Nethergarde Keep[65, 19], a Dalaran fortress of dour mages and paladins, keeps watch over the Dark Portal, and the demons and ogres that would abuse its power. ( The keep is a heavily defended Alliance town located in the )Blasted Lands, home to a detachment of 300. Though technically it is a castle like Northwatch Hold in the Barrens, none of the Guards are PvP-enabled except the Gryphon Master and a few questgivers. The castle features two barracks, a stable, a mage tower and a blacksmith.
Nethergarde Keep was built after the Second War — following the destruction of the first Dark Portal — at the behest of Archmage Khadgar to ensure that there would be no further invasions from Draenor. It stands on a high bluff along the only road into the Blasted Lands, a road often travelled by both the Horde and the Alliance as they prepare to do battle with the demonic forces in the region.
The construction of Nethergarde was funded by the various kingdoms of the Alliance of Lordaeron (though some more willingly than others), and constructed by the Stonemasons under the supervison of Edwin VanCleef. The archmages of the Kirin Tor, along with the help of King Terenas, Thoras Trollbane and the young king of Stormwind Varian Wrynn, convinced the members of the Alliance that the high costs involved with constructing the fortress was well worth it considering the dangers involved with a possible "second invasion".
Khadgar was master of Nethergarde until the reconstruction of the Dark Portal by Ner'zhul, and his clans, on Draenor. When the orcs began attacking Azeroth once more, Khadgar and his friends Turalyon, Danath Trollbane, Alleria Windrunner, and Kurdran Wildhammer rallied their troops and led the Alliance Expedition through the Dark Portal in order to destroy the Horde and seal off the Portal once and for all. When Ner'zhul opened more portals, which began to tear Draenor apart, the five leaders remained behind to seal it from Draenor in order that the backlash would not affect their beloved world of Azeroth.
For twenty years thereafter, the Dark Portal was silent.
After the Portal was sealed, the mages of Dalaran kept Nethergarde in operation both for the Kirin Tor and the Alliance. They focused their efforts on studying the effects that the Portal's energy had on what had become known as the Blasted Lands - the mutations to the wildlife and the tainting of the soil. When Dalaran was destroyed by Archimonde during the invasion of the Burning Legion, Nethergarde's continued survival depended on support from the nearby Kingdom of Stormwind, and by warriors of the Alliance who travelled into the Blasted Lands. Then Lord Kazzak, the demon commander in Azeroth, found an artifact to reopen the Dark Portal, and join the Legion's ranks in Outland. Now, with the way to Outland open again, Nethergarde is now the major hub of activity between Stormwind and the Dark Portal.
Wrath of the Lich KingEditThis section concerns content exclusive to Wrath of the Lich King.
In the years following the War against the Lich King, the southern wall of the keep was opened.
CataclysmEditThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
Following the terrible shattering, which destroyed the eastern mountain range in the Blasted Lands, this allowed direct access to the Shattershore. To the west, the Horde has retaken the fortress of Dreadmaul Hold, putting the Alliance forces of Nethergarde Keep into direct conflict over territory and resources.
The horde is now actively battling alliance outside the western entrance.
Warlords of DraenorEditThis section concerns content exclusive to Warlords of Draenor.
During the War against the Iron Horde, Nethergarde Keep was destroyed when the Iron Horde began its attempted invasion on Azeroth through the Dark Portal. The Alliance inside the keep was not prepared for this,
and couldn't stand against the Iron Horde's advanced weaponry. After the Iron Horde destroyed Nethergarde Keep, the Horde from Dreadmaul Hold took the opportunity and attacked the enemy head on. They managed to defeat the enemy, but after reinforcements arrived, Dreadmaul Hold was conquered and taken by the Iron Horde.
- Stormwind City, Elwynn Forest
- Darkshire, Duskwood
- Morgan's Vigil, Burning Steppes
- Surwich, Blasted Lands
- Marshtide Watch, Swamp of Sorrows
- In Lands of Conflict, this place is a single building, a medium-sized keep, full of uptight perfectionists found in the very north part of the Blasted Lands guarding the sole road in and out. However in World of Warcraft, this place is a large fortress in the northeastern part of Blast Lands far from the road.