Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Night Elf Paladins

As the new expansion is showing itself on the horizon, and the little tidbit we got about more paladin lore in Warlords of Draenor, I thought it would be fun to explore which other races could become paladins. I decided to start with the Night Elves. In most cases my starting point is for the race to have two other specific classes. The warrior, and the priest. This is how the first Paladins on Azeroth came to be, and it turned out to a success.

Nigth Elves believe in Elune, the Moon Goddess. Taurens believe that Elune is just another aspect of the Earth Mother. More specifically another eye of the Earth Mother. The other eye is the Sun, also called An'she by the Tauren. Basically, Tauren worship the Sun, the Moon, the spirits, all in order to maintain the balance of the Mother Earth, while Night Elves focus solely on the Moon. Moon is still Light for all we care, as much as the Sun is.

All philosophy aside, Light is Light no matter how you call it, or what name you give it. What is more interesting is that Night Elves already have paladins of their own. This paladin order is made of only women, called Huntresses. Huntresses are an elite unit of the Darnassian army. They are mounted warriors empowered by Elune. Huntress is not a female hunter. Hunter, male of female, is still called a hunter. Huntress on the other hand, is the elite of the elite. A warrior riding their mount into the battle, and calling on the strength granted to her by Elune. Just like every other paladin calls for Light, or Sun to grant him strength.

Now, to understand why there are only women here, you need to know about Night Elven society. Down to its core it is very matriarchal. The whole society is very gender-discriminative if you will. Only women can be priestesses, only men can be druids. There are no mages, because arcane is forbidden.

Yet, this is how it was for last ten thousand years. Not so much these days. Night Elves are a society that brought down so many barriers that existed in their society in recent years, you could honestly call it a silent revolution. Women could become druids, men could become priests. Hell, even mages were if not welcomed back, at least allowed to live in Darnassus. They went through some really groundbreaking changes. And all that in less than fifteen years after ten thousand years of stagnation.

What gives me hope for Night Elf paladins is just that neck-breaking pace of accepting change after change. The decision to allow mages was for Night Elves the greatest leap they have ever made. In the eyes of the Night Elves, mage is as bad, if not worse, as a warlock.

The story itself can be spun as much as you like until you justify the existence of paladins among Night Elves. Some of the adventuring warriors and priests might find the teachings of Humans, Dwarves and Draenei very similar to their own. Maybe some of them always wanted to serve Elune in battle, but were not able to because of the restrictions of society, and now there is nobody to stop them.

Maybe after all the losses in recent years the Night Elves suffered, the High Command cannot afford any more who they can take in their army, and all are welcome. Thus everyone capable enough can become a Huntress, male or female, even though I admit the name is a bit silly if you have a male huntress. As the Tauren paladins are Sunwalkers, maybe they could be called Moonwalkers. Maybe Moonrunners to avoid confusion.

All in all, there are so many possibilities, many of which make sense without much work. What is more, all that can be simply implemented, and knowing there are no new classes this time around, some more class restrictions gone would be a nice addition in itself. I admit that some simply do not make sense, while for others there is no reason not to have them.

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