Blizzard have compiled a summary of all the relevant history of the dragon Aspects just in time for the Dragonflight launch next week, so if you aren’t familiar with everything draconic going on or just need a refresher, dive in below!
Soar through the history of the dragon Aspects to a time before the Dragon Isles awaken.
Imbued with titan-bestowed powers and charged with protecting Azeroth, the dragon Aspects have worked tirelessly to fulfill their ancient destiny. Theirs is a history of betrayal, corruption, and a fight for the very survival of their legacy.
The Rise of the Aspects
When the titans were ordering Azeroth, they needed a more delicate hand to combat the agents of the Old Gods. Due to their colossal forms, Aggramar feared the Pantheon would irreparably damage or even kill the world-soul. He proposed creating powerful constructs to act as the Pantheon’s hands and prosecute their will against the Black Empire.
Old Gods: Physical manifestations of the Void, these parasitic horrors grow like cancers and are administrators of corruption. Notable Old Gods are C’Thun and Yogg-Saron.
The Pantheon members imbued their servants with their specific likenesses and powers to lead the rest of the titan-forged. They called these empowered beings “keepers.” One titan, Aggramar, imparted his strength and courage to Keeper Tyr, who would become the greatest warrior of the titan-forged. In time, the keepers led the titan-forged against the armies of the Black Empire.
Titans: The titans are a race of majestic planet-sized cosmic beings made up of Order magic and the primordial matter from which the universe was born. Notable titans are Aman’Thul and Sargeras.
In the far north of ancient Kalimdor, the proto-dragon Galakrond had been the largest and most effective predator. Eventually, he would succumb to corruption and began to devour his own kind.
Tyr knew that if Galakrond remained unchecked, he would devour all nature, spreading his affliction to the far corners of Azeroth. He warned his fellow keepers of what he had seen, but they wouldn’t act. So he searched for a means to destroy the giant proto-dragon and his fetid minions.
Dragon Aspect Leaders
The answer lay with five of the greatest and most intelligent proto-dragons: Alexstrasza, Malygos, Neltharion, Nozdormu, and Ysera. Impressed with how they worked together to survive Galakrond’s attacks, Tyr reached out to Malygos. Under Tyr’s guidance, the proto-dragons warred with Galakrond.
“I have watched you. I have watched the others. I see much potential in you, in these friends of yours…and I say that as someone who has watched many of your kind since the first of you began to stir toward self-consciousness.” – Tyr
Primal Dragons: Also known as proto-drakes or proto-dragons, these creatures were the ancestors of dragonkind. After the dragon Aspects were elevated by the titans, some primal dragons also embraced the gifts of the titans to form the five dragonflights. Others shunned this ordering and roamed the wilds of Northrend and the Dragon Isles.
Tyr requested that these five proto-dragons be imbued with powers to guard Azeroth’s lands. Keeper Odyn challenged the idea. Despite their heroism, Odyn only saw the dragons as primitive life forms. He felt that only the mighty titan-forged could be trusted to protect the world. The other keepers were not easily swayed by Odyn, and the proto-dragons were transformed into the Aspects—leaders of the dragonflights and guardians of Azeroth. Odyn, believing the dragons would fail, left to build his own group of warriors, the Valarjar.
Alexstrasza, The Life-Binder
Also known as the Dragon Queen and Aspect of the red dragonflight. Alexstrasza was empowered by Eonar to act as guardian of all life. As Dragon Queen, Alexstrasza served as the leader of the Aspects, bringing them together in times of great need. In order to defeat Deathwing, Alexstrasza and the rest of the Aspects sacrificed much of their power.
Also known as the Timeless One, Guardian of Time, Murozond. Aspect of the bronze dragonflight, Nozdormu was empowered by Aman’Thul to safeguard time itself and police the ever-spinning pathways of fate and destiny. When Deathwing was defeated, Nozdormu lost much of his power along with the rest of the Aspects. Nozdormu foresaw his eventual fall to corruption, becoming the leader of the Infinite Dragonflight. As Murozond, this future self ultimately fell to adventurers in the End Time.
Neltharion, The Earth-Warder (former)
Aspect of the black dragonflight . After being driven mad by the Old Gods, he took the name Deathwing the Destroyer. Failing in his goal to enslave the other dragonflights, he aimed to bring about the Hour of Twilight, the unmaking of all creation. Though he possessed the power to shatter the world, in the end, he fought alone, facing his fellow Aspects and their allies. He fell from the skies into the Maelstrom, destroyed by the Dragon Soul and the champions of Azeroth.
Malygos, Aspect of Magic
Aspect of the blue dragonflight. He was empowered with the essence of Norgannon to serve as the guardian of magic and hidden arcanum. Malygos and his mate Sindragosa ruled the blue dragonflight until the War of the Ancients, when the crazed Deathwing used the Dragon Soul to wipe out most of the flight, leaving only Malygos and precious few eggs left. Malygos was killed after declaring war on all mortal spellcasters in the Nexus War, leaving Kalecgos to lead the blue dragonlfight in his wake.
Ysera, The Dreamer (former)
Also known as The Awakened and Aspect of the green dragonflight. Alexstrasza’s younger sister, Ysera, was chosen by Eonar to watch over the growing wilds of the world from the Emerald Dream. Ysera fell to the Nightmare in Legion and was put to rest by Tyrande Whisperwind. Her soul arrived in the afterlife called Ardenweald, where she was restored by the intervention of the Winter Queen. Ysera’s essence remains bound to the Shadowlands, leaving her daughter Merithra to guide the green dragonflight.
Loken, a keeper falling to an Old God’s influence, began working toward the downfall of the other keepers. Tyr suspected darkness was growing within the fallen keeper, so he and his companions stole the discs of Norgannon to preserve the vital knowledge they contained. When Loken discovered the discs were missing, he turned to the only creatures he knew were powerful enough to stop the mighty Tyr—ancient C’Thraxxi monstrosities. He ordered the colossal abominations to kill Tyr and all who followed him.
Far to the south, the C’Thraxxi overtook the fleeing keepers and their followers in a tranquil and temperate glade. Fearing for his allies’ lives, Tyr ordered Archaedas and Ironaya to lead the rest of the titan-forged farther south. Meanwhile, he would hold off the C’Thraxxi for as long as possible.
The violent struggle between the lone keeper and the C’Thraxxi raged for six days and nights. As fatigue set in, Tyr resolved to sacrifice himself to protect his friends. He unleashed his remaining power on the C’Thraxxi, expending his life force in a blinding explosion of arcane energy that shook the world to the core.
Archaedas and Ironaya watched as the eruption of magic flared across the horizon. After the volatile energies subsided, the two titan-forged returned to the site of the battle. Within a giant crater crackling with arcane magic, there lay Tyr’s lifeless body.
In honor of her fallen comrade, Ironaya named the glade surrounding the crater “Tyr’s Fall,” which in the vrykul tongue translated to “Tirisfal.” She and her followers buried Tyr where he lay and placed Tyr’s massive silver hand atop his final resting place to memorialize his valiant sacrifice.
The Sting of Betrayal
With the fall of Tyr, the Aspects were blinded to the darkness slowly growing within their midst. The tendrils of Old Gods corruption had tightened the hold on Neltharion the Earth-Warder.
With the guidance of the Old Gods, Neltharion would devise a way to enslave the other dragonflights to usher forth the Hour of Twilight and the unmaking of all creation. The moment when the Old Gods could finally be free from their imprisonment, but he needed help.
When the armies of the Burning Legion began an invasion of Azeroth, Neltharion suggested creating a magical artifact to aid in destroying the demons. He asked the other Aspects to help craft it; each Aspect would contribute a portion of their essence to the artifact.
Neltharion brought the Dragon Soul to bear against the Legion, devastating the demonic swarm. But in his corruption, Neltharion, once the Earth-Warder and protector of Azeroth, became Deathwing the Destroyer. He would shock his fellow Aspects as he turned the Dragon Soul against them. His betrayal cut deep as he turned on his own kind. The shocked dragons were helpless to resist the power of the deadly artifact, for it contained a fraction of each of their essences. All the dragonflights, save the black dragonflight, were paralyzed.
But Deathwing’s doom would eventually come.
Forged by Deathwing during the War of the Ancients, the Dragon Soul harnessed the combined power of the dragonflights until it was ultimately destroyed. Through the Caverns of Time, Thrall and the remaining dragonflights recovered the powerful artifact before its destruction. Now they have rallied at Wyrmrest Temple in a desperate attempt to use the might of the Dragon Soul against Deathwing himself.
Wyrmrest Temple was the final hope for the forces allied against Deathwing the Destroyer. Here, the remaining aspects— Alexstrasza, Ysera, Nozdormu, and Kalecgos, along with their ally Thrall, would gather to empower the Dragon Soul—Azeroth’s last chance to stop the great behemoth. But, as they began to charge the Dragon Soul with energy, Deathwing and his entire army assaulted Wyrmrest Temple.
Eventually, with the help of allies, the remaining Aspects would sunder Deathwing, and he would fall from the skies into the Maelstrom.
In the coming years, the pain of Neltharion’s betrayal would cut deeper than any could imagine. His betrayal was so destructive that the five dragonflights never truly recovered. The flights were left listless and could no longer protect Azeroth, and the blue dragonflight was all but destroyed. Their sacrifice was apparent as they were now made mortal.
The Birth of the Dracthyr
The dracthyr were created in the ancient past by Neltharion, the Earth-Warder, to serve as soldiers. He combined the essence of dragons with the adaptability of the mortal races. They would train off the coast of the Dragon Isles on an island known as the Forbidden Reach. After a terrible battle, the island would lie abandoned until an ancient enemy awakens the fiercest of warriors, unlike any Azeroth has seen.
Eyes on the Horizon
After returning to the Dragon Isles, Queen Alexstrasza has learned of another disc locked away within Uldaman… one that holds the memories of Tyr himself. Believing this knowledge is needed to restore the power of the Aspects, Alexstrasza has asked her mortal allies to brave the perils of Uldaman and recover Tyr’s memories to secure the future of dragonkind. However, there are others among dragonkind that do not want Alexstrasza’s plans to succeed.
The story continues in World of Warcraft: Dragonflight and Azeroth’s heroes must heed the call to aid Alexstrasza in rebuilding the kingdom and reclaiming the legacy of the dragons.
See you on the Dragon Isles!