Gades is a far cry from the scrawny Orc he once was. Years of being fed dark-magic, souls and martial prowess have turned him into a towering monster comparable to his comrade and ally, Drathnor the Bloodletter. He and the Bloodletter often engage in brutal combats designed to test eachother. It is these rivalries that continue to hone Gades, and perhaps give him motivation in his unlife.
He fights you not because you have wronged him, but simply because you are there.
From a early age Gades was fascinated with the prospect of worshipping his ancestors or communing with them.
Although contact with the Draenei in those days was small, Gades often would sneak to Auchindoun to observe the Death Priests, and mimic what they did. Imagine his suprise when eventually his incantations to the dead, resulted in the dead replying to him.
Learning many secrets from the deceased of Auchindoun, secrets which he discovered from the spirits of the fallen eventually proved to be the gravamen which saved him from death at Gul'dan's hands.
When Gul'dan opened his school on Necromancy; Gades excelled soon becoming a potent necromancer and shadowbinder. Unfortunately for him, the caste of sorcerers which he belonged to likely espoused too many of the Draenei's teachings.
As a consequence of this, when the time came to determine how to grant Doomhammer perfect undead soldiers; the Necrolytes found themselves first of the casualties of the Second War.
The Second War:
With the slaughter of the Warlock Clans by Doomhammer, Gul'dan was left without any true sorcerers, and the Orcish Necromancer Priests proved a poor substitute. In a effort to provide Doomhammer an undead warrior loyal to the Horde Gul'dan turned to the Necrolytes. He sensed much potential in them, but not while they were living. To this end, Gul'dan ordered the sacrifice of the Necrolytes transmuting their hearts into powerful focuses of necrotic magic.
Inevitably it was Gades turn, and he was ritually sacrificed on an Altar of the Storms. But unlike his weaker brethren, Gades was not so willing to fade to the dark beyond. Using his own necromancy he stilled his bodily functions to a crawl, appearing dead when in reality he was still very much alive.
Shortly after his percieved sacrifice, he rose again to the suprise of the Orcs present for the ritual and slew Thurok Deathhand, a Orcish Warlock in human form who had just inheritted his heart transmuted into a Truncheon gem. Destroying the Orcish Warlock in a duel of magic, Gades consuming his own soul to further his own powers and complete his ascension into a undead orc sorcerer.
For this act of brutality and dominance in the face of what was considered "assured death" he was installed as a Slayer of the Shadowmoon Clan, and sent to the ruins of Karabor to begin martial training in earnest. Or maybe it was just that Ner'zhul wanted a weapon he could use later against his errant student. Gades was a good weapon.
As Gades served Ner'zhul and the old Horde, he did not initially follow Doomhammer to Azeroth. During the sundering of Draenor, he fled through the Dark Portal with many of the Warsong Clan and Bleeding Hollow Clan, evading capture. For many years Gades believed that Khadgar had maliciously caused the destruction of his world and sought the lore he would need to slay him and avenge his comrade, Dentarg.
Living in Duskwood, he hid in the proximity of Karazhan, ever seeking lore and knowledge to increase his arts, and divine what had happened to the remainder of his people who fled through the other portals. Over the years as Duskwood darkened, villagers made whispers of a "Dark Rider". Some of these sightings likely were of Gades, but others particularly in the years leading up to the third war, were correspondences between himself, the Scourge and Morbent Fel. Through Fel he learned of the survival of Ner'zhul and his return to Azeroth.
In a journey not unlike Arthas' years later, Gades resolved that he would go to the frozen northern wastes, and find his chieftain. But upon arriving at the Frozen Throne, Gades learned that the Orc known as Ner'zhul had long since vanished, and the new Lich King as Ner'zhul had become, had no interest in his clan.
Gades will was supressed, and his body enthralled by Ner'zhul's vast psychic energies. Like many others, Gades was forced into subservience to the Scourge, for whom he fought viciously. The only regret Gades ever had however was that Ner'zhul arrogantly stole his will. Had he only asked, or commanded him as a chieftain Gades would of likely done all of the atrocities which the Lich King commanded and forced him to commit; willingly. But no, Ner'zhul suppressed his will, and in so doing insulted his honor tore his pride to tatters, and for it, Gades came to despise the former orc planning in what parts of his mind remained his own for the day that he would have revenge.
Many years later, Gades was freed. He took revenge on his former Chieftain and the human that had become his new "favorite", Arthas Menethil. It's rumored that Gades may of taken some of the shards of Frostmourne into his keeping, and even now works the Runeforges late into the night, working on the crafting of a set of "dual-blades".
Only time will tell what Dragmire's plan is.
- Enter the Necrolyte (Warcraft 1):
Practitioners of the Orcish religions, these binders of souls command the black powers that hold control over the earth. Linked into the dominions of the lower planes, Necrolytes have power over all things dark and evil, including the raising of fallen warriors to create armies of the undead. Through ceremonies performed at their Temples, they learn to warp the essence of shadow to use for their advantage.
During the First War, the main purpose of the necrolytes was to bolster the orcish forces with undead troops, similar to the necromancers of the Scourge decades later. While Necrolytes did possess other magical abilities, they were quite paltry when compared to those of the other orcish warlocks.
- The slaughter of the Necrolytes
Unfortunately for the Necrolytes, the rise of Orgrim Doomhammer was a precursor to their downfall. After Doomhammer spared Gul'dan's life, Gul'dan promised to create a host of undead riders capable of using magic. The necrolytes weren't up to the task, which frustrated Gul'dan. He did nevertheless see potential in them, but not while they were among the living. Gul'dan ritually executed them all.
Gul'dan went on to create the death knights. Each newly-risen death knight was given a jeweled truncheon through which it could better focus its powers. Into these jewels were infused the raw, necromantic powers of the freshly slain necrolytes.
- The Immortal Soldiers of the Horde (The First Death Knights)
The original death knights were created for Orgrim Doomhammer by Gul'dan as powerful soldiers of the Horde. These death knights were created by placing the souls of the slain warlocks of the Shadow Council into the corpses of fallen Stormwind knights, the first of whom was Teron Gorefiend. Unlike modern death knights of the Scourge, these ghoulish fiends were not battle hardened warriors; they were insidious necromancers who possessed superior intellect and tremendous magical power. They often favored the use of terror tactics and reanimated the corpses of enemy soldiers who fell in battle to serve them as mindless undead minions. Most of these death knights were destroyed during and after the Second War, either killed by the Alliance or transformed into liches by Kil'jaeden.
- "Are you feeling angry? Livid? Humiliated? Is that it?! Fool! 'You dont KNOW what humiliation is!!"
-Spoken to Thurok Deathhand, shortly before throttling him to death.
- "On these hands is the blood of countless humans.. Humans that you and your masters sent against me in a failed effort to contain my anger. I am a slayer of Clan Shadowmoon, the last of my kind. On my shoulders rests the glory of an extinct warrior clan, and wrapped around me like a cloak is a cunning and knowledge spanning ages of time-honored teachings. I am an instrument of my Warchief's wrath. Now by Ner'zhul's name.. DIE!!"
-The Burning Crusade
- "It is time to take what is rightfully mine. I will not live my life as your pawn any longer, no that time has ended. Every second that you continue to exist, is a affront to my honor! But no more Ner'zhul, by these hands you will be cut down piece by piece, the way "you" have cut down my pride!!"
-The Wrath of the Lich King
- "No more. Before we are finished on this island one shall stand, the other shall fall."
- "This is bad comedy! Come! Come and be crushed as Ner'zhul was!!"
-Cataclysm ( Gades vs. Mal'zogg )
- Gades came out of retirement upon learning that his former rival fell in battle. Mal'zogg and him had a turbulent relationship that sometimes bordered on hostility. The news that Gul'dan survived the battles on Draenor has convinced the old rogue that he has one final duty to the Horde. Fight until the day he falls. As his wolf-brother did. And so the Butcher of Karabor returned to war.
- I've been playing Gades since Wrath of the Lich King. I never thought Blizzard would eventually turn the Shadowmoon Clan into what they are, but in many ways it is a delightful turn of events; as it has fleshed this character out that much better.