[Top Ten] Best World of Warcraft Trailers (Ranked)

World of Warcraft Best Trailers Ranked
Journey through the stories of Azeroth.

Discover the best World of Warcraft trailers of all time!

10. The Burning Crusade (2007)

A blood elf pets a Mana Wyrm

The Burning Crusade Trailer

The Burning Crusade was World of Warcraft’s first expansion, introducing two new races, a new zone, and the ability to fly. It also brought back a lot of beloved characters from Warcraft 3 such as Illidan Stormrage and Kael'thas Sunstrider, which the community was more than excited for. While definitely one of the shorter expansion trailers, it doesn’t need a long run time to be truly remarkable.

What’s Great About This Trailer:


  • The Return of Warcraft 3: It’s no secret that much of the WoW community views Warcraft 3 as the pinnacle of amazing storytelling. This trailer promised to bring back beloved characters from that game and  wrap up their stories, a concept that really excited the player base.
  • Incorporating the Player Characters: While there are some easy-to-spot lore characters in this trailer, much of the run time is just showing off random adventures, i.e player characters! This was the last trailer to do this, but by showing off player characters it really gives a sense of immersion and makes the trailer feel much more personal to each player! 
  • That ending shot: Let’s be honest, this trailer is just straight-up cool. Getting to see an HD version of Illidan crush the skull of Gul'dan and yell his iconic phrase “You are not prepared” just makes you want to get out of your chair and yell along in excitement!



9. Shadowlands (2020)

Bolvar Fordragon, the current Lich King

Shadowlands Trailer

While the expansion itself may not have lived up to the hype, there’s no denying that the trailer for Shadowlands goes hard. This expansion brought us out of Azeroth and into the lands of death, and the trailer promised an end to the Sylvanas storyline that had been building up since the beginning of Legion in 2016. With an action-packed battle to analyze, let’s see why this trailer is such a hit.


What’s Great About This Trailer:

  • The Setting: With Wrath of the Lich King being such a beloved expansion, seeing Ice Crown Citadel in full 4K HD glory is quite a treat for fans. With many players marching into ICC every single week to try their luck at getting Invincible (or Invisible, as most of us call it), everyone is very familiar with this location. That familiarity leads to a sense of payoff when you recognize the tiny details in the cinematic that show up in game!
  • The Battle of the Century: This fight is an absolute banger, and it’s such a fun ride that it can be hard to figure out where to begin. First off, Sylvanas and Bolvar are major lore characters who are renowned for their strength and skill, so getting to see them duke it out is a quick way to make any lore fan completely nerd out. There are also plenty of details for those who might not know about the lore but are very familiar with WoW’s classes. Real class abilities are used in this fight, and getting to see the Lich King himself pop Remorseless Winter just like any other Frost Death Knight really adds to the immersion of the cinematic!
  • The Fake-Out: Admit it, when Sylvanas lifted up the Helm of Domination, there was a brief second where you thought she was going to put it on. I’m also sure your second thought after was “How is it going to fit over those pointy elf ears?”. That fake-out moment adds such  great energy to the whole cinematic, and the reveal of the helm shattering along with the sky has your jaw hitting the floor. If you haven’t seen the Blizzcon video of this cinematic I cannot recommend it enough, the reactions of the crowd to that moment are hilarious and wonderful.


8. Warlords of Draenor (2014)

Grom Hellscream raises his axe

Warlords of Draenor Trailer

Warlords of Draenor has certainly earned itself the reputation of being the worst expansion in the history of World of Warcraft. Despite the community’s dislike for this expansion, this cinematic is undeniably iconic and exciting. From the killer appearance of Mannoroth to that insane Garrosh reveal, let’s dive into this masterpiece! 

What’s Great About This Trailer:

  • The Storytelling: Five minutes isn’t exactly a lot of time to tell a compelling story, but this cinematic makes it happen! From the opening shots to that final look at The Dark Portal, this trailer keeps you hooked. Not to mention that it’s covering and changing a crucial piece of Warcraft lore, which is more than enough to keep anyone on the edge of their seats.
  • The Quality: No matter how divisive the Warcraft community gets, basically everyone can agree that the art and cinematic teams always knock it out of the park. This trailer is no exception. Warcraft’s trailers have always looked pretty top-tier, but the difference in detail between this and Mists of Pandaria is staggering. Look at the pores you can see on Garrosh’s face! As good as it is, I have to say I’ve never wanted to see Gul’Dan in such high quality. 
  • The Music: Hearing that darker, more Orc-like version of World of Warcraft’s main theme is absolutely chilling, and it immediately gets your heart racing. The shrill notes when Mannoroth is revealed add so much to the trailer’s tension. Lastly, of course, that beautiful melody when Mannoroth dies and Garrosh is revealed is easily some of the best music that has ever been featured in WoW. 

7. Legion (2016)

Varian Wrynn, the leader of the Alliance

Legion Trailer

If you loved seeing demons in the last trailer, then buckle up for this one. Considered by many to be one of World of Warcraft’s greatest expansions, Legion brought back the demonic threat we fought in The Burning Crusade, and from this killer cinematic you could tell everything was on the line.


What’s Great About This Trailer:

  • Varian Wrynn: Varian Wrynn is easily one of World of Warcraft’s most popular characters, especially on the Alliance. His character has gone through a huge arc in WoW’s long history, and his fantastic monologue in this trailer really shows how he’s gone from a ‘hit first ask questions later’ leader, to a strong yet diplomatic king. Spoiler alert, but given that Varian heroically sacrifices himself not long after this cinematic, it really is a great way to finish off his amazing story. 
  • The Action: While the first half of this trailer is very character driven and focused on Varian, the last half is one of the best action set pieces in Warcraft history! From Sylvanas coming to the rescue to the ships crashing into each other and into the ocean, there’s plenty to feast your eyes on. Not to mention that Varian going on his killing spree on the beach is super impressive and just plain fun to watch!
  • Demons, Demons, and more Demons: Demons have been a pretty big staple for WoW villains. They’ve been featured in the lore since the very beginning, and it’s not uncommon for them to make frequent appearances in most of the expansions. However, this was the first time we got to see them at this strength, and in this quality. That shot showing the Tomb of Sargeras is both awesome to look at and absolutely terrifying. Every player who saw it was super excited to dive into the expansion and fight back the Legion! 

6. Dragonflight (2022)

Alextrasza roars atop the Dragon Isles

Dragonflight Trailer

Still unreleased at the time of writing this, Dragonflight is World of Warcraft’s next expansion. The trailer was released earlier this year, and it’s no wonder why it got everyone buzzing with excitement. With the expansion supposedly coming out later this year, let’s take a look at why this amazing trailer got everyone so hyped up.

What Makes This Trailer Great: 

  • Dragons: I feel like I don’t really need to explain this one. Dragons have always been a staple of the fantasy genre, but World of Warcraft has taken a unique spin on their lore and abilities. WoW’s dragon aspects are fan favorites, so getting to see them soaring through the skies of their home with such unbelievable animation is a big win for fans. 
  • Stony Tony: Alright, technically his name is Watcher Koranos, but the community has lovingly named him Stony Tony instead. Even though we only get a brief few minutes with this character, it’s so easy to root for him. Despite being made out of stone, the expressions on his face come across so clearly and make him very endearing. I can’t be the only one who cried out in joy when Alexstrasza caught him as he fell from Tyrhold, right? 
  • Return to Azeroth: After spending two years in the weird afterlives of the Shadowlands, many players have been itching for the chance to return to the Azeroth we all know and love. Luckily, this trailer delivers exactly that. Not only do we get to go back to Azeroth, but we get to see the mysterious Dragon Isles, which have been mentioned since as early as Classic, but have never actually been seen in game. For those of us who consider Azeroth a second home, this trailer really delivers the feeling of excitement you get when you know you’re going to have amazing new lands to explore!


5. Cataclysm (2010)

Deathwing soars over Darkshore as it crumbles.

Cataclysm Trailer

While Dragonflight and Cataclysm might both feature dragons, the tone of these cinematics could not be more different. With the release of the Cataclysm trailer over a decade ago, players were greeted with the realization that World of Warcraft as they knew it was going to be changed forever. Let’s see just what makes this trailer so iconic. 

What Makes This Trailer Great:

  • Deathwing: Deathwing is an iconic Warcraft character who makes for an intimidating villain. Seeing his body be held together by searing hot metal plates is cringe-inducing but undeniably awesome! Not enough credit can be given to Deathwing’s voice actor for this jaw-dropping performance in this trailer, and the pure hatred you can hear dripping from his voice really helps sell the video’s story. 
  • The World Breaker: Deathwing certainly lives up to his “World Breaker” title in this cinematic. One of the best parts about this cinematic is being able to recognize all of these iconic Azeroth locations, right before they’re completely destroyed! That ending scene with Deathwing standing on the gates of Stormwind has easily cemented itself as one of the best shots in Warcraft history, and was proof to players that nowhere is safe! 
  • The Music: Generally speaking, the World of Warcraft music department never misses. This trailer is one of the greatest examples of that. From the very beginning of the cinematic, there’s this great thunderous music that doesn’t let you breathe. It fits so well with the theme of power and destruction in the trailer and keeps your heart racing the whole time! 

4. Mists of Pandaria (2012)

A human and an orc stare dumbfounded at a Pandaren

Mists of Pandaria Trailer

At first glance, Mists of Pandaria was given a lot of flack for being “silly” and ruining World of Warcraft’s fantasy with the addition of the Pandaren. However, the expansion more than stood the test of time and is considered one of Warcraft’s golden periods. By taking a quick look at this trailer, it’s easy to see why.

What Makes This Trailer Great:

  • Horde vs Alliance: With faction identity being such a key element to WoW’s gameplay for so long, people love seeing the two sides battle it out. However, it’s pretty common in game for the two sides to team-up against a greater foe. We had never gotten to see this team up happen in a cinematic before Mists of Pandaria, so watching the human hand over the spear is a great representation of this. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also a hilarious moment that adds some great comedy! 
  • Pandaria: Even to this day, Pandaria is unlike anything that’s ever been shown on Azeroth before. The architecture is obviously inspired by East Asian cultures and the hints of it that you get to see throughout the trailer are unbelievably gorgeous and unique. 
  • Chen Stormstout: Chen is a great character, and his monologue in this cinematic is just too good. While it isn’t super long, it perfectly sums up the morals and values of the Pandaren. It also does a great job of introducing players to the kinds of themes that they’ll run into all over Pandaria, which is exactly what trailers are for! 

3. Wrath of the Lich King (2008)

Arthas gets ready to raise his armies of the dead

Wrath of the Lich King Trailer

This trailer needs no introduction. I don’t think I can stress just how much people love Wrath of the Lich King. It’s considered by most of the community to be the best expansion in World of Warcraft history, and based on the trailer it’s easy to see why. 

What Makes This Trailer Great: 

  • Arthas Menethil: Not only is Arthas considered to be the greatest villain in Warcraft’s history, but he’s also one of the best villains ever. Period. This trailer does a great job of showing just how casually powerful he is. While other antagonists like Deathwing and Sylvanas monologue to demonstrate their strength and power, Arthas just raises an undead dragon without breaking a sweat or saying a single word. 
  • Terenas’s Monologue: While Arthas is busy raising a dragon and just generally being the coolest (pun intended), the voice of his father can be heard talking to him. For those who didn’t play Warcraft 3, Arthas ends up killing his father in the Lordaeron throne room. The contrast between Terenas’s kind and reassuring words and Arthas’s malevolent actions in the trailer is chilling. It’s a  great reminder about the horrible things Arthas has done. 
  • The Scourge: Arthas’s army of the undead is easily the most imposing army to ever be seen in a WoW trailer. Their numbers seem to stretch on for miles. Seeing them be rallied by Sindragosa is intimidating, to say the least, and it really sets the scene for what players would have to overcome in Northrend. 

2. World of Warcraft (2004)

A Tauren looks out over Mulgore

World of Warcraft Trailer

The original World of Warcraft trailer has a special place in the hearts of millions. It’s a great example of the things that make WoW feel like WoW. It’s definitely one of the simpler trailers on this list, but that doesn’t make it any less amazing.

What Makes This Trailer Great:

  • The Nameless Characters: From that iconic Dwarf hunter to the graceful Night Elf druid, there are no major lore characters in this trailer. Why is that great, though? Well, every trailer following this focused on lore NPCs, whereas this trailer focuses on nameless adventures that represent player characters. With vanilla WoW having more of a focus on the adventures of the players vs the stories of the NPCs, this trailer does a great job of capturing the feeling of the game. 
  • Azeroth: It can be hard to not stare at those amazing characters, but rewatch the trailer and just look at those insane backgrounds. Every place is a recognizable location on Azeroth that adds to the story of the characters in the scene and sets the tone of the world in-game. 
  • Music: Several of the cinematics we’ve gone over have had amazing music, but none of them are as purely “World of Warcraft”, as the music heard here. It changes throughout the trailer with great transitions and each time it perfectly captures the essence of the race being shown, which helps you get a feel for the denizens of Azeroth! 

1. Battle For Azeroth (2018)

Anduin Wrynn gazes at his father's sword

Battle for Azeroth Trailer


While certainly not the most popular expansion on this list, there’s no denying that this trailer is the best Blizzard has ever put out. From the unreal animation to the pounding music, everything in this trailer has been masterfully crafted! 

What Makes This Trailer Great:

  • Faction Pride: This trailer has gifted us with easily the best “For the Horde” in WoW’s history, which is ironic considering who it’s coming from. Sylvanas’s yell is full of power, and players really resonated with it. If you don’t believe me, go watch the Blizzcon reveal of this trailer and listen to people lose their minds when she yells. Anduin’s mass res and “For The Alliance” is certainly no slouch either, and it just goes to show how much faction pride matters to people. 
  • The Battle for Lordaeron: Unlike other cinematics that feature faction fighting, the fighting in this trailer has real implications. If you didn’t recognize where this fight is taking place, it should be obvious once Genn announces the Alliance is trying to seize the Forsaken capital of Lordaeron. While there was fighting in the MoP and Vanilla trailers, it doesn’t carry any of the weight featured in this trailer because here something is actually on the line that has the power to change a lot in-game. 
  • The People of Azeroth: Given that there are two whole armies in the trailer, it makes sense that you would see a lot of Azeroth’s different races. It’s fantastic to see so many non-human and non-orc races be given high-res models, and it makes the world of Azeroth feel so much more real! 


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From the beautiful continents of Azeroth to the chaotic world of Pandora, Bella has experienced her fair share of wild stories, and has dedicated herself to bringing those stories to the rest of the w
Gamer Since: 2004
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: World of Warcraft
Top 3 Favorite Games:World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor, Mortal Kombat X, Borderlands 2

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