Will Saurfang Return?




He’s arguably the most badass orc of them all.  Sure, Thrall can lay down some hurt, but when it comes to just busting heads with an axe (the way an orc should), it’s hard to beat Varok Saurfang.

So when Cataclysm came out, what did Blizzard do?  They decided to stuff Saurfang away for safe keeping.  My guess is he just stole too much thunder from Garrosh.  As it stands right now in current lore, Saurfang is in charge of the Horde’s forces that remain in Northrend, which is what an orc like Saurfang considers “semi-retirement”.

So is that it?  Are we done with the great and powerful Saurfang?  Hardly.  I’m pretty sure I know when he’ll show back up, and I’m pretty sure how he’ll die.  The answer?  It all boils down to one word…


Sargeras.  He’s the biggest, baddest bad-guy of them all throughout WoW’s entire pantheon of villains.  However, for as bad as he is– for as much sheer evil he has wrought upon the universe, there is only one hero from Azeroth or Draenor who Sargeras has personally and directly killed: Broxigar.


There is no other character in WoW who has as direct a path of vengeance to Sargeras as Saurfang. Every single other hero in Azeroth has some degree of separation or a more round-about case.  Saurfang is the only guy who could show up at the final battle and say, “Hello, my name is Varok Saurfang.  You killed my brother.  Prepare to die.”

And that’s why I firmly believe we haven’t seen the last of Saurfang.  He will be there at the last battle with Sargeras.  Sure, there will likely be a complete smorgasbord of NPC heroes at that battle, but Saurfang will all but surely be among them.  And further– I think that’s where Saurfang will finally be killed.

And I don’t mean in some sissy way.  He’ll probably sacrifice himself at some point in the battle to ensure victory.  Why am I so sure?  Beowulf.  When it comes to hero types, Saurfang has been migrating into that role.  (Happy fun fact: Frank Miller made Bruce Wayne into a Beowulf hero-type in “The Dark Knight Returns”.)  For Saurfang to completely fulfill his hero-type, he needs to die in a glorious way.  I can not think of a death more glorious, or personal for Saurfang than dieing to ensure the destruction of Sargeras.  Fifth expansion, we’ll see him at the end.  Count on it.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ruscour September - 2011 at 2:59 am

Too old to lead the Horde? Old enough to save the world.

Blizzard better not forget about him, if he’s not in there in the final boss fight of the level 100 expansion imma be m ad.

2 Gigi September - 2011 at 1:47 pm

First off I looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooove your site, none of my friends that play are into the lore like I am.

I actually am dearly hoping that if Thrall/Go’el doesn’t come back to lead the Horde then Saurfang will see what is going on with Garrosh and will wrest away control from him either at the end of this expansion or at the beginning of the next one. The sooner the better of course for me.

3 Cocles September - 2011 at 2:03 pm

There’s also a dark horse within this whole Garrosh controversy. What if I were to tell you there is an orc military commander who is descended from a famous orc war hero. He is revered among his people, a close advisor to Thrall, and there is even a named axe that has been passed down through his line. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Except it isn’t Garrosh– it’s Nazgrel, and the axe is Serathil. Traditionally, he hates the humans as much as Garrosh does, but unlike Garrosh, he is ferociously loyal to Thrall. Blizzard seems to have completely forgotten about him, though, since his name wasn’t even brought up in the Shattering when they were ticking through the list of people who could take over for Thrall. That said, maybe he’s the ace up their sleeve.

4 Gigi September - 2011 at 2:30 pm

OMG… I have never really looked into the guys in Outland (started playing at the end of Wrath like two months before Cata came out and have been doing lots of research in order to understand all this lorewise).

I just read up on him and I have to wonder if he has the appropriate temperament to really lead the Horde. While he is fiercely loyal, if Thrall isn’t working only for the Horde now and is instead working for the world then would he really not act on his hatred of humans? Wouldn’t it be the same type of leader just a different name?

5 Cocles September - 2011 at 2:49 pm

Thrall likely saved Nazgrel from an internment camp, and unlike Garrosh, Nazgrel witnessed Thrall’s reformation of the Horde. With that in mind, I really don’t see Nazgrel ever turning on Thrall. His respect for Thrall is such that even if he were to disagree with Thrall, he’s the type to mention something, then shut up and follow orders. While Nazgrel may hate humans as much as anyone, Nazgrel has *much* more respect for Thrall’s vision. So if Nazgrel were Warchief, he’d likely put in a lot more effort than Garrosh to follow that vision.

That said, there’s another angle. If Saurfang were to come down from Northrend to “take back the Horde”, Nazgrel could be an immensely powerful ally. It doesn’t have to be Nazgrel who becomes Warchief for Nazgrel to come into play.

–God I wish they’d do something with Nazgrel.

6 King Craze March - 2012 at 10:13 am

Agreed his like a more kick ass version of Garrosh which is a Thrall loyalist

7 Ironsolute October - 2012 at 8:38 am

They have forgot varok not naz. Nazgrel is in big role of mop he is commander of hordes in pandaria contident i hope to see varok do somethink he havent do anything in last 3 expansions

8 Cocles October - 2012 at 12:20 pm

Is Naz back? I haven’t been on the test server yet. If so, that’s awesome!

As for Varok, I don’t believe they’ve forgotten him. With Varok, they tied up his story and outright said he was retiring (albeit a relative term for Varok) to lead the Horde forces in Northrend. With Nazgrel, they just left him standing in there in Thrallmar. We haven’t heard a word about him since.

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