Field Photographer Friday is a weekly look at the lore and history behind locations around World of Warcraft. This week, we're taking a look at Ravenholdt Manor!
Ravenholdt Manor is located in the mountains between Hillsbrad Foothills and The Hinterlands on the Eastern Kingdoms continent. Not much is known about the early days of the Manor, but the building’s architecture along with its location means it was probably part of the Alterac Kingdom around the time of the Second War. The kingdom came to an end following the War, when it’s leader, Aliden Perenolde, was thrown out by the other human kingdoms. Aliden went on to form The Syndicate, a criminal faction of humans who see the Alliance as their mortal enemies and the Horde as nothing more than brutes to be used as slaves.
Ravenholdt Manor has been present in World of Warcraft since the game was released and is home to the Ravenholdt faction (less commonly known as the Assassin’s League), led by Jorach Ravenholdt, who are mortal enemies of The Syndicate. Their exact importance and prominence have always been a bit obscure, with most of their members being thieves and assassins they have an obvious rogue-orientation and prefer that no one knows too much about them. Up until the Warlords of Draenor expansion, the Manor served as the training grounds for Horde and Alliance rogues honing their Detect Traps ability. This involved navigating a tunnel full of traps before reaching the Manor and completing the training.
During the Cataclysm expansion, Horde and Alliance rogues working on their legendary Fangs of the Father daggers were sent to Ravenholdt Manor to take back a stolen black dragon egg. Upon arriving, they discovered the egg had already hatched into the black dragon known as Wrathion. After a few stern words, Wrathion sent the rogues out to assassinate the remaining black dragons, while assuring them he’s free from Deathwing’s influence and that the remaining black dragons still remain a threat. Wrathion would go on to be a prominent figure during the Mists of Pandaria expansion, pledging his allegiance to either Horde or Alliance heroes by assisting them in developing their legendary cloaks to help face the Burning Legion threat he says is on the horizon.
The one constant claim to fame Ravenholdt Manor has had since it was first introduced is being the source of one of the most difficult factions to gain Exalted status across all of Azeroth. The most straightforward way to gain reputation is to kill members of The Syndicate, however, this will only get you part way. To get all the way to Exalted, you must bring Heavy Junkboxes to Winstone Wolfe, who hands them out for other rogues to practice lock picking. The quest to turn in Junkboxes is available to any class, but only rogues are able to pickpocket enemies to gain the Junkboxes. This is one of the few Classic World of Warcraft factions that belongs to the Insane in the Membrane achievement that remained unchanged with the Cataclysm expansion.
Ravenholdt Manor is sure to continue existing in the shadows for decades to come, its inhabitants only showing themselves when necessary and otherwise influencing events from the dark corners of Azeroth.
The last known leader of The Syndicate, former ruler of the Alterac Kingdom.
Leader of the Ravenholdt faction (AKA the League of Assassins).
The Black Prince, one of the last known black dragons still alive.
Join me every Friday as I work to expand my lore knowledge while completing the Field Photographer achievement. Read lore summaries for each location and follow up with resources where you can go more indepth! I encourage you to share your own selfies and any additional lore resources you know of in the comments below, or tweet me @PrestonDvorak. Bonus points* if the selfie is somewhere you shouldn’t be (such as an Alliance player in Orgrimmar)!
*Points are meaningless and have no monetary value, but they’ll never give you up or let you down.