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My Warcraft knowledge is a bit rusty, so forgive any misconceptions I may have about the current story and timeline.

In the new Legion cinematic trailer, we see (alternate) Gul'dan interacting with a large green crystal at the Vault of the Wardens that contains Illidan Stormrage (see: events after his "death"). To my knowledge, Gul'dan has no idea who Illidan is due to the fact that, in the prime timeline, he was dead long before Illidan was set free and in the alternate timeline, Illidan is presumed to have never made it to Outland (and orcs had never made it to Azeroth).

My question is how did Gul'dan find Illidan? Was it by chance, or did he specifically set out to look for him? And if he did set out to look for him, how did he know he was in the Lost Isles?

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  • Gul'dan works for the burning legion, Illidan also works/has worked for the burning legion. This would be how Gul'dan would A. know about Illidan, B. know where to find him.
    – Himarm
    Commented Aug 12, 2015 at 21:29
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    Are the burning legion immune to the alternate timeline? Commented Aug 12, 2015 at 21:30
  • its my understanding that Gul'dan was sent into normal timeline at the end of Warlords of draenor(or somewhere in that game) at this point we can assume he comes into contact with the burning legion of the original universe as he has lost all ties to his universe thats the problem with alternate timelines, it messes everything up.
    – Himarm
    Commented Aug 12, 2015 at 21:33
  • I guess that implies the burning legion knew where illidan was taken. Im not really disputing it, just kinda curious how the BL knows what it knows Commented Aug 12, 2015 at 21:43
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    they have people infiltrated in to almost every major organization, one night elf corrupted woulda leaked.
    – Himarm
    Commented Aug 12, 2015 at 22:00

2 Answers 2

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Warning: Spoilers for the end of WoD Legendary questline and Hellfire Citadel.

Cordana Felsong tells Gul'dan where to find Illidan's corpse, after betraying Khadgar (and the player). After coming under demonic influence, presumably she is sent back to aid (or controlled and summoned by) Gul'dan when he is thrown into Azeroth by Archimonde.

As detailed here:

Due to the Orb of Dominion's influence, Gul'dan was able to corrupt Cordana from afar. When the commander brought her a number of Tomes of Chaos from Hellfire Citadel to destroy, she instead attempted to use the fel magic within them to take the ring Khadgar had given the commander. The commander was forced to fight her until she retreated through a demonic portal, vowing that the Burning Legion would soon come to destroy Azeroth. Khadgar was visibly stricken with grief at her betrayal.

This chain of events explains a lot, including Gul'dan's knowledge of Illidan (he and his previous exploits were sort of a big deal amongst the Elves and would be known) and the location of the Tomb of Sargeras, although it does not explain how the information about the supposed secret location leaked out from Maiev Shadowsong. Possibly this will be answered in-game in Legion, or in a short story.

EDIT with new information (as of August 1st 2016):

Listen to this Audiobook, it explains a lot more about Alternate Gul'dan's trip to the Broken Isles The Tomb of Sargeras

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  • To sum up the information in the audiobook - after arriving on Azeroth, alt-Gul'dan ended up in contact with Kil'jaeden, and KJ literally rode shotgun in GDs head to direct him exactly where he needed to be to open the Tomb's portal. Very likely KJ had the idea to steal Illidan too, even if Cordana Felsong provided the ways and means.
    – Radhil
    Commented Aug 15, 2016 at 19:14
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I am going to assume that rumors travel fast, I mean he knew about khadgar and shit from original azeroth when he knew nothing about him to start with

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