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This article is about the history, geography of the world of prime universe's Draenor up to its destruction. For the history after its destruction, see Outland.
For the parallel, alternate timeline's Draenor featured in Warlords of Draenor, see Draenor (Warlords of Draenor).
NeutralDraenor, The Red World
Draenor color PlayStation.jpg
Draenor as seen in the PlayStation version of Warcraft II.



Draenor [ˈdɹænɔɹ] was the homeworld of the orcish race and the last refuge of the draenei before their arrival on Azeroth. When the orc shaman Ner'zhul recklessly opened dimensional portals to find new worlds to conquer, Draenor was torn apart and believed completely lost. However, a large fragment of the world remained intact. That fragment is known today as Outland.


Draenor was a fertile and large world dominated by vast plains and lush swamps. Originally, there were many intelligent races, like the arakkoa, an ancient race of bird-like humanoids, the giant ogres and their brutal gronn masters, the more peaceful race of mushroom-like sporelings and the shamanistic orcs.

Arrival of the Draenei

Nearly 200 years before the First War, the draenei settled upon this remote world that seemed an ideal refuge for their millenia-expanding exodus.[1][2][3] They named it Draenor[4][5] which meant "Exiles' Refuge" in their tongue; since the native orcs did not have a name for the planet, other than "world", they eventually adopted the Draenei term.[6]

The settlers quietly cultivated their society once again and kept their magic hidden, ever wary of being discovered again by the Burning Legion's forces.

Rise of the Horde

The orcs lived in a shamanistic society that was in deep harmony with the surrounding natural world, until power-hungry leaders, led and manipulated by Gul'dan, made a blood pact with Mannoroth, a general of the Burning Legion, turning the orcs into bloodthirsty barbarian conquerors. The warlock magics wielded by the orcs turned Draenor into a dusty wasteland. The orcs, under orders from Kil'jaeden, decimated the draenei, enslaved the ogres, and gained dark dominion over Draenor. Velen and a handful of draenei have survived the destruction of their cities by the orcs and fled to Zangarmarsh. There they have been hiding until recently. Before the Horde could destroy themselves in their bloodlust, Medivh and Gul'dan opened the Dark Portal, allowing the Horde access to the world of Azeroth to start a new war and pave the way for the Burning Legion's second invasion of Kalimdor.

Destruction of Draenor

Main article: Outland

Eventually the Horde was beaten back by the numerous Alliance forces, and Draenor became the focus of an attack, via the Dark Portal, by an Alliance Expedition aiming to end the orcish threat to Azeroth once and for all. In the midst of the ensuing battle the elder shaman Ner'zhul attempted to allow the remaining orcs on Draenor to escape to other worlds by opening other dimensional portals; however the presence of so many portals tore the planet apart, leaving only torn fragments of the former world floating in the Nether. It ceased to be a material world,[7] and the barely-hospitable remnants was renamed Outland.


Outposts and cities

The draenei

The Horde


This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.

In the Human Campaign of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal, the humans close the Dark Portal and save Azeroth, but must escape a crumbling Draenor by entering one of the various rifts that have been opened by Ner'zhul, who with his followers have escaped into one of these rifts. In the Orc Campaign, the orcs are victorious and Ner'zhul with his followers travel to Draenor, where they enter a rift into the Twisting Nether to gain new glory. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos does not follow either outcome directly but instead continues the story in Azeroth. It takes a bit more from the human conclusion though as the Horde were not totally victorious on Azeroth, and instead were mostly scattered or taken to internment camps.



  1. ^ Micky Neilson on Twitter
  2. ^ Rise of the Horde - "It was over two hundred summers ago that your people came here. We were not as We are now."
  3. ^ World of Warcraft: The Comic Volume 4
  4. ^ Beyond the Dark Portal - "Draenor is name they call world, yes. They proud of selves, they name whole world for selves. They strong . . . before."
  5. ^ Rise of the Horde - And they had named the world Draenor., or "Exiles' Refuge"
  6. ^ Rise of the Horde, pg. 57
  7. ^ Dungeons & Dragons Warcraft The Roleplaying Game, pg. 157