BySimon Rune Knudsen, writer at Creators.co
A level 110 tryhard Meepo picker enthusiastic about dad rock, Warhammer 40k and weird beers.
Simon Rune Knudsen

For a Teen rated game, World of Warcraft can get pretty grim sometimes. Beneath the friendly exterior of pandas, honorable orcs, bright colors and its cartoonish art-style lies a world with an incredibly macabre lore that regularly delves into themes of violence, sexuality and betrayal.

The Culling of Stratholme, where Arthas murdered his own people in droves, is just one example that is still causing disturbing ripples in today. The cruel human experiments and torture conducted by the playable Forsaken would be another. Or what about the fact that gnolls, one of the first enemies you meet in the game as Alliance, decorate their tents with the skin of human faces?

Ranking The 10 Scariest Places in WoW

After entering the Karazhan Crypts.
After entering the Karazhan Crypts.

These horrifying hints seem to be everywhere in the game, just hidden well enough to stay out of sight of 12-year-old Brian who's playing the game at his mother's mercy.

The cutesy look of everything WoW seems to deceive most people into thinking the game is innocent, apart from its tendency to trap people in the online world through addiction. Fools. They don't know the true horrors that lurk within this devilish game.

Take a look for yourself. Here's our ranking of the 10 most terrifying places in World of Warcraft.

10: Dawning Woods Catacombs

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Duskwood, beneath Raven Hill Cemetery.
  • Still available: Yes, in an altered form.

Beneath Raven Hill Cemetery we find catacombs filled with ghouls and skeletons raised from the people buried there. The whole infestation is the product of Morbent Fel, a rogue necromancer, who prior to WoW: Cataclysm resided at the house on top of Raven Hill.

Today, he hides in a secret laboratory, which is found through a narrow dirt passage, beginning in one of the back rooms of the maze-like catacombs. He's no longer human; the constant dying of being a quest-subject, who had to be killed off for loot, has caused him to return from the dead as a powerful lich.

9: The Abyssal Depths Of Vashj'ir

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Northwest Vashj'ir.
  • Still available: Yes.

Tour mileage with Vashj'ir's Abyssal may vary, depending on your phobias. If you suffer from thalassophobia, the fear of the sea, this might very well be the worst place in WoW you can imagine.

It's the deepest part of the underwater area of Vashj'ir, and the ominous music, crushing depths and brooding darkness can induce a somewhat claustrophobic feeling. Oh, and it's also filled to the brink with disgusting Old God minions with tentacles spewing from every opening.

8: The Cannibal Troll Orphanage

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: In the north of the Outland version of Nagrand.
  • Still available: Yes.

This is one of those implementation where you, no matter how hard you try, can't wrap your head around Blizzard's thought process. Here, we have Challe, a female troll who's apparently running a cannibal troll orphanage. But by all accounts it looks like she's actually eating the children she's supposed to take care of.

The first thing you notice is that there are explosives in the sandbox where the children play. Then you'll notice the baby tauren dolls that are swinging around in that super weird mill machine next to the hut. There's a rotten body in the doghouse, and the cages behind the orphanage are populated by nothing but bones. What the hell, Challe?

7: The Altar of Damnation

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Near the Fel Pits in Shadowmoon Valley in the Outland.
  • Still available: Yes.

This is one of the places where a defining moment in Warcraft lore took place. Gul'dan, the no-good orc warlock, severed his ENTIRE race's connection to the elemental spirits of their home world, basically condemning them to what would be nearly a hundred years of bad and bloodthirsty times. Why? Well, unlimited power of course.

Going to the Altar of Damnation in-game displays a small vision where the misdeed is played over and over again. Gul'dan performs the foul, demon-infused ritual, wresting the power of the elements from the peaceful elemental spirits, so he can thwart the draenei race. The act scorched Shadowmoon Valley and eventually shattered the whole planet of Draenor, killing thousands of living beings.

6: Stratholme

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Northwestern part of Eastern Plaguelands.
  • Still available: In an altered form, yes.

Stratholme has been burning for some 20 years, which kinda goes to show how screwed the place is. Ever since Arthas put most of the city's population to the axe in the events of Warcraft 3, it's been a... disturbing place to spend your time. In the early years of WoW, the city was divided between the Scarlet Crusade and the Scourge's forces, which had players facing off against both a dreadlord and the dreaded Baron Rivendare.

But the bosses aren't what made the place so uncomfortable. No, it was more the hellish scene of the ever-burning houses, the constant and meaningless onslaught of the mindless Scourge and the very thought of how you, as 12-year-old kid, actually controlled Arthas when he purged the population of a major city.

5: The Temple of Ahn'Qiraj

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: South Silithus.
  • Still available: Yes.

In the Warcraft setting, there are basically two big bads: The Burning Legion and the Old Gods. The former has a sort of reasoning behinds its evil, while the latter, the Old Gods, are simply pure destructive chaos. In Ahn'Qiraj, players faced this evil chaos for the first time, and when doing so was exposed to some disturbing stuff.

As you close in on C'Thun inside the Temple of Ahn'Qiraj, the malevolent god will regularly try to deceive and mindcontrol your character. Whispers like "You are already dead," "your friends will abandon you" and "your courage will fail" will be audiable in a hissing voice that scares the living shit out of us to this day.

4: The Lordaeron Throne Room

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Undercity in the southern part Tirisfal Glades.
  • Still available: Yes.

This is another place that is forever intertwined with a depressing piece of Warcraft history and it is as such a depressing place in itself. This is where the corrupted Arthas murdered the king of Lordaeron, his own father Terenas Menethil, by piercing him with the unreasonably large Frostmourne, effectively bringing about the ruin of his former kingdom.

Walking towards the throne room in WoW, you can hear the echoing sound of the bell that rang to welcome back the kingdom's prince. Venturing further, you'll hear the cheering and applauding crowds of people that gathered on the fateful day, and finally, in the throne room, you can still make out the haunted dialogue between father and son. Creepy!

3: The Crypts Of Karazhan

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Outside Karazhan in Deadwind Pass.
  • Still available: Yes.

Whatever the plans were for the crypts beneath Karazhan, they must have been sinister. That at least the impression you get when you actually venture to the dreaded place beneath the barren grounds of Deadwind Pass.

Piles upon piles of skeletal remains of creatures and humanoids alike, torture devices, chains and creepy nothingness. It's clear that the crypts of Karazhan were never fully developed, but in some way that actually makes things even more terrifying down there. What was the purpose of all these dead, chained people floating upside down in the green, tainted water? The fear of the unknown is the greatest fear of all.

2: Thaddius

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Naxxramas
  • Still available: Yes, in the level 80 version.

Poor old Thaddius. Since the release of Naxxramas in 2006, this flesh titan has been tortured to insanity countless times. Though he looks scary enough in his own right, it isn't his appearance the puts him on the second place of this list. No, it's his screams.

As you venture forth into the Construct Quarter of the Naxxramas raid you'll hear the helpless and agonizing screams of Thaddius as he is being forced into submission through excruciating torture. Listening to the painful outcries in the creepy setting of a Scourge necropolis is incredibly disturbing to this day. Just try for yourself.

1: The Children of Goldshire

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
  • Where: Elwynn Forest, between Stormwind and Goldshire.
  • Still available: Yes.

A reference to Stephen King's 'Children of the Corn', the Children of Goldshire are six seemingly innocent kids that roam Elwynn Forest. They head out from Stormwind, going close to Northshire Abbey and the Crystal Lake, shuffling around in a formation that seems to form the shape of a pentagram.

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Their final destination is always a house located in the northeastern part of Goldshire. They go there at 7.40 every morning, climb to the second floor, where you, if you follow them, will hear ominous music playing. The kids will get into pentagram formation once again, and at some point you'll get a terrifying message that can be everything from a voice whispering "You will die" or "Death is close" to a banshee scream.

According to Blizzard, the children are a reference to the Diablo games. Whatever the reason for their implementation, they're pretty damn disturbing. Why do you have to drag children into this, Blizzard?

What is the most terrifying thing you've experienced while playing WoW?

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