The Traitor King
Leader of the Scourge nerubians, Majordomo to the Lich King, former king of Azjol-Nerub
- "I was king of this empire once, long ago. In life I stood as champion. In death I returned as conqueror. Now I protect the kingdom once more. Ironic, yes?"
Anub'arak was the last king of the nerubian empire of Azjol-Nerub. He was among the nerubians slaughtered in the War of the Spider and later raised by Ner'zhul the Lich King as undead to do his bidding.
Before his death
The former king of Azjol-Nerub, Anub'arak was among the nerubians slaughtered in the War of the Spider. One of his most loyal commanders was Anub'Rekhan. Ner'zhul the Lich King raised the high lords of the Spider Kingdom as undead to do his bidding, Anub'arak among them.
As a malicious crypt lord, he was forced to use his powers to purge the snow-swept landscape of any remaining resistance to the reign of the Lich King. Despite the pleas from his former subjects, he was ordered to massacre many nerubians who tried to oppose the undead.
The Road to Damnation
In this story the crypt lord is called a majordomo by Kel'Thuzad.
The Race to Icecrown
This section concerns content exclusive to Warcraft III.
Anub'arak was sent south to meet Arthas Menethil when he arrived in Northrend. Anub'arak saved the dark prince from an attack by blood elves, before he introduced himself and told Arthas of Ner'zhul's plans. Anub'arak helped Arthas to establish a base, and then masterminded the attack on the blue dragon Sapphiron. Anub'arak told Arthas that it would take far too long to fight their way through Kael'thas and Vashj's expansive forces, and formulated a plan to go through the underground ruins of Azjol-Nerub to reach Icecrown, but warned that it would be a perilous journey.
Anub'arak led Arthas into the ruined Spider Kingdom, negating many perilous traps along the way, but all the while, he fought many of his former subjects, the living nerubians, who called him the traitor king for serving the Lich King, who had destroyed Azjol-Nerub.
As they entered the kingdom, they encountered survivors of Muradin's expedition, now led by Baelgun, who reported that an ancient evil had been released beneath the kingdom, and that they would not allow any to open the Inner Kingdom's doors. Anub'arak and Arthas defeated the troublesome dwarves and broke into the Inner Kingdom. Soon, they came upon the evil the dwarves had spoken of - the Faceless Ones - strange, malformed creatures who had been imprisoned beneath the earth in ages long forgotten. They even faced off with a Forgotten one, a creature of great power and resilience.
Upon entering the Upper Kingdom, an earthquake separated Anub'arak from Arthas, and Anub'arak and his minions dug fervently through the rubble to get to Arthas before he killed himself in one of the many booby traps laden throughout the halls of Azjol-Nerub's Inner Kingdom. Impressed at Arthas' resilience, when he found him, Anub'arak quickly ushered him out of Azjol-Nerub and to the surface, where they were immediately engaged with Illidan Stormrage and his servants in a battle for the Frozen Throne.
Anub'arak was quick to the battle, defending Arthas as he magically activated the four obelisks surrounding Icecrown's pinnacle. Finally, all four were active, and Anub'arak stood by as Arthas climbed the stairs to his destiny.
Wrath of the Lich King
This section concerns content exclusive to Wrath of the Lich King.
- Main article: Anub'arak (tactics)
Anub'arak made his home in the once proud underland of Azjol-Nerub. Since his betrayal, he has twisted and perverted his former homeland into the wretched squalor it is today. He ruled over an army of undead nerubians who, like their leader, have pledged themselves to serving the Lich King.
Trial of the Crusader
- Main article: Anub'arak (Coliseum tactics)
Following his defeat in Azjol-Nerub, Anub'arak was resurrected by the Lich King (again) and enhanced with frost-related powers. He was sent to plague the Argent Tournament, and resides within the the Icy Depths beneath the Crusaders' Coliseum, where he serves as the final encounter during the Trials of the Crusader and Grand Crusader.
Road to Damnation
- Anub'arak: The nerubian race, yes. Then the master came. As his influence spread, we made war upon him, foolishly believing we stood a chance. Many of us were slain and raised into undeath. In life I was a king. Today I am a crypt lord.
- Kel'Thuzad: In return for immortality, you agreed to serve him. Remarkable.
- Anub'arak: 'Agreed' implies choice.
Warcraft III quotes
- Main article: Quotes of Warcraft III/Undead Scourge#Anub'arak
- The Lich King sent me to aid you, death knight. I am Anub'arak, ancient king of the Azjol-Nerub.
- Many of us who fell during the War of the Spider were brought back to serve the Lich King. These warriors, however, never died. Foolishly, they still fight to liberate Nerub from the Scourge.
- Nerubian: Look, brothers! The traitor king!
- King Arthas: Who? Me?
- Anub'arak: He is referring to me, death knight.
- Anub'arak: They are the horrors the dwarves spoke of. I thought they were only legends.
- King Arthas: What?
- Anub'arak: They are the Faceless Ones...
- It cannot be...A Forgotten One. Look to your defenses, death knight! Fight as you've never fought before!
- I see now why the Lich King chose you as his champion, death knight. Few men could have survived this labyrinth alone.
World of Warcraft quotes
- Main article: Anub'arak_(tactics)#Quotes
- Main article: Anub'arak (Trial of the Crusader tactics)#Quotes
Servitude to the Lich King
Anub'arak appeared to be an unwilling slave to the Lich King.
In Road to Damnation, when Kel'Thuzad remarked that Anub'arak had agreed to give himself to the Scourge in exchange for immortality, he answered: "'Agreed' implies choice." After that, Kel'Thuzad realized that the Lich King can compel obedience from the undead. In Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, Arthas detected the vaguest stirring of resentment in Anub'arak's voice. He speculated that Anub'arak served only because he had to, and would turn on the Lich King if he was able to do so.
In Azjol-Nerub, his quote upon death is, "Ahhh... RAAAAAGH! Never thought... I would be free of him...", confirming the previous statements.
Anub'arak was raised again following his defeat at Azjol-Nerub by the Lich King to kill the champions of the Crusaders' Coliseum. He appeared grateful to serve his master once again, though this may have been forced obedience.
The living nerubians do not view those who fell defending Azjol-Nerub from the Scourge as traitors, but they frequently refer to Anub'arak as "The Traitor King". It therefore seems likely that Anub'arak betrayed his people to the Lich King (as crypt lords in general did) only to find himself regretting that decision later.
The Ultimate Visual Guide says that he was killed in the War of the Spider, raised into a crypt lord, and turned against his people in death. Although he was a servant of the Lich King, he was not a willing one.
Statements of a bigger role
Statements said before release hinted that he was going to have a bigger role:
- Salthem: Anub'Arak will also be a primary character for player interaction.
- Bornakk: ... we'd definitely like to involve Anub'Arak as a primary character outside of raiding.
- In Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, Anub'arak was voiced by Steve Blum and in World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King he's voiced by Frank Welker.
- During the Purge of Dalaran, Archmage Lan'dalock summoned images of various Wrath of the Lich King bosses, Anub'arak among them, to fight for him against the Horde.
- Anub'arak will be a playable character in Heroes of the Storm.
- Patch 3.2.0 (2009-08-04): Added as the final boss of the Crusader's Coliseum.
- Patch 3.0.3 (2008-11-04): Added as the final boss of Azjol-Nerub.
|Azjol-Nerub||Trial of the Crusader|
- ^ Ultimate Visual Guide, 169
- ^ a b c Road to Damnation
- ^ Commander Eligor Dawnbringer
- ^ a b The Return to Northrend
- ^ Into the Shadow Web Caverns
- ^ The Forgotten Ones
- ^ Ascent to the Upper Kingdom
- ^ a b A Symphony of Frost and Flame
- ^ Evelyn Fredericksen. Road to Damnation (English). Retrieved on 2009-06-30. “Which meant that the necromancer could compel obedience from the undead.”
- ^ Arthas: Rise of the Lich King, pages 288-289
- ^ "Krik'thir, guardian of the gates to Azjol-Nerub, was not a traitor. He fell in the War of the Spider defending our home from the Scourge." - Reclaimer A'zak
- ^ "Anub'arak, the traitor king, makes his home in the once proud Kingdom of Azjol-Nerub." - Reclaimer A'zak
- ^ Warcraft III - Undead -> Units > Crypt Lord
- ^ Salthem. Information on Northrend (English). Retrieved on 2009-06-30. “Anub'Arak will also be a primary character for player interaction.”
- ^ Bornakk. Re: Anub'Arak and Other Cryptlords (English). Retrieved on 2009-06-30. “We are focused on developing the Death Knight right now and have no information on further hero classes, we’d definitely like to involve Anub’Arak as a primary character outside of raiding. :)”
Ruler of Azjol-Nerub