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WoW Classic – Lore Special: What is the Nexus War?

What is this all about? The Nexus War in WoW: Wrath of the Lich King was a conflict between the blue dragonflight and an alliance from the Wyrmrest Pact and the magicians of the Kirin Tor. Malygos the Spellweaver, leader of the blue dragonflight, started the war and caused so much mischief that in the end the Horde and Alliance champions combined to defeat him. The war took place during the events of the War against the Lich King Arthas in WotLK.

The Nexus War in detail

In the following paragraphs you will get to know the background of the war and its main actors. We also look at the consequences of the conflict.


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The Nexus War in detail

In the following paragraphs you will get to know the background of the war and its main actors. We also look at the consequences of the conflict.

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The occasion

The cause of the Nexus War was the awakening of the blue dragonflight leader, Malygos, from his madness. 10,000 years ago, this dragon saw his flight slaughtered by his former friend Neltharion (better known as Deathwing). This atrocity drove the dragon insane, and it hid in its lair, the Nexus, for thousands of years.

Eventually, however, Malygos began to regain his former sanity. Responsible for this was Alexstrasza (Dragon Aspect of Life), who wanted to help the blue dragonflight with his rebirth, as well as the return of Tyrygosa (one of the few surviving blue dragons) from Outland with the newly freed nether dragons.

WoW Screenshot Prism Dragon
Nether dragons were involved in the recovery of Mlaygos.

When Malygos regained consciousness, he remembered his old tasks. For as a guardian of arcane magic, he took a closer look at the use of this type of sorcery in the world.

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He found that magic on Azeroth had increased greatly during his long absence and was now apparently out of control. Blame it on the many mortal races that had popped up around the world since then.

His plan to regain control of magic was suitably radical. Using an ancient map of Azeroth’s magical power veins, Malygos began channeling the magical energies into his domain, the Nexus, in Northrend’s Borean tundra and blasting them into the Nether.

The course of the war

What Malygos was unaware of in his plan: Great damage was done to the world of Azeroth and its “soul” through this massive manipulation of magic. The consequences were global natural disasters that were felt all over the world.


Malygos’ actions also caused cracks to open in the fabric of magic. Here at the latest, the Kirin Tor, the magic elite of Dalaran, became aware of the matter.

They therefore used their magical powers to raise the recently rebuilt city of Dalaran into the sky and send it straight to Northrend: on the front lines of the war against the Lich King and the coming conflict with Malygos.

WoW Alexstrasza eye glow purple title title 1280x720
Alexstrasza can’t just let Malygos’ plans stand.

Some of the mages actually thought Malygos’ plan was pretty good and joined the dragon as the feared “magic hunters”. But the remaining Kirin Tor also gained powerful allies.

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The red dragonflight under Alexstrasza were tasked with maintaining life on the world, and Malygo’s insane plan ran counter to that agenda. Even more, after the red flight joined the war, the Wyrmrest Pact was formed. So now the bronze, black and green swarm also stood against Malygos and his henchmen.

In addition to their dragon allies, the Kirin Tor wanted to call on the Alliance and Horde for help. Their leaders, Lord Bolvar and Garrosh Hellscream, were initially reluctant to divert valuable war resources from fighting Arthas, but eventually agreed because Malygo’s plan posed a threat to them as well.

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Still, Malygos, with his might, was a formidable foe not easily confronted. Since the dragon’s lair was virtually impregnable, a cunning plan was needed.

Because only with a special key could you enter the so-called “Eye of Eternity” and this key in turn was guarded by an undead blue dragon named Sapphiron in the infamous magical necropolis Naxxramas. Only after a force of Alliance and Horde warriors recovered the key from Naxxramas was it possible to directly attack Malygos in his lair.

After a hard fight and with the help of the red dragonflight, the heroes were finally able to defeat Malygos and thwart his plans. The dragon died in the process.

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That’s how it all turned out

With the death of Malygos, the Nexus War was over, but the blue dragonflight’s future was in grave jeopardy. In addition, in Alexstrasza’s eyes, the end of Malygos was a necessary evil that would still have serious consequences. After all, the world was now bereft of one of its most powerful guardians.

WoW Classic Naxxramas
In the necropolis of Naxxramas lies the key to defeating Malygos.

What remained of the blue dragonflight then joined the Wyrmrest Pact, with Malygos’ successor Kalecgos appointed as ambassador to Wyrmrest Temple. However, the blue dragons could not agree on a new aspect and so the swarm remained divided into two factions for the time being.

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The faction under Malygos son Arygos, who wanted to go into exile and isolation, and a faction under Kalecgos, which advocated closer cooperation with other swarms and the peoples of Azeroth.


In the end, the crisis among the dragons will only escalate and eventually come to an end. But this is another story. You can find out more about WoW: Wrath of the Lich King in our quiz: Would you join Arthas?