What Is 'Warcraft' About? The New Movie Is More Than Your Average Fantasy

From Lara Croft: Tomb Raider to the upcoming Assassin's Creed movie, Hollywood has been churning out action-packed, enticing films based on beloved video games, and it doesn't seem like it's stopping anytime soon. Next up on the game-to-film roster? Warcraft. Warcraft is based on a popular high-fantasy, action packed video game series. But what is Warcraft actually about? As it turns out, there's more to Warcraft than I, for one, had ever imagined.

Released in 1994, the Warcraft series began as games for the computer. Based in the fictional, high-fantasy world of Azeroth, Warcraft allowed users to play in a real-time strategy setting. Eventually, Blizzard Entertainment, the company that created Warcraft, decided to move the games away from real-time strategy into MMORPGs (Massively multiplayer online role-playing games) and they changed the title of the game to World of Warcraft — the name that I, like most, am definitely more familiar with.

In addition to video games, the Warcraft world has been expanded into tabletop games, novels, comics, manga, and card games. Despite the massive popularity of the World of Warcraft division of the video games and the plethora of other source material, it seems Warcraft, the movie, is based exclusively on the original 1994 game Warcraft: Orcs & Humans.

So, what is Warcraft: Orcs & Humans about and what can fans expect in the film? In the game, the humans and orcs battle for a land called Azeroth because ~gasp~ the orcs are actually from a different planet called Draenor that has almost completely been depleted of its resources. The orcs invade Azeroth via a dark portal and pillage the villages and prey on the presumed weak humans. Eventually, however, the humans manage to defeat the orcs and send them back through the portal. It's your classic good vs. evil struggle — one trope that is prominent in most every fantasy story.

However, from the Warcraft movie trailer, it seems like the plot might deviate from the game's original trope of the humans being the good guys and the orcs being the bad guys. In an interview with The New York Times, director Duncan Jones stated that in his gut, he believed the story of Warcraft was "the heroes being on both sides." With this movie, it seems some orcs might team up with the humans to keep the truly bad orcs out of Azeroth.

While there's no saying whether or not more Warcraft films are on the horizon, there definitely is no shortage of source material to adapt.

Images: Universal Studios