Dark Elves in other media

This forum is for general discussion and open to all. If there is anything you wish to talk about with the Chosen then this is the place to do it. Please limit the use of this forum to out of character discussions. For in character roleplaying please use the Free Form Roleplaying forum.

Moderators: Shir'le E. Illios, Bhaern Quel

Orin
Traveler
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:35 am
Location: St. Joseph MO
Contact:

Dark Elves in other media

Postby Orin » Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:42 pm

Hey all, I posed this question in another recent post, but wanted to start a topic on it. What are some of everyone's other favorite depictions of dark elves in media? This can be anything from other campaign settings like the drow of Eberron, to completely different systems like the Dark Elves of Norath from Everquest.

I personally have always been keen on the Dunmer of the Elder Scrolls series, I've also been playing a lot of Kingdoms of Amalur, which has both elves (Alfar) and Fae of the Summer and Winter courts. Both the Fae, as well as the Ljosalfar and Dokalfar are very dark elven themed and the House of Ballads is something most Eilistraeeans can identify with, methinks.

Also, Kingdom's of Amalur is one of the the best games I've EVER played and if you haven't yet, see if you are able to get a copy and try it. It's just....good.

Thoughts?

Have a wonderful day.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

Irennan
Resident
Posts: 589
Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2011 5:13 pm
Location: Italy

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Irennan » Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:28 am

Aside from the Warcraft Night Elves, the Dark Eldar from Warhammer 40k. I generally wholeheartedly dislike [All X] races, but in 40k--the Grimdark setting--they definitely fit. The Dark Eldar are simply lusting psychopaths, driven by uncontrolled sadistic passion. Basically, the concept is that the Eldar are beings that experience sensations so intensely that they get addicted to it. They want more and more intensity and more and more variety. In the ages past, that led to them becoming so depraved that Slaanesh, the chaos god of lust and depravity, was born *just* because of them. He (She?) nearly exterminated the whole race and their gods, and those who survived to such a tragedy came up with the "paths", a system of life to prevent their kin from falling into the same depravity as before.

The Dark Eldar said "f**k that" and went on to make their own civilization built around an even more exacerbated version of that depravity and uncontrolled passion. At this point, they also literally feed on the suffering that they inflict, and need pain to survive (bonus points, they don't have a grudge with their Craftworld or Exodite Eldar cousins, and can even team up in some weird situations. To the Eldar, the dark ones are like that member of your family that you don't talk about). The Lolthite are cartoon villains in comparison (well, the Lolthite kinda are cartoon villains, but you get the point).

Orin
Traveler
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:35 am
Location: St. Joseph MO
Contact:

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Orin » Thu Jun 07, 2018 6:03 pm

I really like the Dunmer from ES for almost exactly the opposite reason. lol.

With respect to realism in culture, a lot of the races in Elder Scrolls are really great, but the Dunmer, for me at least, are easily the most interesting. They have a dichotomy that blends so many disparate cultures together as to seem at once familiar, alien and at the same time completely believable. They aren't at all wholly evil, but nor are they wholly righteous. They are proud of their culture, even and especially the aspects of it that most races abhor like slavery, while at the same time taking strong moral stances against ethically questionable practices from other cultures such as necromancy. Yet, at the same time they practice a form of tomb guardianship that in and of itself is somewhat necromantic, though they are quick to explain the difference to anyone who makes the comparison. They're religious fervor is unmatched and they hunt down and kill both warlocks and witches for consorting with daedra, yet that same religion incorporates aspects of daedra worship. They are known for their promiscuity and passionate love affairs, yet they have complicated to follow taboos about what is and is not, "indecent". In short, they are gloriously complicated. Like me. :D

All of that isn't even getting into their architecture, the beauty of their homeland (which is an odd point for me, as I tend to dislike most any place with a higher than average temperature), their personal beauty, the fascinating interactions between the great houses and the ashlanders. All of this coupled with the bizarre cultural divide between them and the imperial element that is occupying their home makes for a truly interesting experience. For me at least.

All that being said, it goes without saying that I definitely prefer the drow. Also, the dunmer underwent a significant and jarring change after Morrowind, which takes away a lot of their cultural uniqueness. Especially Skyrim.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

Irennan
Resident
Posts: 589
Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2011 5:13 pm
Location: Italy

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Irennan » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:43 am

Sounds like I've been missing a lot of interesting stuff when I played Morrowind. To me, it had the same effect that Warcraft had. A truly cool world, a dispersive storyline that had me wandering around until I got tired. Guess that's what happens when you have ADD.

User avatar
Shae
Traveler
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2015 8:58 am
Location: California

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Shae » Fri Jun 08, 2018 7:47 am

I don't know if this counts since everything you mention is gaming, and it's not actually my favorite portrayal, although I like it, but as an anime/manga fan my gateway into drow was Pirotess and the other dark elves in "Record of Lodoss War" OAV. I also like the Night Elves from WoW.
Well known path to Chang'an resembles yiqi.
Hundred years of life cannot bear the grief.

--Du Fu

User avatar
Shir'le E. Illios
High Priestess
High Priestess
Posts: 2285
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2006 9:51 pm
Location: Eilistraee.com
Contact:

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Shir'le E. Illios » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:26 am

I've always had a liking for Warhammer's druchii, particularly their witch elves. Crazed homicidal maniacs who run around in bikinis (or less) using swords because they love feeling blood splatter all over their skin, to the point that they bathe in the stuff to stay eternally young. Complete opposite of Eilistraeen drow, but sometimes it's fun to just be evil and let loose.

I've really only got three evil characters I've played, and one of them is a crazed witch elf (the other two are way more thoughtful and calculated).


Love -x-x-x-

Shir'le
F'sarn natha tithaur wun l'su'aco.

-= Shir'le E. Illios =-
Chosen of Eilistraee

Irennan
Resident
Posts: 589
Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2011 5:13 pm
Location: Italy

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Irennan » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:11 pm

Shir'le E. Illios wrote:I've always had a liking for Warhammer's druchii, particularly their witch elves. Crazed homicidal maniacs who run around in bikinis (or less) using swords because they love feeling blood splatter all over their skin, to the point that they bathe in the stuff to stay eternally young. Complete opposite of Eilistraeen drow, but sometimes it's fun to just be evil and let loose.

I've really only got three evil characters I've played, and one of them is a crazed witch elf (the other two are way more thoughtful and calculated).


Love -x-x-x-

Shir'le


The Dark Eldar are more or less the 40k version of the fantasy Dark Elves--they are more eccentric and even crazier than the druchii. They are, well, extreme to the core. On a side note, I don't really *love* the Dark Eldar, but I find them well done, far better than Lolthite drow.

With the Lolthite, you have these people living what amounts to be a pitiable life of paranoia, fear, perpetual conflict and so on, and yet the assumption is that 90+% of them are somehow super fine with living like that. The drow have 0 reasons to follow Lolth, it's really self-destructive and not believable, especially after 10k years of crap with the assumption that no one has ever thought that "hey, maybe, just maybe we don't have to live like worms" (and that's with *2* deities who go out of their way to provide them a better future, yet, for some contrived reason, they automatically fail whenever they try something). That's just piss-poor worldbuilding tbh. It wouldn't be if the drow who followed Lolth were 1)not really "just ok" with that (as a general rule, not the exception) and their unhappiness showed in some way in their depiction, because brainwashing can only get you so far when you don't get the benefits of being a noble or priestess 2)the proportions of those who followed Lolth and those who followed Eilistraee and Vhaeraun were more balanced. 10k years is a long time for a languishing people to still be perfectly ok with keeping languishing.

Ironically, Gygax himself probably saw this, and that's the reason why the drow that he made were not 100% evil. The commoners (i.e. most of them) leaned towards neutrality and were presented as a possible ally for the players. When TSR let Ed present the drow in TDotU, you didn't get this idea of a languishing race who was happy with it, it was more nuanced (also, in Ed's version, 20% of them follow Eilistraee, which means that at least more than 20% follow Vhaeraun, leaving Lolth with like 50% of the race. That already is far more believable). Then, WotC's takes on the drow became less and less believable and more and more "hurr durr, eeeeebil".

With the Dark Eldar, each of them has all the reasons to want to live like they do. They are *addicted* to being Dark Eldar. They simply seek thrill and excitement, but, after tens of thousands of years, they have come to the point where they can only fulfill their fix of sensations by doing stuff that goes beyond simple crazyness. At this, point they literally feed on whatever mayhem they can cause. Moreover, FR isn't a grimdark world of evil races (even the orcs are definitely not born evil, as proven by many sources), Warhammer 40k is, OTOH, a world where races like the Dark Eldar fit perfectly.
Last edited by Irennan on Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:33 pm, edited 4 times in total.

Irennan
Resident
Posts: 589
Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2011 5:13 pm
Location: Italy

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Irennan » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:12 pm

Shae wrote:I don't know if this counts since everything you mention is gaming, and it's not actually my favorite portrayal, although I like it, but as an anime/manga fan my gateway into drow was Pirotess and the other dark elves in "Record of Lodoss War" OAV. I also like the Night Elves from WoW.


I didn't know that there were anime with dark elves, I'll need to check it out. Thanks for suggesting them.

Orin
Traveler
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:35 am
Location: St. Joseph MO
Contact:

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Orin » Fri Jun 08, 2018 6:51 pm

Irennan wrote:Sounds like I've been missing a lot of interesting stuff when I played Morrowind. To me, it had the same effect that Warcraft had. A truly cool world, a dispersive storyline that had me wandering around until I got tired. Guess that's what happens when you have ADD.

With Morrowind in particular, it's more like a feeling of the world, you know? It may also be that I just played an obscene amount of time playing that game. If it makes you feel any better at all, I know almost nothing about Warhammer, 40k or otherwise. Though I have in the past been very interested in it.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

Orin
Traveler
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:35 am
Location: St. Joseph MO
Contact:

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Orin » Fri Jun 08, 2018 6:52 pm

Shae wrote:I don't know if this counts since everything you mention is gaming, and it's not actually my favorite portrayal, although I like it, but as an anime/manga fan my gateway into drow was Pirotess and the other dark elves in "Record of Lodoss War" OAV. I also like the Night Elves from WoW.

I THOUGHT Lodoss War had some dark elves in it. I really need to watch that. I've only ever seen like one episode.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

Orin
Traveler
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:35 am
Location: St. Joseph MO
Contact:

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Orin » Fri Jun 08, 2018 6:56 pm

Shir'le E. Illios wrote:I've always had a liking for Warhammer's druchii, particularly their witch elves. Crazed homicidal maniacs who run around in bikinis (or less) using swords because they love feeling blood splatter all over their skin, to the point that they bathe in the stuff to stay eternally young. Complete opposite of Eilistraeen drow, but sometimes it's fun to just be evil and let loose.

I've really only got three evil characters I've played, and one of them is a crazed witch elf (the other two are way more thoughtful and calculated).


Love -x-x-x-

Shir'le

I've never really played an evil character. I'm kind of afraid to, if I'm honest. Though I have fantasized about playing one in a game with my one group that has always seemed to deteriorate into murder hobos, just to show them what true evil is. Then again, I'm pretty sure that I could play a truly evil SOB that would seem very much like a neutral or chaotic neutral character, because he's careful and wants to get paid.

All of that being said, I think I can easily understand why you'd enjoy playing druchii. It's like throwing all inhibition to the four winds and living like a wolf in glory and beauty.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

Orin
Traveler
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:35 am
Location: St. Joseph MO
Contact:

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Orin » Fri Jun 08, 2018 6:59 pm

I like the almost more realistic take with the Eldar being basically nihilists who are interested in only their own pleasure and fulfillment. Sociopaths make fantastic villains and have at least a logical goal.
Let not the biting, callous and sometimes cruel words of unenlightened and uncaring minds sway your heart from your passions. For it is your passions that are the language with which your soul speaks to the world.

User avatar
Shae
Traveler
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2015 8:58 am
Location: California

Re: Dark Elves in other media

Postby Shae » Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:13 am

Orin wrote:I THOUGHT Lodoss War had some dark elves in it. I really need to watch that. I've only ever seen like one episode.


You may perhaps be disappointed. As far as I know the only dark elf that really figures prominently in RoLW and spinoffs like Legend of Crystania is Pirotess/Sheru. You don't get that much on her people from what I recall of the OAVs. There is a bit more on them in Chronicles of the Heroic Knight. That was what made me want to know more about them back then, but there wasn't a lot readily available on the Lodoss elves back when I started looking for them and instead gobs of material kept coming up on D&D drow instead. RoLW is technically based on its creator's D&D game, so I thought I may as well look into what might have inspired it since I obviously wasn't going to get any easy access to the Lodoss elves themselves, and so that became my intro into D&D and drow.

This wiki has some information on them. I don't know where it comes from, although I presume a likely source would be from the novels or games since the anime lacks them. I can't vouch for the veracity of the information:

http://lodossisland.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Elves

This is a little about their development:

http://www.siliconera.com/2018/05/14/pe ... long-ears/

I think compared to how D&D has been used to prefer drow, the Lodoss dark elves are probably more nuanced overall---they're for instance willing to do technically selfless things like sacrifice themselves as decoys for their cause in Chronicles of the Heroic Knight, for instance, and if they were following Ashram's cause they technically were just fighting for a new home, of sorts. Though, the FR drow have some superficially similar aspects now with the scattering of drow out of the Underdark since 4E for reasons not necessarily to do with Lolth's interests and more for their own survival, and then the Vhaeraunite and Eilistraeen religions among other things.
Well known path to Chang'an resembles yiqi.
Hundred years of life cannot bear the grief.

--Du Fu


Return to “General Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests

cron