There are a few reasons why The Wrath of the Lich King is considered to be the most famous and difficult expansion in the World of Warcraft franchise. There were a lot of changes that made the game more complicated, including a new level cap of 80, a new character class, new mechanics, and of course powerful enemies.
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The Lich King is responsible for all the liches on this list. That’s why he’s the king. Of course, it would be more correct to call him a death knight, but we will not talk more about him, because you already know him so well, because the Lich King is rightfully considered the most popular villain in the Warcraft universe.
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He is the most famous lich in World of Warcraft. Kel’Thuzad was once a mage from Dalaran but was expelled from the order by the leaders of the Kirin Tor for his addiction to necromancy. Then he was not taken aback and went in search of the Lich King in the hope of deepening his knowledge. The Lich King empowered the necromancer and entrusted him with the creation of the Cult of the Damned. The members of the cult were supposed to spread the plague throughout the Eastern Kingdoms, and, it must be said, they succeeded.
Kel’Thuzad himself fell at the hands of Arthas and was resurrected by him – however, later, when Arthas had already fallen under the power of the Lich King. To bring the necromancer back to life, the prince had to destroy the entire kingdom of Quel’Thalas and use the energy of the Sunwell. After that, Kel’Thuzad summoned Archimonde to Azeroth, who destroyed Dalaran. As it later became known, the Lich and Arthas conspired against the Burning Legion, and while the Legion was busy invading, Arthas traveled to Northrend to merge with Ner’zhul. Kel’Thuzad remained in Lordaeron.
When the Lich King’s power waned and Sylvanas turned against Arthas, it was Kel’Thuzad who saved his master and helped him return to Northrend. Then Kel’Thuzad built a flying necropolis over the Plaguelands and began to grow in power. He managed to defile the sword Ashbringer, forged to fight the undead, and turn the owner of this sword into a death knight, but then the heroes still put an end to the atrocities of the necromancer, killing him in the original Naxxramas. However, as you already know, the phylactery survived that time, which allowed him to return to this world once again in the Wrath of the Lich King expansion.
This is the only lich on our list that does not look like a huge flying skeleton, and his story sounds atypical. According to the plot, most liches are born at the behest of more powerful beings, and not of their own free will. That is why the Lich King appears in one way or another in all the previous paragraphs. As you already understood, Gunther the Wizard is an exception.
During his lifetime, Gunther was a powerful magician and necromancer. In the Third War, he fell victim to the Scourge but then freed himself from the will of the Lich King. This happened before the undead lord was weakened and Sylvanas managed to lead the Forsaken. In other words, Gunther was so strong that he was able to overcome the influence of the owner and deliberately turned into a lich.
Timolain the Accursed
This lich was added to the game in Legion. Timolen can be seen during the quest chain for the hidden appearance of the artifact, Ashbringer, but his history stretches back to ancient times. In Classic WoW, there was an item called Talisman of Timolen, which could be obtained from slime in the Hinterlands. The item was intended for some task, but no one knew for what. After the release of patch 1.7, the item stopped dropping altogether. At the time, many players were obsessed with finding the Ashbringer. Based on numerous Easter eggs, they assumed that the mysterious Timolen was the creator of the legendary sword. According to the most common version, the developers wanted to add the Ashbringer to the game, but at the last moment they replaced it with Thunderfury, and Timolen’s Talisman got on the servers by mistake and was later removed. In Legion, the developers decided to revive this idea and remembered all the rumors that surrounded the Ashbringer in classic WoW, including the return of slime and Timolen’s Talisman to the game.
According to the new quest chain, members of the Scarlet Crusade wanted to kill the necromancer named Timolen, as he created the Shadow Shard. In order not to leave evidence, the inquisitors fed the victim a voracious slime. While the mucus was digesting his body, Timolen took advantage of necromancy and created a phylactery in the hope that it would work after his death, that is, like Gunther, Timolen turned into a lich on his own and consciously, and not at the will of the Lich King. As a result of all these twists and turns, the Shard of Darkness ended up at the bottom of the lake.
World of Warcraft: The Wrath of the Lich King was released in 2008 and quickly gained popularity among gamers worldwide. This game still has a wonderful rating so if you didn’t play it – you should try it!