“The sprawling Borean Tundra is home to both the walrus-like tuskarr and the enigmatic taunka. Here also, deep within the mountainous Coldarra, the blue Dragon Aspect, Malygos, has awakened and resumed his guardianship of all magic. Commanding the blue dragonflight from his mystical base, the Nexus, Malygos is determined to seize control of magic throughout the world.”
— The Art of World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, pg. 68
The Borean Tundra (pronounced BOHR-ian, not boh-REHH-an) is located in the far western edge of Northrend, and is the home of the tuskarr, Drakkari trolls, and blue dragons. The Undead Scourge and the naga also inhabit the zone. Important landmarks of the region include the tuskarr capital of Kaskala and the Riplash Ruins. Coldarra is an island just off the coast. Kaskala is currently under siege and the tuskarr have moved to Unu'pe.
Most of the Borean Tundra is empty ice. Tuskarr are the dominant presence in the Borean Tundra. However, they keep near their villages, and one can go for days without seeing another living creature. Tuskarr mainly care about fishing, whaling and protecting their villages. Tuskarr will fend off hungry Drakkari, and even fight wayward nerubians, and are formidable foes; but they never attack anyone without a good reason. Drakkari wander the tundra, but not in any significant numbers, most are content to roam alone or in small packs. They have no city in the tundra, but live in several camps, none big enough to have names. They harass the tuskarr from time to time, but every time the tuskarr gather their forces and send the Drakkari running. Nerubians wander about as well, but only in small packs. Naga live near the south end, in the Riplash Ruins. Blue dragons from Coldarra also fly over the tundra from time to time. Scourge scouts straggle over from the lake area.
The Borean Tundra is not an important part of Northrend. It’s too isolated and too barren to be desirable and has too much shoreline to be defensible. Tuskarr like it because of that expansive shore, and the Riplash Ruins gives the naga a perfect view of anyone approaching across the ocean from the south. Drakkari hunt here because they can and because the tundra provides little cover for wildlife. Most others stay well away, preferring the forested areas to the east.
Borean Tundra contains bases of both factions, and does not have an emphasis for a specific faction. There is a port between Borean Tundra and Howling Fjord that uses a giant turtle with a deck on its back as a quick means to travel between the 2 starting zones. There is a murloc town that may be used after some quests for D.E.H.T.A.. The murlocs can actually talk and repair your equipment. They also have quests against an infected camp across the cove.
The nerubians were in the Borean Tundra first, according to the ruins. However, the ruins may be parts of Azjol-Nerub that were thrust up from underground, unless it was an experiment to see if they could be comfortable living above ground. If the latter is the case it may have failed, since it is a ruin. The tuskarr were next — Kaskala's oldest village is at least several centuries old, and the rest grew up around it as family members split off to start their own smaller families. The Drakkari are more recent additions to the area and have no fixed settlement. The Scourge rarely appears, and its agents never stay longer than it takes to patrol and look for potential dangers or new recruits.
In World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, the Horde has established the settlement of Warsong Hold under the command of the Mag'hari son of Grom, Garrosh Hellscream. The Horde has created a pact with the local and culturally similar tuskarr, who are under siege from naga based at the Riplash Ruins. These naga intend to use their generators to melt the surrounding ice caps (though these plans have been thrown off course by their defeat by the Kvaldir, a clan of Vrykul which are also raiding the tuskarr). Garrosh and his forces have also discovered the enigmatic taunka, an ancient offshoot of the tauren race thought to be lost forever.
The Borean Tundra is wide, flat, and cold. The landscape varies greatly. Hard but farmable soil in the south lead to nourishing steam pools in the middle. Along the west edge, nasty cliffs rise up and then shear off into the Westrift. The north is home to grasslands and an area of steep hills. The east is snow-covered and the most brutal this area has to offer.
At its northeast edge the tundra runs into the mountain range of Lake Wintergrasp, a vast frozen lake that effectively shields it from the Dragonblight and Icecrown Glacier. The only way to reach these areas overland is across the mountains bordering the Dragonblight or through the Sholazar Basin, neither which are easy. An army would be suicidal to attempt either. Not many plants can survive up here. Without any cover the wind is fierce enough to tear flesh, and people can barely hear themselves when they shout. A few trees manage to hang on, evergreens, but the small twisted kind rather than the tall proud ones out east. Wolves and rabbits and foxes and even bears, roam this area. However, most of the life is in the water. The zone is separated from the Dragonblight by an unnamed river.
To the northwest, one can see the high plateau of Coldarra. It is high enough to be blanketed in snow year round. Lately, rumblings have shaken the earth around the lone island. Geologists are concerned with the appearance of rifts in the crust and worry that a massive earthquake could tear Coldarra apart. This would have massive repercussions on the stability of Borean Tundra and possibly Northrend itself.
This is the longest region in Northrend, running from its southwest tip up to Lake Wintergrasp. The ground here is more dirt than rock, and small trees and scrub dot the landscape. But everything is still frozen solid. The tundra avoided most of Northrend’s problems for a while, but the Scourge have been sighted fortifying holdings in the northeast. Perhaps the Borean Tundra owes its fortune to its relative isolation. Access to the land can be found along its southern edge through the ocean.
Warsong Hold has a zeppelin tower connecting it to Durotar, and Valiance Keep has a dock connecting it to Stormwind City.
The major questlines explore a variety of conflicts across the zone. The native tuskarr and taunka are being uprooted from their villages by the Kvaldir. Multiple sinkholes are disgorging crypt fiends around the recently established fortifications of Warsong Hold and Valiance Keep. Territorial aggression is being observed in the Magmothran magnataur. The Fizzcrank gnomes have awakened a flesh-hating terror, fused from abandoned Titan technology.
In the course of battling these threats, Warcraft's player heroes will also uncover a handful of political plots. The first sparks of the wolvar/Oracle conflict are evident as these groups also have their opponents in the Winterfin tribe of murlocs. An organization known as the Druids for the Ethical and Humane Treatment of Animals are conscripting everyone they can, to bring Nesingwary's poachers to justice. The wizards of Dalaran are investigating the kidnapping of magical talent from the areas surrounding the Amber Ledge.
Finally, after these many trials, the player will come to confront the subversive figure known as Prince Valanar, atop the floating necropolis of Naxxanar.
Where to start? Well, somebody would say all the way back to Warcraft I (aka Warcraft: Orcs & Humans or the First War), or maybe Warcraft II (aka Tides of Darkness or the Second War up to and including Wrath of the Lich King, Warcraft III is the best place to start. Also, this game then elicits more interesting questions. For instance, how Illidan Stormrage became so hated or where the Scourge started. You will learn all the history and geography of the Warcraft with our help and dedication.