Role Play: Half breeds and roleplay
Usually when you’re creating a character, you want to make something unique, distinctive — something nobody’s really ever seen before. It’s only natural to want to make a character that’s special. After all, you want to find other people to roleplay with, and the quickest way to get someone’s notice is to have something about your character that really stands out. It could be their appearance, it could be how they talk or dress, or it could be their origin, for that matter.
Half breeds aren’t exactly common in World of Warcraft, but they’re not unheard of, either. However, players don’t have the option to roll a half breed character at startup. For some roleplayers, the idea of half breeds is a hot topic — some people think you should only be roleplaying as your avatar. But with all the addons out there that are available for writing detailed profiles, it’s easy enough to simply clarify your character’s origins via the addon and make them whatever you’d like. But what’s considered acceptable, when it comes to half breed characters? Is it worth all the trouble?
Half breeds in Warcraft
Half breeds aren’t unheard of in WoW lore — they’re simply fairly rare. To date, only a handful or so have made it to the pages of the various novels and short stories out there, and half breed characters that appear in WoW don’t really have any kind of distinctive character models to delineate them as such. Combine that with the fact that most races didn’t actually meet face to face until the Third War, which was only about ten years ago in the Warcraft timeline, and the chances that you’ll find any full-grown halfbreed out and wandering the world are fairly slim. Still, the races of the Eastern Kingdoms were banding together all the way back during the First War, so it’s not unheard of — and we do have a few examples to look at.
Half elves are the product of a Human/Elf pairing. We’ve only got a few of these on record, and they’re all from the Windrunner line. Turalyon and Alleria Windrunner had a son, Arator, who can still be found in Outland (and it’s possible we might even see him make a return in Legion, if his parents are coming back). Rhonin and Vereesa Windrunner had a pair of twins, Giramar and Galadin. There was also reference made to the fact that the first Guardian of Tirisfal, Alodi, was a half elf, although his parentage is unknown. You’ve also technically got another Half-Elf with Kalecgos, who takes on that guise when he’s not a dragon — but of course he’s not a true Half-Elf, he’s just using that appearance for whatever reasons he sees fit.
All of these are High Elf and Human progeny (with the exception of Kalecgos, of course.) Once the Third War hit, the Scourge rampaged through Silvermoon and the Sunwell was destroyed, the High Elves took the name sin’dorei, or Blood Elf, in honor of those who had fallen in the war. At that point and time, over 90% of the High Elf population was decimated, which left the Blood Elves fairly few in number, and likely lessened the chance of any half breed pairings considerably.
As for the High Elves still in game, they were the Elves who weren’t in Quel’Thalas during the Third War — either they were studying magic at Dalaran, or scattered at assorted outposts in the Eastern Kingdoms. Because these Elves were already associating with the other races of the world, and not really secluded, it’s entirely possible other Half Elf children may have been born and raised in that time frame.
We’ve got one major name for a Half-Orc, and that’s Garona. While she thought at one point that she was half Human, it was later revealed in the comics series that she was in fact a Half-Draenei, with no Human blood at all. Garona was the product of Gul’dan’s breeding experiments, born and raised in captivity to be an assassin for the Horde. Although her situation and status in the Horde were both fairly unique, it’s not really far-fetched to say that Gul’dan had other such “experiments” that served in the Horde during that time frame.
Once Garona was on Azeroth, she had a child, Med’an, with the Human sorcerer Medivh. Med’an stretches the bloodline even further, being one quarter Orc, one quarter Draenei, and half Human, technically speaking. Med’an is, however, the only example of anything that could be considered an Orc/Human pairing — during the First War, Orcs and Humans were busy trying to kill each other, not having babies. Given the animosity between the two races, that kind of pairing is rare.
However, not all Half-Orcs were necessarily born from violence or unnatural magic. Lantresor is another Half-Orc/Half-Draenei hybrid, and although we don’t really know who his parents were, he’s never mentioned that he was the product of any kind of unnatural magic. He did, however, state that his kind is a “rare breed, most having been killed decades ago.” This also makes sense, because the Orcs and Draenei, although amicable enough at first, were driven into war through the machinations of the Burning Legion. Any pairings between the two races would automatically be looked upon with derision, at that point in history, and it’s very likely those that weren’t smart enough to hide or strong enough to defend themselves would have died.
There are no known pairings of any Half-Trolls out there, and for good reason — Trolls are by and large very much about their own race, having come from the bloodline of a mighty Empire that once ruled the world, in ancient times. Most of the time, when Trolls encountered other races, they would simply kill them. They aren’t exactly a friendly lot. As for Gnomes and Dwarves, the two races have been at each other’s sides for years, so it’s not unheard of that they might intermingle — but there are no records of them having ever done so in lore. Half-Goblins are similarly unlikely, but not out of the question — the various Goblin cartels are spread all over Azeroth, after all.
Half-Worgen children are impossible. The Worgen curse is not passed by bloodline, so a child born from a Worgen parent wouldn’t be a Worgen at all. They have to either be bitten, or drink Worgen blood in order to be afflicted with the curse. A child with a Worgen mother is simply considered Human, and if they had a parent of another race, they’d be considered Half-Human, half whatever that other race happened to be. Half-Pandaren are also highly improbable, simply given the nature of the Pandaren race. They were secluded on Pandaria for ten thousand years, and secluded on the Wandering Isle for the most part, with few deigning to go out and explore the world as time went on. Half-Tauren are as unlikely for similar reasons — the Tauren were a nomadic race that didn’t really have much to do with the other races of the world until they joined the Horde during the Third War.
This isn’t to say any of these pairings are completely impossible (with the exception of Worgen children), they’re just highly unlikely given the history of these races. If you’re planning on roleplaying an unusual hybrid, you’re going to want to pay attention to where they came from, how their parents met, what the time period was, and why that pairing was made, because these are the sort of things other roleplayers are naturally going to ask a half breed character about. And as a half breed roleplayer, there’s a few other things you’ll want to keep in mind in regards to other roleplayers, as well.
Most half breeds aren’t exactly welcomed with open arms. They’re viewed as an anomaly, something abnormal and strange. Lantresor summed it up when he said he was Half-Orc, Half-Draenei, and because of this, he was neither one. A half breed has a hard life ahead of them, just due to the unusual circumstances of their birth and bloodline. Speaking of which, that’s something you’ll have to consider as well. With a half-breed character, you’re not just coming up with one character profile and back story, you’re coming up with three — the half breed, and their parents.
Making a half breed character isn’t at all out of the question — after all, you can roleplay whatever you want. But keep in mind that these types of characters aren’t necessarily going to get you more roleplay. Half breeds aren’t at all common in Warcraft lore, so roleplayers might not be as receptive to the idea of a half breed character as they would just another Human or Orc. If you’re going to go the route of creating a half breed character, consider that it’s going to take a lot more work on your end to make them acceptably “real” from the standpoint of those that lean heavily on Warcraft lore, and even then people might shy away. It’s a hard road to take, and a hard kind of character to play, but it can be fun if you’re willing to put in the work and give it a shot.
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