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The gleaming purple-and-emerald forests of Ashenvale are more than just pleasant woodland. To the Warsong orcs who name themselves Outriders, they’re a prize cache of building planks; to the night-elven Silverwing Sentinels, they’re home. Where the turned soil and tree stumps surrounding Horde lumber mills start to encroach on Ashenvale’s timberlands, these two factions clash.
Each group recruits heroes from far and wide – the Horde to batter back the defenders and clear the forests, and the Alliance to shatter the aggressors and stop the disappearance of their precious land. Capturing flags might seem like an unorthodox method of settling this dispute, but it’s symbolic (and hardly without bloodshed). Whoever holds their defeated foes’ banner will show all who look upon the forest that their claim is the strongest – and dictate the future of one of the most important, ancestral lands of the Kaldorei.
Warsong Gulch is the site of a capture-the-flag-style competition between two sides. Each participating team tries to recover the opposing team’s flag (located in an elevated, likely well-defended base) and return with it to their own base, ‘capturing’ it. Throughout the battle, you’ll also need to defeat or avoid the enemy forces that seek to block your path and steal your flag for their own.
The first team to capture the flag three times during the duration of the match is the winner.
A Warsong Gulch match ends one of two ways:
Capture Victory – the first team to capture the opposing team’s flag 3 times is declared the winner.
Timer - If no side has captured 3 flags before the match timer elapses, the game is over. The team with the most successful flag captures will be declared the victor. In the event of a tie, the last team to capture a flag wins.
The Alliance base, Silverwing Hold, and the Horde base, Warsong Lumber Mill, face each other across a no-man’s land. To reach the enemy flag, you’ll need to pass through or around the middle of the map, enter the base through one of a few accessible paths, and claim their flag from a ‘flag room’ located at the base's heart.
Capturing your enemy’s flag is the main objective of Warsong Gulch. The enemy flag is located by default in the ‘flag room’ of your opponents’ base, where it’s likely to be well-defended.
Any flag can be picked up by right-clicking on it; once you’ve picked up the enemy’s flag, you become the flag carrier. If you die while carrying the flag, it is dropped, and can be recovered (via right-click). If a member of the enemy team recovers the flag before your team does, it is returned to their base instantly.
For the duration of the time that you hold the flag, you’ll be subject to a debuff – a temporary increase to the amount of damage you take. The power of this debuff will increase over time, making you easier and easier for the enemy to kill until you unload the flag.
Once you return the flag to your base’s ‘flag room’, you’ll successfully capture it, and a new flag will appear in your opponents’ flag room (for your team to capture).
When you die, you’ll appear at your faction’s graveyard, located near your base. Though you can run to your corpse in order to resurrect, if you remain near the spirit healer in your graveyard, you’ll be returned to life after a short countdown.