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Doomhammer.jpg

Orgrim Doomhammer is a principle character in the Warcraft universe. Also known as "the Backstabber" by the loyalists of Gul'dan and Blackhand, Doomhammer was the Warchief of the Orcish Horde during the end of the First War and the entirety of the Second War. The orcish capital of Orgrimmar, the Horde-controlled town of Hammerfall in the Arathi Highlands, and the flying battleship Orgrim's Hammer patrolling the skies of Icecrown, are named in his honor. He served as a mentor to Thrall, the former (and most well-known) Warchief of the current incarnation of the Horde.

Biography

Orgrim of the Blackrocks and Durotan of the Frostwolves originally met whilst secreting away as children from the sleeping tent during the Kosh'harg festival in Nagrand. The two troublesome youths escaped past their sleep time to spy on the clans' councils, only to be severely disappointed. Deciding instead to spend the rest of the night challenging each other, they soon formed a bond that, while technically not forbidden, was considered against tradition by the Blackrock and Frostwolf clans they belonged to. Orgrim and Durotan never stopped being friends.

During a race through Terokkar Forest, they accidentally stumbled upon a raging ogre, and in a last burst of speed, ran for their lives. Seemingly out of nowhere, a brigade of draenei appeared and rescued the lads, who spent the rest of the day with Restalaan, and conferencing with Velen.

Orgrim started his rise to power through the Thunderlord Clan, being a member of that clan too. Blackrock Clan had strong connections to the Thunderlord Clan, though, and for this reason Orgrim was able to rise to power in both. Upon the death of his father, Orgrim became wielder of the Doomhammer and second-in-command to Blackhand.

Though Orgrim was internally opposed to the war against the draenei, he followed Blackhand's orders, and even gave in to the blood lust Gul'dan had cultivated. But, like Durotan, he began to wonder if the orcs had been deceived. He was one of the few orcs that didn't drink the blood of Mannoroth, claiming to be unworthy to drink from the same vessel as the Warchief and chieftains. Though Blackhand was gullible enough to believe this excuse, Gul'dan was not, and would remain wary of Orgrim from that point on.

The First and Second Wars

Doomhammer was one of Blackhand's most trusted lieutenants, commanding a number of battles against the forces of the Kingdom of Azeroth. But Orgrim was less and less convinced about the decisions Blackhand made, and was growing more suspicious about Gul'dan's motives. When Gul'dan fell into a coma, trying to pry the secrets from the head of the dying Medivh, Orgrim took this chance to seize power by killing the Warchief, and becoming the leader of the Horde.

Around this time, Durotan arrived to see Orgrim. Some sources claim it was before Orgrim became Warchief, while others state it was after Orgrim had defeated Blackhand. The Frostwolf clan had been exiled for Durotan's refusal to follow Gul'dan's schemes. Durotan had known about Gul'dan's treachery and his pact with Kil'jaeden, but had been silent about it. He eventually decided to tell Orgrim about Gul'dan and the Shadow Council, and Orgrim decided it was time to stop the evil warlock. On his way back home, Durotan was ambushed by Gul'dan spies, and he and his wife were killed. Their unnamed baby was thought dead, but was instead found by Aedelas Blackmoore, who named him Thrall and raised him as a slave.

Unlike Blackhand, Doomhammer decided he would not be a puppet to Gul'dan and his Shadow Council. Doomhammer captured Garona and tortured her into revealing the location of the Council, seeking to destroy it because he believed it to be a corrupting influence over the Horde. Orgrim then killed as many warlocks and members of the Shadow Council as he could manage, effectively crushing their power.

When Gul'dan awoke, he found that the new Warchief had destroyed the Shadow Council - branding the warlock caste as traitors and executing many of them - and intended to slay him as well. Begging at Doomhammer's feet, Gul'dan reminded him that with the Shadow Council gone he was the last true sorcerer within the Horde, and that they would need him against the human wizards. The warlock promised that he would create an army of all-powerful necromancers, loyal to the Warchief: the Death Knights. Doomhammer readily agreed, despite (correctly) suspecting Gul'dan of treachery.

A bitter enemy of the Alliance, Doomhammer was in the front ranks as he led the Horde into Khaz Modan and the Second War. Although he commanded the Horde with an iron fist, Doomhammer also demonstrated his prowess as a diplomat as he made new allies for the Horde among the goblins and trolls of Azeroth. Doomhammer claimed the Blackrock Spire as the Horde's base of operations, and allowed Zuluhed of the Dragonmaw clan to pursue his research into the Demon Soul. This led to the enslavement of the dragonqueen Alexstrasza, and the breeding of dragons to help the Horde in the war.

Under his command, the Horde was able to wreak havoc on the northlands, conquering most of Khaz Modan and gravely damaging Lordaeron and Quel'Thalas. Orgrim also made a pact with Lord Perenolde, the ruler of Alterac. The treacherous human allowed Orgrim and the Horde to pass unimpeded through the mountain passes towards Lordaeron's Capital City, in exchange for the assurance that his nation would not be attacked by the Horde. Orgrim, though suspicious of the human's motives, agreed.

However, Doomhammer was correct in his previous assessment of the perfidious Gul'dan. When the Horde was launching the final and massive attack on Lordaeron's Capital City, Gul'dan's Stormreaver Clan, along with Cho'gall's Twilight's Hammer, and all others loyal to the warlock, abandoned the Horde and set sail to the south. Chasing him to the Tomb of Sargeras, Orgrim sent part of the Blackrock Clan and the Black Tooth Grin clan to engage both the Stormreaver and Twilight's Hammer forces. Gul'dan and his warlocks entered the Tomb of Sargeras but were slain by the demons within. The rest of the clan members were anihilated by Orgrim's forces.

Weakened by losses caused by Gul'dan's treachery, Doomhammer was forced to fall back from the human capital of Lordaeron to his fortress at Blackrock Spire. There he fought the final battle of the Second War against the Alliance of Lordaeron, leading a charge from Blackrock Spire to clash with Anduin Lothar and his paladin guard. Human and orc battled one another in a titanic conflict that left both warriors drained, but the Warchief was able to vanquish the Regent of Azeroth. Some believe that Doomhammer did not win fairly and that Lothar was killed after being ambushed by Horde warriors. Nevertheless, Lothar's death did not have the effect that Doomhammer intended. Rather than being demoralized, the Alliance - led by Lothar's lieutenant, Turalyon - rallied, whipped into a frenzy that shocked even the Warchief himself and all but destroyed Doomhammer's forces, chasing them back to the Dark Portal. Orgrim himself was defeated and captured by Turalyon, soon after Lothar's death.

Meeting with Thrall

After the defeat at Blackrock Spire, Doomhammer was captured and held as an oddity (his own words) in the palace of King Terenas of Lordaeron. However, Doomhammer was able to escape easily from Lordaeron City and made his way to an internment camp, where he saw what had become of his people. Rather than the bloodthirsty warriors he had led in battle, Doomhammer found only lethargic, wasted souls. Despairing, Doomhammer very nearly fell victim to the lethargy himself, but managed to retain enough of himself to escape from the internment camp. He lived as a hermit in the less-traveled areas of Lordaeron, until one day, he was contacted by Drek'Thar of the Frostwolf Clan.

The elder shaman informed Doomhammer that there was a young orc staying with the Frostwolves high in the mountains of Alterac. This orc, discovered to be the long-lost son of Durotan, had escaped after being raised a slave by humans and had begun searching for his people. Durotan's son, Thrall, was determined to find a way to free the captive orcs and restore them to their former glory. Orgrim had heard of this Thrall before from Grom Hellscream, whom Thrall had met before he began searching for his clan. Hellscream had nothing but good things to say about the youth.

Intrigued, Doomhammer paid a visit to the Frostwolves to see Thrall for himself, but made it clear beforehand that he didn't want Thrall to know who he was. When Doomhammer arrived nobody referred to him by name or told Thrall about him. When Thrall met Doomhammer that night, he did not realize he was dealing with the former leader of the Horde of whom he had heard so many great things; he only saw a strange orc warming himself by the fire. As the night wore on, Thrall became increasingly annoyed by the secretive demeanor of the stranger, and by his talk of how there was no point in trying to fight the humans. When Thrall insisted that the freedom of the orcs was worth fighting for, the stranger asked him what he was doing hiding in the mountains with the other Frostwolves if he really believed that. Becoming more angry, Thrall argued that he would travel south in the spring to join Grom Hellscream and the Warsong Clan, that together they would storm the camps and liberate all of the orc prisoners. The stranger scoffed at the notion and contemptuously dismissed Hellscream as a "demon-ridden dreamer." Thrall had heard enough and challenged this stranger, who had repaid the hospitality of the Frostwolves with insults, to single battle. This was precisely what Doomhammer had hoped would happen. He had implied the Frostwolves were cowards and that the orcs as a race could not defeat the humans in order to see whether Thrall would stand up for his clan and people, and Thrall had not disappointed him. Now Doomhammer would see whether Thrall's fighting skill was equally impressive.

Liberation of the orcs

Losing to the young shaman, and being shown mercy, he revealed himself as the Warchief of the Horde. At first Thrall was aghast at how he had treated such an important person as Orgrim Doomhammer, and began to apologize profusely. Orgrim stopped him and told him it was not necessary, explaining his reasons for staying anonymous. He went on to explain that he had a plan to break free the imprisoned orcs, and Thrall and Drek'thar agreed to help.

Along with Hellscream and the Warsong Clan, they were able to easily storm four internment camps freeing the orcs held inside. At the fifth, however, the Alliance was prepared and held a force of mounted knights. They ambushed the orcs and in the mist of their bloodlust the orcs fell victim to the knights' charge. In the midst of the chaos created by Thrall to cover their retreat, Orgrim was mortally wounded by a strike to the back — impaled by a charging knight's lance with enough force to pierce the back plate of his armor and his body, denting the breastplate from the inside. (This is a rather ironic death for him, since he had been called the backstabber and died being literally backstabbed). With his last breath, Orgrim gave the title of Warchief, along with his great warhammer and black armor, to Thrall. The former internment camp where he fell is now the Horde base of Hammerfall, located in the Arathi Highlands.

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