Friday, September 19, 2014

A Little More About Elves

With my first session of my face-to-face 5e game in the Land of Azurth coming up this weekend, I've had a few more thoughts about the elves in Yanth (which is timely, given than one on more of my players will probably play one).


High Elves (as they are called in the PHB) reflect reflect the most civlized elvish group. They tend to live apart from humans and the little folk (halflings, dwarves, some gnomes) that are associated with them. They tend to live in small settlements, maybe centered around fanciful, fairytale sort of castles (something like the Vadhagh in Moorcock's Swords Trilogy). They dress in pseudo-"High Medieval" sort of dress (a couple of centuries behind other folk) and talk in the sort of cod-Shakespearean way that Thor used to in Marvel Comics.


Wood Elves are more primitive than their high elf cousins. They're half The Hobbit's wood elves and half Elfquest. Part "indigenous people in harmony with nature", part "fairy forest trickster." The Elfquest elves, the Rankin-Bass wood elves, and Moebius's concept art for Willow are all good visual inspiration. They probably have a similar speech pattern to the high elves, but maybe with a little more Robin Hood banter.


As the pictures might indicate, elves won't be universally physically attractive--but they all have the fae glamour about them.

8 comments:

Jim Shelley said...

I like the look of the Wood Elves - that looks more realistic than some designs I've been looking at lately.

Jay Exonauts said...

Put me down in the "like" column for the "tribal/enlightened" look of the wood elves.

Tom Ryan said...

love that last picture.

I just started running a 5E campaign and my high elves are fallen, working within Human Society mainly.

My wood elves are like the last picture. They worship the three concepts of Green (nature), Red (civilization) and Black (death) and try to keep these in balance.

Trey said...

@Tom - Sounds cool!

Gina Shelley said...

I'm the one. Just giving you a heads up. I love this post. I was on the fence before reading it. I'm not anymore.

Trey said...

Cool. i'm glad it was inspirational.

Dan said...

Oh man, Elfquest. I fell madly and deeply in love with those comics when I was a teenager. Not easy to get here in the UK so every weekend I would scour the import section and second-hand bins (literally stacks of cardboard boxes in the back room of the comic shops). The Pinis have heavily influenced my idea f wood elves ever since (and the Gliders and High Ones are pretty damn good models for High Elves too).

Trey said...

They are. I feel like Elfquest is sort of underutilized as a source of inpiration.