Blood Elf History, A Summary

While I haven’t completely finished blood elf history, a lot of the events that happened to these fel-loving arcane-sucking addicts happened after the introduction of the Burning Crusade expansion. I’ll be doing a detailed list of posts regarding the lore and story behind the Burning Crusade at some point, but for now I think it’s safe to stop at the stopping point I found with the blood elves in Azeroth.

It may seem like the ‘blood elf’ portion of blood elf history is awfully short – and it is. The sin’dorei didn’t become the sin’dorei until quite recently in the Warcraft timeline. For now though, it’s time to wrap up with some of the most commonly asked questions and misconceptions about the little pointy eared buggers, as well as making sense of some of the in-game contradictions.

Blood elves are night elves?

Oh heck no. They were, at one point in time – mind you this was well over 10,000 years ago in the Warcraft time line. But the changes that struck them after they left Nordrassil’s range of protection were enough to dramatically differentiate them from the night elves you know today.

So who are these high elves wandering around then? They don’t have the green eyes but they look like the blood elves do.

Those are the high elves that left back after the Second War. Remember when Anasterian pulled his support from the Alliance, Kael’thas stayed behind because he was in the Kirin Tor? There were other high elves that stayed behind as well, to continue teaching the humans and other races the magic that they’d learned. These high elves weren’t affected by the destruction of the Sunwell – why? Probably because they had spent so much time away from it that they were nowhere near as closely tied to it as the elves that lived in Silvermoon proper.

These high elves had to learn proper control, and how to deal with being away from the Sunwell right from the start – so its destruction simply didn’t affect them in the same way. It may also be (and this is speculation, mind) that they learned a few things from the creatures they were teaching about alternate ways of keeping that power that is inherent to their survival alive. The humans they taught weren’t really tied to the Sunwell after all – they looked for ley lines and other sources of magic to pull their abilities from, so perhaps the high elves just learned to do that.

How come the high elves are allied with the Alliance? Or they con friendly with the Alliance anyway, but they don’t seem to like the blood elves at all.

Because these high elves that left did so in order to teach the various Alliance races magic. It could be that they didn’t agree with Anasterian’s decision to pull his support from the Alliance, it could be that they saw the path the quel’dorei of Quel’Thalas were headed down, and they simply didn’t wish to follow that path. And now that the sin’dorei are obviously following a much darker path…well, they don’t really want anything to do with that.

So why is that Highborne in Darnassus a night elf?

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Tauren History Part One: Why Do Cows Suddenly Appear Every Time You Are Near?

We’re taking it a little easy this week, as last week’s foray into the world of Night Elf history still has my fingers bruised. This week we’re looking at another of the Horde races – the loveable, cuddly tauren, aka ‘WoW’s moocows’. The Tauren are often viewed as the ‘good guys of the Horde’ – whereas the other Horde races can and have been brutal, bloodthirsty and rage-ridden, the tauren are generally viewed as the Horde’s peaceful inhabitants, and more often than not win the title of World of Warcraft’s ‘nicest’ race. Is this a correct assumption to make? Are the Tauren really that pleasant, fun-loving and good-natured? Where exactly did they come from anyway, and why on earth did they bother joining up with the Horde?

While Night Elf history is well documented, one can hardly say the same of the Tauren race. Much of their history is orally told through story and myth, and very little of it is written down anywhere to actually read. This makes documenting Tauren history a challenge of a different kind – rather than being almost too much history to go over in a week’s time, the Tauren may not have enough to go on. Therefore the Tauren history this week is going to be a little different – mostly conjecture based upon the small amount of material Blizzard has given us to work with. Keep in mind that almost none of the following assumptions and conclusions have been validated by Blizzard as being correct. This week, it’s a week of historical speculation!

The Earthmother and the Creation of the Tauren

The tauren race has been around for an undefined period of time. Quiet for the most part, though they were present before the Sundering that split the great continent of Kalimdor into the continents we are familiar with today. Which…means I need to adjust the map of pre-Sundering Kalimdor I made and add the Tauren territories in there. I’ll post that later this week. At any rate! Tauren. The earliest records of any kind of Tauren history are hanging in the great tent occupied by Arch Druid Hamuul Runetotem over on Elder Rise in Thunder Bluff. These scrolls are readable by players, and placed sequentially around the tent in a clockwise fashion. There are five Thunder Bluff Scrolls, and they tell the earliest stories of Tauren civilization and birth. I’ll be examining each one of these piece by piece over the next several days, and what the possible symbolism and myths behind each scroll could mean.

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Night Elf History, A Summary

Whew. The history of the night elves is probably one of the most complicated pieces of Warcraft history created, spanning thousands of years with a huge cast of characters. There was no possible way to touch on them all, so I tried to keep it brief – and even brief, it was still incredibly long.

The Night Elves are members of the Alliance, and many view them as Good Guys, intent on protecting Azeroth and keeping it from harm under the charge of the Dragonflights. Let’s address some common thoughts about Night Elves:

1. Night Elves are good! They’re druids and they protect the planet!

Well…sorta. They do NOW – after having learned a valuable lesson. But in the process of learning that lesson, the world was ripped apart. And while the explosion was because of trying to prevent actions that the quel’dorei had set into motion, it was ultimately a druid that ripped the planet into pieces. Was there any other way? It’s…doubtful. The Burning Legion is a pretty badass bunch of characters, and it takes a lot to defeat them – or it did then. …now you just need seven or so level 80′s to click some rocks and beat the stuffing out of a pit lord, and about that many to go make Archimonde your personal punching bag. But back then? Ooo. Bad. Bad bad bad.

2. Illidan Stormrage was a hero!

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History of the Night Elves – Dragons, Druids and Demigods, Oh My!

Welcome back to Night Elf History! This is where the history of the night elves gets a little muddled. See, there’s several different versions of the timeline surrounding the Well of Eternity – one in the game manual for Warcraft III, the one on the official site of the game as part of the History of Warcraft section, and then a couple more from the War of the Ancients Trilogy by Richard A. Knaak. In the War of the Ancients Trilogy, there were two distinct timelines – one version that happened before history was altered, and one that was created by three characters from present day that traveled back in time to witness the whole shebang, and invariably change parts of it for good.

While I prefer the unaltered version, Blizzard considers the War of the Ancients Trilogy as the official source of ‘true’ history, and so there will be brief (very brief) mentions of the characters that traveled back in time. Confusing enough yet? Just keep in mind that humans and orcs didn’t really exist yet, and that dragons largely kept to themselves. Moving on!

The Druidic Kaldorei and Elune

While the quel’dorei were making Zin-Azshari their home, the kaldorei were making a home of their own – Suramar. Suramar was considered the religious capital of elven society, built along the outskirts of Zin-Azshari and home to the temples and the academies. Essentially, if one was training in the arts of magic, be it druidic or arcane, one trained out in Suramar. If one grew badass enough to be considered a Highborne, one moved further INTO the city, closer to the well.  Suramar had several sections within it. Foremost was a great garden in the middle that was home to the Boughs of Azshara, two twin trees that were sacred to all kaldorei and quel’dorei. It also contained the temple district, which bordered the edges of the Well of Eternity and contained the Eternal Palace that Queen Azshara called home.

There were several notable residents of Suramar, but there are three that stand out from the rest – Tyrande Whisperwind, and the brothers Stormrage.

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Azeroth, Pre-Sundering – A Visual Guide

You know, I’ve looked and I’ve looked online just about everywhere, but I have yet to find a map of pre-Sundering Azeroth – what the continents looked like before the Sundering that split them into the continents of Kalimdor, Eastern Kingdoms, and Northrend that we know today.

I can talk till I’m blue in the face about how Azeroth used to be nothing BUT Kalimdor, but it’s easier to show what it looked like – please note, the following is a VERY rough map, and not officially sanctioned by Blizzard. It is more than likely that the land mass was larger than what I’ve depicted here, and the territorial borders were placed there in the interests of speculation and theory more than anything.


Click for a larger image.

What you can see from this is that #1 – Zin-Azshari? Was HUGE. It covered a VERY large portion of Kalimdor. Think of New York City, and then triple or quadruple it. The Highborne concentrated closer to the Well of Eternity (the blue portion in the center), and Suramar bordered it on the far side. I’ll go more into Suramar and what exactly you could find there in the next Night Elf History post – but for now, think of it as the religious capital of the kaldorei.

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