The Trolloc FAQ: Asked and Answered

Roaring Trolloc with orange background
August 20, 2022
Categories:Stuff and Things

You’ve probably heard of Wheel of Time if you’re a reader of fantasy fiction. Since its inception, the story has been a fan favorite. The fantasy show has a broad plot that spans both the past and the future. It’s been described as a modern fantasy masterpiece. Not many would argue that. One of the things that help make it a masterpiece is its huge, nasty, powerful foes. Yeah, we’re talking about the savage Trolloc. (Well, also the Myrdraal, Forsaken, and other Shadowspawn – but this article is specifically about those magnificently nasty beast-men.)

If you’re looking to learn more about Trollocs, you’re studying the right grimoire.

Trollocs (TRAHL-lohks): Creatures of the Dark One, created during the War of the Shadow. Massive in stature and vicious in the extreme, they are a twisted blend of animal and human and kill for the pure pleasure of killing. Sly, deceitful, treacherous; they can be trusted only by those they fear. They are omnivorous and eat any meat, including human flesh and the flesh of other Trollocs. Primarily of human origin, they can interbreed with humankind, but the offspring are usually stillborn. However, even those who are not stillborn often fail to survive. They are divided into tribe-like bands, predominantly the Ahf’frait, Al’ghol, Bhan’sheen, Dha’vol, Dhai’mon, Dhjin’nen, Ghar’ghael, Ghob’hlin, Gho’hlem, Ghraem’lan, Ko’bal, and the Kno’mon.

↑ Excerpt, Robert Jordan. The Eye of the World: Book One of The Wheel of Time (p. 736). ↑

Two Trollocs hiding behind pillar preparing to ambush

Trollocs prepare an Ambush: cover of The Fires of Heaven.


Beast-Men of the Twelve Tribes

Trollocs are the Dark One’s army’s main strength, and we’re sure to see many of them as the show progresses. If you’ve already finished the series, you know there are LOTS more coming.

In this article, we’ll look into these brutal and ruthless creatures and learn much of what there is know about them.

Total FAQ

So, first of all, what are they?

It is a sort of Shadowspawn which developed during the Age of Legends and makes up the majority of the Dark One’s army. Essentially, they are the Dark One’s henchmen, the show’s primary nemesis. They make up a terrifying mix of human and animal ancestry with physical traits from both. The Trollocs appear in the first episode of Amazon’s “The Wheel of Time,” interrupting the Bel Tine celebration to begin massacring the townspeople.

How big are they?

If we talk about their height, They stand between 8 and 10 feet tall. Trollocs vary in size based on their qualities; for example, they can be wolf bears. They are tall, much taller than Rand (one of the tallest non-Aeil beings around).

wheel of time creature sketch

Trolloc sketch by Dan Goulter

What do they look like?

A Trolloc has a nose, beak, or head that resembles that of an animal and feathers or huge rough hands with strong claws. Single Trollocs differ in height and hair color, much as humans differ in height, eye color, facial features, etc. No two Trollocs are the same, just as no two people are alike; some may swap their fur for feathers or animal teeth for beaks. They resemble giant, hairy humanoids with animalistic traits like hoofed feet and massive horns on their heads. According to the book, they may have long noses or beaks and walk on either feet or goat hooves. The Amazon series’ Trolloc looks to have a massive torso and a fierce ram’s head in the teaser. Because they are a hybrid of people and animals such as bears and bulls, they are exceedingly powerful.

Trolloc with blue background

How were they created?

During the War of the Shadow, the Dark One’s soldiers tried to develop a super-soldier that would be stronger than normal humans. Trollocs are a Shadowspawn species that appeared during the Age of Legends. These monsters, which are a hybrid between humans and animal origin – comparable to Orcs – are said to have made up a substantial component of the Dark One’s army. Trolocs were strengthened and given specific weapons to fight. Trolloc weapons are created at Thakan’dar’s foundries in Shayol Ghul. Some of them have that place’s stink, a nasty stain on the metal. They are extremely powerful and resilient, and if non-vital regions are attacked, it can take many arrows or blade strikes to kill one. A “fist” of Trollocs is a gathering of at least one hundred but not more than 200 Trollocs. Surprisingly, the Trollocs evolved into social beings, banding together in numerous separate tribes, a trait that harkens back to their human origins. The procedure also produced the Myrddraal, an intellectual Trolloc with a more human look than the others and acts as a war ruler over units of Trollocs. In the invasion of Bel Tine, a Myrddraal is seen leading the Trollocs against the townspeople.

Trolloc band Emblems

Emblems of Trolloc Bands by Chris Moorhead

A more detailed description:

The Trollocs’ non-human genetic traits can give them additional distinctive talents, such as being more clever and more likely to understand foreign languages. At the same time, those that resemble bears are significantly tougher, able to sprint as quickly as a horse, which, when paired with their mass, should be enough to strike a man down, even if he gets fortunate and whacks it with a sword. According to their descriptions, they should be capable of crippling a human body with a single defenseless physical attack. They’re also equipped and protected. Yes, they are primitive, but their arm-reach is far greater than a human’s. Their power is incredible, and their stamina supposedly permits their armor to compensate for its lack of quality of creation.


Roaring Trolloc with orange background

Trolloc from wheel of time

How long ago were the wars?

The Trolloc Wars
Around 1000 AB, news of increased Trolloc attacks via the Mountains of Dhoom arrived from the far north. The besiegement and destruction of the Ogier-built city of Barsine in Jaramide by a large army of Shadowspawn was the first clue that what was going on was more than just raiding and firefights.

Between the Spine of the World and the Mountains of Dhoom, vast Trolloc armies burst from the Great Blight, attacking through the tiny mountain passes and the bigger Tarwin’s Gap passage. Despite fierce battling, Mafal Dadaranell’s capital city was attacked and destroyed, with the Shadowspawn burning it to the ground and leaving no record of their presence.

In 1000 AB, a massive influx of Trollocs arrived from the Blight, destroying the Pact in a series of warfare known as the Trolloc Wars. These battles lasted over 350 years and wreaked havoc throughout most of the continent. In the Trolloc Wars, humanity had triumphed, crushing Shadowspawn armies and pushing their broken vestiges back into the Great Blight. However, the conflict’s confusion and destruction were too much for what remained of the Ten Nations.

Wheel of time Emonds Field

Trollocs at Emonds Field

In short, The Dark One’s troops sought a way to produce soldiers more powerful than ordinary people. Our magnificent Trollocs were introduced in this straightforward and clear manner. They are unique in that they comprise most of the evil army in this epic series.

We could go on further but are wary of spoilers.

Check back soon for more.

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