Lore for locked Class/Race combos

General Discussion
EDIT: Thought up a better title.
Lately there have been several discussions about opening up all available classes to all available races. Frequently, the only counterpoint raised in those discussions is the game lore.

To that end, I've prepared the following regarding which non-hero classes are locked to each race and how those classes might be explained within the confines of the existing lore (or with as little deviation as possible).

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Standard Races
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Human
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Druid
  • Shaman:
    • Tidesages (Counter Culture)
    • Power of my Enemy (Anti-orc counter-culture)
    • Totems: Harvest Wicker dolls
  • Druid:
    • Drust druidism (Kul Tiran Culture)
    • Harvest druidism (Gilnean Culture)
    • Kal'dorei disciple (Night Elven Connections)
    • Forms: As Night Elf; emphasis lion manes.


Dwarf
Locked Base Classes: Druid
  • Druid:
    • Wildhammer
    • Forms: Earthen lion, earthen bear (similar to artifact appearances)


Night Elf
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Paladin, Warlock
  • Warlock:
    • Defiance of tradition (Counter Culture) [Risk of satyrism]
  • Paladin:
    • War Priests of Elune (Cultural drift)
    • Night Warriors
    • Mount: Moonbound Nightsaber
  • Shaman:
    • Adopted Culture (Draenei)
    • Totems: Statues of Elune


Gnome
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Druid, Paladin
  • Shaman:
    • Scientific Curiosity (Bind elementals with technology)
    • Totems: Gearspring gadgets
  • Druid:
    • Tinker
    • Forms: Mechs
  • Paladin:
    • Defiance of tradition (Counter Culture)
    • Mount: Sacred Goat


Draenei
Locked Base Classes: Rogue, Druid, Warlock
  • Rogue:
    • Rangari [Don't start with the hooves, stealth is shadow magic]
  • Druid:
    • Kal'dorei disciple (Night Elven Connections)
    • Forms: Marsuul [Cat], Elekk [Bear], Arcane Construct [Moonkin]
  • Warlock:
    • Defiance of tradition (Counter Culture) [Risk of Man'ari coloration]


Worgen
Locked Base Classes: Monk, Shaman, Paladin
  • Monk:
    • Gilnean fight club boxer
    • Search for Balance
    • Learned from Pandaren (new Tushui NPC shipwrecked in Gilneas bay)
  • Shaman:
    • Search for Balance
    • Professional Illusionist
    • Totems: Derby Hats
  • Paladin:
    • Sister Culture (Stormwindian)
    • Search for Balance
    • Mount: Running Wild, Twoform Clydesdale


Orc
Locked Base Classes: Priest, Druid, Paladin
  • Priest:
    • Power of my Enemy (Anti-human counter-culture)
    • Shadowmoon Devotee
    • Priest of Goldrinn
    • Field Medic (like Gnomes)
  • Paladin:
    • Warpriest of Goldrinn
    • Power of my Enemy (Anti-human counter-culture)
    • Search to end Fel Corruption
    • Mount: Dire Wolf
  • Druid:
    • Shu'halo disciple (Tauren Connections)
    • Blessed of Goldrinn (Wild God connections)
    • Forms: Frostwolf (Cat), Battleboar (Bear), Tusked Owlbear (Moonkin)


Forsaken
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Druid, Paladin
  • Shaman:
    • Dark Shamanism (Elemental Control by coersive force)
    • Totems: Gravestones
  • Druid:
    • Mushroom on the Log (Drust Druidism)
    • Forms: As Tauren, but plagued with exposed sores
  • Paladin:
    • Mad Devotion (pain causes insanity, race-specific debuff "Agony" increases damage, healing, costs, and wounds by 1% per stack, max 10 stacks, resets with Cannibalize)
    • Mount: Skeletal Warhorse


Tauren
Locked Base Classes: Rogue, Mage, Warlock
  • Rogue:
    • Defiance of Tradition (Grimtotem, Counter Culture) [Don't start with the hooves, stealth is shadow magic]
  • Mage:
    • Defiance of Tradition (Counter Culture, Dalaran training)
  • Warlock:
    • Defiance of Tradition (Grimtotem, Counter Culture)


Darkspear Troll
Locked Base Classes: Paladin
  • Paladin:
    • Freethinker (Loa devotee)
    • Mount: Holy Raptor


Blood Elf
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Druid
  • Shaman:
    • Shu'halo Disciple (Tauren Connections)
    • Totems: Hovering crystals
  • Druid:
    • Defiance of Tradition (Counter Culture, Botanist)
    • Shu'halo Disciple (Tauren Connections)
    • Forms: As Tauren, no horns. Emphasis on enormous eyebrows. Lynx (Cat).


Goblin
Locked Base Classes: Monk, Druid, Paladin
  • Monk:
    • Prizefighter
    • Learned from Pandaren (new Houjin NPC visiting Kezan)
  • Druid:
    • Tinker
    • Forms: Mechs
  • Paladin:
    • Paladin for Profit
    • The power of Gold (Glistens with the Light)
    • Mount: Gilded Trike


Pandaren
Locked Base Classes: Druid, Paladin, Warlock
  • Druid:
    • Mistweaver (let into the Emerald Dream by Yu'lon)
    • Forms: August Tiger (Cat), August Oxen (Bear), August Crane (Moonkin), Sky Serpent (Travel)
  • Paladin:
    • Brewmaster (Way of the light... brew)
    • Mount: Rolling Brewkeg
  • Warlock:
    • Brewmaster (Drunken nightmares summon demons)
    • Summons: Pink Elekk (imp), Alemental (voidwalker), Scrumptuous [Cake] (succubus), Indigestion [Terrible Turnip] (infernal), Keglord (dreadlord), Brewguard [hozen] (felguard), Brewhunter [keg pony] (felhunter)


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Allied Races
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Dark Iron Dwarf
Locked Base Classes: Druid
  • Druid:
    • Druid of the Flame (Firelands connection)
    • Forms: As Night Elf, but flame emphasis


Lightforged Draenei
Locked Base Classes: Monk, Rogue, Druid, Warlock
  • Monk:
    • Learned before Lightforging
    • Learned from Pandaren
    • Learned from Draenei Monks
  • Rogue:
    • Rangari before Lightforging
  • Druid:
    • Kal'dorei disciple before Lightforging (Night Elven Connections)
    • Forms: Lightforged Marsuul (Cat), Lightforged Elekk (Bear), Lightforged Warframe (Moonkin)
  • Warlock:
    • Enslavement of Demons (The one path is the Light)
    • Summons: Lightforged variants of standard Warlock summons


Void Elf
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Druid, Paladin
  • Shaman:
    • Dark Shamanism (Elemental Control by coercive force)
    • Totems: Mini Ethereal elementals
  • Druid:
    • Unstable Anatomy (from partial etherealization)
    • Defiance of Tradition before transformation (Counter Culture)
    • Forms: As Blood Elf, but nebulous
  • Paladin:
    • Netherlight Champion (Void infusion)
    • Mount: Ethereal Voidstrider (bandages around whorling energy)


Kul Tiran Human
Locked Base Classes: Paladin, Warlock
  • Paladin:
    • Tidesworn Warpriest
    • Mount: Tidesblessed Shark
  • Warlock:
    • Defiance of Tradition (Counter Culture)


Highmountain Tauren
Locked Base Classes: Rogue, Mage, Priest, Paladin, Warlock
  • Rogue:
    • Bloodtotem Tribe
  • Mage:
    • Defiance of Tradition (Dalaran Transplant)
  • Priest:
    • Priest of An'she
  • Paladin:
    • Sunwalker
    • Mount: Spirit of Eche'ro
  • Warlock:
    • Power of my Enemy (Anti-burning legion counter-culture)


Nightborne
Locked Base Classes: Shaman, Druid, Paladin
  • Shaman:
    • Vintner
    • Totems: Arcwine bottles
  • Druid:
    • Reconnection to tradition
    • Forms: Manasaber (Cat), Galaxy Bear (Bear), Leyline emphasis on other forms
  • Paladin:
    • Defiance of Legion Occupation (Counter Culture)
    • Mount: Leyline Spider


Mag'har Orc
Locked Base Classes: Druid, Paladin, Warlock
  • Druid:
    • Laughing Skull tribe (call of the Goregrond Wilds)
    • Forms: Same as Orc Druid would use, Laughing skull mask on the shoulder)
  • Paladin:
    • Lightbound repentant
    • Mount: Lightforged Wolf
  • Warlock:
    • Enslavement of Demons (The one path is the Light)
    • Summons: Lightforged variants of standard Warlock summons


Zandalari Trolls
Locked Base Classes: Warlock
  • Warlock:
    • Loaspeaker
    • Summons: Various loa in place of standard warlock summons. Voidwalker = Krag'wa, Dreadlord = Eraka no Kimbul, Infernal = Akunda, Imp = Jani, Succubus = Pa'ku, Felhunter = Gral, Felguard = Gonk


GOAL: To structure the conversation about new class/race combos
TL, DR: Skim for the race you wish to discuss, read the bullets, and comment accordingly.
PLEA: Please please please don't use the forum quote option on this original post. It is enormous.
EDIT [11/15/2018]: More special summons for Pandaren Warlocks and Zandalari "Loaspeakers" (Gral moved to Felhunter, tiger loa made Dreadlord). Added Field Medic to Orc Priest options
Okay, I'll get the ball rolling. Let's open up the discussion with the two most problematic combos above: Night Elf Warlock and Draenei Warlock.

These two races react unpleasantly to fel magic: the first transforms into a satyr from prolonged exposure (even their demon hunters drift in that direction) and the second turns red or is broken into a devolved wreck.

For other races that would face this problem (Mag'har orcs, who would turn green, and Lightforged Draenei who would explode), it could be circumvented with lightbound subjugation of the demonic servants. Warlocks for these would basically be 'pet priests'.
...However, that evasion doesn't work for the Night Elves or the regular Draenei. The first (Night Elves) has not shown any inclination to crusade and recruit against the target's will--particularly with demons which stand as a long-time enemy to their people. The second (Draenei) might be inclined to subjugate with the light, but doing so is no different than how the Lightforged Draenei would use the Warlock class... it feels forced and redundant.

So what is the alternative? Well... Azshara's Highborne were changed by their abuse of arcane magic, so it might be possible to hand-wave that Night Elf Warlocks are Highborne (just as they did with the mages). It feels a little hollow, but it works as a counter-cultural exploration, just like orc warlocks already do.

As for Draenei... the only way I can think to give them warlocks would be to also give them Broken character customization. That way, the class could heavily imply that it will slowly corrupt the caster, eventually devolving them into Broken. Adding a few heads that lack horns and instead apply torso tendrils would do leaps and bounds for opening up Draenei lore.

I'm eager to hear your thoughts on the topic.
So, my problem lies in goblin druids. It was bad enough lorewise they became shamans and priests. If you look at the Taunka and how they control the elements, and the churches from the 15th century, it makes sense. But druids are one with nature even more than shamans. Druids like to take care of nature. Goblins like to put a tasteful gas station on an ancient forest.
Not every race needs to be every class.
11/10/2018 10:36 PMPosted by Annanetta
So, my problem lies in goblin druids. It was bad enough lorewise they became shamans and priests. If you look at the Taunka and how they control the elements, and the churches from the 15th century, it makes sense. But druids are one with nature even more than shamans. Druids like to take care of nature. Goblins like to put a tasteful gas station on an ancient forest.
Yes. As do Gnomes, their technology profanes the environment around them and is thematically dissonant from the Druid philosophy.
That's why they wouldn't be druids, they would be tinkers. Short of the odd aberrant appearance in a druid-specific context (such as Moonglade, where their presence would appear to be for the purpose of clear-cutting with shredders, or the Dreamgrove where they would likewise be an invasive force, and only for 10 levels at that), they would be thematically distinct. The only reason to frame it as a druid is to save development resources on producing a new class: if tinkers have the same basic mechanics as a druid then the same game balance applies.

This falls into the category of "same mechanic, different aesthetic", into which several of the bullets drift. For instance, lightbinding demons into obedient servants to do one's bidding doesn't make you a warlock, but the game might handle the situation by sharing the mechanics from the warlock class.

11/10/2018 10:37 PMPosted by Twibiju
Not every race needs to be every class.
Not the purpose of this thread. The goal here is to demonstrate that some class options have strong justifications. You will note that some of the arguments are weaker than others: changing a class's aesthetic or draping it in a different power-source is a weaker argument than a counter-culture, and counter-cultures are a weaker argument than cultural drift.

For example, a Mag'har orc has a better justification for the Druid class than an Azerothian orc does, but both have less justification than a Dark Iron dwarf, due to the Dark Iron's direct ties to Ragnaros, the Firelands, and consequently the Druids of the Flame.

All that said, classes are the means through which players interact with the game, and races are the means through which players define themselves aesthetically. Increasing the options where the lore does not require backflips is thus a beneficial act, because it widens the target audience without hemorrhaging the existing playerbase.

EDIT: Typo
For LF dranei warlocks I was thinking they could change the schools of magic to light in place of shadow and fire in place of fel. Change the icons and their lore is that they're "inquisitors" kind of like how BE paladins were initially called blood knights.

Edit: they should also change the icons too. The warlock skill icons don't fit the inquisitor theme. But LF demons that are enslaved would be super cool.
11/11/2018 02:30 PMPosted by Holidaymug
For LF dranei warlocks I was thinking they could change the schools of magic to light in place of shadow and fire in place of fel. Change the icons and their lore is that they're "inquisitors" kind of like how BE paladins were initially called blood knights.

Edit: they should also change the icons too. The warlock skill icons don't fit the inquisitor theme. But LF demons that are enslaved would be super cool.
There's a fascinating plot vector that has already been seeded for this sort of thing. When you think about it, Yrel is essentially doing this with the orcs on AU Draenor. Which would mean she considers them--and all not indoctrinated in the light--to be demons. Having the Lightforged do the same thing with Legion remnants would be a good way to give the race some flavor (outside of being shiny goodie-goodies), would add appeal to them over regular Draenei (because they'd have a class the regular one can't use, currently or possibly ever), and would set some good precedent for class reskinning on other races.

Unfortunately, as you said, it would require damage type changes, new icons, new demon textures, and even spell effect recolors, which means the option is much more involved than just flipping a switch. It's the sort of thing that would be put forth as an expansion feature, rather than a patch afterthought.

Then again, Blizzard loves to do that. Look at the huge deal they made about Gnome Hunters. They even mocked them during Nesingwary's Hunt in Highmountain... despite the fact that gnomes have been making guns for ages.
Would love to see all these one day. But I don't think blizzard wants to do it. I do hope one day they will add a no limits server so we can just play any race/class combo we want and just focus on gameplay. (Just like in overwatch where they have skins that don't have anything to do with the universe they live in).
11/14/2018 12:53 PMPosted by Terranox
Would love to see all these one day. But I don't think blizzard wants to do it. I do hope one day they will add a no limits server so we can just play any race/class combo we want and just focus on gameplay. (Just like in overwatch where they have skins that don't have anything to do with the universe they live in).
That's an intriguing premise. Such a server (maybe called an Unbound server) would have to be insular, meaning it could only cross-realm with other unbound servers, and could only allow character transfers to and from other unbound servers. It would also require a few new game resources, such as generic faction forms for druids and a generic paladin mount (unless the developers were willing to actually give them new forms, and let the lore catch up later :O).

As for all of them being made available in any other context... there are a few options on my list that are <big> stretches. The worst offenders are the 'appropriation' classes, where a race's only connection to a class is through a faction ally. Gnomish Paladins, for instance, are a weak showing because their only interest is through their connections to humans and dwarves.

Humans are another problem in that regard. Since the humans in the game are Stormwindians and that nation is very much a theocracy, their heroes have very little inclination to explore other sources of power. Short of a new plot development there is little reason for humans to deviate. In fact, only Shamanism is taboo in their kingdom, so you can't even pursue it from a 'forbidden fruit' angle.
A reflavor is an option... tying all things human to the light as the Lightforged Draenei do. But Anduin would need to abdicate before something like that could happen; even as a priest/paladin he is too gentle to turn the faith of his people into a hammer.
That's quite an interesting read. Thumbs up!

I don't necessarily agree with all of it, but I like how you have introduced a few plausible options to cover each of the missing combinations.
I tend to forget that Trolls and Dwarves have such a rich choice of classes, too.

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