanded retribution for his friend's death. Jaina returned and informed Varian that Varimathras and the Royal Apothecary Society had betrayed them all and the Horde no longer controlled Undercity.

Varian and Jaina gathered the Alliance army and attacked Undercity, hoping to reclaim it as Lordaeron for the Alliance and bring Putress to justice. When entering Undercity, Varian becomes disgusted by the condition of the once great city, which he knew since childhood. Tracking Putress to the Apothecarium, Varian and Jaina defeated him. But, to Varian's horror, they also discovered dozens of mutilated and defiled human corpses, on which the Apothecary Society experimented on to create the New Plague. Realizing that, although the Alliance and Horde agreed to a small truce over the years, the Forsaken had been secretly creating a means to kill them all.

Varian confronts Thrall and declares that peace can never be achieved. When a fight breaks out between the Alliance and Horde, Jaina stops Thrall and Varian from killing each other and teleports Varian, herself and the Alliance army back to Stormwind, hoping to stop further bloodshed and chaos. After losing his friend Bolvar Fordragon, and defeating Grand Apothecary Putress, Varian appears to declare war against the Horde during the quest The Battle For The Undercity after the attack on Thrall and his forces in the Undercity.

Secrets of Ulduar

Varian Ulduar Trailer

King Varian in the Violet Citadel.

When Brann Bronzebeard learns that Yogg-Saron has escaped its ancient prison in Ulduar, Rhonin and Jaina Proudmoore request aid from King Varian, and so he asks for them to meet in the Violet Citadel. While Rhonin is speaking with King Varian, Thrall and Garrosh Hellscream arrive at the citadel and disregard Jaina's warnings to not enter the tower.

Before Rhonin is able to explain Varian turns and sees Thrall and Garrosh demanding to know what they are doing there. Garrosh insults Varian and draws his weapons, and Varian does the same before Garrosh charges at him, knocking Jaina out of the way in the process. After Rhonin breaks the fight up, he calls upon the Horde and Alliance to work together against the Old God. Varian points out that more men died from the Horde's treachery at the Wrathgate than from the Scourge, and refuses to ally with them. He appears to withhold full Alliance support, telling Rhonin he is through working with the Horde, and telling Thrall and Garrosh that he hopes the death god takes them all, before promptly teleporting out with his men.[14]

Crusaders' Coliseum

Argent Coliseum A

Varian standing next to Jaina Proudmoore in the Alliance section of the Crusaders' Coliseum

King Varian, accompanied by Jaina Proudmoore, attends tournaments at the Crusaders' Coliseum in Icecrown, surrounded by various champions and representatives of the Alliance.

Icecrown Citadel

Varian, again accompanied by Jaina, appears in Icecrown Citadel during the Alliance outro following the defeat of Deathbringer Saurfang. Muradin Bronzebeard attempts to block Varok Saurfang from claiming the body of his son, but Varian intervenes on the High Overlord's behalf, voicing his respect and honor for fellow warriors, and allows him to pass.

Some time after the opening of the Frostwing Halls, Varian can also be found in the entry hall of Light's Hammer. He provides the Strength of Wrynn buff for Alliance raiding parties. If you speak to him and tell him he is not needed, you will need to reset the instance (provided you are not already saved to it) in order to gain the buff again.


Cataclysm-Logo-Small This section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.

Varian will be a major player in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm.

The king of Stormwind, recently returned to claim his rightful place, has little love for the Horde. His reasons are many: when Varian was a young boy, he saw his father murdered by the half-orc Garona; the orcs' warchief, Orgrim Doomhammer, slew the valorous Anduin Lothar, who had delivered Varian safely to Lordaeron after the fall of Stormwind; Varian was later enslaved by the orcish gladiator trainer Rehgar Earthfury; and at the Wrath Gate, many brave Alliance soldiers died at the hands of the Forsaken's Royal Apothecary Society. Varian, who had always been wary of the orcs, discovered that the Royal Apothecary Society had been developing the new plague for years. The events that transpired during the battle for the Undercity convinced the human king that the Horde has been left unchecked for too long: the time has come to make things right.[15]


Varian can be found in several places outside of Stormwind Keep:



King Varian Wrynn.

King Varian Wrynn

In the Comic.

Varian Wrynn TCG

In the Trading Card Game.

Varian was given several voiced lines outside of the Ulduar trailer in Patch 3.2.0.


  • "Stormwind honors your service to the Alliance."
  • "I am Varian, but I am also Lo'Gosh."
  • "The line of Stormwind's kings has been restored."
  • "My open hands will reward my friends, but let my enemies beware!"
  • "Stormwind is reborn!"


  • "You want to compare scars?"
  • "You don't want to see my angry side."
  • "I'm of...two minds about all this."
  • "You must have me confused with the other Varian. He's not here anymore."
  • "Hmph...if only I were still in the Crimson Ring."


  • "Never again will our kingdom be deceived."
  • "Our struggles are far from over."
  • "Serve with honor."
  • "Fare you well."
  • "The Alliance will forge a new destiny for Azeroth!"


  • "My father tried to protect me, too. Didn't work. The realities of life have a way of intruding."[7] (Arthas 25)
  • "I wish the uprising back at home would settle itself soon. I wouldn't want anyone to be hurt."
  • "A gladiator's life is simple: You win and live, or lose and die. A king's life is more complex. The only truth for a king is that there are no easy answers."
  • "I will seek out my enemies, and woe betide those who set themselves against me."
  • "Look around you, brothers and sisters. Open your eyes! Look at what they have done to our kingdom! How much longer will we allow these savages free reign in our world?"
  • "At the Wrathgate, the Horde's partnership killed more of our men than the Scourge. I'm done with your Horde. May this death god take you all."
  • "The time has come to bring retribution for the countless souls lost in Lordaeron's fall!" [16] (TCGSW 144)
  • Stand down, Muradin. Let a grieving father pass.

Sound Scripts

/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Greeting01.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Greeting02.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Greeting03.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Greeting04.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Greeting05.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Farewell01.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Farewell02.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Farewell03.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Farewell04.wav")
/script PlaySoundFile("Sound\\Creature\\VarianWrynn\\Varian_Farewell05.wav")


There are two ways to get into Stormwind Keep but the fastest way is through the boats. Take a boat from Auberdine (presumably after taking out Velen and Tyrande) and you will end up in Stormwind Harbor. Wait till everyone is there and then run straight for the Keep without stopping. Once in the keep, pull aggro and begin the attack.

Varian in Stormwind

King Varian Wrynn within Stormwind Keep.

In-game, King Varian Wrynn is a Warrior who resides inside of Stormwind Keep. There are several level 80 elite guards on the incline to his throne, as well as ten surrounding him; they will all aggro when he does. While in combat, he has been known to randomly summon level 75 non-elite guards to his side, though this ability may be tied to the Throne Room itself (further making kiting him away a solid strategy), as Highlord Bolvar Fordragon could do the same thing, though no such ability was listed in his arsenal. King Varian's listed abilities include:

  • Ability heroicleap  Heroic Leap - "Leap through the air and slam down on all enemies within 5 yards of the target area, causing 50% weapon damage and stunning them for 2 sec."
  • Ability whirlwind  Whirlwind 1 - "Attacks nearby enemies in a whirlwind of steel that inflicts 100% weapon damage."
  • Ability whirlwind  Whirlwind 2 - "Attacks nearby enemies in a whirlwind of steel that lasts 0 sec. and inflicts double damage."

Note that King Varian Wrynn is the only NPC (aside from Overthane Balargarde) to retain Heroic Leap from Wrath of the Lich King beta testing phase, as it was deemed generally too powerful of an attack. Because of the physical Area Effect damage caused by his Whirlwind, cloth wearers should keep their distance. The Alliance Battlemasters are in the room immediately behind King Varian, and can often supply a steady supply of Alliance players to defend him. Like Thrall with Horde players, Alliance players are very likely to come to aid their king if he is attacked and any action that might alert them is inadvisable. Killing him is the objective of the Money achievement Storming Stormwind achievement.


Varian Wrynn Statue

Valiance Keep Monument

A statue of King Varian, alias Lo'Gosh, stands in Valiance Keep in the Borean Tundra:

In tribute to King Varian Wrynn
known to some as LO'GOSH the "Ghost Wolf"

His miraculous return from long years of exile and hardship has ignited a new fire of spirit and courage within the Alliance.

We shall march boldly into these perilous lands holding his valor and his tenacity in our hearts.

- Highlord Bolvar Fordragon


  • Varian's belt was previously worn by Anduin Lothar.[17]
  • Varian wields a legendary blade called Shalamayne, which was created from a fusion of Shalla'tor the Shadow Render and Ellemayne the Reaver. He uses this weapon in the comic book, in the Secrets of Ulduar trailer, in the BattleCry mosaic, in the novel Stormrage, and in World of Warcraft (as of 3.3.3).
  • In World of Warcraft, Varian wielded two Cruel Barbs (in beta), two Quel'Serrar blades (until 3.1.0), and then two swords that looked like Shalamayne (until 3.3.3).

Notes and Trivia

Lo'Gosh Action Figure

Official action figure.

  • Varian's name was originally Varien, as recorded in the Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal manual. It was retconned to Varian in Warcraft III. When spelled with an "a", there is the implication that Varian was named after his grandmother, Queen Varia.
  • King Varian Wrynn is the only racial leader in the World of Warcraft with a completely unique model. Even Sylvanas Windrunner shares most of her geometry with her base model, the blood elf female. He is also the only racial leader, and the fourth signifigant character to have a full set of quotes (greetings, annoyed, and farewell), the others before him include The Lich King, Tirion Fordring, and Darion Mograine. Before Patch 3.2 he had the default human voice.
  • Varian is voiced by Chris Metzen. Ironically, Metzen is also the voice of Thrall.
  • The statistics in Lands of Conflict for Anduin Wrynn actually refer to king Varian Wrynn.[18] (WoWRPGCD 11)



External links

Stormwind Keep Argent Tournament Grounds Undercity (Alliance) Undercity (Horde)
Crusaders' Coliseum Light's Hammer Deathbringer's Rise
Preceded by:
Llane Wrynn I
Anduin Lothar (Regent Lord of Azeroth)
King of Azeroth
Succeeded by:
Anduin Wrynn
Bolvar Fordragon (Regent Lord of Stormwind)
Preceded by:
Anduin Wrynn
Bolvar Fordragon (Regent Lord of Stormwind)
King of Stormwind
Succeeded by:
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