The Twilight's Hammer (a.k.a. Twilight's Hammer clan, Hammer clan, Twilight's Hammer cult, or Twilight Cult) refers to a single organization. Formerly a clan during the Second War, the current Twilight's Hammer organization is a bit different than its original form. However, no matter which form the Twilight's Hammer has taken, it has always had the ultimate purpose of bringing about Armageddon to the worlds it inhabits, and will use various means to obtain this end.
The history of the Twilight's Hammer begins with Cho'gall, the first ogre mage. Cho'gall was made the leader of an orc clan after its previous chieftain was executed for disobeying the Shadow Council. The clan's name was then changed to Twilight's Hammer; its original name and that of its former chieftain was stricken from all records. Under Cho'gall's leadership, the clan became increasingly nihilistic and eventually sought the destruction of all creation. This was true of their clan even before the orcs joined the pact with Mannoroth.
Obsessed with the notion that the Horde was the harbinger of apocalyptic doom to all the lands that it ravages, the Twilight's Hammer felt a sacrosanct gratification in the destruction of all that it encountered. Led by the cunning Ogre Mage Cho'gall, the Twilight's Hammer had strong ties to Gul'dan and the Stormreaver clan. Its loyalty to the Horde was not as strong as its belief in its sacred mission of oblivion.
After coming to Azeroth the Twilight's Hammer clan, alongside with the Bleeding Hollow clan under the leadership of Kilrogg Deadeye, led the orcish forces in the first attack on Stormwind Keep. The battle went horribly, as the Horde had not expected such resilient persistence against them. The two clan leaders blamed each other. It is possible that Kilrogg Deadeye planned the attack on Stormwind in hopes of using it to get rid of a rival clan.
Cho'gall survived the rise and fall of Blackhand, and the destruction of the Shadow Council. He served a useful purpose to Doomhammer who, with Gul'dan, wished to bring Ogres through the Portal to enforce inter-clan civility. Cho'gall was placed as overseer for the oil refineries in Grim Batol.
When Gul'dan discovered the Tomb of Sargeras, Cho'gall believed that it would herald Armageddon, and so was quick to unlock its secrets. Orgrim Doomhammer ordered the traitorous clans destroyed and while Cho'gall was thought to have been killed in the battle it later turned out that he had escaped with his remaining forces to rebuild and bide his time. Afterwards, those of the Twilight's Hammer, Stormreaver, and Blackrock clans who died in that battle kept reliving it in their undeath, until the night elf warden Maiev Shadowsong put them to rest.
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While the truth behind how this happened remains a mystery, the modern Twilight's Hammer retains the destructive nature of Cho'gall's clan, but almost nothing else. Somehow, one of the Old Gods has managed to make this clan its pawn; and since that time, the clan's numbers and power have dramatically increased. Even humans and other former members of the Alliance flock to join the service of the elemental lords and help bring about the complete destruction of Azeroth. The largest groups of the Twilight's hammer now camp near the locations where they believe the Old Gods and their minions are sealed away; many wait for C'Thun's awakening in Silithus, and others serve Ragnaros in the Blackrock Depths along side the Dark Iron dwarves.
The Twilight's Hammer clan is still seen in Azeroth. The cult was always obsessed with signs of an apocalypse — as had the clan in earlier times—and indeed often sought to bring such doom about by their actions. The Twilight's Hammer has representatives of all races among its members and employs a myriad of classes from simple warriors to Aquamancers and Shadowmages.
The organization now seems to have a strange fixation on the Old Gods, worshiping Ragnaros and seeking power from such eldritch places as Maraudon, which has very strong ties to the element of Earth, and thus may hold powers long held at rest. They also show strong resistance in Blackfathom Deeps, the submerged domain of the Old God's servant, Aku'mai, and Silithus, where savage winds blow across the desert outside the ruined city of Ahn'Qiraj, domain of mighty C'thun. They even have ambassadors among the dwarves of Blackrock Depths, in the court of Emperor Dagran Thaurissan.
In Darkshore, the Hammer may be found in the Master's Glaive, the site of a large skeleton of a dead Old God. In Ashenvale, their presence is felt most powerfully in the Blackfathom Deeps instance where they worship the ancient beast Aku'mai, favored pet of the Old Gods. Their leader there is Twilight Lord Kelris, an orc caster who sits in meditation before a statue of Queen Azshara, waiting for adventurers on the "" quest. In Ironforge, Gerrig Bonegrip founded the shop Bonegrip's Runes and Dooms for the Twilight's Hammer and assists those seeking to free Princess Myzrael, and the Forsaken Keeper Bel'dugur in Undercity secretly works for the cult. Their strong activity in Silithus might be ascribed to the presence of C'Thun, an Old God. Recently, they have been particularly active in Silithus, using the Windstones to summon powerful Elementals of the Abyssal Council, which may direct the movements of the organization.
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Following the death of C'thun by an army of mortal adventurers (assisted by trapped members of the Red, Blue and Green Dragonflights), the infamous Cho'gall himself apparently took up residence in the Temple of Ahn'Qiraj itself. He kidnapped and brainwashed Garona Halforcen to be his assassin, using her as a tool to sow seeds of distrust between the Alliance and Horde. Cho'gall intended to sacrifice Med'an, the prophesied child of three worlds, to release his dark master from his bonds. However, Med'an and his compatriots founded the New Council of Tirisfal. As the Guardian of this new Council Med'an was able to defeat Cho'gall and foil his schemes.
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The Twilight's Hammer has also made a presence in Northrend inhabiting the Dungeon of Ahn'kahet: The Old Kingdom deep in Azjol-Nerub. They appear to be drawn by the presence of the Old God Yogg-Saron and the Faceless Ones which serve him and seek to bring about their dark plans. An unknown number of Twilight Cultists inhabit the Old Kingdom and are led by Jedoga Shadowseeker, a servant of Yogg-Saron. A number of Twilight cultists are also seen within the Descent into Madness of Ulduar. Their Banner can also be seen in the Ruby Sanctum.
During the Elemental Invasion, members of the Hammer appeared under the name Doomsday Cult in Stormwind and Orgrimmar, preaching apocalypse and trying to destroy those cities. They were ultimately stopped and imprisoned .
The Shattering: Prelude to CataclysmThis section concerns content exclusive to the Warcraft novels or short stories.
In the The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm novel, it emerged that the Twilight's Hammer was responsible for two mass murder incidents in Ashenvale, in a calculated plot to sabotage any remaining relations between the Alliance and Horde. Not only were tensions between both sides increased, Hamuul Runetotem would severely be injured during the second mass murder incident. Receiving Hamuul's message and under the belief that the orcs were sent by Garrosh Hellscream, who highly disagreed with any treaty between the Alliance and the Horde, the mighty Cairne Bloodhoof would confront Garrosh. In the subsequent duel between them Cairne would lose his life due to Magatha Grimtotem, who exploited Hellscream's ignorance of his own culture. As such the Twilight Hammer is indirectly responsible for Cairne's death and in a stroke of good luck their role in Ashenvale has remained undiscovered. As such the perpetrators of the mass murder incidents have yet to be found, and have not made any in-game appearance.
CataclysmThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
The Twilight's Hammer becomes a major player in the events of the third expansion. Seduced by the promises of power and the destructive intentions of the twisted Aspect of Death, they join him in his quest to unmake the world of Azeroth. They claimed the ancient dwarven fortress of Grim Batol and the surrounding Twilight Highlands, turning it into their main base of operations under leadership of their chieftain, the ogre mage Cho'gall, wreaking havoc wherever they can. They also have enlisted the help of the dangerous twilight dragonflight to bolster their ranks. They lead various campaigns against the world such as the assault on Mount Hyjal, assisting the naga in their war against Neptulon or undermining the efforts of rebuilding the World Pillar in Deepholm. They also maintain a strong presence within Blackrock Caverns, where they ascend to transform into drakonids and are sending supplies back and forth to Twilight Highlands. They work with the Tol'vir to reconfigured the pyramid inside the Maker's Terrace at Uldum to become a superweapon capable of destroying all life on Azeroth. Notably, their role in the game is very similar to that of the Cult of the Damned in Wrath of the Lich King, and may be considered a Cataclysm-version of it.
Thrall: Twilight of the AspectsThis section concerns content exclusive to the Warcraft novels or short stories.
FirelandsThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
Hour of TwilightThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
With the Twilight Cult in disarray following the demise of its leader, Cho'gall, an enigmatic figure known as the "Twilight Father" has taken on a more active role in the cult's affairs. Thrall, with the aid of adventurers, faced off with the Twilight Father during the Hour of Twilight once and for all. The Twilight Father is defeated, however the Twilight's Hammer continued to lay siege to Wyrmrest. The cultists fled once Morchok was defeated. Some members lead by Hagara the Stormbinder guarded the Focusing Iris within the Eye of Eternity, but Hagara and her group were also slain by heroes. The Twilight's Hammer then makes one final attempt to stop the Dragon Aspects, and a war party of Twilight Dragons accompanied by their Vrykul riders damaged the engines of The Skyfire in an attempt to stop them from catching up to Deathwing as he fled back to Deepholm. Once the Dragons and the Vrykul were slain, however, Warmaster Blackhorn accompanied by Goriona boarded the ship and attempted to dispose of the heroes, but were ultimately slain, allowing the Skyfire to catch up to Deathwing and finally destroy him with the power of the Dragon Soul.
With the death of Deathwing and leadership of the cult the status of the cult is unknown but it can be presumed that the cultist who survived still worship the Old Gods and will remain a threat, however diminished they may be.
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While the cult has fallen, some remaining members infiltrated the Ragefire Chasm and founded the Dark Shaman. The legacy of the Hammer is still pursued by several groups such as Council of the Black Harvest, bent on unlocking the mysteries of the cult's dark arts.
Notable commanders and allies
Druids of the Flame
During the assault on the Firelands, a new ally of the Twilight's Hammer has emerged — the Druids of the Flame, a treasonous sect of night elves led by Fandral Staghelm who have pledged their allegiance to Ragnaros.
Military forcesThis section concerns content exclusive to the Warcraft RPG and is considered non-canon.
What the Twilight's Hammer lacks in military training, it more than makes up for in fervor. Every member would willingly die for the cult, fully believing the Old Gods would reward them for their sacrifice.
Members of lower echelons of the Twilight Hammer (which is most of them) are predominately of the non-magical classes, mostly barbarians, rogues, and warriors. Other non-magical classes are known, but less common. As one ascends through the ranks of the organization, spellcasters become more common. The twilight overlords are almost exclusively spellcasters. Most of the spellcasters are arcanists, specifically elementalists.
This hierarchical pyramid is also indicative of how the Twilight's Hammer cult approaches defense. The first cultists the heroes encounter are likely to be low-level initiates. Only if that fails to deter them do the heroes face higher-ranking members, increasing in rank and power as they plunge into the depths of the temple. To catch sight of the inner circle, the heroes must breach the inner sanctum. The twilight lord deigns to fight only if the sect as a whole is threatened (in other words, to preserve his own life or goals). By that point, of course, the heroes are depleted from fighting the cultists, in theory making them easy prey for the twilight lord (which makes him look even more impressive to his followers).
Should a Twilight's Hammer sect be incited to attack another group, their offensive tactics differ little from their defense. Low-level members act as scouts, while the main force attacks in waves of incrementally increasing power, until they subdue their foe, and the twilight lord — or one of his representatives — can swoop in and claim victory. The Twilight's Hammer rarely uses such overt measures, however, preferring instead to scare off those who stand in its way. Accompanying each act of sabotage, kidnapping, or assassination is always an unambiguous — and gruesome — sign that the Twilight's Hammer is responsible.
The True Believer
Hermit Ortell, an NPC who lives in a cave in the southeast of Silithus, is an ex-Twilight's Hammer member. He will take 10 Encrypted Twilight Texts (which can drop from any Twilight's Hammer member and drop in large stacks from the roaming Twilight Prophet) through the repeatable quest . The quest gives no faction, but several hours after the turn-in, he will mail you a container. In the container can be translations of a Twilight's Hammer newsletter that contains lore information, as well as Shadow Resist tradeskill recipes for cloth and plate (Runed Stygian and Darkrune, respectively), as well as scrolls to create an Object of Beckoning.
Known members in World of Warcraft
Cataclysm MembersThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
Here is a list of all known members of the Twilight's Hammer that appear (or re-appear) in the third expansion: Cataclysm.
Leaving the Twilight's Hammer is not easy and deserters will be hunted.
Since the eary stages of Cataclysm's development, the Twilight's Hammer Cult was intented to be a face of the Cataclysm, with entire dungeons and zones devoted to them. What was once Cho'Gall and his clan became an enormous, world-hating cult that involved all races of Azeroth. The developers felt that they could use existing art of all races and add it to the pre-existing art of the Cult. However, the only art direction the developers came up with was the banner found in the Cult's camps, so they didn't have much to give the Cult their own unique look. One angle that was explored was the Old God connection: statues of Faceless Ones and lamps with the same motif worked into them were designed. The final art direction for the Cult's environment were dragon's heads, scales, and horns, purple flames, and Elementium blades. Elementium was chosen to be the Cult's "key-mineral," like Saronite was the Scourge's in Wrath of the Lich King. Since the Twilight's Hammer was summoning Elementium up from the ground, the developers decided to give unforged Elementium the organic, spiny look found within the Bastion of Twilight and the Twilight Highlands.