1. Muradin Bronzebeard: Middle Child, Turned Sidekick, Turned King

It's hard out there for a middle child. They made a whole TV show about it and everything! Though Frankie Muniz probably didn't have as tough a time of it as Muradin Bronzebeard. And yes, that's including his recent appearance in Sharknado 3.

The second son of a proud family, Muradin didn't start off with a whole lot to do. His older brother, Magni, was destined to be King Under the Mountain. Since he turned out to be a rather good one, to boot, Muradin had to find something else to occupy his time.

So Muradin decided to pour his time and effort into other, seemingly more important people. To that end he became a founding member of the Explorer's Guild -- literally digging into the history and icons of his dwarf-y civilization. Which on top of everything makes him about as close a thing to a nerd that dwarfs can get in the world of Warcraft. Unfortunately, not everyone he kept an eye on was already dead.

Muradin made the long-running mistake of becoming sidekick to one, young Arthas Menethil. As part of the princeling's support cast Muradin taught him how to swing a sword. Little did he know that the last person on Azeroth who should be taught about swords was the future wielder of Frostmourne. A.K.A. The Lich King.

Those that played Warcraft 3 (one of those games from before World of Warcraft) know that Arthas iced Muradin when he recovered Frostmourne. Literally.

A great, big shard of ice stabbed the dwarf seemingly to death when Arthas went full Bad Guy. Such was the end of the erstwhile archaeologist. Except it totally wasn't! Muradin wasn't dead -- just impaled, bleeding, freezing to death, stranded alone in the middle of nowhere, and stuck with a case of convenient amnesia.

Which is to say he was perfectly fine. So fine, in fact, that he was able to slay a great, big monster worm (a Jormungar). That impressed the nearby dwarfs that found his chilly self. Enough that they were willing to look past having no clue who he was, and make him their damn king. And that was only a precursor to him succeeding Magni as one of the three, true rulers of all dwarf-kind. All of which goes to show that if you really want to succeed in life you just need to get horribly, impossibly injured first.

2. Orgrim Doomhammer (They Named That One City After Him)


Orgrim has a lot of shit named after him. That's a pretty good indicator that, in general, you've done well for yourself in life. Especially when one of the things bearing your name is the iconic seat of the Horde: Orgrimmar.

Yep. If you never knew where that name came from, it's this guy. Which makes sense given that he was basically the Orc Warchief of note prior to Warcraft 3. He had the intestinal fortitude -- not to mention brains -- necessary to reject Gul'Dan (the nastiest of the Orc baddies). All while leading his people against humanity during the second Orc-on-Human war.

He wasn't always in such a position of power, though. Orgrim started out as a more-or-less unassuming child. One that went against tradition by befriending a kid from a different clan. Rather than get into trouble over the break with Orcish values Orgrim and the child in question -- Durotan -- remained fast friends until the latter's death.

From humble beginnings Orgrim rose through the ranks of his clan until he stood side-by-side with his own Warchief. Unfortunately, the Warchief in question wasn't nearly so clever as his soon-to-be-successor. Blackhand, as the big green dummy was called, fell perfectly into the palm of Gul'Dan's slimy hand.

It wasn't long before Orgrim got sick of this display, and took leadership of the Horde by force. Which he accomplished by cutting off the puppet chief's empty head. A great time was had by all, until Orgrim proved too successful at killing people he didn't like. During Warcraft 2 the chieftain let some blood out of the current human regent as well. Which whipped the realms of humanity into a frenzy strong enough to beat the Orcs back.

In the resultant chaos a whole lot of green sadsacks were captured and enslaved. Not the least of which was Orgrim himself, who became an "oddity" in the ownership of human lords. It didn't take much of that to convince him to high-tail it. Which is when he ran into the son of his long-dead friend Durotan -- Thrall -- and passed one helluva torch to the future leader, thereby cementing naming conventions in Horde society for years to come.