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WarcraftLoreWorld of WarcraftGnollAllianceHoggerAlteracRedridgeMountainsBrann BronzebeardStormwindAzerothAncientHyenaDalaranShamanMageGoblinPirateKalimdorPandariaZandalariFirst WarPacklordGarfangKingdomKing BarathenKing AdamantKing LlaneWrynnSylvanas WindrunnerSnarlmaneRot HideFenris KeepLoch ModanKoboldTroggDwarfMosshideSagepawMurlocWetlandsAxis of AwfulDreadlordVarimathrasDetherocBalnazzarScourgeVarian
The greatest threat Stormwind has ever faced.
The gnolls are one of the younger races of the world, and are native to the Alterac and Redridge Mountains in the Eastern Kingdoms. While their exact origin is unknown, Brann Bronzebeard speculates that they may be descendants of, of course, a hyena Ancient.
Gnolls are especially prone to infighting and often tend to quickly forget things or not pay attention for long. A wizard of Dalaran once gained the favor of a Redridge clan leader by performing a small magic trick for a day, while on the following day, the chieftain quickly sicced his hunters on the sorcerer. From a magical point of view, when the gnolls can be bothered to pay attention for long enough, they tend to focus on elemental shamanism.
Gnolls have often been employed as mercenaries, although not as very smart ones. They are often employed the goblin cartels or by pirate groups, and it can be assumed that this is how some gnoll tribes have made their home in Kalimdor. One group, the Blackmane Mercenaries, were hired by the Zandalari to gather supplies for their invasion of Pandaria.
75 years before the First War, the Kingdom of Stormwind was attacked by a massive coordinated gnoll army led by Packlord Garfang. Using distraction tactics, the Packlord succeeded in raiding almost a third of all human settlements outside of Stormwind City before sending his forces to attack the capital itself. King Barathen of Stormwind then took a small elite party of knights to the Redridge Mountains and defeated Garfang personally in a battle that took a full day and night. The gnolls quickly fell to infighting following the Packlord's death, allowing the king to rally his soldiers and decimate the invaders. Since then, King Barathen became known as "the Adamant", becoming better known as Adamant Wrynn, the father of King Llane and the grandfather of Varian Wrynn.
Shortly after the Third War, Sylvannas Windrunner fought a short war against the forces of the dreadlords Varimathras, Detheroc and Balnazzar. To this end, she used her banshees to enslave, among others, a local gnoll clan, by having them possess the gnoll leader Snarlmane. At some point Snarlmane died and was ressurected by, presumably, the Scourge. He then joined the Rot Hide gnolls of Fenris Keep and was presumably killed by adventurers.
Following the Cataclysm, in Loch Modan, the local gnolls, kobolds and troggs formed a humorous alliance against the dwarves, founded and led by the Mosshide gnolls' chieftain, Sagepaw. They planned to add the local murlocs to their ranks, who would then be armed with "gnoll-forged weapons of indestructible copper", however, the plan was foiled by Alliance adventurers. This "Axis of Awful" functioned as follows: the Troggs mined copper for the Kobolds, who worked for the Gnolls, who brought the murlocs with them from the nearby Wetlands.
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