The Unofficial High Elf Discussion Megathread

General Discussion
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10/07/2018 05:16 PMPosted by Nindraine
10/07/2018 03:43 PMPosted by Joyeuse
Ennas was obviously the writing team's way of acknowledging that Blood Elves going Horde made no sense and that we're expected to go along with what the corporate overlords say. It's really a great little scene, tbh.


I remember seeing the devs talk about this back before TBC, and it was really interesting. Silvermoon City was intentionally designed to be slightly dystopian back in TBC. It's why there's a protester being detained near the gates. Its's why the Dead Scar exists. It's why the arcane constructs spout lines from RoboCop, why everything is a bit uncannily tall and looming, and why that scene of being mind controlled into submission existed. They wanted it to feel like there was something else going on, lurking beneath the surface - that despite the glory of the rebuilt Silvermoon City, that the Blood Elves were slightly overcompensating, and that not everything was right.

These aren't the magical, timeless High Elves at the height of their power. Blood Elves were meant to portray a shattered innocence, a slightly chipped facade showing undertones of desperation and lost glory. As a new Blood Elf, you quest through the ruins of Silvermoon City first, facing Wretched and seeing the worst of what magical addiction can do to the Elves, before you see Silvermoon City itself, and that's entirely intentional, because the devs wanted to cement in your head that this was a civilisation that was doing everything it could to pretend it had recaptured the glory of its peak, but was still very heavily scarred from the events of Warcraft 3. It's actually still one of my favourite regions - not because it's pretty, but because the devs were so clever about being subtly ensuring that you were constantly reminded that not all is well in Quel'Thalas.

I don't agree with your premise, but it's important to point out that the devs were trying really hard to show us that the Blood Elves had fallen off their lofty perch. I think that's thematically important and relevant to the discussion about Blood Elf/High Elf cultural changes in the wake of the Scourge invasion.


Actually, expanding on my own point here, but there's often talk about which side is the true inheritor of Quel'Thalas, or which side is more deserving, or even the discussion about culture and the lack thereof in regards to High Elves. There's often an assumption made that Blood Elves are just High Elves in the sense that Blood Elves are the same as High Elves were before the invasion of Quel'Thalas, and that therefore High Elves don't need to be their own thing because....well, High Elves are Blood Elves.

But here's the thing. Blood Elf culture shifted significantly following the invasion of Quel'Thalas, and the design theory behind Silvermoon City that I outlined above is a great example of that. Now, I want to preface this by saying in no way do I think this illegitimizes their claim to Quel'Thalas or any such alarmist nonsense, simply that the Blood Elves' identity, narratives and themes changed following the Scourge invasion. But the declaration of becoming Blood Elves brought with it a dramatic cultural shift.

And we're not just talking about loosening the rules on Fel magic, or the mana tapping stuff, though that's certainly a part of it. We're talking about mind controlling civilians for the sake of keeping public order, or detaining and imprisoning people who spoke out against the leadership. We're talking about arcane constructs patrolling the streets shouting propaganda. We're talking about frost magic falling out of favour and fire magic taking its place, of reds and golds and greens and blacks becoming the new fashion, and so on.

Blood Elves experienced a cultural shift that was initially about honoring their fallen, but soon shifted towards reaching a new, unparalleled level of glory - not only recapturing their past power, but exceeding it. And that excess is obvious, and kind of also seeps into everything that they do. That habit of overcompensating and doing things bigger and more brashly than is needed is still strong in current Blood Elf thematics - everything is a little overdone. Which, again going back to my previous post, is kind of the point.

On the other side of the argument, a lot of people also like to suggest that modern, post-Scourge High Elves are truer to the original High Elf 'culture' - but again, this is incorrect. Now let me be clear here, just because High Elves aren't a unified, doesn't mean they're somehow bereft of culture - that's not really how culture works, you can be a refugee and still bring your experiences, customs and lifestyle with you.

However, High Elves also had to deal with the loss of their home, adjusting to life in Alliance cities where they weren't entirely trusted or were a vast minority - or they would be involved in places like the ranger lodges, though most appear to have wound up in Dalaran. Still, the loss of the Sunwell had its effects, and for a decade the High Elfves had to essentially deal with their magical addiction on their own, without the ability to leverage the strength of their peers or tap into converging ley lines to sate themselves. So the general 'quality of life' of a High Elf was considerably poorer for the most part, and access to magic was significantly lower - to a point where some groups stopped practising it entirely. So it's not like High Elves got to maintain the status quo either.

And that's the thing. Post-Scourge, neither High nor Blood Elves are really the same that they were before the invasion. It irrevocably changed both groups, so neither of them a really the 'true High Elves' of Warcraft 2 anymore. Both of their narratives have moved away from that in very different directions.

So when there's mention of which side of the argument is the 'true' inheritor of Quel'Thalas, or whether one side has greater claim to that cultural identity than the other, be it via the right of succession, or via cultural similarity, or whatever reasoning, both have their merits in different aspects, but both have been irrevocably changed by their post-Scourge invasion experiences as well.

Modern High Elf culture isn't an off-shoot of Blood Elf culture. Both essentially were created at the same time - the moment Kael'Thas Sunstrider declared his people as Blood Elves. In the same way, Blood Elf culture isn't derivative of modern High Elf culture. Both were created by the same event that caused a social and cultural schism that set the two groups on different paths. Elf culture basically split in two at the same moment. Of course, Blood Elves have the majority of the population and the real estate, but that doesn't make the modern High Elf cultural identity any less legitimate as its own entity, it's just a comparatively smaller group.
10/07/2018 12:59 PMPosted by Fliktarg
All of this leaves the alliance with a potential for tens of thousands of high elves within its' populace seeing as we have no official numbers other than generic terms used to describe the group sizes.


https://wow.gamepedia.com/High_elf

Modern high elves are a rare sight, and are commonly mistaken for blood elves.[11][12] In consequence, there are so few high elves left on Azeroth today that they cannot be considered a race in anything other than the biological sense. High elves did not gather in any significant numbers, nor did they act as a coordinated whole. They are a very small group of individuals scattered all over the world. As such, they do not have common opinions or goals. Indeed, modern high elves cannot even truly be said to have a culture—only a past filled with glory and regret.[2]


As a people, the high elves are all but extinct: the remnants of the remnants of a fallen race


This is actually an instance where Blizzard is being mindful of their Lore. Nearly all High Elves are Blood Elves because they willingly changed their name. Those that didn't are several small scattered groups that don't constitute a distinct culture and are in the process of dying out because they are intolerant bigots who will have nothing to do with their kindred of the Horde.


That lore is outdated. Most of what I am saying comes from chronicles volume 3. You need to update your lore.
I think the best course towards adding Alliance loyal High Elves into the game should incorporate the following points to help shape their identity.

  • Playable Alliance High Elves should originate from Dalaran
  • Their model should be altered to reflect their blood line being mixed between Human and Elven Heritage
  • Their conflict with Blood Elves could be themed around loyalty by blood vs loyalty to those considered kin
  • The concept of legacy should be a prevalent theme as they as they come to terms of who they are within the Alliance while reflecting upon a past in which they remained loyal in light of the schism that split them from their former kin while affirming who they are going forward into the future
  • 10/07/2018 04:24 PMPosted by Illiaster
    10/07/2018 04:02 PMPosted by Dànnar
    Good thing they aren't asking for blood elves.

    No my point is Joyeuse keeps going on this rampage about how blood elves shouldnt have ever existed on Horde. Like her posts on Story Forums:

    09/17/2018 11:25 PMPosted by Joyeuse
    ...Wrong. They still fit better as part of the Alliance to this day.

    Blizzard sacrificed their story and theme BIG TIME when they gave Blood Elves to the Horde to solve the population imbalance.


    The post still is not over their addition to the Horde. But sure, just whitewash it.

    This isnt whether or not they are asking about High elves, she clearly has some hatred for them (Blood elves) and they are "lore-breaking" in her view.


    Ah, my apologies. Without the quote, I lose the context of what you're responding to. Sorry for that.
    10/07/2018 06:14 PMPosted by Nindraine

    Modern High Elf culture isn't an off-shoot of Blood Elf culture. Both essentially were created at the same time - the moment Kael'Thas Sunstrider declared his people as Blood Elves. In the same way, Blood Elf culture isn't derivative of modern High Elf culture. Both were created by the same event that caused a social and cultural schism that set the two groups on different paths. Elf culture basically split in two at the same moment. Of course, Blood Elves have the majority of the population and the real estate, but that doesn't make the modern High Elf cultural identity any less legitimate as its own entity, it's just a comparatively smaller group.


    Great post! Very thorough and accurate!
    10/07/2018 06:33 PMPosted by Evandeyr
    I think the best course towards adding Alliance loyal High Elves into the game should incorporate the following points to help shape their identity.

  • Playable Alliance High Elves should originate from Dalaran
  • Their model should be altered to reflect their blood line being mixed between Human and Elven Heritage
  • Their conflict with Blood Elves could be themed around loyalty by blood vs loyalty to those considered kin
  • The concept of legacy should be a prevalent theme as they as they come to terms of who they are within the Alliance while reflecting upon a past in which they remained loyal in light of the schism that split them from their former kin while affirming who they are going forward into the future


  • I agree with most of your points but the general opinion of the pro community is that high elves should be a newly formed coalition of the various groups within the alliance. Those of dalaran would be the highest population of them but the ranger themes and such are not really found in dalaran high elves.

    Though I do agree massively about the ideas of loyalty. High elves should represent an opinion of staying loyal to friends and family while blood elves should embody that idea of being loyal to the nation and people.

    A personal idea of mine is to turn the high elves vs blood elves conflict into a royalists vs nationalist thing.

    Kael'thas decreed that there would never be another king of quel'thalas and lor'themar still enforces that ideal.

    Meanwhile vereesa and alleria are both windrunners which is a noble house and one in high standing as well. They very well could be considered to have the right to the throne of quel'thalas.


    Actually, expanding on my own point.......


    My god man, that was incredibly well written. Fantastic points of view and very fascinating ideas for potential future conflicts.

    [b][/b]

    10/07/2018 07:04 PMPosted by Fliktarg


    Meanwhile vereesa and alleria are both windrunners which is a noble house and one in high standing as well. They very well could be considered to have the right to the throne of quel'thalas.


    That's really neat. I love the idea of an Alliance backed attack to reclaim the home of the loyalist high elves in the name of the living Windrunner sisters.

    Or at the very least Veressa because I've got this feeling in my gut that Arator has a red colored shirt under his pally armor and he's going to make us have to kill Alleria.

    This is just my own speculation for how Blizz will handle it though. Arator will die, Alleria loses her !@#$ and gives into the whispers, we have to take her down, Varessa then ends up adopting the remaining void elf forces now that they've learned how to harness their own personal whispers and join with her high elf forces under a new banner.
    10/07/2018 07:04 PMPosted by Fliktarg
    A personal idea of mine is to turn the high elves vs blood elves conflict into a royalists vs nationalist thing.

    Kael'thas decreed that there would never be another king of quel'thalas and lor'themar still enforces that ideal.

    Meanwhile vereesa and alleria are both windrunners which is a noble house and one in high standing as well. They very well could be considered to have the right to the throne of quel'thalas.


    I had the same idea! I mean can you imagine if the High Elves crowned a new king or queen? The blood Elves would be foaming at the mouth. It'd be epic.
    Do you coordinate with your cronies to have at least one of these annoying threads up on the front page at all times?
    No OP
    10/07/2018 08:42 PMPosted by Senseilimb
    Do you coordinate with your cronies to have at least one of these annoying threads up on the front page at all times?


    they do
    Ugh, how are people so stubborn about a dead issue? I wouldn't be surpised if they still have their hopes up 5 years from now when nothing changes lol.

    I guess GD is all about providing false hope.
    Here come the trolls that provide no actual input or discussion....
    10/07/2018 09:03 PMPosted by Drede
    Here come the trolls that provide no actual input or discussion....


    How sweet of you, coming from a supporter of crazed, disturbing, and desperate false hope of a dead issue, that's been beaten to death so bad, the horse is a mere pulp by now.
    Let's just replace all races with different colored elves
    10/07/2018 09:03 PMPosted by Drede
    Here come the trolls that provide no actual input or discussion....


    there isnt any discussion
    10/07/2018 09:03 PMPosted by Drede
    Here come the trolls that provide no actual input or discussion....


    They are simply trying to derail the thread. Ignore their bait and continue discussing ideas with substance. They only feed off of drama anyways.
    10/07/2018 09:31 PMPosted by Gulrum
    10/07/2018 09:03 PMPosted by Drede
    Here come the trolls that provide no actual input or discussion....


    They are simply trying to derail the thread. Ignore their bait and continue discussing ideas with substance. They only feed off of drama anyways.


    Agreed. It's really not worth it.
    Aye. ignore them. This thread has been going strong and shall continue to do so.
    https://bnetcmsus-a.akamaihd.net/cms/blog_header/UZ1P07KF9IXY1522452399255.jpg

    Let all races become elves.

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