How to roleplay a blood elf
|How to roleplay|
The blood elves, like many other races, have a shared experience that binds them together as a people: that of the Scourge invasion, and the almost total destruction of Quel'Thalas. However, the blood elves are different to the other races in several respects, which makes them much closer as a people.
Firstly, the Scourge invasion happened only five years ago. No matter what the age of your character is, it will still be extremely fresh in their mind.
Secondly, 90% of the population died. The survivors faced two grueling tasks - burning their beloved homeland to convince the Scourge to leave, and fighting a heroic last stand on Sunstrider Isle.
What does this mean for your character's general demeanor and personality? Well, unless they have a very, very good reason to be, they are not going to be very happy. Chance are very high that they will have lost a large number of friends and family in the conflict, and the high elven seclusion and long lifetimes mean this will be quite difficult for them to deal with. This means that any overtly happy blood elves are likely to be regarded as either insane or fanatical devotees of Kael'thas. This is a key point to remember: by being a blood elf, you have to have taken part in this conflict, and so you will bear the scars. There isn't much scope for developing a blood elf without including some reference to this event.
The blood elf society is run by the King, or currently the Regent-Lord, with the Magisters, who are overwhelmingly totalitarian, as a sort of advosory. They do have some power, but only what they are given. Their Arcane Guardians keep the peace by unthinking force, and any dissenters are mind controlled into fitting in.
This has several key ramifications, especially when roleplaying within Silvermoon City itself.
Firstly, you are unlikely to criticize the City or the Government brazenly and in public places, such as the inn. Nor are you likely to declare that this is a free country and you can say what you like. You live in an oppressive nation, and will have to express any dissenting opinions outside of Silvermoon or in secluded places, away from the paths of the Arcane Guardians.
Secondly, unless you are a mage, warlock, or paladin, or hunter you are unlikely to hold power. This is something that RPers with stories of aristocracy should bear in mind; if you are not a mage, you are unlikely to hold power in a city that defines class by profession. The Farstriders - in game terms, the hunters - offer an alternative power base, perhaps one more morally upright. Please bear this in mind when relating your class to your character's story.
Relation to the rest of the Horde
This is a big issue that blood elf RPers make lots of mistakes with. There is one fundamental rule: You do not automatically like the rest of the horde but it's down to you. You can trust them or not.
Remember, you are a cultured, scholarly race, and every other race in the horde is ostensibly completely unlike this. There are also ancient conflicts between some races and your own; you have been fighting trolls for centuries, for instance. While your enemies have never been Darkspears, you are unlikely to trust them, nor are you likely to be pleased to see them in your lands. However you don't call them barbarians and shout them out of Silvermoon.
Forsaken are a bit different, and a bit more open to individual preference. Some players will prefer to RP a hatred of them, as they are suffering the same affliction that killed the majority of their race and caused Silvermoon's downfall; others, like the questgivers try to reinforce, will see them as valuable allies against the Scourge, and facing a similar plight to the blood elves. It's up to your character's personality here. Plus they, while violent, have a deep scholarly past within the apothecaries.
Orcs and will probably be regarded as savage and crude. Orcs have killed many Blood Elves in the past, and their societies differ greatly: and their societies consider physical rather than mental strength to be the greatest merit. They will most likely have to earn your character's trust and approval. Ironically, though, Orcs have a large tendancy to 'like' blood elves, feeling a kinship with them due to the shared fel-taint.
Tauren, however, are basically the reverse of the Orcs. While Blood Elves are fond of the peaceful-giants, for their close affinity to Nature (which the Elves are lessening in, though not entirely), the Tauren despise them. It's not as much them, that they despise, but their scent. Tauren are able to literally smell magic, and aren't fond of it, especially not fel magic. This gives the Blood Elves an almost-poisonous aura for the Tauren. So if a Tauren avoids you, don't take it personally.
Relationship with the Alliance
Humans are also a mixed bag - their racism caused the Alliance to betray your people, but on the other hand you may have had some good human friends whilst in the Alliance, or perhaps in places like Dalaran. You will probably be indifferent towards dwarves and gnomes; react to them in a similar way as you react to humans. It's pretty much the same on your side but gnomes don't bear grudges often and they delve into the arcane as well.
Draenei are an uncertainty. With knowledge of Kael's adventures, you will have known they helped the blood elves and Illidan, and so you might look upon them favorably. It's difficult to say how a blood elf would react to them. Thoughts? The rivalry between the Aldor and the Scryers could be a good way for you to show your choice or make you choice on trusting them or not.
Elves are unusual. Most night elves hate blood elves because in the past, the Highborne (now blood/high elves) caused the Great Sundering. Your character may choose to return the hatred or not. If you don't hate the night elves, you are likely to be extremely distrusting of them.
Lots of people use roleplaying a high elf to bypass the necessarily angsty and perhaps undesirable features of being a blood elf. This has a few major issues.
A large amount of high elves still pledge allegiance to the Alliance. Declaring yourself as a high elf should lead to serious mistrust from other members of the horde. Many may even consider you Alliance. The blood elves are, physically, the same as high elves.
Also, high elves are regarded as cowardly and disrespectful by blood elves for not honoring the fallen by changing their racial identity. You will not be very welcome in Silvermoon, therefore, and may wish to keep your identity secret and your eyes hidden. You also don't tend to take as many risks as the blood elves do in their arcane experiments.
Finally, the numbers of high elves are very, very small, and you may wish to claim one of the high elven outposts in the Hinterlands or EPL as your home. Apart from that, there are many interesting RP opportunties for a high elf, especially as a paladin who is actually holy. Sylvanas Windrunner was a high elf remember and now seems to resent the fact that some consider her one still.
Finally, some basic information on each class.
Death knights will likely be the most hated of all blood elves. In the Third War, the death knight Arthas Menethil tore through Quel'Thalas with the Scourge, destroying most of the land and half of Silvermoon City before tainting the Sunwell, leading to its destruction. The Dead Scar stands as a permanent reminder of this. You may not have personally defiled the Sunwell, but VERY few blood elves will trust you because of this. You're very unlikely to have friends among blood elves. The few blood elves who don't despise you will be extremely cautious when dealing with you. The other races of the Horde won't be too fond of you either, other death knights aside.
Mages are the elite, and are mostly dealt with earlier in the guide. They could well be reclusive and weary due to extensive studies. Their magical addiction could be furthered or lessened, depending on your choice. The blood elves are known for not fearing the arcane so you are likely to be bold and reckless compared to the more conservative humans and gnomes. You are generally an elite caste and sometimes consider yourself above other classes, however as mentioned in an early blood elf quest, the blood elves have to work together.
Warlocks are mages that are following a different path. Warlocks were considered simply another type of mage in Elven society, until Kael's betrayal became more publicly known and the hatred for all things demonic was rekindled. While politically the warlocks would still be smiled upon, publicly they are frowned upon. It is illegal to have your demons out in Silvermoon when RPing a warlock. Blood elves are known for their experiments and the warlocks are former arcanists. Perhaps your experiments into magic went to far.
Priests once held a position of political esteem in Thalassian society, but since the events of the Scourge overtaking Quel'thalas, almost all elves lost their faith in the Light. Priests, therefore, are a much lower rank on the hierarchial ladder than they once were. If you are RPing an Elven Priest, perhaps you hold a small disdain for society, lowering you? You would also dislike most Blood Knights, who FORCE the Light to their will (a large number of them your former colleagues, as well as quite a few former Magisters).
Rogues are not just criminals and exiles in Elven society. While it is possible, like any race, that that is exactly what you are, there are also much more 'honorable' forms of Rogues to be RolePlayed. For instance, you could be a member of the Retainers, a section of the Silvermoon Military that is quite often left int he dark, and for good reason. There is very little lore on them, to the point that it is even unknown as to what exactly their role is. Most look at them as, simply, a rogue-sect of the guard, but some theorize that they are also spies and assassins for the governemnt. Personally, I go with the theory that they are both part of the guard,, as well as some of their more esteemed members receiving out-of-kingdom assignments.
Paladins are a very divided group in Thalassian society. Prior to the restoration of the Sunwell, they were arrogant warriors of the Light who used the powers of M'uru to force it to their will. They saw no fault in this after the Light abandoned them to the Scourge's invasion. Now, though, they are very divided. There are the Argent elves, who are much like the Human Paladins, and then there are the remaining Blood Knights. Most Blood Knights have seen the error of their ways, thanks to High Prophet Velen, and have a mentality similar to the Argents, but there are still some 'snobbish' ones out there, who view themselves as higher-par than most other Blood Elves. Blood Knights are an organization that is basically an Elite faction of the guard, when acting in Silvermoon itself. They would have the same duties as any other of the Silvermoon Guardians. However, they are also often sent to foreign areas as honorguards, ambassadors, and more.
Hunters have the option of being a member of the Farstriders, who are basically Elven Homeland Security and defend the borders of Quel'thalas from internal and encroaching threats, or a typical Ranger, who is not part of the Farstriders but still take on similar duties depending on where they are assigned. You may be placed in Silvermoon and basically another sect of the Guardians, or you may be placed in the forest itself and basically be Scourge Clean-Up Crew. Of course there are other, more unique options, as well as more detailed options within these two. As a Farstrider, you may be one of the most elite of their group, a Troll-Hunter. You could be a Flaconer, who specializes in raising Dragonhawks for service. Or, to be neither, perhaps you're simply a cruel being who tortures beasts into submission and use them for your own personal gain?