Lady Sylvanas Windrunner
From her tragic backstory to her current behavior, the Banshee Queen garnered 2.5 times as many votes as the next runner up. As WordGardener expressed on Deletrix's World of Warcraft Blog.
Her story has such deep tragedy, and yet she can't even die and finally rest. Instead, she's chasing down Arthas through Icecrown. Better yet, remember that epic battle in her Undercity itself, with Thrall, where we got to run around fighting with her and SHE WAS SHOOTING A BOW THAT FIRED WITCHES INSTEAD OF ARROWS?! Ahem. Yeah, she's my girl!
In the comments, etherraichu says,
Kyrt would like to see some growth in the Dark Lady's character.
Also, she's the only faction leader who lost absolutely every reason for their existence and yet continued on eventually.
Her strength is she is evil; her weakenss is that she has become too evil, too stereotyped. Blizzard need to shake her up somehow, to reinvigorate her story. Redemption is out; its too late for moderation so the obvious route is external. A Forsaken rebellion? Could be done but the story has now been done twice, once in game.
Patch 5.2 reminded us that the blood elves have a leader, bringing him from obscurity to the second most favorite faction leader. As DamianPseudonym says,
And seksivites enthuses,
... he's (so far) the only faction leader who hasn't behaved like either a willfully clueless nitwit, or, a raving maniac. The fact that's he's trying to walk the tightrope of relations between horde and alliance, stay loyal to the horde, AND is willing to listen and learn when he needs to, is pretty awesome. And he actually got some character this expansion, which is cool.
he brought his people back from the brink because of their arrogance and just did what needed to be done. He did this all the while looking a whole lot sexier than all those other Faction leaders.
Vol'jin was voted right behind Lor'themar and the second choice for many whose first choice was someone else. JixxyJexxy had this to say,
Further like all races of the Horde, Vol'jin is a leader that has over come pretty staunch adversity for his people. The darkspear were and arguably still are a people on the verge of extinction. Vol'jin took the reigns of his people while still grieving the death of his father, fresh out of his passing into a shadow hunter and lead them to a new land with Thrall and the Orcs. That's pretty impressive IMO.
Willing to take action when necessary but always has some sort of plan. Even while bleeding out in Dagger in the Dark he is calm enough to devise a way to go off the radar and plan his next move. He's not apposed to asking for help from both Horde and Alliance but he isn't the ideal peacekeeper either. He knows the value of brotherhood and honor but is never afraid to get his hands dirty.
Cairne isn't even alive anymore, but still collected more votes than those leaders with still beating hearts. As PyrePhoenix at Corhi, Casually says,
Always thought he was a pretty chill dude, I bet he'd have been fun to visit a sports bar with. Guy gets a lot of respect for managing to keep the Tauren going in the face of them bloodthirsty centaur tribes. And then Megatha tricked Garrosh and it was all Lion King over again. Sort of.
Tied with Cairne is another former faction leader: Magni Bronzebeard. JeffLaBowski at Sportsbard had this to say about him:
It stings a little to read about him now. To hear how he loved his brothers, forged the Ashbringer, changed his stance on female dwarves, and forged a mace for prince Anduin. Just a few of the historic things he has done. Most of which, I think would make excellent quests. So there it is. My vote is cast. King Magni Bronzebeard, I choose you.
I find it interesting that Varian tied with Garrosh for votes. PyrePhoenix talks about Varian, too.
I'm impressed with the way he greeted my death knight and panda monk to the Alliance. He handled the encounter on the ICC ramparts with Saurfang pretty well, I thought, even if Jaina did ruin the moment. And then I remember the fifteen-foot-tall statue he had built of himself. (And the way Blizzard rewrote history so that he got credit for my kill of Onyxia. Grr.)
The way Garrosh treated my pandaren made me immediately wish I had chosen Alliance instead, but there were a few people defending the current warchief. In the comments, gonzobreakfast1 says,
Garrosh, not because I like him, but because he's active and interesting.
His whole reign has basically been a "what if" scenario. What if we took an orc of old and made him Warchief? Pretty much everything he's done is what I'd expect of his father had he survived the battle with Mannoroth and Thrall died.
The Draenei leader tied with the gnome and worgen leaders. HerrKlokbok at The Exodar Sisters has this to say about Velen:
Velen is the anchor in a universe that's really lost its marbles. Old gods everywhere, demons all around, elemental planes in a total flux ... it's hard to be on top of it. Unless you're Velen. While everyone else scamper about like ants his eyes are fixed on the bigger picture. There's a dire need for people like that in Azeroth.
In the comments, suntiger746 had a lot to say about most of the leaders, including Mekkatorque.
As for Mekkatorque, I loved his leader story. It showed both how hard the gnome's situation had been for him and at the same time how resilient gnomes are inface of adversity.
Though he tied with Mekkatorque and Velen, Genn's voters were not verbose.
Most of the remaining leaders and a few others garnered one or two votes. This includes Tyrande Whisperwind, Thrall, Anduin Wrynn, Jaina Proudmoore, Moira Bronzebeard, Baine Bloodhoof, and Aysa Cloudsinger. Gallywix got a humorous shout-out, but that's about it.
Look for the next Community Blog Topic coming soon. If you have any suggestions for what you would like to see blogged about, please leave your ideas in the comments.