|Previous: Kil'jaeden's war against the Lich King|
|Concurrent: Kil'jaeden's war against the Lich King|
|Next: Kil'jaeden's war against the Lich King|
|Plaguelands Civil War|
|Place: Tirisfal Glades and Western Plaguelands, Lordaeron|
|Outcome: Forsaken victory
|Major Battles: |
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The Plaguelands Civil War was a civil war fought primarily between the factions of the Undead Scourge, the Burning Legion, and the Forsaken / Alliance. Its events were chronicled from King Arthas to A New Power in Lordaeron.
While Archimonde was defeated and killed by the Great Alliance during the Battle of Mount Hyjal, the remaining dreadlords of Lordaeron, Bal'nazzar, Detheroc and Varimathras were not informed of their master's defeat. What they did not know was that Archimonde's death gave more leeway for Ner'zhul to act. This along with the growing resentment of Scourge figures such as Kel'Thuzad only worsened the potential situation the dreadlords could find themselves in.
Breaking into the dreadlords' chambers, Arthas proclaimed the defeat and death of Archimonde, and manages to scare off the three dreadlords. Declaring himself king, his first order is to purge the remaining humans of Lordaeron. Despite the arrival of the paladins, Dagren the Orcslayer, Magroth the Defender and Halahk the Lifebringer, Arthas and his men are able to kill the latter two and eliminate nearly every human in the kingdom. During and after the battle, however, Arthas suffers numerous head pains, with the Lich King stating that a "danger" was coming to Northrend, and that Arthas needed to come and rescue him.
Creation of the Forsaken
Because of the havoc at Northrend, the Lich King's powers dwindled along with Arthas', and this caused some of the undead Scourge to have their own, independent thinking. Having regained her own sentience, the Dark Ranger, Sylvanas Windrunner was approached by the dreadlords. The dreadlords staged an ambush against the new king at Capital City, but Arthas is able to evade their grasp. Reaching the outskirts of the city, Arthas is deceived by Sylvanas' banshees and lured into a trap, but the timely arrival of Kel'Thuzzad saves the king, and Sylvanas is forced to retreat.
While Arthas completes his preparations to leave for Northrend, Sylvanas begins to ponder on her newfound freedom. Approached by Varimathras to serve the Burning Legion, she rejects his offer, and the two square off at the Trisfal Glades. Despite her numerical disadvantage, Sylvanas prevails by having her Banshees possess the numerous units within the area; including the ogre warlord Mug'thol and Snarlmane. The defeated Varimathras pleads for his life, and promises to give Sylvanas vital information regarding the defenses of his brothers. Joining the Dark Ranger, the two reach Detheroc's base at the Western Plauguelands, and quickly find that Detheroc has possessed the human leader, Lord Garithos. Making use of the cover of night, Sylvanas' forces are able to take their enemy by surprise and score another major victory, killing Detheroc in the process. Upon Detheroc's defeat, Garithos and the humans under him are freed from the mind control, and aid Sylvanas' forces in attacking Bal'nazzar's forces at Capital City. Forming a joint attack, Bal'nazzar is seemingly killed by the combined forces of Sylvanas and Garithos, but she quickly turns on the human commander, and she orders that Varimathras kill him.
Establishing her forces as an independent faction, Sylvanas formally declares the formation of the Forsaken, a group of undead independent of the Scourge.