Know Your Lore: Lantresor of the Burning Blade

Matthew Rossi
M. Rossi|09.10.14

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Know Your Lore: Lantresor of the Burning Blade
The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

He is not the result of Gul'dan's breeding experiments.

He is not orc, nor is he draenei. No, he is Lantresor, and he is a half-orc blademaster of draenei descent. Formerly one of the Burning Blade, his story straddles two worlds, and in its wake embodies both the glories and the foibles of the world of his birth. Not welcome among either of his peoples, he sought his own path, his own destiny. And we have seen it unfold in different ways, at different times.

Lantresor of the Blade is a blademaster. This is his story.

Lantresor on Outland

When we meet Lantresor. he is an aged half-draenei. There is much we never learn about Lantresor - we don't learn how he came to be, for example. Who were his parents? How was he conceived? Was he raised by orcs or draenei? The Burning Blade at one point in the history of the First and Second War became host to many orc blademasters who were corrupted by demon blood, going so far as to speak eredun (demonic) to one another - Galtak Ered'nash or All hail the Burning Blade. It seems likely that the Lantresor we meet in Nagrand was a member during this period, because he says he served under two warchiefs. The mostly likely candidates would be Blackhand the Destroyer, first warchief of the Horde, and Orgrim Doomhammer, his betrayer, assassin and successor.

When we meet Lantresor he's an aged blademaster who has siezed control of an ogre clan, the Boulderfist, and he's quite up front about his past, although he doesn't say much - we learn that he was once of the Burning Blade, that he is a half-breed, and that he fought in the First and Second Wars before somehow returning to Draenor before Ner'zhul tore the world apart. He stands as ruler of the Bladefist ogres by right of martial superiority - none of them can stand against him, and so he rules. It's a very ogrish way to select a leader.

The player is of course sent to quell the attacks of the Boulderfist ogres against their respective towns in Nagrand (either Telaar or Garadar, depending on faction) and after fighting their way to Lantresor the blademaster makes it clear that he's not impressed. Even if they manage to defeat the Boulderfist, they are standing on ogre land, and the Warmaul will still come for them. Soon, however, the half-orc makes it clear that there is a way both he and his people and the player can get what they want by joining forces and working together. Lantresor is tired of both the Warmaul, and the demon worshippers of the nearby Kil'sorrow Fortress, and with the player's help, he concocts a way to distract both the Warmaul ogres and the fiend friends of the Kil'sorrow by having the player murder Kil'sorrow and planting Warmaul banners, and then stealing Kil'sorrow armaments and planting them on the slain bodies of Warmaul ogres. After this 'exchange' is made, Lantresor is pleased enough with the player to agree to a cessation of hostilities with whichever town they represent, and goes so far as to exchange a peace offering with them.

This ends Lantresor's story in Outland - he retains control of the Boulderfist and now his two greatest enemies, the Kil'sorrow and Warmaul, are at war without him having to lift a finger to make it happen. And all it costs him is pulling his people back from territory he no longer needs to encroach upon because he'll soon be able to move on either the Warmaul or the Kil'sorrow at his leisure. The next time we encounter Lantresor, he would be much younger.
We meet again for the first time, Lantresor

Upon our excursion to the alternate Draenor, we encounter a world much younger than the one we experienced when we went to Outland. This Draenor has not yet known the genocide of the Horde against the Draenei - on this world, Gul'dan failed to convince the orcs to drink the Blood of Mannoroth due to the interference of a stranger. As a result, the Burning Blade that we meet on Draenor is not that cabal of bloodthirsty demon worshippers from the First and Second War - instead, they seem to be oriented around some form of elementalism, going so far as to summon a gigantic magma elemental. In this case, when we meet Lantresor, he is still a half breed orc/draenei, and he is in chains, put there by a clan that is now far more aggressive about racial purity and unwilling to accept a half breed among their ranks.

If one finds it ironic that a cabal of demon worshippers should be more egalitarian than the Iron Horde, well, no one said hatred had to make sense.

In their hasty choice to imprison Lantresor, the Burning Blade of this Draenor dooms their leadership to death. One you make contact with Lantresor, help retrieve his banner and blade, and meet him within the depths of the Burning Blade clan's cavern stronghold, you quickly find out how to bring down Warlord Dharl of the Thrice Bloodied Blade, leaving Azuka Bladefury in sole command of the Burning Blade. She exiles Lantresor for his heritage, costing her clan a powerful blademaster and once again showing the folly of Iron Horde racism.

Still, the Burning Blade's loss is the gain of a sensible leader, for Lantresor joins forces with his liberator and serves with distinction at her or his garrison.
We still don't know Lantresor's origins. Moreover we've learned that there was a Burning Blade clan before the drinking of the demon blood, that they had a more elemental focus, and that they were at one point willing to train a half-draenei son of the clan in the arts of the blademaster before the birth of the Iron Horde injected Garrosh Hellscream's racism into their organization. Azuka Bladefury's dismissal of Lantresor's origin shows that the Burning Blade we encounter on Draenor is no longer the same clan that taught Lantresor his skills, but neither is it the organization that another Lantresor fought with under two warchiefs. In this way, Lantresor is a symbol of the strange new Draenor we find ourselves in, where things are familiar, but not the same.

While you don't need to have played the previous Warcraft games to enjoy World of Warcraft, a little history goes a long way toward making the game a lot more fun. Dig into even more of the lore and history behind the World of Warcraft in WoW Insider's Guide to Warcraft Lore.
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